Helpful hints for rehoming an older dog

Helpful hints for rehoming an older dog

A dog is a faithful friend that will love you until your dying day. While the bond between a dog and their owner is a beautiful thing, it can turn to tragedy when the owner either passes away or is no longer able to give their canine companion the care they need. These faithful friends (through no fault of their own) usually end up in animal shelters where they’re eschewed by many who are looking for a puppy or a younger dog. Hence, they face much greater risk of humane euthanasia than their younger counterparts. But older dogs can be equally wonderful companions and the difference you can make in caring for them in their later years really can’t be underestimated.

Pyoderma in Dogs - Symptoms and Treatment

Pyoderma in Dogs - Symptoms and Treatment

No owner wants their dog to develop a bacterial skin infection. However, Pyoderma often occurs at some point during a canine’s life. So, it’s important that all humans educate themselves about the symptoms and treatment process. Only then will individuals notice the warning signs early enough to limit discomfort for their animal. Most vets are well-trained in spotting bacterial skin infections. For that reason, many people discover the problem during a routine checkup. Still, the earlier people deal with the issue; the better. Use the information from this page to gain a better understanding.

Ways to Help Your Dog as They Get Older

Just like you, your dog changes in both mind and body as they get older. However, they're aging much faster than you are. So whether your dog is getting a bit older or entering their golden years or you've just adopted a senior dog, it's crucial to look out for any changes in how they may be different from one month to the next. Doing so will help you tailor care to your dog at every new life stage. Do you know ways to help your dog as they get older?

Proper Exercise

As your dog gets older, giving them proper exercise is a great way to help them. Maybe your dog doesn't want or need as much exercise as they once did. Perhaps they suffer from arthritis or hip dysplasia or other conditions that limit their movement. As your dog ages, you'll need to find a new balance of age-appropriate exercise, from walking to playing to innovative hydrotherapy, to keep their mind and body healthy with minimal pain.

Good Diet

As you dog gets older, keeping them at a good weight can become even more important. Maybe your dog is exercising less. Perhaps they have organ issues, joint pain or other conditions that stress their body in different ways. As your dog ages, you'll need to find a new balance of age-appropriate diet, from the best senior dog food to special supplements, to keep their appetite satisfied and their weight maintained.

Good Communication

As your dog gets older, ensuring you have good communication with them is even more key. Maybe your dog has problems with memory, mood, sight or sound. Perhaps they show other behavior changes that could be signs of normal aging or of serious health conditions. As your dog ages, you'll need to find a new balance of age-appropriate communication, from unique cues to more time together, to keep their soul lively and loved.

Proper Environment

When your dog is getting older, there are things you can do to help him feel more comfortable. For example, providing more soft places for him to lie down can be helpful. Some senior dogs can struggle with steps and stairs, so a ramp can help them to move up or down different levels. It can also be useful to have carpeting or rugs instead of slippery hard floors.

There are lots of ways you can help your dog as he ages. Increasing the frequency of your vet visits can help you understand what he needs.

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How to Protect Your Dog from Mosquito Bites

Summer's a great season for you to have fun with your dog, but it also comes with some health concerns for them. Mosquitos are a definite danger. Infectious diseases from mosquito bites require serious medical attention ranging from heartworm removal surgery to treatments for West Nile virus. So read on for our top tips to keep your dog bite-free and safe every summer. Do you know how to protect your dog from mosquito bites?

Avoid Human Repellents

Avoid human repellents when protecting your dog from mosquito bites. Insect repellents made for humans are fine to use on your skin but are extremely toxic to your dog. The main ingredient found in these repellents is DEET which can cause your dog to vomit and seizure. This means your dog shouldn't lick you if you've put on human insect repellents.

Avoid Stagnant Water

Avoid stagnant water when protecting your dog from mosquito bites. Mosquitos breed in life-giving water. So be vigilant in areas around your home where stagnant water tends to collect. This means keeping areas dry around air conditioning units, refreshing water in dog bowls several times a day and emptying excess water from planter bases.

Avoid Certain Times

Avoid certain times when protecting your dog from mosquito bites. Mosquitos are at their most active and likeliest to bite your dog around early dawn and late dusk when the sun isn't as harsh and there's more dew on the ground. This means taking your dog outdoors at other times but also not when the sun's too hot for them to be outside.

