Physical Activities for Dog

Everyone wants their pets to be fit and healthy. As wonderful as dogs can be, they are famous for missing the point. Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. There are many games and exercises that can contribute to the fitness of your pets. These activities will not only make them fit, but will also bring an excitement in both of yours lives.

Contributor: Ronak Jain

Everyone wants their pets to be fit and healthy. As wonderful as dogs can be, they are famous for missing the point. Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. There are many games and exercises that can contribute to the fitness of your pets. These activities will not only make them fit, but will also bring an excitement in both of yours lives.

Walk With The Dog – Instead of walking your dog, have your dog walk you. Go wherever your dog goes. It can be great exercise for you as well. You can also go for runs, which can increase your as well as the dog’s stamina.

Tracking Clues – Not all dogs are tracking breeds, but just about any dog can participate in the sport of tracking, a competitive event for dogs and handlers. A scent trail is laid out hours before competition. Numerous clues are left for the dog to follow through and something as a reward is placed at the end of the trails.

Playing With Other Dogs – The best form of activity is the one where dogs can naturally move their body. Playing with fellow dogs can be one of them. They’ll not only exercise but also enjoy the time.

Teaching Fun Behaviours – Mental exercises are always the best. You can teach your dog exercises like high-fiving or bowing or command by hand. After obedience commands have been taught, cognitive challenges tend to drop off.

Dancing With Your Dog – A dance routine can really cheer you and your dog up. This can energize you and your dog as you both dance away to your favourite tunes.

Indoor Agility – You can set up a makeshift agility course in your house with things like chairs and broom poles (jumps), a mat (for a makeshift pause table), cones or boxes (weave poles), and blankets over the space between the couch and the coffee table (tunnel). Or you can buy an indoor agility set. Either way, it is very useful.

Hide and seek – You can have great fun playing hide and seek with your dog. Put your dog in stay until you can hide and then call him to find you. It can also enhance the dog’s mental abilities.

Stairs – One of the most effective exercise for your dog indoors. Make it go up and down the stairs to burn those extra calories.

Mr n Mrs Pet is a curated marketplace connecting breeders, pet service providers and pet lovers. We have carefully curated high quality breeders and verified and qualified service providers to ensure that pet lovers get healthy pet they desire with all the necessary services to manage their pets. We are committed in making pet care safe, affordable and easy for every pet parent, so that they can enjoy the unconditional love of their pets. Visit – https://mrnmrspet.com

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Betta Fish

Contributor: Mike Magnum

Keeping and caring for a betta is not difficult. It just takes a little time on your part to research them before you buy them to make sure that you can meet their needs. The betta is a hardy little freshwater fish species that gets to around 2.5 inches in size when fully grown and sports some of the most remarkable colors. Many people keep them in small unfiltered bowls with no heater and no filtration. Seeing how they are kept in stores awaiting sale in those tiny little cups doesn’t help matters either. This conveys the message to the new hobbyist that they can keep them in similar conditions which is quite wrong. Keeping the betta in a small bowl with no filter and no heater will shorten their lifespan and make them lethargic and less interesting to keep.

So, what all is needed to keep a betta correctly? There are all sorts of setups you could have but one that would provide basic living conditions would be something like the following: A 10 gallon or larger aquarium with a hang on power filter, a heater and a simple hood plugged into a light timer to give them a light cycle. A power head really isn’t needed since they don’t really need all the much current. The power filter in a 10 gallon tank should be sufficient. A heater will help keep the temperature stable. Fluctuating temperatures can be very stressful for your fish and inverts. The betta is a tropical fish so a temperature in the 70’s F should be sufficient. I like to keep my betta tanks around 78F. The power filter will be the place where the beneficial bacteria accumulates and will help cycle the tank. Check FishLore for information on the aquarium nitrogen cycle which is an important cycle that convert ammonia (fish poo, decomposing waste, etc) into nitrite then nitrates. This is a very important cycle and needs to be understood by anyone keeping fish.

