Your Puppy’s Essential Needs

Food and Water Bowls: A puppy needs a variety of basic items. Topping the list are a food dish and a separate water bowl. A mat to put them on is also necessary in order to save the floor from slurped water and spilled food. If your puppy has long, hanging ears, get dishes specially made to keep their ears out of the food or water. Consider bowls with weighted bases or non-slip bottoms so your pet cannot push them all around the room. For a dog that will be very tall, two dishes in a raised stand will keep food and water where they belong and at a comfortable height. Lightweight plastic bowls are not a good idea especially for a teething, chewing puppy. If your puppy is in an exercise pen, a water bowl is available that hangs on the wire and can be raised as he grows.

Food: Begin with whatever dog food the breeder was feeding, or ask your veterinarian for advice. You may also buy a top-quality food made especially for puppies. Vets today agree that it is not necessary to add vitamins or minerals to a quality dog food for a healthy puppy. Too many vitamins are actually detrimental, especially for large breeds.

Cookies and treats: Small, plain dog biscuits are ideal for “good puppy” rewards and an occasional treat. Fancy flavored treats are okay for adult dogs, but young puppies do better on a blander diet and fewer treats!

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Collar and Leash: Collars come in all colors and styles. Just keep in mind that the puppy will outgrow several collars until he reaches his full size and he may go through as many as six different collar sizes as he grows. It is very sad to see a little puppy weighed down with a heavy chain collar and a leash strong enough to restrain a horse! Be sure each collar and leash you select matches the current size and strength of your puppy. Take him with you to the pet store to be sure you get the right collar, and keep in mind that you will probably be back in a couple of months for a bigger one. The leash will last longer, unless your puppy is allowed to use it as a teething toy, which is definitely not a recommended game.

Collars that can tighten around the dog’s neck are meant to be used only as training devices and removed when the lesson is over. They are not intended for continuous wear because they are dangerous. If this type of collar catches on any immovable object, the dog can easily strangle in his efforts to get free. Stay with soft buckle or snap-closure collars for everyday wear. If you go for “motivational training,” you will be staying with the soft collar.

5 Great Tips On Building A Dog House

Over 50% of the population allows their dog to stay indoors and sleep on the couch or in their owner’s bed. For those of you who are interested in building a dog house for you beloved pet here are some simple rules to follow when considering what type of shelter you want to provide.

1. You should begin your dog house building process by making sure the house is big enough to accommodate your animal’s potential adult size. Humans enjoy having about 2 feet of air above us in a room in order to live without feeling claustrophobic. Your dog will probably also enjoy having that much room. The comfort zone for both humans and dogs is about 1/3 of their standing height. To figure out how much room the dog will need get out a tape measure and measure your dog. Measure him standing straight up, sitting on his haunches and above all measure the full dimension of the dog when he is the most comfortable, relaxed and stretched out position he can get into. Your dog should be able to look out the front entrance while both standing up and sitting. So the dog will not have to significantly lover his front shoulders or scrape his belly make sure that entrance is high enough. Stand over the dog and measure the width of the widest point of the animal’s shoulders.

2. Remember to raise the dog house several inches from the ground to allow air and water to flow underneath. To dissuade pests from invading the dog house and taking your dogs health into consideration remember how important ventilation is. Put in a few nickel-sized holes in the walls under the eaves. Install a wind block inside the house so the dog can use the heat of its own body to warm up the area if it is really cold or windy outside. Consider adding a partial wall which will allow your dog to escape the bad weather. Your animal can choose to just sleep in the entry room or go around the inner archway maze wall into the inner sanctum. Your beloved pet would probably love having a pillow or some sort of bedding to sleep on.

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3. To avoid rain coming into the dog house make the floor just a bit slanted toward the doorway and build the roof a little bit slanted, as well. Make sure the house is well insulated but you should not paint the inside.

4. In the United States most storms come from the south and west so make sure the dog house faces a different direction. Most dog house plans suggest that the dog house door faces east. The cold air will not be able to whip through the entryway then.

5. It is suggested that you put hinges on the roof of the dog house. This makes it easier for you to clean out your dog’s home. You should clean the dog’s house as often as you give your dog a bath.

If your dog lives outside then he deserves to have a comfortable place to sleep and get out of harsh weather. Hopefully these easy tips on building a dog house will help you get started.

Guide To Borzoi Breed

History and origin: Once known as Russian Wolfhounds, this Russian sight hound was developed by crossing the extinct Lapp sled dog with the Collie. The Borzoi was used as coursing hounds to chase rabbits, foxes, and wolves in packs. His speed, agility, and strength allowed him to range far ahead of the mounted hunter, acquire the prey by sight, run it down, and hold it at bay until the hunter arrived. The first Borzoi was brought to the U.S. from England in 1889.

Description: The Borzoi stands 26 to 28 inches at the shoulder and weighs 65 to 100 pounds. He has a lean, leggy, athletic body and a long, silky, shedding coat that requires medium maintenance. The coat is usually white with black, tan, or lemon markings. It was developed to protect the breed from the cruel Russian winter.

About the breed: This breed was once a favorite among the Russian aristocrats and admired by the Russian czar’s court. He has the beauty, elegance, carriage, and personality to match his regal heritage. The Borzoi is fast, agile, aloof, and very clean. He is faithful to his owners but cautious with strangers. He is normally intolerant of unpredictable young children and may bite without warning. The Borzoi needs early training and socialization. The training should not be overbearing because this breed processes information slowly and will shut down if pushed. Patience and consistency are important. The “Sit” command is difficult to teach because of the Borzoi’s bony, lanky structure and lack of body padding. The “Come” command is crucial and must be perfected because his great speed enables him to disappear from sight in seconds. The Borzoi has a high prey drive and will seize and kill small animals before his owner can react. He can also be very dog-aggressive. Similar to all sight hounds, the Borzoi must often be allowed time to be by himself.

Do not expect him to be as affectionate as a Golden Retriever. Owners who are used to the mind-set of cats will appreciate this breed, though it would be a mistake to own a cat along with a Borzoi. He needs a bed or a thick blanket to lie on because he does not have much muscle or fat on his body and can get pressure sores if his sleeping area is not cushioned properly.

Feeding: Recommended feeding for this breed is 1 ½ – 2 ½ cans (13.3oz) of branded meaty with biscuit added in same amount or 5 cupfuls of complete dry food.

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Ideal home: This breed is not suitable to live in an apartment, although he can adapt to one as long as he is getting plenty of space and exercise. A quiet environment free of unpredictable events and young children is preferred. Small animals may pose a problem due to this breed’s high prey drive. He needs to run, and activity that is possible only if you have properly trained him to come when called and if you have socialized him among other dogs and people. Borzoi owners should be calm, easygoing leaders who do not necessarily want a dog that is too affectionate. Nervous, hyperactive, and pampering types should avoid this breed. The elderly and disabled may have trouble training and exercising this breed. He should not be left alone in a yard because can easily jump a six-foot fence.

Your Puppy’s Stages Of Life From Birth To 9 Months Old

0 to 7 Weeks: This is a period when the environment opens up for a puppy. His eyes and ears are excited to experience the sights and sounds of the world around him. This is a strong socialization period as a bond grows between his litter mates and mother. These bonds lead to a healthy, well-adjusted temperament. By day ten, however, the puppy should experience the touch of human hands and feel comfortable when being handled. This is a critical period for a puppy’s physical and emotional growth. The mother passes on 65 to 75 percent other temperament to her puppies. If she is calm, she will have a calming influence on a hyper puppy. The mother also passes natural antibiotics to the puppy through her milk during these weeks.

8 to 12 Weeks: Like a sponge, puppies at this stage absorb everything around them. They are curious and anxious to learn and play. At this age, puppy kindergarten can begin. It’s important to begin training but more important to create confidence. The training should be fun, not overly strict or aggressive. Negative experiences at this age can create impressions and behavior that can last the pup’s lifetime. Because this is such an impressionable stage, have a positive attitude when working and playing with your puppy. Build a foundation for him to develop positive patterns in his behavior.

3 1/2 to 4 Months: Puppies at this age are losing their baby teeth – you can feel good that those razor-sharp puppy teeth will soon be gone if your hands are still holding up. With any physical growth, there is a surge in hormones which affect the pup’s behavior. If your puppy is hyper to begin with, he will become 30 percent more hyper during this period. If he is shy, he may become 30 percent more shy. Through this period, you want to stay with a consistent training schedule.

4 to 5 Months: At this age, an owner becomes mystified with his puppy’s behavior. For example, your puppy may be housebroken one day, but urinate all over the floor the next. This is a common problem for many dog owners. Puppies are not being defiant at this stage, so never punish them. The problem is they are getting a surge of hormones which confuses them. The best thing to do is take a few steps back, and reinforce the housebreaking pattern you will learn in chapter four after this happens.

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5 to 6 1/2 Months: Puppies go through a noticeable growth spurt during the fifth month. Spaying or neutering during this stage doesn’t help – they will still go through a transitional phase.

6 1/2 to 7 1/2 Months:Your puppy will settle down for a while, allowing you to breathe a sigh of relief. But don’t relax just yet!

8 to 9 Months: This is the final hormonal surge within your puppy, when items around your house, such as remote controls, begin to disappear. This is a very challenging stage for owners because a puppy’s temperamental behavior will increase – a pup will be approximately 50 percent more aggressive, more shy, or more hyper. It is during this time that male dogs will begin to lift their legs when urinating. Attention, not punishment, is what your pup needs during this time. All the training you have done will seem to have gone for naught. Owners get panicky and frustrated because they think their pup should know better.

Dog Tricks: How To Teach Your Dog To Cross His Paws

A simple and adorable trick that you can easily teach your dog or puppy is to have her cross her paws. Many pets will do this by accident and it always puts a smile on my face when I witness this cute sitting posture.

You can easily teach train your dog to lie down and look elegant with its paws crossed by following these simple instructions:

Step 1: Start the exercise with your dog in the down position (of course he should already be trained to do so before attempting the ‘cross paws’ trick)

Step 2: Now have your dog offer his paw on command. If he does not know how to respond to this command yet, simply reach out and grab one of his paws. Be sure to click once (using a clicker) and offer a small treat each time. It is important that your dog remains in the down position while doing this.

TIP: If he still struggles to understand how to give you his paw, simply use the treat and place it in the palm of your hand a few inches is a way from one of his paws. Soon enough, he will naturally move to touch the treat that is in your hand in hopes that you will release the tasty snack. Be sure to click each time he taps your palm.

Step 3: Continue having your dog offer his paw, but be sure to concentrate only on one paw at a time and do so repetitively with a click and a treat.

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Step 4: When your dog has reached the stage where you can rely on him to target your hand with one of his paws, slowly move your hand closer to your dog’s other front paw. Now in order to offer you is paw, he must lift it up and move over sideways in order to reach your hand.

What may happen is that he may choose to lift the opposite paw instead of continuing with the trained paw. Each time this happens, all you have to do is pull away your hand and simply ignore this response from your dog.

Step 5: Your almost done. When your dog can target your hand as it has moved to the opposite side, near his other paw, quickly snap your hand back at the last second. His moved paw should now land right over the other paw and in a crossed-paw fashion. Be sure to click and offer a treat.

Step 6: Continue repeating this training regimen and each time his paw crosses over, slowly fade your hand away so it is further from the dog. Eventually, your dog will automatically cross his paws when he sees your hand signal, and at increasingly longer distances away from you.

5 Great Gift Ideas for Pet Lovers

With the holidays just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking of gifts to give your friends and loved ones. Finding unique gifts can present a challenge, and most people never consider giving pet-related gifts. Since the chances are good that more than one person on your holiday gift list has a pet that he or she adores, why not give a distinctive gift that your recipient will treasure? Here are five great gift ideas to get you started:

1. Fine Art Animal Prints

Dogs may come in many shapes and sizes, but each has a personality all its own. One of the most delightful gifts you can give to a pet lover is a fine art print of his or her breed. One of the most notable artists offering fine art animal prints is Lorena Pugh. Her print, “Princess,” for example, depicts a white toy poodle laying atop a stack of twelve colorful pillows, while “Angel Face” showcases a gorgeous pug who has just snagged a cluster of grapes off of a dining room table. In “Chocolate Craving,” she realistically captures the yearning of a chocolate lab as he reaches for a tennis ball against a beautiful background of blue sky. These limited edition animal prints are sure to be treasured, as each comes with a consecutively numbered dog tag to match the tag in the print.

2. Crystal Animal Statues

Whether your gift recipient has a dog, cat, horse, or rabbit, he or she is sure to enjoy an elegant crystal animal statue. Typically made from 24 percent lead crystal, hand-finished animal statues are beautiful yet whimsical. Crystal animal statues can depict a wide variety of pets, from a sitting cat to a dog with a bone; from a turtle to a frog; from a horse to a mouse; and from a duck to a dove.

3. Stone Animal Statues

Who wouldn’t love a playful stone animal statue depicting their beloved pet? Animal garden statues are perfect gifts, as are stone animal statues for the home and office. While some statues – like a sleeping spaniel puppy or an eager dachshund – make you feel warm inside, others – like a cat holding a pair of binoculars up to his eyes, ever watchful for a bird – make you chuckle. Stone animal statues are available for virtually any type of pet, and are certain to be cherished.

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4. Animal Posters

If you’ve ever owned a pet, you know how funny they can be. Animal posters depict pets in a variety of outlandish situations (remember the cat in “Hang in There”?), and are eminently affordable. An animal poster is sure to bring a smile to your recipient’s face.