Use Dog Repellents

Use dog repellents when protecting your dog from mosquito bites. Insect repellents made for dogs are absolutely fine to use on your dog's skin. Some flea and tick repellents also work to repel mosquitos so read the fine print or consult others. This means looping in your trusted dog walker or pet sitter on dog insect repellents.

Use Natural Repellents

Use natural repellents when protecting your dog from mosquito bites. Insect repellents made from natural ingredients can often be used on both dog and human skin. Lemon eucalyptus oil is often used in these repellents to keep mosquitos at bay. This means you'll need to do research on natural insect repellents.

Summer is full of good times to spend with your dog, but it's also full of disease-bearing mosquitos. So follow this easy plan to keep mosquitos from biting your best friend.

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What to Do When Your Dog Has Canine Anorexia

Dogs are famous for their voracious appetite, and it's a joy for you to see your dog's tail wagging as you're preparing their next meal. So it's nerve-wracking when your dog doesn't feel like eating. Unlike the human term defining a mental health disorder, canine anorexia refers only to symptoms describing your dog's lack of interest in food, loss of appetite or refusal to eat. Do you know what to do when your dog has canine anorexia?

causes

While canine anorexia is worrisome, it’s important to focus on what's causing the problem. There are many reasons why your dog’s appetite may diminish or disappear. Some are more straightforward and simpler to remedy, and others are more complex and tougher to solve. However, once you've pinpointed possible causes, you can start finding solutions.

Common causes of canine anorexia include:

Environmental: Have there been any recent changes in your dog's life? A home move, a different food or routine, a household member's death or departure or the hire of a new dog walker or pet sitter can make your dog very anxious, depressed or stressed.

Gastrointestinal: Has your dog exhibited pica, the deliberate ingestion of non-food items, including plastics and trash, or eaten rotten food off the ground they weren't supposed to? These items can block, damage or unsettle your dog's digestive system.

Dental: Does your dog have any abscesses or cavities, broken, loose or misaligned teeth, mouth trauma or bleeding or inflamed gums due to periodontal diseaseDental difficulties make it especially uncomfortable for your dog to chew.

Treatment

If your dog has canine anorexia, it’s first key to know whether they show any interest in eating or don't want to eat at all. Do they make attempts to eat their meal and then slink away, or do they seem repelled by it? Try making the food you feed your dog more tempting by adding fresh meat or filtered water to it, warming it up in the microwave for 10 seconds, hand feeding it to them or offering them a different dog food.

Get your dog to the vet at that same time you're trying to understand what's causing their canine anorexia. Ordering blood work, an X-ray or an ultrasound for your dog may lead to their best treatment by revealing what's truly happening.

It's definitely troubling when your dog has canine anorexia. However, by observing them and working together with your vet, you can get your dog eating normally again soon.

 

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How to Look After Your Dog in the Summertime

When summertime is upon you, so is the ability to get outside with your dog and connect with them even more. If your dog loves to explore, enjoying the sunshine together will be just magical, from cruising city streets, to walking nature trails, to visiting exciting new places. However, you need to be mindful of a few things to shield your dog from problems they could face in the heat. Do you know how to look after your dog in the summertime?

Hot Sidewalks

Hot sidewalks in the summertime might sound like nothing to you, but remember that your dog can't wear flip-flops like you can. It may be easy to forget that you walk in shoes that protect you from feeling pavement that can heat to over 120 degrees. Your dog's paws could be in pain on sizzling paved areas and even get badly burned, forming blisters that make it painful to walk. So look after your dog in the summertime by applying wax to their paws, putting them in breathable dog boots and walking them on grass or in shade.

Getting Hot

Getting hot in the summertime might seem like no big deal to you, but remember that your dog can't cool like you can. It may be easy to forget that dogs are prone to overheat. If they're outside too long, have longer fur or don't get enough fresh water, your dog could get sick from dehydration and even go into shock. So look after your dog in the summertime by keeping them in cool places, having their fur kept shorter and giving them lots of fresh water. Talk to your dog walker or pet sitter about these issues too.

