Aug 31, 2010

Here is a reference site of 50 Animal references you may wish to use as a reference

50 Animal References - Schools, Blogs Training Courses, Novels Etc

Sound Corny? Keep a Doggy Scrapbook. Later You'll Wish You Had...

Office ProductsImage via Wikipedia
A dog journal is a great place to collect memories and photographs of your dog. Amusing stories and silly pictures will remind you why you love your dog when he’s trying your patience, and can be a comfort when you’re feeling low.


Your memory book can contain written passages, photo collages, interesting one-liner recollections, or even memorabilia that you collect while traveling with your dog. If you can draw, bring out the colored pencils and put in some sketches. Paste in mementoes of your travels together, such as train tickets or camping passes. Use your imagination to record not just the special times, but the everyday, too.

Journals come in a wide variety of styles and forms. Craft stores have fancy scrapbooks with large, removable pages. Bookstores, art supply stores, and office supply stores have dozens of blank books to choose from in a range of sizes, some with lined paper and others with plain paper. If you want to make entries every day, you might even consider a daybook calendar, which has dated a page or spread devoted to each day. Even a simple spiral notebook will do.

Creatively decorate the pages if you wish. Craft and scrapbooking stores have a huge selection of decorations: decorative papers, stickers, rub-on transfers, stamps, three-dimensional embellishments. Use colored pencils, markers, paints—whatever strikes your fancy. There are no rules. Check out books on “art journals” for inspiration.





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How Can I make It Easy For My Dog to Take a Pill?( AND CATS TOO)

Peanut butter is a semi-solid and can therefor...Image via Wikipedia
When your dog is sick and needs medication, it can be as distressing for you as it is for him. Once your vet has prescribed pills for your dog, now what?

Giving medicine does not require shoving the medication down his throat. A puppy can be trained to take medication using positive reinforcement and making him feel he will be rewarded. Remember, using a patient, calm tone of voice helps convey that message. We are trying to help our dogs, not scare them.

With older dogs or dogs that resist taking medication, sometimes we must get creative. Offering a pill hidden inside a treat is the easiest approach. You can purchase commercial pouch-shaped treats with tempting flavors at your vet’s office or any pet store—just pop the pill into the pocket and give Fido the treat. It’s just as easy to make your own with something your dog absolutely loves (such as folded liverwurst patties) It may be peanut butter, hotdogs, cheese spread—anything you know your dog is going to eat. But watch out! Dogs are pranksters and may eat the entire treat then spit out the pill when you have left the room. If necessary, crush the pill and blend it into something soft, like peanut butter or a small amount of canned dog food he likes.
Your last resort is to give the pill manually. Talking calmly at all times, gently open the dog’s mouth and place the pill as far back into your dog’s throat as you can. Close the dog’s mouth and gently hold his mouth closed while you stroke his throat until he swallows. Once they swallow the pill, give them a ton of affection and a yummy treat so they remember the positive reinforcement and not the unpleasantness of having to take medicine. This is an art, so please do not get discouraged if it does not work the first few times.

Never give your dog acetominophen, ibuprofen, aspirin, or any other “people” medication without your vet’s consent.

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Are They Playing or Fighting?

Dogs in Grange Park, Toronto, Canada.Image via Wikipedia
Playtime among dogs can look like a competitive match. Whether you take your pet to a dog park or arrange play dates with neighbors’ and friends’ dogs in a safe, fenced-in area, you should learn what healthy play looks like. Normal dog play can look rough and tough—you may hear some yipping (but not yelping) and a bit of growling (sing-song growls, not low nasty snarls). That’s the sound of happy dogs interacting and taking turns talking back to one another. Monitor sounds, and if you notice urgency or aggression in dogs’ voices, run interference. Leash both dogs and stop the play session.


Pay attention to dogs’ body posture. They will take turns being the “alpha” on top; they will alternate chasing. A submissive dog will introduce himself by laying on its side or crouching so the other dog can sniff and “meet” him. The shy dog should come out of his shell if play is healthy, acting as an equal participant in the jumping and chasing.

It is healthy for dogs to play in a sort of dancing pose, standing on hind legs in an embrace, where one dog is the lead. As long as they take turns being the lead, or alpha, the couple can dance all they want!

