Studying Play Behavior Proves Dogs Are Mindful of Others

Dog-Behavior-Blog-1

The fact that dogs play comes as no surprise — it makes up a large part of our everyday interactions with them. That being said, there’s a lot to be learned about how our dogs perceive the world simply from observing them at play.

The Study

Marc Bekoff, a professor at UC Boulder, has been studying animal behavior since the early ‘70s, and in that time, has amassed a large amount of footage of dogs, wolves, and coyotes interacting within their communities. In that footage, Bekoff notes some interesting behaviors exhibited by these naturally social creatures.

Dog-Behavior-Blog-2

For one, those cartoon-esque dust balls of claws and teeth our dogs consider “play” can, in fact, be construed as something more akin to a dance, with agreed upon steps and etiquette. During play, dogs have been observed as bowing to initiate, giving up a clear advantage in size to level the playing field (e.g., a Rottweiler laying on his back so a Yorkie might stand a chance), and ostracizing dogs that disregard the agreed upon rules (playing too rough).

In the Beginning…

Dogs play instinctively, and a large part of playing is the facilitation of the development of pups — teaching them skills they will later use while hunting or defending their den. And though there are numerous practical applications for playing that are visible on the surface, to say that those are the only reasons our canine compatriots play turns out to be a bit shortsighted.

Dog-Behavior-Blog-3

Pack culture, in many ways, resembles a rudimentary society — there is a hierarchy (alpha dog), a sense of community (social grooming, playing), as well as borders and boundaries. Playing exists in part to train and prepare pups for adult life, but if survival was the only endgame, why would these social creatures continue playing into adulthood? In play you expend energy, open yourself up to an injury, and leave yourself open to an attack. So why do adult dogs play?

It must be fun!

What We’ve Learned

Not only do dogs play for fun — they adhere to a specific code of ethics that separates play from fighting, showing that dogs are capable of expressing their intent as well as understanding the intent of others. For example, when a dog “bows” before a game, they are showing others that they are looking to play.

Dog-Behavior-Blog-4

Bekoff also noted other, less readily observable behaviors he discovered from watching his tapes. A subtle narrowing of the eyes during play says to the other dog, “You’re playing a little too rough,” at which point the other dog either takes the hint, or the squinting dog stops playing. Also, dogs typically won’t start playing with another dog until they have their attention and approval, which shows that, not only do dogs want play to be a mutually agreed upon sport, but they also have a surprising awareness of whether someone else is paying attention to them.

This type of communication shows that dogs are truly aware, in no small part, of other animals’ thoughts and emotions — a trait previously thought to be reserved for humans. “That’s why we can have such a deep relationship with them,” says Bekoff, “When we study play in dogs, we study ourselves.”

What do you think? Can dogs understand how others are feeling? Do dogs show signs of morality? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more. 

Source:
Washington Post – In dogs’ play, researchers see honesty and deceit, perhaps something like morality

Read More...

Top Five Tips To Choose A Dog Walker

 


For people who have full-time jobs or highly energetic dogs, a dog walker can be a real godsend. A dog walker’s job is to stop by your house and take your pup out for a stroll, for anywhere from 15 minutes to a full hour.

This time outside not only gives your dog a chance to relieve themselves, it also provides them with exercise and a break from the boredom that can set in during hours spent alone.

So to choose a good dog walker?

The first thing to remember is that because professional dog walking is a fairly new business, there are no regulations in place. What this means is that anyone can become a dog walker without any sort of training or certification, and it’s up to you find an individual who will keep your pal safe and be worth your money.

Take a look at these tips for how to choose a dog walker.

#1 Ask Around

When beginning to choose a dog walker, start with the people you know. Ask your dog-owning friends and neighbors if they use a dog walker, and if so what they like or don’t like about them.

Who knows — you may just end up with a phone number for the perfect canine companion.

#2 Search the Web

The internet can be a great place to search for a dog walker (or dog walking company) in your area, and sites like Yelp make it easy to read reviews from real customers.

Pay close to attention to any negative reviews, but give the positive reviews a glance too. This can be a good way to get an overall picture of the dog walker and their practices.

RELATED STORY: How to Teach Your Dog to Heel

#3 Decide What Is Important to You

Some dog walkers are also obedience trainers. Some dog walkers take your dog to new locations every time, while others always stick to the same stroll around the block.

