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Showing posts with label puppy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label puppy. Show all posts

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Everything about your English Bulldog

Everything about your English Bulldog
  The English bulldog is a brawny little powerhouse whose characteristic crablike waddle exudes great strength, stability and vigor.The English Bulldog is a wide, medium-sized, compact dog with short legs. The body and head are massive with extra skin on both the skull and forehead falling in folds. The cheeks extend to the sides of the eyes. The muzzle is wide, short and pug with a broad, deep stop. The black nose is broad with large nostrils. The dark eyes are deep set. The rose ears are small, thin and set high on the head. 
  The jaws are massive, very broad, and square with hanging upper lips. The teeth should have an under bite. The tail is either straight or screwed and carried low. The short, flat coat is straight, smooth and glossy. Coat colors include red brindle and other shades of brindle, solid white, solid red, fawn, fallow, piebald, pale yellow or washed-out red or white or a combination of these colors.
  The Bulldog is a medium-sized breed of dog commonly referred to as the English Bulldog or British Bulldog. Other Bulldog breeds include the American Bulldog, Old English Bulldog , Olde English Bulldogge, and the French Bulldog. The Bulldog is a muscular, heavy dog with a wrinkled face and a distinctive pushed-in nose.The American Kennel Club , The Kennel Club , and the United Kennel Club  oversee breeding standards. Bulldogs are the 5th most popular purebreed in the United States in 2013 according to the American Kennel Club.

Overview
  Laughter, love and a face everyone adores ensure the enduring popularity of the Bulldog. He's a gentle family companion today, but he was originally bred to fight bulls for sport – a past that, combined with his stalwart devotion, has made the breed the mascot of a number of colleges as well as the United States Marine Corps. No breed is more admired for the qualities of loyalty and determination that the Bulldog represents.
  Few breeds are as easily recognized as the Bulldog, with his wrinkled mug, distinctive underbite and Churchillian jowls. Sometimes referred to as the English or British Bulldog, he's a short, sturdy dog with a bow-legged gait, weighing between 40 and 60 pounds.
If all you're talking about is personality and temperament, the Bulldog is just about perfect. He loves children and is very easy to train as a family pet. He's an endless source of amusement, clever and very affectionate. He’s also an attention magnet everywhere he goes.
  The Bulldog may be perfect in spirit, but in the flesh, he’s a different story. These dogs are intolerant of warm weather, and may die if overheated. Too much exercise or stress can make it difficult for them to breathe. Without exception, Bulldogs must live indoors, and need air conditioning in all but the mildest summer weather.
  Most Bulldogs are born by C-section. Because breeding them is expensive, the puppies are, too. Love is an expensive proposition when you own a Bulldog.
  In general, the Bulldog is an easy-care breed. His exercise needs are manageable for even the most dedicated couch potato, and he doesn’t tend to be a picky eater. He has a short coat that doesn’t require any fancy grooming, but he does have some special needs when it comes to skin care. Last but not least, it’s important for him to live in air-conditioned comfort, not only to prevent heatstroke but also because he loves his family and wants to be with them. He’s not a dog who can or should live outdoors.

Highlights
  • Bulldogs can be stubborn and lazy. Your mature Bulldog may not be very enthusiastic about going to a walk, but it's important that he is exercised every day to keep him fit.
  • Bulldogs can't tolerate heat and humidity. When your Bulldog is outdoors, watch him carefully for signs of overheating and take him inside immediately if he starts to show distress. Some people put kiddy play pools filled with water in a shaded spot for their Bulldogs to lie in when the weather is warm and everyone is outside. They definitely are housedogs and should not live outdoors all of the time.
  • Bulldogs are sensitive to cold weather.
  • Bulldogs wheeze, snort, and snore. They also are prone to sleep apnea.
  • Bulldogs are well-known for having flatulence. If this problem seems excessive with yours, talk to your vet.
  • Bulldogs' short noses make them prone to a number of respiratory ailments.
  • Bulldogs can have pinched nostrils that make it difficult for them to breathe and may require surgery to correct.
  • Bulldogs are greedy eaters and will overeat if given the chance. Since they gain weight easily, they can quickly become obese if you don't monitor their food intake.
  • Because of the size of their heads and fronts, Bulldogs have difficulty giving birth. Most require caesareans to deliver their puppies. It isn't advised for inexperienced breeders to try to breed them.
  • As a short-nosed breed, Bulldogs are sensitive to anesthesia. Be sure to talk with your vet about this before any surgeries are done.
  • To get a healthy pet, never buy a puppy from a backyard breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Find a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs for genetic health conditions and good temperaments.
Other Quick Facts
  • The Bulldog has a distinctive walk: a loose-jointed, shuffling, sidewise roll.
  • Many Bulldogs breathe in a labored fashion and it’s often difficult for their bodies to dissipate heat.
  • Bulldogs can’t swim. Their massive head, solid torso and short legs limit their ability to stay above water. If you have a pool, spa or pond on your property, limit your Bulldog’s access to it.
  • The Bulldog’s smooth coat can be brindle, solid white, solid red, fawn or fallow, or piebald.
  • Comparable Breeds: Bull Terrier, French Bulldog
History
  The term "Bulldog" was first mentioned in literature around 1500, the oldest spelling of the word being Bondogge and Bolddogge. The first reference to the word with the modern spelling is dated 1631 or 1632 in a letter by a man named Preswick Eaton where he writes: "procuer mee two good Bulldogs, and let them be sent by ye first shipp". In 1666 Christopher Merret applied: "Canis pugnax, a Butchers Bull or Bear Dog" as an entry in his Pinax Rerum Naturalium Britannicarum.

