The PetPlus Wall Of Woof!

Welcome to the PetPlus The Wall of Woof! Here are some of our wonderful PetPlus pups who’ve had a better life thanks to PetPlus. Share your story with us and a picture of your pup and you might be featured on the Wall of Woof! Bragging rights included.

Why Is My Dog Scared of the Vet?
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Taking your dog to the...
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Taking your dog to the vet is one the most challenging tasks you will face on a regular basis due to its antics. Even if you do your best to trick your dog and take it to the vet, your canine will realize what is going on. If you are wondering why your canine is scared of the vet, you have come to the right place. Why are dogs scared of the vet? A puppy’s first experience with the vet would have majorly been for vaccinations and health check-ups. Also, your canine will be flooded with strange sounds and scents that will make it uncomfortable. As a result of this, your canine will associate fear, a common behavioral problem among dogs, to vets. When your dog is experiencing fear, it wouldn’t want a stranger such as the vet to touch it with strange looking objects. Fear will kick in for your canine at different times such as when you are entering the car or when you are right outside the vet clinic or when the vet comes close. Due to fear, your canine will behave become extremely defensive or it will become unmanageable. On top of that, if you get scared or nervous, the situation will become worse as your canine can sense it. Animals use fear to keep themselves safe during dangerous times, that is the fight or flight response. If you don’t actively address this problem, your canine’s behavior will worsen with every visit to the vet. It will have a negative impact on your canine’s mental and physical health. How to make your dog tolerate visits to the vet? Use the following tips to make your dog comfortable while visiting the vet.
  • Ensure your canine is comfortable in getting handled or touched in places such as the mouth, ears, paws, and tail.
  • Ask the vet, technician, and secretary to give your canine its favorite treats and toys when you visit the clinic.
  • Play classical music in the car so that your canine becomes calm and composed while traveling.
  • Make social visits to the vet’s office on a regular basis to make your canine comfortable with the vet.
  • Avoid forcing your canine to visit the vet. Instead, take your time and let your canine get comfortable at its own pace.
  • Practice the examination procedure followed by the vet at home. By doing this, your canine will feel okay when a vet is handling it.
  • If your canine isn’t comfortable visiting the vet, find out if the vet will make house visits.
  • If your canine is aggressive, put a muzzle on its mouth to prevent accidental bites. Get your canine to be comfortable with a muzzle before taking it to the vet. By following these simple tips, you will be able to take your canine to the vet without any hassles. If you have any doubts, please leave a comment below.
The 5 Hobbies That You Can Share With Your Dog!
Image Source: Staticflickr.com One of the best par...
Image Source: Staticflickr.com One of the best parts of being a pet owner is the ability to share your hobbies with them. Anything you do in your life can be made even better by having your canine friend around. Here are five hobbies you can pick up or share with your dog.
  1. Football Football is a great hobby you can share with your canine friend. If you want to have a lot of fun or hone your skills, your canine can help you out. Set up an obstacle course and get your canine to follow through it or you try to keep the ball away from your canine’s mouth. Over time, your canine will get the hang of playing football and become a partner capable of challenging your skills on the ball.
  2. Gardening Canines are the perfect gardening companions as they love spending time outdoors. The next time you are weeding, transplanting, or planting, take your canine along. Your canine will try to help you out by digging up the ground. If it does it in the wrong spot such as a place where you just planted a fresh bunch of plants, do not scold it. Instead, you can direct it to an area that needs digging. You can also train your canine to bring your gardening equipment from the shed.
  3. Hiking As canines are extremely active and adventurous, try taking your dog along for your next hike. Your dog will love going for long walks to burn off its excess energy and invigorating hikes. However, it will take some time for your canine to get used to a hike. You can start off by going for a small hike on a hill and slowly increase the difficulty as your canine gets comfortable.
  4. Long drive If going for long drives is your thing, you should know that your canine will also love this activity. Just like you, your canine also loves looking and experiencing new things. However, not every canine will be comfortable going for long drives. Take your canine for a small drive and see how it handles it. After a couple of drives, your canine will get used to traveling in a vehicle. Also, you should take breaks in between so that your canine can relieve itself and explore the new environment.
  5. Photography Dogs love being the center of attention and you can use this to your advantage if photography is one of your hobbies. The subject for all your photographs should be your canine. You can also take it to new locations, to give a new background to your photos. By doing this, you will be able to bond with your canine and improve your photography skills at the same time.
You can share these five hobbies with your canine to improve the bond and your skills at the same time. If you have any doubts about this topic, feel free to leave a comment below.
Tips to Cheer up a Depressed Dog
Image Source: Pixabay.com Just like humans, even y...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Just like humans, even your dogs can suffer from depression and sometimes, you need to cheer them up. Depression can affect your canine on a regular basis due to separation anxiety. While there is medicine to treat depression, it has a lot of side effects which can harm your canine even more. Instead, you can try different methods to uplift the mood of your canine friend. How do you know if your dog is depressed? To know if your canine is suffering from depression, check for the following symptoms.
  • Excessive sleeping
  • Zero interest in going for a walk
  • No interest in playing games or with toys
  • Abnormal eating habits
  • Defecating around the house
  • Unexpected aggressive behavior
How to cheer up a depressed dog? If your canine is suffering from depression, here are 5 tips you can use to cheer it up.
  1. Stick to daily routines consistently Canines love to have a routine in their life as they know what to expect throughout the day. All daily routines such as going for walks, eating food, exercise, grooming, and bedtime should be on schedule every day. By doing this, your canine will always look forward to getting out its bed and going on with its day.
  2. Offer new food When your canine isn’t interested in eating food due to depression, try to spice up the menu. Although you should be feeding the same food every day, you can offer small snacks in between so that your canine will regain its interest in eating food. However, you shouldn’t offer unhealthy treats all the time as your canine can gain weight.
  3. Spend more time If your canine is up for it, take it for a long walk during morning to help it get through the day. When you are taking it for a walk, spend more time with your canine. You can talk to it, play with it, and feed it to uplift its mood. However, you shouldn’t be rewarding your canine when it is depressed as it will reinforce such behavior.
  4. Play music Canines are just like humans when it comes to music as it can have a positive effect on their mood. According to a study done by Scottish SPCA, classical music has a calming effect on canines. When your canine is feeling down or if you are planning on going out, play classical music to uplift its mood.
Don’t worry if your canine is suffering from depression as it is treatable. If you use the above tips to cheer up your depressed canine, you won’t have to use medication at all. If you have any queries about depression in canines, leave a comment below.
How Can I Make My Baby and Dog Bond With Each Other?
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Having a baby is one o...
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Having a baby is one of the best things that can happen to anyone’s life. However, if you have a canine around, you might be a little anxious to introduce your little one to it. Even though it can be challenging for your baby and canine to bond with each other, it is worth the effort. Canines or pets, in general, have a positive effect on your overall emotional and physical health. When you are bringing your baby back home, a new member is joining your pack. How to introduce your baby to your dog? Before you bring your baby home, you need to make your canine familiar with its smell. Take any article that has the baby’s scent on it such as its clothing or a blanket or even its soiled diaper. When your baby is about to come home, the mom should go in first and greet the dog. After your canine has settled down, you can begin introducing your newborn with these instructions.
  • Keep your dog away while the mom sits on a chair with the baby on her lap. By doing this, you are showing your canine that you are protective of the newborn. It will prevent your canine from nipping your baby.
  • You should never place your baby on the floor. You shouldn’t hold your newborn over the head of the canine as it encourages jumping.
  • Keep talking, stroking and petting your dog so that it feels calm and reassured.
  • If your canine doesn’t show any signs of aggression such as growling, tucking in the tail, or the ears point back, you can allow it to see and smell your newborn. However, do not let it lick your baby as it is unsanitary.
  • Keep your canine on a leash and be ready to pull it back if there are any hints of aggression. If your canine gets aggressive, you should say no and get it to back down. If it doesn’t do anything, give your dog a reward.
  • Even if everything went well, you have to keep your canine on a leash every time it is around the newborn for the first three weeks.
Forging the bond If everything has gone well after three weeks, you can follow these instructions to form a strong bond between the newborn and the canine.
  • Include your four-legged friend in all the activities you do during the day. Allow your canine to follow your around the house and when you are taking care of the newborn.
  • Give your canine all the attention it wants when you are with your baby. When you are feeding your newborn, give a small treat to your canine.
  • Always keep an eye on your canine till it is completely comfortable with your newborn.
By following this advice, you will be able to forge a strong bond between the canine and the newborn. If you have any queries, leave a comment below.
How Can I Introduce a New Dog to My Resident Dog?
Image Source: Pixabay.com Introducing a new dog to...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Introducing a new dog to your resident dog can be a challenging task as it is extremely stressful to your pet. But why exactly is it hard to do so? When a new canine enters your dog’s territory, the instinct of your dog will make it defend its home. To properly introduce two new dogs, you need to realize that canines use smells to familiarize with their surroundings. Therefore, this training bases itself on this premise. Before you introduce a new canine to your resident dog, you need to keep both of them away from visual contact. Once you have established that, here are four simple steps to introduce both the canines.
  1. Place the cages in separate areas of the house You need to place your canines in cages that are in different parts of the room. The first step is to familiarize your canine’s nose to the new dog’s scent. To do this, you need to introduce a blanket, a toy, or anything else that will smell of the new canine to your resident dog. Keep swapping the items till your canines form a deeper connection with each other.
  2. Let your new canine roam the house To make sure your new canine is accustomed to its new house, you need to let it roam around your house. While the new canine is doing this activity, you need to keep your resident dog out of sight and under control. You need to send the new canine out on a regular basis till it becomes familiar with your house.
  3. Switch between your canines When you new canine has gone back to its cage, let your resident dog come out for a whiff. It will immediately sniff around as there is a new scent in its territory. Initially, your dog will be confused and overwhelmed. Comfort your dog till becomes okay with the new canine’s smell. To ensure your canine is completely familiar with your new canine’s scent, you need to let it out several times a day. You can proceed to the next step when your dog is no longer threatened by the new smell.
  4. Introduce outside your property for the first face-to-face meeting When your canines are going to meet for the first time, they need to have ample space around them to prevent them from being territorial. Let your new canine play in a new area on the field and then get your resident dog to do the same. Once your resident dog is okay with the new canine’s smell, they are ready to meet. Your canines will greet each other when they meet face-to-face for the first time without aggression.
By following these simple steps, you will be able to introduce a new dog to your resident dog. If you have any queries regarding this topic, leave a comment below.
5 Warning Signs That Your Cat Might Be Depressed
Image Source: Pexels.com Just like human beings, c...
Image Source: Pexels.com Just like human beings, cats are also sensitive creatures prone to a whole gamut of emotions. Cats are vulnerable to mood swings and sometimes they are so happy, they feel that they are on top of the world while at other times they may be down in the dumps! Hence, it is not rare for cats going through depressions. If you think your cat is going through a depression, do not feel that you are overreacting! But more than often, depression in cats tend to go unnoticed. If your cat is undergoing these patterns of behavior of late, it might be under depression. Lethargy Now, it is a known fact that cats have a permanent affair with laziness and they are supposed to be lazy. But healthy cats always feel the need to starch out and play sometimes. If you notice your cat to be too fatigued and less energetic throughout the day, it might be suffering from depression. If your cat is sleeping for longer hours and spending the rest of the day practically doing nothing, it is a sign of depression. Appetite changes For a cat, the most exciting part of the day is mealtime, especially if its fish being offered! Healthy cats often have the habit of roaming around your legs and purring softly the moment they notice food in your hands. However, depressed cats do not feel excitement even when food is offered. They have a general loss of appetite and can sometimes spend days without eating proper food. Sometimes, even a healthy cat can refuse meals when it is suffering from bowel disorder or for any other matter. But regular tendency to avoid food suggests your cat is depressed. Changes in grooming If your cat has changed its grooming habits recently, it may be under depression. Some cats undergoing depression tend to avoid grooming for days resulting in an oily coat or messy hair. Sometimes, depressed cats also have a tendency to over groom exposing bald patches and open wounds. Aggression A depressed cat is more prone to aggression than normal cats. Cats fighting depression will want to be left alone in their private space but will react hysterically if nagged on a continual basis. Aggression can also be in the form of loud hisses or even attacks. Avoiding affection Some cats are innately shy and avoid affection showered by their owners. However, if your cat is more social but tends to avoid the affection of late, take it as a danger sign. More often, depressed cats want to be left out and hide at dark corners in your house. It may shy and run away from you the moment you try to cuddle it. So be aware and keep your ball of softness under watch always!
5 Reasons Your Dog is Losing Weight
Image Source: Pixabay.com Just like our body, your...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Just like our body, your canine’s weight can change over the course of the year. Regardless of which breed you have, your four-legged friend will go through weight gain and loss. However, if your canine friend is continuing to lose weight, then there may be something wrong with it. Although it can be hard to narrow down on why your dog is losing weight, there are some problems which can be identified easily. Here are five reasons as to why your dog is losing weight.
