Wuff Wuff Doggy Daycare
Our Monthly Blog
Our Monthly Blog
An ongoing series of informative entries
An ongoing series of informative entries
Grooming your Dog
Grooming your Dog
- Grooming your dog regularly is essential for his or her welfare, whether it’s done professionally or at home.
- Owners should get their dogs used to being groomed at the earliest opportunity, ideally as a puppy.
- If your dog is frightened of being groomed, it’s important you get a handle on the problem straight away.
Grooming is vital to prevent your dog’s coat getting matted, (I have seen too many dogs having to be shaved as their fur became too matted) as well as removing dead hair, dirt and dandruff. Brushing also stimulates the natural oils in the skin and fur, which helps make for a glossy, healthy coat. But grooming isn’t just about brushing your dog’s fur, it’s also chance to check for any unusual lumps or bumps, and give them a general health check. You can use it as an opportunity to check for any signs of fleas or ticks, inspect their teeth, eyes and ears and make sure their claws aren’t overgrown. By getting into a regular grooming routine with your dog, it also gets them used to this type of handling, and should make visits to the vets much easier.
How often does my dog need grooming?
For a short haired, smooth-coated dog, grooming should be done at least once a week. A rough or long-coated dog will need much more regular grooming and will often require clipping to keep the fur at a manageable length. Clipping can be required anything from every four to 12 weeks, with regular – usually daily – maintenance brushes and cleaning in between.
Terrier types and some other breeds may need ‘stripping’ rather than normal grooming to remove dead hairs in the coat as these dogs don’t shed hair as well as others.Remember to:
Detangle any matts before washing as they will only get worse during shampooing
Purchase a dedicated dog shampoo as human products have different Ph balances
Saturate your dog’s fur with lukewarm water before applying the shampoo
Avoid the face, mouth and ear areas and sponge wash these with clean water instead
Massage the shampoo in for at least five minutes for a good, thorough cleanse
Ensure you rinse thoroughly as any shampoo residue can irritate your dog’s skin
Towel dry your dog or, if he or she is comfortable with a hairdryer, ensure it is put on a cool setting.
With Valentines almost upon us we ask how do you know your dog loves you?
Love is one of those strange things that you recognise when you see it but can’t really put your finger on describing exactly what it is… It’s just a ‘feeling’. A feeling of belonging, of security, of the world being a better place when you are with your beloved, and of knowing in your heart by how the other treats you, looks at you and acts around you that you are loved.
How do you know?
When we ask “does my dog love me?” it is exactly the same. You just know.
You know in the way they greet you when you’ve been away (even if only to the toilet!), in the way they look at you, in the way they check in with you to make sure you are still there or to see how to behave, in the way they want to be with you and close to you.
More than that, you see it in their body language when they are around you.
Love is pretty easy to spot in most dogs because almost every part of your dog’s body language expresses how they are feeling! Their eyes are soft and gentle when they look at you, and almost seem to be in soft focus with none (or very little) of the whites of the eyes showing (and they may even close slightly in pleasure). Their forehead and eyebrows are relaxed, and their ears are either floppy or else moving forward and back also in a gentle relaxed way.
While dogs don’t (generally!) smile like we do, a dog around the person they love will have loose lips, no tension around his mouth (especially at the corners) and their mouth will most likely be closed.
When it comes to their body, they are moving fluidly and with a bit of a swing to them. Again, there is no stiffness anywhere in their back or legs, just a bit of a joyful bounce! Or maybe a lot of excited Tigger-type bouncing…! Or maybe a relaxed sprawling out, secure in your company. It depends on your dog and how they show their love.
When we are around those we love, the world seems safe and a better place, and our dogs feel the same when they are with us – and it shows in relaxed body language that radiates contentment.
Some need to be close to you, even on you… Some solicit affection. Others love from afar – just as strongly, but without the need to be touching you all the time.