  The designation "bull" was applied because of the dog's use in the sport of bull baiting. This entailed the setting of dogs onto a tethered bull. The dog that grabbed the bull by the nose and pinned it to the ground would be the victor. It was common for a bull to maim or kill several dogs at such an event, either by goring, tossing, or trampling. Over the centuries, dogs used for bull-baiting developed the stocky bodies and massive heads and jaws that typify the breed as well as a ferocious and savage temperament. Bull-baiting, along with bear-baiting, reached the peak of its popularity in England in the early 1800s until they were both made illegal by the Cruelty to Animals Act 1835. This amended the existing legislation to protect animals from mistreatment and included bulls, dogs, bears, and sheep, so that bull and bear-baiting as well as cockfighting became prohibited. Therefore, the Old English Bulldog had outlived its usefulness in England as a sporting animal and its active or "working" days were numbered. However, emigrants did have a use for such dogs in the New World. In mid-17th century New York, Bulldogs were used as a part of a citywide roundup effort led by Governor Richard Nicolls. Because cornering and leading wild bulls were dangerous, Bulldogs were trained to seize a bull by its nose long enough for a rope to be secured around its neck. Bulldogs as pets were continually promoted by dog dealer Bill George.
  Despite slow maturation so that growing up is rarely achieved by two and a half years, Bulldogs' lives are relatively short. At five to six years of age they are starting to show signs of aging.
  In time, the original old English Bulldog was crossed with the pug. The outcome was a shorter, wider dog with a brachycephalic skull. Though today's Bulldog looks tough, he cannot perform the job he was originally created for as he cannot withstand the rigors of running and being thrown by a bull, and also cannot grip with such a short muzzle.
  The oldest single breed specialty club is The Bulldog Club, which was formed in 1878. Members of this club met frequently at the Blue Post pub on Oxford Street in London. There they wrote the first standard of perfection for the breed. In 1894 the two top Bulldogs, King Orry and Dockleaf, competed in a contest to see which dog could walk 20 miles. King Orry was reminiscent of the original Bulldogs, lighter boned and very athletic. Dockleaf was smaller and heavier set, more like modern Bulldogs. King Orry was declared the winner that year, finishing the 20-mile walk while Dockleaf collapsed. The Bulldog was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1886.
  At the turn of the 20th century, Ch. Rodney Stone became the first Bulldog to command a price of $5,000 when he was bought by controversial Irish American political figure Richard Croker.


Personality
  Sociable and sweet, but with a reputation for courage that makes him an excellent watchdog, the Bulldog is a lover, not a fighter. He's dignified rather than lively and has a kind although occasionally stubborn nature. The Bulldog is friendly and easygoing; he gets along with everyone. He can be a slow learner, but once he knows something, he's got it for good. Bulldogs don't tend to be barkers. Usually their appearance alone is enough to frighten off intruders.
  Temperament is affected by a number of factors, including heredity, training, and socialization. Puppies with nice temperaments are curious and playful, willing to approach people and be held by them. Choose the middle-of-the-road puppy, not the one who's beating up his littermates or the one who's hiding in the corner. Always meet at least one of the parents-usually the mother is the one who's available-to ensure that they have nice temperaments that you're comfortable with. Meeting siblings or other relatives of the parents is also helpful for evaluating what a puppy will be like when he grows up.
  Like every dog, Bulldogs need early socialization-exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences-when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Bulldog puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog. Enrolling him in a puppy kindergarten class is a great start. Inviting visitors over regularly, and taking him to busy parks, stores that allow dogs, and on leisurely strolls to meet neighbors will also help him polish his social skills.

Health Problems
  Prone to breathing problems; some have small windpipes as well. Also poor eyesight, cherry eye, very susceptible to heatstroke in warm weather or hot rooms and cars. Very cold sensitive. Prone to mast cell tumors. Birth defects are common in some lines. Susceptible to skin infections, hip and knee problems. Prone to flatulence, especially when fed any other type of food other than their regular dog food. Puppies are often delivered by caesarian section. Some say it is because of the dogs’ large head size, however others claim you can hardly tell the difference between the head size of a Bulldog with the head size of other breeds when the pups are first born; claiming not enough dams are given the opportunity to try and deliver naturally because of the large head myth. A lot of Bulldogs do run the risk of having weak labors and this could increase the risk of a caesarian.

Care
  Many Bulldogs tend to wheeze and snore, while some drool because of their short snouts and outward protruding lower jaw. These are normal physical side-effects of the breed. Because of the compressed nature of the jaw, extra care needs to be taken in keeping the teeth clean. Early dental care, with daily brushing, will get your Bulldog in the habit so that it is grooming time that is looked forward to. Minimal coat care is needed for this dog, but the folds around the tail and facial wrinkles should be cleaned every day to prevent build up of dirt or rubbish. Failure to perform this regularly can lead to infection of the skin.
  Bulldogs love their daily outings, however, do not expect them to walk or jog long distances, or dart from great heights. The short-hair and snout of the Bulldog make it sensitive to extremely hot and humid climates, and most do not enjoy swimming. Using sun screen lotion on the dog's skin if you are going to be spending time in the sun, and making sure your Bulldog has plenty of water is essential for healthy days out.

Living Conditions
  The English Bulldog is good for apartment life. They are very inactive indoors and will do okay without a yard. This breed is an indoor dog. Bulldogs do best in temperate climates as the breed can chill easily in cold weather and have trouble cooling off in very hot weather.

Exercise
  The English Bulldog needs to be taken on a daily walk to fulfill its primal canine instinct to migrate. Those individuals that do not get this need met are more likely to have behavior issues. While out on the walk the dog must be made to heel beside or behind the person holding the lead, as in a dog's mind the leader leads the way, and that leader needs to be the human. Teach them to enter and exit all door and gateways after the human. English Bulldogs that are in good shape are capable of moving very quickly for short periods of time.