  1. Anxiety Anxiety or stress in your canine friend is one of the main reasons why they don’t feel hungry. For dogs to eat food, they need to be in a safe and secure environment. It means that if they are not comfortable with the people or the environment around them, they won’t feel the need to eat on a daily basis. Anxiety can also have the following symptoms: • Unnecessary barking/howling • Defecating and urinating inside the house • Escaping • Digging/Destructive/Chewing tendencies
  2. Dental problems Dental problems are one of the simplest reasons as to why your canine is losing weight. If your canine has a dental abscess or any other issue related to its teeth and its gums, it will become extremely painful for your four-legged friend. As a result of this unhealthy eating habits, your canine will find it extremely painful to eat its food. To really know if your four-legged friend has dental problems, take it to the vet.
  3. Diabetes The problems related with diabetes are the same for both humans and dogs. If your canine has low insulin and its body doesn’t have the ability to absorb sugar from its blood, it can lead to an increase in appetite, even if your canine is losing weight. If your four-legged friend is on the heavier side or if it is a senior dog, it has higher chances of developing diabetes. Sometimes, diabetes can be genetic, just like it is with humans. If your canine is suddenly losing weight, in spite of eating large amounts of food, you should take it to the vet immediately.
  4. Liver disease Canines that suffer from liver disease don’t have adequate levels of sugar and carbs that are usually provided by the liver to the body. As a result of this, the body doesn’t get the necessary nutrients and it will start consuming fat deposits and muscle tissue. The body does this to make up for the lost nutrients.
  5. Thyroid problem Just like your body, the canine’s body is managed by its hormones. Any imbalance in the body of your four-legged friend can lead to thyroid problems. One condition which can arise from this situation is called hypothyroidism. It will increase your canine’s metabolism which can result in rapid loss of weight. Even if your canine eats a lot of food, it’s body will break it down immediately and the vital nutrients end up going out of the system without getting absorbed. It can be hard to detect if your canine has a thyroid problem, so the safest bet is to take it to the vet immediately.
You should keep in mind that over the course of the year, your canine’s weight will fluctuate. However, if there is a rapid loss of weight, you should take it to the vet immediately.
5 Reasons Your Dog Hates Being Left Alone
Image Source: Pixabay.com We have all seen and rea...
Image Source: Pixabay.com We have all seen and read stories about dogs who do crazy things when their owners are away. Although we find these videos adorable, we misinterpret why dogs behave this way when left alone. When you start to pack your lunch or when you wear your jeans or when you sling your bag or purse over your shoulder, you notice a change in the behavior of your canine friend. It will realize that you are getting ready to leave and it will begin to sulk. Even if the best option is to leave your canine friend at home because you are going to place that doesn’t allow dogs, your canine will feel bad. If you are wondering why your dog hates being left alone, here are five reasons:
  1. Separation anxiety and loneliness You may not realize it but your dog will be extremely upset that it is left alone. Remember, your canine friend has no idea when you will be back or if you are even coming back. Even though you have to go to work or any other place, your dog will feel left out and lonely. What may be five minutes to you will be hours to your canine friend. If you are planning on going out, either ensure it has things to do or make it extremely tired so that your canine friend only wants to take a nap. If all of this doesn’t work, you can play some classical music to alleviate separation anxiety and loneliness.
  2. No stimulation If your canine friend has nothing to do such as interacting with other living beings or it isn’t learning new things, it will feel like there isn’t anything around it to stimulate its brain. While you may meet new people or have new experiences when you go out, it isn’t the same for your canine friend as it's environment remains the same. As a result of this, your canine friend will sulk around till you come back home. When you come back home, make it a point to spend quality time with your canine friend so that there is some form of excitement.
  3. Boredom When your canine friend is left alone, it will easily get bored and do things to gain your attention once you come back home. If you don’t keep it busy such as giving it a chew toy or a ball or anything to play with, you won’t like what your canine will do to keep itself entertained. It will defecate around the house, chew up furniture or bark continuously till it gets tired. If you are going out of your house for a long period of time, you need to make sure it has access to all its treats and toys so that it has something to do till you come back.
  4. Has to go to the loo Sometimes, your canine friend will feel like going to the loo to relieve itself. However, as it is inside your house, it doesn’t know what to do as it can’t go out to defecate and it can’t do it inside the house. As a result of this, your canine friend will hold it in and wait till you come back which can be harmful to its health. If you are planning on going out, take your canine friend for a walk so that it can finish its business. By doing this, your canine friend won’t feel the need to go to the loo when you are away.
  5. Age As your canine gets older, it will find it more difficult to stay separated from you. It will become more vocal as it continues to age, even if it is an occasional barker. It becomes a way of expressing itself when it is facing anxiety and separation issues. When you have a senior dog in your house, ensure that there is always someone with it at all times so that it doesn’t feel lonely.
Now that you are aware of why your dog hates being left alone, you should take measures to keep it happy. You can hire a dogsitter or you can leave your canine at the daycare so that it won’t feel anxious or separated while you are away!
This is What Will Happen if Your Dog Eats Peanut Butter
Image source: Freegreatpicture.com So, you opened ...
Image source: Freegreatpicture.com So, you opened a fresh jar of peanut butter and before you can even taste some yourself, your buddy with a wagging tail wants in on the action. Now, you might be tempted to give him/her a spoonful and we wouldn’t blame you, but, we’d ask you to not make that mistake. It’s because we don’t want you to make it a habit and we don’t want you to make it a habit for several reasons. Though peanut butter is fine in small quantities, it’s still a better bet to just avoid the practice in general. We’ll tell you why. Certain Peanut Butter Brands have Xylitol Xylitol is a type of sweetener that some peanut butter manufacturers use as an alternative to sugar. Now, it’s generally safe for humans. But, for dogs, xylitol can cause a sudden increase in insulin and that leads to a sudden drop in sugar levels (also known as hypoglycemia). If the drop is big enough, it can be a threat to your dog’s life. So, if you want your dog to be safe, make sure you check the brand you’re buying for xylitol. The information will be provided on the label. However, if you’ve already fed your dog peanut butter with xylitol, watch out for symptoms such as weakness, lack of coordination, seizures, and collapse. If you do notice these symptoms rush your dog to a veterinarian right away. Do not waste any time. Aflatoxins Aflatoxins are mycotoxins which are naturally produced by a type of fungus known as Aspergillus. Now, aflatoxins aren’t included in peanut butter by the manufacturers. However, they end up in there if the peanuts used to make the peanut butter contain them. Aflatoxins are carcinogenic, which means, they can cause cancer. Other than that, they can also cause liver damage. So, it doesn’t matter what kind or what brand of peanut butter you buy because at the end of the day, there is a good chance that it might contain aflatoxins. Once again, your option here is either extreme moderation or complete elimination. We would suggest complete elimination as it’s the safer way to go. Fat Another problem with peanut butter is that it contains tremendous amounts of fat. The high amount of fat is a result of a process called hydrogenation which is done to increase the shelf life of the product. So, too much peanut butter is bad for, not just your dog, but, even for you. So, we suggest that you consume as little peanut butter as possible and as for your dog, we think it’s simply better to not give the little guy or gal even a taste. Just stick to small quantities of unsalted peanuts. It’s much safer.
Are Nuts Bad for Your Dog?
Image Source: Staticflickr.com As a dog owner, the...
Image Source: Staticflickr.com As a dog owner, there are several concerns you have about your dog’s health and needless to say, a lot of it has to do with what your dog is allowed to eat. You obviously cannot depend on your dog to make the right decisions because dogs love to eat anything they consider as food. Now, one of the more specific food items that bother pet owners is “nuts”. The standard question is “Can my dog eat nuts”? Well, the answer to that is “Yes! Your dog can eat certain types of nuts”. Now the keyword here is “certain”, which simply means there are nuts out there that your dog shouldn’t be getting anywhere near. Some varieties of nuts can be extremely harmful and toxic to a dog’s body. They can cause anything from a simple stomach upset to toxicity or poisoning. You might have to rush your dog into surgery to save his/her life. So, to make things easier for you, we’ve compiled a basic guide on what nuts your dog can eat and what he/she cannot. Unsafe Nuts
  • Almonds: Almonds are not toxic, but, they are hard to digest for dogs. As a result, they can cause gastrointestinal problems for your dog.
  • Macadamia Nuts: These nuts are known for their high fat content, which can lead to stomach problems and even pancreatitis. They also contain a toxin that could cause neurological problems.
  • Walnuts: Walnuts contain a toxin called “tremorgenic mycotoxin” which causes seizures and liver failure. In fact, walnut poisoning is one of the most common claims from dog owners.
  • Pecans: Pecans contain a toxin called juglone which leads to a condition called laminitis in horse. However, fortunately, in dogs, they only cause an upset stomach or at worst, an obstruction. On the whole, not a great option for dogs.
  • Pistachios: Pistachios are high in fat content, which can lead to an upset stomach or pancreatitis. • Hickory Nuts: Hickory nuts also contain juglone, which can lead to the same problems associated with pecans.
Safe Nuts
  • Peanuts: Peanuts, as long as they are unsalted and served without the shell, are safe for dogs. No peanut allergies have been reported for dogs so far. So, a small quantity of peanuts is fine every now and then.
  • Hazelnuts: Hazelnuts are safe for dogs, but, if you have a smaller breed, make sure you crush the nuts before serving them.
  • Cashew Nuts: In small quantities, cashew nuts are absolutely fine for your dog. However, too much can cause stomach problems. Cashews do contain a toxin, but, it can be eliminated via heating. So, yeah, stick to roasted cashews.
For more details, talk to your veterinarian.
Best Airline Approved Travel Bags for Dogs
Image Source: Pixabay.com It’s hard to imagine g...
Image Source: Pixabay.com It’s hard to imagine going for an overseas visit or a long vacation without taking your canine friends along. We always consider dogs to be a part of our family and we want to share our experiences with them. However, when you are planning on taking a flight, you need to think about how you will take your four-legged friends. Travel bags for dogs are one the best safe and secure ways to take them on a plane. Here is our list of top four best airlines approved travel bags for dogs.
  1. Sleepypod Air In-Cabin Are you looking for an in-cabin carrier for your canine friend that will leave it feeling comforted and refreshed? If your four-legged friend loves sleeping, there is no better choice than Sleepypod’s air in-cabin carrier. It is one of the highest rated travel bags for canines at the moment as you can compress it to make it fit in the cabin. On top of that, you can carry it comfortably as it has a padded shoulder strap and it is machine washable.
  2. Bergan Comfort Soft-Sided The Bergan Comfort Soft-Sided travel bag is made for dogs who weigh not more than 22 pounds. The travel bag is machine washable and has a unique design. One side of the travel bag can only be opened half way whereas you can fully open the other side. If you feel your canine friend is feeling left out, you can talk to it through an exclusive side zip. The travel bag is perfect for long journeys as it has maximum ventilation.
  3. Pawhut Deluxe Dog Travel Carrier Backpack If you are looking for a travel bag that can carry dogs weighing up to 20 pounds comfortably and in style, then you will love the Pawhut Deluxe Dog Travel Carrier Backpack. It comes with a pair of wheels and telescopic handles, making it one of the best travel bags for dogs. It has vents on the side for good ventilation and there are zipped mesh doors to protect your canine friend. It is waterproof and can be used for heavy-duty.
  4. Sherpa Original Deluxe The Sherpa Original Deluxe is one of the biggest travel bags in the market for your canine friend. It comes in three different sizes and can accommodate canines who weigh up to 22 pounds. It can be compressed easily and the ventilation is good. Sherpa Orignal Deluxe is approved by airlines throughout the world.These are the best airline approved travel bags you can find in the market for your canine friend. With these bags, you will find it easy to take your four-legged friend for you long vacation!
4 Touching Adoption Stories of Dogs
Image Credits: Pixabay If you are a pet lover, the...
Image Credits: Pixabay If you are a pet lover, the mere sight of a dog wagging its tail or the sound of a cat purring and rubbing its head on your feet is enough to make you go delirious with happiness. But even if you are terrified of touching an animal or you are allergic to pet fur, stories of animal rescue are bound to fill your heart with a gooey warmth that you have never felt before. For truly, these are stories of the power of unconditional love and the way it can transform both a pet and its owner. A large number of pets are abandoned every day for various reasons – inability to provide care, relocation, medical issues and behavioral problems in the pet. The helpless animal loses it security, home, and most importantly, the bond that it had with its owner. While many of such animals lose their spark forever, here are 4 stories of miraculous recovery made by adopted dogs, thanks to the superhuman efforts of a few kind souls.
  1. Pacino – Brittany Elder met Pacino when the pit bull was brought to her hospital to be euthanized. He was dubbed to be extremely aggressive, after being used as a bait dog in Camden. Surprisingly, he was extremely sweet and even licked Brittany’s face on their very first meeting. That is when Brittany decided to adopt him! Pacino underwent extensive surgery that left him weak and broken. Within a year, however, he recovered and is now a handsome dog who Brittany calls her “pride and joy”.
  2. Phoenix – Phoenix’s name does justice to his rescue story that granted him a new lease of life. Surrendered by his owner to an animal shelter in Tennessee when he was 11 weeks old, Phoenix was about to be euthanized. Then, Danielle Baldwin met him. Baldwin could not let this innocent animal die and adopted him in spite of the dog having demodectic mange. Even before a year passed, Phoenix made a spectacular recovery. He loves his owner madly.
