Hate Dog Hair But Want A Furry Friend? 6 Shed-Free Dogs That You Can Have

Posted by on Jun 29, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on Hate Dog Hair But Want A Furry Friend? 6 Shed-Free Dogs That You Can Have

Have you been thinking about getting a dog but just can’t bring yourself to do it because of the potential shedding? You don’t want hair all over the place and all over your clothes. If you aren’t very familiar with animals, then you may not know that there are actually some dogs that do not shed hair. So, if you want to get a cute little puppy for your child or would just like a canine companion around the house, here are a few shed-free dogs of all sizes that you may want to consider adopting: Small Breed Dogs That Don’t Shed Maltese – This gentle dog’s origin is Italy, and it can live around 12 to 14 years. It usually won’t get over about seven pounds. You’ll need to brush its hair daily and offer frequent baths to maintain a beautiful coat. Manchester Terrier – This breed comes from England where it was developed to be the terrier of a working man. It will likely live around 15 years and can weigh up to roughly 22 pounds. Weekly grooming will maintain its glossy coat. Medium Breed Dogs That Don’t Shed Standard Schnauzer – This breed comes from Germany and was initially used in the farmyard as a herder. This breed lives around 15 years, and its weight varies, but is always proportionate to its height of 17.5 to 19.5 inches. Grooming is necessary three or four times throughout the year. With highly-developed senses, he makes a great watchdog for a family.   Portuguese Water Dog – This breed originates from Portugal and is a very strong swimmer who loves children. It can live somewhere between 10 and 14 years and weighs anywhere from 35 to 60 pounds, depending on its exact size and diet. It needs to see the groomer four to six times throughout the year and requires brushing a few times a week. Large Breed Dogs That Don’t Shed Komondor – This is a breed from Hungary and looks similar in appearance to a mop with legs. It’s one of those breeds that you often see on televised dog shows. The coat is corded so it cannot be brushed, but your vet will need to explain proper care. They live eight to 12 years and can weigh as much as 120 pounds. They’re excellent country watchdogs thanks to their heritage of guarding the flock. Bouvier Des Flandres – This is a large, intelligent breed that comes from Belgium. It is known to live between 10 and 12 years, and its height measures two feet at the shoulders. These dogs do require daily brushing. They have a protective and loyal nature, which makes them a great watchdog breed. All of the aforementioned dogs have a single coat, rather than fur. This means that the coat will grow until you have it cut by a dog groomer. Therefore, you’ll want to make sure that you are able to maintain the grooming costs of your pet or he’ll look like a scraggly mess, or “Cousin It” from The Addams Family. If you need help in deciding the perfect dog for your personal situation, consult with your local veterinarian for some helpful insight. For more information, contact Animal Care Center of Forest Park or a similar...

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3 Command Training Tips For Pitbulls

Posted by on Jun 12, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on 3 Command Training Tips For Pitbulls

You recently saw a sign that read “Pitbulls for sale,” and, after looking at them you decided to take a one of them home. The American pit bull terrier is a fiercely protective and loyal dog that can quickly become a cherished member of the family who will help keep your loved ones safe. In order to teach a pit bull how to protect you and your loved ones, however, you must train a pit bull to always obey your orders. Training a pit bull goes beyond just simple potty training. Proper training allows a pit bull to learn who they are loyal to and who they should protect. Pit bulls must be taught specific commands so they learn to behave well around others–especially children. Here are 3 tips you should follow when training a pit bull to follow basic commands: Use Specific Commands Don’t confuse your pit bull while training them. Stick to very specific and concise language when issuing commands. Using “no” repeatedly without further descriptors, for example, can be confusing since the dog won’t know what actions you’re talking about specifically. Use phrases like “no bark” or “no bite” to help them understand exactly what you mean. Likewise, use the term “off” instead of “down” when you’re commanding your dog to avoid jumping on people. The term “down” can confuse the dog since it can also be used to instruct them to lay down. Use the Right Language When Issuing Praises The same advice above also follows when rewarding a pit bull for performing the right commands. Be specific about your praises. Phrases like “good dog” can be confusing since the dog won’t necessarily understand what they’re being rewarded for. Giving specific phrases like “good sit” or “good down” help them understand what you mean and help them better understand vocabulary like “sit” and “down.” Offer the Right Rewards Dogs respond well to treats when being trained, but you don’t want to overfeed your pit bull by offering too many treats. Instead, get into a routine where you practice command training right before mealtime. Use their dinner as the reward. Alternatively, treats can be used, but the dog should be hungry during training. This helps the dog quickly learn that they need to be on their best behavior in order to be fed. Train your pit bull using the above tips to help them become an invaluable family member and guard dog. Remember to always reward good behavior and never utilize any harsh training methods. Good, protective dogs are loved ones too, after all, and should be treated as...

