10 Things You Should Know About Your New Puppy

Just about everybody loves a puppy.  What’s not to love?  Okay, maybe there are a few things — like accidents in the house, chewing your things, nipping…

Here are a few things that you should know about your new puppy:

1.  When you bring your new puppy home he doesn’t know very much.  He’s spent most of the first weeks of his life living with his mother and siblings, who are dogs.  That means he knows some basic dog things, like how to whimper and bark to get attention.  He knows how to poop on papers.  His breeder may have taught him a few things but there wasn’t time to teach him very much.  Your puppy is pretty much a blank slate.  It’s up to you to teach him everything he needs to know.

2.  Your puppy is a little animal, not a small person in a furry suit.  He has animal instincts and will always react as an animal when he doesn’t know what to do.  That means that your puppy can bite and scratch and hurt somebody if he’s not supervised and trained.  He needs training while he’s young so that he doesn’t grow up to be a badly-behaved dog.

3.  Puppies need socialization.  Socialization is the process of introducing your puppy to the big, wide world and everything in it.  Your puppy needs to go places, see new things and meet people.  He should learn that new things and new people are good.  Socialization teaches a puppy to be confident and helps him later in life.  Puppies that are well-socialized tend not to develop behavior problems later on.

4.  You should begin training your puppy early.  You can train a dog throughout his life but it’s always easier and advisable to start training a puppy when he’s young.  Teach your puppy good manners and some basic obedience skills like Sit and Come.  You can take him to Puppy Preschool or Puppy Kindergarten classes where he can learn some simple obedience and enjoy some socialization at the same time.

5.  Your puppy will most likely chew on things so you should try to “puppy proof” your house as much as possible.  Put away your shoes and other things that he can reach.  When your puppy chews on things take them away.  If you catch your puppy in the act of chewing on something he’s not supposed to chew on, you can correct him (no physical punishments).  Otherwise, if you don’t catch him, you should let it go.  There is no point in correcting a puppy or dog for something that has already happened. Your puppy or dog won’t know why they’re being corrected.

6.  Puppies may nip, bite too hard when playing or simply get too raucous.  When they do, you should stop playing with them and ignore them.  If they continue, you should call a time-out.  Time-outs work with puppies just as they do with children.  If your puppy nips you, you should yelp and let him know it hurts.  If he even touches his teeth to your skin, yelp and don’t play with him.  If you stop playing with him whenever he tries to nip he will stop nipping.

7.  If you have children teach them that they can’t mistreat a puppy.  Tell them not to stare at a puppy or otherwise make the puppy uncomfortable.  They puppy may lunge at them.  And, if they run away screaming from a puppy, the puppy will chase them.  Not all kids are happy about that fact.  Children under six should be supervised when they play with puppies.

8.  Puppies may whine and bark and whimper for attention.  Sometimes you will have to ignore them, especially if you want to get any sleep.

9.  Do make sure that your puppy gets all of his vaccinations on schedule.  See that he takes heartworm preventive and flea medication if he needs it in your area.  Your puppy’s health and well-being depend on proper veterinary care.  You should also make sure that you are feeding him a good dog food with meat protein sources.

10.  Puppies are adorable and they will make you do whatever they want.

Those are a few things you should know about puppies.  Have fun with your puppy and may he (or she) grow up to be a wonderful dog.

10 Things You Should Know About Your New Puppy courtesy Dog Articles.

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5 Tips For Traveling With Your Dog

Traveling with your dog can be a lot of fun.  You can enjoy seeing new things and doing things together.  Many dogs enjoy traveling.  These days many hotels welcome dogs as guests.  But if you’re going to be traveling with your dog there are some things you can do to make your trip a success.  Here are some tips:

1.  Make sure that your dog is up-to-date on his vaccinations before setting out on your trip.  Some areas can require you to show proof of your dog’s vaccinations if they ask so take your dog’s rabies certificate as well as having him wear his tags.  Rabies shots are required throughout the United States, so be sure that your dog is current on his rabies vaccination.  Besides the requirement, you never know what diseases may be present in the areas where you’ll be traveling.  It’s best to have your dog protected in case you encounter something unhealthy for your dog.

2.  When you travel your dog should wear a good collar with identification tags.  Even if your dog has a microchip, your dog should wear tags when he’s on vacation.  If your dog were to become lost (Heaven forbid!), and someone found him, it’s possible that they wouldn’t know to check for a microchip.  However, tags are always immediately recognizable.  Tags should have your name and current address and phone numbers on them.  You can also include your vet’s phone number or another number where people will know how to contact you.