  3. Riley – Abandoned and left at an animal control facility in Georgia, Riley contracted mange at a very early stage in her life. That did not deter Jacki Loomis from rescuing Riley. In return, Riley showered kisses and rolled around for belly rubs the day she met her family. A year later, she transformed into a healthy and energetic dog. Her favorite pastime is playing in the snow.
  4. Wesson- Wesson was found by an animal rescue group in St. Louis, bleeding profusely and shaking with fear in an animal control cage. Medical examinations revealed that he had suffered a bullet injury. The bullet parts were still lodged in his back. Liz McKibben came to the hapless animal’s rescue and not only provided him with appropriate medical care but also a loving home.
Everything You Need to Know About Kidney Stones in Dogs
Image Credits: Pixabay Kidney stones or nephrolith...
Image Credits: Pixabay Kidney stones or nephroliths or uroliths are formations of crystals in the kidneys due to excess concentration of mineral salts present in the urine. The stones can form in the urethra or the bladder of dogs. All dogs are prone to developing kidney stones. Certain breeds such as Lhasa Apsos, Miniature Poodles, Dalmatians, and Yorkshire Terriers, to name a few, are more vulnerable than others. It can be extremely painful and often leads to urinary tract inflammation, tissue damage, urinary tract obstruction and infection.Kidney stones or nephroliths or uroliths are formations of crystals in the kidneys due to excess concentration of mineral salts present in the urine. The stones can form in the urethra or the bladder of dogs. All dogs are prone to developing kidney stones. Certain breeds such as Lhasa Apsos, Miniature Poodles, Dalmatians, and Yorkshire Terriers, to name a few, are more vulnerable than others. It can be extremely painful and often leads to urinary tract inflammation, tissue damage, urinary tract obstruction and infection. Causes Kidney stones are caused due to the following reasons:
  • Dehydration
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Long use of diuretics
  • Increased mineral concentration in urine
  • Urinary tract infection pH changes
  • Urine pH alteration • An increase in water reabsorption by kidneys
Symptoms of kidney stones The symptoms of kidney stones are as follows:
  • Abdominal pain
  • Blood in urine
  • Frequent urination in small amounts
  • Hard to urinate
  • Licking of genitals
  • Pain while urinating
  • Urinary tract infection recurs
If your dog exhibits the above symptoms, take it to the vet immediately. Types The formation of bladder stones is due to precipitation of mineral salts and can have a diameter of three to four inches. The type of kidney stone depends on the salt forming the crystal, although there are chances of the crystal containing more than one type of salt. Kidney stones are usually made up of the following minerals.
  • Calcium oxalate
  • Calcium phosphate
  • Cystine
  • Struvite or Magnesium Ammonium Phosphate
  • Uric acid
Treatment The type of treatment depends on the location, type, and size of the kidney stones. The following treatments are suggested by veterinarians:
  • Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy (ESWL) It is a non-invasive method for removing kidney stones from the dog’s body. High-intensity sound waves are used to break up the stones into small pieces, making it easy to get flushed from the urinary tract.
  • Dietary adjustment If there is a low risk of urinary tract obstruction, the vet will prescribe a specialized diet to bring the urine pH down to normal levels or to increase thirst. These diets are low in magnesium, phosphorous, and protein. Within 12 weeks, the stones will dissolve as a result of this diet.
  • Medications The vet will prescribe medications or supplements to make the urine acidic, which will help in dissolving the stones. The vet may prescribe medications to increase the intake of water. It is done to dilute the mineral salts present in the urine. As there are chances of your dog developing urinary tract infection, the vet will prescribe antibiotics.
  • Urohydropropulsion When there is a high chance of the urinary tract getting obstructed due to small kidney stones, the vet performs urohydropropulsion. The vet will administer anesthesia and pass a urinary catheter through the dog’s urethra. The stones are washed out with saline solution.
  • Surgery If the stones are too big and cannot be removed through urohydropropulsion, the vet will recommend a surgery.
Recovery After the treatment for kidney stones is successful, follow-up appointments will have to be made every four to six weeks for abdominal x-rays and urinalysis to ensure the stones are not forming again. The vet will suggest a specialized diet once the stones have dissolved. As kidney stones can reoccur at any time, dogs have to be monitored on a regular basis.
Understand the Language of Cats
Image Source: Pixnio.com Your new cat is like a ba...
Image Source: Pixnio.com Your new cat is like a baby. Figuring out what he wants can be a challenge, especially if you are a new pet owner. Cats are extremely vocal animals. Understanding the cues your cat gives can help you connect with him. It’s all in the purr Ah…the purr. This deep, throaty vocalization that a happy cat makes can have you transfixed. While purring is one of the most common sounds that your cat makes, it isn’t the only one. The moment you get home after a long day at work, you are greeted with a meow by your furry friend. Meowing is a positive vocalization that cats use as a way to communicate with people. Another positive vocalization is the chirp. When your cat is excited and happy, you are most likely to hear chirps and trills. Your cat will even vocalize during times of stress. When threatened, he may hiss. This is indicative of the agitated frame of mind he is in. Your cat may even yowl. While meowing is used to talk to people, yowls are used to communicate with other cats. Growls and snarls are other common defensive vocalizations and are usually used when your cat faces a territorial threat. Cats have other distinct vocalizations that they use in select cases. Your feline may chatter when in a predatory state. You may notice this when he is chasing after birds and other small animals. Your female cat may caterwaul when in heat and screams are common during mating. Watch that body Cats have very varied non-verbal behaviors when compared to dogs. Pet owners should avoid applying canine knowledge on their felines, as it could lead to problems. While a cat loves having his tummy rubbed, you need to be aware when exactly to rub his tummy. If he has his claws out, better avoid this altogether. Bared teeth and claws out are signs that your cat is feeling aggressive. Another similar sign is when he has his tail up in the air and the bristles of his tail are spread out and sharp. One way to put your cat at ease is to blink at him slowly. Blinking is a sign of trust in the feline world. Do not stare at him without blinking; as your cat can construe this as a threatening gesture. You can even speak to him in a low tone to show that you mean no harm.Cats have myriad ways in which they communicate with their humans. With experience you will be able to understand what they are trying to say. With a bit of practice you can soon become a master in the language of cats.
How to Exercise your Senior Dog
Image Source: Pixabay.com As a dog ages, he loses ...
Image Source: Pixabay.com As a dog ages, he loses the ability to run fast, jump high and do other physically strenuous activities. Exercise can help senior dogs retain mobility. By providing safe ways to work their joints, you can make sure that your pet does not suffer from bone-related injuries and diseases. What happens when a dog ages? As they grow old, dogs begin to lose the strength in their bones. Just like humans, dogs can suffer from diseases such as arthritis and osteoarthritis. Here, the bones and cartilage start to inflame and then degenerate, which may result in the animal losing its ability to walk. By giving your pet the proper exercise it needs, you can ensure he has good quality of life. So what can you do to help your aging dog? Basic warm-ups The most basic exercise that will benefit your dog is walking. Start with a few minutes a day. This will help energize your pet and avoid developing stiff muscles. Another thing you can include in the warm-up session is stretching. Place a treat just outside the reach of your pet. When your dog reaches out for his treat, he will inadvertently stretch his joints and muscles. Walking backwards and side-stepping are other exercises that you can include. Static stretching is another helpful technique. When your dog is stationary, gently stretch his limbs. Massaging the limbs will also help improve the flow of blood and release any cramps that might be there. Workouts your dog will benefit from If your dog is inside the house, use the stairs to work his bones. Place a treat at the top of the stairs and have your dog climb up the stairs. You can do the same to get him to climb back down. If your dog cannot climb stairs, have wooden ramps built inside your house to help him walk. Walking is the best workout when your dog is outside the house. Add trotting and slow jogs to the mix if your dog’s joints allow it. It’s important that you consult with your veterinary doctor before you exercise your pet. Cool down Post-workout, it is imperative to do some cool down stretches. A sudden stop in physical activity will not only result in muscle cramps, but it may lead to an uneven breathing pattern and irregular cardiac rhythm. Go slow during the cool down phase. Use static stretching as a cool down technique. Make sure you keep water and nutrient supplements handy. Learning how to exercise old dogs and recognizing the consequences of fatiguing them will go a long way in helping you keep your pets safe. Speak to your veterinarian for advice.
Getting Through The First Six Months With A New Dog
Image Source: Pixabay.com As the saying goes, ‘A...
Image Source: Pixabay.com As the saying goes, ‘A dog is a man’s best friend’. But chances are that if you have brought home a rambunctious dog, you are more likely to ask yourself, “What have I done to deserve this?” The first six months with a new dog in the house is a crucial time to build the foundation of a healthy, joyful and rewarding relationship with your pet. It is imperative that during this time, you establish control and guide the dog towards a desired behaviour while making him feel safe and providing a loving home. Acclimatizing the dog Dogs are mostly excited and often anxious on their first day at a new home. It is a good idea to start establishing a routine immediately for the best results. Encourage your dog to look around your house and show him the place to relieve himself. Reward him with kind words when he relieves himself at the designated spot. Keep the dog on a leash while taking him around the house and disrupt any unwanted behaviour by yanking the leash once. Asserting leadership through housetraining As a dog owner, it is your responsibility to coach your dog to obey your commands. Here are some tips to housetrain your canine-
  • Crate train- Crates are safe spaces to confine dogs when you can’t watch him. Dogs dislike untidy sleeping areas and will learn to behave by lying down or moving inside the crate.
  • Food train- Provide treats to the dog to encourage good behaviour.
  • Maintain a pooping routine – Take them out for a walk the first thing in the morning, about an hour after they eat, before their supposed betime, and any other time when he seems restless.
  • Train without punishments – Hitting the dog or throwing things at him will only make him more aggressive. Instead you should make loud sounds to alert him of any unacceptable behaviour and praise him when he follows commands.
Regularity of meals and bedtime You must establish a feeding and sleeping schedule for a new dog. Dry food, fresh vegetables, frozen beans are healthy treats which can be given to the dog after giving it a command, such as, “sit”. Dealing with behavioural problems During the first six months, dogs often resort to disruptive behaviour that includes chewing, biting, jumping etc. Ensure that you find the trigger for such behaviour and give the dog enough exercise to tire it out. You can raise a happy dog by being consistent in your training and getting the dog accustomed to a routine. Make sure that you provide enough positive reinforcements, include the dog in family activities and be patient with your pet.
The Top 3 Dietary Diseases Diagnosed In Cats
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Image Source: Pixabay.com Dietary diseases are unfortunately quite common in our furry feline friends and more often than not, this is due to the poor nutritional qualities of mass produced dry food and wet food. This is why selecting the right brand of food or even cooking for your cat is crucial to ensuring that it leads a long and happy life. Chronic renal disease Chronic renal disease is one of the leading causes of death in kitties across the globe. It occurs when the kidney has been gradually decling and deteriorating over years, and certain types of breeds such as Siamese, Burmese, and Persian cats are more prone to this disease than other cats. In order to prevent the onset of this disease, cats need to be fed a diet high in quality proteins and low amounts of phosphorous and sodium. The quality of the protein is the main differentiating factor here especially for older kitties in order to prevent the disease from ever occurring. One of the major problems with this disease is that the cat may not display any symptoms for years to come, and when symptoms are displayed, it is often too late to do anything. Regular vet checks are the best way to ensure that your cat is in optimum health. Diabetes mellitus House cats are particularly at risk of developing diabetes mellitus especially as they grow older. This disease normally occurs due to a combination of high blood glucose levels, obesity, and a sedentary lifestyle. The symptoms are particularly hard to diagnose, and it is essential to keep your cat's weight at a healthy level. Prevent your cat from overeating and indulge the cat in regular exercise throughout its life. The best way to improve your cat's exercise levels is to get it a feline companion, which also has several other benefits. If your cat is diagnosed with diabetes mellitus, it will require periodic insulin injections, and it may continue for the rest of your cat's life. Urinary tract disease This disease affects a cat's bladder and urethra, and it results in the cat having trouble urinating and maybe even urinating blood. Urinary tract disease is particularly painful in cats and there are numerous possible reasons as to why it may occur. Some of the most common reasons include bacterial infections, dehydration, high ash content in dry food, and cystitis. Fortunately, the symptoms are pretty evident for this disease as the cat is likely to meow in pain while attempting to urinate. Urine flow is typically blocked and your cat will need to be put under some medication of your vet's choosing. Your kitty will also be put on a diet until the disease is removed entirely.
Is your Dog Obese? This is what You Should be Feeding them
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Image source: Maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, more than 50% of the dogs in the United States are overweight. As dogs are a part of our family, we love to pamper them as much as possible. We often give them food such as pizzas, chips, fried chicken, and more so that we won’t feel bad when we eat in front of them. Even if it isn’t in large quantities, it can impact the overall health of our canine friends. How to know whether your dog is obese? To know whether your dog is obese, run your fingers around its spine and ribs. Is it hard to feel both? When you look at your dog, do you see a waist between the hips and ribs? Does its tummy tuck in from the rib cage to its thighs? If your answer is yes for all, your dog is obese. What to feed an obese dog? With the right amount of exercise and the correct types of food, you will be able to make your obese dog fit again. When it comes to exercise, you know what should be done to make them lose weight. However, you need to feed it food that is low in fat which will complement its daily exercise. Here are four types of food you can feed your obese dog.