Tiny Critters

Tiny critters in the summertime might seem like invisible matters to you, but remember that your dog can't keep clean like you can. It may be easy to forget that fleas breed much faster in the summertime because they thrive in warm environments, and your dog’s coat is the perfect place. Prevent this issue as soon as the summer starts by adequately trimming your dog's hair to the point where fleas and ticks can't hide. It’s also important to stock up on flea and tick prevention for dogs to help reduce their risk of getting them in the first place. Fleas can lead to skin infections, worm parasites and irritated skin. They are hell for your dog. Make sure that you help them out of this situation, and they’re likely to have a pleasant summer, as will you.

Focusing on the specific ailments your dog could experience during summer is key to having a happy, healthy best friend. They're part of the family so treat them as such.

 

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What to Do About Your Dog's Misaligned Teeth

From their origin as wolves, dogs have become our family, and it's been a pretty sweet deal. Both humans and dogs have each gotten a loyal companion and working partner. However, as humans have created more breeds through unnatural selection, dogs have suffered some downsides. One of the many different health issues caused by selective breeding has been misaligned teeth. Do you know what to do about your dog's misaligned teeth?

Definition

Misaligned teeth is a condition in which your dog's teeth are crowded within certain areas of the mouth, pushing against one another or pressing against gums. Certain dog breeds are more susceptible. The extent to which the condition causes your dog pain will be determined by the misalignment severity of their teeth. Misaligned teeth can range from incredibly painful to absolutely painless, in which case nothing might need to be done.

Detection

Misaligned teeth can be difficult to detect in your dog's mouth. Only a small percentage of your dog's teeth are visible. Signs include your dog wincing while masticating, chewing excessively or having bad breath. If these issues aren't resolved by giving your dog the best dog dental chews and brushing their teeth, misaligned teeth might be what's causing your dog pain or infection where their teeth roots have become exposed.

Treatment

Misaligned teeth in your dog's mouth can be easy to treat. Your vet will want to do an X-ray to understand the extent of the condition. Treatment will depend on symptoms. If your dog appears to have no pain or problems eating, your vet will probably only recommend mouth hygiene. If intervention is required, your vet will likely pull the teeth in question. Although drastic, it's a standard method to make your dog feel better.

Your dog's misaligned teeth might have been created by selective breeding but can be treated when you take a little selective action for your dog's beautiful smile.

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How to Help Your Dog with Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a condition in which your dog's hip muscles deteriorate, making moving and walking both difficult and painful. Do you know how to help your dog with hip dysplasia?

Signs

Signs of hip dysplasia, even in small puppies as young as five months old, include a slight bunny hop, reluctance going up and down stairs, issues getting up and gait deterioration.

Causes

Causes of hip dysplasia are both genetic and environmental. Dogs can be born with the condition or develop it over time for one reason or another. Genetically, a throwback gene causes hip dysplasia, even if breeders make parental adjustments. Environmentally, body development, exercise regime and rapid weight gain can cause the condition.

Hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy is a moderate form of exercise that helps strengthen your dog's muscles affected by hip dysplasia. There are a lot of centers that offer hydrotherapy for dogs where they can swim in a pool or walk on a treadmill with their legs underwater. This helps rehabilitate your dog safely, leading to a more pain-free body.

Massage

Massage helps invigorate your dog's muscles affected by hip dysplasia. Take your dog to a specialized massage therapist. You can also learn to massage your dog's muscles. In addition to being a great way to bond with your dog, massage also helps alleviates stiffness in your dog's muscles, leading to a much better range of movement.

Bedding

Bedding helps support your dog's muscles affected by hip dysplasia. Look for memory foam dog beds and put them where your dog likes to hang out, rest or sleep, even in their wooden dog houseUsing memory foam in dog beds helps sooth your dog's muscles and minimize pressure, leading to a more relaxed body.

Your dog may have certain difficulties with hip dysplasia, but you can make sure they get special therapies and beds to help them move and walk easier and with a lot less pain.

 

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What to Do When Breed Traits Impact Your Dog's Health

There are more than 300 dog breeds in the world, each with their own fascinating history. It's no surprise then that the breed traits of your dog can eventually determine their medical conditions. Understanding the breed or mix of breeds of your dog will help you take the best care of them, from choosing the right pet insurance pan to following tailored pet health precautions. Do you know what to do when breed traits impact your dog's health?