Some dog walkers offer weekly or monthly report cards on your dog’s behavior and activities. Some dog walkers will take pictures of your dog and send them to you. Decide what is important to you, and go from there.

#4 Ask Questions!

Once you’ve zeroed in on a dog walker, it’s time to ask lots of questions. Here are some that you should be sure to ask:

– What will you do with my dog when you’re with them? (Walk? Play? Feed them?)

– Where will you take my dog? (Just the neighborhood? Outside of the neighborhood?)

– How much time will my dog spend actually walking? (Excluding any car time).

– How many dogs do you walk at once? (Fewer dogs means that your dog will get more attention and the risk of conflict or injury will be less than with a large group).

– What sort of punishments or rewards do you use? (If you use positive reinforcement training, for example, you’ll want to find a dog walker who does the same).

– How do you handle emergencies? (Such as an injuries and natural disasters).

– Do you have any professional training or certification, such as obedience training or pet first aid?

– Are you licensed, bonded, and insured? (Professional dog walkers should have a business license, carry insurance, and all employees should be bonded).

– What are your rates?

– Do you have references, and may I contact them?

RELATED STORY: Which Type of Dog Behaviorist or Trainer Do You Need?

#5 Trust Your Instincts (and your dog’s, too!)

You can often get a good feel for a person just by meeting with them, and if a little voice inside of your head is saying that something is not quite right, it’s a good idea to listen in order to choose a dog walker.

Dogs can also be great judges of character, and seeing how your dog and a potential walker interact can be a good way to make the final decision.

Do you like the way they are interacting with your dog? Does your dog seem comfortable?

You may even want to pay the dog walker to take your pal for a stroll around the block and walk behind them to see how things go.

Do you use a dog walker? What or what don’t you like about them? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding and more.

Read More...

6 Tips for Getting Great Photos of Your Pet

It can be tough to get a frame-worthy photo of a subject who doesn’t understand the concept of photography. Here are a few tips for getting some shots of your pet that you can proudly show off, both in your home and on your Facebook page.

1. Bribe your subject to sit still.

Don’t have a willing subject? There’s nothing like a little bribery to grease the wheels. Come armed with your pet’s favorite treats to get that “at attention” look from your pet.

RELATED ARTICLE: Celebrities Who Go Above and Beyond for Pets

2. Select a favorite toy.

Whether you want an action shot, a still life, or you don’t care which – you just want a good picture! – then bringing a favorite toy along for your photo shoot is bound to get some good shots of your pet cuddling with or gnawing on their lovey.

3. Aim for the golden hour.

You will get the best photos if you shoot outside in natural lighting either early morning soon after sunrise or late evening around sunset. This is known as the golden hour amongst photographers because the photos look – you guessed it – golden. If you’re shooting an indoor pet, then hopefully you have a room in your house that’s flooded with either early morning or late evening light.

RELATED ARTICLE: Make Your Cat the Envy of the Neighborhood

4. Get eye-to-eye with your subject.

Get down on your belly or knees to take some photos right at your pet’s level. We all know how odd those photos look when someone takes a photo while standing above their pet. You will get a much more interesting and engaging shot if you can see your pet head on.

5. Invite a playmate.

If you want some great action shots, then invite a friend to toss balls to your dog or to wave a bird on a stick for your cat. While it’s tempting to man both the toy and the camera, you are far more likely to get a brag-worthy photo if you enlist a buddy to play with your pet while you shoot. Or better yet, get your friend to take some action shots of you and your pet while you play together.

RELATED ARTICLE: Fun Times Ahead for You and Your Best Friend

6. If all else fails…wait for naptime!

Who doesn’t love seeing a pet all curled up for sleepy time? You certainly won’t have to worry about framing your subject or dealing with blurred action shots when you’ve got a sleeping pet on your hands.

Do you have a favorite photo of your pet? Let us know in the comments, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.

Read More...

Pros and Cons of Getting a Second Dog

 


My husband and I talk about it all the time: should we get a second dog?! We love our dog Wade and we often wonder if getting a second dog would make his life better (and our life better, too!) Of course, there will always be pros and cons, whether you’re talking about getting a pet for the first time or thinking about adding another furball to the family. Our minds aren’t made up yet, which inspired me to put some pros and cons on paper. Let’s take a look!

