In addition to dog-proofing your home, you'll want to create a soothing, pleasant environment to welcome your new best friend. Set up a crate for your dog in a quiet but well-used area and provide plenty of chew toys. You can also use accessories like music from Through a Dog's Ear and Dog Appeasing Pheromone sprays to comfort your new pooch and help it adjust to its new environment.
If you can swing it, it's a good idea to bring your new pup home on a Friday and take a couple of days off work the following week. That way you can practice getting your dog used to your absence and establish some household rules and routines.
Casey Lomonaco owns Rewarding Behaviors Dog Training in Binghamton, NY.
The American justice system stands firm on the presumption of innocence. The accused in a criminal trial is innocent until proven guilty. The Latin term for this is Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat. This means that the burden of proof is on the prosecution (qui dicit, the one who speaks out), which must gather and present legally admissible evidence that the accused (qui negat, the one who denies) is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If there is any doubt, the accused must be acquitted.
Unless he’s an American Pit Bull Terrier.
Tragically, the pit bull has been routinely betrayed by the American justice system . In the case of this most feared and legislated-against dog breed, the rule is: Guilty until proven innocent. The dog doesn’t even get to stand trial – he’s simply sentenced and removed.
Removed from the home he knew for years, seized by animal control officers in the presence of the horrified children he loves; removed from the animal shelters that are meant to be a homeless dog’s port in any storm; removed from the compassion that should encircle every dog, regardless of breed.
It’s unconstitutional and un-American, but it’s the way it is. Thousands of good dogs have been branded “bad,” found guilty without a fair trial . The breed as a whole has been categorized as “dangerous” and handed the harshest possible sentence: Death.
The accused come in all shapes, sizes, and ages. Even before they get a chance at life, pit bull puppies are put down at animal shelters in states where breed specific legislation makes it illegal to own one. The lucky ones are pulled by dedicated animal rescuers, then transported to other parts of the country where they may legally be fostered or adopted. The unlucky ones are euthanized by gas, intracardial (“heartstick”) or intravenous injection.
“Punish the Deed, Not the Breed” is a famous pro-pit slogan. But it’s the breed that keeps getting punished, over and over again . The dog pays the price for its owner’s irresponsible deeds. The real criminals are the people who exploit, abuse, and neglect these dogs – not the dogs themselves. Yet it’s the dogs – not their owners – who get the bad rap.
Convicted dog fighter Michael Vick is enjoying a successful second career in football; his new employer received a congratulatory call from the President of the United States thanking him for giving Vick a second chance. The dogs Vick killed are forgotten. Some of them are enjoying their second chance, experiencing love and kindness for the first time. Others – the ones Vick boasted about intentionally drowning or electrocuting - never got that chance.
The injustice that continuously befalls dogs categorically labeled “dangerous” has motivated many to rise to the pit bull’s defense. One pit defender is documentary filmmaker Jeff Theman . His production company, Riverfire Films, has spent the better part of the last two years shooting and editing footage for ”Guilty ‘Til Proven Innocent,” an investigation of breed specific legislation in his home state of Ohio.
Jeff’s constant companion and muse throughout the long process of making this documentary has been his adopted dog Preston, rescued from an Ohio fighting ring by Cleveland’s For the Love of Pits and granted what all pit bulls deserve: a new leash on life.
In Jeff, Preston found a doting Dad: “I’ve even received a speeding ticket for rushing back home to be with him!” he says. “Words just can’t describe the unconditional love I have for him. Every day Preston changes minds; he’s a shining example of why dogs should be judged as individuals and not systematically killed.”
I’m proud to be one of the people speaking up for pit bulls in Jeff’s film, and I’m looking forward to his final cut. In the meantime, I hope you’ll view the trailer and post a comment about it. Preston thanks you.
All that hard work is evident in the trailer, which was just released on YouTube. Check it out here .
as seen on: http://blogs.dogster.com/living-with-dogs/riverfire-films-unleashes-documentary-on-discrimination-against-dogs/2011/04/
At a minimum, you should plan on hiring a trainer and a veterinarian for your dog's care. Depending on your schedule, lifestyle, and the breed of your new dog, you may also need to work with groomers, pet sitters, boarding facilities, dog walkers, or even daycare operators.
Be aware that with the exception of veterinary medicine, all of these professions are unregulated. Do some detailed research to find qualified and trustworthy pet professionals in your area who can provide your pet with the best possible care.
By Casey Lomonaco owns Rewarding Behaviors Dog Training in Binghamton, NY.
It can be embarrassing when your dog acts a certain way in public, but you should recognize that it won't help if you're equally reactive. For instance, if your dog is barking and lunging at another dog across the street, pull it back and say nothing. Just remove it from the stimulus that triggered the reaction. Yelling at your dog for reacting simply adds stress.
It's important to remember that you need to set an example, because dogs watch us and learn from our body language. If you are stressed, they might not understand why, but they might see a reason for themselves to be on high alert. So be aware of yourself and note whether you are cuing your dog's reactions with your own stress.
by Tammy Reinarz, Owner, Tammy's Dog Training Service
Seasonal pet health hazards should be considered during the extreme temperatures of both winter and summer. Keeping pets safe during the summer is easiest if you know what the risks are and how to manage them for your dog's safety.
