Dogs are Friends's Blog


Is your dog overweight
July 21, 2009, 6:12 pm
Filed under: Pets | Tags: , ,

Inactivity in dogs can certainly have the potential to lead your dog into becoming overweight or even obese. When dogs weigh more than their target weight, it can have adverse effects on their heart, lungs, joints and other vital organs. If you suspect your pup is getting a little too pudgy, go ahead and take some steps to improve your pet’s weight and overall health.
Obesity is a growing issue today and it has even spread to our pets. If you suspect your dog is over weight, first and fore most talk to your vet. After you have done that consider these few things:

First, feed your dog less food. Decreasing the size of their dinner portions will give them less caloric intake. If you choose to give your dog a new brand or type of dog food, it is always best to do so in gradual steps. Sometimes immediately switching to a new dog food can upset your pup’s stomach. Mix in a third of the new food with two thirds of the regular food the first day. Then on the second day, switch to a two third portion of the new food, and one third of the old brand. And then on the third day, go ahead and simply feed your pup their new food in the designated portions.

Oftentimes, canine obesity can be attributed to being fed scraps from the family dinner table. Let the people food be saved for the people. If human food were good for dogs, then there would be no need for food specially designed for dogs. If you feed your pup from the dinner table, stop. You may need to put your doggie in the other room or outside in the backyard to resist those big brown begging eyes…that’s fine. If you stop feeding your dog people food, depending on how often you feed them, you may see a dramatic decrease in their pudginess.

Finally, exercise benefits everyone, even pets. Talk to your vet before you begin an exercise plan for your dog, so you can make sure he or she is healthy enough to begin exercising regularly. You will want to start taking your dog on short walks twice a day. Gradually increase the length and distance each week. Once you feel your dog is ready to step it up, increase the pace as well. This will help shed their extra pounds, as well as simply improving their general health.

Remember, before establishing a serious weight loss plan for your pet, talk to your vet. They will help you determine the best way for your doggie to lose their excess weight. Don’t forget, by helping your pet lose their extra pounds, you are most likely increasing their life and happiness!

Also reward all their weightloss efforts with dog beds, dog crates, and dog doors.



Best Dog Grooming Tips
July 16, 2009, 2:10 pm
Filed under: Pets | Tags: , , , ,

Grooming is something that is part of being a responsible dog owner. Some dogs love it, where as some act like it is worst thing on earth. I have put together a list of some grooming tips I have picked up over the years. Enjoy!

dog-bath
Grooming is necessary if you want your dog to remain healthy and happy. As you groom your dog, be sure to pay close attention to their body. Check for fleas and ticks as you brush and comb their coat or as you give them their bath. Also look for any abnormal lumps or bumps, discoloration of the skin, unusual bruises, scratches or breaks in the skin. If you notice your pet experiencing unusual tenderness or sensitivity in a particular area that is uncommon, take your pup to the vet as soon as possible.

The breed of your dog determines the grooming procedures you will need to practice regularly. For example, a dog with a short and stiff coat will not need to be brushed or combed nearly as much as a dog with a long and luxuriant coat. However, dogs with short hair often enjoy being brushed, and it also stimulates their skin and circulation, as well as evenly distributes their skin’s natural oils throughout the coat.

If your dog has a long or particularly thick coat, combing and brushing can be a little bit more complex. First, begin by gently running through your pup’s coat with a wide-toothed comb. If their coat is heavily matted, use a dematting comb. If you are unable to untangle a small section of their hair, sometimes it is best to simply the coat right beneath the tangle.

Next, follow the thorough combing with a brush. This will increase the shine and luster of your pup’s coat, and most pets really enjoy being brushed. Be sure to brush and comb in the direction of their hair growth; brushing in the opposite direction will only cause severe tangles, thus defeating the whole purpose of grooming.

Dental health is an important part in keeping your dog healthy and clean. Doggie toothbrushes and toothpaste can easily be purchased at nearly any pet supply company. Simply put the toothpaste on the toothbrush, gently pry open your dog’s mouth with your thumb and forefinger, and brush! If your dog does not take well to teeth brushing, consider getting your dog special chew toys and chew bites that aid in the removal of tartar and plaque from your pup’s teeth.