Grooming
  The Bulldog’s coat is easy to groom, but his wrinkles need some special care. Here’s what you need to know.
  Brush the Bulldog’s short coat three times a week with a rubber curry or a soft bristle brush to keep it shiny and healthy. If you keep him well brushed, he shouldn’t need frequent baths. Bulldogs don’t normally shed heavily, but during spring and fall you may see a little more hair coming off when you brush. Step up the brushing until the shedding period ends.
Caring for the facial and nose wrinkles requires a bit more effort. Depending on the individual dog, wrinkles may need to be cleaned a couple of times a week or every day. Wipe out the crud from the wrinkles with a soft, damp cloth or a baby wipe, then dry them thoroughly. If moisture is left behind, wrinkles become the perfect petri dish for bacterial growth. Do the same for the indentation at the tail set and the outer vulval area. If you have any questions about dealing with skin problems or wrinkle issues, talk with your veterinarian who may prescribe a specific care regime.

Children and other pets
  His amiable temperament and bulk make the Bulldog an excellent companion for children, even young ones. A Bulldog will put up with a lot from a child, although he shouldn't have to, and he'll walk away if he gets tired of being tormented.
  Always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's sleeping or eating or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
  With their pacific nature, Bulldogs also get along well with other pets, dogs and cats. They may be less sociable toward strange dogs, however.

Did You Know?
  The same line of English Bulldogs has served as the mascots for the University of Georgia since 1956, under the name of Uga. Each Uga is issued his own student ID and watches games in an air-conditioned doghouse.

Popular mascot
  The Bulldog is popularly used to represent England or the United Kingdom. It has been associated with Winston Churchill's defiance of Nazi Germany. The Bulldog breed is the official mascot of the United States Marine Corps, and many bases have their own mascot on base. Thirty-nine American universities use a Bulldog as their mascot including Bryant University, Drake University, Georgetown University, Mississippi State University, Louisiana Tech University, Yale University, The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina South Carolina State University, and University of Georgia.

10 Interesting Facts About Bulldogs
  • Bulldogs are the 6th most popular breed in America and French bulldogs are ranked 18th. In Los Angeles though, bulldogs are #1, and French bulldogs are #5, according to the American Kennel Club.
  • Warren G. Harding was the only U.S. President to own a bulldog while in office. His pet bulldog, Oh Boy, passed away early during his term as president, and was replaced by an Airedale terrier, Laddie Boy as First Dog.
  • Brigitte, the bulldog who plays Stella on Modern Family, has the distinction of being the first bulldog to win a Golden Collar award. She beat out dog performers from Chelsea Lately, Hot in Cleveland, Entourage, and Suburgatory. She also beat out the only human competitor, Jason Gann, the star of Wilfred.
  • Bulldogs are one of the most popular mascots for universities and sports teams. Uga, the mascot of the University of Georgia team, is one of the most famous. Sonny Seiler, famed as the attorney of Jim Williams in the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, is responsible for selecting who will fulfill Uga’s responsibilities. There have been 8 Ugas since 1956, and the search for Uga IX is currently ongoing.
  • Bulldogs were originally bred in England dating back to the 16th century, believed to be a mix of mastiffs and pugs. The English bulldog is what’s most commonly referred to as a “bulldog” but there are popular French and American varieties as well.
  • Bulldogs have suffered the most airline deaths of any breed due to their respiratory issues. They often suffer from hip dysplasia and other medical concerns.
  • Over 80 percent of bulldogs are delivered by Caesarean section. Having been bred with such large heads precludes most bulldog pups from being delivered naturally.
  • Bulldogs, like many brachycephalic (large-skulled) dogs are not well-suited for water and are in danger of drowning when swimming.
  • Many celebrities own bulldogs including Leonardo DiCaprio, Reese Witherspoon, David Beckham, Ashley Olsen, Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, and Martha Stewart.
  • The famous haute cuisine restaurant elBulli in Catalonia, Spain run by chef Ferran Adrià is named for the French bulldogs belonging to the original owners of the land where the restaurant is located.





  Have fun with your Bulldog  in this week! ;)









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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Everything about your Labrador Retriever

Everything about your Labrador Retriever
 The Labrador is a moderate dog, not extreme in any way. It is square or slightly longer than tall, of fairly large bone and substance. Its broad head and strong jaws should enable it to carry the largest game birds, such as Canada geese. 
 Its heavy body set and strong legs enable it to swim and run powerfully. Its coat, which is short, straight and dense with a soft undercoat, is weatherproof and helps to protect it from icy waters. The Lab is a working retriever and should possess style without over refinement and substance without clumsiness. 
   The most distinguishing characteristics of the Labrador Retriever are its short, dense, weather resistant coat; an "otter" tail; a clean-cut head with broad back skull and moderate stop; powerful jaws; and its "kind," friendly eyes, expressing character, intelligence and good temperament.
  Labrador Retrievers are among the most popular dog breeds out there today. Loyal, easy to get along with, and easy to train, these retrievers could be considered a neighborhood classic all around the United States and even in other parts of the world. But what exactly makes them such popular, well-respected dogs… and does a strong breed always mean that a Labrador Retriever will be the right dog for you?