The dog days of summer provide lots of opportunities for fun with your dog (camping, hiking, swimming, kayaking and backpacking, to name a few) but also bring a unique set of health hazards and risks pet owners should be aware of; including, but not limited to: dehydration, burned pads, parasite infestation, heat stroke, leptospirosis, and seasonal allergies.
Six Common Summer Hazards for Dogs 1. Dehydration
One of the best ways to keep your dog safe in the summer time is by providing lots of cool, clean, fresh water. Consider preparing low sodium chicken broth or yogurt ice cubes, and introducing canned dog foods (best when frozen in a Kong!) to increase the moisture content in your dog's diet.
2. Burned Pads
Under the summer sun, asphalt on sidewalks and streets can heat to a temperature that can burn a dog's paws. To avoid scorched paws, walk your dog very early in the morning or in the late evening when the streets have cooled off. If you must walk your dog during the day, dog booties can protect his feet. Always put your hand down on the asphalt for about thirty seconds - if you must pull your hand away because the street is too hot, it is too hot for your dog to walk on without hurting his paws. If you don't want your hand on the street for thirty seconds, your dog probably does not want his paws on it for thirty or more minutes of walking.
Summer is the season for fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes; pests which can present a minor discomfort to your dog at best and at worst may be life threatening or cause self-mutilating behaviors. Feeding your dog a high quality diet, without preservatives or chemicals will build his immune system, making him generally more resistant to parasite infestation. There are a wide variety of preventatives on the market, including chemical spot-on treatments, repellent shampoos, essential oils, and flea/tick collars; talk to your vet to see what she recommends for your dog. Cleaning your house frequently and keeping your dog well groomed will also reduce the risk of parasite infestation.
4. Heat Stroke
Heat stroke is a serious risk to dog's health - in worst case scenarios, it can be fatal. You can prevent heat stroke by restricting your pet's exercise during the hottest hours of the day (early morning or late evening are the best times for exercise during the summer), by making sure he is well hydrated, providing cool places for him to relax, providing opportunities to swim, cooling mats, and by never leaving your dog unattended in the car during summer heat.
Many dogs die annually in hot cars. Even if your windows are cracked or you park in the shade, heat can build quickly in a car in the summer, turning it into an oven. If it's 95 degrees at noon and you leave your windows cracked, the temperature in your car may still rise as high as 113 degrees. This is a recipe for disaster for your dog. If you must leave your dog in the car for any period of time, the air conditioning should stay on. Leaving a dog to die in a hot car is not just a health risk for your dog, but may be cause for animal cruelty charges in some area. The solution? Don't leave your dog in a hot car.
Leptospirosis is contracted through bodily fluids or tissue and can be transmitted through direct (as in the case of a bite or ingestion of flesh) or indirect contact (through water sources, food, etc.) with an infected animal. Stagnant waters are a common source of leptospirosis bacteria. Lepto can cause permanent health problems or death if not treated quickly. Symptoms include fever, vomiting, trembling/shaking, lethargy, anorexia, tenderness of joints and muscles, and increased water intake. If you suspect your dog has lepto, get him to a vet right away, an emergency vet if need be.
There are vaccines for lepto but they do not prevent all strains and can cause significant adverse reactions. Talk to your vet about weighing the risk of infection with the risks associated with the lepto vaccine.
6. Seasonal Allergies
Your dog may be allergic to one or more seasonal items, which include fleas, grass and various plants, and mold. If you suspect your dog may have seasonal allergies, is scratching and perhaps losing fur, a visit to your vet is recommended. Here is a great website where you can learn more about the various kinds of allergies affecting dogs and treatments for canine allergies in any season.
About the Author: Casey Lomonaco graduated with distinction from the Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training and Behavior. She owns Rewarding Behaviors Dog Training in Binghamton, NY. Keep up with Casey by visiting Dogster's Dog Training Guide.
The official state dog of Pennsylvania is the Great Dane. Virginia has the American Foxhound. And Massachusetts has the Boston Terrier (big surprise).
About a dozen states have official state dogs to go along with their state birds. flowers, flags, and even bugs. New York is about to join them, and in doing so, it will be promoting a very special breed of dog: The shelter rescue dog.
An assemblyman and a state senator will be introducing legislation today that calls for the “rescue dog” to be the state dog. A spokesman for assemblyman Micah Kellner, a major animal advocate, told the New York Times that Kellner wants rescue dogs to be the state dog to make people more aware of the importance of adopting from shelters and rescue groups.
as seen on dogster.com
Blind dogs do fine as long as you manage their environment. If you have a blind dog, the best way to ensure her quality of life is to keep the furniture in the same place so she can memorize where it is. Take care not to not move her food and water bowls as well. Also, keep any clutter off the floor that might confuse her if she stumbles on it.
Radio show host and pet expert Tracie Hotchner is the author of The Dog Bible and The Cat Bible. Click here to follow her on Twitter and be sure to check out her website.
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