Hey Poochy!

Helpful tips for happy paws.

The Art of Playing — September 21, 2017

The Art of Playing

Tennis balls aren’t the best play toy. It might be a cheaper solution, but also may cause issues for 2 reasons:

  • Pieces of the ball can get bitten off and swallowed. This may cause an intestinal blockage.
  • The outer layer of felt can easily get stuck in dog’s teeth.

Either one of the cases will cause large vet bills. Instead of putting yourself and your dog, through this hassle, simply invest in a few chew toys at pet store. This will save you on vet bills and pose no threat to your dog, plus it will also last longer than any tennis ball.

Best place(s) for bed — September 20, 2017

Best place(s) for bed

I am on one of those owners who spoil my dogs. They have more sweaters and tees than I do, and homemade treats galore. Same goes for their beds. Each room of the house has a doggy bed.

I allow my dogs to choose their “sleeping zone”. For example: My alpha male, Dido, loves to sleep under my bed. After he has chosen this spot, I simply put his bed there – this will be not only his quiet sleeping place, but also his safe zone. And by safe zone, I mean a place that belongs to the dog alone. A place where it won’t be disturbed.

 Clink on this link to see different beds from PetSmart for you furbaby.

 

Tips for Leashes — September 15, 2017

Tips for Leashes

Since I live in the city, leash is a necessity. And with huge selection from the stores, how do you know which leash to get? It all comes down to preference.

I prefer nylon leashes. They are durable, don’t easily stretch and are easy to clean. When choosing the right leash, consider the following:

  • Does it feel comfortable in your hand?
  • Does it slip out of your hard easily? If yes, than this is not your leash.
  • If the dog were to suddenly pull, would the leash cut into your hand?
  • Are the clips durable and easy to open/close?

For city dwellers, the leash shouldn’t be more than 4-feet long. It should be long enough to keep your dog close to you and out of danger, yet let it feel unrestricted. If you live in a more remote location, than you can give your dog a little more wiggle room, as you aren’t limited by space

Fool Proof, Beginner Dogs — September 13, 2017

Fool Proof, Beginner Dogs

Look at every dog as an individual – with its own personality and preferences. Therefore before getting a pooch, consider your living arrangements and the right dog for you. Some dogs need a yard to exercise and it would simply be cruel to restrict them from this basic pleasure. Some dogs have bad separations anxiety and don’t like being home along for extended periods of time. And some are simply afraid of everything and prefer to hide in your lap all day.

So how do you go about finding the right fit for you?

Looks like you are in luck! I found the best quiz, just for you– it will help you with determining the most suitable dog for your current lifestyle. So what are you waiting for? Click here to get started and find the right puppy!

 

How to create the perfect harmony — September 11, 2017

How to create the perfect harmony

If you are like me, than one dog is never enough. So I’ve made it as a rule, to allow the first dog to choose their mate. This does take some to find the right dog, but once it chooses its friend, there will be harmony.

Imagine for a moment, your parent bring home a complete stranger, off the street, and tell you, that this is your new sibling and you must love it like your own. Would you?

That’s how dogs feel about any other dogs that you bring home. So just to skip, all of the unnecessary hassle, I allow my pooch to choose their sibling/mate.

The main thing is to allow your dogs to establish their own hierarchy, in which the pack order is clear. This will ensure that conflicts will be rare.

Difference between Collar vs. Chest Harness — September 10, 2017

Difference between Collar vs. Chest Harness

Collars vs. Chest Harness                                   

I’m not a big fan of collars. I feel as if I am dragging my dog around by its neck, rather than allowing it to comfortable walk. Don’t get me wrong, there are pros and cons to both. However, as a personal preference, I love chest harness. I know that no matter how much the doggy pulls the leash, chest harness will never “choke” the dog. After all, when I go for walks with my pooches, I let them control where they want to go. If I see an obstacle, I can always redirect them, knowing full well, that they will change direction with a gentle tug of a leash.


*** Do not leave harness on your dog for more than 2 days. It might cause shaving and loss of hair. ***


So what’s the difference between collar and chest harness?  If your dog walks in zigzags, constantly tangling you in their leash, or squirm around a lot, than you can better control it with a collar, simply because they cannot twist around to all sides. However, as the collar sits on their neck, be sure that your dog doesn’t have an injury in the vicinity of a collar or trachea.

Chest Harness on the other hand, is more for dogs, who have mastered basic obedience skills. The harness should be well padded and fit the dog accurately, to avoid being too loose and to avoid chafes.

Click here for a helpful diagram about different chest harnesses, by Planned Urban Life.

The 9 Signs of a Healthy Puppy — September 9, 2017

The 9 Signs of a Healthy Puppy

The general rule is getting a puppy at 8 weeks old or later. It is essential for puppies to spend its first 8 weeks with its mother and siblings. In this short time frame, the puppy learns basic social behavior from its mother.  It develops its personality and learns how to get along with other dogs. If a puppy, is taken too early away from its mother, than it might miss out on learning basic social behavior. We all want our puppy to be happy and social.