And as for the tail… When a dog is with someone they love, their tail is usually at mid height and is either swinging about in rhythm with the movements of their body, or it’s being deliberately wagged from side to side (and of course some dogs wag so hard the entire dog wags too!). Even when a dog is wagging ecstatically though, the tail is still relaxed and not stiff.
Once you have really looked at the body language of a loving dog, you will always be able to recognise it!!
Agility for Dogs
Agility for Dogs
Agility is a great outlet for physical and mental energy, it is great for helping your dog release their energy in a safe, fun way.
Provided your dog is healthy, they’ll have a blast learning new things, running around, and most importantly doing something fun with you.
It's ideal to let your dog release their energy in a safe, fun way. It's also great for mental energy release — after even a short session of agility practice, you’ll often have one tired pup.
It helps build your dog’s confidence, it can help them get over fears of unusual surfaces, small spaces, ‘scary’ situations, and completing tasks without being right by your side.
Plus, they’ll be rewarded after every exercise, run and session with their absolute favourite thing helping them build their confidence and trust in themselves even more.
The confidence built while practicing agility will even transfer over into other parts of your dog’s life too, whether that be confidence in new situations or meeting new people and dogs.
That's why, here at Wuff Wuff Doggy Daycare we use agility equipment, daily with your dogs, to keep them active, happy and to help build their confidence!
Enrichment for Dogs
Enrichment for Dogs
Enrichment enables dogs to explore and use their natural instincts. Enrichment activities can prevent boredom, build confidence, and teach a variety of skills such as problem-solving, searching and agility.
It allows them to sniff and chew appropriately. Plus, it’s the ideal way to manage their energy, encouraging calmer behaviour and helping them to learn good habits.
Enrichment should be provided daily and can be used throughout the day.
If your dog gets over excited, you can get out the snuffle mat.
Alternatively, if you want to keep them occupied while you are having dinner, give your dog an enrichment toy with some of their food inside. This will help to keep them safe and prevent them from chewing on things they shouldn’t – such as your favourite pair of slippers!
Enrichment also helps to prevent mouthing. While it is normal for puppies to do this, you need to help them learn what is appropriate for them to chew on.
We have a variety of puzzles, snuffle mats, lickie mats, kongs etc. to ensure your dog is stimulated in a numerous ways whilst they're with us.
Christmas Trees & Dogs
Christmas Trees & Dogs
There’s an estimated 6 – 8 million Christmas trees sold in the UK every year. They may elicit ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ from the whole family…but are Christmas trees dangerous for dogs?
Real Christmas Trees
Many owners worry that Christmas trees could be poisonous or toxic to dogs. So you’ll be happy to hear that all the common types – fir, spruce and pine – are non-toxic to dogs.
However, do a regular sweep or hoover of the pine needles it will invariably drop. Not only does this mean that you’re safe to walk around your own home in socks and no shoes, but pine needles aren’t very good for your dog’s digestive system. They can cause cuts in the mouth and throat and they don’t do much good when they come out the other end either…
Other than that little caveat though, real Christmas trees are absolutely fine to have in your dog-friendly home!
Artificial Christmas Trees
Plastic trees mean you avoid those pesky pine needles, which is a plus.
However, you’ll still want to supervise your dog around a plastic tree as these can be tempting to chew on – especially for young teething dogs.
Dog-friendly Christmas tree bonus tips:
Supervise – it’s best not to leave your dog alone with any tree for hours on end, so make sure it’s in a space they can’t reach when you are out.
Dog-safe Christmas tree decorations – if you can, avoid glass baubles which could lead to unwanted vet visits if they break.
Chocolate – Make sure any chocolate decorations are high enough that your dog can’t reach them.
Lights – make sure there’s no chance of your dog wrapping themselves in the lead for the lights and bringing the tree down on top of themselves.
Get ready to celebrate Christmas with your dog!
