Homemade Dog Treats: Frozen + Flea Repellant + Versatile

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Contributed by Bones and Blogs

This is probably one of my favorite homemade dog treat recipes, for a few reasons. Mainly because most of the ingredients are common household items, and it repels fleas! Perfect for summer.

Ingredients and their benefits: 

  • Peanut Butter (Protein)
  • 2-3 Bananas (Potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C)
  • Dried Oats (fiber and protein)
  • Coconut Oil (improves skin, digestion, and energy)
  • Brewer’s Yeast (repels fleas, antioxidants)
  • Treat mold 

 

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Steps

Step 1. Add about 3 cups of peanut butter to a large mixing bowl

Step 2. Add your sliced bananas

Step 3. Add 1 cup of dried oats

Step 4. Add 1 tablespoon of Brewer’s Yeast

Step 5: Add coconut oil (add 1 teaspoon per 10lbs of your dog)

Step 6: Mix well

Step 7: Once you have your mixture – it’s time to fill your molds! If you do not have molds, you can also use ice trays or parchment paper.

Step 8: Freeze for 45 minutes – 1 hr.

Step 9: It’s time for your pup to enjoy this cool, healthy, flea repelling creamy treat!

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Save this recipe for year round delicious-ness and just change up the ingredients! During the fall I like to substitute the banana and instead add pumpkin or sweet potato. In the spring I’ll go another direction and add in some frozen blueberries or strawberries. There is no limit to the amount of possibilities and outcomes you can make with just these basic steps and ingredients! This is an awesome recipe to have handy all year around.

Steps to Prevent Excitement Urination

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Submitted by Amber Drake

Have you ever had a dog who was so ridiculously excited to see you (or someone else) when you walked in the door that she peed? Just walk in the door, look at your dog, and suddenly there’s a pile of pee you must clean up as soon as you get home.

Yeah? Us too.

And, so many other dog lovers have had this experience.

I had several clients who would pee every time their owners would walk in the door. They would just be that excited. They couldn’t wait for their best friend to walk through that door each day.

Don’t panic if your dog is one of those who pees when excited. We’ll talk about why this is and the steps you can take to get this behavior under control.

Excitement Urination: What is it?

Excitement urination (peeing when excited) usually happens during a greeting or playtime of some sort.

If your dog is peeing due to excitement, you won’t see any signs of submissive body language. She shouldn’t be looking at you with the ‘whale eye,’ a hunched back, tail between her legs, or display any other sign of submission.

Instead, your dog will be acting completely normal… other than being thrilled about the situation of course.

She won’t act scared, nervous, or frustrated.

She will just be happy. That’s all. And, while we’re on this subject, it’s nothing you should be scolding her for.

Excitement urination most commonly occurs in young dogs and puppies who don’t quite have control of their bladders. Don’t worry, most dogs get rid of this behavior with time (after one year of age).

In some cases, this behavior continues due to allowing it to be reinforced. For example, if you pet and talk to your dog in an excited manner while she’s excitement peeing, you’ll be letting her know all is well and be somewhat encouraging the behavior.

What Are the Recommendations?

First and foremost, as I always say, it’s important to visit your veterinarian. The behaviorist is step two in the process. It’s important to see your vet first so he or she can rule out any medical reasons for the behavior.

To avoid accidents, greeting or playing outdoors is recommended until the problem has been resolved.

Take walks often. Take long walks. Take short walks. Vary your routine. Make sure that bladder is empty as often as possible.

When your dog pees on walks, don’t forget to give praise and/or treats. Show him he’s doing a good job and you’re proud of him. He loves that. And, you’ll be making him more confident, too.

Keep your greeting on the ‘down-low.’ Don’t get overly excited or talk in an excited voice when you arrive home. You shouldn’t have any high-pitched ‘baby talk,’ hand-clapping, or hugging when you see your dog after you get done running errands. It doesn’t sound quite fair, but it’s important for your dog’s behavioral well-being (and for your sanity so you’re not cleaning up puddles all the time).

