Caring For Your Older Dog Once your dog becomes older it is time to take some preventative steps in order for them remain healthy, happy and active. Have your vet examine your pet annually or more often, if necessary. As in humans, keep your dogs weight within the proper or optimum range. An overweight dog has far more health problems such as joint problems, arthritis, diabetes and liver or kidney malfunctions. Cut down on the amount of treats given to your pet. It is hard to resist their soulful eyes but always remember that it is for their own good. You do not want to kill your pet by thinking you are being kind to them. Feed your pet once a day or smaller amounts twice a day but remove the food if there is any left. If you have children, explain to them why they should not sneak food to the family pet. As with dogs of any age, make sure there is always fresh, cool water available. Some older dogs have problems getting to the water bowl so either take the water to them or place bowls of water in several different places so they do not have to go far for a drink. If possible take your dog for a short walk daily. This helps the dog's blood circulation and provides some new sights and smells to stimulate them and it gives you quality time to spend with your pet. He may be older but still curious. You may need to switch from dry food to a moist or canned food as your dog ages. His teeth may not be able to handle the hardness of dry kibbles. Looking after your older dog and taking him to the vet regularly helps keep your dog healthy and happy longer. Why Your Dog Barks Dogs bark because we humans want our dogs to bark. For years our domestication process and selective breeding has allowed our dogs to develop their barking abilities. Wolves don't bark Barking was further developed in dogs in order to scare intruders or to help the master out (i.e. on farms to assist in gathering the sheep). Most dogs simply bark to communicate, to get attention, or simply to show their excitement. Training and lifestyle are important factors in teaching the dog how to communicate with its master. If you reward your dog for barking, he will continue to do so. The best thing is to figure out what your dog is trying to tell you and go from there. If you have a dog that barks excessively, try to figure out what he is trying to tell you. If it is out of need for attention, the way to break the cycle is to wait for him to be quiet and then give him the attention he needs. By acknowledging the barking, you reinforce it. Waiting until he quiets will teach him that he gets attention when he is not barking. Some dogs are extremely territorial. They will bark at not only a person approaching, but someone they see walking across the street or on the next block. The best way to stop this is to distract him when he starts to bark. Catch his attention with a treat or by playing. Every time the bark cycle is broken, it sends the message that quiet will get the most reward. Taking the time to discover what your dog is communicating will result in less stress for both you and him. He will get much needed attention and you will get quiet. It's a situation you both win. Disabilities in Dog Owners Just because you are dealing with a disability does not mean you can't have a dog in your life. Studies indicate doing so will benefit you and the dog. There are some things you can do to make the experience easier. If you need help giving your dog medicine, fluids, or shots, ask your veterinarian if he or she knows of anyone who will make home visits. If not, contact local pet-sitters to find ones who will assist you. Many pet-sitters are trained to perform these functions for the sick pet for owners who cannot perform them for themselves or for owners when they are away. To play with your dog, use flashlights or laser pointers. Dogs love chasing the light, and you won't have to make a move. An alternative is a remote control car for him to chase. He gets exercise and you do not get over-exhausted. If you have difficulty performing basic functions for yourself, investigate the use of a service or assistance dog. Assistance dogs are trained to help people with physical limitations perform their everyday functions. Assistance dogs are accepted in public places just as guide dogs and hearing dogs are. Divide large bags of food into smaller containers to help with lifting and filling dishes. If you get large dishes, you will spend less time and energy filling them. There are dog food stands that raise the bowls above floor so you won't have to bend as much when you fill them. Walking a dog when you are disabled can be difficult. Consider hiring a neighborhood teen to do this or have a pet sitter come in and walk your dog each day. Fenced-in yards are another alternative to consider. Having a disability doesn't mean you can't enjoy the companionship of a dog. It takes just a little adjusting for you both to be happy. Disorders Your Dog May Inherit A vital part of good prevention is to know the common types of illnesses and disorders associated with particular dog breeds. For dogs, the parts of their body that are most frequently affected by congenital problems are the central nervous system, the eyes, the muscles, and the bones. For instance, the Beagle, Collie, miniature Poodle, German Shepherd, and Keeshond are more likely to inherit epilepsy. Different types of nervous system disorders are often passed on within certain breeds. Examples are paralysis of the front and back legs, which is common in the Irish Setter, a failure of muscle coordination common in Fox Terrier, and abnormal swelling of the brain is common in the Chihuahua, English Bulldog, and Cocker Spaniel. A great number of common breeds suffer from congenital eye abnormalities including glaucoma, cataracts, and blindness. Breeds such as Basenji, Basset Hound, Pekingese, Lhasa Apso, and Cairn Terrier have a high risk for inguinal hernias (gut protrudes into the groin). Umbilical hernias (gut protrudes through the navel) are inherited defects in breeds like Bull Terrier, Cocker Spaniel, Pekingese, Basenji, Collie, Weimaraner, Airedale Terrier, and Pointer. In order to keep health problems in your dog from getting serious, you need to detect them early. Therefore, it is necessary to give your dog a basic check-up about once a week. This check-up takes no more than a few minutes, and it can help prevent problems as well as expenses down the road. Start with a body rub. This makes your pet comfortable. While giving him his rub, check for any signs of flaking or scabs which can be a sign of parasites, a skin disorder, or allergies. Also check for any lumps and bumps. Although they are a normal part of aging in dogs, they can also be a symptom that there is something wrong. Check for any swelling that could indicate parasites, heart trouble, or cancer. His breathing should be smooth and quiet, unless he is panting. If his breathing is raspy or rattling, he could have a respiratory problem. Your dog's heartbeat should be regular and strong. To check for his pulse, place your hand against his chest by his left elbow. Count the number of beats in 15 seconds and multiply it by four. The rate should range between 60 and 160. Lastly, examine his ears, eyes, and mouth and check for any signs of abnormalities Doggie First Aid Kit As a dog owner, you may find yourself needing to give your dog first aid. Dogs are curious creatures and sometimes get into dangerous situations. When they get into trouble, it will be your job to help. Many of the problems a dog faces are similar to those of our own. Until you can get your dog to a vet, he will depend on you. Having the supplies you need on hand will really help you to be effective. Rolls of gauze and tape are handy to slow or stop bleeding and are necessary in your doggie first aid kit. You can also find some great blood-clotting topical products too. Hydrogen peroxide is important for cleaning wounds. An old clean blanket is essential for wrapping a dog in shock. A first aid kit should also include an antihistamine for bee or wasp stings, an antibiotic gel and an eye wash. Also, absorbent cotton, gauze rolls or pads, scissors (preferably with rounded tips), tweezers, a rectal thermometer; syringes (without the needle) for giving oral medications, elastic bandages. Take time to learn the basics of first aid. Keep your vet's phone number handy in case you need him. If you think your dog may need professional care in the middle of the night or on a weekend, consider calling your vet and advising him. He may have some good advice or instructions to help you reach him. Many cities now have pet emergency centers. It is advisable to keep their number in your first aid kit as well. Keep in mind that an injured dog is scared and may bite. If you feel this is possible, a muzzle is another addition to your kit. Avoid giving your dog Tylenol. Ask your vet before it is necessary what kind of pain medication is okay and keep some of that with the rest. Doggie Sit-Ups Ideal play or training sessions with your dog end with the dog feeling both tired and successful. One method that accomplishes creating a sense of accomplishment in both you and your dog, as well as enforcing obedience, is doing a session or two of doggie sit-ups. It helps to have a lot of small treats on hand for these. At first, you may have to give a tiny bite after each part of the exercise. Eventually, your goal will be to complete the entire set before a treat is given. Start by having your dog sit. Once sitting, have him lay, then sit again and finally stand. This is one sit-up. The ideal session will be to have your dog repeat this sequence of moves a total of ten times, but at first you may only be able to get him to cooperate for one or two. That is fine. Every few days add an additional turn before he gets his treat until he is doing the full ten. This exercise reinforces the basic commands of sit, down and stay. If your dog has yet to learn these commands, you will have to work on them at the same time. This allows you to accomplish two things at the same time. Keep in mind, however, that trying to learn a new command is tiring in itself. Adjust the number of sit-ups accordingly or you are bound to have a very frustrated dog. Dogs love to feel they have made their people happy. Allowing your dog to combine some of the simplest commands into your play session will make him feel he has accomplished this task and he will be all the more eager to do whatever else you have in store for him during this time. Dogs and Cats Compared Dog is essentially a servant. His feelings toward his master are comradely and his manner familiar; he enjoys the master's affection and regard. He will go to any length to please and protect his people. He can be taught any manner of service tasks and will go about them with enthusiasm. His aim is to please. The cat is different. She serves no one, knowingly or willingly. Her one accomplishment -- the hunting of mice, rats and other rodents -- is self-taught. The man does not live who can claim to have trained a cat to perform a task for human benefit. There are no police cats, no watch cats, no sled cats. The cat does not even come when she's called, unless it suits her. Dogs are dependent upon humans. They seek humans for companionship, play and care. They enjoy the role of being part of the "pack" and will go to great lengths to keep that position. Cats are also quite self-sufficient. You never have to entertain them. This is not to say that they cannot be entertained or that they themselves are not entertaining. It is just that their errands are many and their schedules full. Cats prefer going it alone, depending upon their own wit to survive. Whether you choose to share your home with a dog or a cat depends a great deal upon your own personality. If you seek to be in charge, you will come to blows with cat every time. She cannot be controlled. If companionship and undying loyalty are what you seek, a dog will fill the position willingly. There are homes and people for both dog and cat--examine what you expect carefully and choose accordingly. Your home will be blessed with the presence of either. Dogs and Cats Under the Same Roof Dogs are often territorial and will fight not just new cats but other new dogs as well. They tend to mark their territory and will fight anyone who invades their space. Cats have the same tendencies and even if they are smaller than to dogs, they will scratch and fight for their territory. The first step is obedience. This is necessary especially for the dog, which is usually the aggressor in this kind of situation. You have to train your dog to obey when you say "no". Allow your cat to wander around the house. Cats love to roam and this will make her scent scattered in your home. After doing this, lock your cat in one room and let your dog wander around the house sniffing for the cat's scent. This will make your dog acquainted to your cats smell and train the dog that the cat is part of the household. Dogs usually start barking whenever they see some other animals in their territory, hoping to scare them away. They won't really lunge at something immediately. Once he starts barking, this is where the obedience part starts to come in. Say "no" and make him realize that the cat is also a pet. If your dog starts to calm down when in the presence of the cat, then it's the time to let him sniff the cat. Once your dog starts to decide not to bark at your cat you know that you've done the introduction part successfully. The final step is making sure that both pets have the time to coexist. This part is usually the cat's fault. Cats have the tendency to be aloof and stay away from the dog and other people. It's not because they are afraid of the dog but more because it's their nature to be alone. Dogs Can Suffer Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Some dogs are prone to becoming victims of obsessive-compulsive disorder when under stress. The stress can cause either a sudden or gradual onset of the condition. The behavior pattern that emerges will depend on the particular breed. In general, longhaired large breeds of dogs may over groom, herding breeds may chase or hoard and a pure predatory breed may bite, mouth or chase objects. All these have human comparisons. All the behaviors performed by compulsive canines are essentially normal behaviors. They are just performed over and over again and out of context. The same occurs with humans. There is nothing wrong with washing your hands repeatedly, but if you wash your hands several hundred times a day you have a problem. Psychiatrists treat the human problems on a case-by case basis. Veterinarians remain divided regarding the significance of canine overly expressed behaviors. Some feel it may be our attempt to humanize our pets, yet others are not so sure. Whatever the cause, it is very real in some dogs. Lick granuloma in the canine is equivalent to hand washing in the human. Affected dogs lick their wrists or hocks excessively, over-cleaning or over grooming themselves until the skin in these regions is ulcerated. For years, no one knew why dogs engaged in this pointless, mindless behavior. Now, veterinarians are seeing the OCD link and with this understanding are able to treat the condition much more effectively. Lick granuloma primarily affects larger breeds of dogs such as Labradors, golden retrievers, Great Danes and Dobermans. Individual susceptibility and environmental influences are also required for the full expression of the behavior. Affected animals are usually anxious, sensitive, and high-strung and may give an impression of a generalized anxiety disorder. Environmental factors include various stresses and conflict situations, including separation anxiety or boredom. Don't Let Your Dog Walk You * Be Unpredictable Making quick and abrupt turns in the opposite direction anytime your dog starts to get ahead of you will teach him to pay attention to where you're going. Praise him lavishly when he returns to your side and even reward with a small treat if your dog is food motivated. The idea is to stop the pulling before it even starts by catching him off guard. Be calm, no need to scold him, he'll figure it out. You may have to turn around forty times in the first session and barely make it half way down the driveway, but don't worry, it will get better the more you practice. Many dogs catch on quickly to this game and start to watch their owner closely to see what they'll do next. A dog that's paying attention to you isn't pulling on the leash. * Set The Rules And stick to them! Decide once and for all that you will not allow him to pull and then react anytime he tries to move ahead of you. This means you'll have to be watching him closely during the first couple sessions. Allowing him to pull sometimes but not all the time will only confuse your dog. Look at your next couple walks as training experiences, not exercise. Once your dog gets the hang of it then you can start to plan on moving past the driveway. * Practice, Distract, and Practice Some More Teaching good leash walking skills is an ongoing process. You may always need to 'be unpredictable' every once in a while even after your dog understands what you expect. Keep him on his toes and keep practicing. Don't be stingy with the praise, let him know when he's doing the right thing and you'll start to see more of that behavior. Epilepsy in Dogs and Cats Epilepsy in dogs and cats is similar to that in humans. The main symptom is a type of seizure. Seizures can come in many forms and several of these are listed below: Generalized Seizures Generalized seizures are the most common type of seizures in dogs and cats. There are several variations of these seizures: 1. Absence seizures (petit mal): sudden brief loss of consciousness, rare in animals 2. Myoclonic seizures: muscle jerk of one or more muscles 3. Clonic seizures: rhythmic muscle contractions 4. Tonic seizures: increase in muscle tone in all skeletal muscles 5. Tonic Clonic seizures (grand mal): the most common form of seizure in pets Tonic Clonic Seizures Tonic Clonic (grand mal) seizures account for 60% of seizures in cats and 80% of seizures in dogs. They are usually accompanied by a loss of consciousness, and consist of a tonic phase, where the increased muscle tone causes the animal to fall on its side with its limbs extended, and a clonic phase, consisting of intense muscle jerking or paddling movements. In order to diagnose true epilepsy, other causes of seizures must be first ruled out. Once a tentative diagnosis of epilepsy has been made (by excluding all the other known causes of seizures), the animal can be prescribed anticonvulsant drugs. These drugs are not appropriate for animals with seizures caused by a problem outside the brain. The overall goal of anticonvulsant therapy is to eradicate all seizure activity, but this is rarely achieved. A more realistic goal is to reduce the frequency of the seizures to a level that is acceptable for the owner, without having negative side effects for the animal. Since epilepsy is not curable, the owner must be prepared to give the medication for the rest of the animals life. Flea Control Whether you have a dog or a cat, chances are you will find yourself in need of ridding them of fleas at least once. Below are a few suggestions to help you with the task. Keep an Eye on Your Pet Watch your pet for commons signs and symptoms of a flea infestation such as excessive biting and scratching, particularly around the tail and lower back areas. Check for raw patches of skin where your dog or cat may have been scratching at fleas for some time. Another bit of evidence is "flea debris," specks of dried blood that are black in color. Flea Collars and Powders If you have caught the problem relatively early, it may be possible to eliminate fleas by simply using flea collars and powders. There are several brands and types to choose from, and many contain a special comb with fine teeth that is designed to remove fleas from fur. Flea Baths It's helpful to bathe your pet frequently using a specially formulated soap or treatment. It's necessary to take into consideration the type of fur or coat your pet has when bathing. This is particularly true for dogs as some breeds have essential oils that shouldn't be washed away with soap and water more than once or twice a year. If bathing in a flea bath isn't an option for your pet, consult your vet for other alternatives. Monthly Medication There are pills available for your pet to take on a monthly basis that will prevent fleas from reproducing, but they do not kill the ones that have already reached adulthood. There are also multi-purpose medications and products available that are designed to prevent fleas from reproducing as well as controlling heartworm, hookworms, whipworms and roundworms. Fleas will always exist, but with careful planning and proper treatment, they need not become a problem for you or your pet. Household Dog Dangers Dogs have a tendency of trying to eat just about everything they come across. In most cases, this causes some slight discomfort. There are things, however, that can be dangerous enough to cause death to your dog if he eats them. Following is a brief list: 1) Antifreeze: Many people do not realize it, but common antifreeze kills many pets each year. It smells and tastes very sweet to your dog and is very appealing to him. 2) Chocolate: Chocolate contains a substance called the obromine which is toxic to dogs. Baking chocolate and dark chocolate is especially dangerous. 3) Bleach: As you might imagine, household bleach is toxic to dogs. Keep all products containing bleach out of your dog's reach. 4) Tylenol: As little as two regular strength Tylenol tablets can kill a small dog. 5) Watch Batteries: If your dog ingests a watch battery, it can cause a potentially fatal ulceration in the stomach within 12 hours. All other alkaline batteries are toxic to dogs as well. 6) Moth Balls: Moth balls are very dangerous to dogs. They contain an insecticide that causes central nervous system excitement and seizures. 7) Fabric Softeners and other detergents: All sorts of household detergents are toxic to dogs at one level or another, but fabric softeners fall into the highly toxic category. 8) Mouthwash: Mouthwash can contain boric acid which is highly toxic to dogs. Symptoms of poisoning by mouthwash include vomiting, drooling, seizures, and coma. 9) Peach Pits: With most fruits, the pits and the seeds are toxic to dogs. Signs of poisoning include drooling, vomiting, and lethargy. 10) Household Plants: Many common and popular household plants are highly toxic to dogs. A partial list of toxic plants includes poinsettias, lilies, ferns, devil's ivy, aloe, and ivy. If you think your dog may have eaten any of these substances, or anything else that could poison him, call a vet immediately. It could save his life. How to Deal With Separation Anxiety Many dogs are put to sleep by owners who can no longer figure out what to do with a dog that barks or howls constantly when they are gone, destroys things in their absence and basically makes a nuisance of himself. These people do not understand that the dog is not being disobedient--he is most likely suffering from separation anxiety. Dogs are pack animals. As his family, you are his pack. When you leave him alone, he feels lost and scared. Often loud noises will frighten him. His howling and destructiveness are the only way he has of showing his displeasure. You can help him get through this with patience. Try to find a room where he feels comfortable--one that isn't close to a street or other traffic. If possible, buying a crate made specifically for the size of your dog will help him feel more comfortable. Placing a loved toy and an item of clothing that smells like you inside with him will increase that comfort. Start by leaving him only a few minutes at a time. He needs to be confident that you will return. You can gradually extend the amount of time as he becomes more comfortable. Praise him greatly for every time he waits quietly. If all else fails, talk with your vet and see if he can prescribe some type of anti-anxiety medication to give your dog when you need to be away. Your dog can't help his anxiety. You are his safety and he feels lost without you. Give him time and patience and he will eventually learn to tolerate your absence. There is no reason to have a healthy animal put down because he loves you so much he misses you when you are gone. Work with him. You and he will both benefit from this. Human Food Could Kill Your Dog Let's face it--dogs are not known for being fussy eaters. Some dogs will eat anything and everything they can get into their mouth. This isn't a big problem with many human foods, but there are a few that could be potentially fatal to your dog. We are all aware that many dogs cannot eat chocolate. While a tiny bite here and there may not hurt most dogs, it could kill others. Dark chocolate and baking chocolate are especially hazardous. Onions are another no-no for your dog. There are chemicals in onions that turn to poison within the dog's digestive system. This is true of some strains of mushrooms as well. Rather than take the chance, it is important to keep both these substances out of your dog's reach. Garlic is another culprit. The toxic effect of this spice is quick. Any kind of seed could cause problems in your dog. While most will only cause discomfort and possible vomiting, seeds such as apple seeds can be fatal. If you have a dog that likes to investigate the garbage, it is important to make sure he can't get to these. Chicken bones are another hazard to dogs, as are those of turkey and duck. These bones tend to shatter and the sharp pieces can poke a hole in your dog's stomach or intestine. Dogs are known for eating many things a human stomach cannot handle. This, however, does not mean they can eat all a human can. To be safe, make sure foods are not left where your dog can discover them. The most innocent looking item could be the one that kills your dog. A few minutes of caution can save a lifetime of sadness should you lose your dog. Keeping Your Dog From Jumping Dogs want to see and interact with people face to face. This leads to many dogs jumping in order to have that face-to-face contact. When your dog is small, this may not be a problem, but large dogs can be intimidating when they jump, not to mention it can be painful. The first thing you can do to prevent jumping is to kneel down to the dog's level. This will allow him to see your face and eliminates the main reason he jumps in the first place. Getting down on his level will let him know you see him. Another method you can use if the above doesn't work is to turn your back on your dog. Look up toward the ceiling and refuse to acknowledge him until he settles and sits. Dogs hate to be ignored, especially if that is the reason for their jumping in the first place. For this method to work, you must be steadfast in not making any eye contact until he has calmed. The slightest acknowledgment will get him excited all over again. A third method that seems to work well with larger dogs is to wait until they jump and gently grab hold of their front legs. Slowly walk the dog backwards a couple of feet then gently set his front paws on the floor, saying "down" firmly. Dogs hate to walk backwards, and doing so will make him start to associate the unpleasantness with jumping. Saying the word "down" as you place his paws on the floor will get him to associate it with keeping his feet on the floor. It doesn't take long to train a dog not to jump as long as you are consistent with whichever method you choose. It also helps if you can enlist the cooperation of other family members so