It’s the official kick-off to the holiday season, first one up, Thanksgiving. Mmmm the turkey, ham, stuffing and desserts… is your mouth watering yet? While we’re over indulging on delicious foods with our extended family and friends, remember these tips so that your best friend(s) have a day to be thankful for also.
- A Tired Dog is a Happy Dog: Before the house starts filling up with friends and family, go for a walk. Get your pups ya-ya’s out now. Besides, it will help you make more room for the great food your going to over indulge in!
- Collar and Tags: As with any gathering, ensure that your pup has their bling on. Collar is on correctly and tags are up-to-date. You don’t want to spend the afternoon searching for a lost dog.
- Turkey and Trimmings: I know, we all want to share a little and every once in a while that’s OK. Ensure that the turkey is fully cooked so that there is no salmonella bacteria and please, please make sure there are no bones. Turkey bones are small and can easily choke or hurt their stomach. Try putting some in a Kong or Busy Buddy and make the moment last, you’re pup will enjoy the food and the challenge.
- Onions, Grapes, Raisins and Chocolate, Oh My!: Just because they are all ingredients that make the day and meal doesn’t mean they should be shared. All of the items listed are toxic to dogs and other pets and should not be shared.
- Keep a Lid On It: The meal smells so good while cooking, it also smells so good to your best buddy in the trash. Keep a lid on it and avoid messes and embarrassing moments.
- No Yappy Hours: While the Thanksgiving cocktails may be flowing two things you should always adhere to. 1. Don’t drink and drive and 2. Never leave your cocktails on the ground or in reach of your dogs or other pets, they are toxic.
Most of all, have fun, be thankful and enjoy time with your family and friends! Happy Thanksgiving from all of us here at DogGeek.com
November 5, 2019 | DogGeek
If you’re like most pet families your best friend is right there besid you while you’re cooking. Whether it’s just a Monday night frozen meal or a Thanksgiving feast Fido doesn’t care, he wants a piece of the action, or turkey. Ensure that your best friend has a great Thanksgiving and doesn’t need a trip to the emergency vet. Here are 5 foods they need to avoid.
- Turkey Bones. While everyone’s been told that dogs love to chew on bones, turkey bones are not the ones to give them. Turkey bones are small and can become lodged in your dog’s stomach or throat. They also splinter causing severe damage to the stomach.
- Fat Trimmings. Fatty foods like turkey skin and gravy are very difficult for dogs to digest. They can also cause pancreatitis which includes vomiting, depression, reluctance to move and abdominal pain as symptoms.
- Dough and Batter. The dough can rise in your dog’s stomach and lead to vomiting, bloating and severe pain. The raw eggs can also spread salmonella.
- Grapes and Raisins. Both can cause kidney failure in dogs.
- Mushrooms. They can damage kedneys, liver and the central nervous system.
Be safe and have a happy Thanksgiving!
November 5, 2019 | DogGeek
A DogGeek.com exclusive by Teresa Barker
We all need exercise to stay healthy, no matter what the weather forecast says, especially dogs! Here’s some indoor games you can play to get your pooch off the couch, get moving, and to keep him from being bored on dreary days.
- Hide and seek with favorite toys
This game may start with teaching your dog how to sit and stay. Start by having him sit and stay while you place a favorite toy (squeaky ones are a favorite in our house) where he can see it, but away from him (like across the room). Use your release word (ours is “OK”) and let him go fetch the toy, making sure to allow enough time to celebrate the reward of waiting patiently, by dancing around with his toy in his mouth. You can make this game more and more complicated, incrementally, by moving further and further away with the toy, around a corner, to another room, up a flight of stairs and eventually by hiding the toy in places where your dog could eventually find it. When hiding the toy, think about a child’s Easter egg hunt. Don’t make it too hard, you do want your dog to be successful, eventually!
- Keep Away
There are many variations on this game. With two people, you can simply toss a toy or ball back and forth to each other, letting your dog chase it in each direction. We’ve even gone as far as to use tennis rackets and a tennis ball in the garage, for greater distance. Be sure to “accidentally” drop the ball once in a while, to keep your dog a part of the game.
