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Why Do Dogs Lick Around Their Tails?

If you are a dog owner, you may have seen your dog chase his tail. Sometimes it can be just a normal act and will finish quickly, it is harmless behavior. However, if the action repeats frequently and even is harmful to your dog, there could be an underlying health or behavior problem.

There are many reasons why your dog might chase their tail, from mischief, boredom or something more serious like trauma. In this post, we will list six most common reasons they exhibit this behavior:

1. Bored

Sometimes dogs chase the tail because of boredom. This may be that they are left alone for most of the day or not getting enough mental or physical stimulation. Chasing tails provide a way to entertain – at least for a short while – and also allow them to release some of that accumulated energy.

2. Medical conditions

If your dog appears to be obsessive chasing its tail, it could be due to an underlying health condition, such as a neurological condition that leads to some kind of epilepsy. It can also be a sign of orthopedic disorder or muscle pain.

3. Fleas

Another possible reason behind why dogs chase their tails could be due to a flea. Sometimes, their tails can become really itchy due to an infection or an allergy to flea bites, and they may chase their tails trying to bite and bite to alleviate the condition. If you think the behavior may be caused by a flea, examine their skin for evidence – you may notice small, dark brown to black spots on their coat (flea droppings). In some cases, bald patches may be present from excessive licking or scratching.

4. Your puppy’s playfulness

Just like with human children, puppies love to discover more about their world with their mouths. So the viable answer to why a dog is chasing a tail could be simply because they’re a puppy!

As they grow up, they learn new things about themselves. Also, puppies are extremely mischievous, so they may just see their tail as a fun toy to chase and potentially grow from this behavior.

5. Seek attention

Your dog also can use his tail to attract attention. If they feel ignored, your dog may have figured out what behavior will get a response from you. Dogs often like owners taking care of them and spending time with them. Therefore when it has been a long time you didn’t notice them, they can continue this behavior. Our four-legged friends are sociable creatures and love to play and interact!

6. Anxiety

Tail chasing can be a symptom of anxiety. And licking tail around will bring comfort for them, specially, when it’s taken as a one-time stress reliever, they can start doing it whenever they feel anxious.

Some typical causes of anxiety in dogs can include:

Worry

Fear of loud noises like fireworks

Be afraid of new experiences, including new walks or meeting strangers

Small living areas (such as cribs or crates)

Complex social interactions with another pet

Lack of opportunities to communicate

Scary experiences before

Age-related anxiety caused by disorientation

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Take Care of Puppy’s Teeth

One of the most important problems when owning a puppy is their teeth and teething. Teething process is not an easy time for puppies and it will affect their health after that. To keep your puppy’s teeth clean and healthy, you should notice some issues and take care of them well. And here’s some things you can read to know how to take care of puppy’s teeth.

About teeth and teething

When puppies are born, they haven’t had teeth yet. Normally, they will have milk teeth (baby teeth) when they are 2-4 weeks old. From 4 months old, puppy’s baby teeth will disappear and 42 adult teeth will replace these rooms. This process is called teething and it is quite uncomfortable when this time comes. Because the gums in this time will be painful and itchy, and your dogs will chew and bite anything they see to relieve this feeling. Even, some puppies are not taken care of well in this time and their teeth can grow normally, leave some diseases, make puppy stress and lose weight.

Some puppy’s teeth diseases

Puppy’s teeth still face many diseases like humans. There are some common dental issues we can mention: toothache, caries, crumbling teeth….Puppies with this problem often show few signs and maybe the owner doesn’t know. Therefore, keeping puppy’s teeth healthy from the beginning is the best solution. Moreover, checking teeth of puppies regularly can help us to detect the problems of them sooner.

To protect good teeth for your puppies, there are some tips for you:

Brush teeth

Helping puppies to get acquainted with brushing teeth habits from an early age will be easier than when they are older. You can ask your little dog to open wide and say “ah”. The next step is using a toothbrush to clean its teeth or gums. You can do it at least once a day after it’s meals at the end of day. You should use a very soft-bristled brush and special dog toothpaste for your puppy. If you use a hard-bristled brush and human’s toothpastes containing fluoride and xylitol, they will be harmful for the little dog.

Puppy chewing

Chewing is the normal habit of puppies and especially when they are in teething time. As we mention above, chewing helps them relieve the pain and uncomfortable feeling when teeth grow. But the dark side is that this habit will damage milk teeth or the new adult teeth of them. Because dog will be easier to chew everything he can get his teeth on, sharp and solid objects may be dangerous for dog to chew. This is the reason why we should provide him with toys that are safe for his chompers. There are many soft teething toys and toys that are firm but also have some flexibility on the market you can buy for your puppy. Appropriate chew toys also help to boost puppy teething and the ability of puppy using their teeth.