Signs of a Healthy Puppy

  • Clear eyes and an alert gaze
  • The fur should be shiny, healthy and well kept
  • No discharge from eyes or nose
  • Has a nice “puppy tummy” and is well nourished
  • The anal region is clean
  • Puppy is curious and full of life, no trouble of running around, jumping and exploring everything around it
  • Expect dog’s droppings. There must not be white “rice” marks (tapeworm segments) nor  diarrhea
  • Check fur for fleas, by running your fingers against the lay of the hair
  • Check for blindness by moving an interesting object in front of them and check their reaction time
How to make your new dog feel welcomed —

How to make your new dog feel welcomed

My fur-family is about to get bigger. I can’t wait to welcome another pooch into my circle.  And while we are on a topic of a new poochy; here is the list of basic things to get, so your pooch feels extra special.

  • Water dish
  • Food bowl
  • Dog food/treats
  • Food mat (think of this as a bib for your floor. Puppies can be messy eaters)
  • Sleeping bed (I have one in each room of the house)
  • Collar with dogs name and your phone number
  • Leash
  • Brush/comb
  • Toys, toys, and more toys (better it chews on a rubber toy, than your shoes and cables)
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste – I’m not kidding
  • Tick Tweezers
  • Old towels
Dehydration and Heat Stroke — August 18, 2017

Dehydration and Heat Stroke

Summer Heat

Imagine going outside in the summer, doing errands in hot, scorching sun, without any shade and water. Now imagine the same scenario, only this time, you are wearing a fur coat. That’s exactly how dogs feel in the summer time. They do not emit heat through their skin like we do. Therefore dehydration can take only minutes.

They sweat through:

  • Bottom of paw pads
  • By panting
  • And through their nose (cold nose, is a happy nose)

 

.:. Hint .:. – Dogs nose is always a good indicator on how they are feeling. Cold nose is a happy nose!

 

It doesn’t take much for them to overheat – it can take minutes. By the time you notice signs of heat stroke, the damage is done. So how do you protect you pooch? Follow these steps for a happy and hydrated, summer walk.

 

.:. Hint .:. – Every summer, do not forget to groom your dog. Otherwise they are walking with fur coats on, all summer long.


Signs of Dehydration

  • Heavy panting
  • Sunken eyes
  • Dry nose or mouth
  • Weakness
  • Loose skin
  • Excessive drooling/salivation

VS.

Signs of Heat Stroke

  • Excessive panting
  • Loss of energy
  • Collapse or weakness
  • Tongue color is dark red, almost purple
  • Hyper salivation
  • Vomiting

*(!)* What To Do *(!)*

  • Bring dog indoor, into a cool shaded area
  • Use cool water, not ice water or cold water, to spray bottom of the dogs stomach and bottom of the paws
  • Place a bowl of cool water in front of your dog
  • Use a fan on medium, to create a draft. Do not blow the fan directly at the dog.
  • Offer a cold treat, recipes can be found here.

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.:. Hint .:. DO NOT submerge your dog in cold water, nor pour ice water over it. This will not help, but will cause a shock to its body.

Hot Summer Days and Your Poochy — August 15, 2017

Hot Summer Days and Your Poochy

It’s another scorching, summer day. Another heat wave in Canada. I went to a park with my Poochy. I always remember 2 main items to take with me.

  • Booties: Dogs can’t sweat through their skin, like we do – they sweat through the bottom of their paws, and by panting. So I always remember to put rubber booties on them. You can get these booties at any pet store. These booties protect doggy paws from hot pavement, mud and rain. Love them!
  • Water: I always bring a bottle of water and a portable cup. I make it a rule to offer water to Poochy, every 15 minutes, or even sooner if I see signs of dehydration.

*** Good To Know ***

Dogs can’t sweat through their skin. They sweat though the bottom of their paws. So always remember about booties, booties and booties.

They also sweat by panting, so always bring water, water and water. Dogs that are overheating will start excessively drooling. Look out for signs of dehydration.

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Now keep in mind that we went for a quick 10 minute walk. Usually, if I know it’s going to be a hot and humid day, I like to take Poochy for walks early in the morning and late in the evening. If the pavement is too hot for you, than it’s too hot for them. A quick way to check if the pavement, is to do a palm heat test:

  1. Put your hand on pavement that you are planning to walk on with your pooch.
  2. If you can’t hold your hand still for 3 seconds, then it’s too hot.
  3. If it’s too hot for your hand, it is too hot for your pooch’s paw.

*** Good To Know ***

– darker coats absorb more heat, than lighter coats

– overweight dogs are at a higher risk for dehydration

– different breeds deal with heat differently

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