Microchips are still good.  Collars can come off or be removed.  In that case, a shelter or vet scanning your dog can find the microchip and be able to contact you.

3.  When you travel with your dog take some water from home or buy bottled water on your trip.  A dog’s stomach can be easily upset when traveling.  Drinking strange water on the trip can cause diarrhea or other stomach upsets.  Taking your own water or buying bottled water can keep your dog feeling good and prevent you from having to do some clean up.

4.  Take your dog’s food with him on the trip.  Even if your dog eats a national brand of pet food there are variations in batches and lots.  It’s best to continue to feed your dog from the same bag or cans you bought at home to avoid stomach upset.  If your dog eats a food that’s hard to find then you can’t count on finding it when you travel.

5.  Crate your dog while he rides in the vehicle.  Whether you have a car, van, truck or any other kind of vehicle, you should crate your dog when he’s traveling with you.  Allowing your dog to ride lose in the car is not very safe for him.  Riding in a crate is the safest way for your dog to travel.  A hard-sided airline crate is usually the safest kind of crate for travel.  If you are in an accident you dog won’t go flying through the vehicle.  If he’s in the crate he will be as protected as possible.

Don’t choose a crate that’s too large.  If the crate is too big then your dog will be slung around in the crate if there is an impact.  Instead, choose a crate that is big enough for your dog to stand and lie down.  This will protect him in case of an accident.

There are many other things to remember when you travel with your dog:  remember to bring a can opener if you feed canned food.  Remember to bring your dog’s dinner dishes.  Remember to bring paper towels for any clean up.  Remember to bring your dog’s bed if he has a favorite dog bed.  The list is endless!  It’s like traveling with a baby.

There are some things that you can pick up on the way if you forget them at home, but if you remember to have your dog up-to-date on his shots, wear a good collar with current ID, bring water from home (or bottled water), bring his food, and crate him while he rides, you should have a great — and safe — trip.

5 Tips For Traveling With Your Dog
courtesy Dog Articles.

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10 Pet Safety Tips You Should Know

In some ways having a pet is like having a child.  You have to do all of the thinking and planning for him.  You have to be prepared for every contingency.  That means being prepared in case of emergencies and taking the proper precautions ahead of time.

Here are some tips that should help you take good care of your dog:

1.  Make sure that your dog is up-to-date on his vaccinations and that he has proper tags and ID at all times.  Microchips are recommended.  This is a great help should your dog ever become lost.  It gives him the best possible chance of being returned to you if somebody finds him.

2.  Obey leash laws.  This means that you should keep your dog safely contained in your own yard behind a fence.  When you have your dog out with you make sure that he is restrained on a good quality leash.  Don’t let your dog run loose.  This is dangerous to him and a nuisance to the neighborhood.

3.  Be careful what you feed your dog.  No chocolate.  No onions.  No raisins.  If in doubt about something your dog eats or if you suspect poisoning call your local veterinarian immediately.  Know the number of your closest emergency vet clinic and the shortest route in case you have an emergency at night.

4.  Crate train your dog.  Your dog should ride in a crate in your vehicle.  This is the safest way for your dog to travel.  Crate training is also a great way to help house train your dog.  If you ever intend to fly anywhere with your dog he will also need to fly in a crate.

5.  Keep a pet first aid kit on hand and know how to use the contents.  A good first aid kit should contain blankets, surgical tape, a muzzle, an antibacterial ointment (such as Neosporin), cotton swabs, tweezers, gauze and gauze pads, hydrogen peroxide, ipecac, scissors, forceps, diarrhea medication, and activated charcoal.  Remember that if your dog experiences an injury that he may react out of fear or pain.  Be careful in handling him.  He could bite you accidentally.

6.  Take special precautions in hot summer weather and during extreme cold.  Remember that dogs can’t sweat and that they suffer during extremes of weather just as people do.  They should not be left in vehicles during either extreme, even for a few minutes.

7.  Remember that your dog needs fresh water available at all times.  Dogs can become dehydrated just as people can.

8.  Take special precautions with dogs when there may be fireworks or other loud noises.  Many dogs are sensitive to these loud booms and can become frightened from them.  Some dogs can bolt and become lost.

9.  Old dogs need special care.  Keep an eye on their weight.  You don’t want them to be either too thin or too much overweight.  Both can be signs of an underlying health problem.  Make allowances for their age.  Provide a softer place to sleep, give them more time to eat, make their food more appealing.  Take them for a senior check-up starting when they’re about seven-years-old.