5. Entertainment

When it comes to gifts for pet lovers, there’s nothing more unique that pet-related entertainment. There is actually a music company that creates music for animals, so consider giving a gift of music about and for cats, dogs, or birds. Another great gift idea is to buy a DVD or video that is designed to entertain your recipient’s dog or cat. Your friend or loved one can play the DVD or video while he or she is at work or out running errands – guilt free!

It’s both original and thoughtful to give a gift that acknowledges your recipient’s pet as a central part of his or her life. Pet lovers will appreciate and treasure your gift, whether it’s a fine art animal print or an entertaining DVD.

Boring Ordinary Dog Tags – Are There Better-looking Personalized Dog Tags Out There?

I was wondering if you share the same problem as myself 5 months back?

You see. I failed to find any unique or good-looking personalized dog tags anywhere – online or offline!

The search mission for a better-looking tag started when my girlfriend, Alice bought a new Chihuahua pup – Misty. While looking for a dog tag, she complained to me that most of the dog tags available are both too ordinary and actually boring looking…

“C’mon, there must be better-looking ones…” I assured her confidently and went online to look for one.

To my surprise, I can’t find any! All the tags I found online are deemed boring and not unique at all… at least according to her standard.

I even went to the local pet shops – the dog tags there are not any better, if not worse. Ordinary engraved dog tags – I guess they must have been around for at least 15 years. And they still look the same today. Amazing!!!

Ok, I admit. I did find some good-looking personalized dog tags online – there are some high-end ones, such as sapphire, real silver, gold, and even diamond embedded dog tags. But seriously, I’m just not prepared to pay hundreds on a dog tag! I’ll rather spend the money on better grooming services or maybe on her food.

I’m looking for something in the range of maybe 10-20 dollars maximum.

2 days later… I gave up. I simply can’t find any! I decided to custom make one for Misty – to keep Alice happy of course. 😉

With the help of a friend, Lee who is in the plaque business and with his (trade secret) coating technique, I can basically put any artwork, graphic and even image onto the tag. I went on to design Misty’s personalized dog tag.

Using the idea of a newborn baby permit I saw online, a good-looking (newborn pet permit) tag with Alice’s contact information and Misty’s image was made.

Alice was happy when she saw the tag. It was unique, personalized, and one of its kind. It was special, just like her pup – Misty.

But… her happiness did not last long. The tag was not scratch-resistant! The design started to peel off slowly. It was good-looking… but not functional.

Frustrated but not about to give up, (seriously, I don’t have any solution at all then) Lee then coated the tag with his company’s patented protective coating.

Problem solved! Misty’s personalized dog tag is now scratch-resistant and anti-tarnish (image won’t turn yellowish over time) because of the coating. It was even better-looking now! Because the coating leaves the tag with a beautiful glossy finished.

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8 weeks of research and development (definitely much longer if without my Lee’s help, this article may makes it look easy… trust me. its not.), close to a thousand dollars spent. A good-looking, highly personalized dog tag was born.

“Was it worth all the effort?” If you ask me, I seriously don’t have the answer.

But I admit I did learn a lot from this experience… and of course in the process Dogcustomer.com was born. I’ll leave that story to another day.

My stand is that Misty won’t feel the difference between wearing a conventional engrave dog tag or a highly personalized good-looking dog tag. Only Alice will… and only Alice will understand why she wants that…

Your Dog Is Hyperactive When You Get Home From Work… What Should You Do?

Dear Adam,

I am a member of the Bouvtrain list. That’s how I got your name. I’m almost through your book and it has certainly given me some new ideas. Gypsy is a 1 1/2 year old Bouvier. She is very high-strung but we’re working on it. You’re absolutely right that it does no good to send your dog away to school. For $900 bucks she now does just what the dog trainer tells her to do. I’m getting a lot better, though.

Here’s my question. I exercise her in the morning. We play ball for 30 minutes and then we walk a mile practicing sits, downs and stays. At night we play ball for about 15 minutes. I work from 10am to about 7pm. She stays in the kitchen with a dog door leading to a large 6′ fenced back yard. She sleeps almost all day and she doesn’t sleep at night. She paces and barks. I make her stay in the kitchen (baby gates) so I can get some sleep. I don’t know any other Bouviers so I don’t know if this is normal or not. She has hip dysplasia and has had hip surgery. I thought it might be pain so tried giving her an aspirin at night. Didn’t help. I tried getting up to correct her but she hears me and gets in bed before I get there. Right now I’m just trying to ignore her. The kitchen has a large bay window to the front of the house but there are curtains. She’s been doing this for months and I haven’t had a full nights sleep in months, either. Would crating her help?

Any ideas would be appreciated.

Robbye and Gypsy

Dear Robbye:

Thanks for sending me this e-mail. It’s a perfect example as to why simply “ignoring” bad behavior will never work on dogs that care more about pleasing themselves than anything else.

Here are some tips:

When she starts to bark, you’ll need to yell, “No!” from your bedroom, and then continue saying, “No, no, no!” as you run to her and administer a correction. It doesn’t matter if she climbs back in her bed at this point, as you’ve already used the word, “No!” as an event-marker. So she’ll know what she’s being corrected for. As long as you continue saying, “No!” you have an additional 7 to 14 seconds in which the dog will still associate your correction with the behavior.

Put a crate in your bedroom and let her sleep in it. Even though it doesn’t seem like much to us humans, dogs think that sleeping together is quality time when they’re not alone. This can help with some of her anxiety.

You may also try just putting her on a leash and attaching the leash to the foot of your bed. If she knows a down-stay, you can simply correct her if she gets up. After a couple of evenings, she’ll learn that when you bring her into the bedroom and make her lay down, it’s time to stay put.

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If you don’t feel that her hip is bothering her, I would recommend increasing the amount of exercise time. Feed her as soon as you get home from work and then take her out and play ball for at least 30 minutes. An hour would be even better.

If you can’t play ball with her for a whole hour, then work her through a very intense obedience routine (heel, sit, heel, down, come, heel, etc…) for about 15 minutes and then play ball with her for another 10 minutes.

When I lived in Berkeley, California I had an American Pit Bull Terrier that was a very high-energy bitch. If I took her to the park on a Monday afternoon and played fetch for a whole hour, we’d later return to my apartment and within 20 minutes she’d be bouncing off the walls again.

However, if I took her out on a Wednesday and we simply did an intense obedience routine for 20 minutes, we’d return to the apartment and she would collapse under my coffee table and not move for the next 2 hours.

5 Ways In Which A Dog’s Intelligence Has Shaped Their Services

The uses of dogs that capitalize on aspects of their instinctive intelligence have become more varied in today’s world. A quick sampling of some of these contemporary dog careers includes:

1. seeing-eye dogs, who guide their blind masters around obstacles, warn them of approaching vehicles, and allow them to navigate independently, even in the complex urban environment;

2. Hearing-ear dogs, who alert their deaf masters to sounds, such as the ringing of a doorbell or telephone or the whistle of a teakettle;

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3. Search and rescue dogs, who are used to track and find individuals who are lost or buried by debris in earthquakes or under snow in avalanches;

4. Water rescue dogs, who retrieve individuals and objects from the water, swim lines out to stranded boaters, and even drag small boats to waiting rescuers;

5. Drug and explosive-finding dogs, who use their scenting abilities to find contraband materials. A variation on this are the dogs that find truffles for connoisseurs of this delicacy. They are better than the pigs that have been traditionally used for two reasons: dogs have keener scenting powers, and they don’t like the taste of truffles, so there is less worry that they will eat them before the gatherers get to them.

Bordetalla Shots – What’s the Story on this Particular dog Vaccination?

Your vacation plans are all set and you have tickets to that once in a lifetime trip to Paris, France. Your luggage is packed, and your passport is up to date. The only fly in the ointment is the fact you’re your loyal canine companion will not be able to make this trip with you. He will need to remain behind, yet you do not want him to spend a whole week all by himself at home. After all, dogs are pack animals and loneliness can cause some serious depression in a dog. Yet none of your friends or family members is willing or able to take in your fluffy friend, and so you are contacting the local kennels to ask about having your dog boarded in your absence. No matter whom you speak to, everyone always asks if your canine friend’s Bordetella vaccine is up to date, and you are beginning to wonder just what it is that they are asking you.

Bordetella is often referred to as kennel cough since it is a respiratory disease. A bacterial infection, it may occur when dogs are kept in close contact with other dogs, such as a boarding kennel, during a dog show, or even at the groomer’s. A vaccination usually conveys the immunity needed to help your canine meet and greet other dogs without picking up bacteria.

You know that your pooch has picked up a case of kennel cough if you suddenly hear him cough repeatedly. The inflammation of the windpipe as well as the air passages will result in frequent coughing spells, some of which will be followed up by vomiting. Dog lovers are quick to point out usually a case of kennel cough is relatively harmless and actually goes away on its own within a couple of weeks. Yet this should not lure you into a lax habit when it comes to vaccinating your canine friend! As a matter of fact, some dogs do develop serious complications that may actually result in life-threatening conditions. In addition to the foregoing, if you fail to vaccinate your dog, and even if she or he comes through a bout of kennel cough with no problem, he will still be a carrier and infection other dogs that may not be so lucky. Here the old adage that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” most certainly does apply!

Fortunately, an intranasal vaccination will protect your dog against Bordetella. The vaccine is also available as an injection, and some vets do prefer to give it via the needle. If you anticipate exposure to other dogs, perhaps you are planning to enter your dog at the local dog show or you may need to board her or him briefly while you are away, it is a good idea to give your dog a booster vaccination at least one week ahead of time. Otherwise, you can simply include this vaccination during your regular annual vet visit.

See: puppy shampoo guide

Of course, other than preventing your dog from catching this very contagious disease, there is another good reason why this particular dog vaccination is a good idea: you and your veterinarian will be able to exclude Bordetella infection from the list of culprits if your canine companion suddenly suffers from an inexplicable cough. Keeping in mind that coughing may be a sign of allergies, bronchitis, and even throat irritation after prolonged time periods of barking, it will help your vet to determine which route to take when treating your pooch.

As you can see, pet owners, or pet parents as some like to be called, have the important responsibility of ensuring their dog’s continued health, and a simple vaccination goes a long way in stacking the deck in her or his favor. Much like human influenza, however, it is important to note that a Bordetella vaccination does not guarantee your dog’s immunity from the bacteria. As a matter of fact, if your dog becomes exposed to it too soon after vaccination, odds are that immunity has not yet built up. Similarly, if your dog has already been exposed to the bacteria, then a vaccination will be too little too late. It is important at that point to find out where the dog has become infected and the facility that they may have an outbreak on their hands. At the same time, alert your veterinarian to the exposure and have your dog treated.

Your Dog or Puppy Will Thank You If You Read This Guide to Canine Parasites and Diseases

Even if you give your pet the good things he needs such as a good amount of physical activity and good foods for him, you need to realize that your pet can still become sick. The best way to help you pet is to make sure that as soon as you notice something wrong that you take care of it. For example, the symptoms that you may feel yourself when feeling sick, such as diarrhea, lack of appetite or a look of being out of it can be a sign that he has a bug. But, on the other hand, if the symptoms last more than a few days, it’s time to call your vet. They may have something more serious such as parasites or an infection.

One of your first concerns should be when you pet has diarrhea. This is very important to notice especially in puppies. Again, it may seem like he just has a bug, but it can also signal that there is something more wrong such as a virus, parasite or bacterial infection. While a change in the type of food the dog eats or just the stress he is under can cause it, it’s important to take steps to protect your animal when he has diarrhea. You need to insure your pet, especially your puppy, does not dehydrate. If the condition lasts for more than a day or so, you should call your vet. You may need to collect a sample for the vet so that he or she can figure out what the problem is and how to treat it.

What about a dog with what looks like a cold? Dogs that are coughing or have discharge coming from their nose are often suffering from a URI (Upper respiratory infection.) These are caused by a virus or bacteria that are lurking in the air. It is important for you to realize what is happening with your dog, for your sake and the pets. What they have is something they can pass on to you and your family as well. Some pets can develop dehydration or even develop pneumonia. Dogs that are exposed to a shelter like situation can also contract other respiratory diseases such as Bortadella or kennel cough. Rest and some proper care can have the dog over this disease within a few days. You can have your dog vaccinated for this condition which is a great thing to do for anyone who uses a doggie daycare of needs to use boarding shelters for when you travel.

Most municipalities will require that all dogs receive a certain number of vaccinations. These are very important to your dog’s health. They help to prevent more deadly diseases from affecting your pet. For example, parvovirus, distemper and rabies are diseases that can be vaccinated against. Your dog will likely need to have a booster vaccine every year or so to protect them continuously. Doing this protects you and the dog as well as other dogs in the area.

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Parasites can also attack and harm a dog. For many dogs, there are a number of parasites that can affect them. In order to monitor for this, your dog will need to be seen by a vet regularly and the vet is likely to need you to provide them with a sample of fecal matter. A good thing to watch for is small rice sized granules in the dog’s bedding or near its anus. This is a sign of worms and your pet needs to be seen by a vet to help stop the problem.

But, that’s not all of the parasites that can infect your dog. On his skin there can also be parasites. For example, mange and sarcoptic mites are critters that like to live here the hair follicle and on the skin of the pet. Ear mites live inside the pet’s ear. They can really cause your dog pain and should be taken care of. You may not be able to see them, either. If your dog is uncomfortable or is scratching quite a bit, even skin biting, there are most likely parasites that need to be taken care of. Of course, there are also fleas to contend with.

You should always consult a qualified veterinarian if you are concerned about your pet’s health.

