May 2014 - LUV My dogs

LUV My dogs

Everything about your dog!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

What Dog Breeds Have Blue Eyes?

What Dog Breeds Have Blue Eyes?
  Genetically, there are four ways in which a dog can have blue eyes. Three of these are linked with pigment loss in the coat.
  The most common way is as a side effect of the merle gene. Merle dilutes random parts of the pigment, including the eyes and nose. This sort of dilution causes blue colour in the iris. Because of the random pigment loss, often merle dogs have "butterfly" noses and blue, wall or split eyes. Wall eyes are when a dog has one blue eye and one brown or amber eye, and a split eye has some blue in it and the rest is brown or amber. Split eyes vary from mostly blue to mostly brown or amber. 
  The more dilution there is in the coat of a merle , the more likely they are to have blue eyes or a butterfly nose. A heavily merled dog  is unlikely to have either of these traits. Double  merles are highly likely to have blue eyes and a completely or almost completely pink nose because of the combination of merle dilution and large amounts of white around the face .
  The second way in which blue eyes can occur is when a dog has large amounts of white around its eyes. White areas on the coat are where the cells are unable to produce any pigment, so if these areas spread to the face then there may be pigment loss in the eyes and on the nose, making the nose pink and the eyes blue. This only tends to occur on very high-white dogs with the extreme spotting pattern, such as white Boxers, and even then is fairly unusual.
  The third way is when a dog is affected by the C series. The C series is albino. There are no confirmed cases of true albinism in dogs, however "white" Dobermanns have a very light coat, blue eyes and a fully pink nose, and this is thought to be a form of albinism.
  Lastly, blue eyes can be inherited as a completely separate gene, unaffected by coat colour. This gene is, however, rare. It is rumoured to occur occasionally in the Border Collie, but mainly it's seen in the Siberian Husky. Huskies can have one or both blue eyes, regardless of their main coat colour, ranging in shade from almost white to sky blue. This is particularly striking when seen on black dogs.
  
Therefore, any breed of dog can be born with blue eyes in spite of its breed and coat color. Even if the puppy's parents do not have blue eyes, a puppy can have it. Of course, this is a very rare case.
  Let's talk more about those dogs that mostly may have blue eyes regardless of the color of their coat.


Siberian Husky. Sledge dog breed is considered one of the oldest dog breeds. These dogs can be several colors, from black to white. Usually white are muzzle and belly. Eyes are blue, brown, amber color. The dogs may have different eyes - for example one blue and one brown. At present, very popular with dogs Sky-blue eyes. This is a very strong dogs that can survive in extreme cold. In terms of the character of these dogs can distinguish three features - a energetic, playful and friendly dog. These dogs love human company and do not like to be alone. They are not suitable for protection. Huskies rarely bark, but sometimes screaming just for fun. For these dogs require strenuous physical exercise, about 80-100 minutes. However, these dogs are prone to escape, so better to let go of their fenced area.



Australian Shepherd. This breed name may be misleading, because these dogs are descended not from Australia as it may seem, but they are from United States. In ancient times, these dogs are cared for very large flocks of sheep. It is a medium-sized dogs. Their fur can be black, blue marble, red marble, brown tri-color, black and white. Their coat is with spots and star on the head. Australian Shepherd eyes are amber and brown, blue and azure. One of the finest Australian Shepherd properties are big desire to please their owners, so these dogs are fast learners and great friends. These dogs are good guard dogs. They are wary of strangers, but not fearful. They are noisy - lots of bark and howl. This breed is affectionate and playful, but without sacrificing the basic working instinct. They need a big physical exercise, about 80-100 minutes. They are not enough for walking, but be free and jogging.


Dalmatians
  Blue-eyed Dalmatians are thought to have a greater incidence of deafness than brown-eyed Dalmatians, although a mechanism of association between the two characteristics has yet to be conclusively established. Some kennel clubs discourage the use of blue-eyed dogs in breeding programs.





  Some people think that the blue eyes come from a Husky ancestor, but that is not true. The blue eye color always appears in the Border collie. Border Collies with 2 eye colors was once considered useful, or desirable for working Border Collies. Blue eyes are often called glass eyes, or watch eyes.If a Border collie has a white head and blue eyes, it would very likely become deaf.




Shetland Sheepdogs
  Note that many of these dogs are blue eyed because of the dominant merle coat colour gene, which may be connected to deafness. The blue-eyed factor in Siberians is NOT connected with deafness, unlike some of the other breeds in which blue eyes may occur. Deaf Siberians are very, very rare. The Merle gene is actually a semi-lethal dominant: dogs with one dose of Merle show the effects of the gene - scattered patches of missing pigment - including on the iris of the eye. They will also show a structural defect of the iris called 'iris coloboma'. Dogs with two doses of the merle gene are frequently deaf and seem to have otherwise reduced vigor. 
  It is important to add that the blue eye colouring is a recessive gene existing in almost all breeds. In other words, any dog can have blue eyes regardless of its breed and coat colour. A puppy can be born with blue eyes even though its parents do not have it. This is a rare instance though. Moreover, in some breeds blue eyes are considered a disqualifying fault .
  Some dog breeds such as Weimaraners have blue eyes as puppies. As they grow up, the eye colour change.
 
However, blue eye coloring is a recessive gene in most breeds. Even if the breed is not known for it, and the parents do not have it, a puppy can still be produces with one or both eyes blue. This means that ANY breed can throw a blue eyed pup in a very rare instance. Health concerns associated with blue eyed dogs are cateracts and deafness, so be sure you get your puppy from a reputable breeder.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Are Human Pain Meds Safe for Dogs?

