Thursday, July 12, 2018

How to Secure a Dog Door from Intruders

Although a dog door is beneficial for the movement of your pets, it can also be a source of burglary and theft. A big doggy door can be a convenient way for thieves to enter your house.

Poppy 1991-2006
Just the right size to fit your dog...

Even if the burglars can’t fit through the pet door, it can let them open the main door of your house. However, the good news is that you can take some preventive measures to limit intruders from breaking into your place.

Fortunately, the manufacturers of these doors recognize the numerous potential risks associated with a dog door. So, let’s explore how you can prevent your dog door from becoming a source of liability.

Do Not Use a Door to Install a Doggy Door

If it is possible, you can try installing the dog door in a wall instead of in a door. This move will help in limiting the intruders from reaching a door’s interior lock.

Moreover don’t opt for a large dog door. Just choose the smallest size possible that easily fits your pet. In this way, it will become even more difficult for the burglar to enter your house.

Installing Advanced Dog Doors

Use technology to gain an upper hand on intruders by installing dog doors with electronic locks. An RFID chip can be installed on your animal’s collar to open the pet door’s lock.

The doggy door will only unlock when your pet approaches. It will stay locked in case someone (an intruder) does not have RFID access.

Although these types of door flaps are more expensive than normal ones, they can prevent theft which can cost you a larger amount of money.

A Security Alarm

Another way of using technology to your advantage is by getting a security alarm for your dog door. The alarm will sound when the weight sensors trip due to an unusual pressure on these sensors.

First, weight your dog and then set a limit for the weight sensors to trip and sound the alarm. This method is also effective for keeping out other stray animals from entering in your house.

Security Cameras

Security cameras have always been a good way of identifying thieves even after they have escaped. Moreover, they also make the burglars think twice before entering your house as they know they are being watched!

You can also make use of fake security cameras to trick the intruders into thinking that they can be caught due to the footage. These types of devices are similar in shape and size of actual cameras but they are just dummy objects.

cctv


No one would know that you are using fake cameras unless you tell them about it. So, make sure that you don’t inform anyone about your clever trick.

By making use of these precautionary measures you can keep even the most dedicated burglar out of your house.

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Friday, May 18, 2018

How to go camping with your dog (a guest post)

Photo by Heather Mount on Unsplash
Dogs are friendly, energetic animals that love nothing more than the call of the wilderness. Much like us humans, they enjoy being around nature (some dogs more than others, such as the Blue Nose Pitbull), jumping and running around, enjoying the freedom a forest or a waterfall gives you. This is why going outside the city for a while is great, not only for your furry best friend, but for yourself as well. It helps you connect with nature, bond with your dog, and get rid of daily life’s stress.

But, before picking up your camping gear and your dog and going on a great adventure, there are some things that you need to know first. They mostly have to do with your dog’s safety and well-being, so keep on reading to know more!

Photo by Savs on Unsplash

1.    Assess your dog’s personality

In the end, some dogs are just not made for camping. They’re either not great in the outdoors or are too aggressive to be around other pets and children. So, before going on a camping vacation with your best friend, make a honest assessment of his personality, and decide for yourself if camping suits him!

2.    Look for dog-friendly campsites

Not all campsites welcome dogs (even though they should, honestly), so make sure to do your research first before choosing a place. There is nothing worse than arriving to the site you’ve chosen and spotting a giant “No dogs allowed” sign at the entrance. So, do your homework, and look around camping forums to know where to go. 

Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash
BringFido is a website where you can research dog-friendly campsites all around the world. Knowledge is only one click away, so make sure to use it!

3.    Make sure your dog is trained correctly

You might think your dog is well-trained, but is he “camp-trained”? This might come as a surprise, but just because your pooch is behaving at home, it does not mean he will do the same as soon as you arrive to the wilderness. Dogs are curious creatures, and yours will want to go around and discover his surroundings. They will go out of their way to satisfy their curiosity, which is why your dog should know campsite etiquette.

Your dog should be able to come as soon as you call him, either using his name or a dog whistle, and that, even if there are distractions around. The best place to train him to do that is at the dog park. In the end, when it comes to training your dog on campsite etiquette, the best thing is positive reinforcement. If you make your dog actually want to listen to you, then you’ve made it all!