Monitor dog play, especially when your dog is meeting a new friend. Here are some danger signs to watch:

• Ganging behavior – watch that dogs play fair and don’t pick on one participant

• Unequal matches – size isn’t everything; some big dogs are intimidated by small, feisty characters

• Over-Domination – one dog is clearly in charge and aggressive, not allowing the other to chase back or take a turn being on top during some playful wrestling



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Barking is Their Language and If You Listen -- You Can Understand It

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 02:  Guide dog p...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Dogs have several kinds of barks. If you get attuned to the different barks you may hear, you will be able to understand your dog better and be better able to deal with the problem. As a friend has told me many times, “Dogs aren’t dumb animals, they just vocalize differently than we do.”

• The warning bark is deep and loud: “Hey, Mom—look out!”

• The middle-pitched, not too loud and not too strong bark is saying “Hey, please come get me. I want to go out.”

• The short bark that is almost a whine means “Hey, I have to relieve myself right now!”

• The happy bark is excited: “Come play with me—let’s go to the park!”

• The anger bark: “Hey, look at that squirrel! I must go get it!”

• The loud bark but it comes in short waves to say “Hey, it’s dinner time now!”

• The play bark that means your participation is needed: “Hey, I can’t reach that ball—I need help please.”

• The growl is a kind of warning bark: “Leave me alone!”

• The whining and crying bark is to get your attention: “Hey, look at me! Look at me! Look at me!”

• The yelp means “Run fast! I’m hurt, or stuck!”
  • Don’t reward your puppy’s whining, attention-seeking barking, or she may never grow out of it. You don’t want to teach her that she’ll be rewarded with affection or a treat if she whines.

Crates and Pens Can Feel Like Safe Places and also be a Sanity Saver for You

Gates, crates, and playpens can be sanity savers while you’re training your puppy or protecting off-limits rooms from becoming doggy dens. Any dog, puppy or adult, wants to explore. Because you can’t keep an eye on your dog every minute, you should create boundaries by putting up barriers that keep him in dog-approved space. Puppies require even more restrictions. You may decide to limit your puppy’s roaming to just the kitchen (easy-clean floor). Decide in advance where your puppy or dog is allowed in the house. If he gets a taste of that off-limits room just once, you can bet he’ll work hard to re-enter.


A crate is a safe retreat for your dog and should be sized to fit your dog so she has room to stand up and turn around in it. You can downsize a larger crate by blocking off the back. Have a sheet of sturdy plastic cut to fit at a hardware store and sand the edges. As your puppy grows, you can move the plastic farther and farther back in the crate until she doesn’t need the divider anymore.
Gates are an easy way to confine your dog to certain rooms if you don’t want to have a house full of closed doors. Gates allow you to keep an eye on your dog when you’re in another room. They come in different styles, both temporary and permanent. They are readily available at larger department and discount stores and are easy to install.

Playpens can be a great solution if you don’t want to deal with gates. Just be sure the pen is large enough for your puppy to play freely. Many playpens can be used outside, too, and they’re nice to have if you travel. Playpens shouldn’t be used as full-time babysitters, though. Your puppy needs to have some freedom so she can learn what she needs to learn in order to someday have full run of the house.



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BUY PET HEALTH INSURANCE

Dog ownership can get expensive if you splurge on the latest toys and do not invest in your dog’s health. Consider these spend-thrift measures to cut the cost of dog ownership without compromising your dog’s wellness or happiness.


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• Start your dog early on an exercise program, and try not to overfeed them. Health, exercise, and diet go hand in hand, and and a healthy dog will be less expensive to take care of.

• If you’re not attached to your vet, shop around. Prices can vary widely from one office to another. Ask your friends and neighbors for recommendations. But don’t choose a vet on price alone; the right vet will save you money in the long run. (See choosing a vet, day xx).

• Having your pet spayed or neutered is not only ethically the right thing to do, but can save money. Dogs who have been fixed are at less risk for many cancers, and don’t produce puppies that come with expenses of their own. Many humane organizations offer low-cost spaying and neutering—and low-cost vaccinations.

• Never be afraid to ask for discounts: some vets offer multiple-pet discounts as well as discounts for seniors.

