Archive for December, 2017

Christmas has almost arrived; so start planning out the gifts you would be giving to your family and friends.

Here are some DIY easy and quick ideas for you to decide a gift for your dog-owner friends. A gift for their pooch is often enough to make their owners happy. If their dog is quite attached to you, then, never think of going to the Christmas party without a gift for your furry lover. Dogs love to have surprises too

DIY Nylon Monkey’s Knot Toy:

http://cdn.wonderfuldiy.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Tie-a-Monkeys-Fist-Decorative-Knot-F.jpg

All you need is a 1-inch thick nylon cotton rope, two twist ties (to secure the ends while making) and scissors. The DIY monkey’s knot is a little tricky at first but is fun to make. You can stuff the fist-sized knot with some favorite doggy treats before tying the final knot. Once you are done, remove the twist ties and wrap the knot in a gift paper with easy to open ribbon knot; for the dog to do it all by himself. You can make 4 to 5 Monkey’s Knot toys in green and red colors to bring a feel of Christmas to the gift.

Dog-owners would love the toy as it’s hand-made and requires their dog’s mental stimulation to untie the knot and get the surprise out.

For reference: http://www.handsoccupied.com/rope-ball-surprise-dog-toy/

DIY Dog Treat Jar:

https://img1.etsystatic.com/101/0/7600384/il_fullxfull.1048685041_7raq.jpg

Begin by preparing dog’s favorite peanut-butter-bacon treat. The ingredients you require are:

  1. 3 pieces of bacon, precooked and chopped
  2. 1 egg
  3. ½ cup peanut butter
  4. ¼ cup beef or chicken broth
  5. 1 cup whole wheat flour
  6. ½ cup quick cook oats
  7. 1 Tbsp. honey

Pre-heat the oven to 300 degrees. Mold the dough into your desired doggy-treat shape. Bake for 20 minutes.

You can bake any other puppy favorite homemade treats for your friend’s dog.

Lastly, Fill a Mason jar with doggy treats. Apply Modge Podge on the lid and sprinkle golden, silver, red or green glitter on the lid to add some Christmas fun. Later on, clean up after applying another layer of Modge Podge, once the first one dries out.

Reference: http://petcouponsavings.com/homemade-peanut-butter-bacon-dog-treats/ and https://prettyfluffy.com/diy-tutorials/diy-projects/holiday-gift-diy-treat-jar

DIY Self-designed Umbrella:

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/f5/f9/33/f5f93382cdf159f1d647f3aa56db0447.jpg

Have you found your dog-owner friend’s home decorated with pictures of the dog all around? Is he/she is obsessed with dog-related shirts, mugs, etc? Then, we have a perfect DIY gift idea for your friend!

First, get a clear umbrella from a dollar store. Start designing it by tracing dog emoticons or quotes in every umbrella section using permanent markers or paint markers from the inside. Fill in the traces and you are done.

To give it a Christmas touch, hang some removable Christmas ball ornaments at every edge and wrap green ribbons on the hand stick.

Reference: https://paperplateandplane.wordpress.com/2011/05/19/design-it-yourself-umbrella/

 

Christmas Themed Sock Donut Toy:

https://prettyfluffy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/DIY-Donut-Toys-For-Dogs.jpg

Search out for a pair of Christmas themed thick or long socks at a dollar store. Cut off the tip of the sock and start rolling it inwards till a bun-like donut is formed. With the help of a needle and thread, sew the open edges to keep the sock from getting unrolled. Stack the donuts one above another and wrap them up in a transparent and rectangular plastic box. Add some green and red ribbon knots for final garnishing.

Dogs love to chew on these sock donuts for hours. Doggy treats may be stuffed inside so that the dog plays for hours.

Reference: https://prettyfluffy.com/diy-tutorials/diy-projects/diy-holiday-doggy-donut-toys

5. DIY Dog Cookie Wreath:

http://cdn3.volusion.com/qkyz6.uayv5/v/vspfiles/photos/E-TTZ-84469635-2.jpg

Prepare Bone-shaped cookies for your friend’s dog. Cut a cardboard in a circular shape of a hollow wreath. Tie the cookies with the help of red, green or white ribbons along the line of the cardboard in a circular form. Finally, a ribbon bow at the top or bottom of the wreath can be attached to give it a complete look.

The dog cookie wreath is a common DIY Christmas gift that has been loved a lot by dog owners. If you are not sure about the other DIY gift ideas as you are unfamiliar with the dog and dog-owner, this cookie wreath will win the heart of the dog-owner as well as his dog definitely.

 

There are plenty of DIY gift ideas out there but these five ideas will fit perfectly into the theme of Christmas, and the dog-owners will appreciate your efforts.

I have intentionally avoided dog costume and dog stocking ideas as they are mostly owned by the dog owners themselves or get gifted by the other friends. When it comes to standing out of the crowd, go DIY.

 

Author Bio:

James Shore is a part-time dog-trainer and dog behavior consultant. He is a professional freelancer with years of experience in dog training. He is interested in finding out fun ways to handle dog behaviors, specifically, Labradors to help dog-owners enjoy their companions at all times. His pet-passion led him to develop https://www.labradortraininghq.com/ to help people.

