Posts for the Taking Care Category

Pooching Around’s Indispensable Survival Kit For Dogs Infographic

Doggy resource site, Pooching Around has highlighted the important items you should store away for your dog’s survival kit for emergency situations. There is no telling when disaster, whether man-made or natural, could strike and therefore, it is better to be safe and prepared than under prepared and sorry.

The infographic helpfully points out in a clear and precise way, exactly what you need. Including essentials such as food, water and some kind of portable bowl to feed and water them from.

A doggy survival kit is much of the same thing as a human go-bag and an important aspect of survival, especially animals prone to stress like dogs, is having things that they are familiar with and that will help keep them calm. This may be a favorite blanket or even a favorite toy. Both are important to pack though as the blanket will comfort your furry friend, while the toy will not only provide them with entertainment, but may remind them of home.

Internet and phone services may be down in a state of emergency, so its important also to have stored away in hard-copy form, details of vets and shelters in the wider local area (as you don’t know where you might end up if you have to flee your home) and information regarding your dog’s health records and prescriptions and medications. Having this close to hand when seeking treatment or help, will save time if a vet that has never met you or your dog before is trying to workout what is best to prescribe for your dog and how best to help them.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Treating Depression in Dogs

Is your dog suffering from depression? Have you noticed a lack of interest in him suddenly? Does your pooch’s emotional and physical enthusiasm drops down when he is stressed out, and unable to cope up with the disturbing or changing situations? There can be different reasons for canine depression, from loss of a family member to arrival of a new baby or pet at home.

Small dogs and hyperactive dogs like Pomeranian Chihuahua Mix, Border Collie, Labradors, etc are prone to developing depression and anxiety.

Symptoms of Depression:

Major symptoms of depression are:

  1. Excessive Licking
  2. Avoidance or Hiding
  3. Loss of Interest
  4. Changes in Sleeping Habits (Insomnia or Excessive Sleeping)
  5. Appetite Changes (Loss of Appetite or Overeating)

Treating Depression the Right Way:

There are some do’s and don’ts of treating canine depression to tackle the situation thoroughly.

Things to Do:

You should consider following things to cure depression in dogs:

1) Consult the vet:

The first step to treating a pet-related problem is identifying the symptoms correctly. Dogs can get depressed for various reasons:

  1. Arrival of a new baby or pet or visitor
  2. Death of a house pet or family member
  3. Sudden change in dog’s daily routine
  4. Change of house
  5. Depression of the owner
  6. Lack of proper social interaction

If you have failed to recognize any specific cause for your dog’s depression, then, consult the vet to identify it. The dog may be suffering from any medical issue.

2) Comfort the dog:

Dogs love discipline in life. They like staying within the comfort zone, i.e., following a routine and being familiar with the surroundings.

Changes in routine should be brought gradually, so the dog may not identify them. If you have changed home, keep the dog bowl, crate, etc. same to make him comfortable at the new place. Make good memories at the new site with the dog to rely on!

If it’s about the arrival or departure of someone new, pay attention to the dog as much as you did before. Make him experience the fun with or without the new member respectively to get used to the change. Implement treat training method to attract him into the play.

3) Physical and mental exercise:

Involve the dog into mental and physical exercises outdoors and indoors. Make use of their hunting skills and the habit of ‘completing the task’ at hand at any cost. You just have to engage the dog once, and he will play for hours. With time introduce the new member to the dog and let him take the dog out.

4) Pay attention:

This is not a warning signboard, but something important. Your dog loves to be the center of attention. So, it’s imperative that you show love and care to the pooch despite the changes in his life.

5) Medication:

If the dog fails to recover from the symptoms of depression for several months, then you can move on to giving him vet-prescribed antidepressants like Prozac.

Things to Avoid:

1) Delay in treatment:

Begin the treatment at the earliest you recognize the symptoms and change in dog’s behavior. Depression and inactivity can increase the chances of further problems, including upset stomach, obesity, and maybe heart problems. Curing prolonged depression is difficult.

2) Allow overeating:

Giving love and care to your dog doesn’t mean that you can promote the pooch’s overeating habit out of anxiety. You have to maintain the balance of food according to activity levels per day. Obesity in dogs can lead to high blood pressure and heart problems. Better to stay safe than be sorry later!

3) Show depressed behavior:

Emotions are contagious for pets. If your depression has transferred to your pooch, you have to consult the psychologist to get treatment for yourself. Moreover, you can train your pooch as a ‘therapy dog’ to aid in curing your depression, it will help both of you to walk out the door of gloom and sadness.

4) Force to perform tasks:

Forcing a dog to socialize, play, and go out with the new member will not do the job. You have to bring the changes gradually through positive reinforcement. Give him treats whenever he does something for you.

