How To Stop Your Fur-Legged Friend from Barking at Strangers

We love our dogs a lot as they provide us with a lot of joy, but excessive barking can be very difficult to handle, especially on a daily basis. Many dogs will naturally begin to bark when they see someone they do not recognize. Although this is a good thing in some instances, in most, it is unnecessary and annoying. The repeated sound of a barking dog will also eventually annoy neighbors and could land you in hot water with your local authorities. So how do you teach your dog not to bark at strangers?

Why do dogs bark at people they do not know?

First, let’s look at why dogs bark at people in general. The most common reasons are:

General excitement bark: Simply said, dogs are excited to see and interact with new people! Most dogs are very social creatures, and when approached by someone new, they are eager to meet and interact with them. To determine if the barking is excited-based, look at their tail. A highly energetic and wagging tail typically means a happy and excited dog.

Territorial bark: Many dogs are territorial of their home, property, and family. Some dogs view a stranger as someone who is not authorized to be at their home and or as a potential threat to the family living there. The territorial bark is used to warn the stranger to stay away. It is also used to alert the dog’s family that a possible intruder is approaching for safety.

Lack of socialization bark: Dogs that have not been raised in social environments tend not to know what to do when a new face is observed. Barking is a natural reaction in dogs, and this behavior may take place by default. Allow your dog to socialize with other people and pets, which will help him to better accept new people. Fear bark: Your dog may have just been alarmed! Even dogs that are properly socialized and who are not overly territorial can be alarmed and begin to bark. Dogs are designed, for the most part, to be alert and to guard. This can happen to even the most laidback pup, who will bark when scared.

How To Stop The Unwanted Behavior

Do not overreact to their barking. Dogs that bark for attention know their barking is effective when they get a reaction from their human family. Like a child who acts a certain way when he or she needs attention, dogs do too. Limiting your reaction will allow your pup to see that his barking will not result in any attention.

Walk Away

When you walk away from a dog, he recognizes there is no reward. When he barks at someone and you walk away, he may begin to associate the excessive barking with something he should not do. Paying too much attention to the negative behavior may end up making it worse.

Distracting Them

On the flip side, some dogs need a distraction in order to take away their focus on what is causing them to bark. If your dog begins to bark, simply distract them with noise. This can be accomplished by shaking your keys, slapping your hands, whistling, or using one of his favorite squeaky toys. If this is effective, he should be rewarded, which will associate positive behavior with a reward.

Need To Remember You should not forget that your dog is a dog. Dogs do bark and do get excited for various reasons. It is in their DNA! Being patient with your dog is needed in all instances. Although excessive barking can be a nuisance, keeping cool and not overreacting is a great first step in managing it. Your dog can tell when you are stressed, so a calm and patient demeanor with him is what will yield the best results.

How To Handle Broken Nails on Our Puppies

Our pups love to play and, at times, can play hard. A very common injury for our pups is a split or broken toenail. These can cause pain and great discomfort to our fur-legged friends, and knowing what to do when this happens is very important. Although a very simple injury, it is one that should be treated quickly and properly.

What Causes Dogs’ Nails to Break?

Dogs have a total of nine toes. Five toes on their front paws and four on their back paws. Their nails grow throughout their entire life and often require trimming to keep them at a comfortable length. Overgrown toenails on dogs can cause discomfort since they are in constant contact with the ground they walk on. We need to remember that they are not just walking on a soft carpet. Outdoor terrain can be hard and rough, which can cause their nails to break and or split. Imagine how you would feel running around outside without shoes on.

Why are a Dog’s Broken Nails Problematic?

Our pup’s toenails should always be taken seriously, as damaged toenails can lead to greater health issues. The injury is not only painful but can limit their mobility and quality of life. Inside their nails are clusters of nerves and blood vessels. An untreated broken toenail can lead to an infection that is capable of spreading into the dog’s leg, which will require much greater medical care. This is one of the main reasons why tending to his toenails is so important.