Winter season is here, and like humans, our dogs also need protection against the cold. Although there are dog breeds that love the snow and are more adaptable to the cold weather, there are many that require extra care. You don’t want for your fur—baby to fell ill, right!

So here are ten excellent winter care tips that you can follow to keep your pooch safe and healthy this holiday season.

1.    Protect the paws!

Protect your pooch’s paws by using booties; it will protect him from many diseases such as hypothermia. Also, keep the hair on his feet and between his pads trimmed short as that will prevent the build-up of ice-balls. Don’t think that it is okay for your dog to have a quick walk outside without the booties.

2.    Wrap your pooch up

Many dog-parents assume that their pup doesn’t require protection from the cold, that is not true at all. Just as you need warm clothes to survive the weather, your pooch also requires a sweater or a coat, especially if he has a thin fur. There are many coats available for dogs of different sizes and shapes, buy one that is comfortable and does not hinder your dog’s movement.

3.    Use pet-friendly chemicals

People use chemicals such as antifreeze to winterize their pipes; such products are poisonous to dogs.  It is best to use pet-friendly chemicals around your house. But even if you do use such products make sure you keep them out of the reach of your pet. Prevent him from licking sidewalks and always keep a strict check.

4.    Keep your pooch away from the fire-place

Dogs are curious animals and are up to some new adventure every day. Your dog might feel cold and would go near the fireplace. Prevent him from going too close to it; avoid other heating sources that might be dangerous for your pooch.

5.    Keep him hydrated

There is a misconception amongst dog owners that dogs can only get dehydrated in hot weather.  That is not true; your dog needs access to fresh water in winters. The dry weather causes to lose the body moisture, so water is essential.

6.    Pay attention to his diet

The cold weather adversely affects your dog’s joint, skin and coat health. Make sure you add supplements to his diet. You can feed your pooch foods that are rich in omega three such as fish oil.

7.    How to treat kennel cough

Your dog might get infected with kennel cough in winters. Take the necessary preventive steps to protect your dog against Bordetella, disinfect the air around him and boost his immunity through diet and exercise. If your dog does catch it, you can feed honey and coconut oil to treat the disease. Get your pooch checked by the vet to avoid any complexities.

8.    Eating snow is a big NO

The primary issue with snow is that it hides everything underneath so you wouldn’t know what your dog has consumed if he has eaten. Chances are he might ingest any poisonous substance and fall ill. So make sure you don’t let him eat snow at all.

9.    Warm bedding is needed

Dogs love a comfortable bed just as much as humans do especially in winters. Elevated beds, comforter, and blankets can help your dog stay warm.

10.    Watch the calories

It is the holiday season, and we are all enjoying the winter treats. Well, your dog needs his winter treats too, to help resist the cold but that does not mean you should overfeed your pooch. Keep an eye on his caloric intake especially if your dog stays indoors.

Follow these ten tips and enjoy the holiday season with your fur without any worries.

 

Sources:

http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/15-winter-care-tips-for-your-dog/

http://dogtime.com/dog-health/31865-7-myths-dogs-winter

https://www.healthypawspetinsurance.com/blog/2015/01/20/5-common-winter-illnesses-in-pets/

 

AUTHOR BIO:

Jenny Perkins is an Animal Behavior Specialist and a passionate writer. She loves to write about the nutrition, health, and care of dogs. She aims at providing tips to dog owners that can help them become better pet parents. She writes for the blog Here Pup.

By H. Davis

 

As most experienced pet owners know, a puppy’s teeth are sharp and typically mature within a predictable time. But it’s important to realize that as teeth are coming in, your puppy’s gums could be sore throughout the process. That’s because their mouths are filled with 28 tiny razor-sharp teeth that your fingers and toes somehow always find their way in. Although this is an annoying stage to go through for both parties, it’s something that’s completely normal for them to do and something you can help them overcome with proper house training.

 

“Why does my dog chew on everything?” is a great question that doesn’t necessarily have an easy answer. If you’re tired of finding mismatched socks around the house and picking up pieces of carpet, sit back, relax, and consider the following:

 

Chewing is Natural for Dogs: It’s their way of exploring the world around them – the same way baby’s do – since they’re naturally curious. In other words, they learn about new environments by seeing, smelling, listening, and of course, tasting. Unfortunately, for your favorite pair of shoes or piece of furniture, the majority of these canine life lessons involves putting these things in their mouth.

 

Dogs use their mouths the same way as humans use our hands. They’re not tasting your shoes or chewing on them because they want to purposely destroy it, they’re feeling it. But that isn’t the only reason dogs chew on our personal belongings. Puppies, for example, chew during their teething stages. Older dogs, on the other hand, typically use their mouths to bite and carry objects around as a way of playing with owners – they mean no harm. Another possible source could be hunger. Really hungry dogs, for instance, will typically chew on household items when they’re searching for food.

 

Analyze the Problem: If you notice that your dog is chewing excessively, the first thing you should do is get to the root of the problem; work with your veterinarian to figure out what triggers this behavior. Puppies, along with younger dogs normally chew when they’re interested in playing. However, if they’re chewing on furniture well into their adult years, it could a separate issue involves. In most cases, the problem usually results from a lack of exercise, playtime, or environmental change. That’s why experts recommend that pet owners allow their furry friend to get lots of exercise and give their pet’s time to explore and adjust to a new environment after a recent move. This helps make the moving process a lot less stressful for both of you. Another way pet owners can see what their dogs are doing away from them is by videotaping them – using a baby monitor or mobile device. Again, this is to help you determine whether or not your pet is misbehaving or just going through a phase.