everyone is using the same method. This creates less confusion and more success. Keeping Your Dog Safe On the Road Car rides are the favorite of many dogs. There are some precautions you can take to make sure this activity will be enjoyable for both of you for years to come. If you have any type of car with a trunk open to the inside of the car or with some other vehicles, you can have your dog ride in the back separated from you by a gate or a net. If you have a regular car, there are special dog seat belts and other types of restraints available. You don't want your dog flying forward if you must stop quickly. You also don't want him trying to climb into the front and distracting you. Dog owners who drive a pickup truck should not let dogs ride free in the pickup bed. This can create a dangerous situation for the dog and other drivers if your dog falls out or decides to jump out. Dogs that ride without restraints in the pickup bed may go flying if you stop short and suddenly. Tying the dog in the bed is not a good idea either as the dog may still jump or fall out and wind up being choked or dragged along the road The best and safest solution is to have your dog ride in the cab of the truck with you. . Never leave your dog in the car with the windows completely up--especially in summer. The interior of a car can heat up quickly, reaching temperatures in excess of 120 degrees in a very short time. This could cause heat exhaustion and even death in your dog. If you are going to have to leave the vehicle and can't take your dog with you, it is best to leave him at home for this trip. It is better to have him disappointed today than not around tomorrow. Making Homemade Pet Food We want our pets to have the best possible care--and this includes feeding them appropriately. Below is a brief idea of what food is best for your pet. Animals, because they are color blind, choose their foods by smell. Most dogs like liver, fat, garlic, onions, horsemeat, lamb, beef, cheese and fish. Cats enjoy chicken, liver, fish, turkey, lamb, and yeast, and prefer fresh to aged flavors. Animals do not need salt added to their diet as the natural salt in the food is enough for them. Dogs may eat any vegetable they want, but cats should not have any starchy veggies, like peas and corn. Some dogs and cats even enjoy fruits! It's a good idea to always add a grain, such as Kibble, wheat germ, cooked oatmeal or whole wheat bread to meat dinners. For dogs use 75% carbohydrate foods (grains and vegetables) to 25% meat; for cats use half carbohydrate foods to half meat. One way of making sure your dog or cat gets a healthy diet is to make it yourself. This way you can be assured it is fresh and contains only healthy ingredients. A very good recipe that can be adapted for either a dog or cat is: Combine 1 chicken liver, 1 giblet, 1 chicken heart, 1 chicken neck, 2 cups water and 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley. Cover and simmer until the giblet is tender. Chop all the meat for dogs removing bones and mix with kibble; for cats, you may want to grind the meat in the blender. Taking the time to prepare your pet's food will not only save you money in the long run, but also provide them with healthy meals that can be adapted to add variety and account for personal tastes. What more could your pet want? Making Nail Clipping Less Stressful While a vet can and will clip your dog's nails for you, many times you will want to save the cost and trip by doing it yourself. Below are a couple of suggestions to make this session less stressful for both you and your dog. To clip your dog's nails you will need some basic equipment that you can pick up at any good pet supply store. Special dog nail clippers have a different shape and are specially designed to make the clipping as fast and painless as possible. There are other items you can buy to make it easier to trim your dog's nails too - various products that encourage the blood clotting process are very useful in case of messy clipping accidents. . When clipping your dogs nails for the first time its important to ask someone who knows how to do it to show you. If your dog has dark nails (as many do) you will want to watch to get an idea of where your dogs "quick" is located. Most veterinarians will clip your dogs nails for you and this is the best way to learn. Don't clip your dogs nails until you are completely sure what you are doing. Not only will your dog pick up on your anxiousness but he will most probably make things difficult for you. Many people find that one of the best ways to ensure a calm and easy nail clipping session is by walking the dog before you start with the clipping. Tire your dog out well and he might not be able to make as much of a fuss as he'd like. Even the simple act of massaging your dogs paws for a few minutes every day to desensitize your dog to being touched there. Parvovirus in Dogs Parvo is a serious viral disease that can be deadly even if treatment is given. Parvovirus is a disease that attacks dividing cells. The most prominent location for dividing cells in your dog's body is the intestinal lining or the lining of the digestive system. When this disease attacks and kills these cells it causes dogs and puppies to not be able to absorb nutrients or liquids. Parvo is seen more in puppies than in adult dogs, but both can catch the disease. Symptoms of parvo include diarrhea, vomiting and lethargy. Most dogs stop eating or have a loss of appetite, diarrhea, high fever, and depression. Their stool can be very liquid, foul smelling, usually yellow in color, and contain blood. The secondary symptoms appear as severe gastrointestinal distress, which includes vomiting and bloody diarrhea. In the later stages of parvo dehydration, shock, and death. Transmission of parvo from one dog to another occurs through their feces. Parvo can be carried in an adult dog that shows no outward signs, but the disease can be found in their stool. The disease is not an air born type, but can be transmitted through the sole of your shoe and even birds may carry this deadly disease into your yard if they have been in contact with the infected feces. All dogs and puppies are susceptible to parvo but there are a few breeds that seem to be more susceptible than others. These include Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, and other black and tan breeds. These breeds usually are more prone to contracting this disease and not recovering. Without treatment your dog only has a 20% survival rate and with treatment an 80% survival rate. So, of course, the best medicine is to prevent the exposure and to vaccinate your dog against this deadly disease Pet Socialization Socializing your pet to accept new dogs into the household is not always an easy task. The dog usually has its own ideas of its territory and home and is generally not a generous creature when it come to sharing but would much rather chase the intruders away. We have to reprogram the dogs thinking to make it understand that chasing the cat or iguana or whatever other pet you may have, is not acceptable. To start, make certain that the new animal will be safe. Place the new pet in a pet carrier or some other sturdy structure that prohibits the dog from actually physically contacting the animal but still allows for both dogs to see, smell and hear each other. This provides a way for both dogs to acclimate to each other in a safe, though possibly a bit stressful, situation. In later steps, gloves might be advisable to avoid scratches from a nervous pet. After the dogs have both calmed a bit give them each a small reward, such as a morsel of some favorite food. Be sure to give the dog lots of verbal praise and affection when it is not barking or trying to get to the new animal as this will show the dog that you are accepting of the new pet's presence and you expect him to be also. One last point to keep in mind is that just like humans, not everyone is going to get along. There will be days where the dog and the cat are going to feud or the iguana will get cantankerous and slap the dog with his tail for the fun of it. Some dogs were just never meant to live in harmony but with a lot of patience and a little direction you can make your household fairly peaceable most of the time. Preventing and Treating Heatstroke Heat stroke, a condition that is caused when a dog is unable to purge unneeded heat from their bodies, raises the temperature of their delicate internal organs and causes massive damage to a dog's living tissue, This can kill the dog.. The signs of heatstroke are many, but varied and very easily discerned. Such signs include: increased panting or breathing (this sort of fast panting/breathing sounds more desperate than normal panting/breathing), heightened pulse rate, and bright red gums. Dogs also tend to look hot or as if they're wilting, just like humans do. If left untreated, heat stroke leads to shock or unconsciousness. The dog will need to be moved into a cool area with good ventilation, as well as being soaked in cold water or gently sprayed with cold water from a hose if a tub of ice water isn't immediately available. Be careful however, as once the dog's temperature drops back down to a healthy 103 degrees Fahrenheit (39 degrees Celsius), leaving the dog in cold water any longer (the cooling process is very fast) risks causing hypothermia, so keep a close eye on your pet as he cools down after heat stroke. Be especially protective of older and younger dogs, both of which suffer heatstroke more easily. Once your pet has stabilized and the situation seems to be over, you should still bring your dog to the veterinarian. Heatstroke has hidden effects, such as dehydration and brain damage, which may only show after the immediate danger of death is over. All in all, heat stroke is easy to prevent. Keep plenty of water for him to drink and a shady spot to get out of the sun. Avoid excessive exercising on hot days. Simple steps, yet worth the effort to keep your dog healthy in the heat. Preventing Arthritis in Dogs Some dogs are more prone to arthritis than others. Arthritis and bone disease usually take one of several types. These include hip dysplasia, dislocation of the kneecap, arthritis of the elbow, swelling and pain in the leg bones, and degeneration of the shoulder joint. Hip dysplasia is a malformation of the hip sockets that allow excessive movement in the joint. This condition causes chronic inflammation and calcium deposits. Dislocation of the kneecap is a malformation of the leg bones that causes the kneecap to continually pull out of its place and slip back and forth, creating a low-grade inflammation. Arthritis of the elbow is a hereditary condition caused by improper bone formation. Swelling and pain in the leg bones is caused by insufficient production of vitamin C, which results in poor nutrition and heredity. Degeneration of the shoulder joint is the breakdown of cartilage in the shoulder causing inflammation and pain when moving. These conditions are mostly hereditary and could be prevented if the female dog were fed properly throughout her pregnancy. The period of growth inside the uterus is most vital in terms of the formation of structure and essential tissues. Proper nutrition is a must during this stage. Unfortunately, many people don't consider the effects of poor nutrition on the unborn babies. Giving your dog vitamin C on a regular basis also decreases or prevents some of these conditions from developing. Supply your dog with 250 to 2,000 milligrams of vitamin C per day, depending on the age and size of your dog. For example, a small Chihuahua puppy should get a dose of 250 milligrams per day and a large Doberman would get a dose of 500 milligrams per day. It is best to consult a vet who is informed in the use of vitamins. He will be able to help you find the correct dosage. Skin Irritation in Dogs Dogs can suffer from skin problems the same as humans. How you treat the particular problem will depend on what is causing it. Below I will cover the most common skin irritations in dogs. One of the most common problems in dogs is the presence of fleas and ticks, which are parasites that live on the surface of the skin and feed on the dog's blood. These parasites' saliva causes skin irritation and results in intense scratching. There are preventive products available for use on a monthly basis that will prevent this type of infestation. Mange is a skin problem caused by mites that burrow underneath the dog's skin, causing intense and even agonizing itching. Bald spots or inflamed red skin are common symptoms of mange. Two types of mange exist in dogs: sarcoptic mange and demodectic mange, depending on the kind of mite involved. Mange or scabies causes intense itching in the dog as the mites burrow under the skin and even lay their eggs there. Scabies can infect humans as well and cause itchiness, although infection in humans usually disappears by itself after a while. However, it is still important for people to seek treatment if they get infected. The best way to kill the mites is to soak your dog in a lime and sulfur medicated dip for 10 to 15 minutes a few times in a week. The dip should not be washed off, but left to dry on your dog's skin and fur. During this time, it's best to watch your dog closely and prevent him from licking himself dry. It is best to check with your vet if your dog is itching and you can't find any parasites. It is possible he is experiencing an allergy or simply his coat is too dry. The vet will be able to help diagnose his exact problem. Teaching An Abused Dog to Trust Often you will come across a dog that has been abused at one point in his life. These dogs are difficult to deal with as the normal things we do causes them anxiety and fear. You can, however, increase your chances of teaching an abused dog to trust with a few simple changes in approach and a lot of patience. When interacting with this dog, bend down to appear less threatening. When talking to him, keep your voice low and cheerful. A loud or frustrated tone will cause him to fear. Call him to you; don't approach him. If he makes an effort to obey, praise him. Don't wait for him to obey completely. Remember, he may be used to getting hit when he approaches someone. When you do get to pet this dog, avoid his head. Keep your hand palm up as it approaches him and gently rub under his chin or on his chest. Rubbing either spot tends to calm a dog. If he moves to step backward, let him retreat. In time, he will stay longer. When a dog is nervous or scared, he will often wet the floor involuntarily. If this should happen, it is important not to allow your frustration to show. It is not a deliberate attempt at disobeying and will likely disappear as he gains trust in you. Keep any sessions short, with just a few minutes of actual touch each time. You can gradually increase the time as his trust grows. Often, just sitting quietly and waiting for him to approach you will make him feel comfortable. If your initial attempts fail, try this. A once-abused dog can be as trusting and loving as any other. All it takes is patience on the part of those in his life. A crouching position, low voice and appropriate touch will win him over eventually. Top Dog Diseases Following is a list of the top diseases experienced in dogs. Many are easily prevented with immunizations. Those that don't have preventive shots can often be avoided with proper care. Make sure your dog is up-to-date on all shots and make it a point to know the causes of these disorders in order to give him the best possible care. Distemper: Distemper is fatal in 80% of puppies and 50% of adults. All dogs are extremely vulnerable, and should be vaccinated, with subsequent boosters in keeping the recommendation of a Veterinarian. Parvovirus (Parvo): Parvo is extremely contagious, especially among puppies, and can lead to death within 48 to 72 hours after exposure. Symptoms include depression, loss of appetite, vomiting and severe diarrhea Rabies: Rabies is a virus and becomes fatal when symptoms appear. Because rabies can be fatal to humans and other mammals, state and local laws uniformly require rabies vaccination, many mandating booster shots yearly. Kennel Cough: This is a respiratory disease especially prevalent in kennels and shelters. Symptoms can include a dry hacking cough along with inflammation of the larynx, bronchial tubes and trachea. Vaccination, as often as every six months is recommended. Leptospirosis: Symptoms of Leptospirosis include lethargy, kidney inflammation, low-grade fever, vomiting, reddening of the mucous membranes and conjunctiva, and blood clotting abnormalities. Infectious canine hepatitis: Lyme Disease: Symptoms of Lyme Disease in dogs will include lethargy, joint pain, lack of appetite, lymph node enlargement, and fever. Coronavirus: Diarrhea and vomiting are symptomatic of this dog disease so it can be confused with parvovirus. Other indications are loss of appetite, smelly diarrhea, lethargy and dehydration.. Heartworm: Heartworms are parasites that grow and multiply, infesting the chambers in the heart, arteries in the lungs. Symptoms appear gradually, usually manifested in easy tiring, lethargy and a soft cough. If not treated, it eventually brings on death by congestive heart failure in a once active animal Traveling With Your Pet Traveling with your pet can be hassle-free with a little bit of planning. Below are some tips to help you with this. If your pet is on medication, bring plenty of it so you're not running out of medication when it's needed. It would also be a good idea to have your veterinarian contact information in case you loose the medication, so the vet can call in a prescription should the other get lost. Find out ahead of time that the hotel you make reservations at will accept pets. You don't want to assume that there is a pet friendly hotel in a town you intend to stay in and when you get there, you're turned away for having a pet or the one's that allow the pets are all booked up. Make sure your pet wears a collar with tags. One tag should be a current rabies tag and the other tag should have the dogs name, your name, address, town, state, and phone numbers. If you have a cell phone, add your cell phone number to the ID tag. It wouldn't hurt to get a microchip implanted either. This is a much more reliable source of identification. Bring along your pet's food dishes, bed or pillow and a couple of its favorite toys. Having familiar items along for the trip can help ease the stress of traveling and make the trip more enjoyable for both you and your animal companion. Stop frequently for exercise breaks. A well-exercised animal will sleep and not be all over the place in a vehicle. Most highway rest stops have places to walk your dog or cat. Follow the guidelines and make sure to clean up after your pet. Common courtesy will insure the facilities will welcome pets in the future. What is Distemper? Anyone with a dog has heard the term distemper, but do you know what it is? The following article will give you a brief overview. Canine distemper is a highly contagious disease caused by a virus attacking the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems of dogs. Although dogs are the most commonly affected, Canine Distemper is also seen in foxes, ferrets, mink and many other carnivores. These infected animals are often the cause of the spread of this disease to domesticated dogs. Canine Distemper is spread through bodily secretions (nasal fluid for example. The most common way it is caught is by breathing in particles secreted by infected dogs. For several weeks after recovery, a dog will still carry the virus that can lead to further contamination if not properly quarantined. Upon contracting the virus, dogs often appear "normal" for several days. The initial symptoms of the disease are runny nose, water eyes and a sore throat. The dog's temperature will increase to approximately 103.5¡F (39.7¡C). Over the next couple of days the symptoms worsen with the tonsils becoming enlarged, and the dog develops diarrhea. After approximately four weeks the virus begins to affect the brain. The dog will start twitching, which will gradually turn in to larger convulsions. The convulsions normally become so frequent and violent, that euthanasia is often carried out at this stage. At this time, there is no cure for the actual virus that causes Canine Distemper. Treatment consists of controlling spread and severity of secondary symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea. Constant care is needed to make your dog as comfortable as possible. The best thing to do is to have your dog immunized against this disorder. This will make it unnecessary to put yourself and your dog through the hardship and heartache associated with Canine distemper. When You Don't Want to Medicate Your Dog Sometimes you want to avoid medicating your dog if possible. There are some easy home remedies you can safely use. If a solution you hear does not sound safe it is better to consult a vet first. The following can all be used safely on your dog. Ticks or fleas Make a paste of orange rinds and apply it evenly on the fur of the dog. Let it remain there for five hours and then wash it gently. This is one easy and safe home remedy for helping your dogs get rid of ticks and fleas. Dry, cracked paws Take Vaseline or petroleum jelly and apply it to the paws for four to five days. You will find the expected improvement and the paw will heal. Odor problem Add a few drops of vinegar in the dog's bath water. If you have trouble getting your dog in the bath, using baking soda as a dry shampoo will work. Sprinkle it on your dog's coat and leave set for a few minutes and then brush out. Insects and bites Insect stings and bites are another common problem with dogs. As soon as you notice this, put adequate solution of baking soda and water on the stung area. Apply ice for any swelling. If you notice any difficulty breathing after a sting, however, take your dog to the vet immediately as he may be allergic to the sting. A word of caution is in order here. Never give your dog anything involving onions or garlic, as these are toxic to a dog. If your dog is experiencing vomiting, diarrhea or seems to be in pain, do not try any home remedies. Call your vet immediately. It is better to be safe than to lose your beloved friend. Winter Safety Tips for Your Dog Be aware of exactly how cold it is, including the wind chill factor. A doghouse is good to have but may not protect them from frostbite on their extremities. Be sure to bring your pet in out of the cold. Put down a warm blanket for them to sleep on, since tiles can be cold. You can also purchase beds made for dogs at your local pet store. Another misconception is that snow is a substitute for fresh water. Make sure that your pet always has fresh water available to drink, regardless of the weather conditions. Fur can provide a measure of warmth for your pet, but fur that is long can also pick up clumps of snow and ice, making it uncomfortable for them. Trim the areas around the paws to keep this from happening. Dogs with short hair don't get the same level of warmth as dogs with long hair. Buy them doggie sweaters or knit one yourself. They will keep your dog warm and make them look even more adorable. Many areas salt icy streets to provide traction. This salt or deicer can be painful to dogs, if they get into cracks in their paws. By rubbing a thin film of petroleum jelly on the bottom of their paws, it will lessen the amount of salt that sticks to them. When you get back home, be sure to clean their feet so that they will always be able to walk comfortably. Damp fur can be uncomfortable for your pet. When coming back from a walk in rainy or snowy conditions, be sure to dry them off, preferably with a blow dryer. The cold of winter can be just as dangerous to your dog as the summer heat. Use common sense and keep him safe and warm. Your Dog's Ear Infection Dogs are prone to ear infections because of the anatomy of their ears. They have a horizontal and a vertical component to them, so it is hard for anything in to drain out. Signs of an ear infection include excessive head shaking, yellow to brown oozing in the ears, or a yeast-like smell. Additional signs of ear infections include redness and swelling. There are several causes of ear infections. The most common cause of ear infections are due to allergies. Some dogs are more prone to allergies than others; therefore they get more ear infections. If your dog does have an ear infection it is important to properly clean your dog's ears before applying any medication. To clean your dog's ears, start by placing a few drops of an ear cleanser into the ear and massage the ear to help loosen any debris that is in there. Then use a cloth or cotton gauze to wipe the dirt out. After your dog's ears are thoroughly clean, you can then apply your medication. Follow your veterinarian's advice about how much medication to apply to the ear, usually a few drops. The treatment your veterinarian will prescribe will vary depending on the cause of the ear infection. For yeast infections, they might prescribe anti-fungal medication. For bacterial infections they will probably prescribe antibiotics. Normally, treatment is applied directly into the ears, but in severe cases systemic treatment may be needed. This usually means having to give your dog pills orally. Some breeds of dogs that are prone to ear infections include breeds with large ears that flap over the ear canal, and breeds of dogs that have a very small canal. These dogs need their ears checked often. By knowing what to look for, you can detect ear infections early. How To Train Your Dog To Heel Off The Leash Important -- When you take the leash off, remember the following: Your dog should not run off, with you chasing vainly behind, yelling for Fido to come back. Yes, if you want Fido to free heal, you must have your dog trained to heal on the leash first. This is how you need to start; Take your dog off it's leash Walk in a straight line. (Angling into your dog will cause her to heel wide.) Walk briskly! Don't walk at the pace of your dog. Don't wave your hands about -- hold your LEFT hand close to your body! Make sure you always give the first command in a happy tone of voice.(Your dog needs to know that you are happy -- don't try to teach your dog anything if you are in a bad mood.) Change your voice to a commanding tone or call your dog's name sharply if they don't keep up to your walking pace or if they amble away. AFTER the second command, gently pat your side and give praise.