10.  Be patient with puppies.  They come to you not knowing anything.  They will make mistakes.  Teach them using positive training techniques and they will be able to learn anything you want to teach them.  A trained dog is a happier dog and has a better chance of fitting into your home and lifestyle and living a wonderful life with you.

10 Pet Safety Tips You Should Know courtesy Dog Articles.

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The Top 5 Things You Can Do To Keep Your Dog Healthy

1.  Water.  You probably already know that dogs need fresh, clean water at all times.  All of us do.  But if you want to remove as many toxins as possible from your dog’s water and do everything possible to keep him healthy, think about using a water filter.  Tap water can contain many unhealthy chemicals such as lead and low levels of prescription medications.  A water filter or purifier can help remove as many toxins from the water as possible and make the water healthier for you and your dog.

2.  Food.  There are an amazing number of dog foods on the market today.  Unfortunately, many of them are not made from very healthy ingredients.  They may technically pass government standards but they can contain ingredients that you wouldn’t want your dog to eat.  You can choose healthier food for your dog by doing some research and learning to read dog food labels.  Look for foods that contain more meats than fillers.  Most of the better foods contain much less corn and other cereal products.  It’s not necessary to go completely grain-free but you should look for foods that have named meat sources, such as lamb, lamb meal, chicken, chicken meal, and so on.

You should also avoid foods that contain the preservative ethoxyquin.  This same ingredient is used in making tires.  It’s not something that you want your dog to eat.  Instead, look for natural preservatives such as Vitamin E, Vitamin C, citric acid and rosemary.  These natural preservatives all have antioxidant properties and are healthier for your dog.

3.  Vet care.  Good vet care is, of course, important for your dog’s long term health.  This means flea control, heartworm prevention and receiving the necessary vaccinations.  However, all of these issues are the subject of some debate.  Flea control and heartworm prevention often involve using strong chemicals.  Some people feel that pets are being over-vaccinated.  You should familiarize yourself with these issues and discuss them with your veterinarian.  We are not advising you to leave off topical flea control or chewable monthly heartworm prevention.  Heartworms can kill dogs and flea infestation can make a dog’s life (and their human’s) miserable.  Vaccinations are necessary, at least at some intervals.  We are recommending that you do further reading and talk to your vet about what is necessary for the health of your dog.

4.  Exercise.  It’s very important that your dog gets the proper exercise.  As much as 40 percent of the dogs in the United States are considered to be overweight or obese.  This is often because owners overfeed them, give them too many treats and table scraps, and because the dogs don’t get enough exercise.  Taking your dog out for a daily walk is a good way to help your dog stay in shape.  Add a weekly run and your dog will be a much healthier dog.

5.  Spend time with your dog.  All of the other things you do for your dog’s health — providing him with good water, food, vet care and exercise — will be meaningless if you don’t spend time with your dog.  Enjoying your time together can do more than almost anything else to keep your dog healthy and happy.  Dogs have been shown to have a beneficial effect on human health.  The same is true of humans and dogs — we have a beneficial effect on their health.  Just petting a dog can improve the way he feels and acts.  Spend time with your dog and he will be a happier, healthier dog throughout his life.

The Top 5 Things You Can Do To Keep Your Dog Healthy courtesy Dog Articles.

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The Importance of Dog Insurance

A pet dog is more than just an animal you keep in the house – to many people, they are a member of the family, almost like a naughty child, or excitable little brother – and unfortunately, like most curious folk, can find themselves in a situation both you and they would rather not be in. This is why you should always make sure the little terror is insured – they can’t do it themselves you see, they don’t have bank accounts.

Typical dog insurance will cover the items listed below – but always make sure you check the details of your policy as every company is different, and have their own exclusions and definitions – Moneysupermarket says “You should always check the small print on your policy for exclusions as some things aren’t covered, for example; the cost of treatment for any condition which occurred before the policy started, flea control, vaccinations or spaying and castration. There are also some types of dogs which cannot be insured, for example; racing dogs, guard dogs, working dogs or dogs registered under the Dangerous Dogs Act.”: Vet Fees Pretty self-explanatory – there isn’t an NHS for animals unfortunately, and should your dog fall ill the bills from the vets can be expensive if you’re not covered, for example, a heart attack could cost you thousands of pounds in treatment.