Pros of Getting a Second Dog

You’ll Have Another Dog!

Call me Captain Obvious, but if you’re already a dog lover (like I am), the prospect of adding another fuzzy face to the picture is sure to fill your heart with joy. Do you love the pitter patter of little paws around the house? What about a fluffy head on your lap while you read? Think about all of those wonderful things — then multiply them by two!

Your Dog Will Have a Companion

Human companionship is great, but there’s nothing quite like another dog when it comes to Fido’s friendships. Your dog will have someone to play with, someone to explore with, and someone to sleep with (aww). Having another dog to pal around with may keep your dog from getting bored when you’re out of the house or distracted at home. And if the new dog that you bring home is confident, it may help to bolster your original dog’s confidence, thus improving their overall behavior.

RELATED STORY: Is My Dog Weird? 5 Strange Dog Behaviors Explained

A Second Dog May Make Losing a Dog Easier

It’s something that most pet parents don’t want to think about, but at some point every dog will pass on, and having another around may help to ease the emotional burden when the time comes. No dog will ever be able to replace another dog, of course, but a second dog may offer comfort and companionship while you go through the grieving process.

Cons of Getting a Second Dog

Double Your Expenses

This is perhaps the biggest reason why pet parents nix the idea of adding a second pet. Expect to double your expenses when it comes to veterinary care, medicine, food, supplies, boarding, dog walkers… you get the idea. While many boarders offer deals for multiple dogs and you can purchase foods and supplies in bulk, at the end of the day you’re still looking at more spending.

Travel Can Be Tricky

If you like to take your dog everywhere with you, you’ll have to get used to the idea that many public places allow one dog, but not two, and that getting two crates into the car can be a bigger hassle than assembling just one. In addition, as mentioned above, boarding two dogs will cost more than boarding one. If you’re a real jetsetter, this may be an important point to consider.

RELATED STORY: What Are the Best Dogs to Travel With?

It’s Possible That They Won’t Get Along

Yep, it’s true, and I’ve seen it happen. The best way to avoid this situation is to make sure that both dogs are well-trained and free of behavioral issues, such as anxiety, fear, or aggression. Behavioral issues can not only cause tension between the dogs, they can also spread from one dog to another (so if your first dog wasn’t aggressive, they might become aggressive if you add a second dog who is).

You’ll want to introduce the dogs slowly; don’t just toss them in the same room together. Let them get to know each first other on loose leashes (a tense leash can stress a dog out), and then through a barrier like a baby gate. Don’t force interactions, but do allow the dogs to sniff and introduce themselves. Look for signs of tension or aggression, such as growling and stiff postures. Once the dogs aren’t engaging in greeting behaviors (such as sniffing) anymore, and you don’t see any signs of fearful or threatening behavior, you should be good to go.*

*Note: this is just a brief explanation of how to introduce two dogs for the first time; it’s always a good idea to consult a trainer before actually trying it yourself.

So what do you think? Should we get another dog? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.

Read More...

4 Tips For Taking Care Of Your Dog on a Rainy Day


Many parts of the country are currently experiencing the rainy season, and that means lots of longing doggy stares out the front door as well as drenched paws and fur when your pal does get outside. Being all cooped up inside the house on a rainy day isn’t any fun, but neither is trailing a mess indoors. With those problems in mind, we’ve compiled a list of tips for how to survive a wet day with your favorite four-legged friend. Take a look!

#1 Doggy Rain Gear

Sometimes you just can’t avoid taking your pup out in the rain, whether it’s for a brisk bathroom walk or you just so happened to schedule your pal’s annual vet visit on the wettest day of the year. The good news is that waterproof dog gear is a huge market, and you can find everything from jackets and vests to booties and rain hats (yes, hats!) If you choose to dress your dog in protective duds, just make sure they fit properly and don’t have any parts or embellishments that could cause harm.

RELATED STORY: How To Measure Your Dog For Clothes And Leashes

#2 Teach Your Dog to “Go” on Command

If it’s really coming down, you could skip your morning walk and let your dog out in the yard instead. However, some dogs love to putz around when they get outside — sniffing bushes and inspecting sticks — and this can mean that your furball is totally sopping by the time they get around to doing their business.

