White Dog Breeds

7 Dec 2014 | Filed in Dog Breeds

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If you don’t mind putting away your dark wardrobe, you can choose a white canine in any size. While some breeds have a variety of permissible colors in their conformation standards, at least 14 dog breeds are strictly white, with no spots accepted, according to standard.

Small White Breeds

Small white dogs include the Maltese and bichon frise, both bred for companionship. A less common breed, the Bolognese, resembles the bichon frise. The West Highland white terrier sports the curiosity and drive of the terrier. The Coton de Tulear is named for his cottony white coat. All of these dogs mature at under 15 inches in height.

Medium-Size White Dogs

Originally trained as circus performers, the American Eskimo comes in toy, miniature and standard sizes. The standard size is actually a medium-size dog, between 15 and 19 inches in height. This smart, foxlike dog excels in agility and other canine competitions.

Large White Dogs

Several large white dogs, those maturing over 19 inches tall, originated as sheep guardians. They tend to blend in with the flock. These include the Great Pyrenees, Turkish Akbash, Slovenský Čuvač, Owczarek Podhalansk, maremma, kuvasz and komondor. Sled-pulling was the original purpose of the Samoyed, a northern breed.

Do Dogs Remember Their Previous Owners?

5 Dec 2014 | Filed in Dog Adopted

Dogs may, indeed, remember previous owners.
Each year, millions of dogs enter shelters where many of them, if they’re lucky, get adopted by new owners. Likewise, every year outside of shelters, many dogs get handed down and passed along to new owners, whether because of hardship or inconvenience to the owner. New owners may wonder whether their adopted dogs remember previous owners, and the answer is: It depends on the dog, but anecdotal evidence seems to suggest they do.Have a question? Get an answer from a Vet now!

Argos, the Great Dog Who Remembered

Anecdotal evidence supports the idea that dogs do remember previous owners. Argos, as told in Homer’s classic, The Odyssey, waits 20 years for his master, Odysseus, to return finally from his worldly travels. As soon as the dog recognizes his long-lost master, he has strength only to drop his ears and wag his tail, and then dies. True, it’s a sad story, but it has become a strong metaphor for the faithfulness of dogs.

The Concept of Time & Remembering

Patricia McConnell, PhD, and author of several books about dog behavior, says it seems reasonable that dogs have some sense of time. As proof, she cites a study published in Applied Animal Behavior Science that found that the longer dogs are left alone, the more intense they greet their owners. So time — even 20 years in the case of Argos! — doesn’t seem to affect a dog’s memory of relationships, past and present.

Dog vs. Human Memory

Humans, unlike dogs, have a concept of time known as “episodic memory,” using artificial measures of time, like seconds, minutes, and hours, to distinguish events. Also, we tend to remember when something happened by relating it to other events. Dogs, on the other hand, can tell how much time has passed only since the event happened. Still, that doesn’t mean dogs can’t remember the past, or people from the past.

Survival, Fear & Trust: Reasons to Remember

Dogs remember for other reasons, too. It’s commonly believed they remember what they need to in order to survive, or because of fear. Dogs remember past unpleasant or dangerous circumstances to avoid having similar situations in the future. Finally, a type of survival memory is connected to remembering friends, owners, and those people with whom dogs generally feel safe and can trust. Therefore, if a previous owner was kind, the dog may well remember him.

America’s Biggest Free Pet Adoption Event

3 Dec 2014 | Filed in Dog News

An adoption event funded by Maddie’s Fund® and set for June 1-2 will be the first of its kind in the nation, offering free adoptions of an estimated 5,000 dogs and cats in eight communities across the U.S.

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more than 200 shelters and rescue groups will participate in the adoption event, which will place thousands of pets into their forever homes.

The participating metro areas are:

New York City

Washoe County, Nevada

Dane County, Wisc.

Alachua County, Fla.

Santa Clara County, Calif.

Alameda County, Calif.

Contra Costa County, Calif.

San Francisco County, Calif.