Once your dog calms down from the excitement of seeing you home, that’s when you can approach her and show her some love.

The last point, and the most important point, is not to punish your dog. Yes, I know I said this earlier in the article. But, it’s extremely important. And, I want you to know that punishment, even if you believe it works will damage the relationship you share with your dog. Your dog will have less trust in you. Your bond will be broken. And, that’s something you may never get back.

The Bottom Line on Excitement

If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the situation, don’t feel bad for walking away for a few moments to take a breath. Calm down. Then return to the situation and think about what’s best.

Of course, if you’re feeling extremely frustrated, you may want to book a consult with a canine behaviorist.

Be patient. And remember, if your dog is under one year old, this is a behavior that could simply be due to her bladder not being ‘ready’ to hold much urine.

 

Potential Hazardous Household Items

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Submitted by Amberly from Bones and Blogs

Within the past few weeks I have found that I have come across a number of articles/blogs with titles along the lines of “I didn’t know this common household item would be harmful to my dog”. And out of the articles I have read- I didn’t know these items were damaging either, I even personally own some of the things on the list.

With this brought to light, I wondered “what other potential hazards are lying in wait around my home?”

Here are a few of the findings that I didn’t know were potentially harmful to my dogs.

- Essential oils – essentials oils are a new trend in the holistic wellness community. They are known for their variety of benefits as well as the many ways it can be used i.e. absorbed through the skin, water soluble, ingested, diffused into air/water vapor etc. While these are currently some of the most “natural” holistic remedies on the market- some are still harmful to dogs. For example Tea Tree Oil can be absorbed orally or through the skin. While .1% of tea tree oil is tolerated and safe for pets, larger increments can cause visual skin irritation and rashes as well as other ailments or illnesses… and this is one of the most commonly used essential oils in homes today. You can put a few drops of Tea Tree oil in your diffuser every day and be unknowingly poisoning your pet.

- Xylitol – a common substitute for sugar and other sweeteners. Xylitol can cause low blood sugar inducing seizures, liver failure, or even death in dogs. Other miscellaneous items that may contain Xylitol gum, toothpaste, mouth wash, lotions and deodorants. Even foods stating “sugar-free” can still contain Xylitol.

- Tulips – Tomatoes, lilies, tulips and other plants and flowers are considered to be in the Nightshade family, and can be toxic to dogs. Remember this the next time your significant other surprises you with a just because bouquet!

- Heavy Metals – It should probably go without saying that heavy metals aren’t the best chew toy for a dog. But when you break it down to paint chips from an old piece of furniture or pennies forgotten in the couch cushions, it seems much more plausible, right? These metals contain toxic variables such as led.

- Fabric Softener Sheets – Yes we all love that fresh + clean new sheet smell – but certain fragrant chemicals within fabric softeners can be harmful when directly put into contact with your dog. Here are some dog safe laundry brands for those of you who aren’t willing to compromise those sweet smelling sheets!

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Stay safe!

Amberly of Bones and Blogs

Do Dogs Cry?

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Submitted by Amber L. Drake

When dogs get upset, do they cry real tears like we do? Do they even have tear ducts?

Our dog’s language is extremely intriguing. And, although they don’t talk the same language as us, they still have ways to communicate their feelings.

Our dog might come up and nudge us if they need something. Or, some may simply want their own space for a while.

We all know when our dog is happy… but do they cry when they’re upset? Do their feelings get hurt? Are there tears falling during times of upset?

A DOG’S TEAR DUCTS

Yes, dogs do have tear ducts like us. And, anyone who has a Maltese, or a Poodle, can attest to that. They are particularly apparent if your dog is pure white. Dog lovers who have a Maltese or Poodle are continuously wiping off the corner of their dog’s eyes due to their tear staining.

If the tear stains aren’t continuously wiped off, our dog will appear to be extremely unhealthy. And, it’s probably not too comfortable for them either.