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What To Do When Your Cat Goes Into Heat

Posted by on May 20, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | Comments Off on What To Do When Your Cat Goes Into Heat

If you have a female kitten or cat, and she is not yet spayed, you may wonder what to expect if she goes into heat before you have the procedure done. Getting a female cat spayed will ensure she does not have a litter of kittens, and it is also beneficial to her overall health. Here are some signs that your cat is in heat, how to handle it, and what to expect when you have your cat spayed. Is My Cat In Heat? Female cats will start “going into heat” anywhere from six to twelve months of age. This is the fertile time in a cat’s cycle. The first time your cat goes into heat, you may be worried something is wrong with her medically. She will walk around yowling loudly, possibly at all hours of the night. She will seem restless, walking from room to room as if she is looking for something. If she is an outdoor cat, she may try to get outside any time the door opens. She will crouch down on her front legs and walk around commando-style with her rump up in the air. These are all signals that your cat is in heat. How Can I Deal With This? If you do not get your cat spayed, you will need to deal with her going into heat approximately every three weeks. It can be difficult if you have other cats, as the cat in heat will be bothering them quite a bit, trying to entice them to have sexual intercourse with her. If you have un-neutered male cats, they will need to be separated from your female cat for a week to help keep the risk of pregnancy down. It is not a good idea to take the risk at all if you do not want kittens. Neutered male cats will not cause your female cat to get pregnant, but they may still try to have sexual intercourse with her. Spraying your female cat with some water can help keep her distracted, as she will spend her time grooming herself, making her forget she is trying to find a partner. What Can I Expect When Getting My Cat Spayed? If you do not want your cat having kittens, you must get her spayed as soon as she starts displaying the signals that she is old enough to get pregnant. Make an appointment with a veterinarian. They will most likely have you bring in your cat for a few appointments to get shots and make sure she is healthy enough for the operation. The day of the operation, your cat will not be able to drink or eat for several hours beforehand. Your cat will have a general anesthesia while the procedure is performed. Afterwards, your cat will need to stay at the animal hospital for several hours for observation. When you bring your pet home, she will need to be kept away from any other pets for a few days as her incision heals. She may not be very hungry at first and will most likely want to rest. After a day or so, she will bounce back and start gaining...

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Can My Dog Get the Flu?

Posted by on Apr 17, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

This month in the Midwestern U.S., more than 1,000 dogs have been diagnosed with the canine influenza virus. Yes, your dog can get the flu — but fortunately, you can’t get flu from your dog nor can you give the human disease to your canine friend. However, canine influenza is nothing to take lightly. Out of the more than 1,000 cases identified in the Chicago area, six have died because of respiratory difficulties. The strain, influenza A H3N2, was first identified in Asia in 2006 and had not been seen in the U.S. before this 2015 outbreak. It has been seen in cats (though not in the U.S.) but there is no evidence it can migrate to humans. What are the Symptoms of Canine Influenza? Dog flu looks a lot like kennel cough, but if your dog has been vaccinated for Bordatella (which causes kennel cough), you’ll know that’s not likely to be the case. Symptoms include: Persistent cough lasting for up to 3 weeks. Nasal discharge. Fever, which can get high in severe cases. Difficulty breathing. Fatalities occur in about 5 to 8 percent of cases, usually because the disease causes pneumonia and isn’t caught or treated quickly. How is Canine Influenza Spread? Your dog can get the flu from an infected dog sneezing or coughing nearby. The virus can also live on chew toys, food bowls and other hard surfaces for up to 48 hours. Right now, experts estimate that around 20 to 25 percent of dogs can get infected and not have any symptoms. These dogs can still spread the disease while they carry the virus. All dogs, regardless of age or breed, can get the virus. How Can Canine Influenza Be Prevented? If you want to keep your dog safe, keep it at home, especially if you are in an area where outbreaks have been occurring. Places where dogs may pick up diseases include dog parks, boarding kennels and grooming facilities. You should also wash your hands carefully if you touch other dogs before you pet your own dog. But, much like the human flu, you can’t always stay in a sterile environment. What’s most important is that you watch for symptoms and see your veterinarian if your dog is experiencing a bad cough. Some forms of antibiotics can help lessen the severity of the disease and prevent pneumonia from developing. Talk to your veterinarian (like those at TLC For Pets) if you have any questions about canine influenza in your area or if your dog is exhibiting any...