4.    Take him to the vet before your trip

Taking a short trip to the vet never hurts, especially before a camping trip. Your best friend’s doctor will let you know if there are any special precautions you would have to take and will make sure that all your dog’s vaccines are up to date. The veterinarian can also help you make a list of what to take in your pet’s first aid kit instead of emergencies, which takes us to the next point.

5.    Always be ready for emergencies

You can do that by making a card that has important information on it, such as your address, your dog’s health history etc… You will also need to make sure that your dog’s tags are up to date, as well as his microchip. And finally, don’t forget to purchase a pet’s first aid kit, or make your own.

6.    Choose the right water and food bowls

Collapsible bowls are all the rage right now, and it’s understandable why. They’re practical, light, and easy to use. So, make sure to bring a couple for your dog’s food and water. Carrying them won’t be a problem, as they tend not to be heavy at all. Have some water on you at all time as well, since dogs need to be hydrated frequently, especially if you’re camping on hot summer days.

7.    Finally, don’t forget to have fun

Photo by Wyatt Ryan on Unsplash
Whether you’re the proud parent of a Great Dane or of a Husky Lab mix, camping with your dog will not always be an easy task, but it will be an enjoyable one. So, make sure to have a blast during your camping trip, and always take care of your dog!


Writer’s photo


Writer’s bio:

Hi, I'm Houda, a fulltime writer, traveler, and self-proclaimed dog person. I also make lame jokes, write poetry, and love eating weird food in faraway countries. Did I mention that I was a dog person? Yeah, give me all the puppies please.

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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Be an Animal's Lifeline (a Special Guest Post)

Would you like to have a fuzzy, funny Chihuahua to sit in your lap and look at you with adoring eyes? Or maybe you're a cat person who wants to dangle a bit of yarn for a frisky Maine coon cat. Dogs and cats are both marvelous animals with a lot of love to give. If you would like to nurture a deserving animal, please adopt one from your local animal shelter.

Because shelter animals are well behaved

It's rarely ever that a dog or cat is ever given to a shelter because something was "wrong" with it. Sometimes, an owner might request that a pet be re-homed due to a change in living conditions, illness in the family or sudden change in the budget. At any rate, it doesn't matter why the animal is in a shelter. It's never their fault. There's still a lot of love in these beautiful animals. The shelter volunteers will work on an individual level with the new animals to learn what difficulties they have, if any, and figure out the best solutions.

Because you don't want to support mills

The mills that breed purebred dogs and cats care more about lining their pockets than lining their cages, resulting in abused, unsociable animals and unhealthy puppies and kittens. Please don't support these reprobates. Adopting is not only the most merciful choice, it's less expensive. It's a common misconception that purebreds are superior to mixed-breeds. The truth is, cats and dogs of mixed heritage tend to be hardier and healthier than purebreds. These hybrids have the best of every breed they're related to!

Because shelter animals are healthy

You can know this for sure; cats and dogs are healthier in shelters than they'd be on the street! The primary thing a shelter does for an animal they've taken responsibility for is to screen for health problems and do what must be done to cure the ailment. The cats and dogs at these shelters receive round the clock veterinary care plus volunteers to make sure they're free of parasites, groomed well and socialized to get along with people. Many shelters will provide assistance and information as a public service. What they want is a healthy animal in a happy home.

Because there's just so many of them

One of the best things about being a pet owner is watching them grow from a minute puppy or kitten and training them yourself. If you want this then shelters are not exactly short on puppies and kittens. If left to breed freely, one cat and her offspring could produce 420,000 kittens in seven years! A dog and her offspring likewise could have 67,000 puppies in six years! However, realize that senior animals need homes too. If you'd prefer a pet who's already been trained and is ready to enjoy the golden years with you, maybe the older dog is best.

If you think you need more reasons, please take a few minutes to read the following infographic.

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Friday, December 8, 2017

7 Top Tips to Improve Your Dog’s Diet

Your dog’s diet isn’t something that should be taken lightly. Just in a similar way that you wouldn’t feed yourself, below-par, substandard food, you should ensure that your dog also consumes only the best.

