Dogs

Heart worm prevention

Beef flavored chunks are available in addition to the beef flavored tablets or solutions that can be given orally to the dogs as a measure against the incidence of heart worms. Avoid mosquito bites by providing proper mosquito-proof shelter facilities to the dogs.

Just plan whether there is any need to go for the heart worm prevention though out the year or only in some months of the year. For example, in case of some countries, the mosquitoes may be dormant in most of the colder months.

However, in some countries, this is not a position. Many a times, medications are available for oral administration to prevent heart worms along with hookworms etc. Such oral medications need to be taken as per the instructions. However, be cautious about the occurrence of any adverse drug reactions in the dog given with such prophylactic therapy.

Adverse event reports need to be sent if you come across any sorts of adverse drug reactions in your dog during the preventive treatment.
Soft beef flavored tablets are highly preferred by the pet animals as the preventive measure against heart worms. The pet owner needs to consult a veterinarian if the dose for the prophylaxis of heart worm is missed for few months. In such occasions, the pet animal needs to undergo the heart worm test.

Heartgard, sentinel, interceptor, revolution, etc. are available in the commercial fields as drugs for the preventive measure. Avoid water stagnation around the dog shelter and the bushes around the area that facilitate mosquito breeding. This test needs to be carried out in consultation with a veterinarian who is specialized in the pet animal health care and medicine.

As a preventive measure for the heart worms, the dogs need to be tested for the evidence of these worms at an age of six months. Real beef chew able tablets are available containing medical agent like ivermectin.

GENERAL HISTORY OF DOGS.

There is no incongruity in the idea that in the very earliest period of man’s habitation of this world he made a friend and companion of some sort of aboriginal representative of our modern dog, and that in return for its aid in protecting him from wilder animals, and in guarding his sheep and goats, he gave it a share of his food, a corner in his dwelling, and grew to trust it and care for it. Probably the animal was originally little else than an unusually gentle jackal, or an ailing wolf driven by its companions from the wild marauding pack to seek shelter in alien surroundings. One can well conceive the possibility of the partnership beginning in the circumstance of some helpless whelps being brought home by the early hunters to be tended and reared by the women and children. Dogs introduced into the home as playthings for the children would grow to regard themselves, and be regarded, as members of the family

In nearly all parts of the world traces of an indigenous dog family are found, the only exceptions being the West Indian Islands, Madagascar, the eastern islands of the Malayan Archipelago, New Zealand, and the Polynesian Islands, where there is no sign that any dog, wolf, or fox has existed as a true aboriginal animal. In the ancient Oriental lands, and generally among the early Mongolians, the dog remained savage and neglected for centuries, prowling in packs, gaunt and wolf-like, as it prowls today through the streets and under the walls of every Eastern city. No attempt was made to allure it into human companionship or to improve it into docility. It is not until we come to examine the records of the higher civilisations of Assyria and Egypt that we discover any distinct varieties of canine form.

The dog was not greatly appreciated in Palestine, and in both the Old and New Testaments it is commonly spoken of with scorn and contempt as an « unclean beast. » Even the familiar reference to the Sheepdog in the Book of Job « But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to set with the dogs of my flock » is not without a suggestion of contempt, and it is significant that the only biblical allusion to the dog as a recognised companion of man occurs in the apocryphal Book of Tobit (v. 16), « So they went forth both, and the young man’s dog with them. »

The great multitude of different breeds of the dog and the vast differences in their size, points, and general appearance are facts which make it difficult to believe that they could have had a common ancestry. One thinks of the difference between the Mastiff and the Japanese Spaniel, the Deerhound and the fashionable Pomeranian, the St. Bernard and the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier, and is perplexed in contemplating the possibility of their having descended from a common progenitor. Yet the disparity is no greater than that between the Shire horse and the Shetland pony, the Shorthorn and the Kerry cattle, or the Patagonian and the Pygmy; and all dog breeders know how easy it is to produce a variety in type and size by studied selection.

In order properly to understand this question it is necessary first to consider the identity of structure in the wolf and the dog. This identity of structure may best be studied in a comparison of the osseous system, or skeletons, of the two animals, which so closely resemble each other that their transposition would not easily be detected.