 

Don’t View it as a Negative: Generally speaking, after a long day of work, the last thing you want to do is come home to a house covered in pieces of furniture. If this happens to you, however, the last thing you want to do is raise your voice and yell or spank your dog. Although many pet owners believe in this method, the reality is that it doesn’t work. Dogs aren’t children, which means they aren’t able to connect their misbehaving actions with your reactions. If you hit your dog, they will simply react and respond to the pain with fear without fully understanding why they’re being punished.

 

Instead, pet owners should reward good behavior and redirect bad behavior. For instance, you get out the shower and see your dog or puppy chewing on your favorite pair of jeans. Make noises (other than yelling) and call their name. Once they come to you, grab one of their toys and give them praise for being so obedient.

 

Treatment for Excessive Chewing: Excessive chewing is normally associated with anxiety or boredom. Treatment for this behavior first begins by making sure your dog is getting enough exercise and has lots of social interaction – with both humans and other animals. The next step is to try using different dog toys to see if that does the trick. Every animal is different, and some dogs prefer simple toys while others prefer more complex toys. You can try covering their puzzling toys with peanut butter, or stuffing it with their favorite food. Remember not to keep your pup’s toys on the couch if you’re trying to train them not to chew on the furniture. Proximity, in this case, is king. Instead come up with a special place to keep the toys like a basket, bin, or even a steel locker if your dog is especially enthusiastic. If your dog continues to chew on household items, furniture, or clothing, it might be best to go see a veterinarian.

 

During that time, you should also evaluate your behavior as well. Animals do an amazing job of sensing our emotions. With that being said, the best way to find out if you’re the cause of the problem is by confronting yourself. Reflect on if there’s something stressing you or your family out. In most cases, pet owners don’t even realize they’re the cause of the problem. If you’ve had a recent tragedy happen in the family – death, divorce, or financial problems – chances are, the dog is just misbehaving to get your attention. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to both of your behaviors. Dealing with grief after a tragedy is a complex issue, but it can be even more stressful on a dog who doesn’t understand why everyone’s being mean or sad.

 

Good luck with your puppy (or dog) and enjoy guiding them through a destructive-free life filled with lots of love, excitement, and playtime. Before long, the thoughts of them being nipping, chewing little monsters will soon be a distant memory.

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Thanks for the read! Did I miss anything important? What are some other ways pet owners can prevent dogs from chewing on household and personal items? Feel free to leave a comment below.

Winter walks with your puppy is going to be shorter unless you are a proud owner of Siberian husky, Alaskan Malamutes, Tibetan Mastiff and more such breeds who find the freezing temperature comforting.

Walking a dog is a part of both yours and your dear pet’s routine and you cannot really compromise on it. Thus, wintertime dog walks prove to be challenging. Every dog owner at this time of the year is on high alert for their dog walking safety.

Walking your dog during the winter months can be quite the challenge. The most primary precaution you take is to have it all bundled up but once you step outside there are multiple challenges that you might face depending on the weather conditions. Precautions are to be taken to keep your pet safe and warm during winters.

Listed below are tips that will ensure that your dog stays warm and safe even in freezing cold weather.

 

Avoid Metal And Risk Of Being Electrocuted

It is easy to neglect this, but by doing so you are only risking the life of your beloved dog. Most people let this advice slip by thinking of it as not a major concern. Well avoid being one such dog owner and be a tad bit more attentive of how this could affect your furry buddy’s health. Be a little more analytical when it comes to your pet’s safety in cold weather. The potential dangers of uncovered electrical wires spread recklessly on streets and swallowing metal objects can land your dog into a serious health condition.

It is rather important because in urban areas, at times metal have corroded electrical wires hidden underneath and this increases the risk of being electrocuted. This is why it is critical to ensure that your puppy stays away from pieces of metal with old wires. The last thing you want is for the moisture from snow to result in your dog getting electrocuted. Dogs also have a habit of licking onto things, so they are more at risk of licking a cold metal object so just keep an eye out while out on a walk. Stay Away From Snowdrifts

Snowdrifts are something you should stay clear off, as they form rapidly and can cover anything. Snow can be covered over metal, sharp objects, pile of garbage or hazardous item and your dog can injure himself if he lands on such a heap covered with snow. Best option to avoid such unfortunate event is by sticking to walking at a safe distance. Stick to walking in wide open spaces at parks or around small yards that are safe and your pet can enjoy running freely through the snow.

 

Careful With Ice

If at all possible, schedule your daily walks in the day time rather than in the evening. Firstly, the day is much warmer as compared to the chilly winter evenings and secondly, the streets are more visible in sunlight so you can avoid tripping over metal.

Ice surface is extremely slippery for both humans and dogs, so be very careful when crossing an icy path. If you are used to jogging or running on a normal weather day, then we advise that you go slow. Do not let your dog run across as this will ensure that it does not slip and injure himself. To avoid the risk of tripping over slippery streets, stick to ploughed sidewalks and trails. The same rule applies for your safety, better stick to walking during such weather condition.