Puppy Bitting

Beside chewing objects, puppies also like bitting, grasping and carrying everything. And many dangerous things in home and outside space can hurt little dog too. When a puppy bites something you don’t want, you can yield to warn him that it is not allowed. After that, call him and give him another thing to bite or chew, like his food or toys.

Healthy Food for Teeth

What food puppy eats also affects their teeth. The best choice for a little dog is dry food and mineral water. But they are still young and you can consider mixing dry food with soft food to get him acquainted with first. It will limit the leftover in their teeth and stuck food on puppy’s gum. It also help the brush process after that becomes easier.

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Appropriate Clothes For Dogs In The Winter

A normal dog can live well in the winter even when they don’t wear clothes. But in fact it still affects so much on a dog’s health if they get wet or live too long in the low temperature. Specially, for the olds or newborn dogs, it is really necessary to provide winter clothing for them to withstand the chilling cold.

They come in a variety of styles, materials and kinds including velcro dog sweater, dog winter coats, and even dog snowsuits with covered legs for you to buy. So to choose the right clothes, you must consider a variety of factors. Read the article below to get more information.

1. Size


As humans, when you choose clothes for pets, the most things you should notice is the size of your dog. Different dogs will require different sizes for clothes they wear. Clothes which are a little bit larger than the size of dogs will make them suitable and cozy.

If you buy clothes that are not the appropriate size for your own dog, your dog will feel uncomfortable and will not want to wear them at all. It is also wasted when leaving clothes.

2. Material


The material of clothes for dogs decides how warm and comfortable your dog will feel in the chilly seasons. The materials will also affect the ability to keep your dog healthy during the winter. Normally, clothes made of wool like sweaters and jackets are chosen by many pet’s owners. Because they look quite good style and they are suitable for dogs. For dogs that are quite chubby, a sweater is enough for the cold weather. If your dog does not have a lot of body fat, it is important to choose dog clothes that are made of warm, insulating material.

If you live in a place having harsh winter, to add extra heat, you can also purchase a barrier-insulated jacket to protect your pet against the more extreme cold. Padded jackets and knitted coats are also common examples of materials that will keep your furry little friend warm and warm.

3. Waterproof or not

If your dog likes to get out and run around, you must buy them waterproof winter clothes. This is because if your dog runs around and plays in the snow, his clothes will surely get wet. Waterproof winter clothes will help to keep your dog dry for not being cold and get sick. Also, winter clothes will get dirty in the snow. Waterproof clothing will not be affected by dirty water or snow. Your dog will feel cozy and free to play on the ground in wet snow for as long as they want.

4. Easy to Wear

Usually, dogs or cats or pets in general don’t enjoy wearing clothes. So this is the reason why we should find clothes that are easy to put on and just as easy to remove. Otherwise, you might end up with a real struggle.

Also, think about how they will affect your dog’s collar or harness. Does it make it difficult for the dog to walk or go to the toilet?

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Take Care Of A Pug: Hygiene

The pug (also known as a bulldog) is a very friendly, affectionate, and they love being cared for, just as many people love their pleated face. However, this breed needs special care in order to be healthy and happy. This may take a little extra work, but you can fulfill all the special needs of a pug with a little attention. This article will show you some things to take care of a pug.

1. Clean all creases on the dog’s face weekly.

The pug’s face can become dirty with food, saliva, dirt, and other dirty grit that stinks and causes irritation for them. You will need to use a cotton swab soaked in warm water to clean their face. You should wipe along the folds around the dog’s nose and eyes, and must be careful not to let the cotton swab stick on the dog’s eyes, nostrils, or mouth. You also need to dry the water stain after wiping their face with a damp cloth. It is better to do it once a week at least, you also can clean their face everytime you think your dog is dirty or smells bad.

2. Comb your dog’s hair every 1-2 weeks.

The Pug dog sheds heavily and around year. There is no way to avoid this. You can keep them healthy and remove sheds by comb once or twice a week with a dog comb or a dog comb for shedding. Regular combing the pug will also help keep furniture in your home from getting dirty.

3.Clean your dog’s ears with a special dog ear cleaner once a week.

The pug’s small, pretty ears have a shape that easily accumulates dust. So, you need to clean their ears with a liquid, specifically designed for cleaning dog ears. Put the solution in the dog’s ear, and then wipe the inside with a cotton ball.

4.Bathe the pug once a month.

