Monday, March 31, 2008

Dog Behavior School

… when your hear these words you think about something fancy, not necessary and not really for your average dog companion. Well, I was thinking just like you until I got as a present a tiny golden retriever pup. I love dogs and he was the perfect present and of course at that moment I didn’t think about my busy schedule and that I would not have so much time to spend with him. I just thought about how cute he is and that we will get along very well.

When the excitement faded away we had to come up with a solution on house training my little friend. I sincerely didn’t think that my life will change so much because of a dog by soon I discovered the need to “dog proof” my flat. It wasn’t so much about my things but more for him not to get hurt.

Although I thought this way, my mind was changed one day when I came home from work and finding my friend chewing on my designer shoes! I was stunned how that sweet little creature could ravage in such a matter my home!? It was then when I realized that he needed more attention from my side and discipline as well. “It’s a pity that you have to keep the dog inside like this” one of my friends said – but I won’t let him go!

I searched on some sites where pet owners give advices on how to manage with you companion and your professional life and I understood that it’s best for both of us to get Puffy (that’s his name) to a dog behavior school where professionals can take care of him and teach him how to behave in the household properly. It’s not like you’re giving up on him as I feared, but you really show how much you care about your bundle of joy and give him the opportunity to be among other dogs, learn to socialize and also understand what a house is all about.

In this era of internet and speed of information we are trapped in a ravaging cycle of agendas and if we want to keep our personal life we have to come with a solution. I found the solution to take care of my companion while I’m gone having a career. But when I’m back he’s not sad because he feels left out but happy about he’s day at this very good dog behavior school.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Luxury Dog Houses

I don’t want to be mean and all, but nowadays, when one says “living a dog’s life”…well, it just isn’t a bad thing. Don’t get me wrong, I know that there are a lot of dogs in this world that truly have a bad life, being mistreated, but, there is another part, that lives in spoil. I for one know I would like to live in my own “palace” and the only thing I have to worry about is being cute and fluffy, and most importantly sleep and eat all day. When I say “palace” I mean this new trend, if you like, of the so called luxury dog houses. The difference between a normal dog house and a luxurious one? The name says it all! It’s all around luxurious…and I know that many of us don’t live in such houses.

There are many stiles of luxurious dog houses. There is the classic country for those that fancy their little angels to live like a cowboy (yes, many resemble a ranch, although there are other options too), then there is the traditional style, which is just like a normal house, front porch and all, and then we have the doggy duplex. These are just a few styles that I will mention, but in the end, there is no limit to what you can do for your precious dog.

However, just the style is not enough. They come with all kinds of add-ons to make your dog live truly in a lavish palace. Depending on the style chosen, you can have the provider install electrical switches, outlet placement and lighting. An electrical breaker box for safety is offered by them. The breaker box can be hidden by a picture or wall hanging. The electricity can be set up to have an exterior box with a hidden plug, (use a extension cord and just plug it in), or can be set up for your electrician to hot wire it directly into your system. Also you can install in this fabulous dog house a satellite dish, internet, surround system with speakers, phone lines, a DVD player , game systems and many more. After all, which dog doesn’t enjoy playing on PSP or just watch a football match?

Of course these houses come with a cooling and heating system. Radiant electric floor heating systems can be used with the tile, stone, laminate and engineered wood flooring. This system can be set up with a programmable thermostat and is a very nice way to heat your new dog’s house. For the exterior there are a lot of options too: cultured brick, cultured stone, cedar siding, log home siding, vinyl siding, hardie plank and many more. Not to mention you can choose the theme you want (ranch, classic American country house, mansion like in the movies, etc.). We must not forget the other building options: columns, sunrooms, dormers, vaulted ceilings, arched windows, skylights and bay windows, screened porches. Almost forgot about the mini pool in which your dog to have fun and the high quality furniture.

So all in all these luxury dog houses have everything. It is true that the cost of such a dog house is very high to say the least, ranging from 900$ to several thousands (the real luxurious ones) but then again, the thought that your precious dog will live in such a mini palace kind of makes it ok, doesn’t it?

Sunday, March 9, 2008

The Pharaoh Hound - Dog Breed

Agile, with elegant and harmonious moves, this cunning hunter with an incredible keen sense of smell is being grown nowadays almost exclusively in UK.

Structurally speaking he is being built like a Cirneco (Sicilian hunting dog), but somewhat bigger, with a lengthened head and a stop almost unseen, his muzzle looks like a cone. His eyes are yellowish, ovals, with a mine that expresses attention. The ears are big and thin, straightened up and his coat is made out off a short, shiny, smooth hair, always with a copper like color, with or without reddish spots, eventually with white spots on the chest, paws and tail.

The origins of the Pharaoh’s Hound, similar to that of the Cineco of Edna (the Sicilian hound) can be traced back to the hounds of the Ancient Egypt whose bodies where found mummified by the archeologists. The breed was registered at the British Kennel Club that recognized its Maltese nationality, because apparently the first exemplars that arrived in England in 1920 came from Malta and Gozo. The breed had been officially recognized in 1977.

Proud and with an independent spirit, it is more caring and playful than other greyhounds because it was selected for company therefore his sociability in relation with humans had priority. He is intelligent, agile and very careful at everything that surrounds him.

Being a country side dog, robust, it does not need special grooming, but it is affected by low temperatures.