The spine of the dog consists of seven vertebrae in the neck, thirteen in the back, seven in the loins, three sacral vertebrae, and twenty to twenty-two in the tail. In both the dog and the wolf there are thirteen pairs of ribs, nine true and four false. Each has forty-two teeth. They both have five front and four hind toes, while outwardly the common wolf has so much the appearance of a large, bare-boned dog, that a popular description of the one would serve for the other.

Nor are their habits different. The wolf’s natural voice is a loud howl, but when confined with dogs he will learn to bark. Although he is carnivorous, he will also eat vegetables, and when sickly he will nibble grass. In the chase, a pack of wolves will divide into parties, one following the trail of the quarry, the other endeavouring to intercept its retreat, exercising a considerable amount of strategy, a trait which is exhibited by many of our sporting dogs and terriers when hunting in teams.

A further important point of resemblance between the Canis lupus and the Canis familiaris lies in the fact that the period of gestation in both species is sixty-three days. There are from three to nine cubs in a wolf’s litter, and these are blind for twenty-one days. They are suckled for two months, but at the end of that time they are able to eat half-digested flesh disgorged for them by their dam or even their sire.

The native dogs of all regions approximate closely in size, coloration, form, and habit to the native wolf of those regions. Of this most important circumstance there are far too many instances to allow of its being looked upon as a mere coincidence. Sir John Richardson, writing in 1829, observed that « the resemblance between the North American wolves and the domestic dog of the Indians is so great that the size and strength of the wolf seems to be the only difference.

It has been suggested that the one incontrovertible argument against the lupine relationship of the dog is the fact that all domestic dogs bark, while all wild Canidae express their feelings only by howls. But the difficulty here is not so great as it seems, since we know that jackals, wild dogs, and wolf pups reared by bitches readily acquire the habit. On the other hand, domestic dogs allowed to run wild forget how to bark, while there are some which have not yet learned so to express themselves.

The presence or absence of the habit of barking cannot, then, be regarded as an argument in deciding the question concerning the origin of the dog. This stumbling block consequently disappears, leaving us in the position of agreeing with Darwin, whose final hypothesis was that « it is highly probable that the domestic dogs of the world have descended from two good species of wolf (C. lupus and C. latrans), and from two or three other doubtful species of wolves namely, the European, Indian, and North African forms; from at least one or two South American canine species; from several races or species of jackal; and perhaps from one or more extinct species »; and that the blood of these, in some cases mingled together, flows in the veins of our domestic breeds.

Food allergies

Food allergies are something that is difficult to identify unless one is well aware of the baseline information with regard to this type of allergy. The main symptoms of food allergies in dogs include the facial itching, limb chewing, belly itching, recurrent ear infections or skin infections.

Since the dogs consume lot of prepared food materials including various kinds of proteins, fillers, coloring agents and more; in the commercial food materials, the incidences of food allergies are more than one can imagine. Allergic reactions mostly involve the skin or the gastro intestinal tract.

If you come across your dog itching after the provision of specific food materials, then suspect the food allergy in this animal. However, conditions like fungal infections need to be ruled out in general before the conclusion of itching as a sign of food allergy.

There are many recorded incidences of allergies of dogs to corn or to wheat. However, the food allergies vary from dog to dog. Read the labels clearly before feeding your dogs with pet food materials, in such occasions. Too much colored food materials may be avoided since they may cause allergies to your dog.

Food allergies are often linked to the hyper active behavior noticed in the dogs. Added colors, preservatives, and high fat diet might cause such food allergies in the dogs and hence, one has to be careful in providing new kind of diet to their dogs and closely monitor the dog for any signs of allergy.

There are many occasions that food allergies might be diagnosed in the dogs but the dog may have other problems like pancreatitis. To rule out the food allergies, observation your dogs everytime you feed them, look for reasons to link the signs of dog with food given, specific signs encountered, differential diagnosis etc. are the important features to be given emphasis.

Fleas and other parasites

Fleas and other parasites need to be given always a priority by the dog owners. The common incidences of flea bite allergy in case of dogs cause worries among the dog owners. Flea bite induces allergic reactions in the concerned area bitten by the fleas. Hence, the affected area looks like hairless area and the animal starts scratching.