Nails

How To Treat A Broken a Nail

When in doubt, contacting your veterinarian is always recommended. If you treat the injured toenail at home, you should initially restrain your dog in a way that allows you to safely examine the injured toenail. This will help prevent you from being bit and or scratched and will make the process safer and easier. Your pup will be in pain and most likely not want you near the injured paw. If your dog’s nail is bleeding and he will allow you to touch the area, begin to address the bleeding by applying light pressure to the area. Keep the light pressure applied for several minutes and until the bleeding stops. After the bleeding is under control, apply an anti-bacterial ointment or cleansing solution to the injured area. Bleeding that does not stop after fifteen minutes should be looked at by a veterinarian. After the area is properly cleaned, allow it to air dry. Applying a bandage over the area may not allow it to dry out as desired and is a potential safety hazard should your dog try and chew the bandage. If you happen to observe a small section of the nail hanging from the area, you can attempt to remove it yourself by carefully trimming it. This should only be done if your dog is tolerating the pain and relaxed enough to allow you to. After doing so, let your dog time to relax before allowing him to run free, especially outside.

How Long Does It Take a Dog to Fully Recover from A Broken Toenail? Although all dogs are different and all injuries vary, generally speaking, your dog will need about two weeks before his nail is completely back to normal. You should start seeing improvement within the first 48 to 72 hours. This will greatly depend on how quickly you treated the injury, the overall extent of the injury, and if your dog did not reinjure it before it began to heal. Remembering to use anti-bacterial ointments or cleansing solutions as soon as possible also helps to prevent the area from becoming infected, which can certainly set back your pup’s recovery time.

Is Your Dog Getting Enough Exercise?

As the saying goes, an object in motion stays in motion. That could not be any truer when it comes to our dogs. Exercise is a key ingredient in keeping our pups looking and feeling their best. There are many ways for our fur-ever friends to get their daily amount of required exercise.

Indoor Versus Outdoor Activities

Exercise is exercise. The key is keeping your pup moving which helps to speed up his heart rate, use all of his muscles and burn calories. Most pups enjoy the smells and looks of nature but on certain days (heavy rain, lots of snow, or extremely hot weather) indoor activities can be just as fun and beneficial.

Basic Outdoor Activities

The most common basic outdoor activities include a brisk walk, a fun game of fetch, or play wrestling with your dog. Dogs love human interaction and when fun is mixed into it allows for a better experience. It also provides a very good bonding experience which dogs naturally tend to seek.

Basic Indoor Activities

Some fun basic indoor activities include tug-of-war, hide and seek, and learning new tricks. Although these types of activities are not as active as outdoor activities, they will still allow your four-legged friend to burn extra energy and keep mentally alert. Remember, activity time is not just to stay physically fit, but mentally sharp too.

How Many Minutes A Day Should I Spend Exercising With My Dog?

Although every dog is different, one thing most people agree on is each dog should be on the move for at least thirty minutes a day. Certain breeds, like Retrievers, Spaniels, Collies, Pointers, and German Shepherds require more activity time than breeds such as the Bulldog, Basset Hound, Shih Tzu, Pug, and Chihuahua. Although each breed is different, thirty minutes a day is a relatively good goal to strive for. If your dog seeks more playtime, go for it!

Dog Exercise

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know If My Dog Reached His Activity Limit?

It is normal for dogs to pant while running and playing but this is a sign they are getting tired. Watch your pup’s tail. Is it wagging or straight down while he’s playing? A wagging tail is generally a sign that your dog is content, comfortable, and happy. Consider breaking the play time up into intervals and allow your pup to sit or lay down for a few minutes every fifteen minutes or so. This will also give you a small break to catch your breath too!

Will My Dog Overheat?

Heat exhaustion certainly is something that every dog owner needs to watch for. The most telling symptom of heat stroke in a dog is excessive panting. Other common symptoms may include general signs of discomfort, excessive drooling, reddened gums, vomiting, diarrhea, mental dullness or loss of consciousness, uncoordinated movement, and collapse. Should your pup ever reach this level immediate medical care is needed. The key, however, is to monitor your dog while outside playing before he begins to overheat.

What Can I Do to Keep My Dog Feeling Good During Activity Time?

Fresh water! Water is essential as it hydrates your dog and helps to keep him cool. Although providing him with water during activity time is very important, making sure he is properly hydrated before and during activity, time is also necessary. Don’t wait for your pup to show signs of dehydration before giving him a refreshing bowl of water.

Is Activity Time in Cold Weather Safe?

