Winter Safety Tips for Your Dog

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care, Dog Tips

Winter Safety Tips for Your Dog

Be aware of exactly how cold it is, including the wind chill factor. A doghouse is good to have but may not protect them from frostbite on their extremities. Be sure to bring your pet in out of the cold. Put down a warm blanket for them to sleep on, since tiles can be cold. You can also purchase beds made for dogs at your local pet store
Another misconception is that snow is a substitute for fresh water. Make sure that your pet always has fresh water available to drink, regardless of the weather conditions.
Fur can provide a measure of warmth for your pet, but fur that is long can also pick up clumps of snow and ice, making it uncomfortable for them. Trim the areas around the paws to keep this from happening. Dogs with short hair don’t get the same level of warmth as dogs with long hair. Buy them doggie sweaters or knit one yourself. They will keep your dog warm and make them look even more adorable.
Many areas salt icy streets to provide traction. This salt or deicer can be painful to dogs, if they get into cracks in their paws. By rubbing a thin film of petroleum jelly on the bottom of their paws, it will lessen the amount of salt that sticks to them. When you get back home, be sure to clean their feet so that they will always be able to walk comfortably.
Damp fur can be uncomfortable for your pet. When coming back from a walk in rainy or snowy conditions, be sure to dry them off, preferably with a blow dryer.
The cold of winter can be just as dangerous to your dog as the summer heat. Use common sense and keep him safe and warm.

You Must Use Good Dog Care

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care

You Must Use Good Dog Care

Having a pet can be one of the greatest blessings for people of any age. Pets often become more like friends to the people who own them. They provide hours of entertainment and fun during the best times in life and they provide comfort and companionship during life’s hardest seasons. Many people choose to make a dog their pet of choice. When owners practice good dog care, dogs can be some of the cleanest and greatest pets on the earth. Not all dog owners, however, are experienced in good dog care.

Proper dog care is important for all dogs. If you are going to keep a dog as your personal pet then you had better do what it takes to take good care of your dog. There is only one reason for all of the neglected dogs that live in many homes around the world: selfishness. When dog owners are selfish with their time, energy, and affections, good dog care practices fly out the window and dogs are left without owners who really care for them.

If you are a dog owner or are thinking of becoming one, commit to making good dog care choices. One of the biggest things that many people do not realize about dogs or any other pets is that they take time. If you have no extra time in your life then I suggest that maybe having a dog or another pet is not for you right now.

One of the biggest elements of good dog care is taking time to be with and care for your dog. Many breeds of dogs need owners who will spend lots of time with them and give them attention. You can not ignore your dog and expect to have a good relationship with it.

Good dog care takes much more than time. Any dog owner knows that most dogs take energy. Most dogs need to be walked and played with outside. If you do not have the energy to give your dog the attention it needs then you should consider getting a less demanding pet. Dog care requires consistent attention and playfulness.

An important part of good dog care is keeping tabs on the health of your dog. Providing healthy food, taking time to let your dog run outside, making regular visits to a groomer to get haircuts and baths, and of course seeing a veterinarian are all parts of good dog care.

Good dog care means work. But I guarentee that if you put time, energy and care into the life of your dog, you will enjoy being a dog owner and your dog will enjoy living with you for years to come.

Your Dogs Shedding and Bald Spots

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care, Dog Health

Your Dogs Shedding and Bald Spots

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Your Dogs Water and Beverages – Things Pet Owners Should Consider

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care, Dog Health

Your Dogs Water and Beverages – Things Pet Owners Should Consider

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

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

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

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

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

Could A Homemade Diet Be Best for Your Dog?

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care

Could A Homemade Diet Be Best for Your Dog?

A good formula for a homemade diet is one half cereal, rice, or kibbles, and one half meat, including its natural fat, with green or yellow vegetables added from time to time. Since they can be made to measure for each individual dog, these combinations would be ideal if they weren’t to much bother. Aside from taking more time and trouble than the other methods, a homemade diet requires a sound knowledge of canine nutrition.

Table scraps are definitely insufficient for modern pets who we want to thrive, not merely survive. They are often the direct cause of obesity and various allied skin disorders too. Dogs with unusually big appetites or with a tendency to obesity will keep their figures if you cut down on the starch and increase the vegetables, to the proportion of one meat, one fourth kibbles, and one fourth vegetables. Older dogs may need reduced protein to spare their kidneys the task of nitrogen elimination.

