Tag Archives: dogs
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The Princess and the Gladiator

28 Jul

The Princess and the Gladiator

A little while back i paid cartoon rebels to make me a cartoon of Maya and Max. This is what they came up with!

I think it captured their personality and they look awesome!

I know this is only a small post, but i will try to post again tonight if i have time after work, sorting the dogs etc.

Happy blogging!

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A mini training session

24 Jul

Most days i like to spend a few minutes like this with the dogs practicing some of their little “tricks”.

The beach can be fun!

17 Jul

At 6 months old, so far Max hasn’t been keen on the beach, and even less keen on swimming! In fact, he hates getting wet. Until today!

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First it all started with me getting my feet with. Just as a did with Maya, i took the dogs to the beach when it was calm and warm, took off my shoes and socks and in i went. It never takes long before they follow me and tip toe (or paw) into the sea towards me.

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Ok, so he wasn’t sure at first and just hovered around where it was shallow. Each time a wave came he tensed or ran back.

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Maya on the other hand, already knows how to swim and loves it! She loves it even more when she has a friend to swim with and seemed to be really happy that i joined her in the sea! Something i’ve not really done properly since she was a tiny pup. She quite literally swam circles around me!Image

So, what was it that eventually got Max to get right in the water and go for his first real swim? Seagulls!

Both of my dogs love chasing seagulls along the beach, and little Max never gives up on a chase, so in he went!

Of course, Maya was there to make sure he was ok!

Summer Safety

30 Jun

 

 

I think i have made this post before, or something similar, but after a day or so of the British summer arrival (yes, today in Suffolk it was HOT, and i was at work) i thought it made sense to make another summer safety post.

Summer time is great for us, and our dogs. Its the time when we most look forward to getting out and about with our dogs and having some fun in the sun, but we need to remember that dog’s dont handle the heat in quite the same way as us, and we need to make sure that we keep them happy, comfortable and safe.

 

Would you want to wear a fur coat in the summer?

Fur can be problematic when its hot. Whilst it does provide some protection from the sun, it also prevents heat from escaping and therefore can be a factor in overheating. Keeping your dogs coat short can help reduce the risk of overheating, but you must be aware that too short can also cause the risk of sunburn.

 

 

Dog’s die in hot cars

We’ve all seen the adverts and the posters, but every year people make the same mistake. Studies have shown that within the space of 30 minutes, the temperature in a car can become lethal (even if the outside temperature feels fairly cool). Cracking the windows really doesn’t do much in the way of stopping the temperature from rising.

Think of it this way? Would you leave a child alone in a hot car? Probably not. Statistics also suggest that approximately 30 children die in parked cars each year. That’s bad, isn’t it? Dog’s overheat more quickly than children, they are also left in cars more frequently.

Hundreds of dogs die in hot cars every year.

 

 

Emergency prepared

When you are out for a drive or heading somewhere, make sure you back an emergency kit. Some water is key to help prevent your dog from getting too hot. You could also bring items such as a battery powered fan to help keep your dog cool if the air con breaks.

 

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Not the time for exercise

When you are preparing taking your dog out for a run or even a walk, bear in mind the temperature. Exercise should be done at the coolest times of day, first thing in the morning and at night. Walking in places where there are areas for him to have a dip in cool water is also a good idea. Remember the drinking water! Be aware of walking on hot tarmac as well. We’ve all stood on the pavement in bare feet and had to hop around because our feet got hot. Dog’s paws are sensitive, and of course very important!

 

 

Home comforts

Make sure that your dog has somewhere in the shade where they can rest. The garden can get pretty hot and if they don’t have any shade, they have nowhere to cool off. Paddling pools are a great investment as it gives them somewhere to cool off as well as a large supply of water they can drink from. A breeze is great for keeping them cool. This can be accomplished outdoors or inside the house by aiming a fan at them. Of course, you need to be aware of the electrical parts etc.

 

 

The lobster look

Like us humans, some dogs worship the sun. My Maya is a great example of a dog who will absolutely refuse to lie anywhere but in the sunshine until she absolutely has to (or is forced to) move. Like people, dogs (especially those with light skin) can get sunburn and melanoma. Using some sunblock helps prevent this (especially on the belly and top of his nose).

 

 

Sink or swim

Swimming is a great way for your dog to have fun and to cool off, but beware, not all dogs can swim! Some breeds really are not able to swim, for example bulldogs and pekingese. Even those who are good swimmers could have issues in pools where they cannot find an exit route, or in the sea where there are strange currents.

Chemicals in the water is something else you need to be aware of. Chlorine for example can irritate the dogs skin and cause stomach problems.

 

 

Cooling a hot dog

If your dog becomes too hot, you need to cool them off slowly and gradually by placing him in cool water or draping a wet towel around him. They need plenty of water to drink to re-hydrate, but if possible try not to let them gulp it down too quickly.

Try to cool him until his temperature reaches about 39 degrees Celsius as it will continue decreasing from there. ALWAYS get your dog to a vet if he has become overheated as even those who appear to have recovered can have delayed and deadly effects later.