• Ask your vet for a prescription for any medications as opposed to buying the medication directly from her. Most people don’t realize that 75% of the drugs that vets use are approved for people and can be purchased for much less in generic form at your local pharmacy. However, never give any medication to your pet without checking with your vet first.

• If your pet is ill and your vet is unable to arrive at a diagnosis, get a second opinion. This may cost more up front, but can save hundreds or thousands of dollars in the long run if the second vet can indentify the problem sooner.

• Pet stores, dog parks, and even humane societies can help you find low-cost training classes. Be sure you always check the trainer’s credentials, and ask friends and family for recommendations. Every puppy should at least go to the basic puppy training classes. If you can’t afford a trainer, get a book on training your dog and do it yourself.

Why Does My Dog Suddenly Seem to Act Like a Cow and Eat Grass?

Cow eatImage via Wikipedia
Your dog periodically treats the yard like an all-you-can-eat salad bar, munching on the green grass like a cow. No, your dog is not having an identity crisis. Sometimes, dogs eat grass when they are sick to their stomachs. If your pooch feels nauseous, her first instinct is to clear her belly of the “bad stuff.” That could be too many treats, or even pet food that just didn’t sit well. Grass acts like ipecac, helping your dog to vomit. So if you notice your dog eating grass, take away food and water and watch her carefully. If you see her slink around with her tail between her legs, you should usher her outside. This is a clear sign that she is about to get sick. As you notice her activity returning to normal, allow small amounts of water throughout the day. Return to pet food once you are sure her stomach has stabilized.
Aside from indicating sickness, grass munching may indicate that your dog is not getting adequate fiber from her diet. However, if you are feeding her premium dog food, you can rest assured that nutrient deficiency is not the problem. Your dog probably just needs to throw up, and grass is a sure way to trigger the response.
It is not as unusual as you may think, as this is a natural way for these animals to induce vomiting. If you notice this behavior alot, you may want to check his or her diet out for a better balance of meats and grains, as grains are a filler that dogs in the wild would only eat from the stomach of his or her prey. This may be a signal that there is toomuch grain/meal in your dog's diet.

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Getting your Dog or Cat to Accept Liquid Medication

The threads of the Luer lock tip of this 12ml ...Image via Wikipedia
Pills are easy to wrap in cheese or another meaty treat your dog adores. She’ll barely notice what’s buried underneath the “good stuff.” Giving a dog liquid medication requires more practice and a bit of strategy. Let’s walk through the process:


Prepare the syringe. Your vet will supply a syringe to “upload” the liquid medicine for dropping it into your pet’s mouth. Open the bottle of liquid medication and fill syringe to proper dosage.

Stabilize the dog. You might ask someone to help hold your dog the first time you administer liquid medication. Tip back your dog’s head by placing one hand on the top of the dog’s head, and the other hand (with the syringe), underneath her jaw.
Before administering liquid medication, you must stabilize your dog’s head.
Insert the syringe. With the dog’s head tilted back, put the syringe in her mouth toward one back corner. This position will ensure that more liquid goes down the hatch, even if your dog squirms during the process. If you put the syringe straight in her mouth, and she makes a quick head move to the right or left, your liquid will spill onto the floor.
Treat your dog. Give her a tasty snack and reward her for a job well done. Clean out the syringe and place it in a designated plastic box (a pencil box works well), labeled “liquid medication syringes

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Playing "Which Hand" with your Puppy or Young Dog

To learn more about these rare and primitive d...Image via Wikipedia
This game is simple for puppies to play and requires virtually no training. Ina sense it is a way of communicating and bonding, because you are teaching the dog a game that he will definitely like to play. Do you remember the childhood game, “Which hand is it in?” Usually it was played with something your friend wanted badly, such as a piece of candy. For your dog, the ultimate reward is also a tasty treat.


Here’s how to play:

1. Attention please! Show your dog the treat and he’ll know something exciting is in store.

2. Kneel and conceal. Facing your dog at his level, tuck the treat in one of your palms and place both hand side by side in front of him. Ask, “Which hand?” Put your hands behind your back and trade the treat between hands.

3. Show and reward. Bringing your palms back in front of you, side by side, ask the question again: “Which hand?” He may lick one or both hands. When he is correct, reward him with the treat. Repeat this game and he will catch on to the fact that only one hand contains a treat and he must guess before he gets a snack.