Are Human Pain Meds Safe for Dogs?
  As dog owners, naturally, when our pets appear to be suffering, we want to do anything and everything in our power to help. In the case of aspirin and ibuprofen, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (or NSAIDs) for humans may be easily attainable and ready to hand, but they are almost universally toxic to dogs. There are veterinarian-approved and prescribed NSAIDs specifically formulated for dogs - always consult with a veterinary health care professional before attempting to treat your dog at home. 
  
Analgesics are drugs used to relieve pain. There are many classes of painkillers. Demerol, morphine, codeine, and other narcotics are subject to federal regulation and cannot be purchased without a prescription.
  Buffered or enteric-coated aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) is an over-the-counter analgesic that is reasonably safe for a short time for home veterinary care in the recommended dosage for dogs. Buffered or enteric-coated aspirin is much safer than regular aspirin because it is less likely to cause stomach and duodenal ulcers.
  
Is Aspirin Effective?
Aspirin is one of the most common medicines used for relieving pain in dogs. However, enteric coated aspirin is safer than the usual aspirin. Aspirin can be given to dogs in case of a musculoskeletal injury, bleeding or clotting. Dosage of aspirin clearly depends on the body weight of the dog. 5 to 10 mg of aspirin per pound is sufficient. Repeat the dose after every 12 hours. However, it should not be used if the dog is pregnant.


Can you give a dog ibuprofen?
  When it comes to ibuprofen for dogs, all of the same terms and conditions for over-the-counter NSAIDs like aspirin apply. While buffered aspirin and buffered baby aspirin may be given to dogs - only with great care, and preferably after a veterinary consultation - ibuprofen has an even narrower margin of safety. In point of fact, ibuprofen for dogs is even worse and more dangerous than aspirin, and should be avoided at all costs. The same issues caused by aspirin can be caused by ibuprofen, including stomach ulcers and kidney failure. If a possible side effect of a medication is death, it's probably not worth the risk when there are canine-specific NSAIDs that your vet can prescribe.

Symptoms of accidental aspirin or ibuprofen ingestion
  What if the circumstances are different? What if you didn't give aspirin or ibuprofen to your dog, but have come home to find your bottle of Motrin or Advil open on the floor? How do you spot accidental ingestion of these NSAIDs? Since the primary ill-effects dogs suffer from these medications are related to digestion and filtration, the symptoms of poisoning are reliably related to those systems. Things to look out for if you suspect your dog has gotten hold of human pain meds include vomiting. If the dog has enough aspirin or ibuprofen in its system, that vomit may contain blood, as may the dog's feces, which may express itself as bloody diarrhea.
  Seemingly innocuous symptoms include lack or loss of appetite, which can lead to fatigue and lethargy. In large enough amounts or given enough time, the dog may experience abdominal pain, which can lead the dog to hunch over or struggle to find a comfortable resting position. The dog may also seem confused or disoriented. In more advanced cases, a dog who has ingested aspirin or ibuprofen not meant for them can have seizures and even lapse into a coma. Basically, it's bad news all the way around.

What is Glucosamine?
  Glucosamine is a herbal medication that gives immediate relief from pain to dogs. It is also effective in humans. These can be easily found in drug stores. You can also get it from your veterinarian. Taking it from a veterinarian would be a better idea since he/she will know the safest brand to take.

Use of Acetaminophen as a Pain Reliever for Dogs
  Always consult with your veterinarian before giving your dog acetaminophen. The medication is easy to overuse if you don't know the exact safe dosage. Overuse of this pain killer can cause liver and kidney damage.
  If your veterinarian does advise you to use acetaminophen over drugs approved for use in dogs, the dosage should never be more than 10 milligrams per pound. In addition, you'll never give more than two or three doses per day or serious side effects could occur.

What is Tramadol?
  Tramadol is an analgesic. These can be given in place of NSAIDs or along with them. Tramadol do not have side effects to the extent of NSAIDs or aspirin. They are great for chronic pain in both dogs and humans. Tramadol are given to arthritis patients also. The dosage should be limited to what is prescribed by the veterinarian. Overdose can lead to damage to the liver, nervous system or kidney.
What is Adequan?
  Adequan is meant to heal the pain caused by joint injuries and arthritis. They are also known to repair the areas of problems. It does not have any side effects and can be given to dogs safely. However, you will need the assistance of a specialist, since this medicine can only be given through injections.

Are Narcotics Safe?
  Narcotics are considered as an unpleasant aspect. However, it is one of the best pain relievers known. If narcotics are given in a controlled manner and under expert supervision, they can be the best way you can help your dog escape the pain. Narcotics is usually used in serious health conditions, post-surgical conditions, to fight cancer, or to treat large amount of pain. Some of the examples of narcotics that veterinarian are allowed to use are Fentanyl Patches, Amantadine, and Neurontin etcetera.

Is your dog in pain? Consult a vet!
  Can you give a dog aspirin? Technically yes, but only under certain conditions and doses.   Can you give a dog ibuprofen? Best not. The rule of thumb to follow is that if it's human pain medication, think twice before offering it to your dog, even with the purest motives and the best of intentions. After you think twice, put the bottle of ibuprofen or aspirin back in the medicine cabinet. If you cannot get to a vet, then at least give one a call - in the long run, it's possible you'll spare your dog further and completely unnecessary pain.
  If you have dogs, especially if they have free reign of the house, make certain that all human medications are safely and securely bottled. Then see to it that your cache of aspirin, ibuprofen, and all your other medications for that matter, are stored in cabinets, boxes, cupboards, or other home-storage facilities well out of reach. As we all know, dogs can get into mischief around the house; knock the wrong thing over, or the wrong thing open, and trouble can follow.