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Is Your Dog On Antibiotics? Why You Should Give Them Yogurt Treats

Posted by on Mar 31, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

If you’re like most people, it breaks your heart to see your dog sick. But it does happen occasionally, and it’s something all pet owners need to deal with. If your dog has an infection, your vet will likely give your dog antibiotics, just as a human doctor gives you. While the antibiotics typically do a good job in getting rid of your dog’s infection, other problems can arise because of them. This guide explains how plain yogurt can help your dog counteract the side effects of antibiotics and help it feel happier as well. Antibiotics Deplete Good Bacteria When you’re on antibiotics, you know that they work to kill the bacteria causing the infection. They work the same way in your dog. Within a few days, your furry family member will be feeling a lot better. When you’ve finished giving it all the antibiotics, the offending bacteria is completely eradicated. Even though these wonderful medications attack and kill the infection, they also kill off the good bacteria in your dog’s gut. This could lead to other illnesses such as yeast infections, gastrointestinal infections and viruses. Yogurt is Full of Acidophilus If you’re giving your dog antibiotics, give them a treat of some plain yogurt a couple hours later. Do this after each administration of antibiotics. Yogurt is full of acidophilus, better known as a probiotic. These cultures replenish your dog’s gut with the good bacteria it needs to counteract the effects of antibiotics. Just like yogurt and other acidophilus products work for your health, they work for your dog’s as well. The only caveat is that you shouldn’t give them the yogurt at the same time as the antibiotic, because the good bacteria will just get eaten up by the medication. Your Dog Will Love the Extra Treat In addition to being good for your dog, yogurt can make them happier as well. They won’t know why you are giving them this extra treat. They just know that they aren’t feeling well, but you are giving them something special. However, if your dog won’t eat the yogurt, you can give them an acidophilus pill wrapped up in a piece of bacon, cheese or other food treats. Watch your dog carefully for signs of other illnesses while giving them the antibiotics. Most dogs do well on them, and your vet will likely only give them these drugs if it’s absolutely necessary. Ask your dog’s vet if they have any objections to giving your dog yogurt or for more ideas on raising your dog’s good bacteria in their gut while on antibiotics. For more information, speak with experts like Lincoln Way Animal...

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Need a Service Dog? Learn About Which Dogs Pair Best With Your Needs

Posted by on Mar 4, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

To most people, owning a dog is one of the greatest pleasures in life. Other people find them to be a necessity. Not only can these animals offer emotional support and friendship, they can also help those with disabilities by performing certain tasks or helping them with daily life. If you need a service dog for a family member, you’ll need to know which breed to obtain. There are two types of service dogs and this guide explains which types of breeds are best for each. Physical Needs Service Breeds Most physical needs service dogs are trained to protect and help their handler. Golden retrievers, German shepherds and other large breeds work to help the blind walk by leading them in the direction they need to go without running into things. The best breeds for service dogs are gentle and not aggressive to humans unless the person they service is in danger.  Smaller to medium breeds are great dogs for the deaf. They alert their handler when their telephone rings, an alarm of any kind goes off or if the doorbell rings. They do this by using their paws to get their owner’s attention. Large breeds also help those who need assistance standing because they can handle pressure when a human needs them to hold still so they can pull themselves up. Smaller breeds help those with physical disabilities in other ways. Dog trainers often train fox terriers and poodles to bring certain things to the owner such as slippers, the newspaper and medicine bottles. Psychiatric Needs Service Breeds Psychiatric service dogs can be any size or breed depending on what the need is. For example, those suffering anxiety can benefit from a Yorkie or poodle. Any small breed that a person can take on an airplane works well for anxiety attacks. On the other hand, children with autism might benefit from a large, strong dog. A Newfoundland is very strong and can pull a child or adult out of a fire or other dangerous situation. Determine which type of service dog is best to help you or your loved one. Keep in mind that most service dogs begin their training when they are puppies and you or someone else should be the designated person to take them to their vet checkups and provide other pet care. Ask a vet who specializes to assist you in picking the right breed and training them properly. For more tips and suggestions, consult with clinics such as Mokena Animal Clinic,...