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Some Dogs Slobber Their Water All Over -- Here Are Some Solutions

Arts and Crafts program for Summer ReadingImage by San Jose Library via Flickr
Dogs don’t mind their table manners when they are thirsty. They slurp, drip, slobber, and sometimes spill water from their dishes – all over the place. Offset this mess by preparing their mealtime area by laying a placemat underneath food and water dishes. You can purchase placemats at discount and department stores, and you can buy all sorts of materials designed for other things in order to accommodate a set of big dog bowls. Also, these placemats tend to slip and slide when your dog noses around in bowls, pushing them and the placement across slick tile and wood floor surfaces.


One alternative is to buy a few bathmats of the towel or short rug style. My ex-husband bought a one step ladder to put the water bowl on so the dog doesn’t slobber as much, and he stores the food bowl underneath the ladder. The whole set-up is on a black bath rug, which soaks up the water when his Lab slobbers around, as Labs do. The set-up works quite well, I must say – especially considering he can hardly make himself coffee in the morning (i.e. I’m impressed).

If you are yearning for some arts and crafts with the kids, here is an idea, also:

Why not personalize your pup’s placemats and improve their slide-resistance by making your own? Your dog can help with this project—you’ll borrow his paw for a “stamp.”



Supplies

Fabric or paper to use as a canvas for your design

Nontoxic water-based paint, colors of your choice

Disposable plastic or paper bowls (for holding paint)

Sponges (scrap) for stamping designs

Paint brushes, various sizes

Masking tape

Burlap-textured shelf liner (to affix on placemat back for skid resistance)

Scissors



[b-head] Instructions

1. Gather paint brushes, sponges, and other decorating materials. Set up a place to work outside. Cut fabric or paper several feet long, allowing room for your dogs to walk on the surface. Tape the corners of fabric or paper to the ground. This is your canvas. Pour paint into the plastic or paper bowls.

2. Round up your dog and calm her down with a treat or two. Dip one or two paws at a time in the paint and allow her to jump and dance on the fabric. If you have more than one dog, work with one dog at a time and consider leaving the other dogs indoors so they don’t get their noses in the paint bowls. If authentic paw prints are too labor-intensive, cut kitchen sponges into paw shapes, dip into the paints, and stamp onto fabric or paper. Allow the paint to dry in the sun.

4. Set the dog dishes side by side and measure the length, allowing several inches of extra room on every side. Measure this space with a ruler. Cut rectangles of the same size from your fabric or paper canvas, once it is dry.

5. Embellish the placemats with ribbon, glitter, or any type of crafting medium before lamination to create different designs. There are limitless options.

6. Laminate the design. Most print shops and office supply stores offer lamination services. Or, if you have a wide enough food saver, feed the unlaminated placemats into the saver and operate according to manufacturer instructions, enclosing the mats in plastic.

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3 to 4 Million Cats and Dogs are Euthanized in Shelters each Year -- What You Can Do To Help Lower the Numbers

Photo of a dog behind a chain-link fence at th...Image via Wikipedia
PLEASE HELP SPREAD THE WORD

Being a dog lover makes this a hard post to write in a way, because a big part of me wishes that more people went to shelters to rescue a pet rather than buy a new one -- but on the other hand there is nothing like buying a new puppy or kitten and bonding with it from the outset. The problem is, about 1 in 5 people who get puppies abandon them later when they are bigger and not so cute any more -- that's why shelters are full. 3 to 4 MILLION cats and dogs are put to sleep each year in shelters (ie. killed, euthanized). So I must ask anybody who is considering getting a puppy a couple of questions that you really need to think about, as a prospective owner.... If more people ask themselves these questions before they adopt or buy a dog, there would be fewer dogs in shelters today. WHAT YOU CAN DO IS MAKE SURE THAT A FAMILY OR FRIEND YOU KNOW WHO IS GETTING A DOG HAS CONSIDERED THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS CAREFULLY - OR YOU CAN ASK THEM AND PERHAPS SAVE A LIFE:

Resisting love at first sight is not easy. Those inquisitive puppy eyes, the touch-me soft fur—its playful nature and happy dance when you greet it—of course you must take home this puppy! Certainly, adopting a dog from an animal shelter is a responsible thing to do. Unfortunately, the decision to bring a puppy or mature dog into the family requires more practical considerations. Ignore your tugging heartstrings, at first, until you thoughtfully consider whether now is the right time and whether your lifestyle can accommodate a new “child.” Ask yourself the following questions:


  • Why do you want to own a dog? Adopting a pet on a whim or because a child demands a pet are the wrong reasons. Remember, this dog will be part of your family’s life for up to twenty years, depending on the breed.
  • Do you have time? You cannot ignore a dog when you are tired or get too busy. Dogs require food, water, exercise, care, and companionship every day of every year, for as long as they live. Most shelter dogs are there because their owners didn’t realize what an incredible amount of time and energy it takes to care for them.
  • Can you afford to properly care for a dog? From licenses to training classes, spaying and neutering, veterinarian care, grooming, toys, food, and supplies, the costs are substantial, especially when added up over the dog’s lifetime. Then there are fees associated with problems your dog may confront: flea infestations, worms, and even cancers. (You can buy pet health insurance. Learn more on our website at wendynanrees.com.) In addition to direct costs, there are indirect expenses. You can count on losing at least one piece of furniture, rug, or household accessory as a puppy teethes and innocently plays with, say, the tassels on your heirloom oriental rug.
  • Will your lifestyle accommodate a dog? Are you allowed to have a dog where you live? Many rental communities do not allow dogs, and the majority of the remainder have restrictions. Be sure you know the rules before you bring a dog home.
  • Is now the time? If you have a child who is not yet six years old, you may want to hold off for a few years. Children should be responsible enough to help with pet care, such as filling a water bowl. Likewise, if you are in school, the military, or travel frequently for your job, wait to adopt a dog until you settle down. Some animals are independent and require their human family members only to “check in” on them periodically—some cats are like this. Dogs are not; they require attention and love every day of their lives.
  • Will you be a responsible dog owner? Remember that getting your dog spayed or neutered, obeying your community’s leash and licensing laws, and maintaining and renewing your dog’s identification tags are all requirements of being a dog owner.
  • Are you ready to care for the dog for the rest of his life? Remember that when you adopt a pet, you are making a commitment to care for the animal for his or her lifetime, which includes giving your dog or cat love, exercise, companionship, a healthy diet, and regular vet care.
As I said at the outset -- these are serious questions but being a dog lover I must bring them up. If more potential dog owners would ask themselves these questions before they adopt or buy a dog, there would be fewer dogs in shelters today.








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Our Homes and the Poisons We Leave Our Pets Exposed To (By Mistake).

after partyImage by Bright Tal via Flickr
Our homes are like candy stores for pooches and kitties, who have an appetite for mischief. Puppies are curious; dogs are knee-high detectives, always noticing odds and ends we leave for the taking. Cats are interested in the smallest of things. Sometimes, those items are products we use every day around the house. There’s no need to purge your medicine cabinet and laundry room of products like acetaminophen or fabric softener. But you should be sure to keep these items well out of reach, and always keep an eye on the floor. Just one single acetaminophen pill (Tylenol) can kill a cat quite easily because of their body's reaction to the drug.


You probably wouldn’t guess this, but one of the worst times of year for dog poisonings are Valentine’s Day and other Holidays. We leave chocolates out to feed our friends and guests, and forget that the dog can reach the bowl by climbing up on the chair, or maybe you left them on the coffee table. Remember, dogs like to eat chocolate, but it acts like a poison in them because it is toxic to them and they can overdose on it. So if they are throwing up when you come home and it looks like blood, it is probably chocolate.

If your dog or cat ingests a toxic substance, call your veterinarian or Poison Control Center and keep a special eye out for these open containers:

Acetaminophen, such as Tylenol and Excedrin

Antidiarrhea products like Lomotil and Imodium

Aspirin

Batteries, all kinds, typically found in remote controls, watches, hearing

aids, toys of all sorts

Bleach

Breath strips

Citrus-based cleansers

Diet pills

Fabric softener sheets

Flea and tick products containing organophosphates

Glues, especially strong-hold or expanding glue products

Homemade molding dough (such as Play Doh) or clay

Household cleansers: ammonia, dishwashing and laundry detergent, drain

cleaner, and furniture polish

Ibuprofen/NSAIDS such as Aleve, Advil, Nuprin, Motrin, or Vick’s NyQuil

Lead items (old paint, drapery weights, wine-bottle cork foils)