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Dog Adoption Checklist

Dog Adoption Checklist
  Congratulations on deciding to adopt a dog! You are embarking on a wonderful and rewarding relationship. When you adopt a dog there are many responsibilities and lifestyle adjustments to consider.

Questions for All Adopters:
  • Do you have any other dogs and how will they react to a new dog?
  • Is your current residence suited to the dog you’re considering?
  • How will your social life or work obligations affect your ability to care for a dog?
  • Do you have a plan for your new dog during vacations and/or work travel?
  • How do the people you live with feel about having a dog in the house?
  • Are you  intolerant of hair, dirt and other realities of sharing your home with a dog, such as allergies?
  • Do you or any of your household/family members have health issues that may be affected by a dog?
  • What breed of dog is the best fit with your current lifestyle?
  • Is there tension in the home? Dogs quickly pick up on stress in the home, and it can exacerbate their health and behavior problems.
  • Is there an adult in the family who has agreed to be ultimately responsible for the dog’s care?
Your dog is more likely to get loose from you and lost in the first few weeks they are home than any other time.  Be sure to provide them a secure collar and ID tag as soon as possible.  Actually, its a great thing to bring with you when you pick up your newly adopted pet.  And make sure they wear their collar at all times.  Often people make the mistake of removing the collar when their dog is in the house thinking they will never get out of the house without it.  Sadly, too often owners forget to put the collar back on or the dog slips out the door unexpectedly and is now lost without any identification.  Get a collar and tag as soon as possible!

  All dogs require a veterinary exam, a series of vaccinations and regular grooming.  While we will given them their Parvo Distemper (DHLPP) vaccination, Bordatella (INB - kennel cough) and worming, puppies may require additional vaccinations and worming after adoption, so make sure and follow up with your vet for these if needed.  Also all dogs will need their Rabies vaccination if they have not had it already.

  Your home and yard should provide proper confinement and reasonable space for the size of your dog.  When outside, your new dog or puppy should always be on a leash if you don’t have a safe enclosure.

   New house pets should be closely supervised when with other pets and children while they become familiar with their new home.

  Housebreaking your new dog should be done with encouraging words. They should be taken outside after meals and right before and after sleeping. Crate training is an effective training method. There is lots of useful training information on the Web and specifically crate training.

  All dogs need exercise, so allow your dog to play outside everyday. Young dogs and puppies may have extra energy, causing them to chew. Try not to leave them alone for long periods of time and consider crate training to housebreak and curb bad habits.  Organized training is also beneficial and there are several obedience training schools in our area.  Ask friends or other dog owners for the name of someone you can trust. If you cannot find a trainer, HSOP will recommend someone for you.

 In addition to a collar and tag, we also encourage microchipping which we also can do for you here at the Shelter for a small fee.

New Dog Supplies Check List
  • Dog collar, leash, and identification tags
  • Nutritious dog food
  • Dog crate or carrier
  • Dog bed
  • Food and water bowls
  • Dog grooming tools (shampoo, brush and nail clippers)
  • Dog toys
  • Treats & chews  
Other Considerations:
  • What do you expect your dog to contribute to your life? For example, do you want a running and hiking buddy, or is your idea of exercise watching it on TV?
  • If you are thinking of adopting a young dog, do you have the time and patience to work with the dog through its adolescence, taking house-breaking, chewing and energy-level into account? 
  • Have you considered your lifestyle carefully and determined whether a younger or older dog would be a better match for you?
  • Can you train and handle a dog with behavior issues or are you looking for an easy-going friend?
  • Do you need a dog who will be reliable with children or one you can take with you when you travel?
  • Do you want a dog who follows you all around the house or would you prefer a less clingy, more independent character?
Size Considerations:
  • What size dog can your home accommodate?
  • Will you have enough room if your dog grows to be bigger than expected?
  • What size dog would suit the other people who live in or visit your home regularly?
  • Do you have another dog to consider when choosing the size of your next dog?
  • How big a dog can you travel comfortably with?
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How to Understand and Help Prevent Black Dog Syndrome

How to Understand and Help Prevent Black Dog Syndrome
   It's a truism among dog lovers that black dogs are less likely to get adopted at shelters. But is it actually true?
  Black dog syndrome or big black dog syndrome is a disputed phenomenon in which black dogs are passed over for adoption in favor of lighter-colored animals. Animal shelters often use the term BBD, or big black dog, to describe the type of larger dark-colored mixed-breed said to be typically passed over by adopters.
  The phenomenon may be due to a number of factors, including fear stigma against certain breed types, and the fact that large, black dogs are often portrayed as aggressive in film and on television.
  Some people believe that during the pet adoption process some potential owners associate the color black with evil or misfortune , and this bias transfers over to their choice of dog.Additionally, many shelters feature photo profiles of their dogs on the shelter website. Because black dogs do not photograph well, lighter-colored dogs have an advantage with potential adopters browsing the site. A study done by the Los Angeles Animal Services challenges some of these claims, saying that a full 28% of adopted dogs are black. However, the bias theory simply asserts that predominantly dark animals take longer to be adopted than their lighter counterparts, and that large dogs take longer to adopt than small ones.

History
  The issue has been gaining media attention since the mid-2000s. Tamara Delaney, an early activist against black dog syndrome, developed a website called Black Pearl Dogs in 2004 specifically to address the issue, both by educating the public about its existing, as well as showcasing individual dogs available for adoption. The website caught on quickly in the sheltering community, and helped lead
  However, appearance in general does play a role in potential adopters' selection of shelter dogs. In a 2011 study by the ASPCA, appearance was the most frequently cited reason for adopters of both puppies (29 percent) and adult dogs (26 percent).