Regardless of whether your dog is dirty or has a bad smell, it is still recommended to bathe the pug once a month. Make sure the bath water level is not too deep for the dog to stand up. Use dog bath soap, available at most pet stores. Be sure to rinse your dog clearly after soaping your dog. Soap can form in the folds, so check carefully to make sure the dog is completely out of soap. Be sure to cover the pug’s sensitive eyes when draining the water.

5.Trim your dog’s nails if needed.

Pug dogs do not sharpen their nails naturally like other kinds of dog, so it is important to have them trimmed periodically. If you want to trim your dog’s nails at home, use a dog-specific nail clipper to avoid cracking. Always cut below the soft center of the nail, called the nail marrow.

There are some ways to keep your pug healthy and clean!

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Training Your Puppy 5 Basic Behaviors

It’s not easy learning how to train a puppy, but crate training is an excellent way to help them settle into your home and get them on a schedule. It wastes so much time on raising your puppy good behaviors, but your efforts will pay off. Once your puppy adjusts to its new schedule he will learn to anticipate bathroom breaks and bedtime, making your life a lot easier. If a puppy is well-trained, he will be a great dog, in contrast, he’ll cause problems. Here are 5 basic habits you can get started your puppy training:

 

Train your puppy: Bathroom rules

Toilet training is the first important thing when raising a pet to keep your house clean and to form a good habit for your dog. You should take your puppy to the same spot to let him know this is the right place to poop. When you take the puppy to this position, give the command to “go to the toilet” and wait for it to do so. Getting your puppy to a stationary position helps them associate the smell of waste with the act of defecating. The characteristic odor may encourage the puppy to defecate in this place. Stay with your puppy while he poops so you can praise him for the right time when he is pooping. You also concentrate on some common signs, including sniffling, running around, moaning, leaving the room and pacing. When you notice these behaviors, take the puppy out as quickly as possible and to the ruled place for pooping. 

 

Train your puppy: How to socialize

Socializing your puppy when he is young will build his confidence, make him friendlier toward strangers and other dogs, and help him learn to remain calm and respectful outside of your house. You should bring your puppies outside and let them discover everything around. You might also consider allowing your dog to attend training sessions. This helps puppies learn from their friends, and their owners, as well as learn in a more entertaining environment. You can find puppy training classes through your veterinarian, extension service, or your local pet store.

 

Train your puppy: To not bite

Puppies like to gnaw a lot while their tiny fangs sprout. But sometimes, they don’t realize how hard their little bites can be. It is important to teach them not to bite you or others while they are still young. When playing with your puppy, you can allow him to gnaw his skin in case he has engaged in this behavior. If your puppy bites hard, you need to yell or shout ‘Ow!’ This will startle them and stop biting you. And after that, give your doggie a treat or say, “Good boy/girl,” when they listen. When you see your dog grabbing things such as shoes, furniture, or socks, take them away and reprimand them with words. You also can instruct your puppy to move on to chewing on other objects, such as toys, and praise them when they start chewing on them. This step helps your dog see what is possible and cannot be bitten..

 

Train your puppy: To not chew the furniture

Nothing is worse than coming home to find a pillow torn up or your shoes chewed to pieces.  Much like nipping, a teething pup also tends to chew anything and everything to relieve their sore gums. This is the optimal time for you to encourage “appropriate chewing” by letting your dog know which things they can and can’t chew. If your puppy continues to chew on the items in the house, use a flavor repellant, such as a bitter apple, to prevent them from chewing on them. You also should give them toys that they can pick up and carry around in their mouth like a ball or rubber toy. 

 

Train your puppy: How to be home alone

Your puppy’s independence is a good goal to keep in mind when learning how to train your puppy. It’s best to start teaching your dog to be independent while you are still indoors by putting them in a crib or exercise pen. Turn it into a fun, relaxing environment with toys and food to keep them occupied and feel full when you’re away. After the puppy has entered the house, gently close the door and leave the room. After a minute or two, come back with a delicious treat or compliments. Repeat this process and gradually increase the amount of time you spend away from the dog. If they continue to be quiet and calm, reward them. Each time you return, make sure you don’t take too much care of them as that will only make them miss you more when you leave.

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Can Cats and Dogs Eat the Same Thing?

Many people mistakenly believe that pets eat everything, and that cats and dogs can eat the same. This isn’t the case, and many human foods are considered very harmful to them.

We need to consider that food elaborated for different species contains ingredients that satisfy the nutritional and caloric requirements of each one of them.

In addition, size, age, species and characteristics of the pet determine what it should ingest, its content, frequency and quantity. This will make the difference between good nutrition and malnutrition.