To avoid a dilly-dallying (and drenched!) dog, teach your pal to “go” on command. Choose a place close to the house so your dog won’t have to travel far and train them to go in one spot through positive reinforcement and treats. Lead your dog to the spot, wait for them to do their business, say something like “go potty!” when they go, and offer a treat. Repeat this over and over (ideally, when it’s not raining!) until your pup gets the gist. Then when it’s raining, you can give your dog the command and they’ll know right where to go and what to do.

Have a towel waiting inside to wipe down your pup’s paws and legs once they’re done.

#3 Bring the Bathroom Inside

Torrential downpour? Gusting wind? Lightning and thunder? You might need to wait it out, but that doesn’t mean that your dog can wait to go to the bathroom. Keep a stash of wee pads around and teach your dog how to use them. When in a pinch, your dog can take care of business on these highly absorbent and easy-to-discard pads.

RELATED STORY: 7 Tricks To Housetraining A Puppy

#4 Beat Boredom

A dog who is stuck inside all day can get cabin fever just like we can. Your dog might start pacing, post up near the front door, bark, whine, or even get into mischief (many bored dogs have found destructive ways to pass the time, like chewing up the sofa!)

Instead of letting your dog go stir crazy, beat the boredom with some fun indoor games. You could buy stimulating puzzle toys or come up with your own games, like hide-and-go seek, treat hunt (wherein you hide tasty and special treats around the house), or training exercises. That’s right — training can actually be fun. These 20 Dog Commands You Need To Know will certainly keep you and your pal busy when it’s coming down outside.

What do you do with your dog on a rainy day? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding and more.

Read More...

Meet Millie — The Rock Climbing Cat

Cat parents know that cats are very adept at climbing, but for most people that skill translates to shelves and trees – not mountains.

However, when long time climber Craig Armstrong went to Furburbia in Park City, Utah, the second Millie climbed up his back and perched on his shoulder, he knew that he had just found his new climbing partner. “It took about four seconds to realize we were now partners and would be going on many journeys together,” Craig wrote in BackCountry.com.

That is not to say that Millie started blazing trails up rocky crags from the get-go — to get Millie the rock climbing cat acclimated to the concept of mountain climbing, first Craig had taken her to a local park where she would simply follow him around, getting used to the idea of being outdoors, staying close by, and responding to her name — all important qualities in a good climbing partner.

Since Millie has mastered the basics, Armstrong and Millie have tackled dozens of trails. And while one might assume that a cat’s finicky temperament might not lend itself to extended expeditions in the great outdoors, in Millie’s case, she couldn’t be more of a trooper.

According to Craig, “Millie has all the qualities a good climbing partner should have. She never complains, no matter how bad it gets. She always wants to go higher, and she pushes herself hard. But she also knows when to stop.”

And, as luck would have it, Millie and Craig share a number of similarities when it comes to trail preference, which is a huge asset when finding a climbing mate — “I’m weak, and she doesn’t have opposable thumbs, so we tend to like similar routes: slabby tech routes that require more technique and balance than raw power.”

But partnering up with a cat can be a mixed bag of nuts — “We camp in my truck; she peed in there one night, but she caught a mouse in there one night, too.”

Talk about pets without limits!

If you want to keep up with the exploits Craig and Millie, follow them on Instagram.

Would you consider taking your cat on an expedition like this? Do you think your pet would be up to the task? Let us know in the comments below! Also, consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more.

Source:
Bored Panda – My Adopted Cat Is The Best Climbing Partner Ever
Backcountry – My Climbing Partner Eats Chicken Liver

Read More...

RECALL ALERT: Possible Salmonella Contamination in Lamb Crunchys

May 29, 2014 – Los Angeles, CA. — Pet Center, Inc. has issued a voluntary recall of the 3 oz bags of their Lamb Crunchys dehydrated dog treats due to a possible Salmonella contamination.

WHAT

Products subject to being recalled by Pet Center, Inc. can be identified by:

  • Code LAM-003

  • UPC# 727348200038

  • Dated 122015

WHY

Salmonella was detected by the State of Colorado, Department of Agriculture in a random sample. Salmonella presents a risk to both the pets eating the tainted product as well as the person handling it.

Pets or people infected with Salmonella may present these symptoms:

In rare cases, Salmonella can result in more serious complications in people, such as:

If you or your pet presents any of these symptoms, contact a doctor (or vet) immediately.