The next thing you’ll want to do is provide your betta a high quality diet. There are now foods on the market made especially for bettas. Pick some up and feed your fish several small feedings throughout the day. Don’t overfeed. Supplement their diet with live or thawed brine shrimp from time to time.

Regular partial water changes are another important aspect when keeping the betta. Aim for smaller more frequent partial water changes over less frequent large water changes. Water changes will do wonders for your fish and help make your tank look much cleaner and nicer overall. The partial water change should be one of the first things you turn to when your fish are acting “off”.

Also remember that you can’t keep more than one betta to a tank. They will fight, sometimes to the death with each other.

If you’re having a problem with your betta, FishLore has a very active forum with helpful members than can help sort out any issues you have with your fish or aquarium.

Author Bio
Mike is an editor at FishLore. Designed for beginners, FishLore provides tropical fish information, how-to guides, articles, fish profiles, FAQs, forums and more!

Article Source: http://www.ArticleGeek.com

No Bad Dogs

Many dogs have inadvertently learned incorrect behaviour from their owners and require to be educated in how to behave correctly. It would be very unusual for a dog to be simply “bad” or “untrainable”, in the vast majority of cases the dog has simply learned bad behaviour – or not learned “good” behaviour!

Contributor: Jane Stewart

Many dogs have inadvertently learned incorrect behaviour from their owners and require to be educated in how to behave correctly. It would be very unusual for a dog to be simply “bad” or “untrainable”, in the vast majority of cases the dog has simply learned bad behaviour – or not learned “good” behaviour!

The first step is to remain calm and in control, shouting, smacking and screaming are not as effective as consistent positive training (i.e. rewarding the dog for good behaviour – with treats initially and then just with attention, cuddles etc – and ignoring them when they behave inappropriately).

Secondly make sure the dog realises that you are the “pack leader” and not the other way around, many owners try to spoil their dogs in the vain hope of an easy life – this is far from the case, once your dog realises that it can get the attention/treats/rewards it desires by repeating patterns of (bad) behaviour, essentially the dog will be training you! This is why many people have barking problems with their dogs. Most dogs dont realise whether barking is a good thing or a bad thing. Sometimes when the dog barks, it is ignored. Other times, the dog is praised (warding off possible intruders). And yet other times, the dog is shouted at (owner has a headache/is tired/is on the telephone etc). People are consistently inconsistent, especially when it comes to their pets! 

When it comes to housetraining, remember that your dog is an instinctively clean animal. If the dog can avoid it, it would rather not soil itself or her usual eating and sleeping area. All the dog needs is positive encouragement when it eliminates in correct places.

A popular, modern method for dog training and obedience is “Clicker training”, this is a slang term used to describe a way of training dogs that has become increasingly popular in the last decade due to its gentle and effective methods. The scientific term for it is operant conditioning. Simply put simply put, an dog tends to repeat an action that has a positive consequence and tends not to repeat one that has a negative consequence. The problem with other types of conditioning is that it is difficult to reinforce good behaviour at a distance, the clicker allows you to mark with great precision the good behaviour for which the dog is being reinforced, even if it the dog is some distance from you.

The clicker is a simple cheap and effective device, basically it’s just a metal strip encased in a plastic box that when pressed makes a unique sharp clicking noise that the dog can distinguish easily from background noises. If you are having any problems training your dog this should be the first product on your shopping list.

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Yes, Dogs Get Emotionally Attached to You

Dogs are said to be man’s best friend. And undoubtedly, they are! They are always there when you need them and never let you feel alone. They can really lighten up someone’s mood. Their love is endless. The world has witnessed many stories which tell us how a dog is incomplete with its parent.

Contributor: Ronak Jain

Dogs are said to be man’s best friend. And undoubtedly, they are! They are always there when you need them and never let you feel alone. They can really lighten up someone’s mood. Their love is endless. The world has witnessed many stories which tell us how a dog is incomplete with its parent.