Shelter studies
  • A 1992 article in the journal Animal Welfare, found that color was not a major factor in adoptions at a Northern Ireland shelter; black-and-white coats were most prevalent among adopted dogs, followed by yellow, solid black, gold, and black-and-tan coats.
  • A 1998 study of 1,468 relinquished dogs offered for adoption at a local humane society found having a primarily black coat color was a variable associated with euthanasia, while gold, gray, and white coats colors were significant predictors of successful adoption.
  • A 2002 study published in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science of dog and cat adoption in California animal shelters found pure black coat colors to be negative factors in adoption rates for both dogs and cats.
  • In 2008 the general manager of the Los Angeles Animal Services department reported that twelve months of data on the intake of 30,046 dogs showed slightly more dogs that were predominantly or all black were adopted than dogs who were not predominantly or all black.
  • A 2010 PhD thesis analyzing multiple factors found a measurable variance contributing to dogs with primarily black coats being euthanized rather than adopted.
  • A 2013 study of dogs' length of stay (LOS) at two New York “no-kill” shelters determined that canine coat color had no effect.The study noted that coat color's effect on LOS may be localized, or may not generalize to traditional or other types of shelters.
  • A Masters thesis analysis of 16,800 dogs at two Pacific Northwest shelters found that black dogs were adopted more quickly than average at both shelters.
  • A 2013 study of cat adoption rates published in The Open Veterinary Science Journal concluded that “Results indicated that black cats, regardless of age or sex, require the longest time to adopt. They are followed by primarily black cats with other colors.”
What you can do
  Whether or not you’re currently looking to adopt, you can do a lot to help pets who suffer from BDS!
  • Display your love of black pets proudly to demonstrate that there is nothing wrong with them. Share our Black Fur Badge on your website (see it below)!
  • Encourage friends to look past their first impressions of a black pet.
  • Tell people about BDS! It’s generally an unconscious prejudice and most people will move past it once they’re aware.
  • Remind people that their parents were right: personality is more important than appearance. It’s just as true for pets as for people!
Steps:
  • Understand why BDS occurs. If you're going to tackle the problem of BDS, then you need to understand the motivations behind it in order to respond to them.
  • Train the black dog. Several cute tricks may be the ticket to help get a black dog adopted. A higher education is many dogs' hope for a successful interview with a new family.
  • Use a bright background when photographing a dark dog, even a quilt will do. Dark dogs don't stand out in photos, so they don't tend to look their best photographed in a shelter. Black is a difficult color to photograph well, so select someone from the shelter staff or volunteers who loves a photography challenge!
  • Sell the breed, not the color. Think of all the qualities of the breed that will suit the person who might be adopting the dog and make these a strong selling point. For instance, rottweilers and dobermans are both very loyal breeds, and would be good for a one-master home. Perhaps print up a card or make a poster with the great new photo of the black dog and point out all the excellent traits of the dog's breed, using bullet points to make them stand out.
  • Make good points out of bad points. If the person considering the adoption of a dog says something like, "Oh, but he's too big!", promote the qualities of a big dog. Large dogs may be much more laid back than smaller, more energetic breeds, and also many large breeds have been shown to get along better with other dogs, which can be helpful for an owner looking to create a multi dog household. If the person wants a dog for security, point out that people tend to be more afraid of black dogs than dogs of lighter colors.
  • Tell everyone to spay and neuter all their pets. None of the black dogs came on a UFO from a distant planet; each came from a non-fixed pair of pets, as a result of poor human decision-making . Encourage all owners to be responsible by having the dogs spayed or neutered before they leave the shelter.

  So is Black Dog Syndrome a real thing? The best answer is "maybe-kinda-sorta." Some studies show it occurring in certain times and places, and sometimes dogs with dark coats actually get adopted faster. Fashions in what kind of dogs people want come and go with time, and there are factors that usually outweigh color, such as breed. In other words, it's there, but maybe not as important as we often are led to think.

For more informations:
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How to Persuade Your Parents to Get a Dog

How to Persuade Your Parents to Get a Dog
  This is a common question and something that a lot of kids need to deal with. Personally I think that all kids should be allowed to have a dog; not all parents agree with me, of course. Dogs require a lot of time, a lot of work, and sometimes they even require a lot of money. This is usually why parents decide not to get a dog.
  The most important thing to remember is that dogs are intelligent living beings that have thoughts and feelings. Dogs and other pets cannot be cast aside when we are busy or lose interest. When you get a pet, you get responsibilities that last a long time.
  The first step in convincing your parents to have a dog is to find out what they think about having a dog. The more you can find out what their concerns are, the better you can put forward your ideas.

What Every New Dog Owner Should Know
  If you are thinking about getting a puppy, you'll want to make sure that the puppy is right for you. First, you want to make sure the dog is child-friendly if you have kids. You want to figure out what size of dog you want and the energy level of dog you want. Then you need to start looking at good places to get your dog. This process could take a while but it's worth it. You may want to go to many different shelters and ethical breeders to make sure you have found the right dog. You really want to make sure that you and your family get along with the new puppy.

