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Owning a Dog Has All Sorts of Benefits (Beyond the Snuggles)

Owning a Dog

You’re happy. You don’t feel lonely. You’re active. You find yourself smiling more. If you’re a dog owner,  you instinctively know that you’ve got it good. Dog ownership isn’t just about the fun, it’s about enhancing your life and sharing it with another being – in this case, a furball who wants to sit in your lap, lick your face all night long and protect the house (even if they’re just 10 pounds).

No, you’re not crazy and you’re not just bitten by the Doggie Love Bug. Science backs your claims as does other research: there are a billion wonderful benefits of dog ownership. Here, we’ve gathered just a few. Read More

Pet Ownership: Is It Right For You?

While pet ownership is a joy for both the owner and the pet, it is also a big commitment. Many people adopt a dog or cat, only to later discover that the responsibility is too much for them to handle. Sometimes people simply don’t have the time or resources to take care of an animal, but it usually comes down to preference more than anything. For example, many pet owners pick a pet from a local shelter, giving primary consideration to appearance. Later, they find that the animal’s temperament doesn’t mesh well with their own.

Thankfully, it’s easy to prevent this situation if you do your research. Before adopting, here are some questions you should ask yourself to make sure pet ownership is right for you. Read More

How to Keep Your Dog off Your Couch

Dog on Couch

Why is your couch your refuge at the end of a hard day? Obvious isn’t it? It’s soft and comfortable that you sink your aching limbs and body into it for a while before doing anything else. Is it any different for your pet dog? Your dog is not the biggest fan of the hard floor and naturally prefers your living room couch over anything else. While you do adore your pet, you would like to sit on a couch that’s not covered with mud, hair and doesn’t reek of ‘doggy-smells’. Keeping your dog off the couch could take some doing and can be quite a challenge.

There are many things that you can do to restrict pet-access to your couch, so let’s take a look at a few. Read More

5 Foods for Dogs With Diarrhea

rice

Most dogs experience diarrhea at some point in their lives. If the diarrhea is bloody, see your vet right away. However, you can treat milder cases of upset stomach at home. These five foods might help your dog to feel better.

1. White Rice

White rice is easy for dogs (and humans!) to digest. It contains soluble fiber that helps to soak up water in the bowel, which can help to combat diarrhea. Unlike brown rice and other grains, white rice contains very little insoluble fiber, which can irritate a sensitive stomach. Boil rice in water and allow it to cool a little before serving it to your dog.

2. Pumpkin

Pumpkin is another good source of soluble fiber, which is a useful home remedy for diarrhea. Serving canned pumpkin is the easiest way to give your dog the benefits of this useful food. You can also boil fresh pumpkin until it is soft and mash it into a puree. Be sure to let it cool before you serve it to your dog.

3. Egg

Eggs are a good source of protein for dogs that aren’t feeling up to eating their usual food. Never give your dog raw eggs, as they sometimes contain harmful bacteria that could make the diarrhea worse. Instead, boil the eggs and mash them up in the dog’s bowl.

4. Lean Meat

When your dog is feeling up to eating meat again, stick to low-fat options like chicken breast or extra-lean ground beef. Too much fat can irritate an already sensitive digestive system. However, lean meat is a good source of protein.

5. Yogurt

Plain live yogurt can help your dog to recover from diarrhea, and even help to prevent future incidents. The beneficial bacteria in the yogurt colonize the gut, helping to crowd out harmful bacteria that cause diarrhea. Be sure to give only plain yogurt, rather than anything flavored with sugar or fruit, which could be harmful to your dog.

Next time your dog suffers from an upset stomach, try feeding these foods to aid recovery. If the diarrhea continues, see your vet to find out what is wrong with your dog.

4 Preventative Health Strategies to Protect Your Puppy’s Future Health

New puppy

You know what they say, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” — and when it comes to your dog, you’ll want them to be as happy and healthy as possible. That is why you should implement key strategies into your dog’s life, beginning when they’re a puppy.

Of course, these strategies are most effective when implemented during the early stages of a dog’s development. However, it is never too late to focus on your dog’s health, making changes that will impact their well-being and longevity.

Consider These 4 Health Strategies to Protect Your Growing Puppy Today

Unfortunately, our four-legged friends age much more rapidly than we do. This means that in one human year, a dog will age much more rapidly than we would, increasing their risk of potential health complications. This is why preventative measures are so important.

From regular examinations to optimal dental care, it is important that you maintain these health strategies throughout your puppy’s life. The following strategies are imperative when aiming to protect your dog long-term.

1. Prevent Fleas

Fleas are essentially parasites that live on your dog, feeding on their blood. Being more than just irritating, fleas can actually cause a number of health issues for your dog (and pets in general). Most commonly, a dog will react due to an allergy. However, fleas can also cause internal infections.

There are a number of solutions available, including Sentinel. This once-a-month tablet helps prevent everything from fleas to hookworm, whipworm to heartworm. If you are trying to get rid of ticks or mites, please refer to this chart.

2. Be Proactive Against Heartworm

Speaking of heartworm, this is one area you cannot ignore. This disease can be fatal and is caused by worms that live in the lungs, heart, and blood vessels of not just dogs but also cats, ferrets, and a number of other mammals.

In this case, prevention is critical. Once a dog becomes a host, if left untreated, heartworms will continue to mate and produce offspring. Sadly, this can cause long-term damage to critical organs, impacting a dog’s health and quality of life. Once again, preventative medication is available.

Related: Heartworm Disease In Dogs — What You Must Know

3. Provide Proper Nutrition

Shockingly, it is estimated that between 20 to 60 percent of American dogs and cats are not just overweight or obese, but are also at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. This is directly linked to the foods they eat. Of course, your puppy will have different nutritional needs in comparison to a senior dog.

Here are a few great guides:

Overall, you want to feed your puppy a wholesale diet that is void of fillers and chemicals. Be mindful of the food you purchase and ensure that your growing pup is getting all of the vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and enzymes they need. Feed them what is biologically appropriate, be aware of their changing needs as they age.

4. Practice Positive Skin Health

Your puppy will likely be exposed to a number of environmental irritants, which can cause allergies. From ringworm to yeast infections, there are many ways that your dog’s skin can be affected, leading to itching, discomfort, or more serious complications. You can learn more about the top 10 skin conditions in dogs (and how to treat them) here.

Groom your dog, washing them at least 1-2 a month. Use a hypoallergenic shampoo and brush his/her coat frequently. As suggested above, you should also consider flea and tick preventative measures, while paying particular attention to artificial ingredients in your dog’s food.

Focus on long-term health when your dog is a puppy, giving them the best possible chance of having a long, healthy life. After all, Roger Caras said it best, “Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.”

 

Sources

https://www.heartwormsociety.org/heartworms-in-dogs

https://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/01/health/01brod.html