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Best Ways To Take Care Of Your Puppy’s Teeth

Posted by on Feb 18, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

Dental hygiene is just as important for dogs as it is for people, and yet many dog owners neglect their dog’s dental care until gum disease and tooth decay has set in. This can cause your dog unnecessary pain and suffering, and can impact his or her health in the future. To take care of your dog’s teeth, it’s best to start when he or she is a puppy. These tips will help you take establish a regular cleaning routine and help you care for your dog’s dental hygiene. Start Brushing Your Puppy’s Teeth Establishing a regular tooth brushing routine is an important part of puppy care. Training your puppy to allow you to brush his or her teeth with help you maintain good hygiene as your dog ages. Most puppies must get used to having their teeth touched by their owners before they will accept having their teeth brushed. To start off, use a washcloth or gauze to rub the sides of your dog’s teeth. Do this in short bursts only a few days per week, until your dog is used to the sensation of you rubbing his or her teeth. When this is finished, reward your puppy with a dog treat. After your dog has become used to the sensation of his or her teeth being rubbed, buy a puppy tooth brush and toothpaste formulated for dogs. Allow your dog to lick the toothpaste from your fingers, then put a little toothpaste on the brush and rub your puppy’s teeth with the bristles of the toothbrush in a circular motion. Your puppy may not tolerate long brushings at first. Make it your goal to lengthen the amount of time you spend brushing his or her teeth with each time you brush. Do this a few times per week. Rewarding your puppy with a treat after each brushing. Buy Your Puppy Teeth-Cleaning Toys Some dog chew toys are designed specifically to strengthen your dog’s teeth and gums. Buying your dog these toys can be a good way to ensure that your dog’s teeth are regularly cleaned and that your dog is properly entertained. Talk to Your Puppy’s Veterinarian about Professional Cleanings Ask your puppy’s veterinarian such as Spring Hill Veterinary Clinic about professional teeth cleaning services. Ask your puppy’s vet how often he or she recommends these services, and if he or she has any other recommendations for your puppy’s tooth care. Make your puppy’s first tooth cleaning appointment as soon as the veterinarian recommends...

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5 Great Tips For Helping Your Obese Dog Lose Weight

Posted by on Feb 6, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

An overweight dog may look cute and cuddly, but it can negatively affect his health in many ways. Just like humans, overweight dogs can suffer from diabetes, heart disease and arthritis. If your pooch is carrying extra pounds, you should help him get back in shape. Here are five great tips for helping your obese dog lose weight. Practice Portion Control Humans are not the only ones who can benefit from portion control. If you control your dog’s food portions, he will lose weight. Instead of pouring his dog food freely into a bowl, use a measuring tool to properly portion it. After just a few weeks of portion control, you will notice a difference in your dog’s weight. Exercise Your Dog Your dog will lose weight faster if you incorporate exercise into his daily routine. Exercise will help burn more calories; it will also increase your dog’s energy and strength. For example, you can take your pooch for a 20-minute walk every day. You could also play Frisbee with your dog or let him play in the yard with other dogs. Limit Treats All dogs love treats, but they will not do his waistline any favors. That is why you should give your dog as few treats as possible. If you want to give him a snack before a meal, feed him something healthy such as green beans, carrots or apples.  Feed Your Dog Good Quality Kibble Good quality dog food is a bit more expensive, but it is a lot better for your pooch. Whole dog food contains more natural ingredients and fewer fillers, so your dog will feel fuller faster. If you feed your dog good quality kibble, he will lose weight, and he will be less likely to develop diseases later on. Do not Leave Food in His Bowl If you want your dog to develop good eating habits, you should never leave kibble in his bowl all day. If you do this, your dog will just eat when he has nothing else to do. Only put food in your dog’s food when it is meal time. Helping your dog lose weight does not have to be a challenge. If you follow these helpful tips, you can help your dog become a lot healthier. However, if your pooch is still having trouble dropping the pounds, make an appointment with his veterinarian right away. For more information, contact a clinic such as North Collier Animal...