Overview
  The warm and intelligent Lab is America's number one breed registered with the American Kennel Club. Even non-dog people can recognize a Lab, and artists and photographers have captured his image countless times — usually as the loyal companion, waiting patiently by his owner's side.
  Built for sport, the Lab is muscular and athletic. He has a short, easy-care coat, friendly demeanor, keen intelligence, and plenty of energy. Devotion to this breed runs deep; Labs are loving, people-oriented dogs who live to serve their families, and owners and fans sometimes liken their Labs to angels.
  The breed originated on the island of Newfoundland, off the northeastern Atlantic coast of Canada. Originally called the St. John's dog, after the capital city of Newfoundland, he was bred to help the local fishermen — hauling nets, fetching ropes, and retrieving fish that had escaped the nets — as well as to be a family dog.
  Today, most Labs skip the hard labor and spend their days being pampered and loved by their people. However, some Labs still serve as indispensable working dogs.
  The Lab's sweet nature makes him an excellent therapy dog, visiting homes for the elderly and hospitals, and his intelligence makes him an ideal assistance dog for the handicapped. He also excels as a search and rescue dog or as a retriever for hunters, thanks to his athletic build, strong nose, and courageous nature. And Labs have also become the breed to beat at dog sports such as agility and obedience competitions — especially obedience.
  There's one dog job that Labs are hopeless at: watchdog. In fact, owners say their sweet, helpful Lab is likely to greet an intruder and happily show him where the goods are stashed.
Labrador Retrievers have proven their usefulness and versatility throughout the breed's history, easily shifting from fisherman's companion, to field retriever, to show dog, to modern working dog. One role has remained constant: wonderful companion and friend.

Other Quick Facts
  • The Lab’s short, weather-resistant coat and muscular body are the perfect equipment for outdoor activities like hiking, camping and water sports.
  • Labs are active dogs who need daily exercise and mental stimulation. Without it they can become bored and destructive. Provide them with the attention, training and activity they need or suffer the consequences.
  • Labs come in three colors: black, yellow and chocolate.
  • The Lab has a double coat — a soft, insulating undercoat topped with a short, hard, protective outer layer. Labs shed heavily, and brushing them once or twice a week will help keep the fur from flying.
  • Labs typically have litters of six to eight puppies. Most breeders like to keep puppies until they are at least eight weeks old. This gives the puppies time to learn how to behave toward other dogs and gives the breeder time to evaluate the puppies’ personalities so she can place each one in just the right home. A bonus is that puppies of this age are more mature and more easily housetrained.
  • Comparable Breeds: Golden Retriever, Irish Setter
Highlights

  • Labrador Retrievers love, love, love to eat, and become obese very quickly if overfed. Limit treats, give your Lab plenty of exercise, and measure out regular meals rather than leaving food out all the time. And be warned that the Lab's large appetite extends to people food and even inedible items. Labradors will forage in garbage, counter surf, and can make a meal out of chewed-up items like children's toys.
  • Labrador Retrievers were bred for physically demanding jobs, and they have the high energy that goes along with being a working breed. They need at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise a day. Without it, they can vent their pent-up energy in destructive ways, such as barking and chewing.
  • Labs have such a good reputation that many people think they don't need to bother with training. But Labs are large, energetic animals, and like all dogs, they need to be taught good canine manners. Sign up for puppy and obedience classes as soon as you bring your Lab home.
  • Many people think of Labs as a hyperactive breed. Lab puppies are definitely lively, but most will slow down a bit as they grow up. However, they usually remain fairly active throughout their lives.
  • Labrador Retrievers are not known to be escape artists, but with the right motivation — such as a whiff of something yummy — a Lab will take off. Make sure your Lab has current identification tags and a microchip.
  • The Lab is America's number one dog, which means there are plenty of people breeding Labs who are more interested in filling the demand for Lab puppies than in breeding healthy dogs with good temperaments. To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies, and that they have sound temperaments.
  • If you're looking for a puppy, you'll find that Labs vary depending on what breeder you choose. Some Labs are bred for competitions testing their skill as working dogs, and others are bred to get as close as possible to the ideal look, movement, and temperament of the breed. You'll also find breeders who aim for both looks and utility. Labs bred for the show ring tend to be slightly heavier and more solidly built than those intended for canine careers.
Is this breed right for you?
If you want a dog who...
  • Is large and bouncy, with an enthusiastic attitude toward life
  • Has a short easy-care coat
  • Has a cheerful, tail-wagging nature
  • Thrives on exercise and athletic activities
  • Is steady-tempered and dependable with everyone
  • Is peaceful with other animals
  • Is eager to please and responsive to training
History
  Labrador Retrievers hail from the island of Newfoundland, off the northeastern Atlantic coast of Canada. Originally called St. John's dogs, after the capital city of Newfoundland, Labs served as companions and helpers to the local fishermen beginning in the 1700s.
The dogs spent their days working alongside their owners, retrieving fish who had escaped hooks and towing in lines, and then returned home to spend the evening with the fishermen's family.
  Although his heritage is unknown, many believe the St. John's dog was interbred with the Newfoundland Dog and other small local water dogs.
  Outsiders noticed the dog's usefulness and good disposition, and English sportsmen imported a few Labs to England to serve as retrievers for hunting. The second Earl of Malmesbury was one of the first, and had St. John's dogs shipped to England sometime around 1830. The third Earl of Malmesbury was the first person to refer to the dogs as Labradors.
  Amazingly, Labs — now America's most popular dog — were almost extinct by the 1880s, and the Malmesbury family and other English fans are credited with saving the breed. In Newfoundland, the breed disappeared because of government restrictions and tax laws. Families were allowed to keep no more than one dog, and owning a female was highly taxed, so girl puppies were culled from litters.
  In England, however, the breed survived, and the Kennel Club recognized the Labrador Retriever as a distinct breed in 1903. The American Kennel Club followed suit in 1917, and in the '20s and '30s, British Labs were imported to establish the breed in the U.S.
  The breed's popularity really began to take off after World War II, and in 1991, the Labrador Retriever became the most popular dog registered with the American Kennel Club — and he's held that distinction ever since. He also tops the list in Canada and England.
  Today, Labs work in drug and explosive detection, search and rescue, therapy, assistance to the handicapped, and as retrievers for hunters. They also excel in all forms of dog competitions: show, field, agility, and obedience.