(Give praise at every opportunity) If forging (Fido tries to get ahead of you) is your problem, or if your dog attempts to dart off, you must stand still! Signal back with your left hand and repeat the heel command forcefully, then pat your side coaxingly. Remember, training your dog is not unlike training your child to behave in a way society expects. Give them rules and bounderies. Be firm about what is right and what is not. Praise whenever you have an opportunity, That is, whenever you dog performs as asked. When your dog is doing a good job of learning, give it the commendation it deserves! Praise it while it is actually learning and performing well. If the dog you are training is large, make sure you carry the leash folded twice, with the snap end in your RIGHT hand. If the dog fails to pay attention, call her name loudly or reach out and "spank" her playfully on the hindquarters with the end of the leash. You should then coax your dog close by patting your side. (Never hit hard or in such a way that you cause you dog pain. Just the LIGHT spank is all that's needed) If all attempts to keep your dog at heel position fail, it's time to put the leash back on, give it ONE good jerk to bring the dog in close, and try again. The change in voice, followed by flattery, with the occasional use of the leash, should eventually teach your dog to stay at your side at all times. Especially if you make the heeling fun! Spaying of the Female dog Spaying of the female dog is undertaken to control the unwanted pregnancy by crossing of some unknown or country or non-descript dogs. The spaying of the dog reduces the aggressiveness of the dog. By spaying, one can reduce the incidences of the commonly encountered reproductive diseases like pyometra. Spaying also helps to control the population in case of stray animals and many nations are doing these operations by removing the ovaries from the female animals. Experienced veterinarians are required to do the spaying in case of female dogs and the postoperative care is to be given more emphasis. If proper control measures are not taken after the surgical operation for the removal of ovary, then the infections may start setting in and the animal may end up in development of peritonitis and then toxemia sets in, causing unwanted health problems. Death of the dog may finally occur, if the dog is not provided an effective and proper veterinary care. A female dog that is spayed before the occurrence of first heat will have almost a zero chance of development of mammary cancer, which is more common with the dogs that are not spayed. A female dog generally comes to heat once in eight months or so. During the heat occurrence, there is bleeding from vagina and the dog may cross with the unwanted male and the spaying activity prevents all these. In case of aged dogs, the dog may often get signs of increased thirst, anorexia, vomiting etc. that are so common with pyometra. Pyometra means the presence of pus in the uterus. Once pyometra occurs, it involves many discomforts to the animal in addition to the cost factor involved for the therapy also. Such pyometra is totally prevented by spaying because in the case of spaying, you are removing both ovaries and the uterus. Spaying and neutering Spaying and neutering of dogs are highly wanted if you don't want to breed the dogs and however, these activities need to be carried out by qualified veterinarians specialized in pet care and management. Anesthesia is required along with due surgical procedures for carrying out the spaying and neutering. One has to understand first the terms like spaying or neutering. Both are related to the surgical approaches of sterilization in case of females and males respectively. However, the term neutering is also related to such procedures in both sexes. Accidental pregnancies that are not wanted can be highly minimized by these procedures. Spaying and neutering helps to prevent occurrence of pyometra, which is a common reproductive disorder-giving problem to the dog owners. In male dogs, the neutering helps to prevent the occurrence of prostate enlargement or cancer. Hence, these help to minimize the incidences of reproductive disorders in dogs. By these spaying and neutering, the male dog's desire in search of female dog in heat is highly minimized and hence, wandering of male dog is reduced. The animal becomes calm also by these surgical remedies. Territorial behavior of these animals is also highly minimized by these in case of male dogs. Spaying of your dog before the occurrence of first heat is the best one to avoid the incidence of breast cancer. If the dog is spayed after the first heat, the chances of occurrence of breast cancer in them is more and has been proved by research. Younger group of dogs need to be subjected to these operations to avoid complications in future. Many veterinarians prefer the spaying and neutering of dogs only at the age of five to six years. However, these can be performed even at the age of three to five years. Postoperative care needs to be followed meticulously to avoid the occurrence of infections by microbial organisms. Home made diets Home made diets are important in the dog feeding. Many a times, the commercial diets consist of food items that have artificial coloring agents and flavoring agents that are harmful to the dog's body. Home made food items have the guarantee of freshness in the preparation unlike the ready-made commercial items. The preservatives added in the commercial food items may not be the suitable ones to the dogs from the health point of view. Even in case of renal diseases in dogs, the home made diets may be made with ground beef, slices of bread, calcium carbonate, boiled eggs etc. The purpose is to have the restricted protein supply in the feed items prepared. This should be carried out with home made diets prepared exclusively for the dogs suffering from renal diseases. Water is added in sufficient quantities to help the proper metabolism in the digestion-impaired renal cases. The dog may have allergic symptoms like severe itching, which may not get corrected by different kinds of medications employed over a period of time. Such cases may get easily treated once the dog food is changed from the commercial type of food to the home made food items. Often, the home made food items are prepared using the freezing procedures to kill the germs or by adding grape seed extracts to provide sufficient antioxidants to the home made food items. Food grade vinegar is also added in many times to the meat pieces prepared in a fresh manner. All these can be enriched with vitamin supplements that are available in fruit essences, fish oil etc. Cranberry juice, bananas, fish and meat are prepared in a quality manner and no preservatives are added during the preparation of these kinds of food items and the dog becomes more active after the consumption of such food items. How much should I feed my dog? Many people will give different types of answers based on their experience with their dogs. However, the scientific facts related to the feeding aspects in case of dogs need to be given emphasis during the feeding activities maintained in case of dogs. Usually the puppies should not be separated before they are eight weeks old. However, some times the orphaned puppies may exist. Usually about five percent of the body weight may be taken as criteria for the quantity of food to be given to the puppies. However, the amount that is consumed by the dog varies with size of the dogs also. However, one can have a thumb rule of feeding the puppy goes until you see visible fullness of the abdomen to a moderate degree. If you are going on feeding the animal without giving emphasis to the animal's stomach appearance, then the puppy may experience some kinds of digestive upsets and the diarrhea may occur in them. This may cause many inconveniences to the owner as well as the puppy. Unlike adult dogs, the puppies need to be fed with restricted amounts of food but in more frequencies. However, once the age advances, the amount may be increased to some extent but the frequency of feeding is often decreased in many occasions. A dog on a raw diet may consume only two to four percent of their body weight. Just observe closely the feeding pattern of the dog and the body condition of the animal. If the dog becomes obese, just reduce the quantity of food and if the dog becomes thin, then have an increase in the feeding items. As mentioned earlier, puppies and adolescent dogs eat more than the adult dogs. Likewise the geriatric dog eats less than the adult dog due to the reduced movements of the dog. However, remember to restrict the amounts of protein during the feeding of diet to the aged dogs. How to Know if Your Dog's Diet Contains Enough Fatty Acid Does your pet's skin and coat look shiny and healthy, or is your dog's fur lacking the silky appearance you prefer? Could this indicate the need for more fatty acids in your dog's diet? A dog's diet affects all aspects of his body including the skin and coat. If your dog's diet contains adequate amounts of fatty acids, his coat and skin should appear healthy. Fatty acids in your dog's diet will prevent trouble with dry skin and dandruff, for example. A dull coat may indicate a need for supplements of fatty acids in your dog's diet. Studies indicate that essential fatty acids, called EFAs, contribute to healthy skin and coat, as well as general health. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, for instance, can play a critical role in your dog's overall well being. Do not assume that adding fatty acid supplements to your dog's diet is always a good idea. If your dog's coat is in good condition, adding more EFAs will not automatically improve health. The fatty acid supplements, such as omega 3 and 6, are only for dog's with diagnosed skin problems. Always consult your veterinarian before adding a supplement to your dog's diet. Your vet will be happy to discuss with you the best form of EFAs and the appropriate dose to add to your dog's diet. Fatty acids are not produced by your dog's body. For this reason, You must provide EFAs to your pet through your dog's diet. If your vet recommends additional supplements of fatty acids, you may want to ask about linseed or sunflower oil. Within as little as four weeks, you should notice an improvement in your dog's coat and skin. Watch the wonder of fatty acids at work in your dog's diet. By the time seven weeks have passed, you will notice a dramatic change in your pet's health. High levels of omega 3 fatty acids are thought to ward off some forms of cancer. Cardiovascular health and joint health will improve, as well, with higher levels of omega 3 in your dog's diet. Typically, omega 6 fatty acids are present in manufactured dog food at adequate levels. Supplementing omega 3 will help to improve the ratio and make the difference for your pet. Fish and flax seed are excellent sources of omega 3 fatty acids. Again, be cautious and ask your vet before supplementing. Some forms of fish may not be safe as part of your dog's diet. Supplementing your dog's diet may or may not be necessary. The only sure way to decide if your dog's diet needs extra essential fatty acids is to schedule an appointment with your vet to talk about your pet's health. Never medicate your dog without advice from a professional because your dog's diet must contain the proper balance of nutrients. Sources of EFAs include flaxseed, linseed, and sunflower oil. Higher doses of essential fatty acids can improve skin and coat issues within several weeks. Your dog's diet is the first step in providing your overall health and a happy life with your pet for years to come. How Your Dog's Diet Affects Outputs If you are a computer guru, you may remember the term GIGO. This term stands for Garbage In. Garbage Out. So, what does this have to do with your dog's diet? Well, your dog may be no walking, wagging, and barking computer, but he or she works in the same way. What food goes into your pet will eventually come out in the end. Your dog's diet will affect the outputs considerably. Other factors play a role such as illness, nerves, and the weather. You can tell a lot about the health of your hound by the outputs produced. As any responsible pet owner knows, cleaning up after your pet is not the most pleasant job, but it is a necessary one. Being choosy and selective about your dog's diet will make cleaning up after your pet much easier. When your dog is eating a diet high in fillers, your pet will show it. The excrement will be large in size and often runny and hard to pick up. You may notice when you give your pet leftovers from the table, he or she is really happy, but you aren't exactly smiling on the next trip around the block. The outputs of a pet eating an unhealthy diet is just plain messy, stinky, and large. Even treats such as rawhide bones can change your dog's stool. Your dog's diet consists of everything your pet eats from treats to mealtime. Monitor how treats affect your dog's outputs to determine how healthy the snack really is for your pet. If you choose to feed your dog a balanced diet that is high in quality, you will notice a particular difference in the outputs. Cleanup may not be placed on the top of your things to-do list, but it will be much easier and more tolerable. When the dog's diet is healthy and nutritious, you will have less mess in the yard or kennel. Dog handlers with service animals are educated about the importance of a healthy diet and outputs during training. It is important, for example, that a guide dog not have an accident while working. The public would not be highly tolerant of trouble in a restaurant or grocery store. Take a tip from trainers and keep your dog's diet healthy to avoid these messy situations. Consult your veterinarian to decide what type of diet is best for your dog. Look for a dry dog food that lists meat as the first ingredient. This will help to reduce the amount of fillers your pet will consume. Feeding your pet on a schedule is important. When looking at your dog's diet, do not simply focus on what you are feeding your pet, but also focus on when you feed your dog. If your dog's diet includes consistent mealtimes, you will be better able to predict your dog's potty schedule. This can play a major role in effective housebreaking technique. Helping your pet eat right is the first step to maintaining a healthy diet for your dog. Your dog's diet, when perfected, will keep things running smoothly. Minimize outputs and mess with nutritious, scheduled feeding. Beware of treats in your dog's diet. Knowing what goes into your pet will reduce the garbage coming out. Common questions about vaccinations Common questions about vaccinations are to be understood by the dog owners, as a priority. One of the common questions is whether the dog needs to be given vaccination on the first week of age or not. The dogs need not be vaccinated within five to six weeks of age. But, if they did not receive vaccinations, then the vaccination against the parvoviral infections used to kill viral vaccines and measles disease may be given. Another common question is whether dog is to be given bordetella disease vaccine and lyme disease vaccine. No, these vaccines are only optional. Can the parvoviral vaccine can be used in first week of life? No. This will interfere with maternal antibody levels. Can a pregnant animal be vaccinated? Yes. Two to three weeks earlier to pregnancy activity that is expected, the pregnant animal may be vaccinated against viral diseases. This helps to provide maternal antibodies to the young one to be given birth. Is there any need to give rabies vaccine to dogs? Yes. It is a must to go for the anti rabies vaccine for dogs. When this anti-rabies vaccine is given to the dogs, what precaution does one need to undertake in this regard? Rabies vaccine is given at age of thirteen to fifteen weeks of age and should to be repeated in fifteen months and then once in three years. It is important that the dog is given this vaccine. However, this depends on the risk area. Is there any need for canine distemper vaccination in case of dogs? Yes. There is a specific requirement in the case of dogs for the vaccination against the canine distemper. This disease is more prevalent in most of the countries. Is there any vaccination against leptospirosis and at what age, the dog is to be vaccinated? This is to be given at age of at six to eight weeks of age, again at tenth to twelfth weeks, and again at thirteenth to sixteenth weeks of age. Heart worm, fleas and other parasites Heart worm, fleas and other parasites in dogs need to be eliminated by following appropriate medications in them. Many products have come up in the commercial fields to protect the dogs from heart worms, fleas and other parasites like hook worms, whip worms, round worms, lice, ticks etc. Among the heart worm, fleas and other parasites, the fleas produce the hyper sensitive reactions in the affected animals. Hence, the animals infested with fleas start severely scratching of body. Many times, the scratching is so severe and the skin becomes more hyperemic and dermatitis occurs in the affected areas. Animal will not lie down or sleep comfortably due to the constant bites by the fleas. Hence, animal looks as if affected by some severe skin disease. If the animal is not properly attended for this tick bite problem, there will be often secondary bacterial invasions in these sites and there may even be a bad smell emanating from the skin areas. Close observation of the dog is highly essential to rule out the occurrence of fleas disturbing the animal to a greater extent. Similarly, the skin of the animal needs to be tested for the presence of ticks, lice etc. For this, the hair materials need to be separated and the close observation with patience is required for the proper diagnosis. In many incidences, if anemia is present, the blood protozoa need to be ruled out in addition to the hookworm problems. The clinical problems like anemia, loose motion, pot belly etc. might be recognized by the dog owners themselves and however, the dog needs to undergo the routine health related examination involving fecal examination, hematological examination and blood smear examination. Many commercial products have come up in the market, which are useful to deal with all these conditions by single dose. Drugs like ivermectin are highly useful and are available in both injection and oral form in addition to the solution form that can be applied on the skin. These drugs in dogs can lead to the prophylaxis of these conditions also. Why are regular check-ups important? Why are regular check-ups important? Every dog owner asks this type of question, often. If you failed to do the regular check-ups, then the dog may end up having some major diseases that you don't know about. Hence, you need to pay lot of money both to the veterinarians for consultancy and for the required drugs useful for the therapy of the clinical condition. One may not be able to find out the very commonly occurring clinical conditions in case of their dogs because of less experience with dog diseases or dog rearing. This is why check ups are important. For example, if the dog has potbelly, the condition may not look abnormal many times. But if the dog is subjected to the regular check-up, then the veterinarian immediately finds it out and gives the appropriate therapy. If not, the animal may experience diarrhea and the dehydration. If the dog has any signs of illness, then don't wait for the regular check-up. Instead, you need to approach the veterinarian immediately. Check ups if done in a regular manner will help to give vaccinations against canine distemper, parvovirus, corona virus, rabies virus, hepatitis virus, and more. Booster vaccinations will be carried out in such cases without any delay in the injections and this helps to improve the immunity level of the dog against such diseases in a remarkable degree. Regular check up is the essential one with proper stools examination. Hence, the deworming may be carried out with drugs like fenbendazole, albendazole, etc. Abnormalities like signs of pain may be ruled out during such examinations. If not, helminthiasis may affect the animal and diarrhea may occur in addition to the other types of digestive upsets and anemia. Regular examinations help to rule out the external parasitic conditions like lice or tick infestations. Dental problems are also found out during the regular check ups in reputed veterinary hospitals. Where to Find the Best Food for a Nutritious Dog Diet You want your furry friend to eat right. You are very aware of the numerous benefits of a healthy and nutritious dog diet, but where can you find the best food for your pet? So many excellent types of dog food are out on the market today. You can purchase bags or cans of dog food simply and conveniently from your local grocery or department store. Store chains are now beginning to offer varieties of dog food that are higher in quality and lower in cost. If you don't want to risk purchasing dog food from the grocery store, consider stores that sell feed for other animals. Companies such as TSC regularly deal with customers interested in excellent nutrition for their pets. They would undoubtedly be able to help you decide on a specific brand of food to suit the needs of your dog's diet. Some upscale dog foods are available at such stores that you may not find at your local Wal-Mart. Several companies use the internet as a marketplace to sell their organic and natural dog diets. Look online to locate a type of dog food that feels right to you. Some merchants will even deliver the dog food right to your door. Your dog's diet has never been more convenient. The internet has opened the door for pet owners to expand their choices when it comes to their dog's diet. Do not overlook the obvious. Your veterinarian can consult with you about the best types of dog diets. He or she may sell specific brands or varieties right from their office. Once you have decided on a specific diet for your dog, consider picking it up when you bring your pet in for a checkup or while picking up your monthly heartworm medication. A trusted vet would not offer you food that is not suitable for your dog's diet, so this may be a great place to start. If the vet recommends a particular type of diet for your dog, due to health reasons, your vet may be one of the only places to find the exact food your dog's diet requires. You may find the most nutritious dog diet fresh from the garden or your own kitchen. Some pet owners prefer to cook specifically for their dog. A dog's diet requires meat, vegetables, and grain. Carefully selected meats, grains, and vegetables can be prepared at home to ensure excellent nutrition for your pet. If you have green beans or carrots from your garden, consider adding these to your dog's diet. You know right where the food has come from and how it was prepared. A healthy dog diet may come from a butcher. If you choose to make your own raw diet at home, you will be able to find the quality meats for your dog's diet from the local butcher. Ground turkey or chicken breast fresh is always best. Regardless of what type of food you choose for your dog's diet, always consult the veterinarian before making any changes or alterations. Once you have decided on a specific diet for your dog, take advantage of the healthiest and most convenient method available to you. Cost of feeds The cost of dog feed is one factor that is most important in the case of feeding of dogs with different kinds of food items. Yes. This is true. The cost factor needs to be looked into in various perspectives during the preparation of the food items, required for the balanced feeding of dogs with proper vitamin and mineral supplementations in the food. Cost will not always matter much because the dog's value is being assessed in terms of companionship and the happiness derived from the dog to the dog owner. Though the cost of the food items is comparatively more, many dog owners don't mind much due to the increased benefits derived from their dogs in terms of protection, guiding, etc. Selection of ingredients for the home made food needs to be however based on the quality factor. Even when the quality is more, general persons may seek some cheaper items only. Recommended nutrient contents may be obtained from the national nutrient academies in all nations and this will provide guidelines. One can correlate the cost factor with items available in their own country. Generally, the commercial food items are expensive especially the ones that use the modern technologies of food preparation like oven-baking, sterilization of cans, air drying or freeze drying of contents etc. Canned items cost more than the dry food items. However, the cost of the items depends on what kind of food item to be used for the dogs. Food allergies need to be monitored during usage of different food items in case of dogs due to the cheaper cost of the items. Often the quality need not be compromised because of the cost factor. Most of the dog food items nowadays have mentioned their cost in the label itself. Hence, the dog owner need not have any problem in taking a decision on the purchase. Guidelines to Choose a Healthy Dog Diet for Your Pet Choosing a healthy dog diet can be confusing and difficult if you let it. The pretty packaging and marketing can blur our perception of a product. Your dog's diet is the most basic way to keep your pet healthy and happy for the years to come. It is essential that you find a diet that will provide essential nutrients to allow your pet to thrive rather than merely survive. Here are some simple guidelines to follow when you are selecting a food for your dog's diet. Know that every dog is different. A dog diet that is terrific for your neighbor's dog may not be exactly what your pet needs. The first step when considering your dog's diet, is to talk to your veterinarian. This trusted individual has your pet's interest at heart, just like you. The vet's recommendations can steer you in the right direction. Find a reputable brand of dog food to be the main component of your dog's diet. It is not impossible to stumble across a high-quality dog food that you have never heard of, but a well-known and prominent manufacturer provides an amount of safety and security about the decision to feed your dog a healthy diet. Recognized and reputable dog food manufacturers take the time to research the topic of animal nutrition. Allow your pet to benefit from the company's wealth of information rather than going it alone. Select a dog food that is age appropriate. If your dog is older and shows signs of aging, consider a dog diet that is specially formulated for senior dogs. Puppies have different nutritional needs than do adult dogs. Find a variety of food that meets your dog's needs. Even the breed and size of your pet can make a difference in the type of diet you should feed your pet. Diets formulated specifically for small dogs and large breeds exist. You may want to keep this in mind when selecting your dog's diet. Activity level and weight are other factors to consider when making the decision of what to feed your dog. If your dog is extremely active or overweight, you may need to pick a type of dog diet that accommodates such situations. When you decide on a specific diet for your dog, pay attention to the portion size. Obesity is a serious problem in pets. It can lead to hip troubles and take years off your pet's life. Table scraps are definitely out for a healthy diet. Your dog's diet should consist of a high-quality food specially designed to meet your pet's dietary needs. Begging is encouraged with table scraps and obesity is likely to result. Only supplement a high-quality diet when recommended by a veterinarian. Giving your pet too many supplements in the dog's diet can lead to a lower quality of health. Always consult your vet for advice on what to feed your dog. Your dog's diet will fuel his health, so choose your dog's diet wisely. Select a brand of food that is reputable and suited to your dog. Finding the right diet for your pet will promote good health and allow your dog to thrive. Signs of Ill health Signs of ill health are the most important signs of the health status in your dogs. For example, if the dog has continuous nasal discharge, it indicates the presence of nasal congestion and if the discharge is thick, most of the times, the dog may have pneumonia. If the dog vomits one or two times occasionally, this may not be taken as a serious sign of ill health but if the dog continues this vomiting, then this is something significant to be looked into. If the dog has continuous itching, then one needs to check up the dog first by closer observation and examination of skin by separating the hair material especially in case of long haired breeds. You may also come across a lot of ticks