Labrador Retrievers

Labrador Retrievers are intelligent and loving, making them popular with families. They're also sporty and need great exercise, including playtime, to burn off their terrific energy. As long as your Labrador Retriever is kept active, they'll have few health issues. So make sure to hire a dog walker or pet sitter to give them lots of fresh air. Without let's-go plans, this breed can suffer weight gain, possibly leading to serious heart conditions.

Chihuahuas

Chihuahuas are exotic and selective, making them popular with bohemians. They're also delicate and need gentle handling to ensure maximum safety for their tiny frames. As long as your Chihuahua is kept comfy, they'll have a long lifespan. So find the best pet stroller to have them travel in snug style. Without wheels-on plans, this breed can suffer damaged kneecaps, possibly making it difficult for them to walk.

Pugs

Pugs are cute and hilarious, making them popular with revelers. They're also flat-faced and need conditioned air when it's hot out to cycle oxygen through their tubby muzzles. As long as your Pug is kept cool, they'll avoid much difficulty breathing. So take brief walks and keep the air on to help them respire during heat waves. Without just-right rooms, this breed can suffer breath shortness, possibly ending in fatality.

Cocker Spaniels

One of the defining features of the Cocker Spaniel breed is their large floppy ears. Sure, they may be cute, but they are also the cause of some health complaints. Firstly, the hair around their ears needs brushing regularly so that it doesn’t get tangled. It’s important to get the inside of their ears checked out every year to make sure that they aren’t developing seborrhea, a condition that causes an excessive buildup of earwax. Unfortunately, Cocker Spaniels can also suffer from eye problems at a much higher rate than other breeds of dog.

It’s important that you know all about the possible illnesses of these popular breeds so that you can make an informed decision on which one you get for your family. Choosing a breed that is prone to a lot of different illnesses could result in a very high bill from the vet!

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How to Discover and Treat Common Ailments in Your Dog

Do you know how to discover and treat common ailments in your dog?

Ear Infections

Signs your dog may have an ear infection are ear discharge, ear swelling and unusual tiredness.  Ear infections can be caused by allergies, bacteria, ear mites and ingrown hair. Don't wait to take your dog to the vet if you suspect an ear infection. It's relatively easy to treat by keeping the ear clean. However, in some rare cases, the vessel of your dog's outer ear may have ruptured and needs repair.

Fleas and Ticks

Signs your dog may have fleas and ticks are excessive skin licking, nibbling or scratching, hair loss, irritated or red skin and little black skin dots, also known as flea dirt. Ticks look like little black plugs attached to the skin. Just one flea on your dog can turn into thousands more within weeks, and ticks can carry life-debilitating diseases. So be on the lookout and ask your dog walker or pet sitter to be too. It's important to act fast and get your dog on a consistent regimen for fleas and ticks to eliminate and prevent them. This includes flea and tick medicine for dogs, from oral to topical, as well as shampoos, special collars and, if need be, removal with tweezers.

WormS

Signs your dog may have worms, which are parasites, are bottom-dragging, diarrhea, possibly with blood in it, hair loss and an overall poor appearance you can't peg, including a dull coat and sullen eyes. Your dog can get different types of worms, including hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms and whipworms. Hookworms can be fatal to puppies. So, again, be on the lookout and don't wait to act. Treatment at the vet will depend on what kind of worms your dog has. The sooner you rid your dog of worms the better, and doing so may even save your puppy's life.

Hot Spots

Signs your dog may have hot spots, or acute moist dermatitis, are, again, excessive skin biting or scratching, hair loss and inflamed or red skin. Hot spots can result from an allergic reaction or a bacterial skin infection and increase in size very quickly if you do nothing. So, again, acting rapidly is essential. The vet will shave the area around your dog's hot spots for better access and prescribe a treatment of oral and topical medications, as well as a possible food change.

Being a good pet parent means looking out for signs of common ailments in your dog and acting swiftly to restore health and happiness. You'll see lots of tail wagging for sure.

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How Your Home Might Be Making Your Dog Sick

Your dog sometimes seems like a little indestructible ball of fluff, but sometimes they can be vulnerable to common household items. Do you know how your home might be making your dog sick?

Household Toxins

Household toxins found in cleaning products you use at home can harm your dog. Never clean with ammonia and bleach on the same day, as a mix of the two can be fatal to dogs. Vapors tend to linger. So look out for pet-friendly cleaning products on the market.