Personality
  In general, Labrador retrievers are excellent family dogs, as long as you keep in mind their need for exercise and training. These are dogs bred to work and work hard and they love to have jobs to do, particularly retrieving.
  Labs are usually good with other dogs, other pets, and children as long as training has toned down their natural exuberance. They are strong dogs and need some obedience training at an early age or they can be seen dragging their owners down the street at will.
Owing to their energetic nature, Labradors who are left alone or not well exercised can become destructive — chewing, digging and barking to excess.
  The field line dogs are especially high-energy dogs, while some of the show line dogs become perfect couch potatoes at an early age. Chewing can be a problem because the strong retrieve urge gives them an oral fixation. Sturdy chew toys, exercise and training all help with this.

Children and other pets
  The Labrador Retriever not only loves kids, he enjoys the commotion they bring with them. He'll happily attend a child's birthday party, and even willingly wear a party hat. Like all dogs, however, he needs to be trained how to act around kids — and kids need to be taught how to act around the dog.
  As with every breed, you should always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's eating or sleeping or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog, no matter how friendly, should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
  If a Lab has had plenty of exposure to other dogs, cats, and small animals, and has been trained how to interact with them, he'll be friendly with other pets, too.

Health
  Labs are prone to hip dysplasia, a malformation of the hip joint that ranges from mild to severe and can cause such disability or pain that major surgery is necessary.
  Dysplastic dogs usually become arthritic. With so many Lab puppies produced each year, it is important to buy from a breeder who x-rays breeding stock for hip dysplasia and only uses those animals with an OFA or PennHIP clearance for breeding. Screening tests on breeding dogs cannot prevent the development of disease in offspring, but it lessens the odds that hip dysplasia will be a problem.
  Labs are also prone to several eye disorders, including progressive retinal atrophy and cataracts, and epilepsy. All Lab breeding stock should have an eye test each year and be registered free of eye disease by the Canine Eye Registry Foundation.
  Purchasing a healthy Lab pup can be a bit difficult, but the research to find just the right breeder and puppy is well worth the trouble. The well-bred Labrador Retriever is one of a handful of wonderful family dogs for a broad spectrum of lifestyles and living situations. A Lab can do field work (for real or in trials and tests), obedience and agility competition, or therapy dog work at local hospitals or nursing homes with owners who are looking for just a bit more than a companion dog. All in all, the well-bred Lab can be the perfect family dog.

Care
  The lovable Lab needs to be around his family, and is definitely not a backyard dog. If he's left alone for too long, he'll probably tarnish his saintly reputation: A lonely, bored Lab is apt to dig, chew, or find other destructive outlets for his energy.
  Labs show some variation in their activity levels, but all of them need activity, both physical and mental. Daily 30-minute walks, a romp at the dog park, or a game of fetch, are a few ways to help your Lab burn off energy. However, a puppy should not be taken for too long walks and should play for a few minutes at a time. Labrador Retrievers are considered "workaholics," and will exhaust themselves. It is up to you to end play and training sessions.
  Labs have such good reputations that some owners think they don't need training. That's a big mistake. Without training, a rambunctious Lab puppy will soon grow to be a very large, rowdy dog. Luckily, Labs take to training well — in fact, they often excel in obedience competitions.
  Start with puppy kindergarten, which not only teaches your pup good canine manners, but helps him learn how to be comfortable around other dogs and people. Look for a class that uses positive training methods that reward the dog for getting it right, rather than punishing him for getting it wrong.
  You'll need to take special care if you're raising a Lab puppy. Don't let your Lab puppy run and play on very hard surfaces such as pavement until he's at least two years old and his joints are fully formed. Normal play on grass is fine, as is puppy agility, with its one-inch jumps.
Like all retrievers, the Lab is mouthy, and he's happiest when he has something, anything, to carry in his mouth. He's also a chewer, so be sure to keep sturdy toys available all the time — unless you want your couch chewed up. And when you leave the house, it's wise to keep your Lab in a crate or kennel so he's can't get himself into trouble chewing things he shouldn't.

Grooming
  Labs are easy-care dogs who don’t need lots of fancy grooming, but there are a few important things to know about their care.
  Item one: Labs shed. A lot. You’ll have less hair lying around the house if you brush your Lab once or twice a week so that the hair goes onto the brush instead of onto your furniture and clothes. A rubber curry brush and a metal shedding blade or wire slicker brush are your new best friends.
  Item two: Labs are water dogs. When your Lab gets wet, and he will, give him a thorough freshwater rinse to remove chlorine, salt or lake muck from his fur, all of which can be drying or otherwise damaging to the coat.
  Item three: Moisture in the ears can increase the risk of ear infections -- especially in a breed already prone to them (due primarily to allergies). Dry the ears thoroughly after a swim, and use an ear cleaner recommended by your veterinarian.
 The rest is basic maintenance. Trim the nails every week or two, as needed. They should never get long enough that you hear them clacking on the floor. Long nails can make it uncomfortable for the Lab to walk, and they can get caught on things and tear off. That’s really painful, and it will bleed a lot. Brush the teeth frequently with a vet-approved pet toothpaste for good dental health and fresh breath.

Did You Know?
  The 2008 tearjerker “Marley and Me” told the story of a rambunctious Labrador Retriever puppy and his influence on his family. Marley was played by a Lab named Jonah, who stole the film from co-starts Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson.