or lice on skin, which may look apparently normal at a distance. If the dog passes loose stool for one or two times, this need not be given more emphasis but if there is continuous passing of loose stool, then the dog is understood to suffer from bowel disorders. If the dog does not pass stool for two to three days, the digestive upsets needs to be ruled out carefully. Just patiently observe the dog's walking movements and rule out any abnormal movements in the dog. If the dog is limping, the animal may have foot lesions. Similarly, if the aged dog has reluctant walking and less feed intake along with repeated vomiting, then acute renal disorders like nephritis needs to be ruled out. If there is whiteness in eyes, suspect the corneal opacity that may occur in diseases like trypanasomosis. When the dog becomes anemic, the mucous membrane of the eyes becomes paler and in severe cases, this may have wall white color. If the dog bites chain and owners or others, look for behavior disorders and rabies needs to be ruled out. How often should my pet be examined? Most of the dog owners try to find this answer in a serious manner. Whatever the schedule we have for the examination of your pet animal, if there is any abnormality noticed in your animal, without delay, you need to subject the animal for a thorough clinical examination. It can be suggested that even before the purchase of a puppy, just consult a pet animal care specialist and try to understand about the schedules to be maintained for the examination of the animal. This will help a lot in solving many health related problems in the concerned animal. Though once in two or three months is the general schedule for the examination of the dog, as soon as the puppy is procured the dog needs to be taken to the veterinarian for a thorough examination. Hence, the health care measures related program will be obtained in time. Most of the time, the dog is to be taken to the veterinarian at fifth or sixth week of age because in this period only, the vaccinations against diseases will be systematically carried out. The period of vaccination in the first year will be continued up to the sixteenth week of age and the schedule needs to be maintained accordingly. However, if you have the pregnant dog, the dog need not be stressed by long distance based transportation for examination purposes. Hence, consult the veterinarian by phone and try to reduce the travel for the dog. However, the veterinary advice needs to be obtained in terms of health maintenance. If the dog has met with an accident either during travel or during routine movements, the animal needs to be taken to the pet hospital immediately. Though no disease is evident, it does not mean that the dog is healthy. There are occasions wherein the animal may look like a normal dog but may have some diseases, which can be found out during the routine health check ups. Hence, the owner has to decide on when to take the dog to the hospital depending on necessity. Vitamin and mineral supplements Vitamin and mineral supplements are the most important components in any dog's feeding. If there is a balance in the vitamin and mineral supplements, then the animal will have a healthy life and hence, the immunity is not compromised in an unwanted way. This simply means that there the dog will be more disease resistance against various diseases. Pet owners should know that vitamins A, D, E, and K are the fat-soluble vitamins and others are water-soluble vitamins. Vitamins like thiamine, pyridoxine and cyanocobalamin are important for the functions of nervous system. Deficiency of vitamin A leads to night blindness and skin lesions and deficiency of vitamin D leads to the softening and weakening of the bones. These problems are many a time encountered by the dog owners. Among these, vitamin A toxicities may occur if you feed them in excessive amounts, like vitamin D. Hence, give emphasis on this while you are using these vitamins in the dogs. Cod liver oil from selected fishes has more vitamin A in them and are universally good feed for dogs. All dogs may not need supplements of minerals or vitamins to live well for the moment, but it is important for their future. If they become sick or aged or very young without proper feeding, supplementations are required for the upkeep of health status in them. However, one has to follow the instructions of veterinarian in this regard. If the dogs are fed with fish in frozen conditions, then they may be suffering constantly from vitamin B1 deficiency and hence, such dogs need to be given specifically B1. Careless supplementations of minerals may lead to diseases and hence, veterinarians always need to be consulted on the supplementation of minerals or vitamins. Minerals like calcium, magnesium, zinc, manganese, iron, copper etc. are given more emphasis in addition to sodium and potassium. Zinc is related to skin health and potassium is related to the muscle health and calcium with phosphorus is related to the bone health. However, if you feed the dog with chicken, mutton or beef along with required vegetables, artificial supplementation of mineral or vitamin tablets may be highly reduced but supplements need to be thought of when you are not able to maintain a balanced nutrition as this happens with most of the dogs, due to multifaceted causes. Veterinary dental treatments Veterinary dental treatments are more important. If the dental structures are not being looked carefully, there are more chances for the development of periodontal diseases in dogs. Hence, the veterinary dental treatments need to be paid maximum importance during the life of your dogs. There are many advanced systems that deal with dental treatments that have come up in the market. Many systems are available with built in water spray systems, double filter systems, auto clavable clips, and more. Many veterinarians use high speed fiber optic hand pieces with push button turbines, two hand piece water jet systems, soundless water compressors and more. The diagnosis of a condition pertaining to the periodontal structure based diseases are more important before the treatment. Periodontal diseases are graded into minimal and moderate and severe diseases. Accordingly the therapy is carried out, it is impossible to check all teeth by basic oral examination in the dog patient. Hence, general anesthesia is required before the examination of the teeth inside structures. Surgical curettage is done in case of advanced periodontal diseases using flaps and the teeth extractions are also carried out using moderate force and more care is taken to avoid the continuous bleeding. Oral surgeries are undertaken after obtaining of the dental radio graphs in the dogs and by comparing the tissue damage with normal teeth structures. The concerned veterinarians assess the extent of damage in a systematic manner. The periodontal diseases are controlled by administration of broad-spectrum antibiotics in an effective manner. Along with the dental surgeries, the oral treatment is done with many products that are helpful to prevent the attachment of the tartar or plaque on the teeth. However, reputable products should be used in the veterinary practice and the dog owner's satisfaction is given more priority during the veterinary dental therapy. What is the Green Bean Dog Diet? For some time, people have tossed around the idea of the green bean diet for dogs. You may have heard of this and considered trying it. Let's look at the green bean dog diet and discuss some of the pros and cons. If you choose to feed your dog the green bean diet, you must know that you cannot exclusively feed your pet green beans. Only supplying your dog with this green vegetable will not be a healthy choice for your dog's diet. Pet owners will need to find a balance between dog food, for example, and green beans that will produce the desired results. The green bean dog diet involves standard kibble for your pet mixed with a portion of green beans. The green beans are a healthy way to keep your dog full between meals. For example, your lab may only need two cups of high-quality dog food per day to maintain a healthy weight, but he is always scrounging around and hungry. Adding some green beans to the food at meal time will help your dog's diet stay on track and keep your dog feeling full and happy. Should all dogs be eating the green bean diet? Not all dog's need to have green beans added to their meals. Typically, the green bean dog diet is recommended for dogs who need to lose weight. After the initial weight loss, many pet owners continue to follow the green bean dog diet to help maintain a healthy weight for their pet. Both dogs and owners are often pleased with the results of the green bean dog diet. Pet owners feel good about supporting the health of their dog. Also, it is comforting for us humans to see a sizable helping for our pet. Looking into the dog dish and seeing a few sparse kibbles totaling a half cup does not appear as generous as that same amount of kibble surrounded by a healthy helping of fancy cut green beans. It is rare that your dog will turn his or her nose up at the green beans. Your dog's diet is healthy and appreciated. Dogs feel fuller and will respond with a more pleasant attitude and less scrounging around in search of some grub. One negative factor to consider when changing your dog's diet over to the green bean diet, is the added fiber. Some dog's systems react to this, so monitor your pet's outputs. Begin adding the green beans slowly and gradually increase. Some pet owners find it beneficial to only add the green beans to the dog's diet at one specific time during the day to keep the dog's potty schedule in order. If you decide to turn your dog's diet over to the green bean dog diet, there are a few simple tips to keep in mine. You won't be feeding your dog several cans of green beans a day. Purchase a resealable lid to cover the open can of green beans for easier storage in the fridge between meals. Measure the amount of green beans in your dog's diet just as you would measure kibble or treats. If you notice the store has green beans on sale, by all means, purchase a few cans ahead and stock up. Although green beans are not particularly expensive, it never hurts to save some cash. Whenever possible, purchase canned green beans with no added salt. This is a healthy option for your dog's diet, typically at no additional cost to you. The green bean dog diet can have many advantages. Monitor your dog's intake to prevent unpredictable outputs. The green bean dog diet helps to properly lose and maintain weight while keeping you and your pet happy. Make a Natural Dog Diet at Home for Better Health Who knows what is really in that bag of kibble at the grocery store? You have turned over the package and read the ingredients, but still it seems baffling. What do all of those long, scientific words really mean? The only way to really know what your dog's diet consists of is by making it yourself at home. Is it difficult to make a natural diet from home for your dog? No, a little bit of time and knowledge will leave your dog's diet healthy and nourishing. And, the best part, you will know what your best friend is eating. Creating a healthy diet for your dog at home will allow you the opportunity to take charge of your pet's health. Many options are available for you when selecting the specific amount and ingredients for your dog's diet. Always talk to your veterinarian about what to feed your pet. Your vet will help you to decide what products and foods are best to avoid and include in your natural dog diet. Also, they can educate you about any supplements that may be a good addition to your dog's diet to maximize health potential. You may consider the raw diet for your pet. This dog diet consists of raw meat, vegetable juices, and grains. The philosophy behind this dog diet is to return to the diet nature intended. Getting your dog's diet back to the basics will help to encourage good health. An organic dog diet is easily achieved at home with the purchase of organic meats, vegetables, and grains. If you have access to home grown organic goods in your local area, this may be the best option for your pet. If you have the time and space, consider growing your own organic vegetables for use in your dog's diet. What better way to keep your dog's diet on track? So, you have decided to go natural? Good choice. Now that you have turned away from the processed food, what options are available for treats? You can make your own natural dog treats at home. Simply give your dog a baby carrot or piece of apple as a natural treat. Dogs love ice cubes as a snack. This will not alter his diet at all.. The dog's diet can include homemade treats such as frozen vegetable juice or dog biscuits made from organic ingredients. Do remember to subtract the amount of treats from the daily regimen at mealtime to keep the diet balanced properly. For instance, if the dog's diet typically includes five baby carrots a day, you may want to subtract this from the meal and use them throughout the day as treats. Take control over your pet's health by making your dog's diet at home. Avoid processed food that is not as healthy for your pet. Many natural diet options are out there. Speak to your vet about which natural dog diet is best for you and your pet. When the quality of your pet's health is important, a natural diet for your dog is the best way to go. Your Vet: The Perfect Resource to Educate You About Your Dog's Diet Whether you have recently been blessed with a new puppy in your home, or you are a seasoned dog handler, it is wise to speak with a veterinarian about the best diet for your dog. With so many ideas, diet plans, and dog food varieties on the market, how do you know where to start? Begin with your vet. A trusted veterinarian wants only what is best for your dog. Just like you, he or she wants to find and discover what is perfect for your dog's diet. Talk about all aspects of your dog's diet. Your veterinarian can advise you on the basics of a dog's diet. Often, your vet will recommend a dry dog food. Dry food as the main component of your dog's diet, will increase the likelihood of good dental health for your pet, but this varies depending on specifics. Treats are another area that you will want to discuss with the veterinarian. Do they encourage specific types of treats? What snacks are discouraged for your specific pet? Each animal is different and you and your vet know your dog better than anyone. Working together, you will find what aspects of your dog's diet work best, and what needs to be altered. Some breeds, for example, will often have trouble maintaining a healthy weight. For this reason, your vet may recommend a smaller portion for your dog's diet than the recommended amount on the side of a dog food bag. If your older pet has trouble chewing, specific types of dog food may be beneficial as part of your dog's diet. Your dog's diet plays a significant role in the health of your pet. Your vet can inform you about any supplements needed to boost your dog's outlook for a happy and healthy life. Glucosamine is one item that is recommended by most veterinarians to promote healthy joints. This is especially true for dog's of larger breeds. The next time you are in the vet's office is a great time to bring up your dog's diet. Your vet will be able to weigh your dog to see if weight is an issue. He or she can take a look at the overall health of your pet. For example, if your dog has a dull coat, your veterinarian may suggest a different type of dog food or to add an egg to your dog's diet. During the lifetime of your pet, your dog's diet may need to be changed to suit his or her needs. Puppies and older dogs may require additional amounts of protein or other vitamins and minerals. If your dog is bred, your vet may recommend other changes to your dog's diet. With all the hype about what is healthy for a dog's diet, do not decide to go at it alone and inadvertently choose a poor diet. Speak to the vet about your dog's diet and educate yourself on what is best for your beloved pet. A healthy diet is key to longevity. Both you and your vet want to see your dog live to be happy and healthy for many years, and providing a nutritious diet for your dog is one of the best ways to accomplish this goal. What happens during an examination? This question often looks so simple but holds more meanings in that. During the examination of your dog, first you need to prepare the dog first psychologically for a better-restrained status. For this, you need to take a leash and place the dog on table by the careful delivery of suitable command. When the dog is trying to avoid the thorough examination by the veterinarian, just try to distract the dog by simple scratching of your dog behind the ears, etc. Hence, the dog's attention is some what diverted from the examination procedures that are carried out often in a systematic manner. However, there are obedient dogs, which will remain calm during an examination. Such dogs need to be given some patting on the shoulder or the body and praises. Perhaps, many owners may try to provide some treats that are liked so much by the concerned dogs. However, it all depends on the trainings offered to the concerned dog earlier and the effective follow up procedures by the owner for the maintenance of such reflexes during the examination. Muzzles are required for some dogs if they behave in a different manner by objecting the examination procedures by the frequent movements of the body or trying to bite the veterinarian doing the examination of the dog. Hence, the owner needs to observe the dog closely during the examination to rule out any abnormal activity by the dog. Restraining activities in a proper manner during the clinical examination of the dog are of highly appreciable if they are successful with the concerned dogs. Such control will be of highly helpful for the effective examination of the patient by the concerned veterinarian in the pet clinic. If the dog gets more distracted during examination by means of restlessness, then one may even use the electronic equipments which will make some sound that are audible to the dogs' ear. Such things will be helpful in the proper distraction of the animal during the examination.
Your Dog's Diet: Canned Dog Food vs. Dry Kibble A dog's diet affects every aspect of their health and well being. You undoubtedly want only the very best for your furry friend. When it comes to choosing the best for your dog's diet, you have so many options available. It can be hard to determine which food will have the most positive effect on your dog's diet and health. Which is better, canned dog food or dry kibble? The debate between canned dog food and kibble has continued since the two varieties have been on the market. What are the advantages of canned dog food as the main component of your dog's diet? Is dry kibble superior to canned dog food? Possibly, it is simply personal preference between the two varieties. To help you decide, let's take a look at the advantages of each type of dog food as part of a healthy and balanced diet for your pet. To get the best advice, schedule a visit with the veterinarian to discuss your dog's diet. The two of you can talk about how each type of dog food will specifically relate to your pet. Canned dog food, as the main component of your dog's diet, has gotten a negative stigma over the years. Many pet owners feel that the cost of canned dog food is high and unappealing, especially for the larger breeds who require greater amounts of food daily. A significant advantage of canned dog food is the quality. Frequently, you will find that canned dog food offers large chunks of real meat for your pet. Fewer additives and fillers are found in most brands of canned dog food. Knowing the importance of high-quality ingredients, canned dog food certainly has its place in a healthy, balanced dog diet. Another advantage of canned dog food in your dog's diet is palatability. Dogs will commonly take to canned dog food quickly. This can be a true advantage when you are dealing with a picky eater. Dogs who have trouble with oral health and chewing will find the moist food easier to eat. If you note your dog is struggling to eat the kibble diet, then canned dog food may be just the solution to your dog's diet problems. Dry kibble also has advantages in a dog's diet. The dry kibble helps to keep your dog's teeth healthy by removing plaque and tartar. Excellent oral health for your pet can be easily maintained with dry kibble as the main component in your dog's diet. The moist dog food from cans do not provide the same benefit. Storage of the dry kibble does not require refrigeration after opening. This can make traveling with your pet easier and more convenient. Cost is yet another reason to consider dry kibble for your dog's diet. High-quality dry dog food is available to pet owners at a reasonable price. Whether you choose dry kibble or canned dog food, you will always want to talk over the issue with your veterinarian. Canned food is great for picky eaters and pet's with difficulty chewing. Canned food offers high quality ingredients for your dog's diet. Dry kibble is inexpensive and helps promote good oral health. Providing your pet with the best nutrition is the first step in caring for your pet. Why is a Dog's Diet Important? You truly love your dog. He really is man's best friend. Is there any doubt you want to keep your pet as healthy as possible? There are many ways to keep your dog happy and healthy. A nutritious diet for your dog is one of the best ways to positively influence the health and longevity of your pet. If you consider how unpleasant a person can be when he or she is hungry or malnourished, you will undoubtedly se the importance of healthy choices when selecting your dog's diet. You and your pet will not enjoy life at its fullest if your dog's diet is poor. Selecting a high-quality diet for your dog will increase the likelihood of a long and happy life for your pet. A healthy choice for your dog's diet will include the basic vitamins and minerals essential for your dog's health. Also, your dog's diet should include some extra nutritional supplements. Speak with your vet about your dog's diet. They will be willing to help you make informed and educated decisions about your dog's diet. Ask about glucosamine or fish oils to combat health issues such as arthritis and dandruff. Your dog's diet will affect your pet's energy level. If the dog's diet is lacking, your pet may be sluggish or unable to rest contently. If your pet requires extra nutrition to run or walk considerable distances, a healthy diet is crucial. Your dog's diet affects the amount and size of outputs. When your pet eats a healthy diet with few fillers, the excrement is less. This is important to lessen the cleanup of the kennel or yard. Ask any handler who picks up after their dog and learn the importance of your dog's diet. Obesity is not just a problem for people. Weight is also a concern for your pet. Your dog's diet plays an important role in maintaining a healthy weight for your pet. Extra treats can seem like a simple luxury, but they can create serious health problems when given to your pet too frequently. Finding the best diet for your dog can even help to reduce reactions to food allergies. Decreasing allergy troubles will make your dog feel so much better. Sometimes a simple change in the type of dog food can make such a difference to your pet. Your dog's diet affects every aspect of your dog's health.. Your pet's coat will look and feel better with a healthy diet. Good nutrition and adequate grooming will keep your pet's coat looking shiny and magnificent. The type of dog food you select for your dog's diet can even make a difference with your pet's teeth. Choosing a dry dog food can help to sharpen and polish your dog's teeth. Avoiding canned food when possible will help to reduce tartar and plaque. As you can see, a dog's diet influences everything from outputs to teeth. Even your dog's energy level and attitude is affected by the dog's diet. Selecting your dog's diet wisely and consulting your veterinarian is a fabulous way to improve the quality of your pet's life. Surgical neutering of the male dog Surgical neutering of the male dog is important in helping the dog owners to control the male dog's aggressive behavior. Yes. By doing the surgical neutering, it becomes possible to control the dog's restlessness, which might have caused so much agony for the owner and hence, neutering corrects such activity to the benefit of the dog owner. When the dog is in puppy stage, the dog may be subjected to the surgical neutering technique. Hence, the hormonal impact is highly minimized in such male dogs. The surgical neutering of the male dog helps to prevent the incidences of prostate gland diseases. Generally, in case of male dogs, the prostate enlargement is more common. In canine patients undergone the surgical neutering, the incidences of such prostate enlargement are totally minimized. Sometimes, the adult male dog has more difficulties during defecation. However, one has to rule out the feed borne constipation like lack of fibers etc. before resorting to the fixation of prostate enlargement as a cause for this. Constipation is mainly due to the increased size of the prostate gland. Neutering makes shrinkage of the prostate gland. In surgical neutering, the incision is placed in front of the scrotum and the testicles are removed in a surgical manner using aseptic techniques. The wound need not be closed except the tying up of the cord after cutting of the testicle. However, in two to three days time, as a routine tissue reaction, some swelling may occur in the scrotum. However, once you administer the antibiotic that has a broader spectrum of activities, the condition gets recovered in a satisfactory condition. Septic shock may occur if the surgical site gets infected with some microbial infections and in these cases, the wound needs a thorough dressing procedure and the patient needs to be continuously monitored in a clinical environment. Take note that local animal organizations perform the surgical neutering when the stray male dogs are captured by them. When to Stop Your Dog's Diet There are times when you should stop your dog's diet immediately. Although these situations occur rarely, it is important to know when and how to cease your dog's diet. Typically, pet owners are advised to make changes to a dog's diet gradually. Consistency is frequently the rule of thumb when it comes to your dog's diet. Sudden changes to your dog's diet often cause your pet stress and trouble, but at times, stopping your dog's diet immediately is necessary. If your pet will be having a medical procedure performed that involves the use of anesthesia, your vet may recommend that you stop feeding your pet for a period of time before the procedure. As always, follow the advice of your trusted vet. He or she knows the dangers to your pet regarding surgery with a full stomach. If you expect sudden changes and stress in your dog's life, such as a move to a new location, your pet may refuse to eat his typical diet. During the first day with a guide dog in training, trainers recommend to skip a meal to avoid stomach upset during this extreme time of stress for the dog. If you have concerns about stopping your dog's diet due to stress and illness, consult your vet for advice. In light of recent pet food recalls, you will want to be prepared should you need to stop your dog's diet suddenly for safety reasons. In some cases, your dog may have already shown signs of upset or disinterest in contaminated food, but if not, take no chances with the health of your pet in the event of a