- Agility Training
You can get very creative at home with simple props, like a hula hoop. Start by using a piece of kibble to coax your dog to walk through the hoop, as it rests on the floor. Once your dog is used to walking through the hoop on ground level, lift it off the ground one inch at time. By the end of a very rainy week, you might have your pal leaping through the hoop a couple of feet off the ground!
- Puzzles and Toys
There are many treat-dispensing and puzzle toys on the market for dogs now. These toys are mentally challenging, requiring your dogs to ‘figure out’ how to get the treat out from it’s hiding spot. Look for sturdy toys that will withstand heavy chewing.
A hallway with doors closed makes for a perfect runway for a game of fetch. A straight stairwell does, too. Use a plush ball or toy to avoid the ball going in all directions and to get the most distance out of running to fetch.
Mental exercise, as well as physical exercise, is an important part of your dog’s health. It’s fun, relieves boredom, and can be extremely bonding for the both of you!
November 1, 2019 | DogGeek
A DogGeek.com exclusive
Dog vomiting is a common daily occurrence for many dogs because of the very fast consumption of food by your pooch or may be because he ate something he shouldn’t have. But in some dogs, it may be an indication of any serious hidden illness.
Changing the meal schedule of your dog can be an easy fix to the problem if it isn’t anything serious. But in case this didn’t seem to work, be sure to get your dog good medical attention without any delay as he might have a serious underlying illness.
Frequent vomiting of your dog can lead to intestinal problems, extreme dehydration, and in worse cases, organ failure. It is essential that you do not ignore the vomiting of your dog if it exceeds the frequency of twice per hour, and take him to the vet immediately.
Reasons for Frequent Dog Vomiting
- Intestinal parasites – These can lead to both diarrhea and vomiting in adult dogs and puppies. Dogs with illnesses, like flue are also known to have minor vomiting.
- Higher stomach acid – If your dog vomits soon after his meals and the vomiting is yellow in color, it can suggest overproduction of acids and bile in your dog. Feeding small, frequent meals to your dog can help you correct this problem.
- Food intolerance – At times, change in dog food can also lead to diarrhea and vomiting as your dog might be intolerant to certain ingredients of this new food. Beef, pork, fish, wheat, and salt are the common foods that can cause food intolerance.
- Eating Grass – Although it is normal for dogs to eat grass but if your canine friend has eaten too much of grass, it may lead to vomiting.
- Consuming Non-Food Items – It is natural for dogs to hog upon almost anything that they come across, including garbage, dead animals, plants, and others. Some of these items can be very dangerous when consumed by your dog. To eliminate this habit in dogs, you may want to buy dog supplies or toys to keep them occupied with harmless stuff.
- Eating Human Food – Human foods that have a higher content of salt, sugar, and fat, should be given very sparingly to dogs. Frequent consumption of these foods can not only cause vomiting but also lead to chronic illnesses, like diabetes.
- Hurried or Excessive Drinking or Eating – Drinking or eating hurriedly or in excessive quantities can cause your pooch to vomit soon after the meal. This is especially common among small breeds and puppies.
- Illnesses – Diseases like cancers, canine parvo, and pancreatitis can also be the reasons for vomiting. Bacterial infections, ear infections, and tumors are also cited as one of the many reasons that can cause vomiting. For better diagnosis, it is essential that you observe the secondary symptoms and any change in behavior of your pooch, apart from vomiting.
What to Do When Your Dog is Vomiting Frequently?
If you suspect any illness, you should call your vet immediately. If your pooch has eaten any dead or spoiled animal by any chance, your vet will prescribe the necessary antibiotics. In some extreme cases, your pooch might need to be provided with an IV drip overnight to avoid any dehydration.
In mind vomiting cases, Pepto Bismol or Tylenol may be recommended by your vet. But it is important that you must NEVER give these to your furry friend, unless your vet consents for it first.