Once you’ve got a safe tree it’s time to party! Enjoy the magic of a Christmas tree in your home, with your dog, with no worries. Well, except for what to put under the tree for them to open when it’s present time of course…
Tips for Winter Walks
Whatever your dog’s view of the cold is, they need just as much exercise, stimulation and enrichment on cold days as they do every other day of the year – otherwise they will get bored, depressed or frustrated.
If you have a breed that is happy in the cold, wrap up warmly yourself and enjoy your usual long walks. Play games and keep active so your dog stays warm.
Watch out for snow drifts, ice, grit, antifreeze, frozen ponds and other winter hazards – and remember when crossing roads or walking around traffic that drivers might not be able to stop as quickly as usual.Use a reflective collar, harness and lead – and wear reflective clothing yourself – so you can be seen.
If you don’t like going out in the cold and the wet, that’s fine but see above. Your dog needs just as much stimulation on days when you don’t want to venture out – and they’ll enjoy interacting with you on training games, sniffaris, and enrichment toys far more than you dashing out and dashing back in again on a rushed dog walk that you hate every minute of.
When you come home, dry your dog off with a towel, as lying around wet is when they are most likely to get chilled – and if it has been snowy, check their paws for balls of snow between their toes.
The reality, is that in most cases, our dogs are far happier to go out on cold winter days than we are – and often we use them as an excuse not to just put a few more layers on and enjoy a wintry walk.
This subject is very close to my heart right now, having sadly lost one of our regular dogs to Cancer recently. Losing a pet is the hardest thing to bear, so hopefully this article will help you spot any early warning signs.
The 10 Early Warning Signs of Cancer in Dogs
Did you know that dogs over the age of 10 have a 50% chance of getting cancer? Even though the risk increases with age, cancer does not discriminate and it is important to know how to check your dog for warning signs.
1. Lumps and bumps underneath your pet’s skin
You can gently run your hands across your dog’s skin like this, feeling for abnormal lumps and bumps beneath the skin. Unfortunately, to the touch, you can’t tell if a lump is cancerous or not, so it’s best to have it tested by a vet.
2. Abnormal odours from the mouth, ears, or other parts of your dog’s body
If you notice an unusual smell coming from your dog’s mouth or ears, this is a warning sign of cancer in dogs. They may need a dental or have an ear infection. Tumours in the mouth can result in a bad smell too.
3. Non-healing wounds or sores
Persistent, non-healing wounds or sores can be a sign that your dog’s immune system isn’t functioning properly, or is busy combating another infection. Cancers can also look like non-healing sores.
4. Loss of appetite or weight loss
Loss of appetite or rapid weight loss is a sign that something isn’t right with your dog.
Sometimes this can relate to dental or other medical issues, and in other instances, it’s an indication of something more serious – particularly if it’s out of character for your dog, or is also combined with other warning signs of cancer in dogs.
5. Coughing or difficult breathing
If your dog has had a persistent cough for longer than a couple of days, or has started to display breathing difficulties, this can indicate more serious health issues that need to be investigated. Dogs don’t really get colds and coughs like humans, so this could be a sign of cancer in dogs.
6. Increased drinking or frequency of urinating
Increased drinking or urinating can be a warning sign for certain types of cancer in dogs, as well as other metabolic illnesses. If your dog has started to go outside multiple times in an evening, it’s time to get this checked.
7. Difficulty in swallowing
If your dog is having difficulty in swallowing then this may be a potential warning sign of throat and neck cancers. This is something you should be paying attention to.
8. Changes in bathroom habits
If your dog is starting to display trouble when urinating or is struggling or straining when defecating it could be an infection or a sign of cancer in dogs.
9. Evidence of pain
Some cancers, in particular bone cancer, show themselves through your dog presenting signs of pain or discomfort such as limping and lameness. f your dog is showing reluctance to do physical acts that were previously, it’s time for a check up.
10. Lower energy levels
If you dog is lethargic, and isn’t showing enthusiasm for its usual favourite activities, then you should be alert and have your pet checked.Lower energy levels can be a sign of different ailments in older pets, many of which can be treated, such as heart disease and cancer.