recall. If your type of dog food has been recalled, stop feeding it as part of your dog's diet immediately. If possible, locate a new bag or can of the same variety of dog food that is safe for your pet. This will reduce any disruption to your dog's diet and routine. If you are uncomfortable or unable to locate dog food that is safe in the same variety, you may want to cook a meal for your pet to substitute as your regular dog diet until you can. At this time, you simply may just have to switch varieties or brands of dog food. As mentioned before, a sudden switch in your dog's diet is not typically recommended, but in the interest of your dog's health, it may be necessary. Should this be the case, try to locate another type of dog food that is similar to your dog's diet in quality. This will help to reduce any digestive issues. Your vet will best be able to advise you, but expect some digestive trouble such as gas or diarrhea during a sudden diet change. Of course, you will want to keep an eye on this situation, but it is not necessarily a sign of poor quality food. Your dog's digestive tract is not used to significant changes, so it will take a period of time to adjust to the new diet. A sudden switch or cease of your dog's diet is not typically recommended as the way to go, but in some instances, it is for the best. Always talk to your vet about any change to your dog's diet and follow the advice. Your dog's safety is the utmost concern. When to Change Your Dog's Diet It is important to you to keep your pet happy and healthy. How do you know when it is time to change your dog's diet? Who can you talk to in order to learn more about your dog's diet and what needs to be altered? It may seem that your dog is doing just dandy on whatever bag or can of dog food flops into your cart at the grocery store, but how do you know for sure that your dog's diet is right on track? Take note of some simple things about your dog. The dog's diet affects all aspects of life, so observe your dog before jumping to conclusions. Here are some questions to ask yourself when trying to decide if your dog's diet needs a change. How does my dog act? Is your pet always scrounging around the house for crumbs and scraps? Can your pet rest comfortably following a meal? A dog who is full and content will be less likely to scavenge and will be able to take a nap after a good meal. Are your pets outputs runny, thin, or firm? A dog's diet will dramatically affect their outputs. You will be able to tell if your dog's diet is appropriate for them by monitoring potty stops. If your pet is routinely feeling under the weather or becoming ill, you may want to consider what is in the dog dish. The dog's diet is what feeds the immune system and keeps your pet feeling healthy. A diet lacking appropriate vitamins and nutrition will not keep your pet functioning at his best. As your pet grows and matures, you may need to change your dog's diet. A puppy has different health requirements in regards to diet than does an adult dog. Older dogs may require senior diets to help combat weight or medical issues. How is your pet's energy level? Does your dog seem lazy or high strung? The dog's diet may be influencing this fact. If your dog and you take walks for several miles, you may need to adjust the dog's diet to suit the increased level of activity. Whether you keep your pet inside or out may also make a difference in your dog's diet. Pets staying outside in the winter may need extra food and more calories to stay warm during the cold winter months. If you are ever in doubt about what type of diet is right for your dog, talk to a professional. Your veterinarian should always be advised of any medical or health concerns. He or she will be glad to discuss with you various dog diets and their specific advantages and disadvantages. Nobody knows your dog better than you and your vet. Work together to determine if your dog is showing signs that his diet needs a change. Many factors can influence the need to change your dog's diet. Health concerns, age, and even the weather can be cause for your dog's diet to require alteration. Speak to your vet about the best diet for your pet. Good observation and education will help you to decide if your dog's diet is right on track. Benefits of Fiber in Your Dog's Diet We know the benefits of fiber in our own diet, but is their any benefits of fiber in a dog's diet? Fiber was consider filler and bulk in year's past, but today, the nutritional value of fiber in the dog's diet is finally realized. What exactly is fiber? It is a part of carbohydrates. Fiber is not highly digestible by the body. Your dog's diet can benefit from fiber in appropriate amounts. Just like humans, too much fiber in a diet can have negative effects on the digestive system. It is always important to monitor your dog's diet to maintain a healthy level of fiber to suit your pet's needs. Talk to your veterinarian about the benefits of fiber in your dog's diet. Obedience is prevalent in both humans and pets. Too often, pet's become overweight. Fiber in your dog's diet is a terrific way to help your pet lose excess weight. Maintaining a healthy weight is crucial to the longevity and quality of your dog's life. We know that fiber cannot accomplish weight loss on its own, but it can truly make a difference. Fiber helps to keep your dog feeling full and content without large amounts of calories. The pets who achieve the desired weight goal may need a little extra fiber in the dog's diet to maintain the desired weight. Combining fiber with strict portion control, you will be able to create a dog diet that is healthy and satisfying for your pet. Again, similar to humans, constipation does occur in pets. Your dog's diet should contain fiber to help prevent this medical condition from occurring. As your dog ages, his or her diet should contain elevated levels of fiber. Senior dogs tend to deal with issues of constipation more frequently than their younger counterparts. For this reason, you will note higher fiber content in senior dog diets. How does fiber help keep things moving? Fiber absorbs water. With the absorption of water in the fiber, the contents in the intestine have more bulk. This is what causes the movement along the intestinal tract. The passage time through the bowel becomes more normalized and regular. Healthy amounts of fiber in your dog's diet will contribute to fecal consistency. You will know when your pet is getting the proper amount of fiber when your dog relieves himself regularly. Too much fiber in your dog's diet will result in loose and messy stools. Some studies indicate that a slight increase in fiber can assist in the management of diabetes mellitus. The fiber helps to control blood sugar levels by slowing the absorption of sugar from the intestine. Take note that excessive amounts of fiber can have negative affects on your dog's health. For this reason, it is important to buy high-quality dog food from reputable companies to ensure a healthy diet for your dog. Watch for these sources of fiber in your dog's diet. Beet pulp, soybean hulls, rice bran, apple and tomato pomace, and peanut hulls. Grain such as oats and rice are also examples of indigestible fiber. Fiber does have benefits in your dog's diet when used in moderation. Talk to your vet about the best amount of fiber for your pet. How often should I feed my dog? This often becomes an important question asked by many dog lovers and dog owners. If it is a puppy within age of the first six weeks, the puppies need to be given milk at the rate of five to seven times per day. The puppy will make some sound if it wants to feed in general. However, the feeding frequency may be reduced when the dog becomes six to eight weeks old. By the time the dog assumes the age of four weeks, it may start taking of some solid food. Hence, mix the solid food with water in majority and feed your puppy once or twice in the beginning and if the dog develops some diarrhea, then delay the feeding. Most of the times, it is due to trial and error but taking some basic steps in feeding, so you need to watch out. The feeding frequency may be changed to two to three times after the assumption of age of eight weeks. However, if the dog is seen hungry craving for food, then provide food once than the estimated numbers. This varies with different breeds of dogs. However, avoid feeding too many times in this age group of dogs. Around three months to six months of age, the puppy will be teething. Hence, restrict the feeding to two times only but the balanced type of nutrition needs to be provided to the dogs of this age group to avoid the deficiency based symptoms in them. From six months to one year, try using puppy food that is available commercially. However, from first year onwards, the adult food may be given gradually. However, when the dog becomes an elder dog, restrict the frequency of feeding since the movements of such adult dogs are highly reduced due to multiple reasons. However, the pregnant animal may be fed an extra time depending on the willingness of the animal and restrict the quantity of the food but without compromising on the quality of food. THE MOST INTELLIGENT POODLE. The Poodle is commonly acknowledged to be the most wisely intelligent of all members of the canine race. There is a general belief that he is a fop, whose time is largely occupied in personal embellishment, and that he requires a great deal of individual attention in the matter of his toilet. It may be true that to keep him in exhibition order and perfect cleanliness his owner has need to devote more consideration to him than is necessary in the case of many breeds; but in other respects he gives very little trouble, and all who are attached to him are consistent in their opinion that there is no dog so intensely interesting and responsive as a companion. His qualities of mind and his acute powers of reasoning are indeed so great that there is something almost human in his attractiveness and his devotion. His aptitude in learning is never denied, and many are the stories told of his marvellous talent and versatility. Not merely as a showman's dog has he distinguished himself. He is something more than a mountebank of the booths, trained to walk the tight rope and stand on his head. He is an adept at performing tricks, but it is his alertness of brain that places him apart from other animals. The profuse and long coat of this dog has the peculiarity that if not kept constantly brushed out it twists up into little cords which increase in length as the new hair grows and clings about it. The unshed old hair and the new growth entwined together thus become distinct rope-like cords. Eventually, if these cords are not cut short, or accidentally torn off, they drag along the ground, and so prevent the poor animal from moving with any degree of comfort or freedom. Corded Poodles are very showy, and from the remarkable appearance of the coat, attract a great deal of public attention when exhibited at shows; but they have lost popularity among most fanciers, and have become few in number owing to the obvious fact that it is impossible to make pets of them or keep them in the house. The reason of this is that the coat must, from time to time, be oiled in order to keep the cords supple and prevent them from snapping, and, of course, as their coats cannot be brushed, the only way of keeping the dog clean is to wash him, which with a corded Poodle is a lengthy and laborious process. Further, the coat takes hours to dry, and unless the newly washed dog be kept in a warm room he is very liable to catch cold. The result is, that the coats of corded Poodles are almost invariably dirty, and somewhat smelly. Poodle's General appearance --------------------------- Head: Long, straight, and fine, the skull not broad, with a slight peak at the back. Muzzle: Long (but not snipy) and strong not full in cheek; teeth white, strong, and level; gums black, lips black and not showing lippiness. Eyes: Almond shaped, very dark, full of fire and intelligence. Nose: Black and sharp. Ears: The leather long and wide, low set on, hanging close to the face. Neck: Well proportioned and strong, to admit of the head being carried high and with dignity. Feet: Rather small, and of good shape, the toes well arched, pads thick and hard. Legs: Fore-legs set straight from shoulder, with plenty of bone and muscle. Hind-legs: Very muscular and well bent, with the hocks well let down. Tail: Set on rather high, well carried, never curled or carried over back. Coat: Very profuse, and of good hard texture; if corded, hanging in tight, even cords; if non-corded, very thick and strong, of even length, the curls close and thick, without knots or cords. The importance of the physical examination The importance of the physical examination need not be underestimated in case of dogs. Simple but systematic physical examination techniques may diagnose most of the disorders in dogs and hence, without physical examination of the dog, one should not resort to knowing the status of your dog's health. Simply observe the dog with scratching. Catch the dog and simply separate the hair material from the itching site. To the surprise you may come across a big wound in the scratched site. The wound might be the main reason for the scratching of the dog at that site. However, one has to rule out the occurrence of wound by severe itching itself. Many times, when the scratching dog is examined physically, one can come across plenty of lice infestation or tick problem in the skin and coat. The parasitic condition might not be diagnosed at all if one has not carried out the physical examination. Similarly, the dog may reveal the signs of pain when the physical examination is carried out by deep palpation technique. The dog show signs of pain when the dog is examined at the stomach or the back regions. Even if it is possible that by pressure based palpation, one can detect the acute renal disorders in the affected dogs turn to the examined site at the region of kidney or at the back region. The dog affected by the Cystitis with severe retention of urine is often diagnosed by mere physical examination. The filled bladder together with signs of pain during the examination at the site of urinary bladder indicates that the animal is affected by Cystitis. Auscultation of the heart in both right and left sides helps to rule out the abnormal heart sounds and the pulmonary area based auscultation reveals the respiratory system disorder like pneumonia. Heart worm prevention Beef flavored chunks are available in addition to the beef flavored tablets or solutions that can be given orally to the dogs as a measure against the incidence of heart worms. Avoid mosquito bites by providing proper mosquito-proof shelter facilities to the dogs. Just plan whether there is any need to go for the heart worm prevention though out the year or only in some months of the year. For example, in case of some countries, the mosquitoes may be dormant in most of the colder months. However, in some countries, this is not a position. Many a times, medications are available for oral administration to prevent heart worms along with hookworms etc. Such oral medications need to be taken as per the instructions. However, be cautious about the occurrence of any adverse drug reactions in the dog given with such prophylactic therapy. Adverse event reports need to be sent if you come across any sorts of adverse drug reactions in your dog during the preventive treatment. Soft beef flavored tablets are highly preferred by the pet animals as the preventive measure against heart worms. The pet owner needs to consult a veterinarian if the dose for the prophylaxis of heart worm is missed for few months. In such occasions, the pet animal needs to undergo the heart worm test. Heartgard, sentinel, interceptor, revolution, etc. are available in the commercial fields as drugs for the preventive measure. Avoid water stagnation around the dog shelter and the bushes around the area that facilitate mosquito breeding. This test needs to be carried out in consultation with a veterinarian who is specialized in the pet animal health care and medicine. As a preventive measure for the heart worms, the dogs need to be tested for the evidence of these worms at an age of six months. Real beef chew able tablets are available containing medical agent like ivermectin. Clipping a dog Many dog owners generally think of clipping as only a mechanical activity. Few understand that clipping a dog is an art. Clipping a coat or nail needs to be carried out in a careful manner to avoid the injuries to the skin or nail. Clipping of the coat is to be taken care of as per the breed characteristics. If the coat is not properly clipped, this may lead to the dust accumulation in the coat and the animal may start showing signs of skin diseases. This is true especially when the grooming activities are not done in a proper manner. Clipping of coat helps to get rid of the parasitic burden to a greater extent and also, the clipping of your dog is of more useful to expose on the type of parasitic problem that the dog is likely to suffer. Many pet health parlors are available wherein the clipping of dog will be carried out in a more systematic manner. Always make use of a sharp clipper and in the winter regions, avoid the close clipping. This is due to the fact that the closer clipping in the winter seasons may expose the dog to the environmental stresses like the cold climate. Hence, the dog may become more vulnerable to the frostbite. Avoid the close clipping of coat or nail because this may cause injury to the underlying tissues and may cause bleeding in the concerned animal. Many pet owners need to avoid any clipping activity when the animal is not in healthy status. Clipping instruments are available to a greater extent in many pet shops. Avoid the blunt instruments because they may not clip well and hence, repetition is required often. Always use modern equipments for clipping activities. Understanding ingredients Understanding the ingredients of your dog's food items is a must for the dog lovers or dog owners. Whenever you feed the dog with different kinds of food items, you should always read the label and understand the contents about the dog feed types that are being used in such commercial preparations. You should understand the ingredients while buying food for your dog and also know what to look for. Feed items include dry and fresh food. The fresh dog food that is prepared in homes generally consists of ingredients like freshly cut chicken pieces in addition to the cranberry juices, blue-green algae, etc. If you come across any different kinds of preservatives and if the dog develops all of a sudden signs pertaining to the food allergy, suspect the unwanted ingredient in the feed items given. Similarly, understand about the moisture status. If the food item is having more moisture, then the dog may prefer this as well. Beet pulp, pasta, Soy bean oil, wheat middlings, calcium carbonate, magnesium oxide, copper sulphate, iron sulphate, zinc oxide, choline chloride, etc. are often the ingredients in case of vegetarian based diet items offered to the pet animals like dogs. Raw egg, chicken, beef, mutton, fish, quail etc. are often the preferred ingredients in case of dog diets that are prepared on the basis of the non-vegetarian items. Taurine is one of the essential ingredients for the dog's nutrition. Like wise, in the case of dogs feed with frozen fish items, the vitamin called thiamine needs to be supplemented as an ingredient. Many premium type of dog food preparations contain essential fatty acids, carbohydrates with adequate fiber contents, vitamins like A, D, E and B complex vitamins. Furthermore, minerals like zinc, is an essential ingredient for skin health status and calcium, which is an essential ingredient for bone growth, tonicity of muscles. They should be enriched in these food items. However, the cost of those food preparations are comparatively more expensive than the food preparations with general ingredients. Though it may be better for your dog's health. How to administer medicine Most of the times, the dogs are so intelligent to find out the drug mixed water or food materials offered to them by the dog owners. Hence, often it becomes a headache for the dog owners to give medicines to their dogs. To the possible extent, the animal need not be forced for taking of the drug. If the medicine is to be given by mouth, first decide whether it is better to give it along with water or food. Many times, the medicines are mixed with food materials and are kept in concealed position by proper mixing of the medicine with the food materials. Before administering the medicine, just delay the feeding time in the particular dog. Hence, the dog may be hungry to some extent. At that time, give little quantity of normal food without medicine and the dog may eat it well without any suspicion and now provide the medicine mixed food and the dog may voluntarily eat it most of the times. If the dog resists, first restraint the dog well and open the mouth. Place the tablet behind the fang teeth and almost behind the bulb of the tongue. However, take care that the medicine what you are administering in the dog should not enter directly into the respiratory organ like lungs. If so, the dog will experience many bouts like activities and may end up in aspiration pneumonia with severe nasal discharge and panting like activities. In puppies, just swab the medicine around the upper lip. The puppy will lick automatically the drug by tongue. Hence, the administration becomes perfect in such cases. If the medicine is in liquid form, don't raise the head of dog too much and place medicine by a syringe. Just by using a dropper, fill the medicine in the lip pocket. The continuous rubbing at the throat side may stimulate the swallowing. Making the animal thirsty and then offering of medicine mixed water may many times help the intake of the medicine. Boredom and variety Boredom and variety are always inter connected in case of dog misbehaving. Yes. This is true. Many a times, boredom can be managed with variety of materials that will distract the animals to a greater extent. Hence, the dog may not do the abnormal or unwanted activity arising out of the boredom experienced by it. Boredom experienced dogs may have different types of behavioral patterns. For example, some dogs will be seen barking continuously and some may be engaged always in some digging activities. There are many ways to get your dog out of its boredom activities. Many toys are available which simulated duck, dog, rodent etc. These may be kept inside the crate and in particular, puppies love these items. A buster cube with multiple treats may be placed in the dog's shelter and the animal soon understands on how to roll the buster cube to get the treats it prefers. A Buster Cube is an ingenious toy use for simulating and activating your dog during play and feed time. Instead of placing the food monotonously in one place, change the place of feeding suddenly. Such actions will be helpful for removing the boredom like activity in your dog. Activities pertaining to boredom need to be redefined well by the dog owners. This will help them to a greater extent to drive away the unwanted behavior patterns in their pet dogs. For example, some dogs may often have destructive biting characters and will be seen biting chair, cloth, mats, and everything that can see. After ruling out the teething problem if it is a puppy, provide it with some large sized balls, mineral mixture based bone materials, etc. Such variety of materials help to reduce the boredom related activities. Home dental care Home dental care is to be given more emphasis nowadays because of the fact that the dental diseases are emerging in the case of pet animals like dogs to a greater extent. Though you are giving home dental care, if you suspect on the extension of the dental diseases, then immediately approach the veterinarian for intervention. Try to provide bone materials without very sharp points to the dogs and they may love to chew them and then swallow the bitten products. Such activities help them to go for the development of strong teeth structures in a natural manner. Mind that the breeds of dogs like Pekingese, etc. are more prone for the development of teeth diseases because the teeth are closely crowned in the oral cavity be to the small size of the these dogs. Hence, these dogs need to be checked up for the excessive plaque formation in the home itself. Recreational raw beef bones are wonderful materials to keep the teeth structures of your dog clean and free from formation of plaque with build up of bacterial organisms. Teeth brushes are available for use with care in case of dogs and one has to be careful during the usage of these brushes in dogs. Teeth brushes are to be used with special kinds of pastes recommended by the veterinarians for home use in case of dogs. Specially prepared food materials are available in the pet shops to remove the tartar and the plaque materials from the teeth structures. Dry dog food and toys that are specially made to add strength to the teeth structures are often used at home for better teeth cleaning. The plaque materials are intermittently to be removed at home to avoid any occurrence of the periodontal diseases, which are more common among the dogs. Dental wipes are available in the pet shops and they may be used carefully in the home. This helps to remove more plaque and the tartar like materials that are loosely attached. Importance of a Feeding Schedule in Your Dog's Diet What your dog's diet consists of is very important. Your dog's overall health and well being is fueled by excellent food and resources. Did you know that your dog's diet should be following a feeding schedule? Just as important as what your dog eats, is when you feed your dog. Similar to humans, your dog needs to eat regularly. Nutritious meals and snacks should be monitored as part of your dog's diet. Spacing out mealtimes and snacks or treats on a feeding schedule is a good idea. Depending on your dog's age and health, you will want to devise a feeding schedule that supports your dog's diet and nutritional needs. Adult dogs may only need to eat at one time during the day, but two mealtimes are preferred. Senior dogs rarely need to vary from the typical adult dog feeding schedule, although the dog's dietary needs change over time. Puppies require more mealtimes throughout the course of the day. Nursing pups should be permitted to nurse on demand. As you alter your puppy dog's diet from milk to dog food, you will need to offer food four or five times per day. Once the puppy has become weaned and used to the new diet, you may reduce the feeding times to three occasions during the day. Your dog's diet should be presented to your pet at regular times during the day. The specific time to present your dog's diet is solely up to you, but be certain to establish a schedule. Avoid dramatically varying your pet's feeding times. For example, if you feed your adult dog before work at about 6:00 AM and then again at 6:00 PM, try to stick with this schedule throughout the week. Do not be surprised if your dog starts getting antsy at 5:45 in the morning in anticipation of breakfast. Your dog's diet is important to him and he is anxiously awaiting its arrival. Even the treats you hand out as part of your dog's diet will become part of your dog's daily routine. If your dog knows that every morning just before your lunch, you offer a chew bone, he or she will await the daily ritual. Establishing a feeding schedule helps to keep your dog's diet on track. It is easy to get in the habit of feeding your dog regularly. Plus, scheduled