 

Snow Is Not The Snack That Your Dog Can Devour

As mentioned earlier, dogs have a habit to lick and sniff anything and everything. This means that they will not shy away from licking the snow and eat everything they feel is edible.

No doubts, they will be tempted to eat snow which seems quite harmless, but you know better and it is a terrible idea. Licking or eating snow is harmful considering the chemicals or harmful objects that may be hidden in it.

Dress For The Weather

Similar to your kid, a dog too would require sweaters and boots before stepping out in such freezing conditions. As per the standard dog care rule, consider a coat or a sweater for your pet to wear during winter walks.  Dog breeds such as Chihuahuas, Greyhounds, Whippets, Miniature Pinschers and similar dogs who do not have long fur coats or enough body heat to stay warm will need an extra layer to keep them warm.

Protect those delicate paws from the brutality of cold, snow, ice, salt, and more things that can wreak havoc on your dog’s feet during winters. Boots are a must in this weather but besides do not forget to add a layer of protection by slathering on some petroleum jelly. In case you are just using petroleum jell due to the weather being reasonably cold, then be sure to wipe your dog’s feet before you come back inside.

Most of the dog breeds have little to no fur in their feel, which makes it mandatory to wear dog boots for walks. Consider getting doggie boots, as these will help keep the paws warm and offer protection. Boots are of more help than you think as they protect the paws, give your four-legged buddy a better grip and prevent them from accidentally stepping on objects buried under the snow. Wearing boots and sweater are the most primary safety measure any dog owner must consider.

 

Groom Them Right For The Weather

Trim your dog’s nails for better traction; if you do not trim their nails, then it increases their chances of slipping and sliding around. These chances multiply when there’s ice on the ground. So, be proactive and help your dog stay upright by cutting their nails regularly.

It is also advisable to keep your dog’s coat reasonably thick just to protect them from the harsh weather. Use dog clippers carefully and avoid the risk of trimming their coat extremely short. Groom them well to avoid turning the walk into an unpleasant experience.

 

Be Attentive

Pay attention when going out in snow with your pet because there are pretty good chances that they can get catch a cold despite of all the layers covering them.

Even if the dog is wearing a coat or sweater and boots, you must still keep a close watch on them. Remember, they are your priority at that moment and you cannot afford to lose focus throughout the walk. Be aware of frostbites where the skin is cold, pale and hard; it often turns red and puffy after it warms a bit.

If your pup starts to shake or shiver, it is a sign that he is too cold and needs to go home.

 

 

As a dog owner, you ought to know your pet’s breed well. Few dog breeds would beg to stay out for more than a shorter period of time, but other breeds such as Doberman or other short-haired dogs will prefer short walks. Stick to checking the watch and give them enough time suitable for their requirement. Be mindful if it’s freezing outside. If it’s too cold to step out, choose to stay at home with some hot chocolate for yourself and treats for the little furry bundle!

 

Author Bio:

Anna Barton loves to spend quality time with her puppy Coco and has always been a dog enthusiast. In her free time she loves to take Coco for walks around the park and pen down her thoughts. The very fact that she is currently associated with Masterclip – a company providing pet grooming products- shows her best interests for pets. She loves engaging with other pet owners in the park and has a set exercise routine for Coco. Along with Coco by her side she is looking forward to share more experiences for other pet owners!

The kind expression of golden retriever depicts it all. It is one of the most beautiful family dogs. They are an American staple in a large number of houses. According to American Kennel Club survey, the golden retriever is the third most popular breed of dog, followed by German Shepherd and Labrador Retriever. The golden retriever is adaptable to any lifestyle they just need little affection and gesture of love like playing fetching games, and take it for a walk.

Friendly: Golden retriever has a very friendly nature even with strangers.  His bark is welcoming rather than being protective. Apart from individuals, it is very peaceful with other animals as well.

Easy Training: The general nature of golden retriever is enthusiastically like the puppy for a lot of years. Early obedience training is very important to inhibit calmness and good manners. It is very eager to please and responds to the training very well.

No Grooming: A golden retriever does not require constant grooming. Due to the thick coat and medium length, they do not require to be bathed on a daily basis and to be brushed two times a week.

Confident:  Although, confidence can be a hard trait to acquire for humans same is not the case with golden retrievers. Moreover, golden retrievers are famous for their frankness and easy to deal personalities, which entails their calm and confident temperament.

Love to please: It is innate nature of golden retrievers to please their human parents. Although it is rewarding, it entails that they are easier to train in comparison to other breeds. If you provide love, fuss and praise on any of their accomplishment.

Loyalty: Golden retrievers are amazingly loyal to their families and always ready to put them on most priority. There is nothing that a four-legged friend cannot do it for their partners.

Gentle: Although, the golden retriever is considered as big dog breed and they are full of enthusiasm, however, they are incredibly calm. These dogs are one of the breeds that are bred by choice to have temperament overlooks and most of the breed standards are inclusive of the notion that golden is sweet and gentle.

Author Bio

Wendy Shore is a parent of two amazing dogs. She is very enthusiastic about pet health and welfare in general. She regularly blogs at https://www.totallygoldens.com/.