Famous labradors
  As both the most popular breed by registered ownership and also the most popular breed for assistance dogs in several countries, there have been many notable and famous labradors since the breed was recognized.

Assistance dogs
  Endal, a service dog in Britain. Among other distinctions, "the most decorated dog in the world" , the first dog to ride on the London Eye and the first dog known to work a 'chip and pin' ATM card. By Endal's death in March 2009, he and his owner/handler Allen Parton had been filmed almost 350 times by crews from several countries, and a film of a year in Endal's life was in production.

Police, military, rescue and detection dogs

Zanjeer, a detection dog who detected arms and ammunition used in 1993 Mumbai (Bombay) serial explosions. During his service, he helped recover 57 country-made bombs, 175 petrol bombs, 11 military grade armaments, 242 grenades and 600 detonators. His biggest contribution to the police force and the city was the detection of 3,329 kg of RDX. He also helped detect 18 Type 56 rifles and five 9mm pistols.
Lucky and Flo, twin Black Labrador counterfeit detection dogs who became famous in 2007 for "sniffing out nearly 2 million pirated counterfeit DVDs" on a six-month secondment to Malaysia in 2007. Following the multi-million dollar, 6-arrest Malaysian detection, they became the first dogs to be awarded Malaysia's "outstanding service award" and software pirates were stated to have put a £30,000 contract out for their lives.
Sarbi, an Australian special forces explosives detection dog that spent almost 14 months missing in action (MIA) in Afghanistan before being recovered safe and well in 2009.
Jake (rescue dog) a well-known American black labrador who served as a search and rescue dog following the September 11 attacks and Hurricane Katrina.

Pets
Former President of the United States Bill Clinton's Labradors Buddy and Seamus.
Russian President Vladimir Putin's Labrador 'Koni'.

Fiction and media
  Brian Griffin from the animated TV sitcom Family Guy is a white Labrador Retriever.
Bouncer in Neighbours, and Luath in The Incredible Journey, are also famous Labradors on TV.
  Marley is an American Labrador featured in Marley & Me, a best-selling book by John Grogan, and a subsequent film based on Grogan's life and times with Marley.
  On the BBC children's television series Big Barn Farm, Digger is a yellow Labrador puppy.
Rowdy on Scrubs is a taxidermy golden Labrador Retriever involved in various gags on the show.
  Vincent on Lost is a white Labrador Retriever.
Pharaoh and Isis are yellow Labrador Retrievers in the television series Downton Abbey.

Mascots and advertising
  Since 1972, a yellow Labrador pup known as the Andrex Puppy has been an advertising symbol for Andrex (Cottonelle) toilet tissue.
  Michigan State University has an ongoing tradition of Zeke the Wonder Dog. The original "Zeke" as well as the current "Zeke IV" was a yellow Lab, as "Zeke III", and "Zeke II" were black Labs.


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Saturday, November 15, 2014

Everything about your Shih Tzu

Everything about your Shih Tzu
  Shih Tzu are lively and energetic companions. Yet, they are also amazingly low-key and satisfied—assuming they get an adequate amount of attention. They like nothing better than to be held, stroked, petted and pampered by their owners, and are perfectly happy sitting on the couch with you for hours while you dote on them. This is a noble breed—sometimes translating into arrogance and haughtiness, other times into courageousness and politeness—but they are never too proud for a roll on the floor with a treasured squeaky toy.

Overview
  Compact, yet slightly longer than it is tall, the Shih Tzu hides a sturdy body beneath its mantle of luxurious hair. It has a smooth, effortless stride with good reach and drive. Even though its function is that of companion, it should nonetheless be structurally sound. Its expression is warm, sweet and wide-eyed, imparting the impression of trust and friendliness. The long, dense coat is double and fairly straight. 
  The spunky but sweet Shih Tzu is both a gentle lap dog and a vivacious companion. It has an upbeat attitude and loves to play and romp. It is affectionate to its family and good with children. It is surprisingly tough and does have a stubborn streak.


Highlights
  • There is no such breed as an "imperial" or "teacup" Shih Tzu. These are simply marketing terms used by unscrupulous breeders use to indicate a very small or large Shih Tzu.
  • Shih Tzus are difficult to housebreak. Be consistent, and do not allow a puppy to roam the house unsupervised until he is completely trained. Crate training is helpful.
  • The flat shape of the Shih Tzu's face makes him susceptible to heat stroke, because the air going into the lungs isn't cooled as efficiently as it is among longer-nosed breeds. He should be kept indoors in air-conditioning rooms during hot weather.
  • Be prepared to brush and comb the Shih Tzu coat every day. It mats easily.
  • While Shih Tzus are trustworthy with children, they're not the best choice for families with toddlers or very young children because their small size puts them at risk for unintentional injury.
  • The Shih Tzu tends to wheeze and snore, and can be prone to dental problems.
  • While all dogs eat their own or other animals' feces (coprophagia), the Shih Tzu seems especially prone to this behavior. The best way to handle the problem is never let it become a habit. Watch your Shih Tzu closely and clean up poop right away.
  • To get a healthy pet, never buy a puppy from a backyard breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Find a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs for genetic health conditions and good temperaments.
Other Quick Facts
  • Shih Tzus are often called chrysanthemum dogs because of the way their hair grows up from the nose and around the face in all directions.
  • The Shih Tzu may have originated in Tibet, bred by Tibetan lamas to be a tiny replica of a lion, which is associated with Buddhist mythology.
  • The Shih Tzu is prized for his small size, sweet nature, flowing coat, and intelligent mind.
  • The name is pronounced SHEED-zoo.
  • Comparable Breeds: Lhasa Apso, Pekingese
History
  DNA analysis placed the ancestors of today's Shih Tzu breed in the group of "ancient" breeds indicating "close genetic relationship to wolves". Another branch coming down from the "Kitchen Midden Dog" gave rise to the Papillon and Long-haired Chihuahua and yet another "Kitchen Midden Dog" branch to the Pug and Shih Tzu.
  It is also said that the breed originated in China, hence the name "Lion Dog", in 800BC. There are various theories of the origins of today's breed. Theories relate that it stemmed from a cross between Pekingese and a Tibetan dog called the Lhasa Apso. Dogs during ancient times were selectively bred and seen in Chinese paintings. The dogs were favorites of the Chinese royals and were so prized that for years the Chinese refused to sell, trade, or give away any of the dogs. The first dogs of the breed were imported into Europe (England and Norway) in 1930, and were classified by the Kennel Club as "Apsos". The first European standard for the breed was written in England in 1935 by the Shih Tzu Club, and the dogs were recategorised as Shih Tzu. The breed spread throughout Europe, and was brought to the United States after World War II, when returning members of the US military brought back dogs from Europe, in the mid 1950s. The Shih Tzu was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1969 in the Toy Group.
  The breed is now recognized by all of the major kennel clubs in the English-speaking world. It is also recognised by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale for international competition in Companion and Toy Dog Group, Section 5, Tibetan breeds. In the United States, the Shih Tzu ranked the 15th most popular breed in 2013, falling slightly in popularity since 2012, when it was placed in 11th position.