feeding times will help to predict your dog's elimination schedule. When you are potty training a puppy or housebreaking an adult, it can be helpful to have an idea of when your dog needs to go out. Maintaining a healthy diet and feeding schedule will make your job much easier. This is also very useful when traveling with your pet. If you know to expect your dog's elimination schedule, you will be able to plan appropriate potty stops. In addition, you will know if your dog is feeling stress by changes to his schedule. Try to maintain normalcy and routine as much as possible. Probably when you think of your dog's diet, you consider what food he consumes, but remember when you present your dog's diet is just as important. A dog will come to expect his daily feeding schedule and routine. The Raw Dog Diet Have you ever wondered why dog food comes in this huge bag filled with tiny kibbles of compressed unknown ingredients? Much of what goes into dog food is not high-quality in nature. Blood meal, bone meal, and fat frequently come from animal carcasses containing potentially harmful drugs or disease. Is it time to consider something better for your dog's diet? Before marketing and advertisers took over the world of big business, what did dog's eat? We take a look at how dog's in the wild gain adequate nutrition. A wolf, for example, survives from a kill. The contents of the animals stomach are eaten first. Doing this, the wolf takes in grains and vegetables, as well as, enzymes needed for good nutrition. Next, the wolf devours the meat and some bones. Protein and calcium have now been added to the diet. This natural diet in the wilderness has been effective in maintaining quality health over the years. Unlike the domesticated dogs of today, such animals generally have excellent immune systems. When your dog's diet consists primarily of unhealthy animals, can you not assume that your dog will become unhealthy, as well? Today, veterinarians have seen more health problems with dogs than ever before. The natural raw diet feeds the immune system of your pet. Your dog's diet will contain natural foods that provide the body what it needs to repair itself and perform at its best. The raw diet is prepared one time a day. It is not complicated and well worth the time and effort to ensure the excellent health of your dog. Always consult your vet before altering your dog's diet. The raw dog diet has helped many dog's combat health issues such as arthritis, skin problems, and weight trouble. Ingredients of the raw diet include meat, veggies, and grains. Approximately half of the diet is meat. Vegetables, fruit, and grain cover the rest. When preparing the dog's diet, feed the dog about the same amount of the raw dog diet as you would kibble. This is a good starting point. From here, you can adjust the diet as necessary to meet your dog's specific needs. Contact a local butcher to purchase ground turkey, for example. Each day prepare a bowl of 50% raw ground Turkey with some wet oats. Juice some vegetables such as carrots and swiss chard and add the juice to the mix. Juicing the vegetables helps to digest the enzymes for your pet. This is similar to the wolf consuming the contents from a stomach. Your dog's diet will need a variety of different vegetables daily to maximize the potential for best vitamins and nutrients. Carrots should always be the base and alter other veggies daily. The carrots will regularly supply potassium, calcium, vitamin A, B, C, D, and E. Greens offer vitamin A, C, and chlorophyll. Apples are good for vitamin C. Certain veggies have healing properties. Kale, for instance, helps to remedy digestive disorders. Watercress and mustard greens help to cleanse the intestines. Parsley helps the metabolism and thyroid. Celery has numerous advantages. It helps with chemical imbalances, blood flow, and is a natural diuretic. Beets are good for the blood. They offer copper and manganese. Some foods to avoid include broccoli, cabbage, and turnips. These create intestinal gas. Cucumbers, onions, and potatoes do not digest well in a dog's diet. Flaxseed is a fabulous addition to the raw diet to encourage healthy joints and coat. The omega 6 and 3 fatty acids help with such conditions. The raw diet for your dog can combat several health issues. The natural diet allows your dog to eat what nature intended. You know what foods are in your dog's diet. The raw diet is high in quality and healthy for your pet. The Proper Way to Switch Your Dog's Diet Over the course of your dog's lifetime, there may be several occasions when you need to switch your dog's diet. If is important to know the proper method to change your dog's diet to ease your pet through the transition. Many reasons exist that may cause you to feel the need to switch your dog's diet. A puppy, for example, must change from milk during nursing to dog food. Your adult dog may need to transition to a dog food diet specifically designed for senior dogs. Health reasons may be yet another cause for a switch. After consulting with your vet about the change to your dog's diet, you will want to consider all of your options. Upon making the final decision, you will want to make the change gradually and over time. Do not stop feeding one type of diet on Sunday evening and begin a completely new regimen on Monday morning. Such a drastic change will undoubtedly create some serious results. Switching your dog's diet too quickly can result in your dog having an upset stomach. Diarrhea is likely to result. The proper way to switch your dog's diet takes several days. Over the course of two weeks, gradually reduce the amount of the original diet and slowly increase the food for the new diet. For example, if you typically feed your pet a diet of 3 and 1/2 cups of kibble per day, you will only want to change the diet at the rate of 1/4 cup each day. Keep in mind if you feed your dog's diet twice daily, divide the amount in half at each feeding. Day 1 of the switch you would feed your dog 3 and 1/4 cup of the original kibble and 1/4 cup of the new dog diet. This total amount should be portioned between the number of meals during the day. Day 2 you would feed 3 cups of the original diet and 1/2 cup of the new diet. On day number 14, your dog's diet will have been completely changed over. This gradual process may seem slow at first, but be assured, it is for the best. A dog's diet is not like a human's diet. People vary their diet on a daily basis. Sometimes we stir things up from meal to meal. Your dog's diet is best when it is consistent. Do not change brands or feeding methods frequently. Once you find a dog diet that works well to promote the health of your pet, it is best to stick with it. In fact, you should allow several weeks, and preferably months, on a new diet before assessing the results. This is true unless otherwise directed by your vet. Some instances may arise when this is not a plausible plan. Your vet can best educate you on when and why to switch your dog's diet. Unless otherwise directed, proper method for changing your dog's diet takes time. The gradual change will reduce the stress and change to your dog's system and digestive tract. Whenever a diet is working well for your dog, it is best to leave your dog's diet alone. Consistency is helpful to maintain your dog's ultimate health potential. Nursing a sick dog Nursing a sick dog is one of the vital measures that a dog owner needs to understand. Similarly, when a dog becomes sick, the dog is in need of more care and affection based activities by the dog owners. Nursing a sick animal is often considered as an art and this should not be taken as a causal measure. Yes. You need to take extra care to the dog when it becomes sick. For example, the sick dog with high fever needs to be given only some bread pieces and bulky non-vegetarian items may be avoided. Such dogs should be kept in some calm place after medications are taken and should not be disturbed. During the nursing of the dog who has taken the drug, the animal needs coaxing and stroking by the owner. Don't raise the dog's head too much to avoid the passing of drugs given by the mouth directly into the respiratory organs like lungs. During the nursing measures, take care by giving warm fluids. Safety is to be given more priority during the nursing activity in any dog. When the dog has severe diarrhea, the animal may start showing signs of dehydration. Hence, the nursing care for dehydration includes an addition of small doses of salt and glucose to water in a careful manner. Similarly, the vomiting dog also needs proper nursing care. Ice cubes may be given in such cases along with egg whites to smooth the esophageal passage. Nowadays, a non-contact based infrared thermometer has come up in the market to obtain the temperature of the animal without much stress. Place the dog in a shaded place if the temperature is so high and provide good ventilation to the suffering animal. If the animal is suffering from hypothermia, provide warm blankets to given comfort to the animal. Common questions about heart worm The common questions about heart worm are often related to the species affected by heart worms in addition to the dogs. One should know that in addition to dogs, the cat, fox, wolf, horse, sea lion etc. are also affected. Can this be cured or not? Yes. This can be treated. What is the drug used often for the prevention of heart worm in dogs? Ivermectin is the drug used often to have preventive actions for these heart worms. Dogs affected reveal constant coughing, panting and dullness in many occasions. What will be the size of the worms? In the case of the females, it is about twenty-seven centimeters and in the case of males, it is about seventeen centimeters in length. Is there any vector involve in the transmission of the disease? Yes. Mosquitoes often get associated as vectors in which the early development of larvae of heart worms occur in them. Is the prophylaxis meant only for heart worms or others also? The prophylaxis is meant not only for the heart worms but also for the hook worms, whip worms, and round worms. What is the infective type of larvae that is associated with the transmission of these heart worms? The third stage larva that is transmitted by the mosquito bites. This occurs through out the world. In some areas, the incidences are less in colder months in which the mosquito breeding will not be there and may be dormant during these periods. What is the name of the drug used for therapy and prevention? Ivermectin and milbemycin oxime may be used for both purposes. Ivermectin is available in injection form and oral form. Additionally, the forms for external application are also available. The cost factor needs to be worked out for all these treatments. What is the frequency of drug used for prophylaxis? One month before the mosquito season and up to two months after the mosquito season, ivermectin or milbemycin oxime may be given once monthly for the prophylaxis. Diethylcarbamazine may be used for therapy purpose. Glucosamine in a Dog's Diet As you stand in the store pondering the plethora of varieties of dog food for your dog's diet, your mind can truly become overwhelmed. The numerous ingredients in dog food simply complicate things even further. Who really knows what all of those ingredients really mean? You see glucosamine on some of the dog food labels. That sounds a bit familiar. Haven't you heard of glucosamine in the news? What exactly is glucosamine and why should it be in your dog's diet? You have probably heard of glucosamine in the news. Glucosamine has been beneficial to joint health in humans. Research has also shown that glucosamine in a dog's diet can be beneficial to your pet's Health. Glucosamine is a dietary supplement. Glucosamine has been shown to encourage good joint health. This supplement helps to maintain good joint cartilage. Glucosamine is one of the key building blocks to produce joint lubricants. The joint lubricant helps to keep the joints moving and functioning with ease. Glucosamine in your dog's diet will ensure your pet's joints work at their peak performance levels for years to come. How does glucosamine work to help your dog's joints? Glucosamine hydrates and lubricates your pet's joints. The added hydration and lubrication will help to prevent arthritis in your dog. For this reason, glucosamine is a good supplement in your dog's diet. Pet owners of large breed Dogs that are predisposed to having joint and hip problems should especially consider adding glucosamine to their dog's diet. Shellfish is a good source of glucosamine. Another way to get glucosamine involves a unique process of fermenting corn. This method to produce glucosamine creates a vegetable based glucosamine. Glucosamine is typically safe as part of a healthy and balanced diet. Your dog's diet should include glucosamine to encourage joint health. Your pet will not suffer from side effects or interactions with medications when glucosamine is part of your dog's diet. Today, many high-quality dog foods, manufactured by reputable companies, have already added glucosamine to their food products. Animal nutrition reports have discovered the benefits of glucosamine in your dog's diet and dog food producers have quickly responded. If you find that your dog's diet does not contain glucosamine, or you feel your pet could benefit from additional supplementation in the diet, you should have no problem locating glucosamine supplements for your pet. Glucosamine supplements come in numerous forms. You can even give your dog a treat specially designed to supplement your dog's diet with glucosamine. The tasty treat eliminates the trouble of dosing your dog with pills. Of course, it is always best to talk to your veterinarian about any changes to your dog's diet. He or she can give you advice about what supplements should be added to your dog's diet and in what quantity. Ask your vet about the advantages of glucosamine. As you consider your dog's diet and the ingredients, consider your dog's health. Glucosamine is often added to high-quality dog food. Talk to your vet to determine if additional glucosamine supplements would be beneficial in your dog's diet. Protect your dog's joints by monitoring the amount of glucosamine in your dog's diet. Vegetarian Dog Diet You have recently welcomed a furry companion into your home. Your four-legged friend has adopted you as her own. Now that you have become a true pet owner, you need to decide what to feed your pet. You eat a vegetarian diet, so you would like your new dog to follow these same guidelines. Is a vegetarian diet right for your dog? Let's take a look at what dogs eat in the wild. A wolf or stray dog typically will kill an animal or scavenge until she finds an acceptable fare. In the wild, a dog will consume grains and vegetables, but the dog's diet also contains meat. Taking a look at your pet's teeth, you may notice that grinding and tearing surfaces are present. This is one indication that dogs are omnivorous. This means that dogs are biological meat and plant eaters. Straying from nature can be a difficult task, but may not be impossible. It can be possible to feed your dog solely vegetarian meals, but this type of diet is not typically recommended for your pet. Your dog's diet must be well balanced and nutritious to support good health and optimal body function. A completely vegetarian lifestyle may be perfect for you, but difficult to achieve for your dog. A healthy diet should allow your pet to thrive not simply survive. A vegetarian dog diet will, too frequently, result in a dog who shows signs and indications of a lesser quality of health than a dog fed a well balanced diet contain animal products. Your dog's body requires high amounts of protein. Protein is frequently provided through animal tissue and bones in the wild, as well as, in most varieties of manufactured dog diets. Amino acids are also key to your dog's health. Only 12 of the 22 essential amino acids can be produced by your dog's body. The other 10 amino acids must be provided to your pet through your dog's diet. A vegetarian dog diet has trouble meeting the requirements to allow your dog to thrive under these circumstances. As with any change you would make to your own diet, you would want to consult your physician for medical advice. Talk to a professional about the advantages and disadvantages of feeding a vegetarian dog diet to your pet. Depending on your specific plan, he or she may be able to recommend some supplements to add to the prospective vegetarian diet that will create a healthy balance for your new furry friend. If supplements are not available to create the healthy and balanced diet your dog deserves, then the two of you can discuss other options to determine a dog diet that works well for your pet and satisfies your lifestyle. A vegetarian dog diet goes against nature so to speak and is typically not recommended for dogs. Talking your situation over with a veterinarian will help you to determine the best way to achieve your dietary goals for your pet. Your dog's diet must be well balanced and nutritious to provide essential nutrients and amino acids to your furry friend. Supplementation may help you to achieve your goal. Keep in mind that you and your vet both want what is best for your pet and you will undoubtedly determine a dog diet that works for your family. Vaccinations Vaccinations need to be undertaken always by the pet owners and the dogs need to be vaccinated at the appropriate time. This helps to improve the resistance of the animal against some specific diseases causing frequently problems in dogs. The dogs that are orphaned due to the death of the mother have lesser protection in their immune system. Such animals are to be particularly protected against various diseases. Vaccination is usually started at the age of five to six weeks and prior to this age, the maternal immunity will be helping the animal to have natural disease resistance. It is always better to deworm the animal before the vaccination and this is given emphasis many times. Vaccination against the parvo virus is done at an early age because pups are often being affected by parvo viral infections. The booster dose for each vaccine needs to be given at appropriate time and this helps to build up the immune status to an appreciable manner. Vaccination is carried out in many countries against rabies disease. Hence, vaccination against rabies is given more emphasis always. Even rabies tags are fixed on to the dog collar of most of the dogs. Rabies vaccine is given at age of thirteen to fifteenth weeks of age and is repeated in fifteenth months time. However, this depends on the type of vaccine used. Once in three years, this is repeated. In dogs that have not received colostrums or dogs at high risk areas, give measles virus vaccine and killed parvovirus vaccine before five weeks of age itself. Leptospira serovar vaccine is given at six to eight weeks of age and again at tenth to twelfth weeks and at thirteenth to sixteenth weeks. Then annually repeat this. Bordetella and lyme disease vaccinations are only optional ones in case of dogs. Vaccinations against the canine parainfluenza, canine parvovirus, and canine adenovirus type- two is similar to the schedule maintained with leptospiral serovars. Protein and Kidney Failure from Your Dog's Diet Early research indicated that higher levels of protein in your dog's diet would lead to kidney failure. Do you know if your dog's diet is safe? Are you killing your furry friend by providing too much protein in your dog's diet? The studies that showed a relationship to high protein levels and kidney failure that sparked concerns about protein levels in dog's diets were not sound. The research was performed on rats, not dogs. Rats primarily eat plants as their natural diet. Naturally, rats biological makeup would indicate trouble digesting diets containing high levels of protein. The rats have difficulty excreting protein due to their specific dietary needs, not because the high protein diet causes kidney failure. Still, where do we stand on protein and your dog's diet? Dogs are naturally omnivorous. In the wild, dog's would hunt or scavenge. The dog's diet would consist of both plants and animals. Naturally speaking, dogs are meat eaters, too. For this reason, a dog can easily tolerate a diet consisting of 30% protein or more. When protein intake is reduced in a dog's diet, renal function does not improve. Renal lesions are not less likely to form when a dog is fed with a low-protein diet. It is not until a blood urea nitrogen, or BUN, test indicates a level of 75, that a reduction in protein intake be considered for your dog's diet. If you have concerns about the amount of protein in your dog's diet, schedule an appointment to speak with a professional on the subject. Your trusted vet can advise you on the specifics in regards to your dog's diet. It is a myth that dog's cannot properly digest high levels of protein in their diet. Kidney troubles do not result from high levels of protein in your dog's diet. Large amounts of protein can be safely digested in your dog's diet, especially when they come primarily from animal origins. Ten amino acids must be provided in your dog's diet through protein. Only twelve of 22 amino acids can be manufactured in your dog's liver. For this reason, meat such as heart, spleen, and meat by-products all have a place in your dog's diet. A high-quality dog food should contain meat as the first ingredient. This will provide the proper amount of protein for your dog's diet. You know you are on the right track when you turn to nature for advice. Do you ever recall seeing a wild or stray dog happily grazing through the cornfield at mealtime? Senior dogs should not be automatically placed on lower protein diets exclusively based on age. In fact, some older pets require a dog's diet higher in protein than during their younger adult stage. Unless medically indicated, provide your pet the benefit of quality protein in your dog's diet. Feeding your dog protein should not cause you concern. You want what is best for your dog and nature tells you that protein will help your dog to thrive. If you have questions about the myth of protein and kidney failure in your pet, speak to your vet about your dog's diet. Preventing dental disease Preventing dental disease is an important feature, which is to be paid more emphasis by the dog lovers or dog owners. Dental disease is given priority in the health schedule of the dog nowadays because of the association of the dental diseases with systemic diseases in the dogs. Antibiotics need to be given in the initial stage of teeth infection itself and if not, this may cause specific infections and the organisms may spread to the other nearby regions like the oral mucous membrane and pharyngeal region etc. More acidic or alkaline food materials need not be given to the dogs to avoid the possible teeth damage. Antibiotics need to be given in the initial stage of teeth infection itself and if not, this may cause specific infections and the organisms may spread to the other nearby regions like the oral mucous membrane and pharyngeal region etc. More acidic or alkaline food materials need not be given to the dogs to avoid the possible teeth damage. If the dog is not given at its young age some bony material to bite on, the dog may develop some dental diseases later. The teething action often causes the animal to go for biting in an indiscriminate manner. Hence, the animal has to be given some biting materials to avoid the occurrence of dental diseases. If there is an evidence of bleeding from the oral region, the dog needs to be examined thoroughly for any dental abnormality. Mainly the puppies or some times, the adult dogs also may have teeth injuries. They need to be attended immediately as a preventive step. If not, the animal may end up in secondary bacterial infections. Hunting dogs need additional care associated with the dental structures and such care is needed to avoid the future dental problems in such dogs. Brushes are available to provide better dental care to dogs. However, one has to allot more time and should have patience to use such brushes in case of dogs. This may lead into further problems. Centers for disease control and prevention are trying to put up guidelines to prevent the dental diseases in dogs in many nations. However, the oral examination needs to be carried out frequently in dogs and such activities help to rule out the emerging problems pertaining to the dentine structures in the beginning itself. How Treats Affect Your Dog's Diet You know the importance of choosing a healthy diet for your pet. You have taken the time and effort to consult with the veterinarian about a healthy and nutritious dog food. Whether you choose dried food, canned dog food, or make it from scratch, you may be overlooking something extremely important in your dog's diet. Do you occasionally give your best friend a treat from the table or a rawhide to chew? These treats may seem like a simple snack or tidbit, but they really can add up. You may not have considered it before, but any and all treats that you give your pet are a part of your dog's diet. The question now becomes, how significant are treats in your dog's diet? Do you give your dog a treat once a day in the evening while watching television, or do you scatter Milk Bones throughout the day for each cute look or adorable pet trick? The type of treats you give your dog also makes a difference in your dog's diet. Do you pass out cookies and scraps from dinner, or maybe a piece of popcorn or two? Junk food for you becomes junk food for your pet. In fact, some healthy foods for you are not good for your dog. Raisins are a healthy snack for humans to munch on between meals, but they can be detrimental to the health of your dog. Keep your dog's diet healthy even during snack time with treats. Rawhides are an area of controversy. Some pet owners and vets feel they do not make a good treat for your pet. Others feel that rawhides provide entertainment and good dental health for your dog. Find out what your vet recommends. If you decide to allow rawhides in your dog's diet, avoid them in excess. They can create thin stools and provide many empty calories. Your dog views a treat as just that, a special treat between meals. For the most part, dog's don't care if you give them a baby carrot, rawhide chew, or Milk Bone. They are happy to get the snack. If you find you provide numerous treats during the course of the day, you may need to modify your dog's diet to avoid maintaining a healthy weight. Giving your pet a whole bunch of treats sure is fun for both you and your dog, but can lead to serious health troubles. Consider altering your dog's diet by giving him or her less treats. Instead of a large Milk Bone, for example, break the treat into several smaller pieces and distribute them one at a time. This will have your dog eating less between meals. Ice cubes, small bits of apple, and baby carrots are terrific healthy treat ideas to consider when choosing a healthy diet for your dog. Such treats make little difference overall and make monitoring your dog's daily intake much easier for you. This way, you can focus solely on the food consumed during mealtime. A dog's diet needs to be healthy to ensure a long and happy life for your pet. Tips to Consider When Determining Your Puppy Dog's Diet You have recently welcomed a new cute and cuddly puppy into your home. A healthy diet is essential for a long, happy life together. What things do you need to consider when selecting your puppy dog's diet? Always talk to your vet about a proper puppy dog diet. Remember that a puppy dog's diet is not the same as an adult dog's diet. Avoid a trip to the