If you have been traveling around many cities or across boundaries of your country, you must have found thousands of unloved, unhealthy, improperly-fed street dogs everywhere around you. If you don’t travel much, the shelter homes house a significant crowd of street dogs that are up for adoption. Remember the times when a dog followed you for long, how difficult it was to ignore a cute little puppy that asks for your time and attention.

So, if you have fallen in love with one of those street dogs or you are deciding to provide a home and a family to a street dog, there’re certain things you need to know before getting the legal things done for adoption.

  1. Aggressive Behavior:

A Common myth about stray/street dogs reveals that they have behavior issues besides a range of health issues. However, research has shown that adopting a street dog can lead to behavior changes in street dogs as they get food, care, love, and protection. The unloved dog spent months or years on streets, so it develops an instinctive protective as well as aggressive behavior. Once, they learn that their owners are there to protect them; they often shed their behaviors along with some training.

It’s advisable to adopt a puppy as its behavior can be easily molded despite the genetically inherited instinctive behavior. However, giving a home to an adult might make a difference in your life as well as the pet’s.

  1. Hyper-attachment:

A Turkish research survey, Integration Ability of Urban Free-Ranging Dogs into Adoptive Families’ Environment by Yasemin Salgiri Demirbas (Ankara University) et al, identified a commonly observed behavior in street dogs after adoption: hyper-attachment1. Hyper-attachment should not be mixed with separation anxiety as street dogs are used to living on their own during owner’s absence.

Hyper-attachment is an excessive attachment to the owner who rescued the dog and provided food and shelter to the dog. Moreover, the love and care are taken as priceless emotions by dogs without a replacement. They love to always be around the owner to gain most of their love, attention and appreciation. In return, they are more obedient, more loving and more friendly with everyone.

Consider the amount of time and attention you can give to your new pet-dog so that they do not get aggressive or escape the house later on.

  1. Freedom-Lover:

Street dogs are accustomed to roaming around freely without being chained. As a new pet-parent, you need to understand the dog’s habits before you want it to understand your needs. They know how to protect themselves in critical solutions so let them move around freely as long as they are not creating trouble for anyone.

Bring them home often to make them adapt to your environment. If the dog adapts to your family and friends, that’s a huge plus. Commonly, street dogs are more adaptive than purely-bred dogs.

  1. Shyness or Cowardice:

Puppies often display shy behavior as they have to leave behind their families or pack of dogs and live among humans. They take time to understand the new environment and new parents to move around freely and to explore the spaces.

Grown-up dogs displaying a cowardly behavior are associated with previous owners who abused or mistreated the dogs. They may show unwanted aggressive behaviors like nipping, biting and barking at smaller scale and are trainable. Some dogs initially freak out due to the noise of vacuum cleaner, hair dryer or blender machines as they had bad experiences in the past.

  1. Adaptability with Children:

Before adopting a street dog, be sure that the dog has adapted well to your children and other pets around the house. Street dogs had faced competitive environment and aggressive fights in past which has made them over-protective. The over-protective behavior of street dogs often leads them to a display of over-possessive behavior towards their owner and their belongings. Care needs to be taken at this step!

  1. Food Sharing With Other Dogs/Cats:

Due to competition and fights with other animals over scraps of food, street dogs often hate to share their food. Such attitude may trouble your other pets. However, there are exceptions when street dogs act more responsibly towards fellow pets and share their food and toys.

  1. Training Needs:

Street dogs are not difficult to train as long as they are the center of attention and get the most appreciation. They are obedient as they understand the fact that you are a source of changing their life conditions. Initially, you only need to train them without leashes and collars so they may not think of you as chaining them. Go slow in the process of training and keep it as much fun as possible so the dog may not fear you or escape at once.

  1. Health Issues:

Health issues are found commonly in street dogs. So, you need to take them to a vet for a complete analysis of fleas, ticks or heartworm presence and treatment. Vaccinations are essential for street dogs and puppies. Consult your vet and get a detailed checkup of street dog you are thinking to adopt.

But, the great news is that street dogs have a stronger immune system than purely-bred dogs. They are more prone to common diseases.

Hopefully, after taking into consideration these things, you will be left with nothing else to worry about! Less struggle, more peace, and more fun are what comes with a street dog commonly. The best part of all is that you can bring a change in someone’s life and provide a family to a homeless and unloved street dog.

References:

1https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1558787814000604

 

 

Fiona Appleton is a Labrador owner. She is the manager of https://ultimatehomelife.com/ that has been developed to help people solve the troubles of pet ownership. She is an active advocate of animal protection campaigns. She wants people to understand that dog-behavior is reflective of our behavior.

Now that winter is in full swing, you need to make some useful adjustments in the food-habit of your dog. There is an important connection between weather and appetite in the dogs and the changes in the weather play a vital role in altering their food intake. The seasonal change significantly impacts the health of a dog, that’s why you need to pay extra attention to the diet of your barker throughout these chilly months.