  1. Egg whites The majority of the calories and fat are in the egg yolk. By feeding your canine egg whites, it will get the same amount of protein minus the fat and calories. You need to either cook the egg or supplement it with Vitamin B. This is because raw egg whites without yolk can decrease biotin over time.
  2. Fruits and vegetables Fruits and vegetables such as apples, bananas, papayas, beans, broccoli, and celery, to name a few are low in calories but high in fiber, minerals, and vitamins. If your canine eats processed fatty foods, it will take time for the digestive system to get used to fruits and vegetables. To smoothen the transition, you can boil the vegetables and puree it in a blender before adding it to your canine's food.
  3. Low-fat meat One- half of your canine’s diet should consist of low-fat meat such as chicken, turkey, buffalo, goat, and venison. You should remove the skin and any visible fat from the meat to make it healthy. To make sure the meat has low amounts of fat, cook it by boiling. Skimming the fat off the meat broth is another effective method to keep the fat content to a minimum.
  4. Supplements If you want to ensure that your dog receives all the right vitamins and minerals, complement its food with supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids and l-carnitine. They will encourage weight-loss and improve your canine’s overall health. If you want to know more about which supplements need to be taken by your canine, visit the vet.
By adding the above to your dog’s diet, you will be able to cut down on the fat intake. If you have any doubts about what you feed an obese dog, leave a comment below.
Does Your Puppy Constantly Chew on Things? This is How You Can Make Him Stop
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Puppies are the cutest...
Image Source: Wikimedia.org Puppies are the cutest things in the world. Any video where a puppy does something adorable goes viral in a couple of days. However, your little canine friend has one quirky behavior that drives you insane. The moment you leave it alone, it would have pulled out your socks, shoes, slippers or anything that can fit in its mouth and start chewing on it. If you try to take it away, you have to play a game of catching the thief as the puppy will most likely run away with the object in its mouth. Although it is natural for your little canine friend to chew on things, it isn’t desirable when it chews on your personal objects and destroy your property every time you leave the house. Your tiny four-legged friend will chew on things as they are going through teething which happens to be a painful process. The gums get irritated and in order to alleviate its discomfort, it chews on anything that will fit into its mouth. However, if this behavior is not corrected, it can become a major problem once your little canine becomes an adult. Here are four tips on how you can make your puppy from constantly chewing on things.
  • Ensure that your little canine has chew toys You have to make sure that you have the correct chew toys so that your puppy doesn’t go around finding things to chew on. If you catch your little canine chewing on things it’s not supposed to, replace the item with its chew toy. By correcting the behavior rather than punishing your puppy will teach it what is out of bounds. If your little canine isn’t excited with its chew toy, get it a new one.
  • Puppy-proof your house Everything that you think your puppy may chew on should be kept away from its reach. For example, your little canine will love chewing on shoes, socks, and handkerchiefs to name a few. By keeping such items out of sight, they won’t get damaged and you won’t end up getting irritated with your puppy.
  • Give tiny four-legged friend attention At times, your tiny four-legged friend will chew on things as it wants your undivided attention. Ensure that your puppy gets all the attention it needs so that it won’t have to resort to destructive behavior to get some. Set aside some time every couple of hours to fulfill your puppy’s desire.
  • Exercise daily Another common reason why your tiny canine will resort to chewing is that it is bored of life in the house at the moment. To deal with boredom, you must exercise your puppy every day. This will keep his energy at a level that is considered normal. If your puppy has high levels of energy and it is bored at the same time, it will indulge in destructive behavior.
We hope these simple four tips will get you to stop your little canine from chewing things up. If you have any queries about the subject, leave a comment below.
Does ‘Black Dog Syndrome Exist for Real? Let’s Find Out!
Image Source: Pixabay.com You may find it hard to ...
Image Source: Pixabay.com You may find it hard to believe but racism does exist when it comes to adopting dogs from shelters and rescues. Black Dog Syndrome or Black Dog Bias is a phenomenon that is now recognized by dog shelters and rescues all over the world. The theory behind the syndrome is that large dogs that are black in color have much lesser chances of getting adopted by people and there is a much greater possibility of them getting euthanized. This is because black dogs spend enormous amounts of time in the shelter without ever finding a home. Common myths about black dogs The reasons as to why people tend to pick their lighter counterparts over black dogs are highlighted below.
  • Aggressive looks This is probably the most common reason anybody would give when you ask them why they didn’t pick a black dog. Black dogs are perceived to be more aggressive than those with lighter coats. People tend to associate black dogs with the likes of Doberman Pinschers and Rottweilers, who tend to be more aggressive than any other canine. Even if they are the sweetest dogs in the shelter, people find them more intimidating and less friendly than other canines.
  • Negative associations For centuries, humans have been conditioned to associate black with evil and white with good. All the negative superstitions have always been associated with the color black. For example, people associate a black cat crossing their path as a sign of bad omen. Even though the superstition is based on cats, the emphasis lies on the color of the cat. If you take a look at books or movies, you will always find a black dog getting associated with something that is dark and negative.
  • Shed more hair Another common myth about black dogs is that they shed more hair than their lighter counterparts. Even though this may sound absurd, people believe this with great certainty. In fact, the breed of the dog determines how much hair it will shed, not its color. Also, black hair can easily be noticed on furniture with lighter shades, which is considered as a nuisance. This is another reason as to why people don’t adopt black dogs.
  • Age faster People assume that black dogs age faster than their lighter counterparts as the area around the jaw becomes gray earlier than usual. This makes black dogs look way older than they actually are. Also, most people don't want to adopt dogs that are past their prime.
As you can see, black dog syndrome does exist in today’s world. Even though we are making great advancements in treating all humans equal, we still retain the old and archaic mentality when it comes animals. If we can change our mindset of associating black as negative or evil, perhaps greater number of black dogs will get adopted.
Why you need a Teeth Hygiene Routine for your Dog?
Image Source: Pixabay.com Imagine if you had to go...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Imagine if you had to go months without brushing your teeth or even for a couple of weeks. The implications will be severe as it has a significant impact on your life. Similarly, the teeth of your dog are no different. The majority of dog owners are unaware of the importance of regular teeth hygiene for their four-legged friends. The American Veterinary Dental College say that most dogs have some form of periodontal disease by the time they are three years old. As dogs have been domesticated, their lose their natural source of teeth cleaning and dental floss, which is the food they hunt. Even though dried and canned foods are high in nutrition, they don not provide the same level of dental hygiene as natural food. Importance of teeth hygiene routine Having regular teeth cleaning and checkup sessions can have a positive effect on your dog’s life in the following ways.
  • Bacteria removal By taking your dog regularly for dental cleanings and checkups, the vet will be able to remove bacteria and plaque that are present on the teeth. Due to bacteria and plaque buildup, it will eventually enter the blood stream of your canine friend. This will damage important organs such as the heart, kidney, and the liver. It will also damage the surrounding tissue as the bacteria releases toxins into the gum. If left untreated, the immune system will get activated and fight the bacteria. This will result in the tissues surrounding the gums to get damaged due to the white blood cells. Severe plaque buildup will severely affect the dog as the immune system gets damaged in the process.
  • Easily detect dental problems Even though it may look like your dog’s teeth are healthy, it might be the opposite. Suppose your canine is suffering from tooth pain, there is no way of knowing what is wrong with your dog. It is extremely good at hiding the pain from its owners. The vet will also look at the surrounding gums to assess the overall dental health of the dog. If there are other problems in the teeth of the dog, the vet will identify and deal with it before it becomes a major health concern.
  • Longer life span Did you know that good teeth hygiene is important in factors affecting lifespan? In fact, the overall health you’re your dog will increase by a good margin if you take care of its teeth. Over time, as the dog gets older, it will need extra dental hygiene requirements such as dealing with tooth wear and loss. If you are able to maintain your dog’s teeth on a regular basis, it will be able to live for much longer than expected.
Remember, it is extremely important that you brush the teeth of your dog on a regular basis. If you have any questions about teeth hygiene, leave a comment below to get it clarified.
Is Your Dog Ready For a Baby? Here’s How You Can Help
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Image Source: Wikimedia.org As an expectant mother, you would already have a birthing plan which includes the outfit your baby is going to wear, the music that has to be on your playlist and a list of things to be carried to the hospital. On the other hand, dogs also need a birthing plan as they don’t understand the changes that are taking place within the household. It can be quite overwhelming as dogs are used to being the only children of the family. This means that you need to come up with a plan so that your canines can adapt to the changes. Here are five tips you can use to ensure that your four-legged friends are ready for your baby.
  • Obedience training You want to have good control over your canine at all times. Do this by polishing the basic obedience skills of your dog. If you haven’t gotten around to training your four-legged friend, now is the time to do so. Your canine should be able to sit, lie down, and stay when you tell it to do so. By establishing yourself as the leader of the pack, your dog will begin to listen to you. Practice as often as possible so that you won’t have to raise your voice when you need to control your canine.
  • Differentiating between the dog’s and baby’s toys The toys you buy for your baby will look like your dog’s toys in its eye, making it harder to differentiate between the two. If it sees your baby’s toys on the ground, it will try to play with it. When you see your dog moving towards your baby’s toys, firmly tell your canine to stop doing so. If your canine has already picked up the toy, ask it to drop it. Slowly, your canine will be able to differentiate between its toys and the baby’s toys.
  • Capture baby sounds and smells You need to make sure that your four-legged friend is comfortable with the baby before it has arrived. For example, your dog may get anxious when it hears your baby cry in the middle of the night. To move past this problem, play a few recordings of a baby crying. Look at how it is responding to those sounds. If it is getting worried, start off at a lower volume and slowly build your way up. After a while, your dog will get used to listening to the baby crying. You would have also bought a wide variety of products for your baby. Make your dog comfortable with those products by allowing it smell them. This way it will get familiar with those smells and associate them with you. If you have any clothes that smell like your baby, introduce it to your canine so that they know what your baby smells like.
  • Doll training Doll training is one of the best ways to make your dog comfortable with having a new member around. You can pretend like the doll is a real baby and indulge in activities such as nursing, playing and carrying the doll. This way, you can make sure that your dog is okay when there is a baby in the house.
By following these simple tips, you will be able to get your dog ready for your baby. If you have any queries about this topic, do leave a comment below.
Is Your Dog’s Birthday around the Corner? Plan a Fun Birthday Party for Your Pet Buddy!
Image source: Staticflickr.com Are you thinking ab...
Image source: Staticflickr.com Are you thinking about your dog’s birthday which just around the corner? Are you finding it hard to come up with birthday ideas? Even though your canine may not know what a birthday is, it will surely appreciate all the extra affection, love, treats and toys it will receive on its special day. Hosting a party for your dog is not only a great way to have fun, it is also a brilliant method to get your dog to socialize with other dogs. Here are a few tips that you can use to plan a fun birthday party for your pet buddy!
  • Invitees The most important thing to your dog’s birthday party is the invitees. If your dog loves playing with other pooches or if it has a group of buddies, you can invite them over for the party. Keep in mind that it will be stressful for your four-legged friend if it isn’t acquainted with the canines in the party. To make it easier for your dog, introduce it to other dogs outside your house, to prevent any territorial issues. If your dog isn’t comfortable with other canines, you can call all the people your dog adores.
  • Location You need to select the best location for the party so that you can accommodate everyone invited to the party. If you are planning on having a lot of dogs and their owners for the party, have it in an outdoor location. You can have the party in places such as the local park, beaches where dogs are allowed, a farm house, and dog daycare. If there aren’t many invitees or if the dogs are small, you can have the party in the comfort of your home. However, keep in mind that you need ample space to accommodate your canine’s buddies. For example, they all need sufficient space for their frequent bathroom breaks.
  • Food Preparing food for your four-legged friend is a lot of fun even though it can be a little challenging. If you are planning on baking a cake for your dog from scratch, there are loads of recipes available online. The majority of the ingredients used can be obtained easily as it is similar to the ones found in cakes for humans. You can also buy cake mixes for dogs to make it easier to bake a cake. There are bakeries around that specialize in baking cakes for dogs. For snacks, you can have buy dog treats that are smaller in size. You can hand them out to canines to reward them for their good behavior and to keep them happy. If you plan on buying larger treats, give it as thank you gifts. This way, you will avoid any aggressive behavior between the canines. Also, you can purchase dog popsicles as summer time is approaching. Canines love it and it will keep them cool during the warmer season.
  • Activities There are tons of games for canines that you can choose from so that they can have fun. You can buy or rent inflatable swimming pools for the dogs. It is a fun activity and it will keep the canines cool during summer. You can host a game of fetch with all the dogs. Even though they will be hard to handle, it will be a lot of fun to see many dogs playing at the same time. You also need to provide a relaxation area for the canines. This place should be in a shaded spot and away from all the action. Place pillows and blankets in this area to make it comfortable for any dog who wishes to take a break from the games.
The above tips are just a couple of ideas you can use for your dog’s birthday party. You can get creative and add to these tips to make it even fancier. If you have doubts about planning a birthday party for your four-legged friend, leave a comment below.
Learn to make a DIY First Aid Kit for your Pet!
Image Source: Pixabay.com It is good to be always ...