Although dog and cat food or processed food are very similar, they differ considerably. This can be verified by reading the product label. In this article, we’ll see information about what cats’ and dogs’ diets need to include, and the reasons why they shouldn’t eat the same.

Cats vs. Dogs: Nutrition

Cats and dogs have different dietary requirements. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that cats must eat meat. It’s a biological necessity. Dogs, contrary to some beliefs, are omnivores, which means they eat meat and vegetables, so they need a more varied diet than just meat alone to meet their nutritional requirements.

Cat food is much higher in meat-based protein than dog food. This might be why cat food is so appealing to dogs, since the meat smell and flavor are so strong. However, just because dogs crave it doesn’t mean they should eat it.

Unless your veterinarian recommends otherwise, the best food for your dog is dog food, not cat food.

Cats’ nutritional requirements

In their evolution throughout history, cats have been kept on a carnivorous diet. That’s why they still require a high intake of protein and fat in their diet. That amount isn’t recommended for dogs.

We must also mention taurine, an organic antioxidant acid that protects the health of the feline heart as well as its brain, muscles and membranes. This substance also works as an important neurotransmitter. Its deficiency in the medium and long term causes blindness, nervous system problems, heart disease, and finally, death.

Likewise, an essential fatty acid required by cats is called arachidonic, which maintains the good health of their fur and skin.

Vitamins B1 and B12 should also be included in a good cat diet. B1 transforms glucose into energy for muscles functioning and the nervous system. B12 maintains the amount of red blood cells and optimizes iron levels in the body.

One of the indispensable nutrients cats is vitamin A. Canine food lacks this vitamin because the dog’s body produces it. In general, cats need more vitamins in their diets than their canine companions.

Dogs’ nutritional requirements

In the early stages of their evolution, dogs became strictly carnivorous, but later on, they developed a more varied diet. This led them to become the omnivores they are today.

The commercial feeds on the market include all the necessary components to maintain their optimal nutrition and health.

One of the dietary components required by the dog’s metabolism is beta-carotene. The body processes beta-carotene into vitamin A, which is a great antioxidant. It helps maintain a healthy vision, reproductive processes, and the bone and epithelial systems.

As an illustrative example of another important vitamin, while cats require 30 units per kilogram of vitamin E, dogs need 50 units. As we can see, dogs require less fat and protein than cats.

Canine diets must include two essential fatty acids: linoleic acid and alpha-linoleic acid. These nourish the muscles and the fur, create hormones and generate necessary elements for the cells.

Complications of Feeding Cat Food to Dogs

If your dog eats a lot of cat food on a regular basis, or if you are feeding your dog a diet of cat food instead of dog food, complications may arise, as it does not have the correct balance of protein, fiber, and all of the nutrients dogs need to stay healthy.

Dogs can certainly survive on cat food in a tough spot, but the nutrient imbalance can lead to gastrointestinal upset, obesity, and pancreatitis. Pancreatitis requires immediate veterinary care. Symptoms include abdominal pain and a hunched back, lethargy and weakness, appetite loss, vomiting and diarrhea, a distended abdomen, and fever. Even if your dog eats cat food and suffers no obvious ill effects, the high protein levels can be hard on his liver and kidney.

Consequences of an inadequate diet in pets

If dogs and cats live together in the same house, it’s very likely that, from time to time, they will eat from each other’s feeders. If it’s occasional, there’s no problem, but it shouldn’t become a habit. To avoid this, there should be a separation.

In the medium and long term, an inadequate diet in pets will cause vomiting, diarrhea and other discomforts. In the long term, the impact is more serious, as kidney and liver damage may occur.

Conclusions

In conclusion, cats and dogs can’t eat the same food because they run the risk of malnutrition, with possible consequences for their health. Given everything mentioned above, it’s clear how harmful it can be to give the pet food that doesn’t correspond to its species. The consequences are even more significant in the case of felines.

The recommendation is clear: cats and dogs can’t eat the same thing. Hence, a veterinarian should indicate the best diet and provide quality products that guarantee an optimal health state.

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Dogs Feeding Time: Things Need to Know

What dogs eat

It’s important to remember all dogs are individuals, and what diet might be fine for your friend’s dog may be completely inappropriate for your dog. When it comes to a daily diet for your dog, it’s important to consult with your vet.

Domesticated dogs are largely carnivores that eat some omnivorous foods.1 Dr Leigh from Your Vet Online advises that it is important to ensure your dog’s food is both complete and balanced for its stage of life, and if it has any medical issues.