  There are several reasons why your parents may not want a dog:
  • Dogs cost money.
  • They are a lot of work.
  • They need long-term commitment.
  • Some people are allergic to dogs.
  • Some people don't like dogs.
  The costs of a dog include:
  • the original purchase price
  • veterinarian bills
  • food
  • obedience classes
  • other things that the dog needs, such as leashes and toys.
Show the Benefits of Having a Dog!
  •   Say that having a dog will make you spend more time with your family. Parents love hearing more about family time and less about all the time you spend away from home with your friends, or all that time you spend online alone in your room.
  • Say that having a dog will make you spend more time outside. Are your parents tired of all the time you spend alone in your dark room, staring at your computer or playing video games? Are they always telling you to go outside and enjoy the sunshine? If so, tell them that having a dog will make you spend more time in the park, in the sunlight, and more time getting physical exercise instead of texting your friends or eating junk food.
  • Show them that having a dog can improve your mental health. Having a dog is therapeutic -people who own dogs have been known to live longer and to be happier. A dog knows when you're upset and can comfort you in times of stress. Dogs are intuitive creatures that know exactly how to cheer up their owners. Maybe your parents spend a lot of time at work - tell them that having a dog in the house will not only be soothing for everyone, but that a dog can keep you company while they're away.
  • Show them that having a dog will make them feel more secure. Homes that obviously have dogs inside are known to be much less likely to be robbed. Show your parents that a dog, once trained, will not only be your life long companion, but he'll also be your protector. If you're old enough for your parents to go on vacation without you, tell them how much more secure you'd feel if there was a dog by your side.
  • Show them that having a dog will teach you responsibility. Though you should already demonstrate responsibility to show your parents that you're capable of having a dog, tell them that having a dog will make you an even more responsible and careful person, whether you're headed to high school or college in a few years.
  • Show them the benefits of getting the particular dog you want. You should do your research to find the breed of dog you want and how and when you can get it. Don't just abstractly say, "I want a dog!" Instead, say, "I want a chocolate lab!" or whatever breed of dog you may like. This shows that you have put time and effort into thinking about what kind of dog you want and how it will benefit you and your family.'
Address Their Concerns
  • Show them that you will walk the dog. They may be worried that you will get the dog, get bored, and force them to take care of the little creature instead. Tell them that you've already selected the best walking times for the dog and are determined to walk the dog every day; if you have a sibling, show that you've split up the walking duties. To prove your point, you can even go for walks on your own during the appointed doggie-walking times. Show them that you mean business.
  • Show them that the dog won't destroy their home. Your parents may be worried that the dog will chew up all of their furniture and cords, bring dirt into the house, and shed all over the place. It's your job to show them that none of this will happen.
  • Show them that you'll be able to give the dog medical care. Do your research in advance and find the best vet in your area. Ask your friends with dogs which vets they recommend, or do research on your own. Try to find a vet that is close to home so you can walk to his office if you don't drive, and show your parents that you've already done your research and can take care of it.
  • Show them that the dog won't be expensive. If cost is really a big concern, you should get a puppy at a pet shelter; the dog won't be expensive and you'll be doing a great deed by taking in a puppy in need. Research how much dog toys, beds, food, leashes, and anything else costs, and make a chart showing your parents how much this adds up to, and how you'll go about paying for it.
  • Show them that you have a game plan for watching the dog if your family goes on vacation. Your mom might ask, "What will we do when we go away to the beach for a week?" Don't get caught off guard and do your research in advance. Find a doggie day care nearby that can take your dog in, or find a close friend or neighbor who is willing to take care of the dog.
  • Show them that you won't get bored with the dog. Your parents may worry that once you get the dog, you'll stop taking care of it after a few weeks. To ease their concerns on this front, tell them that you're willing to wait a few months and to keep discussing the dog to show that this isn't just a passing phase; you're really committed to getting a dog and are willing to wait to show them how dedicated you really are.
Demonstrate Your Responsibility
  • Pull your weight with household chores. If you want your parents to see that you'd be a great dog owner, then you have to be able to do the basics: make your bed, keep your room clean, wash the dishes, and do anything that is required of you. Then, take it to the next level - pick up more household chores, help cook dinner, mow the lawn, do laundry, or do whatever you can to go above and beyond what is required of you.
  • Keep your grades up. If you want your parents to see that you can handle the added responsibility of a dog, then you should make sure to keep your grades up as you continue to ask to add a new member to your family. If you can, try to do even better in school to show them that you're committed to working hard and doing whatever it takes to get the dog.
  • Show them that you can take care of something. Have your parents give you something to take care of for a set amount of time. It can be an egg , a sack of flour, a plant, or even a hamster. Doing well on this test run may show your parents that you're responsible and serious about wanting a dog. Though this may seem silly, you should treat the situation with the utmost seriousness.
  • Do a "test run." If you have a friend or family member who needs someone to take care of his or her dog for a little while, you should take them up on their offer. Taking in the dog for the weekend or a few days will show your parents that you're ready to take on a pet, and it will make them see how happy you are to be hanging out with a furry creature.
  • Get a part-time job if you can. Depending on your age, you can get a part-time job at the mall or at the store at your local pool club. Maybe you can deliver papers, babysit, or help out a neighbor with chores, mowing the lawn, or shoveling snow. Getting a part-time job or even just finding a small way to make money will help your parents see that not only will you be able to handle some of the expenses of having a dog, but also that you're able to take on added responsibility.
  • Give them time to think about it. Remember, don't ask them over and over every day, or they will shut you out. If they say no, keep showing maturity and understanding, keep being helpful in the house, and occasionally mention the dog, to make them get used to the idea. Being patient will also show them that you're so committed that you're willing to wait.
Tips