5 Types Of Body Wear Collars

Collars are often chosen as a fashion statement but these choices should change with your requirements for your dog’s training. When you train obedience you should choose one collar; if you are training your dog in protection, you might need another type. This all evolves as your dog becomes more off-lead responsible.

Leather Collars: Leather collars are soft and come in a flat or round shape. They tend to be gentle on your dog’s neck, and in general the wider the collar (one and a half to two inches), the more comfortable the fit. The round leather collar is more likely to produce hacking behaviors if your dog forges.

Some leather collars are sold for training German shepherd dogs, rottweilers, and other competition protection breeds. They are two inches wide and made for comfort during agitation and bite training.

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Chain Collars: Chain collars are usually of the slip-choker or pinch-collar variety. These collars are used strictly for training, so once trained, dogs should be outfitted with more comfortable equipment. The chain slip collar can be a very effective tool when used correctly. If you have one of these on your dog, and he is choking at the end of the leash, take it off. Knowledge of correct usage is essential or the collar is merely abusive. The device is meant to be worn loose on your dog and used in conjunction to voice and body postures. Learning how to use it takes practice and usually professional assistance.

Pinch Collars: The pinch or prong collar looks barbaric but is a very useful tool when used correctly, and it offers much less potential for injury than the slip collar. The pinch collar is fitted to the neck size for effectiveness. This collar should be used with the aid of a professional in that the discomfort offered by this collar can result in an aggressive overreaction by a dog. But it is a great tool for the right handler and the right dog.

Nylon Collars: As with the nylon leashes, these collars are also very strong. They are great house collars. You can hang your dog’s vaccination and identification tags off of them. They are durable, affordable, and available in many colors.

Major Concerns with a Border Terrier

If you want to have a small but sturdy pet dog, then the Border terrier might be for you. This pet is no delicate lapdog. The Border terrier pet dog is full of fun for the whole family.

Before getting a Border terrier pet dog, however, you might want to consider some of the major concerns regarding the breed. This will help you weigh the pros against the cons and will let you reach a decision that would be best for you. Here are some concerns regarding Border terrier pet dogs:

1) Temperament – when people talk about terriers, they all comment on the same behavior using different words. Some people say that their dogs are feisty. Some say that their dogs are stubborn. Some people would prefer to use the word impulsive. The point is, they all describe the same behavior. A terrier is inherently dynamic in its behavior. It is part of what makes a terrier, a terrier.

The temperament of the Border terrier pet dog may be quite surprising, if not outright shocking for most people because of its size. For such a small dog, a Border terrier pet dog sure packs a lot of energy.

2) Aggression – Border terrier pet dogs are not really as aggressive as other breeds. However, its instincts as a terrier would still urge it to run after anything smaller than it. This means that if you own a cat or even a pet rabbit, you cannot have a Border terrier pet dog. This also means that you cannot trust a Border terrier pet dog out of its leash. If it even sees something running, it will take off, leaving you yelling uselessly. This, of course, can cause accidents to happen. In order to make sure that your Border terrier pet dog does not get hit by a car, you need to keep that pet on a leash outside.

3) Escape – it is recommended by many experts that Border terrier pet dogs should be kept in a fenced-in yard to let it have some roaming space while making sure that it is safe. However, you should know that Border terrier pet dogs are clever escape artists. Even if a Border terrier pet dog is within a closed in fence, you should try to keep an eye on it.

4) The noise – Border terrier pet dogs will bark at practically anything that catches their attention. Because of this, you need to properly train them to bark only when needed. You should also be quick to stop them if they are barking inappropriately.

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For this reason, you should not really get a Border terrier pet dog if you live with very close neighbors and if you work during the day. An unsupervised Border terrier pet dog is sure to keep barking all day long. This, of course, may draw complaints from your neighbors.

5) Independent thinking – what people love about Border terrier pet dogs is the fact that they can learn very quickly. This is because of their inherent curiosity and toughness. However, the same qualities that make them prize-winners can also make them very stubborn when they want to. You have to be consistent with your commands and show the Border terrier pet dog that you mean what you say. In doing so, you will be training the Border terrier pet dog properly.

Your Dog’s Health: The Basics

The first rule in taking care of your dog is: When your dog is sick, take him to a veterinarian! Use with caution advice of friends or people who are supposed to be “old, experienced dog breeders.” Only a veterinarian is qualified to diagnose trouble and prescribe treatment.

However, it is your job to keep your dog from getting sick. Let us assume you start with a puppy. You should know something about “shots”, worm medications, flea powders, and poisons.

While a puppy is nursing, it may receive protective antibodies in its mother’s milk. As soon as the puppy is weaned, this natural immunity will begin to disappear and may be gone within two weeks. Many puppies are susceptible to diseases at this young age. Your veterinarian may prescribe a vaccination program beginning at 6 to 8 weeks, so it is important that you contact him/her immediately.

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Distemper, hepatitis and leptospirosis are common and serious diseases which destroy many pets each year. Rabies is also a threat which should be guarded against in rural as well as metropolitan areas because of the possible chance of exposure to bites of infected animals.

The only satisfactory method of protecting your dog is by vaccination. Your veterinarian may want to give your puppy immediate temporary protection at the time of purchase or adoption with a “puppy shot” of antiserum which contains antibodies against distemper, hepatitis and leptospirosis as well as some of the other common diseases. Vaccinations provide long term immunity and most puppies will be started on a series of vaccinations on their first visit to the veterinarian. Booster vaccines are then advisable on a regular basis for adult dogs, to maintain his overall health for years to come.

Your Dog Will Thank You If You Read These Doggie Diet Tips

Although it was once common practice to feed dogs whatever scrapes came from the dinner table, today we realize that there is much more to feeding an animal than we thought. It is important to give them foods that will provide them with a healthy life and a long one too. In fact, there are a number of researchers who dedicate their lives to understanding just what your pet should and shouldn’t eat. You can bank on what they have found that should be in your dog’s diet.

It is important to provide your animal with the right type of food. That means that you should give her food that is right for the dog’s age and activity levels and that is right for her size as well as her health. You’ll find a wide selection of products to choose from in your pet store. It is wise to purchase the best quality of food for your pet that you can afford to buy. Realize that if you purchase poor quality food for your animal, his health can be lacking.

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Your pet’s diet should include some dry food because the crunch will help to keep her teeth clean and it will also help with gum health. It provides the fiber in your dog’s diet that is necessary. You can use wet food, but don’t give them too much of it. For example, pour some over your dog’s dry food instead of giving them the whole can. If you are interested in providing your pet with home made foods, find dog specific recipes throughout the web to use. It is important not to give your dog leftovers from your meal though. You need the food to provide nutrition to your dog based on his needs. Things like fats, and fillers in human food, as well as spices, can make a dog sick.

As a puppy, your dog needs to eat frequently throughout the day, about three or four smaller meals, until they are about three months old. Then, cut it down to only three meals a day for the next three months. Ideally, your adult dog should each twice per day. You should provide your dog’s food to them for up to twenty minutes. At that point remove it if they have not eaten it and are not in the process of doing so. This will help to stop picky eaters. You do need to provide a constant amount of clean water for your pet to drink as well.

Ideally, you will need to get recommendations about the amounts of food to feed your dog from your vet. Sometimes, information is also available on the food bags as well. Not sure if your pet is eating the right amount? Here’s a test. If you run your hand against the dog’s side, you should feel her ribs without pressing. If you can not feel them without pressing, she may be overweight. If you can see them, though, she is underweight.

5 Tips When Dealing With An Injured Dog

Many traffic accidents involving dogs, both minor and severe, could have been prevented with proper obedience training. Be sure that your dog is well trained and always under the control of a reasonable person when he is being walked outside, especially when being walked near a busy road.

If for some reason an accident does occur and your dog gets hit by a car, do not panic. Keep your emotions in check and use common sense. Your dog is still very much at risk for further injury, so be extremely careful when moving him out of further danger.

Warning: A dog that is badly injured may bite you if he is in shock or severe pain. This holds true even if he belongs to you and knows you. So before assessing the dog’s injuries, use a scarf or other piece of clothing to muzzle him. A rope or a tie will do just fine here as well. Examine the dog’s face and body for injury and get immediate medical attention.

Moving An Injured Dog

Regardless if the dog is conscience or unconscious, it must be moved to a safe place. Have someone watch out and block further traffic while you adhere to the following six tips:

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1. Before attempting to move the dog out of the risk of traffic, check over the his body for obvious wounds, cuts, and distorted limbs,

2. With the help of another person, carefully drag and then lift the dog’s body onto a blanket or a coat if you have one. Pull the blanket or coat out of harms way. Avoid rubbing any obvious injuries.

3. It is important to keep the dog muzzled if he is experiencing obvious shock or pain. Be sure to securely tie the muzzle so as to prevent an accidental bite.

4. Gently feel every limb for broken or dislocated bones. And if you suspect a fractured limb, then move it as little as possible. Also, a dog with potential spinal injuries should be lifted on a flat board.

5. Some dogs whom have been injured in car accidents appear to be normal. But beware, he may have damage to internal organs. He will need immediate medical attention. Once the dog has been removed for further risk in traffic, examine it thoroughly and take him to the nearest vet.

The Scruffy Little Hunter Dog: Border Terrier

The Border terrier got its name from the area called Cheviot Hills, which is actually near the border of England and Scotland. This is where these dogs were made to attack and terminate predatory foxes.

They have wiry coat that is why they normally appear as scruffy. However, this scruffiness is an attention-grabber that is why owners do not forget to hug their little ball of energy.

The following are some of the basic facts breeders would really love to know about Borders:

Category: Terrier

Living Environment: indoors (highly recommended); outdoors (fenced yard)

Coat: wiry and short; double coated

Colors: tan, red, grizzle and tan, and/or blue and tan

Height: between 11 and 16 inches

Weight: between 11 and 16 pounds

Temperament:

Naturally,

• they are scruffy, hard and bold hunters
• they are active as puppies but mellow down as they mature
• they are not friendly with rabbits, rats, hamsters, and even birds
• they are economical to feed
• their activity die down when left alone all day as they really love to please people especially their owners

When properly trained,

• they can get along with the household cats but not with cats in the neighborhood
• they may even catch a burglar
• they may lose timidity when accustomed to active environments

Breeders should note of the following health issues:

• Canine Epileptoid Cramping Syndrome or CES, also called as “Spike’s disease”, which is a hereditary, neurological, metabolic and muscle disorder that is sometimes confused with canine epilepsy
• Cataract, or loss of transparency of one or both lenses of the eyes
• Cryptorchidism, wherein testicles do not descend into the scrotum
• Deafness
• Skin problems and a few skin allergies

Care and Exercise:

• Their coat needs weekly brushing.
• They should be professionally groomed at least twice a year.
• They should bathe only when necessary since they shed little to no hair. Their physique requires a regular exercise routine which includes a daily play time while on leash.
• They should be on leash while walking in public places because of their hunting instincts.

Origin/History:

The exact origins of Border terriers are obscure but many breeders accepted the story that the variety was developed in the Cheviot Hills area, which is near the border of Scotland and England. The Borders have been used as hunters of rabbits and hares. They can even keep up with running horses with their short yet sturdy legs. They were also used by farmers to lure predatory foxes into their dens before killing them.

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They were also trained to hunt otters, marten, and even fierce badgers. Like most terriers that were once molded as hunters, they also evolved as pets and became lovely, friendly, and loyal companion dogs. They also take part in dog shows and they can easily grab their audience attention with their agility, appearance, and bright disposition.

The breed was registered by the British Kennel Club in 1920 and by the American Club ten years after.

At present, Borders are highly favored as companion dogs and pets due to their adaptability, friendliness, and winning personality. Nonetheless, they can be reliable when it comes to tracking down vermin. In fact, some of their esteemed talents include hunting, guarding the family, and performing tricks and sports that require competitive obedience.

Like most terriers, you can be rest assured to have a loyal and bright companion dogs if you give your attention and affection to a Border. You can be sure that they can definitely drive away your bore!

Your Dogs Diet – Feeding Fables That Every Dog Owner Should Know

Canine nutrition hasn’t become as laden with diet fads as have human meal planning. But it has accumulated a number of myths which survive the ridicule of the veterinary profession. As you acquire a dog, your more experienced friends will shower you with advice, which may include some of the following affirmations:

– “A clove of garlic keeps worms away” Garlic has enjoyed a reputation for centuries in the folk medicine of many cultures as an antiseptic, a treatment for high blood pressure, etc. But if your dog really does have worms, (and most of them do at one time or another), the quickest way to get rid of them is to have your veterinarian give him a specific worming medicine under his supervision.

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– “Raw meat makes a dog vicious” Raw or cooked meat is essential to a dogs nutrition. Fifty percent is the standard ration, and it may compare as much as 75 percent of his diet. If he is fed only meat, he may become high strung, not because the meat is raw, but because he is being given an unbalanced diet.

– “A sugar cube dipped in coffee is good for a dogs heart” It is particularly good for his morale, because it probably means that he is sharing your after dinner coffee with you. Give it occasionally as a harmless treat, but not as a regular “medicine”, and not as a heart remedy.

– “Dogs cannot digest starch” They cannot digest uncooked starch, but they can cope with most cooked ones such as rice, whole wheat bread, and macaroni. However, dogs do not receive much nourishment from these foods.

– “Sugar causes worms” Sugar is quick source of energy for dogs, as it is far us. Worms are caused by worm larvae. A puppy may get worms from his mother, and an adult dog may get them from infected food or drink, from the saliva or feces of an infected dog, or from swallowing fleas and lice which act as hosts to tapeworm eggs- but never from sugar.