Image Source: Pixabay.com It is good to be always prepared with a first aid kit for your best friend. You could pack the kit in anything. Many people use their old lunch box, but any waterproof case will do the trick. In case your dog loves water, do buy a dry bag. You will find it in almost all outdoor sports stores. Do note that what is fit for you may not be suitable for your doggie. You must never give human prescription drugs to your best friend without verification from your vet. Standard kit The following are part of standard DIY first aid kit for your dog:
  • Emergency contact numbers: The box should have three numbers. One number should be the vet's, and other for the animal emergency hotline. The last one should be poison control hotline.
  • Cotton balls: This is for all around application
  • Saline solution: This can be utilized to flush sand out of your pet's eyes or to clean wounds. The easiest way is to use contact solution.
  • Tweezers: This should be of a flat slant tip.
  • Scissors: This must be dull ended. Pointed ends must be avoided to make sure that you do more good than damage
  • Tick removal tweezers: These kind of tweezers are designed in such a way that the imbedded head can be removed. It it continues, there is a greater chance of infections
  • A good first aid book : Choose a good quality book with an excellent reputation. A good quality book in this case is one which provides solution to a wide range of complications, from the allergic reactions to the technique of wax removal from your pet's fur.
  • Latex gloves: You need it to take care of your friend. Buy a better quality pair.
  • Antihistamine: Use this to calm your pet if it is itchy. It could also be used to redice hives and swelling caused by insect bites including bee stings. Do call your vet prior to administering any dosage.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide: This can be utilized to induce vomiting if any accidental ingestion is made. Contact your vet prior to administering. Vomiting, in a few cases, may not be welcomed
  • Small turkey baster: This can be utilized to flush eyes or wounds for administering the medicine.
  • Roll, gauze pads and squares: If your dog is wounded, sticky bandages are not effective on a fur body. Special kind of bandages are available for this purplse. They are manufactured specially for dogs. These bandages will not stick to fur.
  • Disinfectant: This have multiple uses
  • Wound spray: Spray on the wound to help clean it. It will heal ulcerated skin, bites, scratches, burns and cuts.
Carry a few old blankets and towels when you travel. It is an excellent idea to carry some extra food for your pet and a second leash as well.
Do You Know How To Read Cat Food Labels? Find Out What Goes Into Your Cat’s Food
Image Source: Pixabay.com Most cat owners tend to ...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Most cat owners tend to go with the brand they trust rather than actively looking at what ingredients are being used. Irrespective of whether you purchase dry food or wet food you should ideally inspect the labels in great detail. Learning how to read the ingredients will allow you to take better care of your kitty. There are certain things you cat should not be eating. For example, learning to read food labels will prevent you from purchasing products with too many carbs. Plus, you should ideally test different foods out to determine what your cat likes the best. Components such as net weight, statement of intent, and statement of responsibility are all in place to ensure that the health of your cat is not messed with. Check the guaranteed analysis Under US law, every manufacturer is required to provide a guaranteed analysis of the package’s minimum content of crude protein and fat and maximum content of water and fibre. As the fat and protein are listed as crude and not digestible sources, and you need to examine the ingredients in detail to determine their digestibility. Learning how to interpret the digestibility of each ingredient is critical to determining its viability for your feline friend. Checking the guaranteed analysis is a crucial step in carefully comparing the dry matter basis of different foods. The ingredient list Both dry food and wet food will have their ingredients listed according to their proportion of weight in the total package. The list will be in decreasing order. By looking at the quantity of each ingredient, you will be placed to determine the digestibility levels. Certain manufacturers are also known to breakdown unfavourable ingredients and list them as a bunch of ingredients so be careful of this practice. For example, for ingredients such as corn, it is quite common to break them down into constituents to disguise their apparent quantity in a food package. Common ingredients include meat, meat by-products, fish meal, BHA, and brown rice. Carefully compare canned food and dry food In order to determine the benefits of either or, it is important to know how to read ingredient levels. For example, canned food will always contain a lesser percentage of protein and a far higher amount of moisture as canned food is mostly around 80% moisture. Dry foods in comparison have as little as 6% moisture. You need to convert the food to a dry matter basis and there are numerous free online convertors to assist you. This will allow you to compare protein levels and accurately determine the true nutrition level of what you are purchasing.
Is your Dog Low on Energy? 5 Ways to Get Him Excited about Playing
Image source: Pixabay.com Have you ever felt as th...
Image source: Pixabay.com Have you ever felt as though your dog is low on energy? Does your four-legged friend like in a corner when you want to play a game of fetch with it? Even though dogs are playful by nature, if your dog is bored, unhappy, or lonely, it is more likely to sulk around. Here are five ways you can get your furry friend excited about playing.
  1. Establish a routine Unlike humans who get bored with the same routines, dogs love having a routine in their lives. If they don’t know what to expect during the course of the day, they will feel stressful and avoid playing altogether. Set aside some time every day so that you can play with your furry friend.
  2. Use a variety of toys for different games There are occasions where your dog will be more interested in playing games with you when toys are involved. This means that they rather focus on their favorite toy than anything else you have to offer. You can use a variety of toys to spice up the playtime with your furry friend. Instead of only using a ball or a stick to play fetch, you can use a frisbee. If you want to play tug of war, you can use towels instead of ropes.
  3. Give treats to your four-legged pal One of the best ways to get your four-legged friend excited about playing games is to hand out treats before and after you play a game. Dogs love food and will literally do anything to ensure that they get the treat. Every time you get ready to play a game of catch, offer it a treat. After you are done playing with your dog, give it a treat to show that you are happy. This way, your dog will get excited every time you want to play with it.
  4. Verbally praise your furry friend Positive reinforcement such as “good boy/girl” or “good job” or “who’s a good boy/girl?” will work wonders when you have to get your dog excited about playing games. You will create a positive environment and it is a great way to complement your furry friend after an intense session of playing. Moreover, your dog will understand when you want to play with it, making it easier to get it excited.
  5. Allow your dog to play with other dogs One of the best ways to get your dog excited about playing is to introduce it to other dogs. Your four-legged friend will become happy when it is around other canines. If your dog is feeling lonely, this method will get it up and running in no time.
Don’t worry if it is taking time for your dog to get excited about playing with you. By following these simple methods, your dog will always be ready to play a game or two of fetch.
Is your cat bored? 5 Ways to entertain your fluffy companion
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Image credits - Pixabay House cats, particularly indoor cats, can be prone to boredom, and yes, I know, cats always look disinterested in what you are saying. However, kitty boredom is a real problem and it is believed to lead to depression. It is very easy for an indoor cat to slump into a cycle of boredom and start routinely displaying signs of neurotic behavior. There are numerous things you can do to keep your cat entertained to ensure that it will lead a long, happy life. Companionship is important If your cat spends a lot of time at home alone, consider getting another cat or dog or a pet it can 'hang with.' Companionship is essential to warding off loneliness and depression in your kitty. However, if your cat is older, introducing a new pet may be challenging, but it is worth it to give your furry friend a new friend. Two cats in the house will lead some productive playtime and you can feel less guilty about leaving them behind when at work. Music Numerous studies have proven that cats appreciate slow, soothing, and melodious sounds. Try out different types of music to see what your cat appreciates, and you should be able to gauge their level of interest from body language. Once you know what your cat likes, you can play the music on a stereo or speakers when you are away. Cats respond best to soft music, and you can ideally leave the music playing in one corner room so that your cat can move around when it doesn't want to listen to the music anymore. Play pen Having a play pen full of all types of cat toys is essential to ensuring cat happiness. Introduce new toys every couple of weeks or so so that your cat has some variety. You don't need to buy expensive toys and simple things such as laces and socks will make your cat go bonkers. Snacks and treats Let's face it, indoor cats will be always be a little fat and fluffy. You can set up a treat puzzle toy system where your cat's brain and muscles need to work to solve it and get the treat. Plus, it is an excellent way to ensure that your cat is not reliant on you for feeding. You can always set the amount of food that can be eaten by the kitty to ensure that it does not overeat. Play with your cat regularly You need to play with your cat(s) for at least 30 minutes on a daily basis unless your cat prefers otherwise. Cats are known to like routine so you can set a regular play time to keep your feline companion entertained. Playing is an excellent way to bond with your kitty and a good time to laugh at the way it reacts to certain items while playing.
Does Your Dog Need Probiotics?
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Image Source: Pixabay.com The most common source of probiotics available for consumption is perhaps yogurt. But what exactly is a ‘probiotic’ and how is it helpful for the body? The term ‘probiotic’ refers to “friendly” or beneficial bacteria (and yeasts) present in the gut. All animals, just like human beings, have billions of gut-friendly bacteria in their gastrointestinal systems. These bacteria help support digestion, offer protection against harmful pathogens, aid absorption of vitamins and other nutrients and also boost the immune system. Some of the common species of friendly gut bacteria include Lactobacillus, Streptococcus, Enterococcus and Bifidobacterium. While some species of immunity-boosting bacteria such as Bifidobacterium are present in the large intestines, others like Lactobacillus live mainly in the small intestine. Digestive Problems in Dogs Medical studies suggest that the gut is the most important (and the largest) immune organ present in our body. This is true for dogs as well. The gut facilitates the absorption of food in the body, while eliminating elements such as toxins and bacteria. But it is possible for this defense mechanism to collapse or break down, even in dogs. So what happens when your dog’s gut experiences functional problems? Well, it is likely that your pet friend will experience similar digestive problems such as diarrhea/constipation and vomiting. When studying gastrointestinal problems in dogs, it is vital to understand that these gut issues are usually related to the consumption of foods that your dog isn’t equipped to digest. Probiotics for Dogs Much like they help human beings, probiotics can offer multiple benefits to dogs as well. These are primarily relates to boosting immunity and aiding digestion. Probiotics are known for producing SCFAS or short-chain fatty acids. These SCFAs help restrict the activity and growth of various harmful bacteria (Salmonella, E.coli, Clostridium perfringens etc.) Bacteria and viruses can enter your dog’s body via the mouth. Probiotics work as a defense system against these bacteria and viruses, starting from the mouth, all the way down to the gastrointestinal tract of the dog. This means that your dog can enjoy higher levels of immunity with the intake of probiotics. Probiotics can also help minimize inflammation throughout the dog’s body, while putting it at a lower risk of chronic disease. And of course, probiotics aid digestion and absorption of vitamins and minerals. With probiotics, your dog is likely to experience better absorption of vital nutrients such as vitamin B-12. While probiotic supplements for dogs are easily available in the market, you can meet your pet’s probiotic requirements via natural sources like yogurt, buttermilk, soft cheese, coconut milk, kefir, fermented veggies etc. Tip: If your dog is sick and taking medication, alternate its antibiotic dose with probiotics for faster recovery!
Does Your Dog Have Separation Anxiety? Here’s What You Should Know
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Image source: Pixabay.com Is your dog losing his/her mind when you’re not around? Well, there’s a very good chance that he/she might actually be suffering from what is known as separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is a condition that is characterized by whining, barking, salivation, and destructive chewing of property. Now, when it comes to separation anxiety, it is necessary to differentiate between true separation anxiety and simulated separation anxiety. The latter form is actually a learned behavior. Your dog is basically pretending to be anxious to get your attention. However, true separation anxiety is when your dog becomes genuinely stressed due to your absence. Simulated separation anxiety can be dealt with in a gradual manner. For instance, you can begin obedience training and increase the amount of exercise your dog gets to burn all that pent up energy. However, true separation anxiety requires more attention. Cause of True Separation Anxiety There are several theories as to why dogs get anxious as a result of separation. However, there is still no real answer out there. Even so, experts have managed to identify a few commonalities among dogs that suffer from separation anxiety. For instance, separation anxiety seems to affect dogs adopted from shelters more than it affects dogs that have grown up with the same family. Some believe that dogs that have experienced loss previously could be more susceptible. Similarly, even a dog’s breed could play a role here. Breeds that are known to be more “people-oriented” tend to suffer from separation anxiety. Sudden changes can also cause a dog to develop separation anxiety. Just as humans get stressed due to change, dogs can also respond in the same manner. This is especially true if a dog gets left alone in a new environment. Even a change in the family dynamic can cause separation anxiety. For example, if a family member were to suddenly make an exit due to a job change or maybe even a divorce, the dog can be affected. Treatment There are drugs to treat separation anxiety or anxiety in general. You will need to consult your vet concerning this. Another method involves desensitization. Here, the dog is gradually acclimatized to living without the human companion. There are animal behaviorists who can guide you better regarding this method. Generally, results are noticeable in about 8 weeks. However, the best solution is to prevent the condition. But, this can only be applied in the case of a pup. By leaving your pup alone as often as possible, you can get him/her used to being around without a companion. Another method is to use positive reinforcement. By associating something positive with your departure, you can train your pup to be alone. For instance, you can hide snacks around the house, which he/she can then spend time searching for after your exit.
Is Chaining Your Dog Justified?
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Image Source: Pixabay.com Throughout the United States, millions of dogs have to spend their entire lives outside by getting their chains fixed to the ground or a pole. Commonly known as chaining or tethering, it is a common technique used to contain dogs. Is it a good idea to chain your dogs or should you let them run around as they please? Let’s take a look to find out. Why do people chain their dogs? There are many reasons as to why people chain their dogs. The underlying causes are highlighted below.