If you have concerns about any signs of cancer in your dog get them checked by your Vet as soon as possible.
Most non dog owners will never have heard of an anal gland but, for us, they can be quite important. For some individual pets, anal glands can become problematic and it is important that owners are aware of what they are and what can go wrong with them.
What are anal glands in dogs?
As humans do not have anal glands, many of us are unfamiliar with what they are. They are small sacs; about the size of a cherry, that sit inside the anus. If we were to say the anus was a clock face, the glands are found at about 4 and 8 o’clock.
The sacs are lined with sebaceous glands and they produce a strong, foul-smelling liquid that dogs use to mark territory and communicate with other dogs in the vicinity.
Anal glands cannot be seen externally and can only be felt by inserting fingers into the anus.
One of the obvious signs of anal gland issues is ‘the scoot’. Scooting or bum dragging is a dog’s way of trying to relieve the irritation they are feeling. Many owners mistakenly assume that this is a sign of worms, but it is simply an indication that the anal area is very irritated.
You might notice your dog sitting down abruptly and/or quickly looking behind them with an alert or concerned expression on their face.
A swelling may be visible around the anus and we might also detect a fishy smelling, brown discharge being leaked from the anus.
Some dogs will stretch to lick and chew at their back end. While some can reach, others may lick and chew their rump and legs instead. This can lead to fur loss and red skin.
How do you know if your dog needs his anal glands expressed?
Your dog will usually let you know something is amiss by scooting their bum along the ground and stopping abruptly to look quickly at their back end. They may also lick or chew obsessively at their back end.
What happens when a dog’s anal glands are full?
Full anal glands cause discomfort and can quickly become infected, leading to an abscess forming. If not treated on time, the abscess can burst out onto the skin.
You can book your dog into your Vets to have their glands expressed and many dog groomers will also do this for you too.
Getting regular exercise can help prevent problems, so get your dogs booked in for their walks with us!
It's Tick Season again...
It's Tick Season again...
Tick infestations are usually seasonal in the UK and can be seen between March and June, and again from August to November, however there is always a year round risk.
Ticks are blood-sucking parasites which are normally picked up by dogs in long grass or in woodland areas.
Sheep ticks are the most common in the UK - they prefer moorland and woodland, Hedgehog ticks tend to be in parks and urban environments. Ticks are predominantly seen in spring and autumn. However, if it's been a particularly mild winter or wet summer they might be around earlier in the year and active for longer.
When an infected tick hooks on to your pet it can pass on any disease it might be carrying. Ticks don't usually transmit disease for 24 – 48 hours after attachment, so early removal can prevent this happening. Ticks at the larvae stage are harder to spot, but adult ticks are quite obvious - they resemble small, pale grey lumps. People often mistake them for growths. Run your hands through your dog's fur and check it - doing this regularly is key. If you do find a tick remove it as quickly as possible. Ticks are harder to spot in longer-haired dogs than short-haired breeds. Check the armpits, head, ears, around the bottom, and undercarriage.
Resist the temptation to pluck them from your dog as the mouth parts can remain in the skin and produce festering sores.
Never try to burn ticks out or squeeze them - these methods are more likely to injure your dog, and squeezing ticks can release toxins into your dog's body.
A tick removal tool is the safest implement to use to get rid of ticks. (We always carry one in our first aid kit!)
Use preventative measures to prevent your dog from getting ticks in the first instance. Several flea treatments are effective against ticks. Check out our April Blog for more preventative tips.
What are the benefits of giving my dog Salmon oil?
- Better brain function, mental development & memory
- A glossy, healthy looking coat
- No more dry or itchy skin
- Boosted immune system
- Improved cardiovascular & heart health
- Lubricated joints and therefore better mobility
- Bright eyes/better sight
- Healthy weight gain (especially beneficial for puppies)
Just drizzle the recommended dose for your dog on their regular food and mix well.
For Maximum benefits use daily.