Marijuana, cocaine, and recreational drugs

Matches

Mothballs

Mouthwash

Pennies (U.S.) minted after 1982 (due to high zinc content)

Phenol-based cleaners like Lysol or Pine-Sol

Potpourri, especially liquid potpourri

Prenatal and other human vitamins, especially high-iron formulations

Prescription medications such as antidepressants, birth control pills,

painkillers, and other opiates

Rat and mouse bait-traps and rodent-control products

Rubbing alcohol

Tobacco and nicotine products such as snuff, nicotine gum, cigarette butts,

cigars, transdermal patches, and more .





These are only some of the things that can hurt our babies, but the whole idea is to "Pet Proof" your home. Make sure cabinets to these areas such as cleaning supplies close well, because when our pets get bored, who knows what our furry friends can get into. Don't let it be something you regret!
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Aug 29, 2010

Happy Manuka! This is one Honey of a Healer...

WUHAN, CHINA - APRIL 9:  Beekeepers pour honey...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Known for its healing properties, Manuka honey has natural antiseptic and antibiotic properties. Read some of the stories that follow this article, and you will likely be as surprised as I was at first!

All honey contains some hydrogen peroxide, but the level varies depending on the type of honey. Manuka honey, in particular, contains an extra antibacterial property found only in honey sourced from Leptospermum plants. You can purchase it at health food stores in aisles where you find supplements and vitamins. Manuka honey is effective for internal and external ailments—some pet owners swear by its ability to clear up skin problems, and others commend the honey’s capability to trigger a healthy appetite or settle gastrointestinal unrest. On labels, study the unique Manuka factor (UMF) rating, such as UMF 10+ or UMF 20+. A higher number indicates a greater concentration of healing antibacterial properties.

Applied topically, Manuka honey naturally heals burns, infections, and psoriasis. The honey destroys wound bacteria and feeds the area with sugars, which triggers new cell growth. Use sterilized honey—it is available in a squeeze tube—and gently rub a layer over the infected area. Place a bandage or gauze dressing over the wound so your dog does not lick off the honey or leave sticky spots on bedding or furniture.

Squirt Manuka honey on a dog biscuit or spread some on a corner of toast. Feed the honey treat to your dog to increase appetite and relieve acid reflux, heartburn, upset stomach, stomach ulcers, or irritable bowel syndrome. (Dogs can suffer from all the same gastrointestinal ailments that we do. In fact, their stomachs are far more sensitive.) You may feed your dog three teaspoon servings of honey a day until conditions improve. It’s always a good idea to consult with your vet before pursuing treatment of any kind, including all-natural holistic remedies.



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You May Not Think Toys Are Such a Big Deal -- But They Are Really Important To Pets

Chewed tennis ballImage by Lord Biro via Flickr

 Toys go a long way toward fighting boredom, especially for a dog that must be left alone for long periods of time. They can also help prevent your dog from developing unacceptable habits and behavior problems. Toys can serve as a distraction for your dog when you don’t have time to play more actively with her. The market is flooded with a wide variety of dog toys. How do you choose good toys for your dog?
Toys should be age-, size-, and strength-appropriate. A chew toy should not be so big that your dog can’t get her mouth around it, nor so small that she could possibly swallow and choke on it. Big strong dogs should have larger, tougher toys.
Toys should be safe for active play. Are there sharp edges or pieces that could easily come off? Are the materials it’s made of safe and nontoxic? Rope toys are available in several shapes, but the most popular is a bone shape with knotted ends. You want to choose one made of cotton, as cotton will break down in your dog’s system if little pieces are chewed off. Nylon or polyester, on the other hand, will not break down and can be dangerous.
Toys should be sturdy enough to stand up to your dog’s attention. Is it something that will be easy for her to tear apart? Does the toy have internal springs or other parts that the dog could chew out and possibly cut their mouth on? If it has a squeaker, is it securely attached so it won’t come out and possibly choke your dog? Some toys that move or make noises have batteries that can burn your dog’s mouth or make her sick if she ingests them. Tennis balls can provide hours of fun, but your dog should not be left unsupervised with a tennis ball, since they can be chewed up so easily. Inspect your dog’s toys weekly for signs of wear. When your dog’s toy begins to fall apart, it can become a choking hazard. (And please never punish your dog for destroying his toys: the whole point of toys is for him to play with them and do what he wants.)
There is no shortage of toys for dogs, and the sheer joy (tail wagging, playful dancing) your dog expresses when you introduce him to a new toy is infectious. You’ll quickly fill a toy bin with new things for your dog to play with, and he’ll treat every one like it’s his favorite. See what we have on our website To Your Pet's Health by Wendy Nan Rees.