Outdoor activity time in the cold is safe, however, proper precautions should be taken. A very overlooked aspect of this has to do with what we focus on in the warm months, hydration. During the cold winter months, the humidity levels in the atmosphere are much lower. With the lower humidity, your dog can easily become dehydrated if he or she is not drinking enough water. Keeping your dog bundled up, preferably with an insulated dog sweater is a great start. Properly sized dog shoes also will also help to keep his paws warm and dry. You wouldn’t want to walk outside on snow or ice without protection and neither does your pup!

Practice Makes Perfect

Establishing a good routine for your dog while he’s still a puppy will allow him to grow into a healthy and active adult dog. Forming good habits at a young age will also help to assure many years of feeling and looking great. Take the time each day to show your pup why he’s known as man’s best friend!

Tips For Taking Your Dog on Vacation

It’s that time of the year when many of us take our annual vacation. For those of us who plan to bring our fur-legged friend on vacation, it is wise to plan ahead to ensure your pup has an enjoyable experience. Whether it be a road trip or a flight, proper planning will help make your vacation easier and safer for your dog.

Road Trip Vacations.

Traveling with a pet by way of motor vehicle involves more than just having him hop in the back seat and taking off. This, especially if you will be driving for an extended period of time. Here are a few car travel safety tips to help you prepare for a more enjoyable and comfortable journey.

Prepare, prepare, prepare. For first-time dog travelers, a good way to get your dog accustomed to long road trips is by taking him for shorter trips ahead of time. Building up his tolerance to car rides before taking him on a long trip is a good way to start.

If you are traveling to another state, it is a good idea to bring a copy of your pup’s vaccination records. Each state has its own set of animal laws, and having a copy of these documents readily available will save time and effort should they be needed.

Have a pet travel kit prepared before leaving. Inside this kit include a few of your pup’s favorite toys, a leash, a collar, a small backup bag of dog food, and a few bottles of drinking water. For dogs who prefer to ride on the car’s seat versus in a crate, consider a properly sized safety dog harness. Buckle up for safety!

It is also important to make sure to double-check your dog’s identification tag on his collar. If in the event he escapes your care, the person who finds him will be able to more easily identify who he is and who to contact. You should also take into consideration your pet’s potty needs. If you plan to pull off of the roadway to allow him to do his business, make sure you have disposable waste bags and a disposable container to put the waste bags in after use.

Traveling By Air

Air travel is certainly a quicker method of transportation but much more stressful for your dog. It will require him to be away from his family and in a crate in a different and loud environment. Many dogs do not handle air travel well and this form of transportation for them should only take place if absolutely necessary. Below are some travel tips for dog owners who plan to fly their dogs.

Book a direct flight to your destination if possible. This will allow your dog to get situated in one area versus having to be transported from plane to plane. It will also limit the amount of time he has to be in a crate and away from his family.

Consider purchasing a USDA approved dog transportation crate. The crate should be large enough for your pet to comfortably stand, turn around and sit in. Inside the crate, include one of your t-shirts. Your pup will be comforted with this due to him being able to smell your scent while he is away from you. Be sure to secure at least two forms of identification on this crate which include your name, phone number, and address. Make sure your dog doesn’t overeat leading up to the flight. Chances are the flight will cause him stress and an upset stomach could lead to vomiting and or diarrhea.

Tips For Keeping Your Dog Safe After You Arrived

Scope out the area where you are staying before letting your pup explore. Certain destinations will have areas designated just for dogs to play in. Be sure to keep him well secured on a leash and collar and be mindful of other dogs in the area. Remember, not all dogs are as friendly and outgoing as yours. Even though you are all on vacation and most likely taking the day as it comes, try and keep your pup on his routine feeding schedule. This will allow him to feel a sense of normalcy and better his chances of keeping his outdoor potty time schedule the same.

Are Your Dogs Ready for the 4th of July?

The 4th of July is incomplete without festivities and fireworks. While your dog may be fine with the festivities, and maybe even have a great time, they may not be prepared for the fireworks. 

This is because the bright flashes, loud sounds coming from multiple directions and the not-so-pleasant smell of explosives can be a lot to take in. 

As a result, it is important to prepare your pet for fireworks, and also, recall the festivities? Some foods may not be appropriate for your pet, and we would cover that here as well. 