Top Fruits for Dogs
Dogs can eat many different kinds of fruit, so long as they’re served as an occasional treat and in moderate amounts. Many dogs enjoy snacking on healthy, fruity treats between meals. Still, you should only let them indulge from time to time to avoid the risk of adverse side effects.
Some of the best fruits to feed dogs;
Apples – Full of vitamin C, calcium, phosphorus, and dietary fiber. They’re also a good source of prebiotics. Apple seeds do contain very, very small amounts of cyanide (not enough to harm your dog), so if you’re worried about that don’t feed the core.
Berries – Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries are all good choices when it comes to fruits for dogs. They’re loaded with vitamin C, phytonutrients, fiber, and most importantly, antioxidants. They help strengthen your dog’s immune system and slow the aging process by fighting free radicals.
Pears – Fiber, copper, vitamin C, vitamin K, all make pears a good option. They are also relatively mild, and most dogs don’t mind the taste, even if they’re picky about other fruits.
Bananas – Bananas are rich in potassium, biotin, vitamins, magnesium, and fiber. The fiber content make them a good choice if your pet has digestive upset. They’re gentle and easy to digest. Magnesium promotes bone growth and can help the body produce protein and absorb vitamins.
Pineapple – Pineapples are a great source of vitamin C and B6, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin, and folate. Make sure that you also remove the tough core. (It has the potential to cause an obstruction.)
Mango – Rich in vitamins A, C, E, and K, B6, folate, riboflavin and choline and minerals like iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, copper, zinc, and selenium. Plus it has antioxidants, carotenoids, and polyphenols. Just be sure to peel it and remove the stone before serving.
Oranges – Oranges, as well as grapefruit, are good for dogs. Many dogs like oranges (although admittedly fewer will go for a segment of grapefruit), and are happy to share, peel off.
Coconut – Another tropical item on the list! Packed inside a coconuts shell are valuable medium-chain triglycerides, which are a great source of energy. It also has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can help with many conditions, including skin allergies, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and arthritis.
Cantaloupe – Canteloupes are an excellent source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, niacin, folate, vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. The seeds are harmless but be sure to remove the outer shell as it can cause digestive issues.
Fruits to avoid;
Grapes are a no-go (and raisins). Stay away from dried fruits, or processed/canned fruit. With dried fruits, the water is removed, and sugars get concentrated, making them really high in sugar. Dried fruits can also contain chemical compounds that are potentially toxic.
Also, be careful with fruits with fruit stones (peaches, cherries, plums, etc.) The flesh is good – but not the stones.
Natural Remedies for Fleas and Ticks
Garlic is a chemical weapon against fleas. In fact, it’s one of my favourite natural remedies for fleas, particularly prevention. Fleas detest the smell of garlic and by feeding it to your pets, they will become a walking flea deterrent.
It is a myth that feeding garlic to your pets will make them sick or kill them.
Garlic contains something called thiosulphate, which, if given in high enough dosage, is a liver toxin. However, garlic only contains trace amounts of thiosulphate and you would have to give your dog a very large dose in order to cause harm.
Instead, garlic can be great for your pets! It’s anti-fungal, anti-parasitic, and a natural antibiotic that doesn’t destroy beneficial bacteria.
When using garlic for your pets, it’s important to remember to use fresh, clove garlic. This is the only way to ensure proper dosage and effectiveness. You can safely give your pet 1/4 clove of garlic per every 10 pounds of body weight. If your dog or cat is below 10 pounds, then cut a 1/4 clove of garlic in half (so 1/8 of a clove). I am talking about a normal piece of garlic – not the elephant garlic variety. No matter how big your pet is, do not give them more than 2 cloves of garlic per day. So if you have a 100 pound dog, still give them only 2 cloves of garlic.
Nematodes are bugs we can all love and appreciate!
