dog facts

Dog Toys for the Brain, Teeth and Feet

Nov-2013-iStock_000014546418XSmallThinking of the best toys that suit your dog? Below are some suggestions:

1. Kong Jump’n Jack:  Kong Jump’n Jack is a dog toy and a teeth cleaner and gum exerciser at the same time. It has a very unpredictable bounce that makes it a lot more fun for the dog to play with. It has surfaces that clean your dog’s teeth. Kong Jump’n Jack also has slits that are useful for the gums to be exercised.

2. Squirrel Dude (Busy Buddy):  This is a unique and innovative rubber toy. It has four rubber prongs that slightly cover the hole, which challenges the dog to give more effort to taste the food treats inside. The Squirrel Dude is durable and very chewable.

3. Biscuit Block (Animal Planet):  This chew toy has four grabbing chambers distributed throughout the toy. Varieties of dog treats can be inserted inside to keep pets happy and busy. It has a crazy bounce brought about by its square shape with cut corners.

4. Ball Stomp’r (Launch and Throw Ball Toys): This dog toy enables both young and old to have a great time playing with their dogs. The Ball Stomp’r is the first ball launcher of its kind. The ball needs to be loaded, then stomped on and it will eject to a height reaching 100 feet with the regular ball.

5. Dinosaur Egg Baby (Plush Puppies) – Intelligence Building Toy.  The Dinosaur Egg Baby has three eggs inside that make a squeaking sound. It has a secret opening underneath to test your dog’s instinct in getting hidden rewards. It is 6 inches in height, 5 inches wide and 12 inches long.

These are all toys that exercise dogs, cleanse their teeth, rejuvenate their jumping ability and test their intelligence.

A Dog’s Golden Years

header-objectWith appropriate care most dogs live complete and happy lives.  Unfortunately, an adored pet never seems to live long enough.  Each breed has different life spans.  While taking care of your aging dog you need to adapt his environment for his comfort.  As dogs get older, they develop aches, joint pain, generalized weakness and an almost definite increase in medical problems.

Adjust his surroundings to minimize discomfort.  Protect him from excessive heat and cold.  Older dogs are unable to regulate body temperature as a younger dog does.

Try to give your dog regular exercise.  Make sure your dog’s health matches his exercise routine.  If your dog exhibits signs of heavy panting or opposes exercise you need to change his routine.

Adapt his diet and feeding schedule to his needs.  As dogs age they are less active and need fewer calories.  Prescription diets are available.  Discuss special diets with your veterinarian.

Older dogs can experience hearing loss and declining eyesight.  Accommodate for his safety.

Senior dogs require special dental care.  They are more likely to develop gum problems and disease.  Complete dental cleaning should be performed by your vet.  This does require anesthesia.  Make sure complete blood work is performed.

Older dogs need extra bathing and grooming.  Dry skin can be a normal part of aging or it can be a sign of an underlying medical condition.  They also require more frequent nail trimming.

Take into consideration his age in human years.  If he is 13 in dog years, he may suffer the same aging ailments as a 75 year old human.

Continue with bi-annual vet exams.  Senior dogs need extra care with their aging problems.

Give his life quality!  Keep those memories alive!

Seven Tips on Choosing a Name For Your Puppy

dog-namesYou’ve picked out the perfect puppy.  Now what? He needs a name!  Over the course of its life, you will use your dog’s name more than 35,000 times. Be sure you’re picking a name you can live with and love. With these seven tips, the key to finding the perfect name for your puppy is at your fingertips!

  1. Dogs understand short commands. Easy names with two or fewer syllables work well.
  2. Your puppy’s name shouldn’t sound like any commands. “Stacy” and “stay” are too close for comfort. Such a name may confuse your puppy.
  3. Remember, you’ll be using your pup’s name in public. “Stinky” may be cute among your fellow fraternity members, but it won’t go over well at the veterinarians.
  4. Make your kids part of the decision.
  5. You may think it’s an honor to name your pup after your favorite Uncle Norbert. Naming your baby after him may keep you in the will, but naming your puppy after him may not.
  6. If you’re bringing home an older dog, ideally, stick with the name it already has. Can’t stand it because “Barney” was the first boy who broke your heart? Then stick with similar sounds when choosing a new name. “Barney” morphs into “Farley” easily.
  7. Once you’ve chosen a name, try it out for a day or so. You’ll know right away whether it’s a keeper. If not, there are always more puppy names on your list!