Death Benefit This is also quite simple – the cover will pay out a fixed amount on the death of the animal. Holiday Cancellation Should your dog be taken ill and require constant attention, and you have a holiday booked, what can you do? Lose hundreds of pounds on your holiday, or try to find somebody to look after them in your absence? With this cover you will be financially reimbursed for the cost of the holiday, allowing you to look after him or her. Boarding Fees But what happens if the opposite happens? What if you end up living in accommodation that doesn’t allow pets, or have to travel for an extended period of time? Your pet insurance will usually cover boarding fees up to a certain amount, meaning you can leave your pet behind without too many worries.

Theft/Straying Should anything happen to your dog and he isn’t seen again, the policy would pay out in this case… Advertising/Reward …But if you’re certain that he’s still out there somewhere, your insurance will cover you for money spent on advertising his loss and offering a reward. Third Party Your dog might not be a car, but this works in the same way as it does your car insurance:- i.e. should your pet cause damage to another’s property and they claim against you, the insurance will cover it. Most companies offer differing levels of cover – usually offering all of the above, but with increasing financial amounts of cover. Always carefully consider the cover most suitable to you, and shop around for the best price – moneysupermarket.com offers a detailed comparison of a large selection of pet insurance plans, allowing you to make the decision that is best for you.

The Importance of Dog Insurance courtesy Dog Articles.

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Can You Catch A Disease From Your Dog?

We all love our four legged friends, but is there a possibility we may catch something from them?

Most everyone is familiar with tales of rabid animals, dogs included. Animals that foam at the mouth, go insane and are more than willing to bite. Chances are, you’ve never met a rabid animal, but you’ve certainly heard of one.

If you’ve ever been bitten by a dog, you’ll know that one of the things they have to do is rabies testing on the animal to make sure there is no way you could contract the disease from the bite.

Obviously, if there’s this much concern, there is definitely the potential for you contracting an illness or disease because of your dog.

Rabies is what is called a Zoonotic Disease. Derived from the Greek word “zoon”, or animal, and “nosos”, or ill, zoonotic diseases are diseases that can be transmitted from a wild or domesticated animal to a human (or vice versa).

While these diseases are relatively rare, they are still something to be considered when approaching strange or stray dogs as well as when handling your own.

Even if your animal does not appear to be ill, he could easily have a parasite you aren’t aware of. For example, hookworms can be present in the feces and (consequently) the salvia of an otherwise healthy dog without your knowledge. If you or your child were to let your dog “kiss” them while he is infected with hookworm, it could very easily be spread to you or your child. This demonstrates the importance of worming your animal early on and making sure your animal has regular check ups.

Hookworms, rabies, salmonella, roundworms, fleas, lyme disease, tapeworms, giardia, ringworm and other bacterial, fungal and parasitic illnesses are zoonotic and can be caught from your animal.

The best solution here is preventative maintenance. For one, always be sure to take your animal to the vet for regular check ups and for his routine vaccinations. If your animal is not sick, there is no way you can catch a sickness from him.

Also, do not handle animal feces directly. Always wear gloves or use a doggy poop bag when handling your animal’s waste. Also, always be sure to pick up any animal waste in your home quickly if there is the potential for your child to come in contact with it.

Wash your hands frequently when handling any animal. At the very least, be sure that wash your hands in between handling an animal and eating or touching your mouth in other ways. Use caution around strange dogs. Even if they appear healthy and friendly, they way very well be carrying a parasitic or fungal infection which could be contagious to you.

While it seems like there is much to be wary about in terms of your animal (or other animals) infecting you, remember that the list of zoonotic diseases is very short in comparison to the number of diseases you can catch from another human. As long as you are sure to worm your animal, treat them with flea/tick treatment if necessary, take them to regular vet check ups and stay hygienic when handling animals, you have very little to worry about.

Can You Catch A Disease From Your Dog courtesy Dog Articles.

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5 Things To Consider When Buying A Puppy

Having a puppy is something many children dream about.  They hear their friends at school talking about their dogs and the jealousy sets in.  You might desperately want one yourself.  The good news is that buying a puppy can be a great addition to your household and teach your kids great responsibility.  Even so, there are some things you need to think about before making the final leap.

1. The first thing to consider is that puppies take a lot of time and attention.  It can almost seem like you have to care for a newborn baby because the attention they need is constant.  It will get easier as they become older, but even full-grown dogs need pampering.  Many dogs and puppies are also very playful and need some form of entertainment or they’re likely to get into trouble.