It is entirely acceptable to feed your dog a pure kibble diet. Or you can mix their diet up with some cooked or raw meat, fish, vegetables and rice.

Many owners like to feed a raw meat diet to their dogs, and while this can suit some dogs very well, there are some important considerations you need to be aware of. Experienced vet Dr Leigh Davidson suggests the following.

Choose human-grade meat as some pet meat and bone products will contain preservatives that can be bad for your dog’s health.

Practice impeccable food hygiene as the risk of both you and your dog getting a food-borne bacterial infection such as campylobacter or salmonella is high.

Have a veterinary nutritionist formulate the diet for you. Many raw diets are not balanced appropriately for stage of life or medical conditions.

A small amount of cooked meat such as boiled chicken or lamb is an option for dogs to eat, but avoid cooked bones or toxic substances such as onion sauces that may be present on the meat.

Tinned sardines, tinned tuna, and tinned salmon in spring water can be fed as an occasional treat to your dog, but always check for fish bones first.

Don’t be scared to bulk out your dog’s meal with cooked pumpkin or raw grated carrot. According to Dr Leigh, many dogs lack enough fibre in their diet, and the addition of cooked pumpkin or grated carrot can improve their bowel health.

Be careful to make sure your dog isn’t consuming the whole bone as this can lead to constipation.

Generally, one to two bones a week is sufficient to help remove plaque from teeth. Remember, the bone should be large enough that the dog can’t fit it in its mouth whole, and they should be raw – cooked bone can splinter, which can cause internal damage or obstruct the intestine, both of which can be fatal.

How often should I feed my dog?

Puppies should be fed 4 meals a day, bringing this down to 3 meals a day at the age of 4 months until your pup is 6 months. It is important that the puppy is fed a diet designed for its age and breed size. There are diets specifically designed for puppies and young dogs which will ensure the growing dog receives the nutrition required for healthy growth and bone development. Browse our puppy food here.

For dogs of 12 months or older, feed 1-2 times a day. Small breeds burn energy quicker than large breeds and should be fed 2-3 small meals a day. Little and often is key! Browse our adult & senior dog foods here.

How much should I feed my dog?

Choose a high-quality dog food and look at the recommendations on the label. Most high-quality dog foods recommend approximately 1-1/2 cups per 10kg of body weight per day for smaller breeds, since they require 15-25% more calories per pound than larger breeds. Large and giant breeds are more often fed 1 cup per 10kg.

You must also consider the following, and adjust the food amount accordingly:

Actual calorie content of the food, current weight and projected target weight if necessary

The activity level of your dog, low/moderate etc

Other environmental variables (temperature)

Any additional calories from treats or table foods

Does the amount to be fed in the feeding guidelines pertain to each meal or the daily amount?

What foods should I avoid feeding my dog?

Chocolate contains theobromine which can cause increased heart rate, restlessness and vomiting. In large doses, it may be fatal.

Grapes and raisins are toxic to dogs and can cause renal failure.Onions may cause anemia, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain and nausea. Such poisoning is particularly dangerous in Akitas but all breeds can show signs of toxicity.

Garlic is also part of the onion family. In large doses, it may cause dermatitis and asthma. Some owners, however, use garlic tablets as a natural flea repellent. Always follow the dosage instructions carefully.

Lactose, which is found in milk and dairy products, cannot be digested by dogs.

Fruit can be high in sugar and can also be acidic. This will upset your dog’s digestion if overfed. Avocados and cherries should be avoided but others such as strawberries, apples, and blueberries can be given in moderation. They are packed full of vitamins, fibre, and antioxidants.

Feeding potatoes are not recommended due to their high starch content, which is not easily digested by dogs and may cause problems.

Many common household and garden plants and flowers such as the Daffodil can also be toxic to dogs, causing anything from skin irritations to severe poisoning and death.

Feeding Tips:

It is better to stick to one variety of good quality “complete balanced” dog food and not add any supplements unless instructed by your vet. Over supplementing can be harmful to your dog.

Be wary of overfeeding. Not all dogs can or need to eat the amount recommended by the food manufacturers. The right amount should produce firm, dark brown, crinkly stools. If the stools are firm but get softer towards the end, this is a classic sign of overfeeding.

Never change your dog’s diet abruptly (unless under the direction of your vet). If you want to change its diet, do it gradually over a period of 7 – 10 days.

Do not feed your dog before traveling in the car as this can encourage car-sickness, or an hour before or after exercise as this could contribute to a stomach dilation and torsion (also known as bloat) which is a life-threatening condition requiring immediate veterinary intervention.