The goal of Maddie’s® Pet Adoption Days is to give all healthy, senior and treatable shelter dogs and cats a second chance. As in past years when the event has been held in the San Francisco Bay area, adoptions of dogs and cats will be free to qualified adopters. In return, Maddie’s Fund has set aside $4 million so that it can give each shelter or rescue group $500 – $2,000 per adoption.

Maddie’s® Pet Adoption Days is being held to increase awareness of shelter animals and their need for loving homes, and to shed light on the tireless efforts of the shelters and rescue organizations across the country that work so hard to save the lives of countless dogs and cats every day. The adoption event honors the memory of the foundation’s namesake, a Miniature Schnauzer named Maddie. To learn more about the event visit:Adopt.maddiesfund.org

Maddie’s Fund will pay organizations $500 per regular adoption, $1,000 for each adoption involving a dog or cat who is seven years of age or older or who has been treated for one or more medical conditions and $2,000 for each adoption involving a dog or cat who is seven years of age or older and who has been treated for one or more medical conditions.

Maddie’s Fund® is a family foundation endowed by the founder of Workday® and PeopleSoft, Dave Duffield and his wife, Cheryl. The goal of Maddie’s Fund is to achieve no-kill nation by providing solutions to the most challenging issues facing the animal welfare community. Maddie’s Fund is named after the family’s beloved Miniature Schnauzer who passed away in 1997.

Caption: Dave Duffield, founder of Maddie’s Fund, has donated more than $300 million to animal rescue.

Dog Training Toys

29 Nov 2014 | Filed in Dog Training

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Play can be an efficient way to train your dog by teaching important skills like self-control, patience and motor control. Toys provide mental stimulation, exercise and reward. Combining play and training results in fun ways to work with your dog within the context of daily life.

Food Puzzles

Mental stimulation provides exercise, relief from boredom and an outlet for natural behaviors like chewing and hunting. Food puzzles range from basic toys stuffed with kibble or canned food to more advanced toys that require problem solving to obtain the hidden food.

Tug and Fetch

Tug and fetch toys, like ropes and tennis balls, provide reward when teaching a dog self-control. While playing fetch or tug, ask your dog to sit or down. When he responds correctly, say “yes” and toss the ball or invite him to reengage in tug. By using play as a reward, your dog learns that self-control is a valuable skill to practice.

Flirt Pole

A flirt pole looks like a large cat teaser. This toy provides exercise that teaches muscle control and balance. It can be used to teach a dog self-control and “chase” or “get it” on cue, as well as improve the “point” skill for hunting dogs. Allow the dog to reengage in chasing the toy for each successful self-control response.

How to Correct Dog Behavior Problems for Cheap

25 Nov 2014 | Filed in Dog Problems

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  If Rover is driving you crazy and destroying the house in the process, it might be time for some behavior lessons. While picking up the phone and calling a trainer might sound appealing, your budget might not allow for it. The good news? You can do all the training yourself for next to nothing, as long as you’re willing to invest the time and energy into it.

1Buy a dog training clicker. This is a small plastic device that sells for less than $10 online or at pet stores everywhere. A clicker is a tool for positive reinforcement. You simply carry it with you and when Rover does something you approve of, you click the device and then offer a reward. Soon Doggie will understand that certain actions make you happy and earn him a treat, and he will start repeating them more often.

2Use verbal cues along with the clicker. For example, say “sit” or “wait.” When Rover obeys, click and then reward the behavior. Teaching Doggie basic commands costs nothing — except for the cost of the treats — but it helps him understand you’re in charge.

3Socialize your dog. If you have a local dog park, this is a great free opportunity to teach your dog some social skills. Doggie not ready to go out into the world and meet others? Set up some play dates in a more controlled environment, such as a friend’s backyard or a quiet section of the beach. Once there, keep an eye on Doggie so you can correct him when he behaves inappropriately with another dog.

4Download an app for your tablet or smartphone. There are plenty of free or low cost — $2 or less — apps that guide you through a training program. Some have specific goals, such as helping you teach your dog commands, while others focus on behavior problems. Some apps allow you to keep track of your training progress so you know what you’re doing and where to go from there.