  • Dogs, especially puppies, need a lot of things to chew on while they are developing their teeth. You can also find suggestions on how to keep your dog from chewing your shoes and clothes. You must be prepared to get them appropriate toys to chew.
  • Offer to pay for the dog yourself. This will show that you want one enough to spend your own money on it, and that you won't think of it as just another toy to play with until you get bored.
  • While you are waiting for your parents approval, here are some other ways to be around dogs: find out where the animal shelters are in your neighborhood and go volunteer there to help take care of some homeless dogs or find out if there are elderly neighbors who have dogs and cannot walk them regularly. You could volunteer to walk their dogs for them, even for free if you are okay with that.
  • If your parents say no because the weather in your area doesn't allow the dog to live outdoors, find an indoor area that is acceptable to your parents where the dog can stay when the weather is bad.
  • In some cases, family members might be afraid of getting a dog. For example, if a previous dog bit a friend/ family member, was too aggressive,or was too hyperactive, most parents will hesitate before agreeing to get a dog. However, if you wait a while  and you still want a dog, they will most likely have gotten over their fears or peeves.
Your Pup's First Day Home
  When your new puppy is brought home, make sure to spend lots of time with him, so he gets used to the new environment. If you have any other pets at home, give them equal attention so they still feel loved. Bring your new pup to a room with all of his new toys, food and bed. This will be the "puppy" room for the next few days. Once the puppy has been in the house for a couple weeks he can explore other rooms.
  If you follow any tips or instructions above it will help prepare our family for a puppy. I hope this essay will convince you to get a new family member for our household.

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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Why Do Dogs Pant?

Why Do Dogs Pant?
  Have you ever seen a clever pooch wipe his face with a bandana on a particularly hot day? Probably not. Dogs are built to handle the heat very differently than their owners are.

  Dogs pant. They pant when they’re hot, they pant when they’re excited, they pant when they’re scared, and sometimes they seem to pant for no good reason at all (from our point of view, at least). When a dog is panting more than expected, should an owner be concerned? The answer is "maybe."
  Excessive panting can be a sign of a medical problem, including obesity, heart problems, diseases of the lung, laryngeal paralysis, canine cognitive dysfunction and other disorders that cause anxiety, steroid use, Cushing’s disease, and more. If your dog has begun panting at what appears to be inappropriate times, the first thing you should do is make an appointment with your veterinarian.
  My normal work-up for a dog that is panting a lot includes a history, physical exam, chest X-rays, a blood chemistry panel, complete blood cell count, urinalysis, fecal examination, and heartworm test if prevention and testing is not current. Depending on my findings, I might also recommend an EKG, blood pressure testing, a laryngeal exam under light sedation, and additional testing for Cushing’s disease.
  Most dogs, especially those with thick coats, are really built for cold weather. Dogs just can’t dissipate heat as well as animals that can sweat. With any type of exercise, even my thin-coated boxer quickly turns into a pooped-out panter in the summertime. So, while you might feel that the temperature indoors or out is on the cool side, your dog could very well be thinking, "Who turned up the heat?" Pay attention to your dog’s behavior. If he is seeking out cool places in the house or yard and doesn’t pant when he finds one, you’ve probably found your answer.
  This type of heat intolerance becomes even more profound as dogs age. I’ve met many an elderly dog that seems to be on his last legs during the summer months, but bounces back when winter arrives.
  While they do sweat from their paw pads and other less furry areas, the primary way dogs cool off is through panting. Panting is very rapid, shallow breathing that enhances the evaporation of water from the tongue, mouth and upper respiratory tract. Evaporation dissipates heat as water vapor.
  Magic? Pretty close. A panting dog can take 300 to 400 breaths per minute (the normal canine breathing rate is 30 to 40 breaths per minute), yet it requires surprisingly little effort. Because of the natural elasticity of the lungs and airways, panting does not expend much energy, nor does it create additional heat. Pretty cool, indeed.


Here are a few of the more common reasons.

Dogs arent't like people
  Obviously, dogs have a vastly different physiology than people. For one thing, dogs have fur - the equivalent of a coat. Imagine you’re running around in the hot sun, with a coat on, and you can’t take it off! After a while, you’d start to sweat and look for something to drink -- the cooler the better.

Science of Sweat
  Water locks in heat and carries it away from your body. That's why we sweat when we get hot—our bodies are regulating our temperatures, forcing excess heat out in beads of sweat. Since we have unobstructed pores all over our bodies, sweating comes pretty easily. Dogs, however, don't have that luxury. The only place where a dog can sweat is his foot pads, and the rest of his body is covered in a fur coat that he can't take off. Since he can't sweat, what's a hot dog to do?

Dangerous signs- heatstroke
  Panting is a sign that your dog is excited, hot, or both. But panting is also a warning sign. If your dog is taking a break from exercise and continues to pant heavily, this could be a sign of heatstroke – a medical emergency. Move your dog to a cool spot or indoors immediately. When playing with your dog outside in hot weather, it’s vital to bring along water for her to drink too. 

Keeping Cool
  This is why dogs pant: to keep cool. When a dog opens his mouth and pants, he's releasing moisture the best way he can. This is why your dog's breath is so hot and moist—not particularly appealing, perhaps, but it's his body's most efficient way of dispensing that extra body heat. A dog's mouth breath is actually warmer than his nasal breath, so when he opens up that trap, his tongue actually expands and he pushes heat straight out of his body.

Dangerous signs- poisoning, allergic reaction
  Panting can also be an important sign that something is physically wrong with your dog, especially if there is no discernible reason as to why she is panting. When accompanied by other signs like lethargy and vomiting, panting can be an indicator that your dog has ingested poison or is having a severe allergic reaction that is affecting her ability to breathe. This is especially important to watch out for if your dog is on any kind of medication.