But winter not only comes with snow and sleet, it also comes with loads of misconception and mistaken beliefs among the dog owners such as:

 

  • Many pet parents think that because their pets have a coat of fur, they can easily deal with the cold better than humans and don’t require any extra attention especially to its dietary needs

 

  • Dogs are biologically capable of adjusting with the seasonal changes on their own

 

  • Some believe that extra calories will be required in the winter to keep their body temperature regulated

 

  • And there are some pet owners who believe that there is no need for extra calories as dogs do not burn them as often as they do in summer

 

Through this article, I will try to help you get rid of the common misconceptions regarding the food-habit of the dog and focus on how you can streamline the diet of your pet during the cold season.

 

(A) SELECT THE FOOD BASED ON THEIR BREED, AGE & SIZE

The selection of the food should be solely based on the breed, age and size of your dog. Large breed dogs like Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Dalmatians and others tend to suffer from bone related issues during winter. You need to add calcium enriched foods in their diet during winter. You could give them commercial dog foods include meats, grains, vegetables, and fruits. For large breed puppies, you can opt for natural dairy products such as milk and cheese. Large breed dogs can gain excessive weight quite rapidly during winter. Take particular care that you are not over-feeding them. Take them out for regular exercise as it will ease arthritis pain brought on by cold conditions. Keep in mind that, apart from exceptional cases, larger breed canines do not require extra calories in winter.

 

Foods for large breed dogs in winter:

 

  • Bones
  • Vegetables & Legumes Such as Broccoli, Spinach, & Beans
  • Tuna Fish & Fish Oil
  • Milk & Eggs
  • Kidney Beans
  • Calcium Supplements

 

Chihuahua, Poodle, Beagle, Pomeranian and other smaller breed dogs are different in many ways from their larger counterparts. In spite of their tiny size, their metabolic rates become higher during cold months and they require more calories. Appropriate winter diet can help to relieve dry and flaky skin of smaller dogs.

 

Foods for small breed dogs in winter:

 

  • Chicken Meat
  • Buffalo Meat
  • Salmon
  • Brown Rice
  • Egg
  • Whole-Wheat Bread
  • Cheese And Milk

 

Age and size are other important factors while deciding the menu for your dog. For relatively old dogs, irrespective of large or small size, it is suggested to offer them branded dog food as they often find it hard to digest cooked or natural foods. Indigestion is a common problem for the senior dogs during winter. So be very careful about what he is eating at this season and you can also ask for recommendations from your veterinarian. For younger canines, it will be good if you can offer them freshly cooked and hot meals in winter. It will keep them energetic and they can digest it rather quickly.

 

(B) FOOD ITEMS YOU SHOULD NOT OFFER TO YOUR DOG DURING WINTER-

Knowing the food items you should not offer to your furry-friend during cold season is as important as knowing the items you should offer. There are so many food products that experts suggest not to provide to your dog. You should also stop others from giving your dog the following food items during winter:

 

  • Salt and Salty Snack Foods
  • Undercooked & Stale Foods
  • Chocolate, Coffee and Caffeine
  • Candy, Gum & Carbonated Drinks
  • Sugary Food, Ice-Cream & Chips
  • Foods that contain xylitol

 

(C) KEEP YOUR DOG REHYDRATED-

Same as in case of human beings, water intake by dogs gets reduced during cold months. Insufficient water consumption could lead to different types of health complications. Keep the water bowl of your canine full all the time and lovingly encourage him to drink water. There are few things you can do to persuade your dog to drink water:

 

  • Add water to your dog’s food
  • Keep several bowls of water in the different places of the house
  • Make the water easily accessible and maintain its temperature
  • Give him a treat every time he finishes a bowl

 

(D) MAKE YOUR DOG EXERCISE IN WINTER-

It becomes quite difficult to make your dog exercise during winter because of the harsh weather conditions outside. You simply can’t afford to let your dog lie lazily on the couch as it may aggravate excessive weight gain, obesity, digestive problems, appetite loss and arthritis. But regular exercise is important for your canine in order to keep him healthy, fit and well-behaved. Workout also helps proper digestion. When uninviting winter months prevent you from taking your dog outside, here are few ways you can follow to make him exercise inside the house:

 

  • Indulge in indoor games-

Getting involved in the indoor games is perhaps the most convenient and easy way to keep your canine energetic and fit during cold months.

  • Play fetch and retrieve-

Play fetch using a long hallway or open basement. Start the game by throwing his favorite toy and race with him to get it. Your engagement will motivate him more.

  • Hide & Seek-

Hide his meal in a box and let him discover it on his own. It will help him to burn extra calories and reduce the fear of getting overweight.

  • Treadmill training-

Get him on the treadmill. While he is on the treadmill, slowly increase the speed in order to make it more challenging. This will really give him a good workout inside the house.

Winter is not the best season to workout your canine outdoors. But all these indoor exercises will help your dog to remain immensely fit as they significantly improve blood circulation, help to produce more efficient bowel movements and offer much-needed mental simulation.

 

Final Thoughts

Accurate meal-plan is essential to ensure your puppy gets the finest nutrition possible in the trying cold season. You should select food items according to the health conditions of your barker. If your dog is going through some sort of treatment or suffering from a particular disease, make sure you are seeking proper advice from your veterinarian before planning his diet. Stay away from switching his food abruptly as it may lead to diarrhea or vomiting. It is better to gradually introduce him with the new diet.

