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Is Your Dog Hydrated: What Dog Owners Need to Know about Hydration

This is not enough water for your dog Water is essential for good health, yet many dogs are chronically dehydrated.  Here, everything a dog owner needs to know about dehydration and dogs will be discussed.  Why is Hydration for Dogs Important? Adequate hydration is necessary for all mammals because it aids in nutrient transport and absorption, proper digestion and metabolism, and body temperature regulation.  Dogs that are dehydrated can suffer serious health problems such as diarrhea, vomiting, heat stroke, heart failure, kidney disease, seizures, and death.  How do Dogs Become Dehydrated? Unlike humans, dogs are unable to carry a water bottle with them for easy hydration throughout the day.  Instead, they must wait for times when cool, clean water is available (Amazon carries some nice dog water bottles that can be found here).  Additional factors that affect hydration include climate, body size and shape, coat condition, age, pre-existing health conditions,...
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How to Read Dog Food Labels: Is Your Dog’s Food Healthy?

  One of the easiest ways to ensure your dog lives a long and healthy life is to make sure you are feeding a high-quality dog food.  But, with all the available options, where do you start?  Reading the dog food label is the first step when ensuring your dog’s food is healthy.  Listed here is everything a dog owner should know when reading the label on a bag (or can) of dog food. Which Nutrients do Dogs Need? Before you learn how to read a dog food label, it is important to know the types of nutrients that dogs require.  While dogs have similar basic needs as humans, the macronutrient ratios required for a dog to thrive varies. Protein The most important nutrient in a dog’s diet is protein.  Unlike humans, most of a dog’s energy is converted from protein.  In addition, protein is also necessary for supporting a...
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Dog Proof Trash Can Comparison – Plus How to DIY

dog gets intot he trash
My large dog like most others loves garbage and it drives me crazy to have trash all over the kitchen every time I walked in the door. It seemed like he hits the garbage every time I would turn my back. We ended up putting our trash can in the garage for almost a year before I broke down and figured there had to be a better solution. I was amazed when doing research looking for a dog proof trash can, that there were not as many options as I thought there would be. So to save you time, I wanted to list the dog proof trash can that we selected and a list of the other options out there. But, before we get to that, I want to cover a couple things that may help you solve the underlying issues. If you are in a hurry, I have put...
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How to Prevent Your Dog from Being Lost or Stolen

Every dog owner’s worst nightmare is to have a beloved pup be lost or stolen.  However, in many cases there are ways to prevent these occurrences.  The following are tips for decreasing the chances of your dog being lost or stolen. Never Leave Your Pet Unattended One of the main reasons dogs are lost or stolen is because they were left without supervision.  If you have a fenced-in yard, your dog may find a way to climb over, dig under, or even go through a fence; especially if something intriguing is on the other side.  Electronic fences can malfunction, and tie-outs can break.  A dog left alone in a yard can also be tempting for thieves, particularly if your dog is a rare or expensive breed.  If dog fighting is common in your area, any breed of dog may be at risk. Commonly, people leave their dogs in their car;...
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Dogs and Children: Dog Bite Prevention

Unfortunately, children represent the largest demographic of people affected by serious dog bites annually.  A conservative estimate is that 400,000 children receive medical treatment in the US each year after a dog attack; however, many cases go unreported for fear of the dog’s welfare.  While no dog bite is ever inexcusable, the fact of the matter is that many attacks can be prevented. Why Are Children Affected More Often Than Adults? Children represent chaotic unpredictability to pets, which can be extremely nerve wracking – especially to an anxious dog.  Dogs have certain drives that are evolutionarily ingrained, such as chasing smaller animals or becoming agitated in the presence of loud shrieks.  In addition, children are less likely to be aware of personal space, and can threaten an animal by inadvertently crowding a dog’s face or food bowl. Rules for Children Never approach a dog during mealtime.  This rule holds true...
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10 Most Poisonous Plants for Dogs

Indoor and outdoor plants are common in most homes thanks to improved air quality and aesthetically pleasing colors and shapes.  However, many common houseplants are poisonous to pets, and should be kept out of reach of animals.  Some of the most poisonous plants – along with their symptoms – are described below. Aloe Vera Aloe is typically kept in the kitchen as a quick, natural remedy in case of burns.  However, if your dog happens to eat a leaf of this plant, beware that he or she will experience gastrointestinal distress such as vomiting and diarrhea. Autumn Crocus Not to be confused with the spring crocus variety which is only mildly toxic to pets, the Autumn Crocus is poisonous and can lead to vomiting, bleeding in the GI tract, organ failure, and respiratory distress. Azalea These pretty pink flowers are extremely toxic to dogs, and even the ingestion of one...
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7 Commands Every Dog Must Know

 Training your dog is not just a matter of him or her having good house manners – it can also mean the difference between life and death.  The seven most important commands to teach your dog, as well as tips for training, are discussed below. Sit Why is “sit” such an important command?  When your dog is getting ready to jump on a new person that walks into your home, asking for “sit” can keep all four of your dog’s feet on the ground.  In addition, by utilizing “sit” as a pre-requisite for other daily rewards, such as going outside or having the food bowl set down at dinner time, this simple command can create a well-behaved dog. Stay Not only can “stay” be useful during an unexpected situation (such as a broken dish in the kitchen), teaching your dog how to stay also reinforces independence.  Dogs with a strong...
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Rules for New Dog Owners

Pet ownership has an entirely different set of rules and responsibilities beyond simply caring for the animal.  An often overlooked part of owning a pet is the way in which dog and owner interact with the world around them.  Listed below are five rules of etiquette that all dog owners should follow in order to avoid conflict and be good citizens. Always Ask Before An Introduction When approaching an unfamiliar dog while out on a walk, always ask the other dog’s owner if it is okay for your pet to say hello.  Just because your dog is friendly does not mean that the other person’s dog enjoys the company of other canines, as well.  If you are using a retractable leash, shorten the lead and lock it in place, as the other dog may perceive a pet with more freedom as a threat. Always Keep Your Dog On-Leash Even if...
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Puppy Proofing Your Home

Deciding to bring home a furry new family member should be considered just as seriously as having a new baby of the hairless variety. Puppies are fun, adorable and endlessly amusing, but they can also be loud, messy and mischievous. Plan ahead by teaching everyone in your household what is expected of them when your new pet arrives. From a dog’s eye view there are “goodies” and “toys” to explore in every room, many of which pose health risks to a curious pup. The Living/Family Room: This is where we do most of our, well, living. Areas where we congregate tend to collect most of our human debris. Loose change, junk food scraps, and electronic equipment scattered on the floor and between couch cushions could cause intestinal blockages and potentially serious illness. Instruct each family member to pick up their belongings and secure them safely out of puppy’s reach. The...
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Why Muzzle Train? The Top Three Reasons You Should Use a Dog Muzzle

I know – you’ve got the best dog in the world and he doesn’t bite. So why should you bother to train him to wear a dog muzzle? Dog muzzles have been used for centuries. The obvious advantage is to decrease the risk of bites or liabilities when you have a dog that might bite. So isn’t this antiquated gadget pretty useless today? I intend to convince you that not only are dog muzzles still useful in today’s world, but that every dog needs to know how to wear one comfortably and that EVERY dog owner should learn how to teach his dog to do things that are a little uncomfortable at first. Here are the top three reasons for teaching your dog to wear a muzzle: 1. The MOST IMPORTANT reason of all – you should be a competent enough trainer that you don’t have to force a dog...
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