– “Raw eggs improve dog’s coat” A raw egg yolk from time to time enriches a dog’s diet. Cooked eggs are an acceptable substitute for meat in an emergency. But the best coat conditioner is far, especially unsaturated fat, rich in vitamin E, such as linseed and wheat germ oil. The eggs reputation as a coat conditioner is probably due to the fact that yolk is mostly fat.

– “Milk causes diarrhea in an adult dog” Milk is healthy for all dogs. A bowl of milk with a beaten egg yolk and a couple of pieces of whole wheat toast or dog biscuits is a standard supper dish in many kennels. There are various causes for diarrhea, including internal parasites, indigestion, a change of diet, food poisoning, certain contagious diseases- and sometime, but not always, milk.

Knowledge and concern are important in feeding a growing puppy whose nutrition is the foundation of his future health. But common sense is all you need to feed an adult dog correctly, as his own experience will help guide you most of the way.

5 Tips To Remember When Teaching The “Come” Command

1. Use it sparingly. When you overuse “Come”, puppies stop paying attention. When your puppy understands the command, avoid using it all the time. Say it infrequently and make it extremely rewarding.

2. Do not chase your puppy if he does not respond. Practice on-lead for now.

3. Never call for negatives. If you have to groom, bathe, or isolate your puppy, do not use “Come.” Also avoid using it when you are angry. You will only scare your puppy out.

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4. If your puppy runs away from you, do not repeatedly call or correct him.

5. Use a different command to bring your puppy inside. Coming in from outdoors is a big drag, no more fun than being left alone or ignored. Using the “Come” command when you want to bring him in makes it a negative command. Instead, pick a command like “Inside.” Start using it on-lead when bringing your puppy into the house. Quickly offer a treat or ball toss.

Border Collie Dog Breed

The Border Collie has been bred for over 100 years with functionality as the number one priority. These sheep herding dogs were abundant in Great Britain during the 1800s, however they were made up of different types. Most of these dogs were considered to be “fetching” dogs who had the ability to circle stock and guide them back towards the shepherd.

Sheepdogs (as the Border Collies were called) became very popular and in 1873 the first official sheepdog trial took place to test the qualities and function of the animals. This led to one of the first famous Border Collies known as “Hemp”.

Hemp did very well at the trials and sired a high number of offspring. In fact, he is considered to be the father of the Border Collie. Hemp’s way of herding was done with intimidation, using eye contact with the livestock.

Although these dogs were very popular and functioned superbly at their sheepdog abilities, it wasn’t until 1915 that “Border Collie” was officially announced as the proper name for the breed. And as soon as the Border Collie came to America they were instantly appraised by serious shepherds who needed the animal’s magnificent herding abilities. Amazingly enough, it took until the year 1995 for the AKC to officially recognize the Border Collie as a show dog.

Personality

As far as temperament is concerned, Border Collie dogs have enormous amounts of intelligence and is highly obedient. While these attributes are positive, it can make for a disastrous house dog when kept enclosed with little exercise. Border Collies are very loyal and protective towards its family, so be prepared for its reserved and guardian-like personality to spring up when in the company of strange dogs and other animals.

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Taking Care Of Your Border Collie

This is one dog that thrives off of physical and mental stimulation each and every day. You can easily say that the border collie simply “needs a job to do” whenever possible. He is extremely work-oriented and genetically programmed for labor.

Border Collie dogs can certainly live outdoors in very mild to cool climates, but of course it prefers and enjoys the company of its family inside the house, especially at night. This is one animal that should not be forced to live in a small apartment.

Health Information

Border Collie’s have a lifespan of up to 15 years, with 12 being the average. Fortunately, this dog breed does not have many health problems that arise. Major concerns are only CHD. Minor health issues that may come up are hypothyroidism, PRA, PDA, CEA, seizures, OCD, and lens luxation, but these occurrences are extremely rare.

Your Dogs Instincts – A Modern Day Pet or Primal Beast?

A dog’s behavior is influenced by certain basic instincts which you should be aware of if you want to understand your dog. Some of them have been lessoned by the protected life led by modern pets. In fact, the dog as a species seems to be undergoing an important period in his evolution since never before in history have so many of them been bred exclusively as pets.

The instinct for survival is common to all living creatures. No acquired behavior pattern is strong enough to dominate entirely this powerful drive. When it is aroused, the only effective means of controlling it is constraint. Along with this instinct is the Instinct for procreation, or mating instinct. It is normally very strong although it varies for the same health reasons, hormonal balance, opportunity and more rarely, psychological inhibitions.

Need for companionship is an instinct common to both dog and man. Many canine personality disturbances have no other cause than the solitary confinement imposed on them by man. Studies show that the critical period when a puppy forms his primary attachment to humans is between the ages of 3 and 10 weeks. If he is “imprinted” by sufficient pleasurable human relations during this time, he is apt to remain attached to humans, But if he is confined in a Kennel with only other dogs and deprived of human contact, he will prefer animal contact over humans forever.

Like human beings, dogs are vulnerable to mob psychology. The pack instinct is a more accurate term because it usually brings out the worst side of their nature. It may take no more than one other dog for this psychological phenomenon to occur. Most dogs want to pleasure their owner. But once they become a member of a pack their old instincts take over and the owner is forgotten. It is very important never to let your dog run loose where he can get into bad company.

Dogs have always retained the instinctive need for a pack leader. This need is the role hat we play in our pet’s life. Dogs I whom this instinct is strongest are the most trainable. They are the ones that follow you around as puppies, who never want to leave your side as adults, who listen to you, study your facial expressions, and enjoy contact with you. They seek the approval of their pack leader and will do for free what other dogs need to be bribed to do.

Most owners provide protection, food, and shelter as do wildlife pack leaders. But you must also offer leadership, enforce discipline, and maintain their prestige and authority. Psychological superiority is more important that in physical size or strength. Moreover, the modern dog’s dependence on his owner is as much emotional as it is physical. Your dog will love and respect you more if you live up to his leader image of you. Be dependable and consistent so that he can trust you.

You must be reasonable and fair in order to avoid offending his sense of justice. But above all, do not think it is a kindness to let your dog always have his way. In their wild state, dogs instinctively seek and accept leadership as well as a strict social code. In fact, discipline and obedience are probably more natural to them than indulgence, which they have experienced only as modern pets.

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Territorial instinct has a profound influence on a dog’s behavior, as it has on ours. It is related to the survival instinct and is therefore very powerful and vital to his existence. Puppies as young as 2 or 3 weeks old display their sense of territory by annexing a certain corner of the nest, a bed, cushion, or chair as their personal domain. Their territory grows bigger as they do on until adulthood when they transfer their territorial instinct to their owner’s home, and their pack instinct to their human family.

Dogs respect man made boundaries such as fences, walls, and gates, but they also establish markers of their own. Which they mark with urine and visit regularly and refresh as necessary. Domesticated dogs are respectful of their neighbor’s territory as they are jealous of their own, and seldom engage in territorial warfare. In the animal world, an intruder is always psychologically inferior to an individual who is on his home territory. Under these conditions, a tiny terrier can chase away a Great Dane.

Generally speaking, dogs are most aggressive on their own territory, most submissive on another dog’s territory, and most sociable on neutral ground. An old family dog will make friends more easily with a new puppy if the two are introduced on neutral ground before the newcomers are taken home. The territorial instinct varies in intensity and quality from one breed and individual to another. Still, in all dogs, as in all humanity, there is a territorial instinct. Oddly enough, both will accept with tolerance, and sometimes even welcome, intrusions by innocent infants, unthreatening inferiors, and attractive members of the opposite sex.

Finally, dogs possess an instinctive loyalty that is much stronger than our own. Once a dog has accepted someone as his master, it is very difficult for him to switch his devotion to another. Better food, greater comfort, kindness and understanding may not succeed in swaying his allegiance even from an unworthy owner. On the other hand, if you adopt a dog who has been happy in his previous home, give him plenty of time to transfer his loyalty to you, you will have a friend that would never fail you.

5 Natural Ways To Treat Anemia In Dog

Anemia is a condition that is commonly caused by blood loss from wounds or parasites such as worms and fleas. Symptoms of anemia in dogs include white or pale gums, weakness, and a fast pulse. Sometimes this condition indicates a more serious illness such as toxicity that results from a drug exposure. However, the more simple and common cause of anemia which is blood loss can be easily treated with a view toward promoting the growth of new red blood cells.

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You need to give your dog a special diet rich in iron, protein, and vitamin B12. The following lists of foods and supplements are especially helpful and provide the necessary nutrients that your dog needs to treat anemia.

1. Beef liver which contains iron, protein, B complex, and B12.
2. Kelp powder which contains iodine and other trace minerals.
3. Green vegetables which contains iron and other minerals.
4. Nutritional yeast along with B12 which offers the same benefits as the liver.
5. Vitamin C, from 500 to 2,000 milligrams per day (depending on the dog’s size) which helps with the absorption of iron from the intestinal tract.

If the condition is caused by parasites, then you will need to nip the problem in the bud and treat the parasite infestation first before using any other forms of treatment.

Bones for Your Dog – Delicious Treat or A Deadly Snack?

There is a difference of opinion among canine experts as to whether bones should be given to a dog raw, cooked, hard, or soft, and even whether they should be given at all. On one point, however, there is total agreement, never give a dog splintering bones from chicken, pork, fowl, and rabbit, (although chicken bones that have been cooked in a pressure cooker until they are very soft can be quite nourishing and safe).

A marrow bone is the traditional symbol of a treat for a dog, and he obviously appreciates it. It may be too big and hard for small dogs. In fact, large breeds generally handle bones much better than small ones. Bones that are mostly cartilage, such as spinal and shoulder bones of veal, knuckle bones, and soft rib bones, are good chewing material that can be entirely consumed.

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The real danger is intestinal compaction, especially in small dogs, if the masticated bone has not been mixed with other residue in the dog’s stomach. A small amount should cause no trouble if it is given right after a meal. Chop and steak bones are more dangerous. Careful eaters simply clean off the meat and fat, but greedy gobblers run the risk of internal injury from jagged bone splinters. The same is true of a leg of lamb bone.

What is the best policy to follow with a dog of your own? A teething puppy between four and six months of age should always have a bone, real or imitation, to chew on. You might give an adult dog a suitable bone as on occasional treat – for example, once a week. It will give him enormous pleasure, will help to keep his teeth clean and free from tartar, and will occupy him for several hours. But a nylon bone offers the same advantages without the risk!

Your Dogs Intelligence – Could Dogs Be Smarter than Their Owners?

The intelligence of the dog is among the highest of all the animals, maybe higher than we give him credit for. Although his brain is proportionately only half as large as ours, he is certainly the most intelligent of domestic animals.

As with humans, individual intelligence varies greatly according to inherited genes. While no one breed can be said to be more intelligent that another, some breeds that have been selectively bred for work ability are often brighter and more receptive than those bred primarily for purely physical attributes.

Whether a dog is a mixed breed for purebred, studies have shown that neither is much more intelligent than the other. However, dogs that have been exposed to a more varied lifestyle, both indoors and out, and with both human and animal interaction, does show more intelligent behavior.

Simply put, giving your dog an opportunity to investigate and manipulate all sorts of objects, to explore all sorts of places, to share all sorts of experiences with you will stimulate his or her intelligence. Aside from getting a lot more out of life, your dog will be eager to learn more and he will learn with increasing ease and rapidity. Nothing is sadder and more wasteful than an intelligent dog that is confined in a kennel and deprived of mental stimulation.

Despite opinions to the contrary, dogs are endowed with an elementary reasoning power. Anyone who has ever owned a dog has often seen him size up a situation and then taken some logical action. Guide dogs for the blind, as well as working and hunting dogs of many breeds constantly have to use their judgment and make decisions.

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Memory is an important component of intelligence. The dog’s memory for scents is extraordinary. His visual memory is only fair, but his memory for sounds is very good, since he can remember and identify familiar voices even after an absence of many years. While he builds up a large store of identifiable sounds without the slightest effort, remembering different words requires more concentration.

The dog’s capacity for learning is more a matter of memory than of true understanding. He will remember the sequence of cause and effect in his actions, but he is unable to draw broad conclusions from his experience. The greater the variety of experiences and contact with others they have, the quicker they learn, and the more they retain.

Dogs are bound by nature to remain intellectually inferior to man, but we owe them a chance to develop their native intelligence by training, teaching, and working with them as much and as often as we can.

Guide To Airedale Terrier

The Airedale Terrier is not called the “King of Terriers” for nothing. This dog is the tallest terrier from the entire breed family. One of its primary progenitors are the Black and Tan and the old English Terriers. They were medium-sized dogs whom highly admired by Yorkshire hunters that would go after all sorts of prey, ranging from small rabbits to fox.

Not only were they reliable hunters of land animals, these Terriers were also prized as great bird retrievers. Sometime during the mid-1800s, many of these Terriers were bred with Otterhounds. The goal was to create a dog that had increased water hunting skills as well as a stronger sense of tracking. The result was a sharp looking dog that became excellent otter hunters.

These otter hunting dogs became the breed that we know of today referred to as the Airedale Terrier. Their name was actually called “Waterside Terriers” at first, but was changed to the Airedale in 1878.

Terrier enthusiasts began to show these dogs in ringside competitions. To further the appreciable beauty of the Airedale Terrier, they were mixed with both Irish and Bull Terriers. By the early 1900s, the well-known Terrier and champion “Master Briar” became the father of today’s Airedale Terriers.