2. Puppies also need to be trained in different areas as they get older.  There are probably training classes in your area that increase in difficulty as your dog gets older.  It is a good idea to send your children to the classes too so they know exactly how to interact with their pet.

3. Keep in mind that your puppy will cost a lot of money.  Even if you try to calculate all the costs there will be some that are completely unexpected.  Some of the many are food, toys, vaccinations, registrations, and dog training.  If poor little pup gets hurt you’ll also find yourself with a large vet bill.  Expect to pay for your dog what you would pay for a member of your “human” family because the costs can really add up.

4. Your puppy will get a lot larger depending on the breed.  While that is a fairly obvious statement it does need to be said.  If you have small children it can be intimidating to have such a large animal around.  The best way to avoid any problems is to do your research before your purchase to make sure you’re getting a dog that is just right.

5. Another consideration is that your dog will need considerable exercise.  If you enjoy exercising yourself this will be a no-brainer for you.  On the other hand, if you are worn out at the end of a long day it can be a lot of trouble to take your dog for a walk.  Many dogs also like to play with their toys and be active in general.  There are breeds that are less enthusiastic so choose one of those if you prefer to be sedentary.

You will also need room for your dog to play and sleep.  If you have plans to get a large dog you should make sure that you have a large area.  Of course, there are also dogs that will always be so small they can fit into a purse.  Make your decision based on the space you have.

Despite all of the things you need to think about it can be incredibly rewarding to be a dog owner.  This is especially true if it’s the first time you’re going to buy a puppy.  It is an experience like nothing else and they are oh-so-cute!  If you decide to make the purchase, it will be a neat adventure for your whole family.

5 Things To Consider When Buying A Puppy courtesy of Dog Articles.

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Bringing Home An Older Dog

Older dogs have special needs.  If you decide to bring home an older dog you will need to do some special things for him.  His health, his activities, his comfort in your home, his diet– all of these things will depend on you.

Whether you are adopting an older dog, you receive one from a friend, or you find an older dog as a stray, your first step should be to take your new friend to the vet. Even if your older dog looks healthy, many times older dogs have some hidden health issues that you can’t see.  Your older dog will need geriatric health screening at some point but you may not need to do that right away.  Your vet should, however, look at your dog’s teeth to make sure they are in good shape.  Poor teeth can often cause an older dog to be unable to eat properly.  This can lead to loss of weight and general poor health.  Your vet can make sure that your older dog is current on vaccinations — although you should not over-vaccinate an older dog. This general checkup should be able to catch any immediate health problems in your dog.

You should also pay close attention to the diet of your older dog. What has he been eating?  What kind of condition is he in?  Is he too thin?  Too fat?  If he’s in good condition you can continue to feed him what he’s used to eating, but if he needs to gain or lose weight you can gradually switch him to a better food.  You do not have to choose a “senior” dog food.  Experts are split on whether these senior foods are actually good for older dogs.  Many dogs lose weight on them.  They are generally designed for dogs that gain weight in their later years — they are tested on Labrador Retrievers and Beagles, which gain weight easily.  If you have a breed that loses weight when they’re older, as many dogs do, these senior foods would be a bad choice.  Instead, you can continue feeding a dog food for “all life stages.”  You can add supplements for joint health, such as glucosamine-chondroitin, MSM and others, if you wish.  People are divided on whether these supplements actually help an older dog but they don’t do any harm.

If your older dog has any particular health conditions, as diagnosed by your vet, you can add the appropriate supplements or medications.

If your older dog has hip dysplasia or other joint problems, you can work on activities that may help him.  Swimming is often good for some hip dysplasia.  If your dog is overweight then moderate exercise, such as long walks with you, is highly recommended.  Find the appropriate exercise for your older dog.  He’s not a young dog anymore but he can and should partake of exercise that he’s able to do.

Finally, make sure that you keep your older dog comfortable in your home.  His joints and bones may be achy sometimes.  Provide him with comfortable places to sleep, such as a soft doggy bed.  Orthopedic doggy beds are very good for dogs with any kind of hip dysplasia.  If your dog has joint problems or just feels old and moves more slowly, heated beds or heating pads under some covers can make him feel better.  If your dog eats more slowly because he’s missing some teeth give him plenty of quiet time to eat his food. Don’t rush him.

Your older dog may take some time to adjust to living in your home but he will most likely be very happy living with you if you do your best to take good care of him.  Follow these tips and your older dog will adjust to your home very quickly.

Bringing Home An Older Dog courtesy of Dog Articles.

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