A man in New Jersey suffering from clinical depression, read about the beneficial presence of dogs and brought a golden retriever home. He suddenly started feeling responsible and felt this strong need to live.

This is just one example. Dogs have been very faithful to men since ages.

It is seen that many times pet owners too develop a relationship with their pet, similar to that of a parent and child. This bond is called “secure base effect”.

Sometimes dogs are very cautious and careful in the beginning but they can sometimes be goofy and overdo it. But they will be fine once they get comfortable around you.

For most dogs, the attachment they feel towards their owner is fundamental to their well-being. It is studied that while dogs enjoy each other’s company, human attention is what they crave. You may not realize when your dog gets too much attached to you, and that attachment becomes intense to an extent that if you leave your dog for even a day or two, they stop behaving normal. They stop playing. They stop eating. All they need that time is you.

Puppies can sometimes get along with you immediately, if you spend time with them and treat them well. It is very natural for a dog to bond with its owner and if both of them trust each other, then the process happens very quickly. And from there start a happy love story as with time that puppy becomes an irreplaceable part of your life.

Sometimes when dogs are in stress due to some reason they can become very clingy. Older dogs can also show clinginess and over attachment because of deteriorating senses. That is the time when you need to understand them well and take proper care of them. They need you that time, and you should be there with them.

With all the love dogs give us, we should give them the same love in return. We should give them enough time, go on walks with them and play with them. Give them hugs and talk to them. It’s a beautiful world with a dog as a pet. Cherish that.

Mr n Mrs Pet is a curated marketplace connecting breeders, pet service providers and pet lovers. We have carefully curated high quality breeders and verified and qualified service providers to ensure that pet lovers get healthy pet they desire with all the necessary services to manage their pets. We are committed in making pet care safe, affordable and easy for every pet parent, so that they can enjoy the unconditional love of their pets. Visit – https://mrnmrspet.com

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Teaching Your Dog to be Independent

Some dogs are naturally more confident and independent that others from birth. In every litter there are puppies that are more outgoing and independent. Someone is always going to be the leader. But even if you have a puppy or dog that is not the leader of the pack you can still do a lot to help your dog feel confident and independent.

Contributor: Wayne Booth

There’s nothing happier than a happy dog. Most people would agree that in order to be happy a dog needs to feel confident and independent. Yet it’s also true that there are many dogs that, for one reason or another, cling to their owners. They may be anxious or fearful at times. You can teach your dog to be independent but it does take some effort on your part. Here are some suggestions.

First of all, some dogs are naturally more confident and independent that others from birth. In every litter there are puppies that are more outgoing and independent. Someone is always going to be the leader. But even if you have a puppy or dog that is not the leader of the pack you can still do a lot to help your dog feel confident and independent.

Once you bring home a puppy most people know that they should work on their puppy’s socialization. This means that they should begin taking their puppy out so he or she can see new things and meet friendly people. Seeing new things and meeting friendly people help build your puppy’s confidence. They show your puppy that he has nothing to fear from new things. They teach him that he should enjoy meeting people.

However, even if you work on this aspect of socialization with your puppy there’s another part of your puppy’s life that you need to consider. If you want your puppy to be independent then you need to encourage him to be independent at home, too. This is often harder than people realize. For instance, your puppy may be scared when something new and unexpected happens. Does your puppy hide when someone comes to the door or when people visit? Is he scared of loud noises or other things in the house? If so, then your own reaction to your puppy can determine whether he overcomes these fears and becomes independent and confident or whether he becomes anxious and clingy for the rest of his life.

If your puppy is frightened of things then you should take a calm and relaxed attitude toward them yourself. Show your puppy that there’s nothing to be afraid of. When strangers visit, show your puppy that they are welcome and encourage him to meet them. When there are loud noises that scare your puppy, try laughing and joking about them. If your puppy is scared of something in your yard, encourage him to investigate. Lead the way and show him that there’s nothing to worry about. Give him a pat and make a fuss about him when he overcomes his fears.