One of the most important ways to combat fleas is to kill them before they can reproduce. Use Flea eating nematodes, these microscopic organisms eat fleas, they are easy to use. Just order them from any online garden shop and use a garden sprayer to spray the nematodes on your garden. Spray once each in the Spring, Summer, and Autumn.
3. Garden Care
If your dog has a favorite place to curl up outside or if you garden, spread diatomaceous earth on the ground. It is a non-toxic powder made up of fossilized organisms called diatoms. These little gems help break apart flea eggs and dry them out before they can grow into adult fleas. (Google diatomaceous earth for fleas for stockists)
Gardens can also benefit from potted mint, rosemary, mexican fleabane daisies, geraniums, lavender and lemongrass. These plants repel fleas and ticks, while helping to make your garden an unfavorable habitat for pests.
The Vegetable you need to be feeding your dog!!
Adding broccoli to your pets food is the best way to make their diet better and have an impact on their health. Several studies have shown the sulphophane found in broccoli destroys cancer cells and/or damaged cells in dogs.
No matter how you prepare it, chopped, raw, fermented, boiled, start by adding 1/4 teaspoon per 10lbs of body weight mixed in their food.
Some Healthy Recipes to make for your dogs;
Whilst January is the time for many people to make resolutions and start dieting, exercising more, how many owners look to their dogs health and well-being?
Controlling your dogs weight can be particularly hard when your dog is food motivated. As dogs age they are naturally less active and will start to gain weight if fed the same portions. Obesity can occur at any age in dogs so we need to be regularly monitoring our doglets. Whilst there is a temptation to reward good behaviour with treats and filling that bowl to the brim, try half filling it - you can always top it up if your dog empties it and is still hungry.
Excess fat will not only affect the quality of life for your dog but could potentially shorten their lifespan!! Letting your dog become obese could lose him a year or more.
Heart disease, joint disease and skin diseases are all seen more in our overweight pals. Don't kill your pooch with kindness, giving him an extra tit-bit at dinner time or a treat for good behaviour doesn't really show that you love your dog if it could be affecting his health. Try making some homemade healthy treats (Some recipes coming next month!) and get your fur baby booked in with us for regular exercise to help shed those pounds.
Winter Dog Care
Winter Dog Care
Our Top 10 tops for keeping your dog safe throughout the winter months...
1. WRAP UP ON WALKS
Whilst it might be cosy and warm inside, your dog needs regular walks regardless of the weather. When your are out on walks its important to ensure your four legged friends are wrapped up warm. Put a dog coat on - if you have a fine coated dog, such as a Greyhound or Staffie.
2. CHECK FOR SNOW BETWEEN THEIR TOES
Check your dog's paws and dry them thoroughly after they've been outside. This is particularly important for long haired dogs as they are prone to snow compacting between their toes and turning into ice balls, which can be very painful. If you dog doesn't mind, trimming the long hair between their toes can help prevent this.
3. CHECK FOR SALT & GRIT BETWEEN THEIR TOES
Clean their paws thoroughly at the end of a walk. Salt and grit from roads and pavements can also get lodged between their toes.
4. KEEP THEM WARM & DRY
Dry wet and muddy dogs after walks and make sure they have somewhere cosy to snuggle down that is away from any cold draughts such as a warm bed or blanket on a chair.
5. KEEP THEM ACTIVE INDOORS
Some dogs can be reluctant to go out in the cold. If this is your dog, don't force them out, make sure instead that you provide them with plenty of indoor stimulation, dog toys, snuffle mats, lickimats all keep them occupied while indoors. Interestingly, scent work can be very tiring as it gives them lots of mental stimulation.
6. ADJUST THEIR FOOD IF NECESSARY
If you do find that your dog is less active in the winter then make sure that you adjust the amount of food that you give them to avoid unnecessary weight gain.
7. MAKE SURE THAT THEY HAVE GOOD RECALL
Cold weather often brings reduced visibility in snowy or foggy weather. If you're letting your dog off lead, ensure their recall is good to avoid them getting lost, and , as always ensure their microchip details are up to date with the correct contact info.