Master Briar produced dogs that highly influenced the breed in the United States. They picked up popularity as strong hunters, proving themselves to be worthy at hunting big game. However, after the end of World War I their numbers declined and today they are a rare breed to come across, yet their great reputation remains the same.

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Personality

The Airedale Terrier is considered to be the most versatile of the Terrier dog breed group. They are adventurous, bold, and love to play. Highly intelligent and a bit stubborn, training may take some time. However, with the right amount of training time, these dogs are obedient, loyal, and make excellent watchdogs. And so long as the Airedale Terrier gets plenty of mental and physical stimulation, they can make obedient house pets.

Taking Care Of Your Airedale Terrier

Airedale Terrier dogs require a lot of exercise. Without enough physical exertion, they tend to get bored easily and can be quite destructive, if left alone inside the house. Long walks or active games should provide plenty of stimulation to can take care of these needs.

Airedale Terriers are able to live outside during cold climates but like all house dogs, it’s always best to have them sleep inside with the family. Grooming takes a bit of extra work than most breeds, due to its long wiry coat. A thorough combing 2 – 3 times per week is ideal. Clipping and scissoring is also recommended about every eight weeks or so.

Health Information

The average lifespan for healthy Airedale Terrier dog is between 10 and 14 years. They are a very healthy breed in which CHD is the only major health issue that may come up. Minor concerns include gastric torsion and hypothyroidism.

Do You Need a Dog Trainer?

Is your dog not behaving? Does your loving pooch have a tendency to jump up on visitors as his way of welcoming them? Are bathroom accidents becoming more frequent from your beloved dog? If you answer yes to any of these questions, a dog trainer may be just what you and your dog need. By all means, do not get rid of your loving dog, hire a trainer and get rid of the bad habits.

Dog trainers specialize in removing the bad habits from dogs. Whether you have an inside or an outside pooch, a trainer will be able to help you. When you speak to your trainer about training your dog, be sure and let him know just exactly what the bad habits are your dog has, that need breaking. Tell your trainer your dog is uncontrollable when you take him for a walk, and that he is overbearing in a welcoming sort of way, to guest that visit your home. Do not forget to tell them about the bathroom accidents either. Do not worry, your trainer will not think of you as a bad pet owner, but rather as one that needs help. That is what trainers are for, to help.

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Having your dog trained will make you and him happier. As well as your guest that are frequently jumped on and greeted with an innocent sloppy wet tongue. Once your dog has had a training session with the dog trainer, the trainer will tell you about the new commands and things your dog has learned. Be sure to ask any questions you might have, and take notes on what the trainer tells you, so that you do not have a confused pooch later. Hopefully you can find a trainer that works with you and your dog once he is trained. Ensuring that you know what commands are for what, and when he deserves a doggie treat.

Where are you going to find a dog trainer? Ask around at the veterinarian’s office when you take your dog in for check up. Notice the well behaved dogs, and be sure to ask their owners if they used a trainer and how you can contact them. Your veterinarian may even have a recommendation himself.

4 To 8 Dog Agility Jumps Makes Ideal Training

We are often asked, “How many jumps should I start with?” You can never have too many single jumps to practice agility. A good starting place is four jumps. This is the absolute minimum number of jumps that we recommend.

You can teach a variety of skills, drills, and exercises with four jumps. Four jumps will allow you to work on a short jump chute or jump grid. You can setup a “box” with your jumps and practice handling, collection, and 270 degree jumps. You can teach your dog jumping left and right. You can be outside the box and send your dog or you can handle from the inside of the box. Your jumps can be setup in a horizontal line, so that you can practice serpentines and threadles.

Go the next step and get eight jumps. Now you can setup two boxes with one introductory jump. You’ve now multiplied your drills that you can practice with your dog. Your jump grids can be of recommended size and quantity of jumps. You can also setup your jumps in a circle with the jump bars perpendicular to the circle or on the circumference of the circle. This pattern also enables you to train a variety of skills.

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Your next consideration is a double jump and a triple jump. You could set two or three single jumps together to make your expanded jump, but having double and triple jump in your course work is really valuable to practice. We’ve seen many dogs run a clean course and the last obstacle is a triple and the dog is not prepared for it, and bang, down comes the bar.

You can really be ahead of the pack and have two sets of eight jumps. This is the ultimate in training because you can keep a jump grip up at all times that is separate from your course work, and have eight single jumps to have for course work. And when you include your double and triple, you can really practice all the jumping skills and drills necessary to get you those “Qs”.

Bone Treat For Your Dog

Give your dog a bone about twice a week as a special treat. Dogs love large beef bones, raw chicken necks, and the tips off chicken wings. If you are not sure how long they have been in the supermarket case, douse them with boiling water to kill any bacteria before feeding.

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The benefit of feeding bones is that they give your dog beautiful, pearly white teeth that do not need to be cleaned. However, feeding too many bones will give him constipation and hard, chalky stools. Also, be careful to give your dog only large bones that cannot splinter.

When you give your dog a bone, leave him alone. Dogs get possessive about their bones. They are one of the few items that may cause dogs to growl at you if you try to take one away from them. It is a very special treat, and he wants to be in a place to relax and enjoy it. Let your dog go to his crate, which is the perfect place for him to enjoy his bone in peace. Give him a few hours to indulge himself. After a few days of chewing a fresh bone, it loses its magic, and most dogs will allow you to pick them up or handle them.

Your Dogs Shedding and Bald Spots

If your dog sheds a lot it does not necessarily denote ill health. Dogs that spend a lot of their time indoors are exposed to electric lights and central heat and air which can throw off their normal shedding schedule that nature built in. However, profuse shedding may have other causes like an unbalanced diet, a kidney or bladder infection or a parasitic ailment.

If your dogs shedding leads to bald spots you should seek help from your veterinarian as soon as possible. All severe shedding conditions are either parasitic or non-parasitic. Parasitic means caused by parasites such as mites or fleas. Non-parasitic means conditions created by a hormonal imbalance and or poor diet, which can easily be treated with vitamins and a more controlled diet.

Eczema is a symptom of an underlying disorder, usually dietary, rather than a disease. In older animals and altered ones, it may be caused by a hormonal imbalance due to a change of body chemistry. The skin becomes scaly and the hair falls out in patches. You must correct the cause by hormone injections or a change in diet, usually by adding fat supplements of Vitamin A and E.

Eczema can also be caused by fleabite allergy, or a parasitic condition. However, these bald spots usually appear suddenly and resemble lesions, or burns. To treat these, after veterinarian diagnosis, you must eliminate the fleas and use a local application of antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory medicines.

Bald spots can also be caused by mange. There are two types of mange, ot mange, Sarcoptic mange or “Scabies”, which has a musty odor, often starts on the head and spreads to the ears, tail, the abdomen, chest and under the front legs. Skin eruptions may take the form of red dots or blisters, then scabs. Your veterinarian can provide medicated baths; generally sulfur preparations and anti-itch topicals.

The second type of mange is Follicular or Demodectic mange or “red mange”, caused by a different family of mites that burrows into the hair follicles and most often attacks young puppies. Entire litters can be born with it. It is more serious and persistent that the other variety. In the most serious cases, pustules dot the skin where the hair has fallen out. Veterinary treatment will include oral medications and external treatments to kill the mites, but this type of mange takes a long time to cure.

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Lastly, he may have contracted ringworm, a contagious fungal infection, (non-parasitic), that grows on hair follicles, rather like athletes foot. It is characterized by ring-shaped red patches covered with scales, and may be dry or moist, usually starting on the head, neck, and legs. Your vet will advise strict anticontagion measures, since it is communicable to humans. Treatments include oral medications, anti-fungal shampoos or dips, and frequent applications of iodine.

Remember, shedding is a symptom of an underlying condition that is best diagnosed by your Veterinarian usually by microscopic analysis of skin scrapings and or blood tests. While bald spots may not be life threatening, the animal is suffering and the conditions usually only get worse with time, so asking your veterinarian for his opinion is more sensible than just worrying about it.

4 Types Of Leash Material

The length and width of a leash has to do with the height of the handler and the size and weight of your dog. A tall handler with a small breed of dog will need a very long leash in order to keep the leash slack enough to offer comfort and taut enough to have control of his dog. A short handler will need a short lead if they have a large breed dog. For example, a person who is five feet ten inches tall with a dog sixteen inches high, weighing thirty pounds, would pick a six-foot leash that is one-half inch wide. Heavier dogs need wider, stronger leads. And keep in mind that with age, maturity, and growth, equipment use is changed from the soft and frequently colorful puppy equipment to more functional attire.

Leather Leashes: Most dog owners prefer harness leather leashes over latigo (typical) leather although latigo is strong enough for most breeds of dog. You may also prefer to have your obedience leash to be braided on both ends with a quality brass snap and no stitches or rivets. Personally, when I use a lead for protection training, I prefer the lead to be double stitched and riveted. These leads are one-half inch thick and three-quarters of an inch wide and four to six feet in length.

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Cotton Leashes: Dog handlers have always used these leads for their durability and cost effectiveness. They are a comfort in your hand and are easy to find in any local pet supply store. You should still look for the leash with the brass clip. It may cost a bit more but is apt to last longer.

Nylon Leashes: Nylon leashes are very strong but can be a little rough on the hand if your dog forges on its leash. Advantages for a puppy are that nylon is hard to chew up, therefore there will be less mouthing on the lead. If necessary, the leash is porous enough to soak in taste deterrent and is washable.

Chain Leashes: Chain leashes definitely curb mouthy leash behavior. These leashes come in a variety of sizes. Should you choose a chain lead, be sure to pick one strong enough for your dog. Be sensible and avoid getting a tow truck line for your dog. For most situations this is an uncomfortable choice of leads, but some people value their strength. This is due in fact because chain leashes do tend to be strong.

Body Language: Your Dog’s Movements & What They Mean

Dogs use their bodies and paws to express a variety of different things. Below are some examples and what they mean.

Dog crouches with front legs extended, rear up, and head near the ground: This is the classic play-bow and means simply “I want to play!”

Stiff-legged, upright posture or slow, stiff-legged movement forward: “I am in charge around here!” and “I challenge you.” A dominant dog will use this posture to indicate assertion of authority and a willingness to fight for it.

Body slightly sloped forward, feet braced: “I accept your challenge and am ready to fight!”

Dog rolls on side or exposes underside: “Let us not argue” or “I am not a threat to you” or “I accept that you are in charge here.” This is a submissive response to avert conflict. Many dogs adopt this posture in a fairly relaxed and contented manner when they are around their pack leader. When your dog rolls on his back for a belly rub, he is actually accepting you as leader of the pack.

Dog places head on another dog’s shoulder or places paw on the back of another dog: “I want you to know who is the boss around here.” These gestures are commonly used by dominant dogs, pack leaders, and dogs that have aspirations of becoming a pack leader.

Mouthing: This shows up in dog-human interactions as the dog taking the handler’s hand in his mouth or, while walking, taking the lead in the mouth. Mouthing can be a serious sign of dominance challenging and shows that the dog does not accept the human as pack leader.

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Dog places paw on master’s knee: “Look, I am here” or “Pay attention to me.” This attention-seeking signal has many variations. They include pawing the air in front of their master or sliding the head under the master’s hand.

Hair bristles on back and shoulders: This is a sign of anticipated aggression. A ridge of hair bristling down the back is a sign that says “Do not push me, I am angry!” When the bristling extends to the shoulders it means “I have had it with you” and is a sign of an imminent attack.

Dog sits with one front paw slightly raised: This is another sign of stress but is combined with insecurity. It means “I am anxious, uneasy and concerned.”

Dog rolls on his back and rubs it on the ground: This is sometimes preceded by nose rubbing where the dog pushes his face, and possibly his chest against the ground in a rubbing motion or rubs the face with a forepaw, from eyes to nose. They often follow feeding or occur as the dog’s owner begins to prepare food. However they also can occur following or in anticipation of other pleasant activities.

Scraping the ground and ripping the turf with the paws: This is usually after the dog has defecated but may occur at other times. Dogs have glands on the bottom of their feet that provide each with a unique scent. What a dog is saying here is ” I was here and I am leaving my calling card!”

Your Dogs Water and Beverages – Things Pet Owners Should Consider

A constant supply of fresh water is essential to your dog’s good health and comfort. Water is very important, representing and estimated 70 percent of the dog’s weight. Like man, a dog can go without food for a surprisingly long time, but if he is deprived of water, he can’t survive for more than a few days, or even hours, in a hot, dry environment.

A dog’s water consumption varies according to the climate to his activity, and to the composition of his meals. Heat and exercise dehydrate him quickly. He gets very thirsty in cars or any confined space. However, excessive thirst for not good reason should be reported to your vet, because it may be an early symptom of diabetes or kidney trouble.

At home he should have a clean, full water bowl next to his food dish, another in his play area, and possibly a third one that is accessible at night. Away from home the problem is more difficult. A thirsty dog is attracted to water in the gutter, in stagnant pools and rain puddles. Clean rain water is fine, but hard to find.

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Caustic chemicals used to melt snow on streets and sidewalks, weed-killers and insecticides on lawns and golf courses contaminate most standing water and should be avoided. Try to train your dog to drink only from his own bowl or what you offer him. Try to keep a water-filled plastic container with you or in your car, especially if you plan on a lot of walking or running during hot weather.

Milk is the only liquid, aside from water, that appeals to dogs and still agrees with them, (although it may cause loose stools). They are seldom tempted by other drinks and particularly dislike carbonated drinks. Milk is always another good source of protein but should not be used as a substitute for meat. Most any flavored drink should be avoided, as it only tends to irritate the kidneys, causing frequent urination and dehydration.