If you are bringing home an older dog then it’s possible that your dog may also need to become more independent, especially if he’s had any bad experiences in the past. Don’t force him to do things that really scare him, but do encourage him to look at new things and to meet people. If he’s clingy then give him lots of praise and encouragement when he shows signs of investigating things on his own. Do things that help him build his confidence. Try to make these things fun for your dog. As you work on building your dog’s confidence and helping him become more independent, things will become easier for your dog. He’ll start to enjoy things that used to give him trouble.

One of the best ways of teaching your puppy or dog to be independent is to start training him. Obedience training is a great way to build your dog’s confidence and help him become more independent. It encourages him to think and act and your dog will get lots of positive reinforcement in the process. You can also take part in training for agility and other dog sports that encourage your dog to be independent.

Depending on your puppy or dog, teaching your dog to be more independent can be easy or difficult, but it can be done. Take your cues from your dog. Don’t push too hard but don’t give up either. Remember that if your puppy or dog is scared and you offer too much comfort, you are simply reinforcing your dog’s belief that there is a reason to be scared. If you do this, then your dog will never become independent. Encourage your dog to be confident and independent and he will be a much happier dog in the long run.

Wayne Booth is owner of Canine Behavior Specialists in Nashville, TN where he helps people train and solve problems of all types with their dogs. Wayne has also been teaching people how to become Professional Dog Trainers since 1990 and he is the Training Director of Canine Behavior Specialists Network. Please visit the websites at http://www.CanineBehaviorSpecialists.com or the trainer school at http://www.K9-university.com

What is your dog’s biggest behavioral problem?

The Budgie: A Sensitive Soul

By Sue Ellam

My mother passed away in February and I took on responsibility for her budgerigar Sky. He is a lovely little bird – very noisy and feisty – isn’t hand tamed and doesn’t like to be touched. Heaven help you if you try! He is approximately 5 years old – give or take.

Mum used to bring Sky with her when she visited, so I was aware of how to look after him, but other than that I really didn’t have a clue about budgies. I remember one we had as a family pet when I was a teenager and that was about it.

Sky and I got into a routine for the first 5 months – I opened his cage door every morning but he never left it. He was happy to flap his wings inside his cage which is large enough to do so with room to spare.

Then came the day about a month ago when he ventured out and the problems started. On the few times that he started to fly around he flew into the walls and had a nasty fall when he misjudged a shelf – this had never happened to him before and he went into shock.

This noisy, feisty little bird became quiet – he couldn’t hold onto his perch properly and ended up walking around on the bottom of his cage – it was truly heart breaking to watch. He would jump at the slightest movement or unexpected sound and fly around in a panic. I knew that there was something seriously wrong when he allowed me to hold him in my hand on 3 separate occasions when I had to rescue him from falling off his perch.

I am fortunate to be friends with some animal healers and communicators and one of them instructed me on giving him Rescue Remedy and that helped. She didn’t see a serious illness with him, just a bit sore from his collisions, and she did some distant healing on him and he perked up quite a bit, but was still far from back to his normal self. He was much calmer though and didn’t go into panics, so I decided to get him checked out by the vet as well.

Sky was far from happy at being caught and put into a very pretty tissue box and carted along to the vet, a very pleasant man who specialises in small animals. He examined him and found him to be underweight, but with no external damage, good eye sight and no problem with his claws. However, he did suspect that he might have liver and/or kidney problems and told me that budgies often only lived between 5 to 7 years and that 15 years (which is what I had read) was the exception rather than the rule. He gave me some medicine and made an appointment for the following week, but I could tell by his demeanour that he didn’t expect Sky to survive.

I was absolutely heartbroken – this little bird had crept into my heart and was also a connection to Mum and I couldn’t bear the thought of losing him so soon.

Synchronicity is a big part of my life and I was given further information which would be of great help and another piece in the puzzle. I was again told that there was nothing physically wrong with him, but that he was grieving, deeply depressed and didn’t see the point of living. It was suggested that I put a photo of my Mum in his cage with him and to add a bit of curcumin to his food/drink to help build him up.