grocery store to grab a bag of adult dog food to feed your pet. This will not meet the nutritional needs of a healthy puppy dog diet. You can choose to feed your new puppy one of several options. Natural and organic puppy dog diets have become more popular in recent years. Some pet owners prefer to feed a raw diet to their puppy. Most people choose to use kibble as the main component of the puppy dog's diet. For this reason, I will focus primarily on this choice. As you wean the puppy, a high-quality puppy food with tiny kibble is best. A puppy dog's diet should include all the essential vitamins to create a healthy diet for excellent growth. Feed your new puppy three or four times a day. Your puppy dog's diet should consist of puppy food moisten with water. Do not moisten the puppy food with milk. The milk acts as a laxative in your puppy dog's diet. The water will create a softer, more palatable cuisine for your pet. As the new puppy grows and becomes accustomed to eating the kibble as a regular part of his or her diet, you will want to gradually decrease the amount of water. If you plan to feed dry dog food in the future, expect to transition the dog's diet earlier than later. Continuing to moisten the dog food may make transition more difficult later in life. By six weeks of age, your puppy dog's diet can be solid kibble. Your puppy should be permitted all the kibble he or she wants during the initial phase of the weaning process. Make sure you present the puppy the new diet of puppy food at regular times. Around five months of age, your puppy dog's diet should decrease to only two feeding time's per day. By this time, you should establish a specific quantity of food per day to ensure a healthy diet and weight for your dog. Talk to your vet about how much to feed your new puppy. All puppies look cute, round and cuddly at some point during their first few months. It can be difficult to know when your puppy is overweight. Your veterinarian will help to advise you on this issue. It is a good idea to open up the door of communication between you and your vet now. Both vet and owner only want what is best for the new puppy. Feeding your new puppy a healthy diet does not have to be difficult. Talk to your vet for advice and information. Always choose a quality food as the main source of nutrition in your puppy dog's diet. A healthy diet for your puppy will set the stage for a healthy dog in the years to come. The Role of Calcium in Your Dog's Diet It is important for your dog's diet to contain all of the essential vitamins to ensure excellent health. One of the important nutrients in your dog's diet is calcium. When we think of calcium, strong teeth and bones come to mind. Your dog's diet should be rich in calcium to support healthy teeth and bones, but a delicate balance exist in relationship to calcium and your dog's diet. It is possible to have too much or too little calcium in your dog's diet. When a dog's diet contains too little calcium, your dog may develop a condition called rickets. This condition creates soft bones that bend under the weight of your dog. In contrast, too much calcium can create bone abnormalities, as well. Large breed dogs, for example, who are given too much calcium as puppies in their diet, will develop large bones that are low in density. Strength is a problem with such bones due to the large amount of calcium supplements. When your dog's diet contains appropriate levels of calcium, such bone abnormalities occur infrequently. This is just one more reason to carefully select an appropriate diet for your dog. Always consult with your veterinarian to determine the best amount of calcium in your dog's diet. Calcium plays an important role in your dog's diet, but other vitamins and nutrients work hand in hand with calcium. Some minerals are interdependent. Calcium happens to be one of such mineral nutrients. Calcium works together with phosphorus. A balance of the two nutrients calcium and phosphorus must exist in a healthy ratio to ensure a dog diet that will maximize the potential advantages for your pet. Studies involving animal nutrition show that a ratio of 1.0 to 2.0 parts calcium should be coupled with 1.0 part phosphorus. When calcium and phosphorus ratios vary greatly from this range, bone troubles result. Dog diets consisting exclusively of meats, will not provide the proper amount of calcium and phosphorus to create healthy bones. Such a diet results in a ratio of about 1.0 part calcium to 18 parts phosphorus. The range of absorption is where the trouble begins. Vitamin D is another nutrient that influences the absorption of calcium and phosphorus. If a dog's diet lacks the appropriate amount of vitamin D, the other nutrients will not provide all the benefits to your pet. Excessive amounts of vitamin D can have toxic effects on your dog. It is imperative to maintain appropriate levels of vitamin D in your dog's diet. Again, feeding your dog food from a reputable company will allow you confidence in knowing that your dog's diet is healthy. During pregnancy or when your dog is nursing, higher levels of calcium are important in your dog's diet. At this time, feed your pet extra amounts of a balanced dog food. You should not have to supplement your pet at this time. Milk fever, or eclampsia, cannot be avoided with calcium supplements. Eclampsia is not a nutritional deficiency, but a metabolic condition that affects the dog after the pups have been born and begin nursing. Avoid supplementing your dog's diet with calcium or other nutrients without specific discussion with your vet. When calcium, for example, is out of balance, health can truly be effected negatively. Feeding your dog a balanced diet is essential. Reputable dog food companies have researched animal nutrition to ensure the best possible health for your dog. Providing your dog's diet in a healthy, balanced formula may be the best way to take care of your pet. Pet Identification Pet identification is highly required in these days because of the need for the licensing of the dog in a proper manner and to reduce the numbers of the stray dog menace in streets. Pet identification is done by many methods, which are different from each other. The cost factor for that also has variations accordingly. The identification of your pet may be done by personalized tags, some times by the municipal license tag, rabies tag, and more. Most of the time, your telephone number and your name will be on a place in the personalized tags of the dogs. If any body encounters the dog accidentally during the event of missing of the dog will become capable of reporting the facts to the concerned officials. Plastic and metal pet identification tags are available in multiple colors and the dog owners can choose the color they want. However, many select the reflective type of dog tags along with the collars. Hence, the dogs can be identified even in darkness to a greater extent. Nowadays, many electronic gadgets are available like microchips which are embedded into the dog. However, these kinds of electronic chips need to be implanted behind the ears and once implanted, this will reveal all the data embedded in this in the computer. A collard and tagged animal makes an indication that it is not a stray animal and this gives more security to the dog. Traditional forms of identification of the animal like tattooing is now a day not carried in dogs. Thus tracing the missed animal will become easier for the pet owners mainly due to the identification-based dog collars. Food allergies Food allergies are something that is difficult to identify unless one is well aware of the baseline information with regard to this type of allergy. The main symptoms of food allergies in dogs include the facial itching, limb chewing, belly itching, recurrent ear infections or skin infections. Since the dogs consume lot of prepared food materials including various kinds of proteins, fillers, coloring agents and more; in the commercial food materials, the incidences of food allergies are more than one can imagine. Allergic reactions mostly involve the skin or the gastro intestinal tract. If you come across your dog itching after the provision of specific food materials, then suspect the food allergy in this animal. However, conditions like fungal infections need to be ruled out in general before the conclusion of itching as a sign of food allergy. There are many recorded incidences of allergies of dogs to corn or to wheat. However, the food allergies vary from dog to dog. Read the labels clearly before feeding your dogs with pet food materials, in such occasions. Too much colored food materials may be avoided since they may cause allergies to your dog. Food allergies are often linked to the hyper active behavior noticed in the dogs. Added colors, preservatives, and high fat diet might cause such food allergies in the dogs and hence, one has to be careful in providing new kind of diet to their dogs and closely monitor the dog for any signs of allergy. There are many occasions that food allergies might be diagnosed in the dogs but the dog may have other problems like pancreatitis. To rule out the food allergies, observation your dogs everytime you feed them, look for reasons to link the signs of dog with food given, specific signs encountered, differential diagnosis etc. are the important features to be given emphasis. Is There a Difference in a Senior Dog Diet? You hate to admit it, but your furry pal is getting a little older. You want to ensure that your pet is happy and healthy for many years to come. You have heard all of the hype about the new dog diets for older pets. Is there really a difference between dog food for adult dogs and kibble recommended specifically for seniors? How do you know when to switch your pet to a different diet? The best resource for information about dog diets is your pet's veterinarian. Only you and your vet know the specific needs of your pet the best. Discuss with your vet your concerns and questions. He or she will be able to advise you on what changes, if any, need to be made to your dog's diet. If your older dog does not have any health problems and maintains a healthy weight, there is no need to change your dog's diet from adult to senior dog food. On the other hand, if your dog has trouble keeping the weight off or digestive issues, you may need to switch. If weight is the only issue, consider slightly lowering the amount of dog food you give to your pet. This may be all the change your dog's diet requires. A senior dog is classified as a dog in the last third of their life span. Larger dogs, for instance a Great Dane, live to be about 9 years old. Around the sixth year of life, you may want to consider a senior dog's diet. A poodle, on the other hand wouldn't reach senior status until About age ten due to the longer life expectancy. Primarily, the decision to change your dog's diet should be based on health condition rather than actual age in years. Your vet will help you to determine when the right time is to alter your dog's diet. Dog food especially prepared for senior dogs typically has less calories. This helps to combat any weight issues. The senior dog food also contains more fiber for the different needs in your dog's diet. As dogs age, they tend to suffer from constipation. This extra fiber will help remedy this problem. Renal failure can be another medical problem for senior dogs. How can your dog's diet help this problem? Reducing the amount of protein in your dog's diet will decrease the work load for the kidneys. For this reason, senior dog food frequently has lower protein content than regular adult formulas. Whenever possible, allow your dog to eat dry dog food to encourage excellent dental health. The dry kibble helps to reduce plaque and tartar buildup. If your older pet refuses to eat the food dry, you may need to moisten it with water or purchase moist, canned varieties. If your vet recommends, supplements may be helpful as part of your senior dog's diet. Some pets are unable to eat properly due to oral issues. Other older pets are unable to gather all of the nutrients from their food for various health reasons. Supplements such as daily vitamins and glucosamine can be beneficial to maintaining a healthy diet for your dog. Glucosamine helps to encourage joint health. For senior dogs, glucosamine can combat arthritis and hip displasia. Vitamins C, A, and E may prevent the natural aging process and encourage better health for senior dogs. Talk to your vet about adding such supplements to your dog's diet. You want what is best for your pet. Your senior dog needs to have a diet that meets their special nutritional requirements. You and your vet can work together to decide what is the best diet for your senior dog. Your dog's diet directly affects his or her health. Take care of your pet by monitoring your dog's diet closely with the aid of your veterinarian. A Dog's Diet Influences Oral Health Your dog is your very best friend. Every single time you walk through the door your dog is so happy to see you that he wags his tail and practically smiles at you. How can you show your pet how much they mean to you? Well, one way is to take care of that smile for your pet. Did you know that your dog's diet can influence their oral health? Humans need to brush and floss their teeth regularly to keep their teeth, tongue, and gums in good condition. Research has recently shown a link between good oral health in humans and a lower risk of heart disease. If good oral health can have such a profound affect on people, then it only makes sense to consider the impact it can have on man's best friend. It is important to brush your dog's teeth frequently to keep plaque and tartar from becoming an issue. Even wiping his gums with a clean, damp cloth can be beneficial. Your dog's diet also plays a role in your pet's oral health. Do you typically feed your dog canned or dry dog food? What kind of treats and toys do you provide for your pet? All of these things can affect the likelihood of trouble with your pet's teeth. When your dog's diet is nutritionally sound, containing essential vitamins, nutrients, and enzymes, your pet's oral health will be at its very best. Feeding dry dog food rather than a moist canned variety is best for your dog. The tiny kibbles' hard surface rubs against the teeth to remove and reduce plaque. The simple act of moistening the dry dog food with water or gravy eliminates this property from dry dog food. The treats you give your pet are part of your dog's diet just like snacks are part of a person's diet. As humans, we tend to want to overlook our snacking habits, so it can be easy to overlook the treats you give your dog. This is not a good idea. Carefully consider any and all items your dog will consume. Do you give your dog bones, rawhides, jerky treats, or dog biscuits? Maybe your pet prefers greenies or corn starch chews. You may not have considered it, but tossing Spot a rawhide chew is like giving him a candy bar. The rawhide, for example, contains calories and is often provided between meals. Many of the treats and snacks you provide in your dog's diet can be just empty wasted calories. Some treats, alternatively, provide excellent opportunity to improve oral health. Greenies, rawhides, bones, and hard dog biscuits all help to keep tartar at bay. The softer snacks, such as jerky treats, do not provide much relief from plaque. The healthy treat, on occasion, will also prevent your dog from having bad breath. Your dog's diet must be healthy to ensure excellent oral health. Dry dog food is best whenever possible. Don't forget to select treats for your pet that will enhance your dog's diet. Consciously monitoring your dog's diet will positively influence your best friend's oral health. Avoid Table Scraps in Your Dog's Diet We have all done it. Our cute, little furry friend is practically smiling at us from beneath the kitchen table. The ears are perked and the tail is wagging. We know what our dog is after. Just a tiny tidbit from dinner would be delightful, right? What could it hurt? It is just a bite or two after all. Hold Fido's ears he won't want to hear this. A dog's diet really should not contain table scraps. People food is just that...for people. A dog's nutritional needs are not the same as a human's. Sure, we eat some of the same things, but feeding your pet from the table is one of the biggest mistakes for your pet. A dog's diet doesn't require all the added goodies we put into our meals. People have problems with obesity. A dog can have this problem, as well. If your dog's diet consists mostly of scraps from the dinner table, chances are high that your dog will have trouble maintaining a healthy weight. Even a few pounds over weight can really make a difference in the quality and length of your pet's life. Curb the begging and stick to your guns. When you have a dog who is not a picky eater, it can be tempting to let your pet be the garbage disposal in the home, but really, this is not a good idea. Certain people foods can harm your dog and should never be a part of your dog's diet. Grapes, for example, have been known to cause serious problems for dogs, even death. Chicken bones and popcorn can also be a problem for your dog. Permitting large quantities of chocolate can be dangerous in a dog's diet. A poor diet even shows up out in the yard. When your dog's diet is not at its best, your pet's outputs will be greater in size, smell, and mess. Benefits of choosing a healthy diet for your dog will be noticeable in your pet's health, as well as, during those walks around the block. There are a few occasions when a supplement or treat from the kitchen may be alright, but never in excess. Talk to your veterinarian about healthy snacks for your dog's diet. If you simply must continue feeding Fido at the table, many vets recommend you give your pet ice cubes or pieces of carrot to munch on between scheduled feeding times. Providing your pet these healthy alternatives to pizza and cupcakes gives you the freedom to choose a healthy and nutritious snack for your dog's diet. So, the next time your beloved pet starts eyeing your grub, redirect his or her attention. Don't reach for your fatty steak or chicken leg. Instead, toss your buddy a cool, refreshing ice cube to bat around and munch on. A couple of baby carrots will keep Fido happy and leave you feeling good about your choices for the nutritional value of your dog's diet. You will know that you are doing your best to maintain a high-quality diet for your pet. Bathing a dog Bathing a dog needs to be given more emphasis. This is because of the fact that if you are careless in bathing, the animal may end up having some infections. For example, if you don't close the ears with large cotton ball, the water may enter into ear canals and may cause some ear infections with signs like constant discharge from the ears and shaking of head. Frequency of bathing actually depends on the breed of the dog. If the dog is of a hairy type like the cocker spaniel, then the bathing is to be carried out once in six to eight weeks. If these breeds are bathed too frequently, then the skin and coat loose the protective characters. However, when the dog has defecated on the skin due to the frequent digestive upsets leading to diarrhea, to avoid the bad smell, the dog may be subjected to frequent bathing some times by the owners. Take more care in avoiding some irritant soaps or human soaps. The soap materials used for human beings are not suitable for dogs. Similarly, many human shampoo products are having some ingredients that are not suitable in the proportions that are to be used in case of dogs. Hence, always try to use the shampoo products that are mentioned mainly for use in dogs. Take more care in using any new product. Always have good time and patience for products required for bathing in one place with availability of water source. Dogs love the sprinkling of water, river, and oceans. Even when you are using bathtub, have everything in one place and then start bathing of the dog. Try to have a leash, conditioner, towel, and shampoo in the bath place. Conditioner is of helpful to make the combing activity easier later. Bathing should be a convenient activity to both the dog and the owner. This should not be a burden. Do parasites cause "Scooting"? Parasites too cause the scooting. Scooting is a an anal sac disease. First let's understand what scooting is in detail. This is the dragging of anus with the hind limbs in an extended state. Parasites causing irritation in the anus regions lead to such type of actions in animals like dogs. However, one should not be under the impression that it is the parasite that alone causes such scooting in case of dogs. There are many occasions in which the dog may have the scooting without any parasite based etiological agent. For example, the anal gland infections, tumors at the anus and injuries near the anal regions also may lead to such type of dragging of anus region, frequently by the affected dogs. Flea bite allergy often causes irritation at the anus region and the animal may try to bite the anus region and the irritations due to these factors lead to the final dragging of anus region on the ground. Cestodiasis in dogs is the condition caused by tapeworms. In such occasions, if the animal is not treated in time, the animal may be seen exhibiting the scooting activities. Tapeworm segments passed in the stool create crawling like activities near anus. Such crawling activities of the tapeworm segments lead to severe itching at these regions. Hence, to make a relief from this type of constant irritation, the animal starts pressing the anus region on the ground first and then tries to drag it on the ground with typical extension of rear limbs. Usually there is a packet of eggs when the fecal sample is examined by microscope. However, the flotation technique leads to breakage of these packets to burst and hence, diagnosis is difficult in such occasions. Scooting dogs need to be examined to rule out tapeworm segments, which look like rice like pieces. These segments are white in color and turn yellow when taken from the body. Tapeworms themselves may be seen in the motion or near anus below the tail regions. Consult your veterinarian for specific cures for this. Fleas and other parasites Fleas and other parasites need to be given always a priority by the dog owners. The common incidences of flea bite allergy in case of dogs cause worries among the dog owners. Flea bite induces allergic reactions in the concerned area bitten by the fleas. Hence, the affected area looks like hairless area and the animal starts scratching. Fleas cause severe dermatitis in dogs with severe flea infestations. Many times, the flea bite causes allergic reactions in the dogs. In many occasions, dogs experience severe discomforts due to these allergic reactions. Medicated collars are available to treat and prevent the infestation with external parasites like ticks or fleas. Other parasites like ticks, lice in addition to the internal parasites like hook worms, round worms, whip worms etc. cause affections in the health status of the animal. For example, if hookworm affects the animal, most of the times, the dog has anemia. The anemic signs become more prominent depending on the degree of affection by the hookworm. Hookworm larvae can pass directly through the skin and cause problems in the affected ones. Such dogs may reveal lesions pertaining to the dermatitis in the feet region and in the skin areas. Skin rashes may be seen frequently in such cases and the affected animal passes loose stool, which is of red tinged and mixed with blood material. If the round worms are seen in more numbers, the affected puppies reveal a potbelly condition, which is easily recognized by the dog owners themselves. Piperazine salts are given by oral route for the treatment of this problem. However, broad-spectrum anthelmintics like pyrantel pamoate, fenbendazole etc. are given to treat these conditions. Many drugs have come in market to treat the fleas and other parasites. Nowadays, the medical agent called as ivermectin is highly preferred by many dog owners to treat the fleas and other parasites in dogs. This drug is available in injection form and oral form. Even the drug is available for the external application also. Does Your Dog's Diet Need to Include Supplements? A healthy, balanced diet is essential for a long and happy life with your pet. How do you know if your dog's diet needs supplements? What types of supplements should you add to your dog's diet? In most cases, your dog's diet will not need to be supplemented. Assuming you feed your pet a diet formulated by a reputable dog food company, your dog's food is specially designed for a healthy balance to ensure excellent health for your pet. Occasionally, some low-quality dog foods will increase the need for extra supplementation. Your vet may recommend that you give your dog's diet a little boost. Consider supplementing your dog's diet with a hard boiled egg a couple of days per week. This simple step will add extra amounts of vitamins A and D to your dog's diet. Such vitamins help to maintain good bone structure and healthy eyes. If you have decided to personalize your dog's diet by customizing a raw diet, cooking at home for your pet, or just want to make sure your dog's diet is at its best, you will want to know about the benefits of other supplements. Your dog's diet can be supplemented with whole grains, green vegetables, and nuts. These items will increase your dog's intake of vitamin B. Other ways to supplement your dog's diet to increase the amount of vitamin B include beans, yeast, and liver. Your dog needs vitamin B in a healthy, balanced diet to support healthy skin and muscles. To ward off immune system deficiencies, supplement your dog's diet with additional vitamin E. Good sources of vitamin E can be found in wheat germ, bran, and vegetable oil. Vitamin K can be another important nutrient in your dog's diet. Liver, fish, leafy greens, and seeds can provide vitamin K to your dog's diet. This vitamin will help to enhance your dog's blood clotting abilities. Glucosamine can be a great supplement in your dog's diet. Glucosamine has been proven to improve joint health and ward off arthritis in your pet. Supplementing your dog's diet can be risky if not done correctly. You may think you are providing your pet excellent vitamins and low calories by tossing your dog a few grapes or raisins. Some dogs have been known to die from renal failure due to consuming such fruit. Always seek advice from a professional before supplementing or changing your dog's diet in any way just to be on the safe side. Calcium supplements can be dangerous when used excessively in your dog's diet. Although calcium is good in moderation to form strong, healthy bones, too much calcium can create trouble. Large breed pups given too much calcium may grow large bones, but these bones lack the strength they need. Always talk to your vet about the supplements you are considering. Your vet can advise you on the appropriate amounts of each supplement to add to your dog's diet. Both you and your vet care for your pet and want what is best for your dog. Providing a healthy and nutritious diet is one of the easiest ways to ensure good health for your furry friend. Dry Vs. Canned food These types of food materials are different with different grades of liking by the dogs. Dogs like dry foods only if they are tasty only and however, on comparison, the dogs prefer only the canned food items. Reason for such preference by the dogs is that in case of canned food items, the moisture is about seventy to eighty per cent but in case of dry food, it is only about ten per cent. However, if you view it in