THREAT LEVEL

Low

As of now, no sickness has been reported, and the low distribution of this tainted batch (only found in CA, WI, CO, and WA) meaning that this recall has a limited pocket of risk. However, if you have any of the products in question, handle them with caution.

WHAT SHOULD I DO?

  • Return any unused product to the store in which it was purchased for a full refund (as per the instructions of Pet Center, Inc.)

  • Keep an eye out for symptoms of Salmonella (in you and your pet)

  • Contact Pet Center, Inc. with any additional questions at (800) 390-0575

ALTERNATIVES

Pets that enjoy Lamb Crunchys may also like:

DON’T MISS ANY RECALLS

 

Read More...

Tips for Bathing a Pet Who Hates Water

 

Some pets just love water, but let’s be honest here: it’s a rare pet who is really excited about getting into the bathtub. What do you do when bathing your pet has turned into a wrestling match worthy of a reality TV crew? Here are some tips.

1. Stick to a professional.

Let’s just go ahead and get the “last resort” out of the way. When all is lost and you’re tired of getting scratched up and your pet is tired of getting traumatized, then take your pet to a groomer. They know how to deal with difficult pets and how to be very efficient and calming during the grooming process so that your pet won’t have to suffer too much, even if your wallet begs to differ.

2. DIY, but not in your house.

Take your dog to a DIY dogwash. The anchor leash will help keep your dog’s head still to eliminate struggle. Better yet, between no scuffling, the raised tubs, and the hand-held spray, this should entirely eliminate back strain while you give your pet a very thorough washing.

3. Use a hand shower at home.

Many DIY instructions about bathing a pet include filling buckets of water to pour over your pet to wet and rinse them, but we’ve had the experience of a dog who was much more amenable to being bathed at home once the pet’s parent started using a hand shower for wetting and rinsing the pet’s fur.

4. Use dry shampoo between washings.

If you want to extend the time between trauma – I mean bathing – then try using this Dry Shampoo For Dogs and Cats to make dirt removal gentle and simple without water, and while preserving essential oils in the fur.

You can also try Bio-Groom Waterless Bath No Rinse Shampoo, which contains anti-microbial tea tree oil. Along with cleaning your pet’s fur, this spray can also detangle fur and relieve itching.

Do you have any tips or tales about bathing your pet? Let us know in the comments, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, vet visits, boarding, and more.

Read More...

Dogs Can Detect Prostate Cancer 4x Better Than Modern Tests

Finally, we have found a way to capitalize on our dogs’ long-standing affinity for sniffing rear ends.

Recent studies are showing that trained dogs are nearly four times better than modern testing when it comes to detecting prostate cancer.

The Facts

Prostate-specific antigen (or PSA) tests, in which blood is tested for a protein produced by the prostate, have been the most reliable and least invasive way to determine whether or not a man has prostate cancer. However, even that test frequently produces a false positive. In fact, 75% of positive PSA tests turn out to be incorrect, meaning that 3 out of 4 people receiving the bad news had no reason to be put under such stress.

Our canine compatriots, on the other hand, can detect prostate cancer with roughly 90% accuracy. And while this may be initially surprising, should it be? Dogs have been used for their keen sense of smell for hundreds of years. From tracking game, to sniffing out drugs and explosives, dogs’ well-honed schnozzes have been exceptionally useful tools for numerous tasks. And pair that with their ability to learn and perform various jobs, it should come as no surprise that, with the proper training, dogs can detect nearly anything.

RELATED STORY: Your Dog Knows Your Smell, Even From Afar

How Do These Dogs Do it?

Dogs have the ability to pick up scents that are as diluted as one part per thousand, thanks to their 200-million-some-odd nasal olfactory receptors (compared to the paltry 6 million we humans are equipped with). It’s that keen sense of smell that makes dogs such natural trackers. In order to use that ability to detect cancer, dogs can be specially trained to sniff out certain chemicals produced by prostate tumors in urine.

In a recent study by Dr. Jean-Nicolas Cornu of Tenon Hospital, out of the 66 tests that were done, Medical Detection Dogs were spot on 63 times, with only 3 false positives in the batch. That is an almost unheard of success rate for a test of this nature.