  • They are known to run away the moment they are free.
  • The owner is trying to safeguard them from other threats such as another dog.
  • The fence surrounding the house is damaged or there isn’t one in the compound.
  • It’s hard for the owner to keep them inside their house.
  • The landlord doesn’t allow the tenant to keep their dogs inside their house.
  • The pet owner has no idea on how to keep their dogs under control.
  • It’s a family practice.
Why you shouldn’t chain your dog Dogs are social creatures who need their regular dosage of interaction with people and other animals. Long-term confinement and restraint can have severe negative impact on the physical and mental health of your furry friends. Any dog that is kept chained over extended periods of time is aggressive, anxious, neurotic and unhappy. When dogs are tied to a chain, their necks become sore. Their vulnerability to parasites and insect bites increase significantly. Also, the collars can grow into the skin of the dogs, making the entire process painful. The chances of strangulation, entanglement, attacks and harassment by other dogs, are higher than normal. How chaining your dog can be dangerous? Chaining dogs to a pole or any object can have serious implications on their behavior. Dogs respond to situations based on their fight or flight instinct. As they are unable to run away from the situation, they learn to respond by being overtly aggressive. The most common victims of such attacks are unsuspecting people who get close to these dogs. On top of that, these dogs can be a danger to society if they manage to break loose from their chains. They will most likely attack anyone who crosses their path. Even if you have legitimate reasons, you shouldn’t keep your dogs chained for extended periods of time. If you are finding it hard to control them, learn different ways to discipline them. If your pet lives outdoors, make it a habit of bringing them into your house. You can protect them from various elements such as weather, dogs, and other people. Remember, no matter what the situation, it is never justifiable to chain your dogs.
The 5 Best Foods for Keeping Older Cats Healthy
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Image: Pixabay.com Did you know that cats live longer because of improved medical care and diet? Due to remarkable advancement in the world of cats, their geriatric age has been redefined to 11 years. The negative effects of ageing can be dialed down with the help of good nutrition. By taking care their health, you can prevent and manage several health conditions that are common at that age. Understanding the complexities of specialized nutrition for older cats can be cumbersome and difficult. To make your life easier and to ensure your feline friends get all their nutrients, here is a list of the five best foods.
  1. Wellness Complete Health Senior Cat Food The best line of products for your older feline friends is the Wellness Complete Health Senior Health Deboned Chicken & Chicken Meal Recipe. It is filled with lean protein to aid the muscle mass of cats. When compared to the adult formula, the senior cat food has eight percent lesser calories. Chondroitin, fat, fiber, and glucosamine supplement the recipe, for a balanced diet and ageing joint protection.
  2. From Mature Gold Cat Food If you want to meet the dietary requirements of your cats without compromising on flavor and quality, go for Mature Gold Cat Food. It is specifically designed to meet the calorific needs of senior cats, helping them maintain weight. To ensure your cats get high-quality protein, chicken, ducks, and eggs are added to the formula. Potatoes, white rice, and pearled barley are included for digestible carbohydrates. Minerals, probiotics, and vitamins supplement the formula, for optimal nutrition.
  3. Nutro Indoor Senior Cat Food Nutro has a small selection formulas that are made specifically for older cats. Chicken/White Fish & Brown Rice are two types of dry food available. Chicken maintains the lean muscle mass of cats while brown rice helps in digestion. Whitefish reduces hairballs, improves digestion, maintains weight and boosts energy. Soft Loaf Cod/Chicken Recipe are two types of wet food that are easy to chew and swallow. They have low carbohydrates and high protein to meet the dietary requirements of your feline friends.
  4. Blue Buffalo Healthy Ageing Cat Food Blue Buffalo has eight products to meet the nutritional needs of your older cats. They contain brown rice, chicken, and turkey are some of the main ingredients in their food products. They don’t have any artificial additives or soy, wheat, and corn. Blue Buffalo also has food that helps cats with various medical problems such as gastrointestinal support, food tolerances, weight management, and urinary care.
  5. NutriSource Senior/Weight Management Cat Food Their dry formula food for cats is completely made of natural ingredients for optimal nutrition in cats. The first ingredient for the recipe is the chicken meal, a source of high animal protein. Dried eggs and fish meal are added as supplements. Digestible carbohydrates such as barley, oatmeal, and brown rice are present in the formula. Essential fatty acids like sunflower oil and chicken fat are also included. To make it easier for your cats to absorb and digest food, the protein molecules are chemically bonded with chelated minerals.
The quality of diet for your feline friends determines the longevity of their lives. To ensure all the dietary requirements of your cats are met, add either of the five products to your shopping list.
Tips for Preventing Your Cat from Peeing Outside the Litter Box
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Source: Static.pexels.com No matter how much you adore your little furry pet, you don’t want to spend your day cleaning up after them as they go around peeing everywhere, except inside their litter box. Also, it could be very disheartening to witness them dirtying your expensive carpet or linen on a routine basis. So how do you break this annoying habit and get your cat to use the litter box? Let’s find out. Tip#1: Check for an underlying medical issue Before you begin to address your cat’s problem, it is important to assess whether it is medically fit or not. Sometimes a cat may appear to be absolutely fine, but a detailed veterinary exam could help reveal a complete picture of its health. So what is the connection between your cat’s health and peeing outside the litter box? Well, veterinarians inform that resistance to pee in the litter box could be a clear sign of a medical problem in the cat. In majority of the cases, the cat might be experiencing excessive urination, urinary incontinence or painful urination. Therefore, a visit to the pet is critical to ensure that there isn’t any medical reason behind this behavioral problem. Tip#2: Keep the litter box clean You know how cats are naturally inclined towards cleanliness, right? A dirty litter box might discourage them from using it and cause them to find other places to urinate (such as your carpet or living room floor). Therefore, it is important to keep your cat’s litter box clean throughout the day. Tip#3: Get an extra litter box For most cats, a single litter box may not be enough. It is a good idea to have a second litter box in the home so that the cat does not have to run to another floor or to the other end of the house to pee. The idea is to make it easier for your feline buddy to use its litter box. An alternative litter box could prevent it from dirtying other general areas of the home. Tip#4: Check for territorial problems Often when there are too many cats in a single home, territory-related issues are likely to arise. These problems can also affect the cat’s peeing behavior. There might not be enough litter boxes placed at different locations in the house. Cats like privacy; so you need to ensure that there are sufficient litter boxes, preferably placed in private spaces for all cats. Covered litter boxes are even better. Tip#5: Positive reinforcement It is a great idea to reward your cat with a treat or a playing session whenever it does end up using its litter box. Similar to dogs, cats also respond well to any kind of positive reinforcement.
Can a Pet Protect Your Baby From Obesity and Allergies?
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Image credits - Pixabay Research suggests that having pets in the house could actually protect a baby from getting obese or suffering from allergies. This is primarily due to the bacteria in pets. According pediatric epidemiologists, furry animals, especially dogs, have higher amounts of ruminococcus and oscillospira in their gut. These bacteria have been linked to reduced risk of allergies and obesity. Canadian Research Proves Pet Bacteria is Good Anita Kozyrskyj, an epidemiologist at the University of Alberta in Canada, worked with her team to study over 700 children in Canada. At the end of the research, they found that babies who are exposed to pet animals while they’re still in the womb (and even up to the age of 3 months) have high levels of oscillospira and ruminococcus in their bodies. As mentioned earlier, these bacteria are associated with a lower body mass index. According to Kozyrskyj, the two kinds of bacteria had a tendency to double when there was pet in the home, especially a dog. She says that when an infant is exposed to the bacteria and dirt carried around by their pet companion, it helps build and strengthen their immunity. The interesting part though is this: the exposure begins to have an impact while the baby is still in the mother’s womb! Kozyrskyj says that even though the study does not establish a direction connection between having pets and the prevention of obesity or allergies, there is definitely evidence to show that exposure to pets during pregnancy could influence the gut microbe composition in the to-be-born baby. This is because it has an impact on the mother’s skin or vaginal microbes. Another Reason for Having a Pet! As if there was any dearth of reasons for having a pet, now you have another very convincing one-the protection of your baby against lifestyle diseases and allergies. Medical science has already proven that pets have the ability to lower stress levels and blood pressure in human beings. They are also excellent companions and help prevent/reduce feelings of loneliness while boosting self-esteem. Research shows that those who have a cat or dog at home are less prone to asthma too. According to Kozyrskyj, who studies the entire birth timeline with her team, the fetus’s immunity may begin to develop through transfer of bacteria from pet to the mother and continues to build for up to 3 months after birth. During this time, the immunity of the infant is not affected by any external factor, whether antibiotics, bottle feeding or C-sections. This team of medical experts in Canada also found that when a woman is in the presence of a pet during her pregnancy, there is reduced risk of transfer of vaginal GBS to the baby during birth.
The Myths About Feral Cats You Should Debunk Today
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Image credits - Pixabay Most people tend to confuse a stray cay for a feral cat and there are several myths around feral cats that need to be debunked. So let’s get started! Myth: A cat is an indoor animal Truth: Even though cats are commonly adopted or bought at pet stores today, this doesn’t change the fact that a cat is in fact an outdoor animal. You should know that cats have an inherent instinct to hunt for shelter and food and protect itself from danger. This species is born to live in the outdoors and is capable of doing so with just a little help from humans. Cat behavioral experts suggest that not every cat is socialized to share a living space with humans. Therefore, it might be difficult for several feral cats to stay indoors as pets. They might end up feeling stressed and fearful when confronted with human relations and interactions. Takeaway: Feral cats may be able to enjoy a better, healthier life when left in the outdoors. Myth#2: Feral cats don’t transmit diseases to humans We’ve already established that feral cats are better off living in the outdoors. Another myth associated with this group of cats is that they can spread diseases to humans. Not true. Majority of the diseases carried around by cats may only spread from one cat to the other. These diseases do not get transmitted to the human body. There is a higher chance of catching an infection from another affected person than from a feral cat. Myth#3: Feral cats can attack kids and adults This is highly unlikely, until and unless you deliberately intimidate or provoke the feral cat. Otherwise, a feral cat is not inclined towards hurting humans. It is important to understand that a cat might be as anxious or nervous as you are around them. It might be a good idea to give the animal some breathing space so that you don’t appear to be a threat. Remember, kittens can be quite shy. You might perceive it to be ferocious, but its soft side is often a surprising revelation! Myth#4: Extermination is best for a community with feral cats The fact is that extermination is neither very effective nor very humane. It ends up creating a vacuum in the local ecosystem. With the removal of feral cats, neighborhood cats tend to fill up the void by breeding to the area capacity. On the other hand, the TNR technique seeks to bring down the feral cat number by neuter/spay methods. It also helps improve the quality of life of these animals by offering food and shelter. There is a natural decrease in euthanasia rates and development of a healthy relationship between community members and feral cats.
Facts About Animal Homelessness You Should Know
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Image source: Maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com We know that cats and dogs are among the most loving and loved animals all over the world. These two species tend to get a lot more attention than the others and are perhaps the top choice of pets among most people. The main reason behind the popularity of cats and dogs as domesticated animals is that human beings tend to identify with these two groups of animals. They have a certain level of intelligence, a playful nature and can be excellent companions when you’re alone or need to uplift your mood. Animal homelessness: a serious reality The surprising fact is that although cats and dogs are quite popular with human beings, it might be wrong to assume that they all of them manage to find safe shelters and are looked after by their owners. Here are some interesting facts about animal homelessness that you should know:
  • Millions of animals enter U.S. Animal Shelters The Humane Society of the United States reports that there are approximately 70 million stray dogs and cats found in America. Also, only about 6.5 million of these animals (mostly cats and dogs) are brought into U.S. animal shelters spread across the country each year. Out of this, about 3.3 million animals are dogs while cats make up 3.2 million of the total count. Although there has been a decline in the number of animals being brought to these animal shelters in America (the count was nearly 7.2 million back in 2011), the statistics still remain quite high.
  • Reasons for homelessness Reports suggest that the two primary reasons for homelessness and for animals ending up in shelters are: surrender by the guardians or getting picked up by animal control officials. Further for every one homeless person in America, there are five homeless animals.
  • No spaying or neutering Only 10% of the total animals brought into shelters get neutered or spayed. The North Shore Animal League’s SpayUSA reports that an un-spayed female dog along with her offspring could produce 67,000 more dogs in just six years. Further, in the case of an up-spayed cat, the number could go up to as much as 2,072,514 kittens in just 8 years.
Here are some other important facts about animal homelessness:
  • Only one out of every ten dogs would manage to get a permanent home.
  • Nearly 2.7 million cats and dogs are killed each year owing to overfilled shelters and lack of adoptive homes.
  • Approximately 30% of the dogs living in shelters are ultimately reclaimed by the original owners or guardians. On the other hand, only 2 to 5% of the cats find their way back to their guardian homes.
How to Approach a New Dog You Don’t Know
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Image Source: Dogbazar.org If you’re a dog lover, it might be natural for you to walk up to any new dog and pet it or give it a treat in the very first meeting. The fact is that these are the exact behaviors that might instill fear in a strange dog. In fact, it might even cause him to become physically aggressive with the new person. Let’s learn a few things about how to approach a new dog!