5) Change the dog supplies:

With a change of home, changing dog supplies, including the bed, crate, bowl, toys, etc. is not a positive step towards treatment. Once the dog is out of depression and acclimates to the new place, you can move ahead towards changing the supplies.

Conclusion:

Consistency is the key. Despite the changes in life, you can accustom the dog to new things. Comfort him to live with the changes, and your dog will soon overcome his depression. Positive reinforcement is the best encouragement for the dog to get excited to perform various tasks for you that will benefit his mental state.

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

Best Training Treats For Your Dog

There is no denying that dogs are intelligent creatures, they can understand our gestures, words & intonation. However, they are like our babies and children do require training. You need to patiently put in efforts to teach your dog the right behaviors. As dog-parents you can successfully train your pup by utilizing the right tools and methodologies.

Ways to Train Your Dog

There are two approaches for pet-parents who wish to train their dogs:

  • Positive Reinforcement Training
  • Aversive Training

The former is based on the concept of rewards while the latter revolves around positive punishments. Reinforcement training is a more preferred approach due to the benefits it offers. While using positive reinforcement, you treat your furry companion with his favorite brand of dog food or toy whenever he pleases you with his behaviors. It helps strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend and also makes communication easy.

Training Treats:

Treats are a great way of motivating your dog to obey your commands. Like humans dogs are also fond of delicious food hence it works as the best simulator.  However, the treats should form a tiny percentage of the dog’s diet as consumption in a significant amount may lead to severe health issues.  You can also follow some easy recipes and prepare healthy treats at home.

Single Ingredient Treats!

This is the best option for those who aren’t good cooks. You can provide your pooch with these treats which are delicious and full of nutritional goodness.

Cooked Chicken

Chicken is rich in protein which contains the amino acids vital for your dog’s health. You can boil it without any seasonings, cook it or bake it with little fat and your pup will love it. You can also add any grain to the meat to make healthy treats.

Coconut

Coconut consists of Lauric acid and albumin which boost the pup’s immune system and help prevent various illnesses. Eating coconut is also beneficial for your dog’s coat and skin health. You can use coconut water as a refreshing treat while training your pooch. Remember moderation is essential so don’t overdo it.

Pears

Pears are nutrient powerhouses. They are rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals and have antioxidant properties. They are beneficial for your dog’s digestive health and help fight diseases such as cancer as the antioxidants prevent free radical damage. Cut the pear into cubes, make sure you remove the stem, pit & seeds, and feed it to your dog when he listens to your commands.

Baby Carrots

Carrots are an excellent source of fiber. They contain carotenoids that are beneficial for the eyes and skin of your pooch. You can cut baby carrots into small pieces to feed your dog as a treat.

Oatmeal and Pumpkin Biscuits:

Oatmeal is a source of good carbs whereas pumpkin is packed with dietary fiber and vitamin A. You can combine the benefits of the two superfoods to make nutritious and tasty biscuits.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups (384grams) whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup (128 grams) rolled oats
  • 1½ cups pumpkin puree
  • 3 tablespoons water (Enough to make a workable dough)

Recipe

Preheat the oven to 350⁰F. Mix the flour, rolled oats and pumpkin puree in a bowl. Add a little water to make a ball of dough. Roll it out and cut cookies into the desired shape. Place them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake for 30 minutes.

Beef Jerky:

Grass-fed beef is beneficial for dogs; you can incorporate it into their meals in many ways. Beef jerky is one such treat that can be given to your pooch when he behaves like a good boy.

Recipe:

Preheat the oven to 180⁰F. Cut the beef into ½ inch wide pieces and rub them with parsley. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes. Afterward, place them on a dehydrator at 150⁰F and dehydrate it for 5 hours. Once the beef pieces have dried out, your jerky is ready.

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

Put Doggie Tech on Your Wishlist

If you love your dog and need some gear, it’s a good time to start dropping hints about what you and your dog need. Read on for gift ideas that will make your relationship with Fido even stronger.

Dog monitoring camera

You may be curious about what your dog does while you’re at work. The solution? A dog monitoring camera. This technology has come a long way. Most of these cameras are affordable and unobtrusive, occupying about the same space as a landline telephone. And they generally connect through your wifi.

Some cameras have live streaming capabilities that allow you to issue a firm “No” if you see your dog tearing into your favorite shoes. Some cameras even allow you to dispense treats remotely while you’re telling Rover “Good boy!”

Pet cams are particularly valuable to people who suspect that their dogs are barking too much during the work day and annoying the neighbors. You can dispense a treat when your dog is being well behaved and quiet to reinforce good behavior. Your gifter may be able to score one of these cameras for only $70!