Temperament
  The Shih Tzu is an alert, lively, little dog. It is happy and hardy, and packed with character. The gentle, loyal Shih Tzu makes friends easily and responds well to consistent, patient training. It makes a very alert watchdog. It is courageous and clever.
  Playful and spunky, this affectionate little dog likes to be with people and is generally good with other pets. Some can be difficult to housebreak. The Shih Tzu needs all of the humans in the house to be pack leaders, with the rules of the house made consistently clear.   Owners who allow their dogs to take over may find them to be snappish if they are surprised or peeved. Because of this dog’s small size and its adorable face, it commonly develops Small Dog Syndrome, human induced behaviors where the dog believes he is the boss of humans. This causes a varying degree of behavioral issues, such as, but not limited to separation anxiety, guarding, growling, snapping, and even biting. These dogs may become untrustworthy with children and sometimes adults, as they try and tell the humans what THEY want THEM to do. They will be obstinate as they take their stand and defend their top position in the pack. They may bark obsessively as they try and TELL you what they want. These behaviors are NOT Shih Tzu traits, but rather behaviors brought on by the way they are treated by people around them. Give this dog rules and limits as to what it is and is not allowed to do. Be its firm, stable, consistent pack leader. Take it for daily pack walks to burn mental and physical energy. Its temperament will improve for the better, and you will bring out the sweet, trustworthy dog in it.

Health
  The Shih Tzu has a lifespan of 11 to 16 years. Some of the minor diseases that can affect this breed are renal dysplasia (abnormal growth of tissue), trichiasis (eyelash malformation), entropion, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), otitis externa, patellar luxation, and inguinal (groin) hernia, as well as a major concern like canine hip dysplasia (CHD). This breed is also prone to cataract and dental problems. Eye, hip, and DNA tests can be good for preventive health care, or for management of non-preventive conditions.

Care
  The Shih Tzu doesn't really mind where he lives, as long as he's with you. He's a very adaptable dog who can be comfortable in a small city apartment or a large suburban or country home. He is definitely a housedog and should not be kenneled outside, though he enjoys a bit of backyard play.
  The Shih Tzu is content with short walks each day. He is not an extremely active dog; he's content to sit in your lap, wander around the house, play with his toys, or run to the door to  greet visitors.
  Like other breeds with short faces, the Shih Tzu is sensitive to heat. He should remain indoors in an air-conditioned room (or one with fans) on hot days so he doesn't suffer from heat exhaustion.
  No, the breed cannot fly; but owners commonly report that their Shih Tzu thinks he can. It not unusual for a Shih Tzu to fearlessly jump from a bed or a chair. While they may not seem high to you, these heights are towering to the small Shih Tzu. And, unfortunately, these jumps often end in injury. The breed is front heavy and crashes forward, causing injury or even a concussion to the head. Be very careful when carrying your Shih Tzu. Hold him securely and don't let him jump out of your arms or off furniture.
Even though he's naturally docile and friendly, the Shih Tzu needs early socialization and training. Like any dog, he can become timid if he is not properly socialized when young. Early socialization helps ensure that your Shih Tzu puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.
  Shih Tzus are often considered difficult to housebreak. Most important is to avoid giving your puppy opportunities to have accidents inside — you don't want him to become accustomed to using the carpet. (Some Shih Tzu owners teach their dogs to use a doggie litter box so they don't need to walk them in bad weather or rush home to take them out.) A Shih Tzu puppy should be carefully supervised inside the house until he has not eliminated indoors for at least four to eight weeks. Crate training is helpful for housetraining and provides your dog with a quiet place to relax. A crate is also useful when you board your Shih Tzu or travel.

Living Conditions
  The Shih Tzu is good for apartment life. These dogs are fairly active indoors and will do okay without a yard. This breed is sensitive to the heat.

Exercise
  The Shih Tzu needs a daily walk. Play will take care of a lot of its exercise needs, however, as with all breeds, play will not fulfill its primal instinct to walk. Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display behavior problems. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe, open area off lead, such as a large, fenced-in yard. Do not overfeed this breed or it will quickly become fat.