Medium to large breeds of dogs should be fed from a raised bowl to prevent them from swallowing air while they eat, which can also contribute to bloat. For owners of breeds who are thought to be susceptible to this condition, you should seek advice from your breeder or vet on further precautionary measures.

Leave your dog in peace while it is eating from its bowl. Taking the bowl away while it is eating causes anxiety, which can lead to aggressive behaviour. If you want to be sure that your dog is comfortable with you approaching it during mealtimes, add a little food to the bowl while it is eating, so it sees you as an asset, rather than a threat.

Never feed your dog from the table or your plate, as this encourages drooling and attention-seeking behaviours such as begging and barking.

Make sure that water is always available to your dog, so never take its water bowl away.

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How Much Dogs Sleep A Day?

Dogs, like people, need their sleep. Without enough they can be restless, edgy, and prone to health problems just like humans.

There are surprisingly many similarities between the sleep of dogs and people. Both dogs and humans produce sleep hormones like melatonin, both experience rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, and both dream. Despite these similarities, dogs have very different sleep routines.

In general, domesticated dogs sleep considerably more than people do. They have shorter, more frequent sleep cycles, and wake-up more rapidly. The amount of sleep they need depends on the age of the dog, the size and breed, health and lifestyle considerations, any special circumstances, and the dog’s purpose.

 

The reasons dogs sleep so much more than humans is still being understood. There are a number of theories about the needs of sleep in different canines. Dogs, part of the canine family of wolves, foxes, and coyotes, are actually descended specifically from wolves that are nocturnal.

To better understand why domesticated dogs sleep so much, and what that sleep looks like, as well as considerations for better sleep, read on.

How much dogs sleep a day?

By nature, dogs tend to sleep a lot! Whether it’s draped over the foot of your bed at night or dozing on the warm patio during the day, rest assured your dog is probably napping in some form or another while you’re away.

It turns out that dogs in general need a lot of sleep. But how much is normal?

The average adult dog sleeps between 12 and 14 hours per day, amounting to about half of the day. Of the remaining half, they rest a great deal, and only stay awake and remain active about 20 percent of the day or between 4-5 hours.

Certain factors should be considered what determining how much your dog should sleep. These include the following.

Age of the Dog

How old your dog is has an effect on the amount he or she will sleep. Like humans, the youngest and oldest of the species require more sleep. Puppies need an average of 18-20 hours of sleep per day and older dogs need as much as 16-18 hours per day.

Size and Breed

As a general rule, the larger the dog, the more sleep they need. We all know the stereotypes of small very energetic dogs like Jack Russel terriers that seem to go, go, go all day, and great big breeds like Saint Bernard’s that sleep all day. The larger breeds like Bernese Mountain Dogs and Newfoundland’s can sleep up to 18 hours per day.

Health and Lifestyle Considerations

Health and sleep for dogs are related in two different ways. Health conditions can affect sleep and poor sleep can affect health. A bit of a chicken or egg kind of question, but poor health can make a dog sleep too much or too little, and excess sleep in particular can be a sign of a serious health condition.

For example, if your pet doesn’t get enough exercise, or has a poor diet, that can compromise sleep. The same is true of aches and pains, which can happen from poor nutrition or aging, and may cause your dog to have trouble sleeping well.

On the other end, too much sleep, especially out of the blue, can indicate they are not feeling well. Sometimes excess sleep is a sign of canine diabetes, thyroid problems, Lyme disease, or depression. Check with your veterinarian about any concerns.

Specific Circumstances

Dogs are creatures of habit that thrive on routine and can easily adhere to a pattern of learned behavior. Major changes like a day out of routine, travel, a move, or the death of a family member or other pet in the household, can all cause your dog to change their sleep habits. Many will respond to change by sleeping additional hours. A lesser number will respond with anxiety and have trouble sleeping.

Purpose

What gives a dog’s life meaning helps determine how much they sleep. If they are working dogs and awake all day, they seem to do fine just sleeping at night and managing with less sleep overall.

Domesticated animals have sleep-awake patterns more predicated on the engagement and expectations of the humans around them than on a predetermined biological need for a certain amount of sleep.

Are they a hunting dog? Do they live on a farm? Do they work as a herding dog, a service dog, or a police dog? The purpose they serve on a daily basis, even if that purpose is to guard the house or yard, will govern their sleep schedule and amounts.