The biggest contributing factors to a dog’s health and welling are exercise, mental health and you guessed it, diet.

Dinner for One

Your dog’s eating habits can have a very real impact on not only their present health, but also the longevity of their life.

Below are my top tips to follow to make sure your canine companion gets all the nutrients they need to live a long and happy life:

Quality over Brand

Each and every time you turn on the television or open a magazine there’s a good chance that you’ll see an advert for [insert generic dog food brand here]. These companies that mass produce dog food, package them in shiny, colourful foil and relentlessly shove them under your nose spend millions on branding and advertising each year. However, it may be worth them spending some more time on creating a product that’s better for your dog.

Many well know dog food brands include a large amount of grain within their product. This grain is not good for your dog as their digestive system can often struggle to break it down.

By switching to a quality grain free dog food that contains a higher meat content your pup will be avoid many digestive issues.

Fresh Foods

Introducing fresh foods such as fruit and vegetables to your dog’s diet will provide your dog with lots of live enzymes that will contribute to better overall health.

Refined Raspberry 

Fresh fruit and vegetables are also rich in fibre will help to conquer any of your dog’s digestive issues.

Avoid Cooked Meats

We’ve all been known to pop a little bit of our leftovers/extra dinner into the dog’s bowl; and whilst this won’t do much real harm, these foods would be far more beneficial to them if they weren’t cooked.

Organic is Best

This seems obvious, but organic fruit and veg is no doubt more beneficial for you dog than food that is pumped full of preservatives. Even though many non-organic foods are labelled fit for consumption, studies do indicate that they aren’t particularly safe.

Gluten is a no no
A lot of generic dried pet food contain gluten. This gluten is included in the food to stop lower class fats from going off and becoming rancid.

Somebody Tooted!

Gluten can be very harmful to your dog’s liver and kidneys as it forces waste products to be retained rather than excreted. On top of this, gluten is one of the main reasons that your dogs ‘passing of wind’ can often kick up such a stench – which is no good for anybody.

No Over Feeding

We’re guilty of over feeding our pups every now and again, but we really shouldn’t. Over feeding your dog will of course bring on weight gain, and as they grow older (and less active) this weight gain will accelerate leading to muscle and joint problems.

If you dog is overweight then feed him/her earlier in the day. This will give them more time to burn it off walking etc. Similarly, if your dog is in a position where they need to gain a little weight, then increase the amount of feeds per day, and feed them before bed time – this means they won’t have the chance to burn off the food.

Is your tap water good enough?

One thing that is rarely considered when it comes to dog’s diets is the quality of water that they take on. In my experience, the vast majority just fill their dog’s water bowl up with tap water; and there’s nothing wrong with that.

so,...iT is a doG

However, tap water contains a number of chemicals that aren’t great for dogs. So, it’s a good idea to either filter your dog’s water before filling up their bowl, or even buy in some quality bottled water for your dog. Trust me, they’ll thank you for it.
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Tuesday, November 28, 2017

3 Tips for Dog Owners Looking to Groom Their Pet at Home (Guest Post)

Visiting professional groomers is a luxury. Although we love spoiling our canine friends and they do deserve certain indulgences, regular visits to professional grooming studios can be quite expensive. By grooming your dog at home you can increase the period between two professional grooming treatments. Or you can even skip going to salons and do everything yourself.

Oreo Lhasa
Oreo doesn't look happy at all...
Remember that dogs of all breeds need regular grooming. The only difference between different breeds is the time that needs to spent on doing so – from once every few weeks to a few hours a week.

To make things easier, we have compiled a list of 3 simple tips for DIY dog grooming. If you follow these simple steps, grooming your dog at home can be quite an easy process but it will still take a little bit of practice and patience.

1. Educate yourself and your dog

It is advisable to research your dog’s breed and its coat type in order to learn what to expect of the grooming session and which tools you will need.

Different coat types require different tools. If you feel confused, it might be a good idea to schedule an appointment at a professional groomer for a one-time consultation. During the consultation, the professional groomer can teach you how to keep the grooming sessions short and pleasant.