Grooming
  These little dogs require a good daily grooming using a bristle brush. When kept in a long coat a topknot is usually tied to keep the hair out of the dog's eyes. Some owners prefer to have them trimmed to make the coat easier and less time-consuming to care for. Keep the ear passages and area around the eyes clean. Shih Tzus have sensitive eyes that need to be kept clean. There are special drops you can buy to put in them if needed. Ask your vet what to use on your dog. This breed sheds little to no hair and is good for allergy sufferers if its coat is kept very well groomed, due to the fact that they shed little skin dander.

Children and other pets
  The Shih Tzu is a wonderful family pet. He gets along with other dogs or animals, and his docile personality makes him a good companion for children. Kids should sit on the floor to play with a Shih Tzu puppy, however, so there is no risk of carrying and dropping him. Children should also learn to keep their fingers away from the Shih Tzu's prominent eyes, which can be easily injured.

Did You Know?
One of the more ancient breeds in existence, Shih Tzus are believed to have been bred by Tibetan lamas to be a tiny replica of a lion, which is associated with Buddhist mythology.
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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

How to Stop a Dachshund Puppy From Biting

How to Stop a Dachshund Puppy From Biting
  Dachshunds were bred to track and kill pests. They had to be able to work unaided, be courageous and intelligent in order to chase down and grab hold of their prey. Today we can still glimpse these traits in Dachshunds who bark at other dogs or people, or who become aggressive. Dachshunds need to be taught at a young age to minimize problems like these associated with their breed nature. The first time you set eyes on any kind of dominance or aggression in your Dachshund puppy, especially biting, you have to act.
  When a Dachshund is a puppy they look cute and really don’t do much damage when chewing and biting. Many people think that this is OK, or even funny, but it isn’t. What they don't recognize is that these little nips are shows of dominance that may develop to direct aggression later in life. Left unaddressed your Dachshund puppy will grow up thinking that it is acceptable to chew on anything they want, causing hundreds, even thousands of dollars of damage to your expensive furniture, floors , shoes and your hands. The end conclusion is that dogs end up being taken to a shelter or, even worse, being euthanized. 
  It’s vital to learn how to stop your Dachshund biting at the puppy stage.  A lot of people think it’s okay to let a Dachshund puppy get away with biting as it seems harmless and just a bit of fun.  However this is not the case at all.  In fact your little Dachshund puppy is biting as a form of dominance because they are trying to become the leader of your pack .  Really as their owner you should be the leader – not your Dachshund.  So if you continue to let your Dachshund puppy bite, it can lead to very bad behavioural problems in the future.

Begin at a Young Age 

  Once you are searching for a Dachshund puppy ask the breeder to show you a litter. Observe the puppies playing and experimenting with behaviors and see how they learn through pointers from their litter mates. With puppy biting watch how if one puppy nips another, the one who was nipped will most likely bite back. The puppy who bit first quickly learns that when they bite, someone bites back, and the behavior soon stops. 
  When you bring your Dachshund puppy home you have to be consistent and not permit the biting restart. Begin training immediately that you spot your Dachshund puppy biting. In young puppies the biting you see is still play biting, trying out behaviors to observe which are alright and which are not. Never strike any Dachshund, in particular not a young puppy. They are still in their socialization and learning stage and will not appreciate what has happened. Dachshunds upset at an early age are more likely to develop issues with aggression when they age. 
  Consistency and even handedness are the keys when stopping Dachshund puppy biting, and in fact when training Dachshunds at all. Dachshunds react most favorably to positive training methods, particularly if they believe they are in charge! Again, consistency is vital. Be sure to give a reward  for positive/sought after behaviors and discourage unwanted behaviors. All family members have to know how to train your Dachshund so they are providing the same, constant information and rewards. Change your interactions with your Dachshund so you are not inadvertently reinforcing bad behavior. For example, with Dachshund puppy biting do not play tug of war or wrestle with them. Dachshunds were designed to be hunters and will probably notice a tug toy as prey. Don't be surprised to hear them growling and spot them biting at the toy, and you, if you play tug!

Aged One Year
  If you did not stop your Dachshund from biting as a puppy then they may still continue to bite as they reach one year of age.  If this is the case, then it’s really important you learn how to stop your Dachshund from biting at this point in their lives.
  A good place to start is to stop playing games that encourage biting such as tug of war and play fighting.

   It’s also vital that you have set rules for your Dachshund so that they realise that you are the leader of the pack, not them.  If you show your leadership position, then your Dachshund will be less likely to bite.


How to Stop a Dachshund Puppy from Biting 
  When your Dachshund puppy nips you is your first thought to spank them? If so, think again, this is not the correct action to take. The right thing to do is to demonstrate to them biting is not okay. Tell them "No" in a firm tone, or make a loud yelp . Present your Dachshund one of their own toys to play with, praising them when they start to chew it.

  When you are consistent using this system you will become aware of your Dachshund puppy quickly learns that biting you is not acceptable, but chewing their toys is. This method will work with Dachshunds of all ages, although it may be harder on adults who have not been trained or taught to not bite. 

Older Dachshund’s and Biting
  If you were unable to stop your Dachshund from biting at the puppy stage or as they reached one year of age then they have probably continued biting as they got older.  This is most likely because your Dachshund thinks they are the leader of your pack.

  At this stage of your Dachshund’s life it will be much harder to stop them from biting.  But it’s really important you still do take the steps and learn how to stop your Dachshund from biting for the safety of those around you.  The best thing to do at this point is to seek the help of a professional dog trainer.  They are the experts in situations like this and will be help you get your Dachshund’s biting under control.


  If your Dachshund is more aggressive than just giving the occasional nip or gentle bite you have to go to puppy or dog training classes or get the advice of a veterinary behaviorist. A training class will give you professional assistance in stopping your Dachshund puppy biting and will also offer an opportunity for socialization with other dogs and people, something that is very important for Dachshunds.

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