Heavy Panting
  Of course, panting isn't always just how your dog stays cool. Certain medical conditions can cause your dog to pant—not necessarily because he's hot, but because he's out of breath. Heart failure, injuries and respiratory disorders like pneumonia can make him pant more than usual. If your dog isn't chronically ill, he may have exercised too vigorously, or become overheated. An overheated dog is going to pant relentlessly in an attempt to cool down, but as his doting owner, you can step in and help.

Dangerous signs- illness
  Another possible reason your dog suddenly starts to pant is as a symptom of illness. A sudden increase in heart rate and panting to catch her breath can be a warning that your dog has a heart problem. Other illnesses that can cause your dog to suddenly start panting include respiratory problems like pneumonia and Cushing’s syndrome (adrenal glands producing too much cortisol).

Cooling Off
 If your dog appears to be overheated and panting too much, there isn't much he can do, but you can help him cool down. For example, hold him in front of a fan or air conditioner to help his body cool down. Give him a bath in cool water, and give him cold water to drink. He may even enjoy licking an ice cube to cool off. Don't cool him down too fast, though, or it will be a shock to his system—he needs to have his temperature lowered gradually. If you suspect overheating or heatstroke, take him to a vet as soon as you can.

Head for cover!
  While relaxing indoors, a dog may suddenly start panting if an electrical storm passes by. This is a normal fear response -- dogs are easily startled by loud noises and bright flashes of light (such as with thunder and lightning). Dogs also look to people to know how to act, so if you act normal during a storm, they’ll be less prone to panic. Still, if your dog feels the need to hide under the bed (or under your legs), allow her to do that until she feels that the worst is over.



In short, if your dog is panting a lot, get him checked out by your vet, but don’t panic. As a friend recently put it, the dog may simply have "excessive panting syndrome." You won’t find that diagnosis in any veterinary textbook, but it seems to fit the bill in many cases.

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Top dog breeds for kids

Top dog breeds for kids

There are many great dogs to consider when looking for your next pet. In order to determine the best fit for your family, you must first be realistic about how a dog will affect your children.
  It is important to know that many of the dogs considered worst for getting along with kids are often miss-trained or not properly cared for.
  A common factor that places dogs in shelters is families who don’t choose the right pet for their lifestyle and don’t know how to manage the pet.

1. Bull Dog
   The Bull Dog has a sturdy build that is perfect for kids who like to roughhouse. However, it won’t win any awards for "most energetic dog." A docile, friendly, and loyal dog, it gets along well with other pets and dogs, too. The Bull Dog is comfortable living in large houses as well as small apartments.


2. Beagle
  Originally kept as hunting dogs, Beagles fit well in homes with active kids, as they are sturdily built and never too tired to play a game. Friendly, clever and cheerful, the Beagle usually gets along with other pets, too (except for a bit of chasing here and there). They do shed, and require frequent brushing and bathing, however.
  While your beagle most likely won't have a bird named Woodstock as his best friend, you can, by all means, name him (or her) Snoopy.

3.Bull Terrier
  Unfairly branded as an aggressive animal, the Bull Terrier was actually bred to be a companion dog -- friendly and loving towards grown-ups and kids alike. This well-framed dog also has a high threshold for pain, making it perfect for rambunctious children who are learning how to properly treat dogs.
  The Bull Terrier can get quite rambunctious and requires plenty of playtime. Therefore, it is a perfect dog for a large family. The Bull Terrier will return your affection by being very protective of your children.

4.Collie
  This is the dog Lassie made famous. Collies are a very gentle and predictable breed, rarely biting its human family and easily trainable, perfect for families that are unfamiliar with dogs.
  While this breed is typically mild mannered (like Clark Kent!), it was originally bred as a herding dog, so it may try and herd your children. This might be amusing at first, but it's probably best to discourage the child-herding (no matter how handy you may think it could be). The Collie's long hair means it requires regular grooming to keep its coat in tip-top shape. Collies get along great with children and love to please their owners and protect their family.


5. Newfoundland
  Nicknamed "Nature’s Babysitter," the Newfoundland dog loves children and is very protective of them. Gentle, kind, and patient, this breed is almost like the Mother Teresa of dogs. Both young and old will quickly fall in love with this wonderfully sweet, large dog.
  The Newfoundland best suits a family with large open spaces. And although it is known to drool and shed excessively, it is not considered a proper dog for the yard. This breed wants to be inside with its family. Wouldn’t you? The Newfoundland is also a great swimmer and has been known to save lives in emergency situations.

6. Vizsla
  This may be a breed you haven't heard of before, but it's actually one of the best dog breeds for kids. The Vizsla has a gentle disposition and manner, and is loyal, affectionate, and quiet, perfect for your little ones to play with.
  Additionally, it is obedient, confident and smart, forming close bonds with its family and able to learn new tricks quickly. Best of all, the Vizsla has very little "doggy" smell about it.

7. Irish Setter
  Known for its red coat, the Irish Setter is playful, energetic, loves being around people, and plays well with children. This doggy needs lots of exercise, and is a good match for energetic kids. A smart and trainable companion, the Irish setter is perfect for people with a yard.

8. Poodle
  Often given rather curious haircuts by their owners, the poodle is a very smart and gentle dog. It's also great for kids with allergies, as it sheds very little; it does, however, require scheduled grooming.
  This is a proud and elegant dog that is both caring and loyal. Seldom annoyed or bored, the Poodle's friendly demeanor, good nature, and patience make it an excellent playing partner for any child.

9. Labrador Retriever
  This is one of the most popular dog breeds, and for good reason -- the Labrador Retriever is playful, patient, loving, protective, and reliable. In fact, its sweet personality and intelligence is only matched by its beauty. What does this mean for you? A perfect family pet.