8. MAKE THEM VISIBLE
As the nights draw in earlier and the sun rises later, attach a light to your dogs collar, use an LED light up collar or pop them a high-vis coat to ensure that they can be seen when out in reduced visibility.
9. NEVER LEAVE YOUR DOG IN THE CAR UNATTENDED
Just as in the summer months cars can become fatally hot, in the winter temperatures can drop very quickly in cold weather. Always take your dog with you rather than leaving them in the car for any length of time.
10. STAY AWAY FROM FROZEN LAKES AND RIVERS
Keep your dog away from frozen water, be it lakes, rivers or ponds. It;s impossible to tell how secure the surface is. If they're a true water baby, keep them on a lead to avoid the temptation, Frozen water can be fatal, to both dogs and owners if they attempt a rescue.
ENJOY THE FRESHER WEATHER ON YOUR WALKS, BUT DO STAY SAFE.
Dog Car Travel
Transporting your dog without a dog car seat, seat belt, harness or crate, can lead to a fine of up to £2,500 and 9 points on your licence!! 34% of drivers do not do this when out on the road with their furry friend, so you are not alone, but, keeping your dog secure when travelling can negate the risk of them, and you, being injured should the worst happen and you are involved in a collision.
Dogs can travel in the front seat, and 1 in every 10 drivers let their pets sit beside them, but you MUST turn off the passenger side air bag and move the seat as far back as possible. (As well as securing them).
64% of drivers are unaware of these regulations. Driving without your dog being secured can also invalidate your car insurance. So get yourself a dog seat, seat belt, harness or crate and travel safely. (Prices start from as little as £2.99 on Amazon for a dog car seat belt).
Please be aware that if you swap from a collar to a harness whilst out walking your dog/s, you could be breaking the law - and at risk of receiving a £5,000 fine.
By law, your four-legged friend has to wear a collar with an identification tag when you’re out and about in public.
This is particularly important with smaller breeds, as collars tend to put pressure on windpipes and lead to health problems - our advice - use a harness for walking but ensure your dog wears a collar with an id tag just to ensure you aren’t breaking the law, as the Control of Dogs Order 1992 law for Scotland, England and Wales states that a dog must wear a collar with an identity tag on it in public places.
There are some exceptions to this, including working dogs but the rule applies to all pets.
The tag should include your name, and your address - so failing to have any tag, or having a tag without the correct information could land you a hefty fine. Whilst owners are understandably nervous about adding their address with so many dog thefts since the start of the pandemic, it is still a legal requirement. Owners should be aware that their postcode must also be included on their dog’s ID collar or tag, but the law does not obligate you to include your phone number. (We would strongly advise that you do add your phone number so you can be contacted immediately).
Yes Bonfire Night is almost upon us....
....you may have already heard the late night revelers letting off fireworks at 11pm, if you haven't your dog certainly has. Fireworks can be frightening for our pets. Their enhanced senses make the loud bangs, vibrations and flashes very, very, scary. There are some simple steps that the PDSA recommend you can take to prevent your pets becoming scared while they are young, or to help keep older pets safe and calm.
The first step is to spot the signs that they are afraid:
Trembling and shaking, Clinging to owner/s, Excessive barking, Cowering and hiding,
Trying to run away, Spoiling in the house, Pacing and panting, Refusing to eat,
Seeming depressed or withdrawn, Freezing, Yawning and licking lips or Digging.
For young dogs and puppies, its important to get them used to the sound of fireworks as part of their socialisation, so they are less likely to be scared later in life.
Using pre-recorded sounds to help them get used to the loud noises, including fireworks is a great way to prepare them. Start out playing them quietly, rewarding your dog with a yummy treat, a new toy or by playing a game. Gradually build up their tolerance until they remain calm while the sounds are playing loudly.
Secure your home and garden as fearful pets may panic and their instinct is to try and escape when they are scared. Secure any holes in garden fences/ hedges beforehand.