  • Avoid having a face-to-face introduction with the animal It is important to understand that just like human beings, dogs have certain boundaries too. They dislike being started at or watched intently by any new person. This is why you will notice that dogs approach new people (and animals) in curves. So the ideal way of approaching a new dog is have your side rather than your front towards him. This will prevent it from feeling uncomfortable and/or threatened.
  • Greet the owner first If you want to make friends with a new dog, you should always greet and connect with the owner or handler first. Have a conversation with this person and ignore the animal completely. You will find that the dog will automatically start warming up to you and may even invite you to pet him!
  • Allow him to do a thorough examination without moving Don’t move when the dog does a sniffing trip around you. Give him all the time he need for completing this routine task. Remember, dogs take this examination very seriously and may sniff your hand incessantly before declaring a friendship. After the animal seems satisfied with his inspection, you may slowly take the same hand and pet or scratch the dog gently (dogs like to be touched behind the ear and take it as a gesture of affection). Keep a constant watch on his reaction and never insist if he feels nervous with your behavior or movement.
  • Don’t be scared If you’re always scared of approaching or meeting new dog, then this fear will be sensed by the animal almost instantly. And fear can cause a dog to become aggressive. If you’re afraid for some reason, it is best to avoid the meeting altogether. There is a possibility that your gut is saving you from a potentially ugly scene.
  • Pet the animal correctly A lot of people tend to get excited and pet a new dog without thinking whether or not it is the correct way of showing affection. As a general rule, avoid petting the top of a dog’s head. It is best to pet him under the chin, below the head or on the sides and chest area.
The Link Between Better Canine Diets and Longevity You should Know About
Image Credits: Pixabay Aging is an unavoidable and...
Image Credits: Pixabay Aging is an unavoidable and complex process that takes place in all living beings. As dogs are a part of our family, we try to find different ways to increase their longevity. A good canine diet with the right levels of nutrients can have a positive impact on their health, allowing them to age gracefully without any problems. Why should we look at the link between canine diets and longevity? Ultimately, the longevity of your dog depends on their environmental conditions and genetic makeup. It is estimated that 75% of canine longevity is dependent on environmental influences while only 25% is based on genetics. Nutrition is the energy component and building blocks your dog needs on a daily basis. If we want our four-legged friend to reach their maximum genetic potential, right high-quality nutrition is the key. Whether you are a breeder or a pet owner, the link between a healthy diet and longevity is important. Your dog will be able to lead an active, healthy, and long life right from puppyhood to their twilight years. A study by Eukanuba showed how high-quality nutrition and the right care helped dogs enhance their genetic potential, allowing them to live longer than usual. What will a good diet do for your four-legged friend? A good diet will do the following for your four-legged friend:
  • Enhanced body condition and muscle tone All the cells in the body are made up of protein which is crucial in building organs, tissues, muscles, hair, and skin. It is also required to make new cells and repair damaged ones. The protein in your dog’s diet will make sure that they are able to build strong muscles and maintain them.
  • Improved digestion Carbohydrates in the canine diet will provide fiber to your dogs, helping them digest food properly and eliminate wastes from their body. Digestion is extremely important as it ensures your four-legged friend’s body absorbs all the nutrients in their food. It also makes sure that they can easily remove waste products from their body.
  • Increased immunity All the minerals and vitamins found in your dog’s food will continually work together to keep their body’s immunity and metabolism running at optimum levels. The vitamins reduce any damage done to their cells on a regular basis. Minerals boost the function of cells that are responsible for maintaining the overall health of your dog. This, in turn, will improve their immunity, significantly reducing their susceptibility to diseases.
There is numerous high-quality dog food available in the market but they have different levels of nutrients. Ask your vet about the dietary requirements of your dog so that you can get the best of the lot for them.
This is What You Should be Knowing Before Administering Gabapentin to Your Dog
Image Source: Pixabay.com Gabapentin is essentiall...
Image Source: Pixabay.com Gabapentin is essentially a pain relief and anticonvulsant medicine used for relieving nerve pain in cats and dogs. It may also be used occasionally for treating seizures, though it isn’t the primary treatment approach. Gabapentin for Treating Seizures in Dogs Gabapentin is also commonly sold under the name of ‘Neurontin’. As mentioned earlier, this drug may be used in combination with other medication for the treatment of seizures. A seizure is defined as a physical symptom of any irregular electrical brain activity. It is basically a convulsion. When a person or animal suffers from a partial seizure, only a part of their body is affected. On the other hand, a generalized seizure will impact the complete body system. Veterinarians inform that dogs suffering from chronic seizures usually require treatment for controlling these events. Even though Gabapentin is not the primary technique or strategy for treating seizures, it is often administered with various other drugs. The drug is effective because it inhibits calcium channels. This helps prevent calcium from entering the cells and causing seizures. Gabapentin is often given to dogs affected by cluster seizures, i.e. those who suffer from multiple seizures in a very short span of time). Dosage The standard dose given to a dog to control/prevent seizures is 4.5 mg to 13.5 mg per pound. The dose is administered to the dog twice or thrice a day. Chronic pain can be treated with a much lower dose (approximately 1.4 mg per pound, only once in a day). In case you miss out giving a Gabapentin dose to your dog, you can give it to them as and when you remember. But if you don’t realize till the next day, you should skip it completely. Double dosage is hazardous to the dog’s health. In case an accidental overdose occurs, then you need to take you dog to the vet as soon as possible. It is important to know that Gabapentin overdose could lead to extreme drowsiness and even depression. Side Effects and Precautions When ingested by dogs, Gabapentin may have certain side effects including ataxia and mid sedation. Here are some precautions that you need to take when administering Gabapentin to your dog:
  • Use with caution if the dog has decreased renal or liver function.
  • Don’t discontinue the drug abruptly. Withdrawal is likely to cause rebound pain or seizures.
  • Oral administration of antacids could hinder proper absorption of Gabapentin.
  • Gabapentin has been associated with teratogenic effects and fetal loss. It may only be used during lactation or pregnancy if the benefits offset all potential risks.
The Canine Nutrition Fails You Should Know About
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Image Source: Maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com A well-balanced nutritious diet is essential not only for ensuring healthy growth and development of your four- legged friend but also for keeping a number of diseases and ailments at bay. Here is a list of a few common nutrition-related problems that regularly affect canines and how you can identify and treat them before they transform into more seriously debilitating diseases. Bone and Joint Issues Typically found in larger breeds, joint issues often affect smaller dogs as well. Constant joint and muscle pain in dogs can be attributed to excessive weight arising from overfeeding and lack of physical activity. Also, an accumulation of waste metabolic by-products in your dog’s system might cause excessive pressure and strain on their joints leading to acute discomfort. It is therefore advisable that you carefully monitor your canine’s diet and ensure that he is being fed regulated portions of meals. Dull and matted coat Healthy and lustrous fur is a definitive sign of your dog being fit and healthy. On the flipside however, if his coat is losing its sheen and becoming dull and lifeless, it might be indicative of a possible deficiency of certain vitamins and minerals in his system. In such cases, you must ensure to feed your dog with a well-balanced diet that is supplemented with sufficient concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids. Digestive Issues Flatulence, unregulated bowel movements and unexplained illnesses are some of the common indicators of gut-related digestive problems in dogs. While most digestive issues occur due to a food reaction or allergy to a particular treat or food ingredient, in some cases overfeeding can also lead to the production of excessive wastes and toxins that might eventually upset your dog’s stomach. If you notice any kind of digestive issues in your dog, it might be a good idea to try an easily digestible diet that does not lead to the production of toxins. Gum Diseases While most dog owners believe that feeding their dogs hard chewable pet food will help keep their teeth clean and free of tartar, the real culprit that needs to be tackled is the accumulation of waste and toxic materials in the saliva. Some of the common symptoms indicative of a possible gum disease include bad breath, redness or inflammation, loss of appetite, staining of teeth and so on. A well-balanced nutritious diet is the key to ensuring the oral and dental health of your pet. In addition to feeding him with a nutritious and balanced diet every day, you must also encourage your dog to engage in regular physical activity for stronger bones and muscles and proper circulation of blood in his system.
How To Train A Guard Dog
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Image Source: Pixabay.com Training your dog to become a guard dog requires a lot of time and patience. This training not only protects you and your family from threats, but will also make him comfortable and well behaved in everyday scenarios. Guard dogs are trained to alert their owner by barking or growling and are typically never trained to be attack dogs or to respond aggressively. Preparation Proper socialization is essential to train your dog to be a good guard dog and the best time to begin this is when your puppy is between three to twelve weeks old because beyond this age, they become increasingly cautious and are difficult to socialize. When your dog is well socialized, he will be comfortable in his normal environment. He will also be less fearful and more relaxed but will still retain a dose of healthy suspicion for unfamiliar and potentially dangerous situations. Ensure that your dog is aware of your territory. Take you dog around your property regularly for it to identify your territorial boundaries and it is important to not allow your dog to bark at people who are outside your property. Under any circumstances, do not allow your dog to ever attack people. Training your dog on basic obedience is a key factor to an obedient guard dog. You should make him respond to your commands like sit, stand, bark and most importantly to cease barking when commanded to. Begin by teaching your dog to “Speak” on command and praise him if he responds by barking. Next, command him to stay “Quiet” and immediately give him a small treat if he keeps quiet. Practice this training everyday consistently and begin training at the puppy stage itself and this will eventually give you control over your dog whenever required. For this, you can also send your puppy for obedience training classes wherever available around your neighborhood. Some agencies even provide at-home training services. Another important aspect of your training is encouragement and strengthening his confidence. Always encourage your dog’s bark announcing strangers who enter your property by going to see why he is barking, praising him followed by the “Quiet” command. Build his alertness by having people the dog doesn’t know to act like they are entering your house and ask them to flee when he barks while you praise him. Ensure to never encourage your dog to chase anybody within your premises. Key Factors Always remember that your dog is very sensible and equally sensitive and it is very important for you to train them right, from the puppy stage itself. Encourage your dog, praise him, be playful but always ensure he knows who is alpha.
How Talking to Your Pet Shows Your Intelligence
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Image source: Static.pexels.com Even as die-hard pet lovers, some of us find the idea of talking to our pets silly. Why wouldn’t we find it silly? After all, pets can’t understand a word of what we say, apart from identifying sounds as commands. Also, we belong to different sets of species altogether. So, who in their right minds would waste time trying to converse with pets, right? Well, it seems that we might be wrong and also dumber than our counterparts who actually do talk to their pets. At least, that’s what Nicholas Epley, a Behavioral Science Professor at the University of Chicago, has to say. Anthropomorphization Dr. Epley points to human-animal conversations as being the result of Anthropomorphization. Anthropomorphization refers to the act of ascribing human characteristics to animals or objects. In other words, when humans talk to their pets, they treat them as a human being. According to Dr. Epley, anthropomorphizing isn’t a sign of childishness, which is how it is perceived commonly. Rather, it is a sign of human intelligence. He also adds that humans do it all the time and cites examples of how some people name objects such as their home or their car. It is simply a unique form of intelligence. Epley suggests that humans may do this because of three factors – our need to see faces everywhere, our need to attribute intelligence to things we like, and the human association with unpredictability. To put it simply, what Epley is trying to say is that anthropomorphizing is how humans deal with certain situations. It is actually the result of our brain responding to certain stimuli. For instance, when Tom Hanks attributes human characteristics to a ball in “Cast Away”, he does so in order to alleviate loneliness and retain his sanity. Of course, that may not be the same as talking to a dog or cat. The circumstances are quite different, but, the reason for engagement is the same – we are trying to make sense. Keep Talking! However, Epley’s studies also found that people stop conversing with their pets as they grow older because they fear coming off as foolish or even, insane. But, Epley suggests that people continue talking with their pets without fearing judgment as science tells us that it’s not dumb at all. When we say things like, the dog is being cheeky or the computer is acting weird, we are just exhibiting signs of social cognition. In other words, our brains are active and functional. It’s simply the result of having a brain that has developed to perceive other minds. When we talk to people more, we are basically trying to find out who they are and what their intentions are. The same principle could be at work in human-animal interactions.
Do You Live in a Small Condo? Consider Getting These Dog Breeds
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Image credits - Pixabay For pet lovers that live in apartments, size can be a major area of concern. However, the good news is that there are plenty of breeds that can easily be accommodated into smaller spaces. So, if you’re one of those people, please go through this brief list to know about which breeds are the best fit for you. This is a short list. So, we suggest you do some more research on this topic on your own later. Basenji Basenjis can be quite mischievous, but, they make for great apartment dogs. This is because they hardly bark and are known to be quite reserved. Also, they don’t grow too big. Their average height tends to be 18 inches and their average weight is usually around the 25 pound mark. Boston Terrier You’ve probably seen these guys in your own neighborhood or on TV. Boston Terriers are fantastic apartment dogs. They are small and super polite. Very rarely have there been complaints of Boston Terriers creating a ruckus. Apart from the fact that they are quiet dogs, they are also some of the most loyal and friendly. Here’s a fun fact: Boston Terriers are referred to as “The American Gentlemen” and it’s not only because of their black and white fur patterns. English Bulldog The English Bulldog is a medium sized breed, which is good news for condo dwellers. Also, these dogs aren’t too fond of activity, which means you’ll likely find them taking naps or simply lying down. You might think that’s a stereotype because of how they’re portrayed on TV. But, those TV shows and movies aren’t wrong – Bulldogs are a lazy bunch. For a condo dweller, that can be a good thing because you won’t have a noisy, hyperactive blob running around the house. Chihuahua Dogs probably don’t get tinier than Chihuahuas. This breed is exceptionally small, which means they are perfect for small living spaces. Also, they hardly need any exercise and can be carried around with ease. They’re quite loyal to their owners as well. However, they do have problems getting used to people; so, make sure you’re always present in a social setting. Dachshund Dachshunds, jokingly referred to as “sausage dogs”, are adorable because of their tiny size and sausage like shape. Their size makes them ideal for a condo. Other than that, they’re also energetic and vibrant. There’s never a dull day when you have Dachshund at home. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel These guys are some of the most easy-going breeds you’ll find. They are very sociable, which means you won’t have problems with neighbors and other dogs. They rarely weigh more than 18 pounds, which, of course, limits the amount of space they require.