10. Golden Retriever
  Not as big as the Lab, the Golden Retriever is a kind, smart, confident, and loyal dog. Neither aggressive nor timid, the Golden Retriever is extremely patient, which is perfect for kids. While it does need a lot of exercise, its love of play makes this an easy thing to achieve.

11. Pug
  This pint-sized pup has an irresistible face and prominently curved tail that any child will find intriguing. The Pug does especially well in a moderate climate but is just as comfortable hanging out indoors to keep your kiddos entertained.

12. Yorkshire Terrier
Though a tiny canine, the Yorkie has a big adventurous personality that makes it an engaging dog. This affectionate pint-sized pup is an ideal pet if your family loves travel — it will keep your kids affectionately entertained in the back seat while you're en route.


13. Miniature Schnauzer
  The most popular of the three Schnauzer breeds (which include the giant and standard sizes), the Mini Schnauzer is an intelligent and cheerful canine that is as happy hanging out in the house with the family as it is romping outdoors with the kids in the yard or at the park.

14. Havanese
  This toy-sized silky-coated canine is in high demand as a family pet because of its affectionate temperament, easy trainability and hypoallergenic non-shedding coat. The Havanese is as eager to be a loved-on lap dog as it is to playfully chase the kids around.

15. Shetland Sheepdog
If you've got a big yard or live on a farm, the Sheltie will keep your kids well-exercised. One of the best obedience breeds, this long-haired, energetic beauty thrives on physical and mental activity.

  The Boston Terrier is a diminutive dapper-looking dog that has a gentle disposition and enjoys being close by its family's side.



  If the French bulldog is the clown-philosopher, the Cavalier King Charles spaniel may be the joker of the canine community. Named for King Charles II of Britain, these dogs' whimsical and high-spirited personalities can instantly charm even the hardest heart. They are very friendly and vivacious animals with virtually no tendency toward nervousness or aggression, Jones says.

  Cavalier King Charles spaniels are highly adaptable in their need for exercise, which is great for families who like to get out and play but also appreciate a little rest and relaxation. Jones adds that these pups are smart, obedient and generally quite eager to learn. According to the AKC, they're also relatively low-maintenance, requiring little more than weekly brushing to keep them looking great.



18. Pembroke Welsh Corgi
  Bold and friendly, the Corgi thrives on having work to do. Considered a herding dog, this strong, sturdy pup is ideal if your family lives on a farm but, if given adequate mental and physical stimulation, can adapt easily to any living situation.



The pint-sized Miniature Poodle is a top pet choice for kids with allergies. Highly intelligent, this cuddly fluff ball easily entertains its family with smile-evoking antics and heartwarming cuddles.


  If you're into royalty, you'll love the Maltese. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), these playful and affectionate creatures have lounged alongside aristocrats for the past 28 centuries. And this is no surprise when you consider their beautiful silken locks, gentle dispositions and constant cheerfulness.
  Despite being bred for lounging on the bed -- or chaise, as the case may be -- the Maltese is actually quite enthusiastic about learning and highly trainable. The only possible downside to having a Maltese in a family with kids is that this animal needs to be brushed daily, which may be too big a responsibility for younger kids or those with only a passing interest in their pet.

21. Brussels Griffon Terrier
  The Brussels Griffon terriers are extremely lovable and sensitive animals. They will follow you around for as long as it takes to win your attention. They're also very loyal and protective. These great qualities, Weiss says, combined with the fact that they're remarkably obedient, make these pups excellent watchdogs and fun playmates for children.
  Bred in Belgium as rat catchers, Brussels Griffons are extremely smart dogs that love to learn and excel in training. But despite generally cheerful, energetic dispositions, they are also perfectly content to be snoozing in the sun room.


22. French Bulldog
  The French bulldog has been called a "clown in the cloak of a philosopher," which, according to the AKC, essentially means that dogs of this breed are smart with a powerful penchant for play. They're very lively and social, but not overly boisterous or barky. In fact, Weiss says their stellar doggie demeanors stand out among other dogs, large and small.
  Bred to be loungers, French bulldogs require very little in the way of exercise or grooming. They're also heavy-boned and fearless, which makes this breed a good choice for families who want a pet that's playful, but not too skittish or delicate. However, one important consideration is that French bulldogs do best in a mild climate, which means they need air conditioning when the temperature rises.

23. Shih Tzu
  The fact that Shih Tzu means "lion dog" in Chinese is misleading, considering that most members of this breed probably couldn't hurt a fly, let alone bring down a gazelle. Shih Tzus are ideal small dogs: lively and alert, yet rarely nervous or snappy. And despite their diminutive stature, they're strong and unafraid, which means they have no trouble holding their own when playing with children and keeping up with an active family.
  The Shih Tzu's long, luxurious coat of hair is certainly beautiful, but it can also be a lot of work to maintain. If you're considering a Shih Tzu, keep in mind that they do require regular grooming. Most pet parents don't mind this aspect of caring for their Shih Tzus, though, considering these dogs' infinitely loving and loyal nature.

24. Pomeranian
  The Pomeranian is an adorable dog with a mellow and gentle personality, but they can sometimes get noisy (just like children). As a matter of fact, if you want a Pomeranian, they are great with kids, just as long as they are introduced as puppies. However, because Pomeranians shed profusely, it may not be the best choice for a house with very small children.

25. Chihuahua
  Meek though they may look, this small dog can really pack a punch in attitude. They are known for nipping at children (probably not the best choice for a house with kids) or barking incessantly at strange dogs. They can also be loud and demanding. But before you cross this breed off the list, you should know that the Chihuahua is loyal and affectionate, even seen canoodling with cats every one in awhile (after an adjustment period, of course).


Good luck finding the best dog for your family!

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