Other breeds may also have excessive drainage from their eyes. In technical terms, this phenomenon is known as epiphora.

Tear types and emotions

There are two types of tears humans and dogs share. These tears are known as basal tears and reflexive tears. Basal tears are continuously produced to keep the eye moist. Reflexive tears protect the eyes from allergens or any type of irritant.

Then, there are emotional tears. Dogs don’t share these with us. Emotional tears begin when we (humans) are overwhelmed, frustrated, or generally emotional. A dog’s tear ducts do not allow them to produce emotional tears. But, even though dogs don’t cry ‘tears’ when they’re upset, they still have their own way of letting us know.

Why Does My Dog Look Like She’s Crying?

If your dog looks as if she is crying, this could be due to a medical condition. The causes of ‘dog tears’ include the following:

  • Allergies: Allergies can cause a dog’s eye(s) to water… just like us. If your dog has allergies, your veterinarian should be contacted so you’re able to determine what she or he is allergic to.
  • Blocked Tear Ducts: If your dog’s tear ducts are blocked, you may notice what appears to be tears leaving his eyes.
  • Scratched Cornea: If your dog is active, there’s a possibility she may be ‘crying’ due to a scratched cornea. If your dog has a scratched cornea, she might also be blinking excessively.
  • Irritants: There could be a speck of dirt in your dog’s eye, or some other type of irritant, causing tears.

DO DOGS UNDERSTAND WHEN WE CRY?

Yes, research has found dogs respond to our tears. They know when we’re upset based on our facial expressions and the tone of our voice.

Research has gone so far to say many dogs can understand how we’re feeling without even seeing us in person. They’re able to tell by a picture.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Even though it might look as if your dog is sad, and crying emotional tears, your dog isn’t truly ‘crying’ the way do. If you notice tears coming from your dog’s eyes, make an appointment with your veterinarian to find out the cause.

 

Did You Know Dogs Can Detect Cancer?

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Contributed by Amber L. Drake

Did you know dogs can smell up to 100,000 times more acutely than we can as humans? Dogs have approximately 300 million olfactory receptors compared to our six million. This incredible sense of smell has allowed for amazing discoveries.

Canine research is currently focused on a dog’s ability to detect cancer cells in humans. Why? We, as scientists, have discovered dogs are able to detect cancer at stage zero. Stage zero cancer detection could save many lives. Dogs may be able to detect cancer cells before our modern technology is able.

The Miracle Dogs Can Save Lives

A dog named Lucy has been the leading force in this field. Lucy was originally bred to be a hunting dog, but she was ‘kicked out’ of hunting class because her trainer said she was not able to pay attention.

Lucy was continuously attracted to various sorts of smells. Now, the dog who was kicked out of training class, can sniff out bladder, kidney, and prostate cancer.

What’s her success rate in sniffing out cancer? She has a 95% success rate. That’s impressive.

She’s not the only cancer-sniffing dog. A dog at the Penn Vet Working Dog Center, named McBaine, is also a powerful force in this field. McBaine is one of three cancer-detecting dogs in the center. His most recent accomplishment involves sniffing out ovarian cancer simply from smelling various vials of blood.

Ovarian cancer is an aggressive cancer… often not detected until it has progressed to late stages. And, here’s McBaine, with the ability to tell its cancer just by smelling the blood sample.

How We Train Dogs to Be Scientists

This is a common question. How could we possibly train a dog to work with us in a lab? And, actually enjoy the work he does in the lab?

Positive reinforcement is the key here. The dogs are heavily praised when they answer a question correctly, and provided with a toy, or a treat.

The main method used… keeping it fun! That simple. Dogs love mental stimulation. In their mind, they’re essentially playing games all day long with people they love.

The dogs kept at this center, The Penn Vet Working Dog Center, have a 90% success rate is sniffing out cancer cells.

The Italian Ministry of Defense

Another organization, the Italian Ministry of Defense, trained two German Shepherd dogs to detect prostate cancer.