Sleep Hygiene Tips for Dog Owners

What helps a dog get better sleep? Not surprisingly it is very similar to what helps humans sleep well. In short, a healthy life equates to healthy sleep. The basics include:

  • Proper Nutrition: A well-balanced diet, clean water, and regular meals.
  • Adequate Amounts of Exercise: Dogs need daily exercise, walks, throwing the ball, running and hiking should all be part of a dog’s life.
  • Sunlight: Exposure to sunlight increases melatonin and helps with sleep.
  • A Comfortable Bed: Although we see dogs sleeping on cement, a comfortable, secure place to sleep makes a huge difference.
  • Enough Stimulation: Dogs need engagement, playing ball or Frisbee, interacting with other dogs, guarding the yard, barking at intruders, riding in the car, going to new places.
  • Supplemental Melatonin: Just like with people, dogs can take supplemental melatonin if needed. Check with your veterinarian.

Dogs, a member of the canine family, are probably naturally nocturnal and used to sleeping during the day. They have shorter repetitive sleep cycles and sleep on average more than humans, anywhere from 12 to 20 hours per day depending on age, breed, and various circumstances. For dogs, good health contributes to good sleep and vice versa.

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How to Care for Your Dog’s Teeth at Any Age

Just like people, dogs need regular dental care, but unfortunately, dental hygiene for dogs is sometimes overlooked. Many people seem to just expect dogs to have bad breath, and few people brush their dogs’ teeth frequently enough.

Dental hygiene is just as important to your dog’s overall health as things like nutrition, proper exercise, and routine grooming. There are several things you can do to help keep your dog’s teeth in good shape. Start a dental care routine as early as possible in your dog’s life and stick with it.

10 Reasons to Take Care of Your Dog’s Teeth

1.Reduce bad doggy breath! Persistent bad breath, in fact, is sign of periodontal disease.

2.Oral health affects the whole system. Periodontal disease can lead to infections that introduce bacteria into other parts of the body. Studies have shown that dogs with severe periodontal disease have more severe microscopic damage to their kidneys, heart muscle, and liver. Research shows that inflammation in any part of the body can have a negative impact on your pet’s internal organs.

3.Good dental care can extend a dog’s life. And what better reason than that?

4.Addressing dental issues can result in a new dog! There’s not a veterinarian who hasn’t seen the remarkable improvement in a patient that’s had one or more painful teeth removed.

5.Dental exams cover more than just the teeth. They begin with a comprehensive oral examination to evaluate structures of the face, head, and neck. Intra-oral structures are then examined ,including the teeth and soft tissues.

6.Oral exams allow a veterinarian to identify painful problems including broken teeth, periodontal disease, or even oral tumors.

7.Dental probing and X-rays are how experts find the deeper pathology. Many pets, particularly middle-aged and older cats and dogs, require periodic professional scaling in addition to ongoing plaque control.

8.Exams catch disease early. If you don’t catch periodontal disease in time, the gums become irritated, leading to bleeding and oral pain. The roots may become so severely affected that some teeth become loose and fall out.

9.Periodontal disease is difficult to treat. It’s much easier to prevent than to cure.

10.Veterinary anesthesia has become very safe. Veterinary anesthesia practices have advanced significantly with widespread use of safer anesthetic gases to provide comfort and reduce surgical stress. Additionally, a tech is always on hand to monitor.

Preparing to Care for Your Dog’s Teeth

Catching teeth problems early will help avoid severe dental disease. The simplest way to keep track of your dog’s teeth is to look at them on a regular basis and be aware of signs that may indicate a problem. Routine veterinary examinations are also important.

To inspect your dog’s teeth, lift the lips all around the mouth, looking at the front and back teeth as closely as possible. Be gentle and use caution so you do not startle your dog (and may get you bitten).

Watch for the following signs:

Halitosis (bad breath)

Reluctance to chew or crying out when chewing

Increased salivation

Red, puffy, or bleeding gums

Tartar (calculus), a brown or yellow coating on teeth caused by plaque

Missing and/or loose teeth

What You Need

Special toothbrush for dogs

Dental dog chews

Dental additives for dog’s water

Brush Your Dog’s Teeth

Tooth brushing is the best preventive measure when it comes to oral hygiene and should be done daily in order to be most effective. Start when your dog is a puppy so it gets used to the feeling of having its teeth brushed. Puppies have 28 deciduous teeth that typically are all in when they are about eight weeks of age and then are replaced by adult teeth by about six months of age. By this time, your dog should be on a regular tooth brushing routine.

There are specially designed toothbrushes which are well-suited for dogs’ teeth and easier to use than the ones designed for people. Some are shaped like small finger caps; you slip the cap over your index finger and rub the dog’s teeth with the textured surface. Any small, soft-bristled toothbrush can work well, however. Use a toothpaste designed for dogs to maximize the effectiveness of tooth brushing.