I immediately printed out a photo of Mum and put it in his cage and I couldn’t believe the change in him – if someone had told me, I would have had a hard time believing it. He immediately started to eat and drink as if he was making up for lost time. His food was near Mum’s photo and he would stay close to it while he was eating. One night I peeped in on him and he was fast asleep right next to her. He also found the strength to get back onto his perch again and started moving round his cage – it was truly miraculous. I also put a piece of Rose Quartz into his cage and he spent quite a bit of time close to that too.

He was obviously still stressed though, so I cancelled a further visit to the vet and decided to let nature take its course. With the help of my friends I had done everything I could and it was now up to Sky to decide whether he wanted to stay or not.

It has been an emotional month watching this little bird going through his trauma, and it has been an ongoing healing. Just last week he went through 3 days of literally sitting on his perch virtually motionless, just eating a little now and then, but showing no interest in anything. I felt helpless and wondered if he was craving companionship – though he had always been a solitary bird.

However, just 3 days ago he started to make some noise and showed some interest in his surroundings. The following day he started to play again and was climbing everywhere and today he hasn’t stopped chatting. It does my heart good to hear him.

Once I came out of my emotional state it occurred to me that the reason he was flying into the walls might be because I have no pictures on those particular walls, so he can’t judge where they are – I will rectify that before he is ready to venture out of the security and safety of his cage. Fingers crossed!!

Conclusion

This whole situation confirmed to me the necessity of an holistic approach to healing. There were a number of people involved in Sky’s healing and they were all necessary parts of it.

The animal healers/communicators helped me to help him with his shock and enabled me to feel confident to take him to the vet without giving him any additional stress. They also prompted me to deal with his grief about losing my Mum and to give him the necessary care in that direction.

The vet put my mind at rest as to his physical condition and that he hadn’t injured himself whilst flying.

I truly don’t believe that Sky would be alive today if I hadn’t put the photo of my Mum into his cage with him. It might sound far-fetched, but you might just believe me if you had seen the virtually instant change in him.

It has made me wonder how many animals have died or been put down due to emotional and mental problems, rather than physical. This is something that I didn’t even consider just five weeks ago. I think most of us are aware of dogs and larger animals pining, but how many of us – myself included – would have considered that a little bird like a budgie would go through a similar process?

I still spray him with Rescue Remedy and give it to him to drink, and add curcumin to his grated carrot. I will continue with that for a while longer, until I feel it’s not necessary any more.

I have had a ‘thrown in the deep end’ education this past month – one that I will never forget and I hope that my story will resonate with some of you that read it.

In the meantime, I am very happy that my feisty, noisy little friend is still around and sincerely hope that he will be for many years to come.

Do you have a story about a pet which relates to my experience?

Sue is the Founder of Soulfully Connecting. The idea behind Soulfully Connecting is to demonstrate that there are other ways of living which can heal the earth, the animal kingdom and ourselves. She is passionate about people having freedom of choice, which is only possible when they know about all the options.

Source: EZine

First Aid for Hot Spots in Dogs

Canine hot spots are red, inflamed skin lesions also known as pyotraumatic dermatitis or acute moist dermatitis. These names accurately describe the inflammatory skin lesions exacerbated by scratching that appear quickly, ooze, and may contain pus. Hot spots can be found anywhere on a dog’s body, but the most common sites are head, legs, and hips. These painful, smelly sores may be very obvious or may be hidden beneath matted fur.

By Ryan Llera, BSc, DVM; Lynn Buzhardt, DVM

What is a hot spot?

Canine hot spots are red, inflamed skin lesions also known as pyotraumatic dermatitis or acute moist dermatitis. These names accurately describe the inflammatory skin lesions exacerbated by scratching that appear quickly, ooze, and may contain pus. Hot spots can be found anywhere on a dog’s body, but the most common sites are head, legs, and hips. These painful, smelly sores may be very obvious or may be hidden beneath matted fur.

What causes a hot spot?