 

Author Bio: Sabby Brown is an online blogger and an avid pet lover. She likes to write on various topics related to pets especially dogs and is a regular contributor to the blog section of Apex Pet Gear.

Dogs are increasingly being considered family members or even faux children. As a result, many people today spare no expense when it comes to treating their pooches with the luxuries of modern life. From upscale dining to lavish hotel stays, dog owners are invested in seeking the best care for their pooches. Yet, it’s important to note grooming supplies are more significant than an extravagant dog house when trying to provide the best for your pet.

Dog grooming supplies are essential for keeping up with your dog’s health. Physical maintenance, which includes care of coat and nails, is one of your furry companion’s basic needs. When making purchases for for your dog, grooming equipment should be at the top of your list. Here are some basic grooming supplies every dog owner should have.

Dog Brush

Slicker brushes, wire pin brushes and bristle brushes are just some of the countless dog brushes available. The basis of having such a wide variety of tools on the market corresponds with the vastly different hair types dogs can have.

While it’s best to choose a brush tailored to your dog’s coat, a slicker brush is good all-purpose tool. On the other hand, if you own a short haired breed or a dog with a long coat, you may want to invest in more specialized equipment in order to provide the best care for your pup.

Combs

Dog brushes and combs are commonly considered one in the same as far as grooming supplies go. However, even through the motions are similar, brushes and combs are used for different purposes. Dog brushes are are useful for removing excess hair and making your dog’s coat healthy and shiny. Alternatively, dog combs are beneficial for untangling any knots which may have formed over time.

A medium-toothed comb is a decent all-around tool. Nonetheless, fine-toothed combs are best for dogs with thinner hair, while wider-toothed combs work better on thicker coats. A flea comb is also a necessity for both detecting and removing fleas.

Clippers

Clippers are another instrument for maintaining your dog’s hair. Unlike brushes and combs, it’s curried over the coat to remove any excess dirt or residual fur which often goes undetected. Clippers also allow you to cut your dog’s hair at home, saving you a substantial amount of money in the long run.

The average price of grooming over a dog’s lifetime spans up to $14,000. Fortunately, Frank Rowe & Son Inc. offers great deals on an extensive selection of corded, cordless and Li+ battery pet clippers. If you’re on the market for a trusted and reliable clipper, you should look into the top rated brands of 2017, which includes Andis, Oster and Wahl dog.

Ear and Teeth Cleansers

Grooming is more than just bathing and brushing. It also consists of cleaning the teeth and ears. Dog dental care products, like toothbrushes and toothpaste are developed especially for pets’ teeth. Purchasing a toothbrush and toothpaste made for dogs is a worthy investment for maintaining your dog’s teeth and gums health over time.

Cleaning your dog’s ears is also an important part of grooming needs. Unlike the horizontal ear canals of humans, our dogs’ are more “L-Shaped” which makes them more prone to ear problems.  An in-depth dog ear wash is synonymous with proper dog grooming guidelines and should take place on a weekly basis. Otic solution, forceps and gauze are the recommended tools to properly clean your dog’s ears.

While it may seem like grooming is a needless expense, it’s essential for every pooch. Grooming keeps dogs clean and comfortable, while warding off possible health complications in the future.

Dog grooming is not only indispensable to your dog’s health and happiness, but also the owners. By following a routine grooming schedule, you will tighten the bond with your pet, which will in turn eliminate their natural instinct to resist. Therefore, do a proper job by obtaining the basic equipment and performing regular grooming sessions.

 

Bio:

Emily is an avid animal lover and pet and wildlife conservation blogger. She has also written for Continental Kennel Club and is a contributor to PetsBlogs. To read more of her articles, check out her blog, Conservation Folks, or follow her on Twitter.

I love Flat-Coated Retrievers, and I think it’s one of the best breeds you could own.

Why? Well, if you haven’t met one, let me explain. But first some background and a description of the breed.

Background

The Flat-Coated Retriever breed is about 150 year old.

It was developed in Great Britain as a dual-purpose retriever, meaning it should be able to fetch both on land and in water.

Four breeds were used: Setter, Collie, Newfoundland, and the now extinct St. John’s water dog.

It was a successful mix that gave the Flat-Coat some of its hallmarks: Great scenting ability (from the Setter), trainability (Collie), strength (Newfoundland), and love of water (St. John’s water dog).

Flat-Coated Retrievers are currently moderately popular in Europe, mainly in Britain and Scandinavia, but not as much in the rest of the world.

In USA, it’s only the 89th most popular dog breed.

Description

With a height of 22”-24”, and a weight of 55-75 lb, the Flat-Coat is a fairly large dog. Males are at the upper half, while females are at the lower end of that range.

The life span is relatively short, 8-10 years, although some dogs can live for 14 years or even more.

Black and liver are the two colors accepted by the breed standard (see image below). However, in rare cases, yellow Flat-Coats are born. These dogs are not allowed for breeding, but are equally nice dogs.

Most individuals can be described by these characteristics:

 

  • Young at heart.
  • Loves people.
  • Wagging tail.
  • Happy
  • Positive
  • Playful
  • High-energy.
  • Likes to carry things in his mouth.

 

The Flat-Coated Retriever is a relatively healthy breed except for a high rate of cancer. Malignant histiocytosis is the most common form, even though it’s rare among most other breeds.