Take a look around you. Everywhere you are, you’ll find a variety of terrific ideas on what to name your pooch.  At first glance, a couple things will stand out about your new puppy. Enjoy him or her for a day or two and take these into consideration.

The choices are endless. However, with these simple tips and some thought, before long you’ll have found the perfect puppy name!

 

 

All Dog Foods are Not the Same

123RF-9099369_sYour dog’s health and wellbeing is important to you and your family. Carefully consider the food that you give your dog. It is important to pick the right one.

To keep your dog healthy he needs plenty of fresh water and should be fed good quality dog food in the right amount to meet his energy requirements. Always follow the guidelines on the dog food package for recommended feeding amounts.

Major dog food companies try to provide balanced proportions of vitamins and minerals for maximum benefit to your dog. Although you may see that many brands of dog food have almost identical labels, a reputable dog food company will provide an explanation for each supplement and how it benefits your dog.

Always read the label to see what proteins, vitamins and minerals are being provided to your dog. Try not to use store brand dog food as this may short change your dog on much needed nutrition.

There are many varieties of dog food to choose from. The three most popular types of dog foods are dry, semi-moist and canned products. Check the color of your dog food. Usually dog food made from natural ingredients will have soft earth tones and contain no preservatives, artificial colors and flavors.

Choose a good premium dog food since it contains more energy and protein than an economy brand. Unfortunately not all dog food brands contain high quality and natural ingredients, so always check the label. It is best if you seek advice from your veterinarian before deciding on which dog food to feed your dog or puppy. He will know your dog’s dietary needs and you will find that veterinary offices and feed stores often carry excellent and natural dog food.

Overall it’s usually best to let dogs enjoy dog food and not our food, even though they may prefer what we’re eating! Of course you can feed your dog treats from time to time.

“Can I Have A Puppy?”

123RF-17245805_sSooner or later, every parent is likely to hear: “Please, can I have a puppy?”

Rather than dodge the question, parents should consider whether their family is ready for a pet, says Sharon Bergen, senior vice president of education and training for Knowledge Learning Corporation, the nation’s leading provider of early childhood care and education.

Bergen suggests that parents weigh the pros and cons of adding a pet to the household before agreeing to a child’s request. “A pet can teach children responsibility and become a wonderful addition to a family – or it can be a burden,” she says. Bergen recommends families consider the following before making a decision.

Who will care for the pet? Families should agree beforehand who will be responsible for feeding, walking, bathing and cleaning up after the pet.

Do you have space for a pet? Families living in apartments or townhouses may prefer a cat, a bird or fish, rather than a Labrador Retriever. Check the library or Internet to learn more about different types and breeds of pets to determine the one most suitable for your family.

Owning a pet is time-consuming and may be expensive. Family members should realize that they may have to give up other activities to properly care for a pet. If the prospect seems too daunting, parents should consider waiting until the child is old enough to help care for an animal.

Bergen recommends the whole family meet the animal before deciding to take it home. Owning a pet is a life-long commitment, so think carefully before adding a pet to your family.

 

Five Steps to a Better-Behaved Pet

Nov-2013-iStock_000014546418XSmallWant to live a healthier lifestyle? Get a dog!  Studies show that pet ownership helps reduce stress, lowers blood pressure and fends off feelings of loneliness and depression.

While nothing can top the love and companionship of a dog, there are some unpleasant behaviors that just won’t do – from barking all night to having an accident on the floor to chewing on your shoes.

If your dog is exhibiting these behaviors, it may be acting out due to boredom, pent-up aggression or because of a lack of training. With proper lifestyle adjustments and diligent training, you’ll be on your way to having a happy, well-behaved pet. The following tips will help your furry friend become more obedient:

1) Spay or neuter. The Humane Society of the United States says that this common procedure can help your dog live longer, be healthier and have fewer behavior problems.

2) Help your pet relax. Just like people, dogs can get anxious, agitated and stressed.

3) Have a workout routine. Provide your dog companion with regularly scheduled walks each day. This will help your dog avoid boredom, which can lead to destructive behavior.