Hot spots are usually caused by self-trauma when a dog scratches an itchy spot so vigorously that he creates an open wound. Dogs scratch for many reasons but regardless of the cause, hot spots are bothersome. When a dog licks the sore spot, he irritates superficial nerve endings in the skin which stimulates more itching followed by more licking, biting, and scratching. This lick-itch-lick cycle is the basis for the self-trauma that causes hot spots. Hot spots can dramatically increase in size in a very short period of time. Pet owners may go to work after noticing a pin-point area of redness and come home at the end of the day to find a raw lesion the size of a pancake.

How are hot spots treated?

The goal in treating a hot spot is to stop the trauma and prevent the development of a deep skin infection, so the first step in treating hot spots is to stop the self-mutilation. But, how do you stop a dog from licking, biting, and scratching? Some options include:

  • an Elizabethan collar (also known as an E-collar or cone) that stops the dog from chewing at the hot spot.
  • covering the hot spot with a sock or bandage to act as a barrier.
  • topical or oral steroids (prednisone is most commonly used) and antihistamines (diphenhydramine – brand name Benadryl®, cetirizine – brand names Reactine®, Zyrtec®) to reduce the itching. Consult your veterinarian before using any medications intended for humans as they are often toxic to dogs

Often, it takes a combination of all options to stop the trauma.

In the meantime, the underlying cause of the hot spot must be addressed.

  • If the hot spot formed as a result of impacted anal glands, they will need to be expressed.
  • If the cause is flea allergy, a flea control protocol beginning with a fast acting adulticide and continuing with a monthly product (Frontline® Plus, Advantage® or Advantix®, Revolution®, Nexgard®, Simparica®, Bravecto®) to control the entire flea life cycle will be needed.
  • If arthritis is the culprit, your veterinarian may prescribe non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as meloxicam, carprofen, or deracoxib or other pain medications (gabapentin is a common choice).
  • For inhalant or food allergies, your veterinarian can help you to begin avoidance or de-sensitization therapy and recommend a hypoallergenic food.
  • For ear infections, the underlying yeast or bacteria will be treated.
  • If boredom or behavioral issues are the reason the dog traumatizes himself, training and behavior modification, additional exercise and enrichment, and/or medications, such as antidepressants (fluoxetine, clomipramine, amitriptyline) may be the solution.
  • If poor grooming is the cause, seek a professional that knows how to handle a pair of clippers.

Clipping the hair away from the hot spot and the surrounding area is crucial to a successful treatment plan. The hot spot will heal more quickly if the hair is removed so that the lesion can dry properly. Grooming may be painful so the dog may need to be sedated.

“The hot spot will heal more quickly if the hair is removed so that the lesion can dry properly.”

After clipping, the lesion should be disinfected with a chlorhexidine solution that kills bacteria. Topical antibiotics, desiccating sprays, and soothing reagents will be more effective when applied to a clipped, clean skin surface. Oral antibiotics and steroids/antihistamines may also be in order for serious hot spots.

How can hot spots be prevented?

Continued monitoring and treatment of the underlying cause should prevent future hot spots. Some dogs also benefit from seasonal grooming, as well as regular brushing and bathing.

Source: https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/first-aid-for-hot-spots-in-dogs

Dog Walking Etiquette

Each dog and dog breed is different. Know how far your pooch can go. Choose the appropriate weather and terrain to keep both you and your dog comfortable. If you are training or conditioning your dog, make sure you do your research or consult an expert to provide only the best. Studying your pet’s behavior can help determine what type of environment is best.

Contributor: Rose May, Contributor

There is no guidebook or specific rules about how you should walk your dog. But similarly to how you should behave in a public setting, there is a dog walking etiquette. So here is a couple of things you should and/or shouldn’t do while taking your companion.