5Make your own pet deterrent by mixing one part fresh lemon or orange juice and three parts water. Or try mixing one part vinegar with five parts water. Add the mix to a spray bottle and spray furniture or other areas you want to keep doggie-free. You can also booby trap your kitchen counter by placing aluminum foil or pop cans right near the edge. Next time Doggie wants to jump up or steal something from the counter, he’ll create an avalanche of things — hopefully scaring him enough to deter him from trying again.

Is It Possible to Change a Dog’s Life When It Has Been Abused?

21 Nov 2014 | Filed in Dog Life Style

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Your local animal shelter is overrun with abused or neglected dogs. You constantly see requests from reputable rescue groups asking a caring person to adopt a pet with special needs. You feel yourself wanting to help one of these special dogs, yet you wonder if it’s too late to turn their lives around?

The Learning Curve

Dogs are amazingly forgiving. Patience is key, however, especially in the beginning of your relationship. When you first bring a dog with a history of abuse home, he might hide under or behind objects or back away from you. Loud noises tend to startle, and be mindful of quick hand gestures, which can make him instinctively cower or snap. Set up a bed for him in a room where you spend the majority of your time, but in a corner far enough away so he feels a safe distance. Some dogs feel more secure in a dog crate.

Professional Training

An accredited trainer or behaviorist can help set up both your household and training routines to help a dog who’s been abused. An experienced trainer also will be able to adapt typical training methods to meet the dog where he is and help you chart progress. Although the details of a dog’s past are often unclear, if you know whether he was hurt by a child or a particular gender this can be helpful information for a trainer, especially when attempting to socialize him in public areas. Most veterinarians have working relationships with behaviorists and can recommend someone who can help.

The Trust Factor

A person’s first instinct when approaching a scared dog is often to move forward at the dog’s level with a handful of treats. This is a mistake made from a place of love and compassion. When a scared dog is approached, his first instinct might be to run away, or to bark or lunge in an effort to keep the human from getting closer. Wait for him to come to you. Let him watch you put down food and water, but do not make eye contact and calmly go about your routine. Let him see you are not anxious about his presence. Ignore him as he gets to know you by sniffing. This may not happen the first day, but when he feels safe enough to sit near you, he’s saying he’s ready to trust again.

A Positive Future

A rough start in life does not mean a dog cannot recover and adapt to a loving home. He might always have behavior quirks, or react in certain situations (regular exercise, such as walks, can relieve anxiety as well as strength your relationship with your dog). Your dog’s personality and the circumstances of his abuse will dictate the obstacles you have to cross, and you might have to change certain routines. With patience and proper training, you can change the lives of most dogs who have been abused.

Pug Puppies & Their Health

17 Nov 2014 | Filed in Dog Health

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Pugs have a long and storied history, stemming back to Asia in 400 BC. Tibetan monasteries and royalty in Victorian England have owned these small, friendly dogs. Today, due to inbreeding and some of their physical characteristics, pugs face some definite health considerations.

Pugs

Pugs are small, thickset dogs with short faces and pop eyes. They come in colors from brown to black, mixed with white, and have smooth coats. Adult pugs stand at 10 to 14 inches and weigh up to 20 lbs. Their characteristic short faces and large eyes can lead to serious health issues.

Personalities

Pugs have very big, happy-go-lucky attitudes. They are loyal and loving to their families, and can be stubborn in their attachments. Pugs are sensitive, but get along well with other pets and children.

Medical Considerations

Pug dogs are genetically inclined to a couple of serious medical conditions. Pug dog encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain that strikes pugs, along with several other breeds. Pugs can be struck by hip dysplasia, back problems, enlargement of the heart, eye problems and liver shunts. Many of these issues are treatable only through surgery.

Physical Considerations

Pug dogs have very short faces and nasal cavities, which lead to respiratory issues and breathing problems. They are prone to coughing, sneezing, wheezing and colds. In hot weather, their inability to breathe properly can lead to overheating and heat stroke.

Treatments

Owners can protect their pug puppies by following certain guidelines in regard to the dog’s health. Because pugs are so prone to respiratory problems, owners should never smoke around their puppy. Cleaning products should be checked for dangerous chemicals, and pug puppies should be kept away from fresh-cut grass and particularly hot, humid weather.

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