4 Tips To Aid Your Dog Of Diarrhea

Is your dog having a problem with diarrhea? Does he have “accidents” while trying to get outside to go to the bathroom? While your dog may not loosing too much sleep over the problem, there is no doubt that you are not happy with the runny mess being made in your house!

Diarrhea in dogs often happen because of eating something rotten from the outside, or even from getting into a chemical inside of the house. There are times when he may have an intestinal virus that could be the cause. Perhaps you suddenly changed his diet which may be a contributing factor to the problem.

Below are several tips in which you can use to effectively help your dog recover from diarrhea:

1. Do not let your dog have a continual feeding of food in the dish. If you stop putting food in your pet, then he will stop having to use the bathroom. So it is obvious that once you notice your dog has the runs, simply stop feeding him for 24 hours after the onset of diarrhea. This alone could be enough to knock out the problem. However, if after 24 hours have gone by and there is still a problem with your dog’s bowel movement, then contact your vet immediately because something could be seriously wrong.

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2. Try feeding your dog bland foods for a while to keep her stomach calm. When your dog is ready to begin eating again you may want to have a week at feeding bland foods to keep her digestive system calm. Such bland foods may be skinless chicken or cooked white rice. Another ideal food that fits perfectly for the sour stomach is boiled hamburger meat.

3. Remove any dairy products from your dog’s diet. Because most dogs lack the enzyme “lactase”, they have a very difficult time digesting milk. Lactase is needed to properly digest the sugar in milk.. If you are feeding your dog any type of milk product and she has diarrhea, then completely eradicate milk from her food choices. You will see dramatic improvement within days.

4. Keep your dog’s system flowing with plenty of liquids. When your dog has diarrhea, his body is depleted of liquids and essential fluids. Be sure to keep your dog’s water bowl full at all times. And like people, dog’s also loose a lot of minerals when their body is depleted of fluids, so it is a good idea to keep a separate bowl filled with Gatorade. Gatorade is an excellent liquid that will help your dog’s body with getting enough of the potassium and sodium that it lost.

Some Information Regarding the Kerry Blue Terrier Pet Dog

The Blue Kerry terrier pet dog is one of the most mysterious breeds of terriers. This is because of the fact that even though the breed has been known by the Irish for at leas 150 years, nobody really knows where they came from or how they were first bred.

Various legends are told in order to explain the appearance of the Kerry blue terrier breed. Some say that the peasants bred them for hunting purposes since noblemen monopolized the use of wolfhounds. Thus, noblemen hunted with their wolfhounds while peasants poached with their Kerries.

Another legend speaks of a wrecked Russian ship that contained a blue dog. This dog swam into Irish shores and there, mated with the local terrier population. This, of course, started the genetic pool of blue Kerry terriers.

Whatever the case, the blue Kerry terrier sure has a colorful history. It started as a working dog, helping hunters bring in prey. It would also be trained as a police dog by the English. Today, it is considered to be one of the best breeds of dogs that one can own. This is in part of its excellent abilities as a watchdog.

One thing that is so cool about owning a Blue Kerry terrier pet dog is the fact that this breed is adaptable to every situation. It can be a hardworking hunter’s dog. It can become the vigilant watchdog. If you want companionship, it can also provide that. People who are fortunate to have a Blue Kerry terrier pet dog even say that once you are a Kerry lover, you are forever a Kerry lover.

There are some terrier characteristics which may cause a bit of trouble for your dog. Like all terriers, the Blue Kerry terrier pet dog can get into fights with other dogs. In order to prevent this, you need to make sure that the Blue Kerry terrier pet dog is properly socialized. Usually this is done by the breeder.

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Most people, when they are getting a pet often ask the question of whether or not a pet can be housebroken easily. Thankfully enough, the Blue Kerry terrier pet dog has a disposition that is easily house trained. The Blue Kerry terrier pet dog is actually quite eager to learn. This means that you will be able to train it very quickly.

Although a Blue Kerry terrier can become an excellent playmate for children, it must be taken that the children do not show any cruelty to the dog.

The Blue Kerry terrier is also one of the more hardy types of terriers. This is because the Blue Kerry terrier has very few genetic problems. Before buying one, however, you need to ask for eye certifications and hip x-rays. These are the most commonly afflicted parts of the Blue Kerry terrier.

A Blue Kerry terrier is not really for everyone. Some people may find it a bit too playful. Some people may not really get used to the Blue Kerry terrier’s curiosity. People may not really understand its habit of following everyone around. Today, the fate of the Blue Kerry terrier dog lies in the hands of the breeders who care for them, nurture them, and make sure that they have great homes to stay in.

Your Pet’s Health – Protect Your Children

If we had to name two things children want, it could be easily covered under the titles, pets and toys. We all loved toys as children and still love our pets even as adults. Pets play an important role in their owners’ lives. Some pets have even been known to save lives and learn to dial 911 in an emergency. As companions, they provide us with warmth and friendship, as well as undying loyalty. Some pets have special training and can assist people with disabilities. Others are great hunters and protectors of our property and our families.

For a child, a pet means even more. For children, a pet represents many things. They learn about relationships, compassion, responsibility, love, and so much more. It is not impossible to raise a child without a pet, but their lives are greatly enhanced if they are allowed to have one.

No one can downplay the significance of owning a pet. The benefits far outweigh the pitfalls. However we have to know how to be safe when choosing a pet – especially when we have children. Not only do we have to choose the right pet for our family, we also must keep our pets in good health to protect others in our household. And, keeping a pet healthy can be expensive. Certain types of pets require more care than others and you should always consider whether or not you can afford not only the purchase of your pet, but also the ongoing care they will require.

However, your concern for your child’s health is directly related to your concern for their pet’s health. There are diseases that a child or even an adult can contract from pets. Keeping your pet healthy is very important to your child’s health.

Zoonotic diseases or Zoonosis are terms used to describe diseases that can be transferred from animals to humans. Normal contact with an animal or contact with an animal’s bodily fluids can result in the transfer of disease.

I don’t want to scare parents away from getting a pet for their child because as I said, the benefits of owning a pet far outweigh the dangers and drawbacks if you take the necessary precautions. Here are 10 tips you should follow when choosing a pet for your child.

1. Do not buy a pet from disreputable dealers who keep large numbers of animals caged together waiting to be sold.

2. Always check the facilities where the animal was kept while waiting to be sold. If the conditions there are bad, then likely the condition and the care of the animal prior to sale was likely bad also.

3. Find out what care has been provided to the animals, by a licensed Veterinarian, prior to being sold.

4. Read whatever tips you can find about the type of pet you are purchasing for your child. You should know any diseases that type of pet is known to be susceptible to. You should know all about the proper shelter, food, and care your child’s pet will require. Reading up on this prior to purchase is a good idea, so you will know what you are getting into.

5. Clean your pet’s shelter and make sure all feces are removed daily.

6. Make sure you have a qualified Veterinarian examine the pet before you hand it over to your child.

7. Bathe your child’s pet regularly. Keep in mind your child will be in constant contact with their pet. Whatever the pet gets into, your child gets into.

8. Make sure your children get into the habit of washing their hands every time they handle their pet.

9. Stay current with all vaccinations and checkups your Veterinarian recommends. If your pet seems ill, keep your child away from them until you can get them to a Veterinarian.

10. Teach your child how to handle your pet to avoid having it injure your child. Make sure they know not to squeeze it too tightly, pull on its extremities, agitate it, or tease it unnecessarily.

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These 10 tips I am providing you are by no means all the things you need to be aware of. Specific types of pets have different rules you need to be aware of about handling and caring for them. You should include your child in the learning process where possible so they understand why those rules are necessary. Read up on the pet you are bringing into your home and spend time discussing your questions and concerns with your veterinarian.

I hope this article has been helpful to you as a parent. Remember, know what you are getting into before you choose a pet for your child. What you don’t know could cost you in more ways than one.

Your Pets And Allergic Dermatitis

Allergic dermatitis is one of the most common skin diseases that may pester or affect your beloved dogs or cats. You should be informed, however, allergic dermatitis is a serious chronic skin disease that can never be cured, only treated or controlled.

Literally, the term ‘allergic dermatitis’ is derived from root words allergy, which means sensitivity or physical reaction to certain substances, and dermatitis, which means inflammation that is normally and usually exhibited or found in the skin.

Hence, allergic dermatitis can be accurately defined as skin inflammation caused by exposure to strong and harsh substances called ‘allergens’ in medical jargons. These substances are often absorbed through the skin, inhaled or taken in as food.

Symptoms of allergic dermatitis

The most common symptom or sign that your cat or dog is infected with allergic dermatitis is excessive itching. Dogs usually chew, bite, lick or scratch the itchy part of their skin, which will consequently bring about skin redness, open sores or, to your dismay, hair loss.

In dogs and cats, however, sometimes, it will be hard to differentiate if their itching is caused by fleas or allergic dermatitis. If the pet’s itching persist and there are no signs that it is caused by fleas, then, automatically, it is allergic dermatitis.

The most common spots where allergic dermatitis manifests in your pets are the armpit areas, the feet and the face. Be cautious and alert because if allergic dermatitis is not treated immediately, it may infect the entire body. Some pets would also tend to itch, but not indicate any skin problems. In such cases, a visit to the veterinarian would be advised.

Specifically, for dogs, allergic dermatitis is manifested by redness in the face, dark or stained areas on the foot due to licking excessively and oily skin due to chronic rubbing.

Cats do not get allergic dermatitis as frequently as dogs do, but when they are infected with it, some additional symptoms may be observed. Among them are the appearance of small bumps all over the body, lip ulcers, neck excoriation and patches of lost hair.

Causes of allergic dermatitis

Several causes are cited for the occurrence of allergic dermatitis in pets. The most basic is hereditary or genetic factors, meaning, it runs in the pet’s family.

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Another is the inhalation or intake of allergens like grass, tree pollens, feathers, cigarette smoke, weed, house dust and wool. Take note that several of these also cause harsh allergic reactions to hyper-sensitive humans.

Treatment

Since allergic dermatitis is treatable but never curable, medications available in the market would only help ease your pet’s discomfort until the symptoms fade away.

It would be best to seek the help of your trusted veterinarian to get prescriptions for such medications and know their accurate and safe administration.

Since medicines for pets are not easily distributed, it would help if you would also ask your veterinarian where the drug shops for pet care are. These drug stores usually practice strict drug distribution practices to secure safety both of the pet and the owner.

Cortisones, antihistamines, anti-fungals and antibiotics are the usual drugs prescribed by veterinarians for pets with allergic dermatitis.

Prevention

To avoid the occurrence of allergic dermatitis in your pets, be sure they would not be exposed to allergens identified.

Clean your house thoroughly to get rid of dusts and pollen that might arouse allergic dermatitis among your pets. Give your pet a good and quick bath after a short outside trip to eliminate pollens and dusts that might have been stuck through their furs.

3 Important Things To Remember When Training Your Puppy

There are as many ways to raise a puppy as there are to raising a child. In fact, one way per family in general! But most of us agree that when it comes to children, certain things are universal and undisputed. Here are three things that a lot of people just do not think of when it comes to raising their dogs, however. How many times have we heard, “My dog just won’t listen to me”, or “He just won’t behave!”

1. Dogs do not understand English until we teach them.

The thing we all love about puppies the most is the way they live for us, the way they focus all they have on us, the way our lives become theirs. in the beginning, they study us to learn our body language, our facial expressions and our language. Until we teach them the English language, it’s all they have. If we say, “Wanna go out?” one day, “Have to go potty?” the next day, and, “Hafta pee?” the third day, if they DO figure out what we want, it is because we have picked up the leash and moved toward the door with a happy face! If you want to speed up his training by three-fold, teach him YOUR language. Pick a command for EACH behavior and stick with it. Tell all in your family to use the same words and commands, and your puppy will amaze you at how much faster he learns.

2. A young puppy’s metabolism is racing along faster than we think.

The younger your puppy is, the faster he is growing, the more food and water he needs to fuel his metabolism, and the more often he has to go potty. Do not punish your puppy when he makes a house-breaking mistake. These are YOUR fault. Your puppy’s age in weeks and his breed size determine how often he must go out. Once an hour is not too often for a large 6-week old puppy, especially if it is summertime. Dogs love the exciting smells outdoors, so there is no excuse to not have him housebroken by 7-8 weeks of age. Right after a nap, after he eats and after grooming are the key times, and he will signal you. If he is happily chewing a toy and gets up suddenly with his nose to the floor, move quickly! And every time he goes potty outside, praise him to high heaven! “What a good BOYY!”, “GOOD go potty!” and the like. Dogs love our happy faces, and they will do anything to get it.

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3. Dogs live for our facial expressions and body language.

Because of this, the worst punishment you ever need to give your dog is a scowl and to turn away from him. You can see his tail fall down and his face get so sad. He will learn the lesson, I guarantee it. But his attention span is only 3-5 minutes, so do not scorn him any longer. Love him up and give him your happy face again. Physical punishment is never necessary. Use consistent commands and loving praise and he will know what you want of him before you know. He will become a master of your body language and facial expressions in no time at all.

Naturally there are many aspects of training your puppy well. Loving kindness works just as well for puppies as it does with children, creating a happy, well-adjusted and obedient dog for life. These three important tips, used consistently with confidence, will start him well on his way.