How To Care For Your Pet During An Extended Power Outage
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Image Source: Pixabay.com An extended power outage poses a threat for many since most of the modern-day facilities run on electricity. It not only affects humans but animals too. In extreme weather conditions, electricity is used to power heaters and air-conditioners. Even though animals have a way of finding their area of comfort, extreme weather conditions are dangerous for pets. Here are some ways in which you can care for your pet during an extended power outage. Store food Power outage for a day can be tolerated but when it extends to more than 24 hrs. one of worst problems is that of food. Everyone has food stored but most of them will be in the freezer. Without electricity, chances are high that they won’t be of much use. It is important to store food that can last for a long time without the freezer. Luckily, pet foods don’t need refrigeration and can be used as such. Make sure you have enough stored. Keep warm/cool During a power outage, you’ll want to keep yourself and your pet warm/cool during the period. Make sure you have enough blankets to keep warm. If it’s hot outside, then keep a shady area ready where you can easily shift. The basement is the best place. Be active In extreme cold conditions make sure your pets are active to keep the blood flowing. It will also keep them warm and away from getting frost bites. Activity can include walking, running, exercise or games. Activity with your pet will also ensure that you stay warm as well. However, if it’s warm, make sure your pet drinks enough fluids to stay hydrated as well. Oxygen backup This goes for aquariums and fish owners. A power outage means a loss of oxygen as well. You can use a battery-operated power supply or a generator or even an UPS. Make sure you have enough power to supply oxygen for a week. Usually an extended power outage will be notified to you before it happens so, you have enough to prepare yourself. Conclusion Power outages not only affects hums but it also affects pets as well. However, there are many ways in which you can protect your pet from extended power outages. Remember to store enough food and water to last over a week. Keep your pets active, especially if they are cats or dogs, through exercise and games. Keep warm blankets and a shady place ready during emergency. If you have pet fish, then make sure to keep a back-up of oxygen supply ready. You’ll get time to prepare for extended power outages so, make the best of the resources available.
Is Your Dog Hesitant To Go For A Walk? Here’s What You Should Know
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Image Source: Pixabay.com Physical exercise is a bare essential for any animal. While animals in the wild don’t require special exercise routines, pets must be routinely exercised to keep them healthy. One of the best forms of exercise is walking. Walking ensures that the blood flow remains stable and the muscles remain toned. However, many dogs don’t enjoy going for walks. If your dog is one of them there are some things you need to know about your dog’s behavior. Unpleasant experience It is likely that your dog experienced something unpleasant during preparation for a walk or during the walk itself. It could be the neighborhood or the weather or some other problem. Maybe a new dog in the neighborhood has sacred him/her. It is up to you to find out the reason. Dogs are animals who usually love running around. However, bad experience can negatively impact their psyche to the point that they avoid doing that particular activity completely. You are disinterested Dogs are highly receptive animals and they often reflect the mood of their owners. If you don’t enjoy walking, then your dog won’t either. Maybe you enjoy running more than walking and your dog will show the same behavior. It is very important that you enjoy your walks and show interest in taking them if you want your dog to walk. Your dog hates leash Some dogs are feisty animals and don’t like being put on a leash. You know it’s the best thing to do when you go out in public places but your dog may not understand that. The first thing that you should do is give leash training. If you can’t do that, then take him/her to a training session where they will teach you how to do it. Physical problems Maybe your dog is simply suffering from physical ailments due to which he/she is in no mood to go out for a walk. Try to find identify any cuts or bruises that might be present on your dog’s body. If you don’t find any, take him/her to a vet and get a check-up done. Sometimes, the problems might be internal too. Conclusion Walking is the best form of exercise for dogs and every owner must ensure that their dog gets their daily dose of walking. However, if your dog refuses to walk then try to identify the problem first before looking for a solution. Your dog might be afraid of walking due to a bad experience or he/she might not like leash too much. Since dogs are close to their owners, they might reciprocate the same feelings. So, maybe your dog hates walking because you hate walking. Identify the problem and find a solution.
The Things Your Dog Needs This Spring
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Image source: Pixabay.com If you are like most people, then you will consider your dog as a low maintenance family member. Even if you incorporate healthy items into its food, not much money is spent on your dog. All these however, does not excuse the fact that it also needs pampering and care. At the onset of spring, the dog will spend greater time outdoors. There is a good chance it will be exposed to common diseases or encounter outdoor pests. There could be seasonal allergies as well. Flea medication and tick medication This is important in case you forgot to give the dog tick and also flea medication in the winter time. Spring time is the best place to begin. Fleas could infect the dog with tapeworm. Ticks could transmit Lyme disease, canine anaplasmosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and canine ehrlichiosis. When the dog is sufficiently old, it is advisable to use monthly preventive medication so that fleas and ticks are kept away. It is important to regularly check for flea dirt and fleas. If you and your dog spend a lot of time in the woods, it is important that you check the dog for ticks. Preventative medications These include vaccines. Your dog is most vulnerable in spring, susceptible to diseases like leptospirosis, heartworm, rabies and Lyme. These will only increase as the weather gets warmer. Check the records or ask the vet to ensure that the dog is fully compliant with the vaccines. Ensure that you are also administering a number of other vaccinations, like heartworm prevention, as per the vet recommended schedule. Do note that not all vaccines are to be taken every year. You should only keep records and check with the vet of what your dog needs this year. New tags If you are not sure of whether your dog's tags are up to date? Check them whether they are or not this spring. Ensure they are valid and include the current address. In case you are buying new tags, ensure that you follow the official recommendation on what you must or must not put on the new tag. Whatever you do, do not put the name of your dog on the tag. People with ulterior motives will find it easier to steal your dog if you do this. Even if your dog is an indoor one, it helps to put a current dog tag on it. Microchip In case your dog does not have a microchip, consider getting it this spring, This is important as both you and your dog will be outside much more in the lovely weather. Microchips are highly recommended by veterinarians, animal rescue organizations and breeders.
How to Reduce Stress in Shelter Dogs?
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Image Source: Wikimedia.org The majority of dogs that get placed in a shelter find it stressful even if the shelter is welcoming. They would have gotten separated from their previous families, they have to live in confined spaces, and more importantly, have to deal with other dogs in close proximity. These changes can severely affect dogs and reduce their chances of getting adopted if steps aren’t taken to alleviate stress. Dogs under stress will become destructive and start to defecate or urinate in their kennel. Some dogs might become inactive and go to the hide in the back of the kennel or they will stop eating. Others might get aggressive and bark with increased frequency. Increased stress levels will make dogs more susceptible to diseases. They will also take longer to recover if they fall sick. To reduce stress in shelter dogs, take the following steps:
  • Dog Appeasing Pheromone (DAP) Collar There are synthetic canine pheromones available that are proven to reduce stress in dogs. There are diffusers available but they only remain effective in small shelters. The best option is to use DAP collars which remain effective, irrespective of the size of the shelter.
  • Soothing music Studies have shown that dogs respond to music and stress levels reduce when classical or ambient music is played. The atmosphere inside the kennel will become calm and the barking will reduce significantly. Avoid using other genres as it might increase stress levels rather than reducing them. Observe the dogs for a while to see if they like the music you are playing.
  • Social contact Dogs are extremely social and love getting attention. Talking to dogs, petting them, and giving them a gentle massage goes a long way in reducing stress. Dogs need to know that they will be loved even when they are in a shelter.
  • Regular exercise Shelter dogs tend to get stressed out as they have to live in restricted or caged environments. They love running around, going for walks, and playing with their toys. It’s important to encourage dogs to play and run as much as possible. Exercises are a good way to get stress out of their system.
  • Minimum noise level It’s vital that you maintain the noise level as low as possible in a shelter as dogs are sensitive to noise and high noise levels can increase stress exponentially. Teach the dogs to remain quiet by giving them treats. If the dog barks when you get close to the door, walk away from the dog. By rewarding good behavior, dogs will understand that they shouldn’t unnecessarily bark.
It’s important that you keep dogs stress-free as much as possible. It will keep them physically and mentally healthy while they stay in a shelter.
How To Maintain Your Dog’s Safety In Water?
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Image Source: Pixabay.com Dogs are a part of our family and they love to come along with us when we go to the pool, lake, river, or ocean. Even if they hate taking baths, jumping into water is one of their favorite past times. The last thing you ever want to happen is your dog getting injured in water. So how do you maintain your dog’s safety in water? Here are 5 ways that you can use to ensure that your dog has a safe and happy experience when in water.
  • Teach your dog how to swim Believe it or not, only some dogs are natural born swimmers whereas some are not and others fear water and believe that they will never swim. Regardless, you need to spend quality time with your dog and teach them how to swim. You can start with smaller pools so that they won’t drown or injure themselves. If you are finding it hard to teach your furry friend on how to swim, take the help of a professional trainer.
  • Invest in a dog life vest Life vests are available for dogs and you should invest in one if you plan on taking your dog to a deep pool, river, lake or ocean. Even if your dog wants to play only for a small time, it is always better to be safe than sorry. Dogs also get tired if they swim for a long time or because of their age. A life vest will keep them afloat regardless of the situation which will keep them safe. Pick a vest with a bright color so that you can easily spot them in water.
  • Learn how to give CPR to dogs Accidents happen even if you take extreme care to ensure that nothing can ever happen. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation or CPR as it commonly known can save the life of your four-legged friend if they drown in water. It is the only proven technique that can bring your dog’s breathing back to normal. It is absolutely essential that you learn CPR so that you can provide first aid just in case something goes wrong.
  • Provide safety training Do you let your children go near water bodies without providing adequate safety training and supervision? Treat your dogs the same way even if they are good swimmers. Dogs need to know all the safety rules so that they can protect themselves from potential accidents. If you are taking your dog to the pool, teach them how to get into the pool and how to get out of it so that they don’t panic when they are in the pool. Teach your dog not to drink the water in the pool (easier said than done) as it can increase the chances of drowning and the chlorine in water can harm them.
  • Take them for a health checkup Even though swimming is a fun activity, it is also an intense activity as it requires a lot of stamina. There may be a number of health issues which can restrict your dog’s swimming ability so take your dog to the vet before you take them into the water so that you are informed.
Swimming is a great activity to beat the summer heat and with these 5 simple tips, you and your dog will be able to enjoy swimming while remaining safe from potential accidents.
Why Is Dog Parkour The Next Big Thing
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Image source: Pixabay.com Parkour or free running is an urban sport which involves vaulting over staircases, jumping across rooftops, climbing high walls, rolling, swinging, and what not. Ever since the people got to know about parkour, it’s been extremely popular. We regularly see videos on Facebook and Instagram about parkour enthusiasts doing extremely difficult courses where buildings are their obstacles and they finish the course with style and ease. Movies have implemented parkour into their stunts as it looks exceptionally phenomenal. It isn’t easy as it looks because you need to have ninja-like agility and be exceptionally fearless when free running. Dog Parkour On the other hand, you would think that parkour is only for humans, but even dogs have started doing it. It might be a little hard to believe that your four-legged friend can do tricks like parkour enthusiasts. As dogs are fast and agile, they find it easy to jump off walls, climb fences, make sharp turns on tree trunks and building corners to name a few. Ever since parkour has been adapted to dogs, it has been rapidly growing in popularity as many places are offering urban obstacle courses that are meant for dogs. Some places are even offering courses to teach your dogs a couple of tricks. It’s the best way right now for dogs to get physical and mental stimulation. International Dog Parkour Association It started off as a fun exercise but now it has become so popular that there is an International Dog Parkour Association. The association has standardized moves and offers grades and titles to dogs that successfully complete its levels. There are 5 levels of titling:
  • Training
  • Novice
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • Champion
Each level is significantly harder than the previous one and dogs have to master specific skill sets to earn the title. The specific skill set includes the following:
  • Crawling under obstacles
  • Jumping into boxes
  • Balancing on objects as wide as the shoulders of the dog
  • Using two feet and four feet on a variety of obstacles
  • Tic Tac or placing all their feet on an object that is placed at an angle of 45° and make a tight turn after it
On top of that, the owners and their dogs need to get creative while clearing the obstacles so that they can look different from other teams that are taking part. The sport works on the strength and balance of the dog. It is the perfect sport for dogs that live in the city as it is an engaging and fun exercise.