Control your pet. 
There are different levels of control you can exercise on your pet. While walking you should not let you dog walk-up to random people unless they say it is okay to do so. Some people are allergic and other afraid of dogs. Controlling your dog also means that it does not walk-up to other dogs. Some dogs do not tolerate stranger dogs, or are just afraid and intimated which could result in aggressive behavior. To avoid losing control on your pooch, keep him or her on a short leash especially in crowded environments. A longer lead may be used for more remote walking areas such as trails or parks. Always, keep your dog on the leash unless at the park or in a fenced area. You never know what or who might come out from behind the next bush. This is a safety precaution. Prevent your dog from barking too much. It is relatively okay once or twice but constant barking is a noise nuisance to the neighborhood.

Pick-up after your dog! 
This may seem like the most obvious one out there, but there are way too many dog owners that do not pick-up after their dog goes to the bathroom. Be courteous to other owners and pets. No one wants to see, smell or step into what your pooch has left behind. A reason why there are only a limited number of beaches that allow dogs, is people not picking-up. Go out prepared and always carry bags with you to pick up after your pet. This allows for a clean environment at all times.

Know the limits of your dog. 
Each dog and dog breed is different. Know how far your pooch can go. Choose the appropriate weather and terrain to keep both you and your dog comfortable. If you are training or conditioning your dog, make sure you do your research or consult an expert to provide only the best. Studying your pet’s behavior can help determine what type of environment is best.

There are three main dog walking etiquettes out there. Apply control over your pet when outside. Pick-up after your dog if he or she leaves a mess. Finally, make sure you know how far your dog can go. Overall, walking your dog should be a fun, relaxing, and enjoyable experience for both pet and owner.

Looking for more tips on how to walk and care for your dog? Visit our site to read and find out how you can be the best pet owner you can be: https://www5.cob.ilstu.edu/lpaucot/

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Helpful Advice for Caring for Senior Cats

Sooner or later, your beloved cat will start to get old and experience physical changes. This typically occurs between the ages of seven and ten. However, some are fortunate enough to stave off major changes until approximately 12 years old. Whenever the time finally comes though, you will need to make a few changes in how you care for your pet. Keep reading for useful advice on caring for senior cats.

By D. Swain

Sooner or later, your beloved cat will start to get old and experience physical changes. This typically occurs between the ages of seven and ten. However, some are fortunate enough to stave off major changes until approximately 12 years old. Whenever the time finally comes though, you will need to make a few changes in how you care for your pet. Keep reading for useful advice on caring for senior cats.

Most owners take their cats to the vet for an annual exam. Older cats need to be seen by the vet more often than their younger counterparts since the risk of problems has increased. It’s best to schedule a wellness exam every six months.

You will also need to change what you feed your senior cat somewhat. Seniors who become less active but are still fed the same amount of calories will more than likely become overweight. Obesity is particularly a problem for seniors, so a veterinarian-approved diet would definitely be in order.

When caring for senior cats, always ensure that they always have access to fresh drinking water. Dehydration more easily sets in as cats advance in age. Their organs won’t respond very well to chronic dehydration either. The kidneys usually give seniors the most problem, and frequent dehydration certainly won’t do these vital organs any good.

Just like with humans, arthritis becomes a problem for older cats. Once arthritis sets in, your cat won’t be as physically active as he used to be. Don’t be surprised if he stops climbing the stairs or hopping up onto the windowsill. Arthritic cats may even have problems getting into their litter boxes. If you notice yours has an issue with this, you can accommodate him by getting a shorter box or even putting a set of stairs beside it.

Dental care is important for cats of all ages. For older cats, it becomes increasingly important. The risk of developing dental disease only increases with age. This disease can cause enough pain to keep your cat from eating.

Your cat may also lose the energy to keep himself groomed properly. You don’t want him to develop a dry or excessively dirty coat. Matting can also become a problem if you have a long-haired breed. You can help your senior cat out by brushing him yourself on a daily basis, or at least a few times each week.

The changes that occur in your senior cat aren’t just physical. He may also display mental issues much like elderly humans. He may wander around occasionally or even appear disoriented. Some cats become much more vocal and meow too much for their owner’s liking. When caring for senior cats, also keep in mind they may not respond well to changes. Try to keep everything in the household the same as they do best with familiar routines.