 

 

Barbecue season

Keep an eye on your dog if he is around a barbecue or camp fire. It isn’t stealing the sausages that is the problem, but stealing hot sticks or burning themselves. Lighter fluid is a poison, so keep that out of reach.

 

links

http://www.petside.com/article/how-keep-your-dog-safe-summer

http://www.cesarsway.com/dog-care/dog-health/How-to-Keep-Your-Dog-Safe-In-the-Summer

Stormy sky, rough sea, sandy beach

23 Jun

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Oh, and two dogs.

It’s just a dog

19 Jun

“From time to time, people tell me, “lighten up, it’s just a dog”, or, “that’s a lot of money for just a dog”.

They don’t understand the distance traveled, the time spent, or the costs involved for “just a dog”.

Some of my proudest moments have come about with “just a dog”. Many hours have passed and my only company was “just a dog”, but I did not once feel slighted. Some of my saddest moments have been brought about by “just a dog” and in those days of darkness, the gentle touch of “just a dog” gave me comfort and reason to overcome the day.

If you, too, think it’s “just a dog”, then you will probably understand phases like “just a friend”, “just a sunrise”, or “just a promise”.

“Just a dog” brings into my life the very essence of friendship, trust, and pure unbridled joy. “Just a dog” brings out the compassion and patience that makes me a better person. Because of “just a dog” I will rise early, take long walks and look longingly to the future. So for me and folks like me, it’s not “just a dog” but an embodiment of all the hopes and dreams of the future, the fond memories of the past, and the pure joy of the moment. “Just a dog” brings out what’s good in me and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day. I hope that someday they can understand that it’s not “just a dog” but the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being “just a human.”

So the next time you hear the phrase “just a dog”, just smile, because they “just don’t understand”.”

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Tail docking

5 Jun

There is always a lot of debate regarding docking the tail of a dog, something that i myself have spent a fair amount of time considering. There is always the argument that “the dog was born with his tail, why dock it” but the same could be said for human children who are circumcised, they were born with it, why remove it. I cant tell you why, in most circumstances, it is a health a safety issue. But first, back to basics.

What is tail docking?

Docking is the surgical removal of a portion (large or small) of the dogs tail.

This being said, i will point out here that there are often cases of the breeders (poor ones) who carry out this procedure at home, by breaking the tail or using an elastic band to cut off the circulation. I’m sure we can all agree that this procedure is not something positive.

The dog’s trust state “When performed on young puppies the procedure is generally done without anaesthetic and there is good scientific evidence to show that docking causes severe and long lasting pain.”.

     

So, why do it?

Origionally, many breeds often had their tails docked for aesthetic reasons. For example, the doberman is/ or was seen to look sleeker and more attractive which its short stumpy docked tail than its naturally long slim tail.

1. Maintaining breed standards:

Some breeds have been docked for many generations, and as such their genetic make up has been altered. Id left undocked, it is unlikely that the “best” dogs would carry good, healthy and strong tails.

2. Hygiene:

Some dogs with long, thick hair such as the English Sheepdog have their tails docked to help avoid serious hygiene related problems from the hair around the base of the tail becoming matted and dirty by faeces.

3. To avoid injury and damage:

Many breeds of working dogs have always had their tail dock in order to avoid them becoming inured whilst working. They can easily tear and become hard to treat when the animal races through thick vegetation. Working terriers often had their tails docked for similar reasons, with the addition of needed to be maneuverable in a confined space.

Other breeds have particularly high tail action and as such suffer injuries such as breaks, even in the home. I know of a labrador who unfortunately has had his tail docked twice, just because he has broken it on a number of occasions within his home.

So, why not?

I have already given you the argument that they were born with tails, so they need them.

Then there is the suggestion that docking the tail is traumatic and causes a severe amount of pain. This being said, if it is carried out correctly, it shouldn’t be too much of an issue (not in the long run at least).

Finally, there is the communication argument. Again, referencing the dogs trust Dogs use their tails as a means of communication and so docking deprives them of some of the body language they need to communicate with other dogs”. Whilst it is true that dogs do use their tails to communicate, you could argue “have you ever seen a stumpy tailed dog not be able to communicate with others?” There is a huge amount of body language involved in communication.

The law:

Laws regarding tail docking vary world wide, but they are also changing, with many countries opting for tail docking to be illegal. For example, the laws vary within the UK!

Scotland – Complete ban except when necessary following injury/disease.

Northern Ireland – Was legal providing it is carried out by a certified vet but is now similar to that of England and Wales.

England and Wales – Banned except for certain working dogs. (since april 2007)

In the cases where docking has been carried out, a certificate should be provided by the vet to prove that it was done properly and legally. If you are purchasing a puppy with a docked tail, you need to ensure that you are given its certificate.

My opinion:

Honestly, i’m still unsure. If the tail is docked purely for aesthetic reasons, i disagree completely. But, if it is for the long term benefit of the dog, i wonder if it is something worth considering (albeit very carefully).

When i bought Max home, he had already had a small part (about 1/4) of his tail docked, and he gets on fine. Would i have had it done myself? Probably not.

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http://www.dogstrust.org.uk/az/d/docking/#.UaoUKUCkpOw

http://www.cdb.org/case4dock.htm#_cruel