Preparing Your Dog for Fireworks

First off, it is as good an idea as any to keep your dog away from fireworks altogether. However, if this is virtually impossible, then here are some tips that can help keep them calm:

  • Desensitize Your Dog: this involves getting them used to fireworks. You could play fireworks videos from time to time and give your pup treats and toys during. This allows them to create positive associations. 
  • Create a Safe Space for Your Pet: this could be their crate or any space they go to hide when they are scared. 
  • Provide Distractions: if your pup doesn't scare very easy, then toys or tasty treats may keep them distracted sufficiently.
  • Close the Blinds: this action prevents them from seeing the flashes that may instill even more fear. 
  • Exercise Your Pet: exercising your pet would help tire them out and reduce their energy and anxiety levels. 
  • Stay Home: if you can, by all means do stay at home. Having a familiar face and presence around would do wonders for their confidence. 

Do Not Eat List for Dogs

If you would be having a BBQ, here's a checklist of some foods that your pet shouldn't have access to: 

  • Meat bones
  • Alcohol 
  • Fruit platters 
  • Snack bowls 
  • Dessert table
  • Raw meat

Conclusion

You would definitely have a more pleasant celebration when you know that the welfare of your pet is in check. 

Let's Talk About Leash and Harness Training

Leash and harness training is an essential aspect of training your pup and generally goes easier when it is started very early. There are a number of benefits associated with starting training early in your pup's life. 

A major one is the fact that it facilitates good behavior. Walking on a leash helps your pet to inculcate lessons in discipline, cooperation, and obedience. In addition, learning this early can set the foundation for learning picking up other instructions along the line. 

For instance, your pet would likely be more responsive to learning skills like heel, behaving appropriately to other individuals and dogs who are walking together, as well as navigate a crowd with you politely without causing any trouble. 

In order to get your pet this well-trained, repetition is a vital aspect of this training. Constant practice with lots of positive reinforcement and praise could go a long way in ensuring that your pet picks up these lessons fast. 

Typically, you should not be walking your pup outdoors until they are around 12 weeks old, and have received all the necessary vaccinations. So, if your pup comes home earlier, you don't necessarily have to start right away. You could wait until they are around 10 weeks old before you begin to leash and collar train. 

A flat collar is ideal for wearing everyday and carrying the ID tag, however, many experts recommend using a harness alongside a leash for your pet. This is in the event of situations that could result in your pet pulling on the leash. With the harness in place, they would not experience any major strain against the neck. 

Conclusion 

Leash and harness training requires a lot of patience as well as a gentle hand. Be sure to praise effusively when your pup is getting it right and correct slowly otherwise. 

Summer Snacks to Make for Your Dog!

Summer months imply that you would be spending a lot of time indoors and avoiding the heat in the great outdoors. With so much time on your hands, why not embark on an incredible treat-making adventure. You would definitely have fun making them and your fur baby would no doubt have a great time helping out (trying to sneak a bite). 

Here are some treats that you can explore:

Peanut Butter Dog Doughnuts

This homemade dog donut is easy to make and very delicious too. The ingredients are within reach and there is no special process involved. Here are the necessary ingredients: 

  • 1 Cup Oats
  • 1 Cup flour
  • Cup peanut butter
  • Coconut oil
  • Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Eggs
  • Bacon Bits

Apple and Chicken Pup Pops

Think about popsicles, but for dogs. Your pup is sure to enjoy this refreshing treat just as much as kids love popsicles in summer. Here are the necessary ingredients: 

  • Cup water
  • Cup unsalted chicken broth
  • 1 Gala apple

You could use raw porkhide sticks, however, it is more ideal to use Enzy-Chews. They have the extra perk of tartar control and they are easier to digest as well. 

Yogurt Peanut Butter Banana

This is one of the most simple and straightforward treats for summer, and your pup is bound to love it. Here are the necessary ingredients: 

  • 3 Tablespoons of peanut butter (confirm that the brand you are opting for doesn't have any xylitol)
  • 1 large banana sliced 
  • 32 ounces plain yogurt (yogurt is an excellent source of calcium and double as a probiotic). 

Ensure that you do not add any artificial sweetener particularly those that have xylitol as a component because of its toxicity. 

Conclusion

These are some great treat ideas for your pet. In addition, ensure that your pet has access to water always so that they can stay hydrated.

This is Why You Need a Miniature Dachshund!