Build your dogs meals around the foods that are highly recommended for dogs:
Beef: (ground or chopped for puppies in chunks for adult dogs, raw or cooked. Dogs prefer their meat a little tough, and they need the fat found in cheaper cuts).
Lamb and mutton
Chicken
Horse Meat
Beef Hearts and Kidneys
Beef Liver (no more than once a week, as too much or too often causes loose stools.
Eggs, hard-boiled or scrambled (The yolk may be given raw, but not the white, which in its raw state destroys biotin, a useful vitamin in the dogs intestine).
Rice, whole wheat, barley, oats, buckwheat
While wheat biscuits or toast
Carrots (cooked or raw, grated and mixed with his meal, or whole for chewing)
String Beans, spinach (chopped or mashed)
Cottage Cheese (excellent for weaning puppies)
Unfermented natural cheese, such as Swiss and Edam Apples and Pears

On the other hand, certain foods should be considered taboo:
White commercial bread
Cabbage (which causes flatulence and is difficult to digest)
Potatoes (hard to digest and not very nourishing)
Starchy Vegetables, such as dried beans
Spicy dishes and sauces
Uncooked egg white
Processed cheese
Pork (unless it is lean, well cooked, and served infrequently)
Raw fish
Delicatessen meats
Unboned chicken, rabbit and fish
Cake and candy
Alcoholic beverages
Chocolate of any kind

Which ever method you choose for feeding your dog, it is best to stick to it. Once he has become accustomed to a certain diet, he will be upset by any sudden change. The upset is apt to take the form of constipation if you change from prepared products to fresh ones, and diarrhea in the opposite case. If a change is needed, make it gradual by mixing the old with the new until his body adapts to the change.

Dog Fleas & Ticks

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care

Dog Fleas & Ticks

Dental Care For Dogs

August 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Dog Care, Dog Health

Dental Care For Dogs

Some people don’t realize that dental hygiene is as important for dogs as it is for human beings. Just like in people, dogs’ teeth can gather plaque after eating. When plaque builds up and hardens it becomes a coarse brown substance called tartar. As tartar accumulates it can work its way under the gums and cause painful infections and gum disease. This goes on in the mouths of dogs just like it does in people. You brush your teeth every day, probably three times. What does your dog do?

Teeth Brushing for Doggies

Veterinarians recommend that dog owners brush their dog’s teeth at least twice a week to keep the buildup of tartar at a minimum. Most pet supply stores carry specially designed toothbrushes and toothpaste just for dogs. Remember that a dog’s sense of taste and smell is far more acute than that of a human and the zesty, tingly, mint taste of toothpastes for people will be extremely awful to a dog. Try brushing Rover’s teeth with Crest just once and it will likely be the last time he lets you anywhere near him with a toothbrush. Use the specially designed doggie toothpaste.

Dental Chew

Some people don’t have the time or patience to brush their dogs’ teeth on a regular basis. If you’re one of these, you’ll want to care for Chopper’s choppers in another way. A dog’s natural tendency to chew is a built-in dental care mechanism. Dog biscuits break into small chunks when chewed and rub against the teeth, providing a cleaning service. There’s no substitute for brushing your dog’s teeth, but if you can’t do that, make sure he gets some sort of crunchy dog biscuit on a regular basis.

Mouth Diseases in Dogs

Dogs that do not receive proper dental care and do not have access to crunchy teeth cleaning foods run the risk of several types of mouth disease. These can be as mild as gingivitis (a gum disease that results in swollen, inflamed gums) and as serious as a bacterial infection that can spread through the dog’s bloodstream causing damage to vital organs. You owe it to yourself and your dog to take care of his teeth.

Doggie Dentistry

Dental services are available for dogs, just like they are for people. A dog’s teeth can be filled, capped, and extracted if necessary, just like a human’s. The best course of action, however, is to avoid the need for such services by properly caring for your dog’s teeth. If you can avoid unnecessary pain and discomfort for your furry friend, you should do so. Preventative doggie dental care can save you money as well. Doggie dental procedures can be quite costly.



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