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Advice About Dog Bowls - Plastic or Stainless Steel? Which is Better?

Sam's ChristmasImage by tpetriep via Flickr
Your new dog will need dishes of his own, and the selection you’ll find for such a basic need may be your first introduction to the vast world of pet goods. You can spend as much as you want on basics like bowls for kibble. But what does your new pooch really need?
Dog bowls come in different sizes and are made from materials including stainless steel, ceramic, and plastic. You’ll find fancy dishes in pet boutiques that can cost as much as a place setting of china. Discount stores and pet supermarkets carry a host of bowls for dogs. Pace yourself on some of these initial purchases, especially for puppies. As they grow, they will require larger feeding dishes, different collars and leashes, bigger toys, the list goes on. Spend prudently in startup essentials. A sturdy stainless steel bowl may be your best investment.
Stainless steel bowls are completely safe from chipping, which may lead to your dog ingesting sharp shards that scratch, cut, and damage his mouth and digestive system. Just as people are cautious about certain plastic drinking bottles because of their potential to leach toxins, you should also consider your dog’s health when choosing eating and drinking vessels. Your dog will not get sick one day out of the blue because of a plastic dog dish. But over time, he will be better off by drinking from stainless steel, which has no reported leaching risk factors. Plastic bowls are acceptable for dry food only.
Buy bowls that are sized for how large your dog will be full-grown. This way, you will save yourself the expense of buying new bowls as he grows. Bowls should be sturdy and heavy enough so as not to topple over when your dog is enjoying his meal.
Always place food and water dishes in the same place. Choose a spot that is not in a high foot-traffic area, but is visible and easy for your dog to access. You don’t want to hide food and water dishes, but you also do not want to trip over them. Protect the floor with a vinyl placemat so food and water that slops out of dishes can be easily cleaned up (see Create Personalized Paw-Print Placemats tip.). To provide ergonomic eating conditions for your larger dog, and avoid neck-craning to reach down into bowls, consider a feeding system that positions bowls at nose height. (Learn to make a Dog Feeder tip.)

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Do You Really Multiply a Dog's Age By 7 to get Human Years? Not When He or She is a Puppy...


You’ve probably heard about dog years and the rule about multiplying your pup’s age by seven to find out its “human age.” While the equation is not completely scientific, we can count on this estimate to explain why puppies go through their terrible twos, childhood and adolescence before they turn one year old. By the time our senior dogs are slowing down at age ten, keep in mind that when multiplied by seven, that’s seventy human years.
            Understanding your dog’s fast-paced life is especially important during that first year, when behavioral changes mark rites of passage. Here are some guidelines to help you prepare for what to expect from your puppy. Keep in mind that depending on the breed, some puppies will reach adulthood within a year, and others will continue growing (physically) far beyond their first birthday. Smaller breeds tend to mature faster than larger dogs. Consult with your vet for your breed’s expectations, but here’s a basic first-year timeline to get you started:
            1 to 8 weeks:             Baby – early development stage; the puppy learns dog behaviors and eventually weans from mom .
            8 to 12 weeks:  Toddler – human socialization period; puppies are easily frightened and learn from bad experiences.
            12 weeks to 6 months:  Early Adolescence – the puppy will test the rules; the equivalent of human puberty.
            6 months to 1 year:             Adolescence/Young Adulthood – the puppy will continue to experiment and test training commands; by now, the puppy is adjusted in the home and part of the family.
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Wendy Nan Rees uses her 25 years of expertise to answer pet health questions and offer expert advice for pet lovers.

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Her Radio Show "Wendy's Animal Talk" was on 'Healthylife.net' for many years and now we are posting a few of the tips here

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