Fleas cause severe dermatitis in dogs with severe flea infestations. Many times, the flea bite causes allergic reactions in the dogs. In many occasions, dogs experience severe discomforts due to these allergic reactions. Medicated collars are available to treat and prevent the infestation with external parasites like ticks or fleas.

Other parasites like ticks, lice in addition to the internal parasites like hook worms, round worms, whip worms etc. cause affections in the health status of the animal. For example, if hookworm affects the animal, most of the times, the dog has anemia. The anemic signs become more prominent depending on the degree of affection by the hookworm.

Hookworm larvae can pass directly through the skin and cause problems in the affected ones. Such dogs may reveal lesions pertaining to the dermatitis in the feet region and in the skin areas. Skin rashes may be seen frequently in such cases and the affected animal passes loose stool, which is of red tinged and mixed with blood material.

If the round worms are seen in more numbers, the affected puppies reveal a potbelly condition, which is easily recognized by the dog owners themselves. Piperazine salts are given by oral route for the treatment of this problem. However, broad-spectrum anthelmintics like pyrantel pamoate, fenbendazole etc. are given to treat these conditions.

Many drugs have come in market to treat the fleas and other parasites. Nowadays, the medical agent called as ivermectin is highly preferred by many dog owners to treat the fleas and other parasites in dogs. This drug is available in injection form and oral form. Even the drug is available for the external application also.

First steps in grooming

Grooming is one of the important activities to be known well by the dog owner. If the dog owner is not aware of the grooming, then the dog may encounter many types of diseases. First steps of grooming consists of activities like maintenance of coat, nails and ears. The maintenance of the coat mainly consists of enrichment measures like proper bathing, combing, drying of skin by dryers, and more. The animal need not be bathed daily and this helps to protect the skin’s characteristics like insulation feature.

Use conditioners and shampoos that are meant for dogs. Combing needs to be carried out with a soft brush meant for use in case of dogs. There are varieties of brushes available and depending on the type of breeds, one can use the concerned brush. This grooming of the coat by a comb needs to be carried out daily and the fallen hair if any needs to be placed in dust bin always.

Otherwise, when the dog owners switch on the fan, the hair will fly and may enter the nostrils of persons. Always don’t clip too much because this may lead to injuries of nail always. Similarly, you need to carry all the materials required for the clipping with you before the start of the procedure.

Use a sharp clipper designed for use in case of dogs. It is better to have the dog on the raised place and hence, the control of the animal is easier. Ear canals are to be checked up frequently and sterile cotton may be used for cleaning purposes. Grooming associated guidelines need to be followed strictly by the dog owners.

Nail-maintenance is one of the first steps of grooming activities. Live nail areas can be easily clipped away and are always light colored than the reddish area of the nail in the higher position. During the holding of your dog’s feet by you, always have a firm grip. If not, the dog will take an upper hand during the clipping and some injury may occur.

Finding The Right Animal Trainer Or Dog Obedience School Made Easy

Fact: Dog is man’s best friend. But, will you still consider your dog your best friend if it keeps on peeing everywhere, chewing on every furniture you have, eating more dog foods than the usual, and making a complete mess out of your room, garden, and home in general? It’s fun to have a dog to walk around, there’s no doubt about that.

But if your dog is not a well-trained one, chances are you’ll end up getting a new and friendlier pet. So, prior to getting a pet dog, be sure that you have idea about animal trainer and dog obedience school. And to make the task of finding the right animal trainer or dog training school for your pet, here are some tips to guide you.

First, you have to be keen when choosing a dog trainer or dog obedience school. With so many people promoting themselves as experts in the area of animal training nowadays, you could be easily deceived by one who claims to be the most reliable in this field. That is why, before you take on an animal trainer or dog school to help you turn your pet from naughty to well-trained, here are some factors that you should look out for:

1. The person or school’s reputation. To know this, you can ask around your neighbors or from your friends and colleagues who have already tried this kind of training for their pets. Or better yet, get recommendations from your veterinarian or from your local pet store because they know very well whom you can turn to when it comes to dog training.

