Puppies and Worms: A Not So Uncommon Occurrence

If you have adopted your puppy from a shelter, or purchased one through a breeder, you will notice that one of the “selling points” is that he or she has been “dewormed”. Now, if you have a puppy that did not go through any medical care before you, then you may be shocked to learn that your puppy has worms. Even if you cannot see them or if your puppy seems healthy, he or she has worms. All puppies do because they are born with them. There are at least 2 common worms that are congenital and passed from mother to pup. Other types of worms come from fleas, soil, water and plants. Facts about worms: •    Your puppy having worms does not mean he or she is a “lemon”. •    All worms are very hard to detect, and usually need to be seen microscopically before they can be diagnosed....
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Dog Crate Training

Every dog is a descendant from wolves. They have an inherent need not only to be part of a pack, but also to have safe place as their den. This is where crates come in. While some owners find crate training to be essential, others may not. It’s important to remember that crate training, though helpful for the dog in many respects, is not a catch all solution for things like separation anxiety or house training. Reasons to Crate Train Crates give dogs a place of their own, to sleep, to take refuge during an upsetting incident (like a thunderstorm or when a stranger enters the home), and to give them a safe, confined space to inhabit if they have to stay home alone for any stretch of time. And while crates cannot immediately solve issues with anxiety, bad chewing behaviors, or house training, they are a good jumping off...
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Overly Excited Dogs and How to Settle them Down

People love their dogs no matter what they may do or how they may behave. The issue usually arises when other people are involved. Either you do not want to scare your friends and guests, or you do not want a lawsuit to ensue because your dog jumped on and knocked over that little old lady. So, what can you do? There is a solution. One caveat; this solution takes consistency, something that can be very difficult to generate in our modern lives. The advice to you here is, even if you fall off the horse, get back up. Even if you “forget” to train for several weeks, get back up. Dogs are amazing and they learn almost in spite of us. Here are some facts to help you win the battle of excited behavior with your dog. Establish a Routine:  If you have kids, then you already know the...
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How to Stop a Dog From Digging

Dogs are great, and we love them. But one difficult behavior to control is digging; especially if your dogs has separation anxiety and is left home alone during the day while you are at work or school. They key to controlling digging is to understand digging from your dog’s point of view. Why are they digging? It may be for entertainment (dogs get bored when left alone) or it may be because they are after a critter of some kind. Burrowing animals are irresistible for a dog. Stop them, and the digging will stop. Here are some ideas: Gopher Proof Your Yard:  Burrowing animals, like gophers are very hard to kill. They are elusive and smart, making them even more irresistible for dogs. One way to stop digging is to make your yard inaccessible to these critters. The first thing is to scare the gophers away for a few days...
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Separation Anxiety in Dogs: How to Deal with It

If you have ever come home to a completely destroyed house, a ripped-up couch, a table in shambles, clothing and shoes torn to pieces, you know what it’s like to have a dog with separation anxiety. While it might not always manifest in that extreme manner, dogs with separation anxiety are prone to destruction. Underlying Causes Dogs are just like wolves, they feel an inherent need to be with their pack. Unlike wolves, they are domesticated, and you have become their pack. Even if it is just you and Rover, he recognizes that you are the sole member of his group, and when you go away, it can be very stressful. Separation anxiety can develop the moment you first leave your dog home alone. It may also be a result of having been abandoned at a shelter (if you adopt a shelter dog), or a stressful boarding experience. Most notably,...
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Dog Barking: Why It Is Not Always a Bad Thing

Barking dogs have become so synonymous with danger that owners will often get nervous just hearing their hound let off a yip. In reality, dogs bark for a myriad of reasons, only one of which being when they feel threatened. It is how they communicate, not only with each other, but also with you. For example, my dogs always bark when I get home from work. It is how they show excitement and recognition. Greeting Barking As with my dogs, many dogs will bark as a greeting. If you take your dog to a dog park, for example, you will see dogs barking at each other in a very non-threatening way. They are just saying hello and acknowledging one another. Dogs may bark when friends or strangers come up to the house (keep in mind that they cannot always immediately tell which is which), or even just in excitement seeing...
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Indestructible Dog Toys: Man’s Real Best Friend

Dogs of all sizes can rip apart dog toys, but our two large breed dogs are especially voracious when it comes to digging into a toy. Before we discovered sturdier toys, we were replacing their stuffed animals every week. On one occasion, we bought our older dog a stuffed squirrel, sent her outside with it, and in less than hour, she had all of the limbs ripped off and the stuffing scattered around the backyard. It was then that we began our question for an indestructible dog toy. Here are some of the brands we found and now love! Kong If you have a dog who’s an avid chewer, you know that you need something that can survive being chewed, shook, thrown, whacked, and clawed. Kong has an entire line of rubber toys designed to withstand even the most enthusiastic dog. They even have a wide variety of designs and...
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Stopping a Dog from Jumping on People

We’ve all seen it. We open the door and our dog is so excited that he jumps up, digging his claws into the clothes of your visitor. He jumps on you when you get home from work, come back from the store, or when he’s excited about a walk. It’s a show of enthusiasm, and this is usually why people have such a hard time training their dogs to stop jumping up on people. First, because we don’t want to discipline our puppies for doing something we find adorable, and second, because once they are fully grown, it is difficult to chastise them for being affectionate. They want to say hello and greet you like they would greet any member of the pack, by licking your face. And where is your face? Much higher than his face, so he has to jump to reach it. Whether your dog is small...
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A Tired Dog is a Happy Dog

Not unlike humans, if dogs have too much time on their hands (paws) they are likely to get into trouble. Large breeds are especially likely to grow restless, bored, and anxious when they do not have enough physical activity throughout the day—that’s not to say you won’t find a smaller breed chewing on the leg of your favorite chair if she hasn’t had a walk. Of course, not all behavioral problems can be solved simply by adding more exercise into your dog’s routine, but all of the issues caused by boredom will be. It may be cliché, but tired dogs are happy dogs. They crave activity, and when they don’t get enough, our dogs will start to act out. It can even be more sophisticated than that. When you take the time to exercise your dog, they feel loved and content, having plenty of attention from their owner. How can...
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So Your Dog Chews Everything, Ways to Stop it

If you’ve ever come home from work and found the legs of your chairs and table torn to pieces, you know how frustrating it is to have a dog who chews. You leave him alone for an hour and when you return, he has destroyed three pairs of shoes. We love our dogs, but a dog with a chewing habit can be a menace. Some people will simply give up and drop their hound off at the nearest shelter, citing that he is just too troublesome to keep around the house. This isn’t fair to your dog, however, who probably doesn’t even understand that he’s doing something wrong. Whatever your dog chews on, from wooden furniture, to pillows, to clothes, to shoes, to your children’s toys, you can correct these behaviors once you understand the underlying cause and how to encourage your dog not to chew on your prize possession,...
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