Make sure your pets microchip details are correct and up to date, just in case they do get scared and run away.
Build a den to give your pet a safe, secure place to hide by building them somewhere to take refuge. Simply covering a table with a blanket or tablecloth, putting soft and cosy bedding underneath with their favourite toys and treats a week or so before can help them learn that this is a safe place to go.
Pheromone products can sometimes help relieve stressed pets. Designed to mimic natural animal pheromones, they come in sprays, plug ins, diffusers and collars.
Playing music or TV loud enough to mask the sound of the fireworks can also help keep pets calm.
Ensure your pet isn't left home alone on Bonfire Night, walk them whilst it's still light-before all the bangs begin. Keep doors and windows closed, draw the curtains, comfort them as you would normally. Keep your routine as normal, ensure your tone and mood remain calm, and NEVER punish or shout at your pets, its not their fault they're scared and it can add to their anxiety.
Yes Blueberries are good for your dog!
Believe it or not, these are one of the most beneficial treats that you can ever feed your dog! These little blue gems, quench free radicals and protect against oxidative damage, plus they're full of longevity-promoting biomolecules, meaning they are the best thing you can share with your furry pal. Whether fresh or frozen (great when out of season) blueberries are one of the best anti-aging treats you can offer - straight from the bush, if you're lucky enough like me, to live somewhere where they grow wild, and they are in season now!! Great for use as a training treat (in small numbers).
There are new studies that show blueberries can slow down the aging process in numerous species by repairing DNA damage and modifying genes associated with aging, which promotes significantly longer life spans! (Now who doesn't want that for their best pal???)
Researchers have also found that they reduce the risk of cells becoming cancerous and aid the prevention of cognitive decline in aging dogs.
I'm just off to buy some for me and the dogs!!
(1 blueberry per 2lbs of bodyweight per day.)
We had to write a bit about this amazing chap and all that he has achieved.
If you don't know of him; Pen Farthing is a former British Royal Marines commando who has recently organised a rescue of 173 dogs and cats from Afghanistan.
Whilst serving in Afghan, Farthing and his troops broke up a street dog fight in the town of Nawzad. One of these dogs, later named Nowzad, went on to follow him for the next six months. At the end of his deployment, Farthing sought to bring the dog home to the UK. He then went on to set up Nowzad Dogs, a charity which seeks to reunite servicemen with the dogs and cats who befriended them, and humanely control Kabul's stray animals through a trap–neuter–vaccinate–return programme. The charity also aided animal welfare in Afghanistan, reported as the first animal rescue centre in the country.
Since the recent developments in Afghan, Farthing has confirmed that the dogs and cats rescued from Afghanistan will be going to different shelters across the country, with some going to a shelter in Wales. He is still working to get "terrified" staff members out of the country.
His book One Dog at a time outlining his amazing story can be purchased directly from the charity, or can found in all good book shops.
Whilst this is not something anyone wants their dog to catch, most people don't know a lot about it.
Also known as Contagious Canine Cough (CCC), Kennel Cough can be easily caught by any dog when it socialises. There are only an estimated 1 in 32 dogs vaccinated in the UK against Kennel Cough. Unless your dog goes to Doggy Daycare or stays somewhere for Dog Boarding or in Kennels, where it is a requirement for all dogs, you may not have even known that you can protect against it. Kennel Cough symptoms can last between 1 to 3 weeks but dogs can shed the disease, passing it onto others, for up to 3 months. Dogs develop a hacking cough which can be distressing for both the dog and its owner. Symptoms also include a reduced appetite, low energy and a high temperature. Puppies, older and poorly dogs can go onto develop serious symptoms. A quick visit to the Vets is all it takes to get your pooch protected. Make sure you spread the word, not the disease!!
5 activities that can put your dog at risk:
1.Going to Doggy Daycare, Dog boarding or Kennels
2.Taking your dog into the office
3.Going to the vet
4.Meeting other dogs out on walks
5.Going to a training class