4) Go to school.  Enrolling your dog in an obedience class will teach you how to control your dog’s behavior both safely and humanely.

5) Be patient. Though teaching your furry friend to be more obedient may take determination on your part, it’s worth it. Your dog will appreciate bonding with you during the process.

 

 

Do Pet Stain Removers Work or are You Being Taken to the Cleaners?

iStock-August 08, 2010Pet stains on carpet and other types of flooring can be difficult to remove.  Pet stain removal products sometimes work and sometimes they don’t.  It depends on the surface that you’re cleaning and how extensive the damage is.

There are two different types of pet stain removers, volatile chemicals (chemicals that react with certain compounds) and enzyme products.  Chemical products work by changing the chemical make-up of urine.  However, if you’re using a chemical on your flooring or carpet chances are you’re not going to get all the chemical out.  These chemicals can remain in the dye pores and fibers of your carpets for many years.  Enzymes work by acting as a catalyst to remove urine.  Enzymes are natural, unlike man-made chemicals.

For infrequent pet stains or pet accidents, pet stain removers can work extremely well.  These products neutralize and eliminate pet stains on carpet surfaces or already sealed flooring.

How to Know if Your Dog is Sick

-k9-kear-up-guaranteeMost dog owners will notice any sudden or odd changes in their dog’s normal behaviour but it is helpful to know which specific symptoms to look for. If your dog shows symptoms of excessive drinking, sudden loss of appetite, continual vomiting or diarrhoea, or unusual lethargy you should be concerned.  Discharge from the eyes or inflamed eyes, a shallow or rapid breathing pattern or persistent coughing can all be signs of something serious.

Typically when a dog is sick they will show a raised temperature, indicated by a hot, dry nose. If your dog has a high temperature or a very low temperature you should seek professional advice from your veterinarian.

A dog’s temperature will be raised after strenuous activity or excitement, and not be a reliable indication to its health at that time.

If you know or suspect your dog is ill, make sure you keep them calm and display a reassuring manner until you get them to the veterinarian. Dogs can be very sensitive to your tone of voice and will pick up any worry or anxiety in your demeanour.

Understanding your dog’s needs and keeping an eye out for symptoms of sickness and ill health ensures that you can take swift action and have your dog is cared for immediately.

Animal Lovers are Never Lonely

123RF-22885766_sHaving a dog or cat around the house brings animal lovers a lot of smiles. Cuddling, big round eyes sending messages of love, cute fluffy ears or a tail moving in signs of joy makes any heart melt. Animal lovers know that and they appreciate every smile a pet brings to their faces.

Animal lovers are never lonely, are always loved by their pets, and often receive the comfort that a human could not give them. Having an animal for a friend is having a true friend for life!

Another reason that animal lovers are never lonely is they are often communicative, generous, not selfish, always around to help their friends in need, loving and attentive. Animal lovers are very appreciated and loved by everyone.

If you are looking for company, animal and human, don’t forget animal lovers and their pets!

Five Great Gift Ideas for Pet Lovers

123RF-9880980_sWith the holidays just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking of gifts to give your friends and loved ones. Finding unique gifts can present a challenge, and most people never consider giving pet-related gifts. Since the chances are good that more than one person on your holiday gift list has a pet that he or she adores, why not give a distinctive gift that they will treasure? Here are five great gift ideas to get you started:

1. Fine Art Animal Prints

Dogs may come in many shapes and sizes, but each has a personality all of its own. One of the most delightful gifts you can give to a pet lover is a fine art print of his or her breed.

2. Crystal Animal Statues

Whether your gift recipient has a dog, cat, horse, or rabbit, he or she is sure to enjoy an elegant crystal animal statue. Hand-finished animal statues are beautiful yet whimsical. Crystal animal statues can depict a wide variety of pets.

3. Stone Animal Statues

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

4. Animal Posters

If you’ve ever owned a pet, you know how funny they can be. Animal posters depict pets in a variety of outlandish situations (remember the cat in “Hang in There”?), and are affordable.

5. Entertainment

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

It’s both original and thoughtful to give a gift that acknowledges someone’s pet as a central part of his or her life. Pet lovers will appreciate and treasure your thoughtful gift.