There are quite a few diseases that are common in older cats. Hypertension, kidney issues, hyperthyroidism, and diabetes mellitus are among some of the most common. Different types of cancer are also more prevalent for aged cats.

With the increase in risk of these diseases, it’s important to monitor your cat closely for changes. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, you may want to let a vet give his opinion of it. Examinations conducted twice a year will hopefully catch any diseases early on, which would hopefully make it easier to deal with.

There are many different potential problems that owners may have to deal with. It is best that you learn whatever you can about common feline diseases so you can spot problems ASAP. So, stop by common-cat-diseases.com today to learn about these potential health concerns. Make sure you check out the array of articles on topics such as hair loss in cats.

Source: EZine

Editor Note: Remember to feed your cat according to it’s age. Here’s one of the trusted cat foods for aging felines. Victoria.

Puppy Training Tips: Stop Your Puppy from Chewing

While chewing is a natural process for teething puppies, they need objects of their own to chew on so they do not mistake their owner’s shoes, the legs of furniture, and other objects for chew toys. Heavy nylon ropes tied in a knot and squeaky toys are good for small dogs. Rawhide chews are not recommended any more because pieces can unravel and pose a choking hazard for some dogs.

By Andy Machin

While chewing is a natural process for teething puppies, they need objects of their own to chew on so they do not mistake their owner’s shoes, the legs of furniture, and other objects for chew toysHeavy nylon ropes tied in a knot and squeaky toys are good for small dogs. Rawhide chews are not recommended any more because pieces can unravel and pose a choking hazard for some dogs.

During this phase of your puppy or dog’s life, they should be supervised as much as possible and corrected when they chew on something other than “their” toys. Dogs, like people, need their own toys, blankets, and bedding to feel secure. Toys can be shared of course, when the dog is ready. But it is vital that you establish early on what is “theirs” and what is “yours” to avoid trouble in the future.

For the first few weeks after bringing your new dog home, he will need to become acclimated to his surroundings. Whether you choose to crate train or not, keep the puppy in a small confined area at night and when you cannot supervise him or her. You can use a small plastic baby gate to close off an area of the kitchen during the day to keep the puppy safe and out of trouble while you’re gone.

Best Choices for Chew Toys:

  • Nylon rope toys
  • Soft rubber bones
  • Flavored chew “sticks”
  • Hard plastic chew “rings”

Some Do’s and Don’ts

Do:

  • Offer your puppy a variety of chew toys and let them pick the ones they prefer.
  • Supervise them as much as possible in the first few weeks to train them not to chew your things. Puppies will also chew out of boredom or anxiety so try to keep them engaged whenever possible
  • Praise them when they play with or chew on their toys
  • Keep electrical cords unplugged and put away

Don’t:

  • Choose toys that resemble kid’s toys, especially if you have children in the house.
  • Give them any type of rawhide chews because they can choke dogs or create a blockage in the intestines.

This chewing phase should end at around eight months or so. If you have an older dog that chews just follow the same steps above. You can enlarge their play area as they gain more trust, but keep things like shoes and personal items off the floor.

If you come home to find that they have chewed up your favorite shoes, resist scolding them for their bad behavior, and offer them one of their toys instead. A stern look of displeasure followed by a firm “no” goes a long way to helping them learn what is acceptable. You may need to repeat this several times until they “get it” that this is theirs and that is not.

How quickly they learn what is acceptable to chew and what is not depends entirely upon your training and your dog’s personality. Most dogs will stop inappropriate chewing with instruction and correction within a few weeks.

I hope you have found this of use should you have, or be thinking about, getting a puppy. Separation anxiety is something to be aware of also. Here’s some useful information on dealing with dog separation anxiety which you may like to check out.

Source: EZine

Editor Comments: Many of my friends who train dogs recommend bitter sprays like this one. It helps protect your furniture. Beth M.