Keeping your pet healthy and well groomed should always be a priority for any pet owner. The frequency of grooming your dog is dependent on them…some dogs require grooming more often than others. Once you begin to practice grooming your dog, you will get a feel of when Spot needs to be bathed, brushed, combed and trimmed again. By keeping your dog healthy, you are keeping them happy!

Once they are clean, reward them with dog beds, dog doors, or dog steps.



One More Reason to Get Your Pup Vaccinated
July 13, 2009, 12:29 pm
Filed under: Pets | Tags: , , ,

We all know how during the first few months of owning a new puppy it seems like you are at the vet all the time. Get this shot then come back for a checkup. It may seem annoying but it is so very important to your pups health that you stick it out and go to all the check ups and scheduled vet visits.

In May of this year, two animal shelters in West Georgia were closed because of an outbreak of canine distemper virus. Even more disappointing than the closing of the shelters is that fact that many puppies and dogs (with weakened immune systems) had to be euthanized. The other animals are being kept elsewhere, while the shelters undergo a thorough cleaning. Canine distemper is deadly and spreads quickly, but the outbreak in West Georgia was not caused by conditions at the shelters. So, how does the disease spread, what symptoms are present, and how can you treat and prevent infection?

The canine distemper virus (CDV) was once a widespread and commonly found disease in dogs. Vaccination efforts significantly reduced the outbreaks of the disease; although it can still occur. The outbreak in West Georgia was the first in 18 years. CDV is transmitted by animals, such as raccoons, foxes, and weasels. Cats are not known to be susceptible to the virus. It spreads quickly and can live in an area a month after the carrier is gone. It can be spread through the air, feces, saliva, urine, and other body secretions. An unvaccinated dog merely chasing an infected animal can contract the disease. This is what officials think may have caused the outbreak in West Georgia. Once the infected dog entered the kennel, the disease spread to the unvaccinated animals.

Once CDV enters the body, it spreads quickly. Often, the symptoms depend on the infection site but spread to infect the entire body. If the virus enters into the respiratory system, the symptoms are similar to kennel cough and include coughing, discharge from the eyes and a runny nose. When the digestive tract is infected by the virus, vomiting and diarrhea most often occur. If the virus infects the brain and the nervous system (the untreated virus almost always spreads here), then seizures may occur. Fever is almost always present with the infection.

Not all dogs that contract the disease die from it. However, fatalities often occur in young puppies and dogs with weakened immune systems. There is no cure for the disease; although, fluids can be given to prevent dehydration and antibiotics can be prescribed to fight off secondary infections. Animals that survive the disease frequently suffer from nervous system disorders later in life.

The best thing you can do for your pet is get him vaccinated. Between vaccinations, keep your pooch away from pets outside your home. Wait until the vaccinations are in full effect before you take him on a play date or to a dog park. If you suspect that a dog in your home has the virus, then isolate him and immediately contact your veterinarian. Humans have not been known to contract the virus, but it will spread to other dogs in your home. If you have had a pet suffer from CDV, do not bring a new pet into your home for at least one month. Everything in your home should be disinfected with water and bleach or acceptable disinfectants. The shelters in West Georgia are in the process of cleaning and replacing ceiling tiles and ductwork because of the airborne nature of the disease.

Canine distemper virus is a deadly disease. Once contracted, the virus is easily spread to other animals. Two shelters in West Georgia are undergoing decontamination because of outbreaks of CDV. Having your puppy vaccinated is the best thing you can do to prevent contraction of the virus. During the vaccination process, do not allow you pup outside the home or around other animals, you can contain them with a dog crate or a pet gate. If you are bringing a new pet into a home where the CDV was once present, be sure you thoroughly clean your entire home and wait at least one month before the introduction.



Just for Starters
July 6, 2009, 1:21 pm
Filed under: Pets

Dear Pet lovers,

No worries I have finally arrived to wordpress to share my pet care knowledge with you all. Just as a starter I will leave you with these links to check out.

http://www.spayusa.org/ or Keep your 4 legged friend healthy

Stay posted, more to come soon




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