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How to Train Your Dog

Are you ready to start training your dog or puppy? Proper training and socialization are among your dog’s basic needs. It’s important to start training your dog as soon as possible.

At first, dog training can seem pretty overwhelming, especially if this is your first dog. The truth is that training your dog is a very big project. If you take it step by step, you will find the task to be far less daunting. Here is some information to help get you started:

– Start a Dog Obedience Program: Learn how to set a basic foundation before you begin to train your dog.

– Train Your Dog Using Games: Training your dog should be fun! Everyone knows it’s easier to learn when you are having a good time, so try implementing some games into your dog training regimen.

– Six Weeks to a Well-Trained Dog: Using this schedule as a guide, you can teach your dog the basics in about six weeks.

– Positive Reinforcement: There are many different ways to train a dog, but most dog professionals agree that the positive way is the best for both the dog and trainer.

Basic Commands and Fun Tricks

There are some basic dog training commands and dog tricks that every dog should know like come, speak, drop it, stay, back up, etc. Basic commands give your dog structure. In addition, they can help you overcome common dog behavior problems and will help keep your dog safe.

Here’re 5 essential commands your dog needs to know:

1. Sit

This is one of the easiest dog obedience commands to teach, so it’s a good one to start with.

Hold a treat close to your dog’s nose.

Move your hand up, allowing his head to follow the treat and causing his bottom to lower.

Once he’s in sitting position, say “Sit,” give him the treat, and share affection.

Repeat this sequence a few times every day until your dog has it mastered. Then ask your dog to sit before mealtime, when leaving for walks, and during other situations where you’d like him calm and seated.

2. Come

This command can help keep a dog out of trouble, bringing him back to you if you lose grip on the leash or accidentally leave the front door open.

Put a leash and collar on your dog.

Go down to his level and say, “Come,” while gently pulling on the leash.

When he gets to you, reward him with affection and a treat.

Once he’s mastered it with the leash, remove it — and practice the command in a safe, enclosed area.

Dog – Australian Shepherd playing in the Beach

3. Down

This can be one of the more difficult commands in dog obedience training. Why? Because the position is a submissive posture. You can help by keeping training positive and relaxed, particularly with fearful or anxious dogs.

Find a particularly good smelling treat, and hold it in your closed fist.

Hold your hand up to your dog’s snout. When he sniffs it, move your hand to the floor, so he follows.

Then slide your hand along the ground in front of him to encourage his body to follow his head.

Once he’s in the down position, say “Down,” give him the treat, and share affection.

Repeat it every day. If your dog tries to sit up or lunges toward your hand, say “No” and take your hand away. Don’t push him into a down position, and encourage every step your dog takes toward the right position. After all, he’s working hard to figure it out!

4. Stay

Before attempting this one, make sure your dog is an expert at the “Sit” command.

First, ask your dog to “Sit.”

Then open the palm of your hand in front of you, and say “Stay.”

Take a few steps back. Reward him with a treat and affection if he stays.

Gradually increase the number of steps you take before giving the treat.

Always reward your pup for staying put — even if it’s just for a few seconds.

This is an exercise in self-control for your dog, so don’t be discouraged if it takes a while to master, particularly for puppies and high-energy dogs. After all, they want to be on the move and not just sitting there waiting.

5. Leave it

This can help keep your dog safe when his curiosity gets the better of him, like if he smells something intriguing but possibly dangerous on the ground! The goal is to teach your pup that he gets something even better for ignoring the other item.

– Place a treat in both hands.

– Show him one enclosed fist with the treat inside, and say, “Leave it.”

– Let him lick, sniff, mouth, paw, and bark to try to get it — and ignore the    behaviors.

– Once he stops trying, give him the treat from the other hand.

– Repeat until your dog moves away from that first fist when you say, “Leave it.”

– Next, only give your dog the treat when he moves away from that first fist and also looks up at you.

Once your dog consistently moves away from the first treat and gives you eye contact when you say the command, you’re ready to take it up a notch. For this, use two different treats — one that’s just all right and one that’s a particularly good smelling and tasty favorite for your pup.

– Say “Leave it,” place the less attractive treat on the floor, and cover it with your hand.

– Wait until your dog ignores that treat and looks at you. Then remove that treat from the floor, give him the better treat and share affection immediately.

– Once he’s got it, place the less tasty treat on the floor… but don’t completely cover it with your hand. Instead hold it a little bit above the treat. Over time, gradually move your hand farther and farther away until your hand is about 6 inches above.

– Now he’s ready to practice with you standing up! Follow the same steps, but if he tries to snatch the less tasty treat, cover it with your foot.

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