Unwelcome Insects

Unwelcome insects from your home's garden or yard can be dangerous to your dog. So get your dog on a regular regimen to prevent fleas and ticks. Also, caulking and sealing any holes or leaks in your home can make it a lot harder for creepy critters to find their way in. In your home's garden or yard, put in plants that ward off pests and keep the ground clear of any debris like cut grass or leaves where pests can dwell.

Outdoor Plants

Outdoor plants can be poisonous to your dog, including, but not limited to, azaleas, daffodils and jasmine. So plant pet-friendly flora or put up barriers around flower or plant beds to keep your dog out. It'll also look pretty out there.

Staying Inside

Staying inside your home can be harmful to your dog. Getting out is key for your dog's physical health and mental balance. Fresh air gets your dog's blood pumping, and new environments stimulate their mind. Socializing with other pets and people builds your dog's confidence and tolerance. Discuss an outdoor program with your dog walker or pet sitter. Time outside will help your dog be well at home.

Examine the impact your home might have on your dog, and remain aware that your best friend can be much more vulnerable to your home than you realize.

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What to Do When Your Dog Has a Heart Problem

While dogs can have different types of health concerns, one of the most misunderstood are those relating to the heart, the body's central organ. Do you know what to do when your dog has a heart problem?

Problem Signs

The first signs your dog may have a heart problem are likely to be small. For large breeds, such as Doberman Pinschers or Dalmatians, pay particular attention to coughing, as these breeds are more susceptible to heart issues. Other symptoms your dog may have a heart problem are fairly generic. Your dog may appear lethargic or show little interest in the things they used to enjoy. To catch a heart problem early, take your dog to the vet for regular checkups. Dogs over the age of 10 need a vet checkup every six months.

Problem Types

The most common heart problem in older dogs is congestive heart failure, an enlarged heart. Younger dogs, particularly Boston Terriers, are prone to a heart problem called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, the thickening of the heart's walls.

Next Steps

First and foremost, feed your dog the best dog food you can for your budget. Look for dog foods with a high level of potassium which aids heart function. Second, get your dog gentle exercise through easy and relaxed walks. If your dog shows signs of being tired, slow down or stop the walk. Don't forget to partner with your dog walker or pet sitter for your dog's exercise program. Finally, schedule your dog for regular checkups at the vet to help manage a heart problem. For example, if you’re tempted to give your dog supplements to aid heart health, talk first with your vet to get their advice.

If your dog has a heart problem, it's rarely a death sentence if you take charge. So catch your dog's heart problem early and take steps to limit its impact so your best friend can have a good quality of life.

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How to Help Your Dog Lose Weight

Our weight has a significant impact on our health, and this is also the case for dogs. Sure, your chubby dog may look cute, but a few extra pounds can have serious consequences, such as heart disease and diabetes. Do you know how to help your dog lose weight?

Change Food

It’s a good idea to change your dog’s food. To research and find lower-calorie dog foods, visit pet stores near you or go online. You'll need to find the best food for your dog’s breed and age. It’s also key to cut out treats while your dog is trying to lose weight.

Keep Records

Keeping a food diary for your dog can help you track daily calorie intake. Make a record of everything your dog eats, even treats or table scraps they're not supposed to get. This can help you see where improvements can be made.

Increase Walks

Your dog will lose weight faster if you take them on longer or more frequent walks. If you don’t have the time to do so, consider hiring a dog walker or pet sitter. The more exercise your dog gets, the more calories they burn.

Use Supplements

Supplements can help your dog lose weight. Omega 3 supplements can help improve your dog's joint movement and fat-burning process. L-carnitine can help increase your dog's amount of lean muscle mass. Ask your local pet store if they have these supplements. You might also be able to get them from your vet or a great online store.

If overweight, your dog can suffer from a range of medical conditions. To help your best friend, remember these great trim-down tips. Your dog will thank you for it.

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Cancer In Dogs: The Early Warning Signs

Cancer In Dogs: The Early Warning Signs

It’s heartbreaking that our beloved dogs can come down with serious illnesses like cancer. But as with humans, a diagnosis of cancer doesn’t have to be a life sentence. Many types can be treated efficiently, but catching it as early as possible is crucial. It’s in a dog’s nature to hide their pain, and so it can be difficult spotting if anything is wrong. Thankfully there are a few early signs to watch out for. If your dog displays any of these, have them checked out by a vet right away.