2. Years of service/experience. Choosing between a new trainer or school and an experienced one, of course, any dog owner will always go for the latter. Why? Because longer years of service and experience mean that more people are satisfied with how they train dogs, thus they are there to stay. So before you hire a trainer or enroll in a school, make sure that you know how long the trainer or the school has been doing dog training.

3. Sincere love and attachment to dogs. Of course, you want your pet to be handled by someone who is not only into training dogs but also shows compassion to these animals, right? That’s why, be sure to look out for this quality when looking for the right dog trainer.

4. Training tactics and handling skills. Many people can easily claim that they love dogs and that they know how to train them. But do they really know the tactics and have the skills to really train one? So, when hiring a dog trainer, make sure that he really has the skills in the area of dog training. Ask if he keeps himself up to date by attending dog training seminars, workshops, and classes.

If you find a dog trainer or a dog obedience school that satisfies the four things mentioned above, then you are on the right track of having a well-trained dog. See, finding the right one does not have to be that mind-boggling, right?

Dry Vs. Canned food

These types of food materials are different with different grades of liking by the dogs. Dogs like dry foods only if they are tasty only and however, on comparison, the dogs prefer only the canned food items. Reason for such preference by the dogs is that in case of canned food items, the moisture is about seventy to eighty per cent but in case of dry food, it is only about ten per cent.

However, if you view it in terms of nutrients, often the dry food contains nearly ninety per cent nutrients whereas the canned food items contain only less per cent of nutrients and most of the times. It is only soy products that are structured so well to look like meat pieces.

Hence, to make up the nutritional balance in the body systems, the dog has to eat more amounts of canned food materials than the dry food materials. Hence, just compare the cost factor related to this feature by you. Many dry food items are soybean and rice based.

Now some dry food items are based on corn. Sometimes, beef based or chicken based food items come in the cans along with mineral and vitamin supplements suited for the upkeep of the dog’s health status. Larger dogs that weigh more than thirty pounds need to be fed with semi moist food items or dry food items in most of the occasions.

This is to satisfy the food receptors in the stomach. This is due to the fact that the larger dogs need to eat plenty of moist food or the canned food items to satisfy these criteria. But it may not be practically possible in these larger dogs. The small sized dogs may have a satisfactory level of nutrients if fed even the moist food items.
However, the caloric density of the dry food should not be forgotten. Enriched dry food items are highly welcome ones than the non -enriched food items.

Dogs need different diets at different ages

Dogs need different diets at different ages. Yes. This is true. For example, the puppy needs milk as the major food item while an adult dog may need beef or chicken in addition to the boiled egg and milk. So depending on the age factor, the diet schedule varies in reality for the dogs like any other species.

Puppies need greater amounts of protein, fat and carbohydrates than an adult dogs. Furthermore, puppies need more frequent feeding schedules in a day, unlike an adult dog. The movement based requirements of diet are more in the case of puppies, since they are often more active than the adult dogs.

Elder dogs need restricted protein but the protein needs to be easily digestible and easily assimilated in the body. The diet schedule should have ample supply of water for them. Feeding aged dogs too much protein may finally lead to over burden to the renal structures and ultimately, the dog may end up damaging filters in the kidney.

This is true especially when the immune system of these dogs is compromised due to many factors. Similarly, the elderly dogs need less food only because the movements of the adult dogs are highly restricted and hence, they have to spend a limited of energy.

Female dogs in the pregnancy stage need not be fed a full stomach since it may cause some discomforts to the animal. However, the pregnant animal and the nursing animal need special type of food items that deliver a balanced type of nutrition with proper supplementation of vitamins and minerals.

The nursing animal with puppies need to be fed with enough amounts of calcium and hence, there will not be any calcium based deficiency and the bones of the puppies will be strong without any curving.

Dog Obedience Training Exercises: Developing A Well-Trained Dog

Have you seen the movie « Marley and Me »? If you have, then you’ve seen how annoying Marley can be. He’s the type of dog that any dog trainer will not be too happy to meet. He pees everywhere, chews on the living room set, and jumps on people. Actually, his owner, portrayed by Owen Wilson, even brought him to a dog training class to turn him into a well-trained dog. Unfortunately, the dog trainer easily gave up on him because he was the worst dog she had ever seen. He made a total chaos in the class, so he was not allowed to finish the course. That was kind of frustrating on the part of his owners. Now, if you have a dog like Marley, what will you do? Why not try these dog obedience training exercises to develop a well-trained dog?