 

Stimulating Activities

Because Flat-Coats are high-energy dogs, they need exercise and mental stimulation on a daily basis. Suitable activities include swimming, fetching, and tracking scents.

Obedience training is necessary to control its playfulness and high level of energy. I would recommend that you start slowly from 4 months of age. Keep it fun, and don’t be harsh, because Flat-Coats are quite sensitive dogs.

 

Obedience training is also a great way to drain some of all that energy.

 

By providing the dog with these types of stimulating activities, negative behavior will not be an issue.

 

But if the dog is left alone for hours without sufficient exercise, things like chewing, mouthing and jumping could become a problem.

Should You Get a Flat-Coated Retriever?

Now, I want to make it clear that Flat-Coated Retrievers are not for everyone. In my opinion, you need to have three things in order to be appropriate:

 

  1. Patience – to cope with its high-energy puppy-like behavior (which I love).
  2. Active lifestyle – to fulfill the dog’s need for exercise and stimulation.
  3. Time for your dog – because it doesn’t like to be left alone for any longer periods of time.

 

If you also are prepared to work with your dog, you will get a wonderful (and fun!) companion that will lift your spirit whenever you feel down.

 

Happy and optimistic, constantly wagging its tail, the Flat-Coated Retriever is always ready for another adventure or fun activity.

 

It should be mentioned that since Flat-Coats love all people, it’s not a very good guard dog. In fact, from personal experience, I would say that it’s a pretty lousy guard dog, because an intruder would likely be welcomed by a happy dog licking his face!

 

If you are interested, contact a reputable breeder, and visit him or her for a hands-on experience with this amazing breed. But I must warn you. You will probably fall in love, and not want to get any other breed!

Author Bio

John Solvik is a pet-loving blogger with a special affection to Flat-Coated Retrievers.

 

You can read his latest posts over at his blog: PetAnimalGuide.com.

A man’s best friend deserves more than just the four corners of the backyard. Your pup most likely wants to explore the four corners of the world! The ambition is there, but let’s just start with a nice road trip. Instinctually, most people will just have their dog hop into the car and go, but there really is much more to it than that. Taking care of your dog and your health are of the utmost importance here. Trust me, if the dog starts getting upset, you will regret it. Not to mention the distractions that are unnecessary while you are driving. Here are some great tips to ensure you have a safe, healthy, and fun road trip with your pup.

Reach out to your vet

You will want to reach out to your vet, especially if you are going for a long trip. Most illnesses can be unseen to the average dog owner. Reaching out will ease your mind and keep your beloved dog safe while driving. Another good reason to check up with the vet is to see what he might say in terms of health concerns when traveling. He could be your best line of defense to preventing illness, ticks, or other problems that can occur.

Acquire a dog crate will prove to be useful

A dog crate will prove to be useful in stressful situations. Nobody likes putting their little pal into that jam-packed space, but it will greatly increase safety. For example, driving through a stressful city can be daunting on its own. The odds of an accident will greatly increase if your dog is free-roaming the car while you navigate. Therefore, one should pull over before the city and get the dog in the safe crate. This will help you immensely and you can just let your dog out when you are done.

Get the weather report before you drive

Nothing is worse than driving with your dog and having to embrace a bad storm. This could really cause your dog to freak out. Which means you will have to keep it in the crate for hours on end. Before you head on your road trip, watch the weather channel or check google to see the weather report for the days that follow. Hopefully, it will be all sunshine and clear skies.

Have enough space in your vehicle

If you do not have a good-sized vehicle, it is going to feel like you and your dog are both in a crate. This will put a serious damper on your road trip. The highest recommended type of vehicle for space and luxury is a Crossover SUV. This is the perfect compromise between style and space that every dog lover admires. This will allow your dog to roam free without either one of you feeling cramped. Not to mention how great it is to have space for the dog crate and your luggage.

Last minute bathroom plan

You never know when the bowels are going to start moving. This could be difficult if you are driving 70 miles an hour down the highway. Make sure you have your doggy bags to pick up after your dog and a good plan to dispose of it when you need to. This is respectful to others and something that is, unfortunately, easily forgotten by some dog owners. Hopefully, you can train your dog to notify you when the time is near to pull over.

Update the ID tag

This is very important. You never know what can happen out on the road. One minute you could be taking your dog for a walk, then the next minute your dog is gone chasing after a rabbit. Therefore, you want to update the ID tag. That way, if someone finds your pup, they can easily call you. If your dog doesn’t have an ID tag and animal control comes across them, they will consider it a stray and put the dog in the pound. That is never a good situation, especially on a road trip.

Another great option is to consider getting a GPS tracker for your pup. This will help keep your anxiety attack under control if the worst-case scenario happens.

Plan your Trip

Planning the trip is always a good idea. Try to find good spots along your route to walk your dog. You can even seek out a dog park, so your dog can make some friends. This will be good because you and your dog will get some exercise as opposed to sitting in the same spot for hours. Keep that blood moving to stay healthy.

Make sure to find the cautious areas too. Knowing where not to go could keep you and your buddy out of danger.

Now it is time to hit the road! You will have a safer and healthier trip with your dog. It will definitely be a fun and unforgettable experience now that you are prepared. Have a safe drive!