Your Pets and Arthritis

Arthritis is the term used in both human and veterinary medicine to describe any type of joint inflammation. Several types exist, including rheumatoid, degenerative, and infectious arthritis, each having a different cause. Infections, autoimmune diseases, trauma, and certain drugs, such as sulfa antibiotics, can promote joint inflammation.

The clinical signs associated with joint disease are basically the same. Stiffness or lameness involving one or more limbs is often the most obvious sign of a joint problem, usually aggravated by cold weather and/or exercise. New medications and surgical techniques have been introduced in the treatment of canine joint disease.

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Osteoarthritis, or degenerative joint disease, describes the condition in which a cartilage defects or erosion occurs. It can be inherited but is usually a part of the normal aging process in older dogs. Infectious arthritis is caused by bacteria that gain entrance to the blood stream causing inflammation in one or more joints. Bacteria from the gums, periodontal disease, or Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease can cause damage to the cartilage and joint structure.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune-related disease seen frequently in toy breeds. Caused by an overactive immune system, antibodies coalesce within the joints causing inflammation. Fever and depression are also features of these diseases. Hip dysphasia refers to a hereditary arthritic condition which begins as a partial dislocation of the hip joints. In time the cartilages lining the joint surfaces wear down because of abnormal strain on the joints.

The key to lessoning the effects of any form of arthritis is early detection and treatment. Your veterinarian can prescribe antibiotics, immunosuppressive drugs, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, as well as vitamins and supplements, and even cortisone if needed. The real key is you and your observations to your veterinarian.

Blue Pit Bull Is Often More Notorious For Attacking People Than For Its Other Characteristics

Over the last decade or so the Blue Pit Bull has become a much more popular dog breed and the new interest in this breed is also not showing any signs of waning, and part of the reason behind this rise in popularity is the media coverage given to the Pit Bull, though unfortunately for the wrong reasons such as when it attacks people. Still, it is not really a dog that will attack people too often and the episodes of attacks are rather few and far between, but which, when they occur, are sure to make media headlines.

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Product Of Interbreeding

In any case the Blue Pit Bull is the product of interbreeding among different species of Pit Bulls and the aim of such inter-breeding is to produce Blue Pit Bulls that are sure to have certain desired characteristics. However, hundreds of years ago, this practice was prohibited in Ireland since the pedigrees were a secret not to be let out to everyone and thus it was essentially a protected dog breed. However, when this kind of inter-breeding takes place, recessive traits are found including the Blue Pit Bull which is essentially a diluted Black Pit Bull.

Also, it is necessary to realize that when Pit Bulls are bred for several, and some would say, too many generations, the Blue Pit Bull produced may actually suffer from several problems, some of which are known while others may be unknown, which can explain why these types of Pit Bulls are so overly aggressive.

Obtaining a Blue Pit Bull is often quite difficult because such a breed is not easy to find and it is also often in high demand and thus one cannot easily find a Blue Pit Bull whenever one wants one. Nevertheless, Pit Bull breeders are constantly trying to breed the blue pedigree in order to produce more of them, though there is no guaranteed equation that will result in a Blue Pit Bull. Thus, if you are on the lookout for a Blue Pit Bull, you should expect a lengthy wait before one becomes available and your best bet would be to join the list of others waiting to obtain one.

However, even when the Blue Pit Bull becomes available for sale, he is sure to be very expensive and high priced and if you opt for the first choice from a litter, the price can become prohibitively expensive, and so, you may need to settle for one that is a low choice. In any case, the Blue Pit Bull could cost anywhere from two thousand dollars upwards and you may also be asked to make a down payment, much like as you do when purchasing a home.

3 Easy To Teach Dog Tricks

To teach your dog tricks even easy ones you need to have some small reward treats, be in a quiet suitable place and keep the training sessions to 10 – 15 minutes or your dog will start to get board, remember when he gets something right lots of praise and a reward treat, just be careful not to get him over excited or he will loose concentration.

Getting your dog to give you his paw, first get your dog to sit, then as you say the word ‘paw’ take your dogs paw in your hand, give the dog a treat, repeat this, after a few times do not take his paw so quickly, say the word, count to one then take it, you should notice he is bringing his paw up as you say the word if he does not go back to saying it at the same time, do it a few more times then slow your response again. After 2 or 3 sessions most dogs pick this one up quite happily.

The high five, like a lot of tricks the high five is a progression of an earlier trick, in this cast the paw trick. Hold a treat in your fingers and raise your hand slightly higher than you would for the paw trick. You dog will think you want to do the paw trick and will reach for the treat with his paw as we taught him earlier, as he reaches up you say “high five” and give him the treat. Once your dog has mastered the paw trick this one should be very easy to learn and with just a few sessions he will be doing it on hand signal rather than voice control.

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Getting your dog to jump through a hoop, before you start this one I would just like to ask you to be a little sensible and not hold the hoop too high as you do not want your dog to heart himself while doing the trick. Sit your dog on one side of a hoola hoop, get the dogs attention on your hand on the other side of the hoop take a treat in your hand and give the dog the command to release him from the sit, at first he may attempt to go around or under the hoop, if this happens start again, your dog wants the treat and will soon learn that going around or under does not get it so he will soon start going through it, when he does say hoopla and give him the treat. He will soon be jumping through the hoop on the command of hoopla. When I started doing this trick I had a medium sized dog (a Labrador) so I started with the hoop 6 inches from the ground and slowly raised it to waist height, if you have a smaller dog you might want to start with the hoop touching the ground so the dog just goes through the hoop and then slowly raise it as he gets used to the trick.

Your Questions On Canine Hip Dysplasia – Answered

What is canine hip dysplasia?

Canine hip dysplasia (CHD) is one of the most frustrating diseases in veterinary medicine today simply because it is so difficult to prevent and treat. CHD is a developmental disease of the bones in which the head of the thigh bone poorly fits the hip socket, causing damage to the cartilage, gradual destruction of the joint, pain and swelling. This disease should not be confused with hip arthritis. Rather, it is the most common cause of arthritis in the hips.

How is canine hip dysplasia transmitted?

CHD is a heritable disease. It is passed on by the parents to the offspring. The only effective measure therefore to eradicate the disease is to prevent dogs with hip dysplasia from breeding. However, this is easier said than done, because not all dogs with hip dysplasia show signs of the disease. Seemingly normal dogs still carry the gene for CHD and are bred, causing the disease to stay within the genepool.

How does one know if a dog has hip dysplasia?

A dog with hip dysplasia generally has less energy and movement. It has difficulty rising from a sitting position, lameness in the back legs, is hopping like a rabbit when running, and is reluctant to go up the stairs. However, these symptoms are usually not evident till the dog reaches middle age. In extreme cases though, some dogs exhibit obvious hip problems as early as 5-6 months of age.

How does a vet confirm if a dog has hip dysplasia?

Sad to say, there is no blood test or genetic test yet that will detect if a dog is a carrier of CHD or not. Diagnosis of the disease is routinely done through physical examinations and x-rays. X-rays help in assessing how bad the condition is, and through comparison with future x-rays, it can also serve as a gauge of how well the chosen treatment is working. Two techniques for taking x-rays of CHD-afflicted dogs are listed below:

1.hip-extended ventrodorsal view x-ray – It provides a frontal view of the pelvis and hip-joints and best assesses the degree of severity of arthritis present.

2.PennHIP radiography technique – It is used to detect hip looseness in dogs as young as four months of age.

What are the treatment options for canine hip dysplasia?

There is no real cure for CHD just yet, but there are conservative or non-surgical ways to relieve its symptoms. These include the use of drugs to relieve pain and inflammation. Rimadyl, Ectogesic and Deramaxx are effective and have given a lot of suffering dogs the relief needed to live a normal life. Weight loss programs, controlled exercise and physical therapy are also very effective in certain cases.

When conservative treatment is not enough, the only other option is surgery. Surgery can be very effective as it corrects the underlying cause of hip pain which is a malformed joint. Surgery is approached in two different ways when dealing with hip dysplasia. Prophylactic surgery is done to prevent the progression af arthritis while therapeutic surgery aims to treat already arthritic hips.

Triple pelvic osteotomy is the primary preventive procedure available. It involves cutting the pelvis in three places and rotating the hip sockets to provide better coverage. This procedure is effective as long as it is done before arthritis sets in or before the joint is damaged. Another kind of preventive surgery, although still being studied if it is effective or not, is pubic symphysiodesis. This involves manipulating the way the pelvis grows to ensure a tighter hip. This procedure is done on very young dogs.

Therapeutic procedures include total hip replacement and femoral head ostectomy. Total hip replacement is performed mainly on larger dogs. High density, medical plastic is used to replace the socket and a high-quality, non-corrosive alloy is used for the ball. This procedure has a high success rate, almost completely eliminates pain and enables the dog to completely resume activity.

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Another therapeutic procedure for hip dysplasia is femoral head ostectomy. It involves the removal of the top of the femur which then eliminates the painful grinding at the hip joint. The femur is then allowed to float freely causing the formation of scar tisue which then serves as a false joint. This procedure is not recommended for mild cases of arthritis and is generally effective only on smaller, well-muscled dogs.

Can canine hip dysplasia be prevented?

The best measure of prevention is of course careful breeding since hip dysplasia is a heritable condition. The onset of hip dysplasia can be delayed in many dogs with a genetic predisposition by preventing excessive weight gain during the early months and by making sure that the puppy does not place undue stress on the hips.

OFA and PennHip offers information on breed risk. Prospective puppy buyers are advised to check for pedigrees for OFA, PennHip or GDC certifications.

Blue Pit Bull Puppies And Their Characteristics

The term Pit Bull seems to apply to a broad range of dogs. There are many different breeds that fall into this category of dog. Some of these breeds include the American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Staffordshire Terrier, the Staffordshire Terrier and the Japanese Tosa to name a few. All of these dogs have similar body types and come from bulldogs and terriers that were bred in England.

These dogs were bred to have very strong jaws in order to bite bulls and control them; and, they were also bred to be intelligent and tough. Since these dogs were bred to be aggressive they were subsequently used as fighting dogs. The sport was very popular and the dogs were bred to be more and more aggressive. The sport of dog fighting has been outlawed in most countries and is considered cruel.

Pit bulls have been bred to come in a variety of colors including black, white, red nosed and blue pit bull puppies can be found. The Blue Pit Bull puppies are considered blue due to the shade of their coat, which has a blue hue to it. Often the more unusual the color the more the puppy will cost.

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What They Are Like

Pit Bull dogs have a reputation for being quick tempered and fast to respond to a perceived threat. This can be a problem when there are children around that have a tendency to pet animals hard and try and sit on them. No animal likes to be treated roughly and their natural response is to protect themselves.

Blue Pit Bull puppies have these same tendencies, and this should be a consideration when looking at the breed. Unfortunately, the breed has gotten a bad reputation, so these types of dogs, including Blue Pit Bull puppies, are outlawed in some areas.

If a Blue Pit Bull puppy is the pet that you desire make sure to use a reputable breeder. Breeders can help ensure that certain traits are more likely to occur in a puppy. A good Pit Bull breeder will be concerned with making sure that their pups are bred with traits that are acceptable.

A good breeder will make sure that the Blue Pit Bull puppies are socialized and loved, so that they grow up with good human interaction skills. Find a reputable dealer through the American Kennel Association or by talking with friends. Pit Bulls can make good companions, just be careful of where they are bred.

3 Types Of Shock-Training Aids

Remote Shock Collars

Remote shock collars have been around for a long time. Even years ago the device was commonly used as a means of delivering punishment from a distance. These collars may still be used in an inappropriate manner if the user is unskilled in training and reinforcement techniques. Many professional dog breed trainers feel as though the companies who manufacture these collars have in fact come a long way, not only in refining the collars themselves but also in responsibly providing books and videos on correct usage and procedure.

The technique for general training is less compulsive than leash and collar training. Many people are under the impression that only an emotionally strong dog can deal with the stress of a remote collar; this is not true. Many smaller and less strong-willed breed of dogs have been trained successfully using remote shock collars.

Bark trainers

Electric anti-bark trainers are on the retail market as well as the aforementioned hand-held remotes. Anti-bark collars work well, providing that the dog understands how to shut down the stimulation. As with all remote collars, primary training is essential prior to using an anti-bark device.

Another issue is learning when and why the dog is barking. Dogs that are barking from stress or anxiety may stop barking while wearing a remote anti-bark device but will almost certainly displace their stress and form other undesirable behaviors.

It is recommended that owners of barking dogs look into the causes of the barking before using an anti-barking tool. Addressing the cause can often supply a less drastic and long term solution.

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Invisible Boundary Fences

These fences have become popular in the suburbs where zoning regulations often prohibit conventional fencing. This form of containment is surely better than no fence at all, but will not keep stray animals out of your yard. Most dogs are readily trained to “respect” the boundary, although some dogs will tolerate the correction to explore the world. Once a dog breaks through to the outside, he would have to take a correction for attempting to return through the boundary line. Funny how most dogs are prepared to take the stimulation in order to escape but not willing to take the same stimulation to return home.

Most prefer standard fencing to electric, but again, electric is better than none. In any case, dogs should not be left outside alone for too many hours at a time. It frustrates them, and they will begin barking endlessly or running the perimeter of your property terrorizing people passing by.

Cleaning Puppy Urine: A Few Suggestions To Help Reduce Stains & Odors

Accidents do happen so don’t be too frantic when your puppy eliminates on the floor. Urine on floors can easily be cleaned with a number of cleaning products that are sold in pet supply stores. If she urinates on your rug, you want to absorb as much urine as possible by doing the following:

1. Get a roll of paper towels and take a few sheets and place them over the soiled spot.

2. Press firmly down with your foot to absorb the urine.

3. Remove the soiled paper towels off the carpet and repeat the process to lift out 90% of the urine.

4. Apply to the problem area a bacterial enzyme formula that can be purchased at any pet supply store. You can also use a 50% solution of vinegar and water.