Skeptics are bringing up some concerns with the initial test, saying the sample size is too small to be making claims, or that the dogs may have been picking up on subconscious cues from researchers. Still, this test does open up the a whole new way to think about testing for diseases.

What do you think about using dogs to help detect cancer? Leave a comment and let us know! Also, consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more.

Sources:
Counsel Heal – Dogs are Four Times More Effective Than Prostate Cancer Tests
WebMD – Dogs Sniff Out Prostate Cancer
Daily Mail – Dogs are FOUR times better at detecting prostate cancer than traditional tests

Read More...

What to Do if Your Dog Is Bitten

 


Bite wounds are one of the most common reasons why dogs end up at the emergency vet clinic. Your dog may have gotten into a scuffle with another dog at the dog park, felt the wrath of the neighborhood cat, or had a close encounter with a wild animal. While many bite wounds appear to be small, they can end up spelling big trouble for your dog if left untreated.

Why Are Bite Wounds So Bad?

Bite wounds are puncture wounds, which means that while the outward appearance of the wound may be small, it likely extends deep into your pet’s skin. When the opening of the wound heals over (sometimes very quickly), bacteria from the animal’s mouth that bit your pet can get trapped deep inside, leading to infection and, in some cases, an abscess.

What to Do if Your Dog Is Bitten

#1 Get your dog away from the other animal as soon as it is safe to do so.

It’s not safe for a human to insert themselves into the middle of a dog fight, so be cautious. If the owner of the biting animal is around, ask them if their pet has been vaccinated against rabies (this will be useful information for your veterinarian to know). You may also want to exchange contact information with the other owner in case you need to follow up.

#2 Control the bleeding.

If the bite wound is bleeding a lot (often the case with bites to the ear or face), apply pressure to the wound with a clean towel or other piece of clean fabric. Try not to panic; if your dog sees that you are upset it may cause their blood pressure to rise, which can result in increased bleeding.

RELATED STORY: The Causes of Aggression in Dogs

#3 Head to the veterinarian.

While you might think your dog’s bite wound looks minor, the only person who can properly evaluate the situation is your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will look to see how deep the wound is, how much of your dog’s body area is involved, and recommended treatment.

#4 Treat the wound.

The treatment that your veterinarian recommends will depend on the extent of the injury. In most cases, the area around the wound will be shaved, the wound will be cleaned, and a decision will be made about whether to leave the wound open or seal it up. In the case of a small wound, the veterinarian may determine that leaving it open to drain is the best course of action. Larger or deeper cuts may be sutured up or stapled, and a drain may be placed in cases where damage is extensive or there is a chance of fluid buildup.

In most cases, your veterinarian will prescribe an oral antibiotic to ward off infection, and for minor injuries that are left open to heal, a topical antibiotic may also be prescribed.

Depending on the location of your dog’s bite wound, they may have to wear an Elizabethan collar or “cone” to keep them from licking or further damaging the injury site while it heals.

Follow your veterinarian’s instructions explicitly when it comes to home care of the wound. In some cases you may need to clean it or apply ointment, but you should only do so with products recommended by your veterinarian. Do not attempt to treat a wound with Neosporin or hydrogen peroxide without first consulting your veterinarian, as these products may actually hinder the healing process.

After several days, you and your dog may return to your veterinarian for a follow-up examination.

RELATED STORY: The Importance of Socializing a Dog

How to Prevent Bite Wounds

While there is no way to control the behavior of other animals, there are steps you can take to reduce the chances of your dog being bitten:

  • Well-mannered dogs are less likely to bite or get bitten, so consider signing up for an obedience class with your pal.
  • Keep your dog on a leash while you are out walking, and if they are allowed to roam free in your yard, make sure that the area is enclosed and secure so that they can’t escape and other animals can’t find their way in.
  • Be cautious when it comes to other animals. Before letting your dog run free in a dog park, observe the situation and look for signs of tension or aggression. Before letting your dog approach another dog while you’re out on a walk, ask the other owner if it’s safe and okay to do so. The same should go for unfamiliar dogs approaching your dog; either grant or deny the other owner permission first.

Be careful out there. Sometimes, the bite is worse than the bark.

Has your dog ever been bitten by another animal? Leave a comment and tell us about it, and and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more. Check it out at PetPlus.com

Read More...