Dog tracker

Does your dog keep gaining weight even though you have put her on a diet and kept it up religiously? You may need a dog tracker that tells you how much exercise she is getting. These new trackers are invaluable for showing you that your dog really isn’t working out in the backyard. Or you might discover that she has trouble going up stairs.

A GPS tracker, which fits right on your dog’s collar, will tell you exactly where your pooch is at any time. This new technology is a godsend for people who worry about losing their dogs. If your dog has ever tunneled under the fence or run out the door when you were bringing in the groceries, you should definitely put one of these trackers on your wishlist. Pet Life Today has a list of the best GPS dog trackers.

Same thing if you go camping or traveling with your dog. Basically, any time you have your dog off leash and away from home, there’s a risk he will run away. So a tracker gives you peace of mind.

Dog bed

Many of us sleep with our dogs, but science tells us we really shouldn’t share our human bed with them because that’s disruptive to sleep. A dog in your bedroom, however, has been documented to improve sleep.

The solution? A good dog bed in your bedroom. There are many different good dog beds out there. In general, you want one that:

  • Is definitely big enough for your dog.
  • Allows for cuddling with other animals if you have cats or a ferret that are also in love with your dog.
  • Has features specific to your dog’s needs, like spine support for smaller dogs with short legs or cooling materials for dogs who overheat.
  • Is washable.
  • Is not ugly to you. It will be part of your decor for quite a while.

Make sure that your wish list specifies exactly what kind of dog bed you want so your loved ones don’t make a regrettable mistake.

If you are getting a bed for a second dog, be sure both beds are big enough for the biggest dog. Little dogs are known to commandeer the bigger bed, leaving the good-natured big dog trying to fit his frame onto the smaller bed.

In conclusion, technology has really improved the lives of dog owners. We can now know that our dogs are safe, secure, and appropriately behaved at all times. So don’t hesitate to put dog tech on your wishlist.

How to Find a Qualified Pet Sitter

Having your pet by your side at all times sounds like the ideal scenario, but sometimes you just have to leave your furry friend at home. Whether you’re travelling for work, or the hotels you’re about to stay at while you’re on vacation are not pet-friendly, your four legged-friend will have to stay behind, and it’ll require proper care while you’re away. Therefore, it’s essential that you find a professional and qualified pet sitter for your cat or a dog that will make sure all of their needs are met during your absence.

Ask around

One of the first things that comes to mind when you’re looking for the right pet sitter is to ask any of your friends if they can recommend someone trustworthy. No matter how professional or qualified a sitter may appear on the commercial, it’s best that you find out whether they’re good or not first hand. Therefore, if any of your friends or colleagues at work may have trusted their pet with a sitter, make sure you ask for their number and see for yourself how dependable they are.

Talk to your vet

A support network is one of the crucial segments in every professional pet sitter’s work, so they will be connected with various veterinarians. Therefore, the next time you take your pet to an exam, and you know you’ll go out of town soon, make sure you ask your pet’s veterinarian for any recommendations. This is an especially good idea if your dog requires special care and has special needs. If the vet and the sitter are already familiar with each other, you won’t have to worry about your pet getting the best care in case of any emergency.

Look up online

The internet is filled with various pet sitting agencies, so it’s always a good idea to look up a professional online. In a sea of good agencies, look for the one that offers professional pet minding services, and has trained and certified pet sitters with long experience in pet sitting. Once you think you’ve found the right one, make sure you also find out if anyone you know has had experience with the agency, so you can be sure they’re the right choice.

Ask for references

Once you’ve chosen the person you’d consider for taking care of your pet, make sure you do an interview with them and ask for references. The longer the experience they have in pet sitting, the better. A professional and qualified pet sitter is most likely to have several regular clients, as well as a few pet care services that will give them the highest recommendations. This will also mean that they’ve already learned what dogs and cats need, how they’ll react to your absence, and what the best way to calm them down is in case they feel too sad for being left behind.

Give them a tryout

If you’re satisfied with a sitter’s references, you’re only one step away from hiring them. Namely, you should have them spend a day with your pet and see how the two will get along. Even though the minder you chose may have a lot of experience, every pet is different and it doesn’t necessarily mean they will like the sitter. Therefore, give your pet an opportunity to meet the minder, and vice versa. If you see that your pet approves your choice of sitter, look no further and seal the deal at once. Only after all of the previous criteria are met will you be able to have peace of mind while you’re away.

Finding a reliable pet sitter may seem like a piece of cake, but it’s not always that easy. Your pet is like a family member, and trusting them with a stranger is a serious step, so it’s vital that you find a person who has good references, a long experience in pet sitting and one that will get along with your pet well.