If you have an all-wool rug, I suggest you roll it up or place some padding over it until you are confident that your puppy is thoroughly housebroken. Wool rugs retain 5% of moisture whereas nylon rugs retain just 2% moisture. You may want to consider using a rug constructed of a new fiber called Olefin which retains only .5% of moisture. The more urine a rug retains, the greater the chance the urine will leave an odor or stain, and eat away at the cement that holds the rug together.

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If you catch your puppy urinating on the floor, don’t rush toward her. This will scare her and she may race around the urinating at the same time. By chasing after her, you are also creating tension – she will learn to sneak off to another room to urinate. Also avoid picking
your puppy up and carrying her when she is urinating – she may leave a trail of urine all over
your floors and on you!

The best action to take when you catch her in the process is to startle her by clapping your hands and giving an abrupt verbal command, “Go to the door!” This may startle her enough to stop the flow. Quickly put a leash on her and lead her outside to the potty area. Of course the best way to make sure your dog pees outside is to constantly watch her all day, but this is not practical for most of us who have to work during the week.

Guide To Bloodhound

History and origin: This scent hound is an old breed, dating back to Roman times. He is said to have been brought to England by William the Conqueror in 1066. This dog has the most powerful sense of smell of all the breeds. In the United States, he has been used as a tracker of fugitives and lost individuals.

Description: The Bloodhound stands 24 to 26 inches at the shoulder and weighs between 90 and 110 pounds. This is a large, powerful animal with great stamina and drive. The shedding coat is short and requires regular brushing with a hound glove to keep it in good condition. The color may be black-and-tan, red-and-tan, or all tan. Bloodhounds have loose, wrinkled skin and long ears.

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About the breed: The Bloodhound is known to be the best tracker of all the scent hounds. He is excellent at picking up a scent and following it relentlessly until the prey is located, but he does not kill it. This breed is a highly specialized dog specifically designed to perform a single task: tracking. Breeders have created not only a dog with the best nose in the business but also a dog with a relentless, determined mind-set. The Bloodhound will follow a scent forever and ignore everything else, including you. Choosing a Bloodhound for a family pet would be like using a bulldozer to drive to the corner store. More than any other breed, the Bloodhound needs to perform the task for which he was bred. Although most of them have a very good temperament, there have been few cases of very aggressive Bloodhounds. The relentless, determined, non-thinking mind-set that is so effective in tracking can be transformed into aggressive behavior as well. When a Bloodhound becomes aggressive, he is almost impossible to stop. Keep in mind that this is a very big dog. The Bloodhound needs obedience training and socialization early in life. He is stubborn and is easily distracted by scents that you cannot perceive.

Feeding: Recommended feeding for the Bloodhound is 1 ½ – 2 ½ cans (13.3oz) of high-quality meaty product with biscuit added in equal part or 5 cupfuls of a complete, dry dog food.

Ideal home: This breed will be suitable for hunters, trackers, police departments, and search and rescue teams and is not really recommended as a family pet. He can be intolerant of children and may bite if teased or provoked. However, if you choose to have this breed as a family pet, he needs to live in the country and requires a fenced yard or kennel. The owner must be a strong, no nonsense leader and must use this breed to do the work he was bred for. Keep in mind that he needs plenty of exercise to keep him happy and healthy.

Dealing With Problem Puppy Behaviors

Everyone who owns a puppy or dog will eventually have to deal with and correct less than desirable behaviors on the part of their companion animal. There are a number of behaviors that should be nipped in the bud, including:

Jumping up on people: This is one of those behaviors that many owners inadvertently encourage in their animals, since jumping up, wagging his tail and the like can be adorable in a young puppy. When that puppy is older, larger and heavier, however, this jumping up behavior ceases to be cute and begins to become annoying and even dangerous.

A large, heavy dog jumping up on people can be dangerous to young children and even to some adults, since a large, 100 pound plus dog can easily knock down a child or small adult. Since you as the owner are responsible for the behavior of your dog, it is important to nip this problem behavior in the bud.

The best time to do that, of course, is when the puppy is still small and easy to handle. When the puppy jumps up on you or someone else, gently place the puppy’s feet back on the floor. When the dog remains standing there, be sure to praise it extensively.

It is also important to give the puppy an alternative to jumping up. Puppies jump up on people to express their enthusiasm, so it is important to redirect this energy in a more socially acceptable direction. Try teaching the puppy to present his paw instead of jumping up.

When teaching the puppy to not jump up on people, it is important to be consistent. Consistency is important in any training program, and all members of the family must understand that the puppy is not permitted to jump on them.

Pulling, charging and tugging on the lead: One problem you definitely want to nip in the bud is this one. It is important that the puppy learn to respect the collar and leash now, when he is still small and light enough to handle. Teaching this lesson to a 10 pound puppy will be much easier than teaching the same lesson to a 150 pound dog.

Using a good strong body harness or head collar can be a big help when training a puppy not to pull, or to retrain a dog that has already learned to pull on the leash. When first fitting a harness, it is important to allow the puppy to walk around wearing it, so that he can get used to wearing it.

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The first thing your puppy must learn, and the basis of all subsequent training, is teaching your dog to heel. Teaching your dog to walk quietly at your side on a loose lead is the basis of all dog training, and until your puppy has mastered this vital skill he will be unable to move onto more advanced training.

When walking with a puppy on a leash, it is important to always keep slack in the leash. If the puppy begins to pull on the leash, the handler should quickly change directions. The puppy will then find itself lagging behind instead of forging ahead. The least will be loose except for the split second it takes to change directions. It is important for the handler to use a quick tug of the leash, followed by an immediate loosening, when teaching this lesson.

When teaching the puppy to walk properly, it is important to never allow the puppy to pull you around, or to forge ahead on the leash. Allowing the puppy to pull you around will teach him exactly the wrong lesson.

3 Types Of Remote Training Devices

Monitors: When first training your dog to be responsible in your home, you want to be aware the moment an inappropriate behavior occurs because corrections long after the fact are worthless. As a behavior is occurring is the time you can teach your dog right from wrong. There are commercially manufactured motion sensitive devices that blurt out a sound to let you know that Rover is in the wrong place and there are even seen elaborate camera systems designed to “spy” on mischievous pets. If your dog is sneaking up onto counters, tables, and furniture, these sensor devices might be worthwhile.

Audible: There are a wide variety of audible remote devices on the market. Some have ultrasonic frequencies that are inaudible to humans, while others are detectable by the human ear. There are audible hand-held units that are pressed by you for off-leash control, and others that emit the sound when motion sensors are remotely triggered by your dog.

The distance that each unit will be effective should be taken into account. Ultrasonic units are most effective at the shortest distance and lose efficacy as distance increases. Keep in mind that the units that squelch audible sounds will scare you too when you press the button. A friend of mine used to use boat horns to get focus from dogs that were running away from him during dog shows. The problem was that he ended up getting focus from everyone within a one-mile radius.

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Physical: Physical correction tools are amazingly effective. They include electrically charged mats, mousetrap-type devices, and horrifically odoriferous products such as ammonia or pepper. Setups include a wide variety of inventive procedures as well. For example, place a small bit of bread on your counter top and run a few strips of double-sided carpet tape along the edge. When your dog jumps up onto the counter and gets his feet stuck he will not be quick to return to the counter-top.

Some dog breeds are less tactile and sensitive and may require a stronger correction. Electric mats offer a few levels of stimulation, and when your dog puts his feet on it, it will sting. Remember, to the dog you should not appear involved in this. T he sting came as a result of your dog’s behavior, which is unrelated to you. Say nothing or if anything console the dog when it comes to you for safety. You remain safe to your dog as the counter begins to appear dangerous.

City Dog Walking: Handling Obstacles & Safety Zones

Navigating Around Obstacles

Once you start walking your puppy, you will be amazed at the obstacles that will crop up as you walk down the street. Light posts, parking meters, bus and stop signs, bike rails, waste barrels, fire hydrants, groups of people waiting for a bus or getting off a bus, along with other dogs and people are only some of the obstacles you and your puppy will face.

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These obstacles may not seem like a big deal until you combine them with pedestrians and groups of people congregating on the sidewalk. And one of the best ways to avoid large groups of oncoming people is to navigate your puppy onto the curb side of lights posts and parking meters.

Moving Obstacles

Also be aware of moving obstacles such as bicyclists, in-line skaters, kids running and dogs walking on or off-leash ahead of their owners. When approaching moving obstacles, don’t have your puppy on a long lead. You don’t want your puppy or your lead getting wrapped around a moving obstacle.

Your best action with a moving obstacle is to shorten the lead and give it room to pass. Don’t get tense by choking your puppy with too tight of a lead. Another good option is to stand still with your puppy and relax while the moving obstacle passes you by.

Safety Zones

A safety zone is any area that widens the space between your puppy and an oncoming object. It can be an entrance way to a store, the curb side of a parking meter, or an area that’s off to the side. The curb side of parking meters are perfect safety zones because most people don’t walk on that part of the sidewalk. Think of safety zones as a way of controlling your space on the street. For example, if you see a couple of kids on bikes racing down the sidewalk or a person running, you can navigate to a safety zone and keep you and your puppy in a safe position. This is the best way to avoid accidents or close calls.

By controlling your space, you also send a strong message to other owners coming by with their dogs that you are protecting yourself and your puppy. You gain control of your space and this can diffuse a tense situation, particularly if a full-grown dog does not like your puppy.

You can also use the safety zone method if you see another puppy owner approaching and you are in a hurry and do not wish to spend the time having the puppies mingle with each other. Here’s a good safety tip: Puppies on leashes should never play with each other. Their leashes will get tangled and you will put your puppy in a precarious situation when you have to drop your lead to get out of the entanglement.

The Trusty Black Labrador As A Pet

The Labrador breed is one of the most popular dog breeds around the world. The Labrador can come in several colors including golden, chocolate and Black Labrador. This breed was originally used as a hunting dog, but they have evolved into being one of the most widely used breeds for assistance training, security and police dogs.

They are very smart dogs that are easily trained and want to be working dogs. They have an easy going nature and this is one of the reasons they are used as an assistance dog. They have the intelligence to be trained to work with people with disabilities and the loving nature that makes them very loyal.

The History Of The Breed

The origins of the Black Labrador begin with the St. Johns Water dog. This breed was found and used in the fishing communities of Newfoundland. It is thought that this is also the ancestor to the large Newfoundland dogs that may have been a combination of St. Johns Water dog and large mastiffs.

The Black Labrador has its roots in a similar gene pool of the St. Johns Water dog and they were breed to be smaller than their cousins the Newfoundland’s. Black Labradors were used as water fowl retrievers and needed to have water repellant coats to aid them when they were in the water.

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The Black Labrador Retriever is the original color of the species and this type of dog appears in historical notes from around the 1880’s. Because of their keen hunting nature and abilities in the water, these dogs were admired by many and the black Labrador was taken back to England were the breeding continued.

In the United States the breed gained its recognition in 1928 in an article written about them. Black Labrador Retrievers quickly gained popularity as a hunting and retrieving dog. They continued their rise in popularity as it was noted that they were also a great family pet.

Their easy going temperament and gentle nature make them a wonderful addition to any family. They are well known for having a “soft mouth” which means they don’t bite down on what they are carrying in their mouths which makes them a good retriever, but also gentle around children. If not trained, they are however somewhat energetic and as a larger dog need an outlet for all of that energy.

The Black Labrador Retriever is an excellent pet for a family and will be a welcome addition.

Choosing A New Puppy: 3 Factors To Consider

An important step towards a happy and long-lasting relationship with any puppy is the ability to meet your expectations and requirements to the puppy’s personality and needs.

Children In The Household

Whatever type of puppy you decided to pick, keep in mind that taking care of a young pup involves the same amount of commitment and time that a young child needs, and sometimes more.

Having both together under the same roof requires constant supervision to keep them from literally hurting each other. Keeping a close eye at all times prevents roughhousing, pulling, biting, and any potential injuries to occur.

Most trainers and breeders recommend that homes with toddlers should not get a toy breed because of the risk of the puppy getting squeezed, dropped, or stepped on by the young child. However, if you already have your heart set on a toy breed for your child to grow up with, pick one with a gentle disposition and an easy-going personality.

Level Of Protectiveness

For most dog owners, a dog that barks when someone approaches the door is enough to give them a sense of security, just like having a living home alarm system. The bark of a small dog is just as effective in turning away an intruder as the bark of a large dog would be. Dachshunds and most toy breeds are excellent watchdogs. Terriers are also great for the job.

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If you are looking for a dog that can protect you and has the physical appearance to prove it, think about getting a herding breed or a working breed. Dogs from these breeds are protective of their owners and have the looks that deter burglars. They are also highly skilled and easily trainable.

Time Spent

One of the reasons why dogs are such popular pets is because they are naturally social in nature, making them a great companion. Keeping this in mind, do not get one if you plan on keeping him out in the backyard all day long. This is especially true for puppies, since they require more supervision, more interaction, and regular training to be a more socialized and civilized member of the family.

The average dog spends at least eight hours a day, five days a week, home alone. Some breeds are more adaptable to this kind of living situation. Most terriers, for example, find ways to entertain themselves given enough space for them to roam around. The same is true for Siberian Huskies and Alaskan Malamutes.