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Aiding Your Pet’s Achy Joints

Posted by on Jan 28, 2015 in Blog, Pets & Animals | 0 comments

As pets grow older, sometimes they begin to slow down and become less active and spunky than in their younger years. If you’ve noticed your pet is reluctant to play, go on walks, use the litter box or move around, your pet may be suffering from osteoarthritis, a fairly common joint disorder in older pets. Read on to learn more about the disease, its symptoms, and what you can do to ease your pet’s pain. How It Develops Osteoarthritis is the byproduct of wear and tear on your pet’s joints throughout their life, and may occur sooner in pets who are overweight or obese. When they’re young, cartilage sits between the two bones on either end of the joint, cushioning the bones. As the years go on, cartilage often begins to break down, causing irritation in the joint and surrounding tissues as the bones begin to rub together when the joint flexes. Symptoms Cats may sometimes hide their symptoms, but both species will likely experience these symptoms: Unwillingness To Move – Your pet may be less willing to play, climb stairs, walk outside or even walk the distance to their food or litter box. Clumsiness – Pets who are in discomfort may limp or try to avoid putting pressure on the limb that’s hurting, which may make them appear clumsy. Swollen Joints – When the disease progresses and is left untreated, the result may be visibly swollen joints. Treatment There are treatment options available to both cats and dogs, but they differ depending on which one you’re treating. Dogs can benefit from anti-inflammatory medications such as NSAIDs, which help to reduce pain and the inflammation in the joint. Physical therapy with a veterinarian can also be helpful. Some vet therapies for your dog’s joints include walking on a treadmill that’s underwater to strengthen the joints while keeping impact on them to a minimum. Unfortunately, cats sometimes have bad reactions to NSAIDs, so they’re not a great choice. Instead, focus on making her comfortable and encourage her to walk short distances and climb or play when she feels up to it. Both species may benefit from pet acupuncture to reduce discomfort. Pet acupuncture is generally performed by or under the supervision of a veterinarian, so it’s safe for your pet. Acupuncture also avoids potential side effects from chemicals or medications. If your pet is overweight, work with a veterinarian to develop a weight-loss plan. Reducing excess weight on the joints can preserve any cartilage that’s left and reduce discomfort. Finally, joint supplements like glucosamine and chondroitin may be useful in supporting and regrowing cartilage in joints. Osteoarthritis may simply be a part of getting older for many pets, but that doesn’t mean your furry child has to live out their senior days in pain. Consult with a veterinarian to see if your pet is suffering from osteoarthritis and develop an action plan to reduce their discomfort. For more information, contact Ashworth Road Animal Hospital PC or a similar...

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Four Cancer Treatment Options For Dogs

Posted by on Jan 22, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

If your dog has been screened and found to have cancer, you likely know how heart breaking this can be. Cancer is something that can be very scary since it is unpredictable and moves quickly. Luckily, there are many treatment options that you can discuss with your vet in order to come up with the best solution. These cancer treatment options include: Chemotherapy: Chermotherapy refers to using drugs that will help to treat the cancer. These drugs would be anti-cancer and cell-killing. When this treatment method comes up between you and your vet, you may begin to think about how this treatment usually causes discomfort and horrible side effects in humans. Not to worry though, this treatment method is much different for dogs. Dogs usually begin to feel better right away without all the horrible side effects. Radiation Therapy: Radiation therapy is the use of a machine to administer radiation into the tumor in your dog’s body. This is becoming a more common treatment method for dogs since it typically is a more affordable option. Plus, radiation therapy is usually effective. Surgery: Your vet may suggest surgery for your dog’s cancer in the case that the tumor can easily be removed without causing extreme damage. This may even be suggested if the tumor-infested organ can be removed. Of course, your vet should discuss any possible side effects that would come from the specific surgery your dog would need.  Palliative Options: Palliative options would be suggested by your vet in the case that your dog is extremely ill from the cancer and the other treatment options aren’t viable options for a cure. This usually happens if the cancer is not found early enough. Palliative options are simply a combination of different treatment options that would be used to keep your dog as comfortable as possible for the rest of their life. This will help to make this hard time easier on you, since you will not have to see your dog in as much pain. By knowing that there are quite a few treatment options for your dog’s cancer, you can be more comfortable discussing what options are best for your dog. It can also be helpful and put your mind at ease to know that there are at least three options that are extremely effective in most cases, so long as your dog’s cancer hasn’t advanced into stage four. For more information check out the site for this animal...

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