Daschunds can be traced all the way back to the Middle Ages. Their name is derived from two German words 'dach' meaning 'badger' and 'hund' meaning 'dog'. 

They were great hunting dogs with their keen sense of smell allowing them to hunt both above and below ground, tracking animal scents for extended periods. 

Over the years, different sizes emerged and in the U.S., there are three main sizes: the Normal, Miniature, and Toy. 

Overview of Mini Daschund

  • Common coat colors: chocolate, blue, tan, black & tan
  • Coat types: long-haired, wire-haired, smooth hair 
  • Average weight: 4kg to 5kg
  • Life expectancy: 12 to 15 years
  • Sociability: medium

Exercise

A miniature Daschund requires around 30 to 45 minutes of exercise daily. This breed has a lot of energy in spite of their seemingly little frame, and as a result, requires quite a bit of activity to tire them out. Keeping them in a secure environment where they can run off leash is one sure way to keep them healthy and happy. Ensure that they do not have occasion to jump a lot such as over holes and streams because dachshunds may experience back damage easily. 

Diet

A diet with sufficient basic nutrients as well as vitamins and minerals is a requirement for your miniature Dachshund. You should typically explore dog food formulated for small breeds to ensure that they get their required nutrition. For pups, 3 to 4 small servings during the day would suffice rather than two major meals. As your pup grows older, you could limit them to two major meals. 

Training

Training miniature dachshunds may take a little while because they are quirky and require a lot of patience when being trained. They have an affinity for responding to rewards and good feedback. They may also get distracted very easily when they see something that really interests them. 

Conclusion

Mini Dachshunds are a family-friendly breed that adapt as well to houses as they do apartments. They also work well for single individuals.

How Important is Having an ID Tag On Your Dog?

Having your dog wear an ID tag is essential. This measure serves as a major precaution in the event that your pet wanders off. An ID tag not only supplies details about your pet such as their name, it also provides valuable information about you, their owner, and how to contact you. So, to ensure that the ID is indeed effective, here are some tips to help:

Keep the Information Updated 

Information on your dog's ID tag is only as useful as can be when it is up to date. So, if you recently relocated or changed your phone number, be sure to go right ahead and update this information on your pet's ID. If you move often, then you should set up reminders that would help you recall.

Choose One That Works for You 

Dog tag IDs come in a range of sizes, shapes, colors, and types. There are some that are simply handwritten and slipped into a plastic, waterproof case. There are GPS versions that allow for easy tracking; some are silent while others may jingle. There are others that are extra strong and durable, specifically for breeds that may try to destroy their tags. Overall, be sure to opt for one that does the job and works for you.

Examine Tags Periodically 

There is a good chance that your dog's tag may have taken some damage at some point in time or perhaps, the written information is no longer so clear. This is why it is essential to check in periodically and confirm that it still works just fine. You should do this at regular intervals. 

Conclusion 

Dog ID tags are a standard precaution to keep your pet safe and ups your chances of recovering your pet in the unfortunate event of them getting lost. 

Picking the Best Food for Your Furry Friend

There is a range of food types that are generally well suited to be eaten by dogs. Wet food diets, kibble, organic, holistic food, and a range of others. However, the best type of food for your dog greatly depends on what would be the healthiest choice for them. 

In other words, high-quality food is one that has nutrient components that are required by your dog based on their breed and age or stage in life. Usually, the best way to pick a great diet for your dog is to talk to a nutritionist or veterinarian.

They are in the best position to make recommendations based on the needs of your pup, and they would be able to highlight the nutrients that are essential at that point in time. They can also help you avoid foods that could induce allergic reactions in your pet since your veterinarian has your pup's health records. 

In addition to consulting with experts, here are some tips that can help you along in the decision-making process: 

  • Learn about the constituents of dog food so that you know what to look out for 
  • Read labels and ingredients 
  • Note the grain and gluten constituent of the food
  • Check the by-products used in making the food, if any, and ensure that they are healthy for your pup
  • Keep an eye out for adequacy, it would typically read "this food is complete and balanced for all life stages"
  • Read up on information provided about the trial feeding stage 
  • Check out the analysis of nutrients provided on the label of the food
  • As a reminder, consult with your veterinarian 

Conclusion 

Your dog's food goes a long way in determining so much in their lives ranging from development to remaining in proper health. As such, you should pay close attention.