terms of nutrients, often the dry food contains nearly ninety per cent nutrients whereas the canned food items contain only less per cent of nutrients and most of the times. It is only soy products that are structured so well to look like meat pieces. Hence, to make up the nutritional balance in the body systems, the dog has to eat more amounts of canned food materials than the dry food materials. Hence, just compare the cost factor related to this feature by you. Many dry food items are soybean and rice based. Now some dry food items are based on corn. Sometimes, beef based or chicken based food items come in the cans along with mineral and vitamin supplements suited for the upkeep of the dog's health status. Larger dogs that weigh more than thirty pounds need to be fed with semi moist food items or dry food items in most of the occasions. This is to satisfy the food receptors in the stomach. This is due to the fact that the larger dogs need to eat plenty of moist food or the canned food items to satisfy these criteria. But it may not be practically possible in these larger dogs. The small sized dogs may have a satisfactory level of nutrients if fed even the moist food items. However, the caloric density of the dry food should not be forgotten. Enriched dry food items are highly welcome ones than the non -enriched food items. Dogs need different diets at different ages Dogs need different diets at different ages. Yes. This is true. For example, the puppy needs milk as the major food item while an adult dog may need beef or chicken in addition to the boiled egg and milk. So depending on the age factor, the diet schedule varies in reality for the dogs like any other species. Puppies need greater amounts of protein, fat and carbohydrates than an adult dogs. Furthermore, puppies need more frequent feeding schedules in a day, unlike an adult dog. The movement based requirements of diet are more in the case of puppies, since they are often more active than the adult dogs. Elder dogs need restricted protein but the protein needs to be easily digestible and easily assimilated in the body. The diet schedule should have ample supply of water for them. Feeding aged dogs too much protein may finally lead to over burden to the renal structures and ultimately, the dog may end up damaging filters in the kidney. This is true especially when the immune system of these dogs is compromised due to many factors. Similarly, the elderly dogs need less food only because the movements of the adult dogs are highly restricted and hence, they have to spend a limited of energy. Female dogs in the pregnancy stage need not be fed a full stomach since it may cause some discomforts to the animal. However, the pregnant animal and the nursing animal need special type of food items that deliver a balanced type of nutrition with proper supplementation of vitamins and minerals. The nursing animal with puppies need to be fed with enough amounts of calcium and hence, there will not be any calcium based deficiency and the bones of the puppies will be strong without any curving. First steps in grooming Grooming is one of the important activities to be known well by the dog owner. If the dog owner is not aware of the grooming, then the dog may encounter many types of diseases. First steps of grooming consists of activities like maintenance of coat, nails and ears. The maintenance of the coat mainly consists of enrichment measures like proper bathing, combing, drying of skin by dryers, and more. The animal need not be bathed daily and this helps to protect the skin's characteristics like insulation feature. Use conditioners and shampoos that are meant for dogs. Combing needs to be carried out with a soft brush meant for use in case of dogs. There are varieties of brushes available and depending on the type of breeds, one can use the concerned brush. This grooming of the coat by a comb needs to be carried out daily and the fallen hair if any needs to be placed in dust bin always. Otherwise, when the dog owners switch on the fan, the hair will fly and may enter the nostrils of persons. Always don't clip too much because this may lead to injuries of nail always. Similarly, you need to carry all the materials required for the clipping with you before the start of the procedure. Use a sharp clipper designed for use in case of dogs. It is better to have the dog on the raised place and hence, the control of the animal is easier. Ear canals are to be checked up frequently and sterile cotton may be used for cleaning purposes. Grooming associated guidelines need to be followed strictly by the dog owners. Nail-maintenance is one of the first steps of grooming activities. Live nail areas can be easily clipped away and are always light colored than the reddish area of the nail in the higher position. During the holding of your dog's feet by you, always have a firm grip. If not, the dog will take an upper hand during the clipping and some injury may occur. GENERAL HISTORY OF DOGS. There is no incongruity in the idea that in the very earliest period of man's habitation of this world he made a friend and companion of some sort of aboriginal representative of our modern dog, and that in return for its aid in protecting him from wilder animals, and in guarding his sheep and goats, he gave it a share of his food, a corner in his dwelling, and grew to trust it and care for it. Probably the animal was originally little else than an unusually gentle jackal, or an ailing wolf driven by its companions from the wild marauding pack to seek shelter in alien surroundings. One can well conceive the possibility of the partnership beginning in the circumstance of some helpless whelps being brought home by the early hunters to be tended and reared by the women and children. Dogs introduced into the home as playthings for the children would grow to regard themselves, and be regarded, as members of the family In nearly all parts of the world traces of an indigenous dog family are found, the only exceptions being the West Indian Islands, Madagascar, the eastern islands of the Malayan Archipelago, New Zealand, and the Polynesian Islands, where there is no sign that any dog, wolf, or fox has existed as a true aboriginal animal. In the ancient Oriental lands, and generally among the early Mongolians, the dog remained savage and neglected for centuries, prowling in packs, gaunt and wolf-like, as it prowls today through the streets and under the walls of every Eastern city. No attempt was made to allure it into human companionship or to improve it into docility. It is not until we come to examine the records of the higher civilisations of Assyria and Egypt that we discover any distinct varieties of canine form. The dog was not greatly appreciated in Palestine, and in both the Old and New Testaments it is commonly spoken of with scorn and contempt as an "unclean beast." Even the familiar reference to the Sheepdog in the Book of Job "But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to set with the dogs of my flock" is not without a suggestion of contempt, and it is significant that the only biblical allusion to the dog as a recognised companion of man occurs in the apocryphal Book of Tobit (v. 16), "So they went forth both, and the young man's dog with them." The great multitude of different breeds of the dog and the vast differences in their size, points, and general appearance are facts which make it difficult to believe that they could have had a common ancestry. One thinks of the difference between the Mastiff and the Japanese Spaniel, the Deerhound and the fashionable Pomeranian, the St. Bernard and the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier, and is perplexed in contemplating the possibility of their having descended from a common progenitor. Yet the disparity is no greater than that between the Shire horse and the Shetland pony, the Shorthorn and the Kerry cattle, or the Patagonian and the Pygmy; and all dog breeders know how easy it is to produce a variety in type and size by studied selection. In order properly to understand this question it is necessary first to consider the identity of structure in the wolf and the dog. This identity of structure may best be studied in a comparison of the osseous system, or skeletons, of the two animals, which so closely resemble each other that their transposition would not easily be detected. The spine of the dog consists of seven vertebrae in the neck, thirteen in the back, seven in the loins, three sacral vertebrae, and twenty to twenty-two in the tail. In both the dog and the wolf there are thirteen pairs of ribs, nine true and four false. Each has forty-two teeth. They both have five front and four hind toes, while outwardly the common wolf has so much the appearance of a large, bare-boned dog, that a popular description of the one would serve for the other. Nor are their habits different. The wolf's natural voice is a loud howl, but when confined with dogs he will learn to bark. Although he is carnivorous, he will also eat vegetables, and when sickly he will nibble grass. In the chase, a pack of wolves will divide into parties, one following the trail of the quarry, the other endeavouring to intercept its retreat, exercising a considerable amount of strategy, a trait which is exhibited by many of our sporting dogs and terriers when hunting in teams. A further important point of resemblance between the Canis lupus and the Canis familiaris lies in the fact that the period of gestation in both species is sixty-three days. There are from three to nine cubs in a wolf's litter, and these are blind for twenty-one days. They are suckled for two months, but at the end of that time they are able to eat half-digested flesh disgorged for them by their dam or even their sire. The native dogs of all regions approximate closely in size, coloration, form, and habit to the native wolf of those regions. Of this most important circumstance there are far too many instances to allow of its being looked upon as a mere coincidence. Sir John Richardson, writing in 1829, observed that "the resemblance between the North American wolves and the domestic dog of the Indians is so great that the size and strength of the wolf seems to be the only difference. It has been suggested that the one incontrovertible argument against the lupine relationship of the dog is the fact that all domestic dogs bark, while all wild Canidae express their feelings only by howls. But the difficulty here is not so great as it seems, since we know that jackals, wild dogs, and wolf pups reared by bitches readily acquire the habit. On the other hand, domestic dogs allowed to run wild forget how to bark, while there are some which have not yet learned so to express themselves. The presence or absence of the habit of barking cannot, then, be regarded as an argument in deciding the question concerning the origin of the dog. This stumbling block consequently disappears, leaving us in the position of agreeing with Darwin, whose final hypothesis was that "it is highly probable that the domestic dogs of the world have descended from two good species of wolf (C. lupus and C. latrans), and from two or three other doubtful species of wolves namely, the European, Indian, and North African forms; from at least one or two South American canine species; from several races or species of jackal; and perhaps from one or more extinct species"; and that the blood of these, in some cases mingled together, flows in the veins of our domestic breeds. THE COLLIE DOG. The Collie dog makes an excellent sporting dog, and can be taught to do the work of the Pointer and the Setter, as well as that of the Water Spaniel and the Retriever. He can be trained to perform the duties of other breeds. He is clever at hunting, having an excellent nose, is a good vermin-killer, and a most faithful watch, guard, and companion. Little is known with certainty of the origin of the Collie, but his cunning and his outward appearance would seem to indicate a relationship with the wild dog. Buffon was of opinion that he was the true dog of nature, the stock and model of the whole canine species. He considered the Sheepdog superior in instinct and intelligence to all other breeds, and that, with a character in which education has comparatively little share, he is the only animal born perfectly trained for the service of man. At the shows this type of dog is invariably at the top of the class. He is considered the most tractable, and is certainly the most agile. Second to this type in favour is the smooth-coated variety, a very hard, useful dog, well adapted for hill work and usually very fleet of foot. He is not so sweet in temper as the black and white, and is slow to make friends. There is not a more graceful and physically beautiful dog to be seen than the show Collie of the present period. Produced from the old working type, he is now practically a distinct breed. The skull should be flat, moderately wide between the ears, and gradually tapering towards the eyes. There should only be a slight depression at stop. The width of skull necessarily depends upon combined length of skull and muzzle; and the whole must be considered in connection with the size of the dog. The cheek should not be full or prominent. The muzzle should be of fair length, tapering to the nose, and must not show weakness or be snipy or lippy. Whatever the colour of the dog may be, the nose must be black. The teeth should be of good size, sound and level; very slight unevenness is permissible. The jaws Clean cut and powerful. The eyes are a very important feature, and give expression to the dog; they should be of medium size, set somewhat obliquely, of almond shape, and of a brown colour except in the case of merles, when the eyes are frequently (one or both) blue and white or china; expression full of intelligence, with a quick alert look when listening. The ears should be small and moderately wide at the base, and placed not too close together but on the top of the skull and not on the side of the head. When in repose they should be usually carried thrown back, but when on the alert brought forward and carried semi-erect, with tips slightly drooping in attitude of listening. The neck should be muscular, powerful and of fair length, and somewhat arched. The body should be strong, with well sprung ribs, chest deep, fairly broad behind the shoulders, which should be sloped, loins very powerful. The dog should be straight in front. The fore-legs should be straight and muscular, neither in nor out at elbows, with a fair amount of bone; the forearm somewhat fleshy, the pasterns showing flexibility without weakness. The hind-legs should be muscular at the thighs, clean and sinewy below the hocks, with well bent stifles. The feet should be oval in shape, soles well padded, and the toes arched and close together. In general character he is a lithe active dog, his deep chest showing lung power, his neck strength, his sloping shoulders and well bent hocks indicating speed, and his expression high intelligence. He should be a fair length on the leg, giving him more of a racy than a cloddy appearance. In a few words, a Collie should show endurance, activity, and intelligence, with free and true action. In height dogs should be 22 ins. to 24 ins. at the shoulders, bitches 20 ins. to 22 ins. The weight for dogs is 45 to 65 lbs., bitches 40 to 55 lbs. The smooth collie only differs from the rough in its coat, which should be hard, dense and quite smooth. THE FOXHOUND DOG. Foxhounds were the very first of the canine races in Great Britain to come under the domination of scientific breeding. There had been hounds of more ancient origin, such as the Southern Hound and the Bloodhound; but something different was wanted towards the end of the seventeenth century to hunt the wild deer that had become somewhat scattered after Cromwell's civil war. The demand was consequently for a quicker hound than those hitherto known, and people devoted to the chase began to breed it. Head: Somewhat broad, not peaked like the Bloodhound, but long from the apex to the frontal bones, eyebrows very prominent, cheeks cut clean from the eye to the nostril, ears set low and in their natural condition thin and shapely, but not large, nose large, jaw strong and level, and small dewlaps, expression fierce, and with the best often repellent. Eyes: Very bright and deeply set, full of determination, and with a very steady expression. The look of the Foxhound is very remarkable. Neck Should be perfectly clean, no skin ruffle whatever. The length of neck is of importance, both for stooping and giving an air of majesty. Shoulders: The blades should be well into the back, and should slant, otherwise be wide and strong, to meet the arms, that should be long and powerful. Legs and feet: The bone should be perfectly straight from the arm downward, and descend in the same degree of size to the ankles. The knee should be almost flat and level; there should be no curve until coming to the toes, which should be very strong, round, cat-shaped, and every toe clean set as it were. Coat: The coat is hard hair, but short and smooth, the texture is as stiff as bristles, but beautifully laid. Colour: Belvoir tan, which is brown and black, perfectly intermixed, with white markings of various shapes and sizes. The white should be very opaque and clear. Black and white, with tan markings on head and stifles. Badger pied a kind of grey and white. Lemon pied, light yellow and white. Hare pied, a darker yellow and white. Height: Dogs from 23-1/2 to 24 inches; bitches from 22 to 22-1/2 inches. THE DECORATIVE DEERHOUND. The Deerhound is one of the most decorative of dogs, impressively stately and picturesque wherever he is seen, whether it be amid the surroundings of the baronial hall, reclining at luxurious length before the open hearth in the fitful light of the log fire that flickers on polished armour and tarnished tapestry; out in the open, straining at the leash as he scents the dewy air, or gracefully bounding over the purple of his native hills. Grace and majesty are in his every movement and attitude, and even to the most prosaic mind there is about him the inseparable glamour of feudal romance and poetry. From remote days the Scottish nobles cherished their strains of Deerhound, seeking glorious sport in the Highland forests. The red deer belonged by inexorable law to the kings of Scotland, and great drives, which often lasted for several days, were made to round up the herds into given neighbourhoods for the pleasure of the court, as in the reign of Queen Mary. But the organised coursing of deer by courtiers ceased during the Stuart troubles, and was left in the hands of retainers, who thus replenished their chief's larder. Head: The head should be broadest at the ears, tapering slightly to the eyes, with the muzzle tapering more decidedly to the nose. The muzzle should be pointed, but the teeth and lips level. The head should be long, the skull flat rather than round, with a very slight rise over the eyes, but with nothing approaching a stop. The skull should be coated with moderately long hair which is softer than the rest of the coat. The nose should be black (though in some blue-fawns the colour is blue) and slightly aquiline. In the lighter-coloured dogs a black muzzle is preferred. There should be a good moustache of rather silky hair, and a fair beard. Ears: The ears should be set on high, and, in repose, folded back like the Greyhound's, though raised above the head in excitement without losing the fold, and even, in some cases, semi-erect.The ear should be soft, glossy, and like a mouse's coat to the touch, and the smaller it is the better. It should have no long coat or long fringe, but there is often a silky, silvery coat on the body of the ear and the tip. Whatever the general colour, the ears should be black or dark-coloured. Neck and shoulders: The neck should be long that is, of the length that befits the Greyhound character of the dog. The nape of the neck should be very prominent where the head is set on, and the throat should be clean-cut at the angle and prominent. The shoulders should be well sloped, the blades well back, with not too much width between them. Stern: Stern should be tolerably long, tapering, and reaching to within 1-1/2 inches of the ground, and about 1-1/2 inches below the hocks. When the dog is still, dropped perfectly straight down, or curved. When in motion it should be curved when excited, in no case to be lifted out of the line of the back. It should be well covered with hair, on the inside thick and wiry, underside longer. Eyes: The eyes should be dark: generally they are dark brown or hazel. The eye is moderately full with a soft look in repose, but a keen, far-away gaze when the dog is roused. The rims of the eyelids should be black. Body: The body and general formation is that of a Greyhound of larger size and bone. Chest deep rather than broad, but not too narrow and flat-sided. The loin well arched and drooping to the tail. Legs and feet: The legs should be broad and flat, a good broad forearm and elbow being desirable. Fore-legs, of course, as straight as possible. Feet close and compact, with well-arched toes. The hind-quarters drooping, and as broad and powerful as possible, the hips being set wide apart. The hind-legs should be well bent at the stifle, with great length from the hip to the hock, which should be broad and flat. Coat: The hair on the body, neck, and quarters should be harsh and wiry, and about 3 inches or 4 inches long; that on the head, breast, and belly is much softer. There should be a slight hairy fringe on the inside of the fore and hind-legs, but nothing approaching to the feathering of a Collie. The Deerhound should be a shaggy dog, but not over coated. Colour: Colour is much a matter of fancy. But there is no manner of doubt that the dark blue-grey is the most preferred. Next come the darker and lighter greys or brindles, the darkest being generally preferred. Yellow and sandy-red or red-fawn, especially with black points i.e., ears and muzzle are also in equal estimation. Height: From 28 inches to 30 inches, or even more if there be symmetry without coarseness, which, however, is rare. Height of bitches: From 26 inches upwards. There can be no objection to a bitch being large, unless she is too coarse, as even at her greatest height she does not approach that of the dog, and, therefore, could not well be too big for work, as over-big dogs are. NEWFOUNDLAND -- THE ARISTOCRAT AMONG DOGS. The dogs which take their name from the island of Newfoundland appeal to all lovers of animals.There are now two established varieties, the black and the white and black. There are also bronze-coloured dogs, but they are rare. The black variety of the Newfoundland is essentially black in colour; but this does not mean that there may be no other colour, for most black Newfoundlands have some white marks. In fact, a white marking on the chest is said to be typical of the true breed. Any white on the head or body would place the dog in the other than black variety. The black colour should preferably be of a dull jet appearance which approximates to brown. In the other than black class, there may be black and tan, bronze, and white and black. The latter predominates, and in this colour, beauty of marking is very important. The head should be black with a white muzzle and blaze, and the body and legs should be white with large patches of black on the saddle and quarters, with possibly other small black spots on the body and legs. Apart from colour, the varieties should conform to the same standard. The head should be broad and massive, but in no sense heavy in appearance. The muzzle should be short, square, and clean cut, eyes rather wide apart, deep set, dark and small, not showing any haw; ears small, with close side carriage, covered with fine short hair (there should be no fringe to the ears), expression full of intelligence, dignity, and kindness. The body should be long, square, and massive, loins strong and well filled; chest deep and broad; legs quite straight, somewhat short in proportion to the length of the body, and powerful, with round bone well covered with muscle; feet large, round, and close. The tail should be only long enough to reach just below the hocks, free from kink, and never curled over the back. The quality of the coat is very important; the coat should be very dense, with plenty of undercoat; the outer coat somewhat harsh and quite straight. The appearance generally should indicate a dog of great strength, and very active for his build and size, moving freely with the body swung loosely between the legs, which gives a slight roll in gait. As regards size, the Newfoundland Club standard gives 140 lbs. to 120 lbs. weight for a dog, and 110 lbs. to 120 lbs. for a bitch, with an average height at the shoulder of 27 inches and 25 inches respectively; but it is doubtful whether dogs in proper condition do conform to both requirements. When rearing puppies give them soft food, such as well-boiled rice and milk, as soon as they will lap, and, shortly afterwards, scraped lean meat. Newfoundland puppies require plenty of meat to induce proper growth. The puppies should increase in weight at the rate of 3 lbs. a week, and this necessitates plenty of flesh, bone and muscle-forming food, plenty of meat, both raw and cooked. Milk is also good, but it requires to be strengthened with casein. The secret of growing full-sized dogs with plenty of bone and substance is to get a good start from birth, good feeding, warm, dry quarters, and freedom for the puppies to move about and exercise themselves as they wish. Forced exercise may make them go wrong on their legs. Medicine should not be required except for worms, and the puppies should be physicked for these soon after they are weaned, and again when three or four months old, or before that if they are not thriving. If free from worms, Newfoundland puppies will be found quite hardy, and, under proper conditions of food and quarters, they are easy to rear. LITTLE KNOWN DOG BREEDS We are familiar with such dog breeds as the poodle and Labrador retriever. There are other breeds less known, especially in this country. Below, I have given a short description of several of these less-known dog breeds. Affenpinscher -- This is the smallest dog in the breed which also presented us the schnauzers. The affenpinscher is thought to be the most suitable for a family pet as it is very intelligent, easy to train of a good demeanor. They have a dark fur and have always shown affection to human beings. Anatolian Shepherd -- This dog breed is of a medium size and has proved to be very courageous. This breed is very powerful and loyal and it is used for military and hunting purposes. The basenji -- These are medium sized muscular dogs and are also named the African Barkless Dogs. These dogs are able to bark, they just choose not to. Their biggest skill is hunting. The Bouvier des Flandres -- This dog is similar to the terrier one . Their fur is generally dark and they have proven to be very calm. At the beginning they were bred as herders in France but nowadays they are used for police and military purposes, as well as guidance for blind persons. Asian Ovtcharka --The Central Asian Ovtcharka are large and muscular dogs. They appear to be very loyal and fearless dogs with strong protective instincts which makes them perfect as watchdogs. The Polish Owczarek Nizinny -- This dog is of medium size and has long fur which covers its eyes. These are devilish dogs that are known for creating chaos when left alone. The next time you are looking to add a new dog to your household, why not take a look at one of these?
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