This dog is treated better than me.

You can read every blog and article available online and even purchase the best grooming equipment available on the market, but if your dog does not want to be handled, the grooming session is doomed.

To avoid such situations, train your dog to enjoy grooming during its puppyhood. Use positive reinforcement techniques, like treats and praises, to associate the grooming session with positive experience.

2. Brushing and bathing

It is not advised to bath your dog without brushing it first. Brushing or combing, helps mechanically remove the dirt from your dog’s coat and it also unclogs tangled hairs. If you find a mat that cannot be untangled do not hesitate to cut it out.

When brushing your dog at home, make sure to brush your entire dog. It is true that certain areas like faces, tails and legs can be trickier, but they need to be groomed too.

Even in short haired breeds it is important to brush all areas, because brushing increases the blood circulation in the skin, thus promoting healthy skin, for growth and proper skin oil production.

Once properly brushed, you can proceed to bathing your dog. Start by wetting the coat thoroughly all the way to the skin with lukewarm water.

Bathtub 1

When the dog is wet enough, apply the shampoo and let it stay for a while. Then rinse your dog thoroughly and remove the excess water with towel. You can either leave your dog to dry naturally or you can use hair dryer. When bathing your dog, never forget to clean its eyes, ears and teeth and clip its nails.

Since frequent bathing disrupts the natural balance of the microorganisms on your dog’s skin and leads to skin and coat issues, try to minimize the number of baths and bath your dog only when it is too dirty and before trimming its coat.

3. Always use appropriate tools

The first rule to DIY dog grooming is to never use human clippers. Human clippers have only one length of blade and since that length is often too short for dogs, it can cause skin burns.

Human clippers also produce much more heat and are less powerful when compared to dog clippers. If you plan on grooming your dog at home on a regular basis, it is of paramount importance to obtain a good dog clipper. High quality dog clippers cost around $100 and above, but at the end you get what you pay for. Dog clippers are an investment that pays off.

It is important to remember that certain areas of your dog’s body are thinner and those areas should be clipped with extra care and caution.

These areas include the face, eyes, ear flaps and edges, armpits, belly, underside of the neck, sanitary areas, toes and tendons on legs. Improper handling of these areas causes the skin to pull up quickly and catches into the grooming tools, thus causing bruising and cutting.

dog at the groomer having nails clipped

The second most important tool is the scissors. There are many types of scissors and they all serve different purpose. For example thinning scissors are used for extremely thick coats that need to be thinned out; curved scissors are used to trim and shape the fur around the contour of the dog’s body; rounded tipped safety scissors are used for cutting the hairs in delicate areas. The straight scissors are the most universal tool and can be used on most coat types.

Last but not least, think about getting a dog grooming table. Placing your dog on a table makes it easier to restrain it and it is also easier on your back.

Chooey's Note: The pack would like to thank a Miss Jenny for this guest post contribution because Haopee is currently "preoccupied" and too busy to tend for the blog.
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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Dogs and Holiday Traditions, What Say You?

Speaking of Holidays... I know I'm supposed to talk about the Christmas Season, but I'm sure it'll be perfectly fine to just dabble a bit on the past.

The Lenten Season begins on the first Wednesday of March and ends on Easter Sunday. In reality, bunnies don't poop jellybeans, nor do they leave chicken eggs behind. If they did, they'd probably have battle scars from battling for that egg. And I think with the current taxes and remittances to our social security system, it'll be hard for the rabbits to buy paint brushes because they have to take care of baby bunnies and pay for food.

Pug St. Patrick's Day Diva
No Easter Bunnies here, just one St. Patrick's pug!

Kidding aside, for devout catholics, the Lenten season means no pork, beef, or meat. Within this period, our diet is limited to all kinds of fish dishes and vegetables. Fortunately, these traditions do not affect Chooey and the pack.  So it's no surprise that after eating, they end up plopping on the floor and sleeping like there's no tomorrow. You'd think they were doormat for dogs.

Just out of curiosity, do you guys have a tradition like Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, and St. Patrick's Day? If so, which of these do your dogs celebrate with you?

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