He can accommodate very well to living in an apartment, but he needs and must be given the possibility to run freely at least once a week.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Things to keep in mind when buying a portable dog kennel

Apparently the love for our little friends knows no limits. As the dogs bring a smile in our life, no matter how hard it is, we are doing our best to improve the quality of their life, as well. Therefore I saw that now a new thing appeared, that is quite practical: portable dog kennels. The dog can enjoy the fresh air outside, or simply accompany you in a holiday while your lawn (if at home) doesn’t get ruined by the constant running around of your dog.

However there are a few things you should consider before buying a portable dog kennel. The size of your dog. If you have a puppy you will want to get a smaller kennel this also goes for owners of small dogs. The kennel shouldn't be huge but it should be large enough for your dog to stand up, turn around, and lay down in without any problems. After all, the idea is to make him feel good to. Where you want to put the kennel. Most dog owners prefer to put the kennel in an area that is out of the way but still provides the dog interaction with household traffic.

Type of material the kennel is made out of. Portable dog kennels come in wire, nylon, or plastic. Some of the more elaborate kennels have bamboo or Rattan panels built onto a wire body for style. Take some time to consider your options before going out and purchasing the cheapest one you find or the one that you think looks the best. Remember that they will probably try to chew the material, and might break a tooth while doing it. So looks don’t matter when buying a portable dog kennel. The safety of your dog is all that matters.

How much will you be using it? If you are only going to be using it in the house you might want to consider a larger wire model. However, if you want to use it for travel or if you will be putting it in a car then you might consider a nylon kennel that is easily folded down flat for transport and easier set up. You can get wire kennels that fold up and transport fairly easy but the nylon kennels are much better for this type of use. The last important thing that you should consider is your budget and how much would you be willing to spend.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A Look at Organic Dog Food

Nowadays we tend to return to foods that are 100% natural, with added chemicals, no technology involved in the process of production or growing…all natural. This is because we are concerned with our state of health, as we are constantly bombarded with chemicals and additives. The same thing is true when it comes to our beloved companions: dogs! Their health is as important as ours.

In organic dog food you can find: natural chicken (raised without growth hormones and antibiotics and fed only a 100% natural, all-vegetable diet, the chicken meat provides amino acids essential for muscles, hormones, enzymes, antibodies and structural and protective tissues) natural chicken meal, chicken fat, menhaden fish meal, organic soy meal, organic brown rice, barley, flax seed meal, peas, carrots, oats, and so on; these are all natural products, with no presence of chemicals in it. In this kind of food you will never find: poultry by-products, chemical fertilizers, antibiotics or steroids, chemical additives or artificial preservatives, wheat or corn (as it may cause allergy to some dogs), artificial colors and dyes. If you can find one of the above in what was told to you that is organic food for your dog, then you were tricked.

Organic dog food has a lot of benefits for your dog. Here are 5 of the most important:

1. Quality of life and longevity: by feeding him organic dog food you can help ensure your dog lives a long, happy and healthy life. A luxurious, shiny coat, energy to run and play, a healthy weight and a strong immune system can maximize your dog’s life expectancy and quality of life into old age.
2. Better overall health and stronger immunity.
3. More energy and a healthy weight
4. Reduction of skin ailments and allergies
5. Fewer digestive disorders.

By looking at the above, I can only say that if you really love your dog, then organic dog food is the thing to feed him with, even though it is much more expensive. But in the end, does the happiness and health of your trustful companion really has a price?

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Toy Dog Breeds - King Charles Spaniel

It is said that King Charles the 2nd of England had such affection towards this dog that he was always absorbed by the play with this dog so much that he never paid attention to the affairs of State.

Dog Breed Appearance.
This dog has a straight, long, shiny coat, with a silky feel when you touch it. The colors are black with tendencies towards red, ruby-red, tricolor and blenheim. The head is convex; the muzzle is short, with prognathism ; the nose is black. Its eyes are big, dark colored and outstripped. Its ears are very long, pointing downwards (looking like a nobleman’s wig) reaching its cheekbones.

Dog Breed History.
The origins of this dog could be found in China or Japan. In the XVI th century it arrived in England from France, where it was used as a hunting dog. At the beginning of the last century he was also used for hunting wild birds, but through an intervention in the breeding process it was transformed in a dog used for company, with a great character and very gracious.

Dog Breed Temperament.
It is a loving dog, balanced, kind to children and very easy to train. It is peaceful towards other dogs. This dog’s coat needs to be constantly and carefully groomed. It does not require a lot of movement, although it loves to walk. It is suitable to live in an apartment with a family.

Dog Breed Health.
The King Charles Spaniel suffers from the same serious health problems as the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. The King Charles Spaniel may have health problems such as heart defects, eye problems, patellar luxation (kneecap slipping), and fused toes, which can cause incorrectly grown toenails. They tend to live 10 to 12 years. “Episodic Falling” is an 'exercise-induced paroxysmal hyper tonicity disorder' meaning that there is increased muscle tone in the dog and the muscles are unable to relax. Although it is often misdiagnosed as epilepsy, the dog remains conscious throughout the episode. Severity of symptoms can range from mild, occasional falling or freezing to seizure-like episodes lasting hours. Episodes can become more or less severe as the dog gets older. Onset of symptoms is usually before five months but may be noticed only later in life.