Sit

You have to note that your dog must always sit at your left side with his shoulder at your left knee. To make him obey the sit command, you have to first fold the leash in your right hand. Then, call your dog’s name and command sit. Push down on his hindquarters using your left hand and jerk up on the leash with your hand. When he does the sitting position right, praise him and give him a treat.

Heeling on Leash

When walking your dog, his right shoulder should be about even with your left knee. Once the leash turns loose, simply call out your dog’s name and give the heel command. Walk forward as soon as you can and then give a hard jerk on the leash. Do not drag your dog when you do this. Once you jerked him into position, praise him with words like « Good boy! »

About Turn

When you turn away from your dog, do it to your right to reverse your direction. And as you do it, make sure that you keep your eyes on your dog and then give several short and quick jerks.

Stay

To make your dog stay where he is, command him to be in a sitting position. Afterwards, hold up your hand with the flat of your palm facing him, then tell him to stay. If he does, again give him praise but if not, put him back in position and start again.

Down

Just like in the stay command, you can make your dog obey the down command by putting him in a sitting position first. With him sitting, give the down command, then slowly push on his shoulders and wobble him off balance at the same time. But there’s another way to do this. You can also place the leash between your sole and shoe heel. Then, give the down command and pull up on the leash.

So these are just some of the dog obedience training exercises that you can do to develop a well-trained dog. At first, they may seem difficult. But once you tried them and see effective results, you will realize how rewarding these dog obedience exercises could be not only for your dog but also for you.

Dog Obedience Training: Being the Boss

Dogs are naturally pack animals. This means they need an alpha to lead them in their everyday lives, and this also means the owner must act alpha; that the dog should consider you as the boss for the obedience training to proceed smoothly. Individual dogs vary in submissiveness, and to establish and maintain dominance over your dog, there are a number of exercises you can establish. Do not worry; most dogs are happy to be submissive. Just be sure to show approval at the occasional signs of submission, and assert dominance if it tries to test you.

There are two components of training, one that solves behavioral problems, and there is that one that creates a command-response pattern. The latter type is called « Obedience Training ». However, both need one factor: A good Alpha.

In most cases, people misinterpret adolescent behavior as « dominance » when they are not. Comparing it to a human child testing her parents; she is trying to find out what the limits are rather than actually putting her parents in the little game called « Challenge Me » for leadership, a playful act. Young dogs and puppies do exactly the same. Which is, the trainer must correct them firmly, however don’t go into an all out dominating battle.

It would be very inappropriate for the dog to distrust you, which, in this case can result some sort of « rebellion ». For the toddler analogy, the most one can do is a sharp word, or a small spank on the rear end. You would not pick the child up, and hold her against the wall, then scream at her for the misdeed. Most dogs are still young until they are 2 or 3 years old (in human terms, they are still in the angst, teenage years). In Layman’s terms, do not confuse physical maturity with mental maturity.

As for punishments are concerned, never mistake it with being alpha. An alpha is fair, according to Cindy Moore, author of Behavior: Modifying and Understanding. An alpha leader is fair, and deserves its position. He/She does not use fear, punishment or brute force to achieve, and maintain its position. Instead, it makes it clear what behavior approves of and which it does not. An alpha leader expects its subordinates to follow its lead; it does not force them to do whatever it is. Meaning, the owner or trainer, in order for it to be a good leader, should be calm, focused, and rational.

Just like any other training, praising your pet boosts a lot of good egos. Always show approval at signs of submission. This helps strengthen your place as the ultimate alpha. Praise your dog when it drops its eyes first. Praise it when he licks your chin. Give it an enthusiastic tummy rub, when it rolls over in its back –as how Cindy placed it. It might sound corny, but it is corny because it works. Life is simple; you just need a bit of loving.

But to be an alpha at your best is to be consistent, and fair in your corrections. One must demonstrate to your pet that it can trust your orders. Do not correct your dog after the fact; such corrections to be arbitrary and unfair to the dog, since it has no associative memory the way people do.

Socializing with your puppy is a good way to gain its trust.