Any food should be kept away from your dog if he vomits frequently all through the day. Provide your dog with ice chips to make up for his hydration but don’t give him any fluids if your dog keeps vomiting or has diarrhea. After you’ve not given him water for 12 hours, begin introducing bland meals to him. This includes rice, boiled hamburger, or plain oatmeal. If your pooch stops vomiting in the next few days, you can re-introduce his normal dog food.
Brenda Lyttle is a dog lover and enjoys making Halloween costumes for dogs in her free time.
October 10, 2019 | DogGeek
Many years before dog-shaming.com took off people have shaming their dogs in Halloween costumes. I know… I know… but your dog likes it. Let’s face it, no one wants to be forcefully dressed up in clothes they didn’t pick out. Now, we’re not judging because we’ve put the fair share of costumes our dogs and still do. We’re just calling it what it is… CUTE! All fun put aside, please remember these safety tips so your pooch ghost is safe this Halloween!
- No matter how many tricks they do, no treats from the candy bowl! Chocolate, artificail sweetners and other candies are toxic to our best friends. if you do suspect that your dog has ingested something toxic, call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.
- Pumpkins may look great on the front porch, but open flames should never be around a pet. Try using flame shaped LED lights, you can easily find them at Target or other stores.
- Back to the costumes, if you’re going to do it make sure that your dog can walk, move and most importantly breathe in their costume.
- Don’t let them greet for the treats. During the time where trick-or-treaters are coming to the door, keep your dog in another room so that they can not dart out the door if they get scared. Most lost pets are lost during the holidays because of the distractions.
- Put an ID tag on them! In case they escape you want them to be able to come home. ID’s Only about 15% of dogs lost are reunited with their families. ID and microchipping is the best way to ensure that your best friend finds their way home.
And remember, have a great time!
October 2, 2019 | DogGeek
Summertime is here and that means lots of activities for you and your best friend but it also means chances for danger. While out and about with your dog this summer, remember these pet safety rules.
- Never leave your dog in a car alone, even if the windows are down.
Even on a nice 80 degree day, your car can heat up over 100 degrees or more in 10 minutes. Dogs have heat strokes at 110 degrees. Cracking the window still does not allow enough ventilation for all the heat to escape and opening it too much will allow your dog the ability to jump out. If you can’t take your dog with you every where that you go, leave him at home. Trust us, he will appreciate it more.
- Never put your dog in the back of a pickup truck without being in a crate properly restrained.
Yes, we know he may “like” it, but it’s not safe. Dogs are easily distracted by many things, squirrels being one of the most popular items. You do no want your dog jumping out of the back of a moving vehicle. And do not use just a leash to keep them from jumping as your dog could hang themselves by accident. If your dog has to ride in the back, please crate them with the proper restraints and protection from the wind. Just like how you like being protected by the windshield, so do they.
- Asphalt heats up quickly, protect your dog’s paws
Black asphalt, as with any black items, heats up quickly in the sun light. Don’t walk your dog during the heat of the day and if you do, check the temperature of the asphalt. If it burns your hands it can burn the pads on their feet.
- Ensure your dog has plenty of shade while outside
If you must leave your dog outside for any amount of time, ensure that they have plenty of shade as to not get sunburned or over heated.
- Keep their water fresh and full
During the summer
water evaporates fast and is a place where parasites can grow. Remember to replace their water daily and to keep it full so that your dog does not dehydrate.
- Go to the groomer
Imagine if you had to have a fur coat on all summer. While a dog’s hair does have built in heat management, they need help. Take yours to a dog groomer to get their undercoat brushed out so that the air can flow thru easily cooling your dog. Never shave down to the skin as their skin can burn just like yours.
- Keep them on a leash
We know, it’s summer and everyone wants to run free, but unless it’s an off leash dog park or your fenced back yard, always keep your best friend on a leash. It will help keep them from getting lost, getting into a fight with other dogs or being hit by a car.
- Keep the cocktails and food on high ground
Everyone loves a cookout, so does your dog.
Remember that your dog doesn’t know which foods and drinks are good for them, they only know what smells good to them. Cocktails and beer can lead to alcohol poisoning fast.
Have fun this summer and be safe!
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July 5, 2019 | DogGeek