The organization collected 677 samples of urine; 320 samples from men diagnosed with prostate cancer and 357 from men without cancer.

The German Shepherd dogs were able to identify urine samples with cancerous cells correctly 99% of the time.

A Professor from Harvard Medical School outlined the accuracy as being better than any tests currently available for prostate cancer detection.

Detecting Other Health Conditions

The dog’s abilities don’t stop at cancer detection. They’re able to detect many other serious health problems.

Narcolepsy, for example, is a brain disorder which affects a person’s sleep cycle. A person with narcolepsy could be in the middle of an activity and immediately fall asleep. Dogs are able to pick up a scent prior to a narcoleptic attack. Service dogs are used to assist those with narcolepsy to ensure they do not injure themselves when an attack occurs. Dogs are able to warn the individual up to 5 minutes prior to an attack.

Those who are diabetic may also have a desire for a service dog. Dogs are able to detect when blood sugar is dropping or spiking. There is a particular sugar present in a human’s breath; dogs are sensitive to this smell. When the dog notices a person’s blood sugar is abnormal, they provide him or her with a warning which often gives the person enough time to test their blood sugar and take their insulin.

Although there are several others, the final health condition dogs are helpful with is stress levels. This may not sound as serious as the others; however, stress can lead to serious health conditions if a high level of stress is present over a period of time. Even if we do not appear to be stressed, dogs can smell the hormones released by our bodies during difficult situations. In these situations, dogs are able to alert their owners to take deep breaths. In addition to this, petting a dog actually releases oxytocin (the ‘happy’ hormone) through both his and our bodies. This particularly assists those with PTSD.

A Long Road

We still have a long road ahead of us regarding research but we, as researchers, are learning more and more every day. Dogs have saved many lives and with continuing research have the ability to save many, many more.

Exercise Tips

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Contributed by Amberly Lewis of Bones and Blog

The best type of exercise is when they don’t even realize they’re exercising. I like to mask working-out by doing things I know we’ll all enjoy such as: 

  • Walk on the beach – that soft sand is sure to get everyone’s thighs burning
  • Hike in nature – The fresh air is so rejuvenating, and dodging the fallen limbs and branches is a sure way to you alert and on your toes
  • Spend some extra time at an off-leash dog park – sometimes the mere act of a new doggy friend is exerting
  • Go for a swim – This is a great way to keep cool, and still get some exercise
  • Dog + Yoga = Doga – this will not only strengthen the bond with your dog, but also help decrease stress and anxiety in your dog (great for small dogs)

Much like with humans, there is no “right” way to exercise when it comes to your dog. There are a number of variables to consider like your dogs breed and size (snout and other factors that affect the breathing), weight (you don’t want to over exert), personality (some dogs are just lazy, happens’), and build (leg size/muscle mass). Here are some of the best types of exercises based on some of these factors.

Large breed (in height and girth) | I.e. Great Danes, Bernese, Greyhounds – Brisk Walks for about 20-30 minutes or less a day. Long walks or hikes can be hard on their joints.

Large breed (standard snout)| I.e. Pointers, Ridgebacks – Running will help these dogs stay in shape. These breeds can endure up to 3 miles after their first year.

Large breed (short snout) | I.e. Mastiffs, Boxers, and Chows - Brisk Walks for about 20-30 minutes a day. These quick and untimely walks will help these types of dogs avoid overheating and over-exerting.

Water lovers (med sized dogs who can obtain much of their exercise through water activities) | I.e. Labradors, Golden Retrievers, Springer Spaniels, Poodles – 20-30 minutes a day in a clean body of water (deeper than a bath tub)

Small breed (short legs, long backs) I.e. Basset hounds, Dachshunds – Short brisk walks, try to avoid jumping or playing fetch. 

Small breed (standard snout) | I.e. Chihuahuas, Yorkie’s – These dogs are known sniffing machines! Hide their treat or favorite toy and let them hunt for it.

Small breed (short snout) | I.e. Pugs, Bulldogs, Terriers, Shih Tzus – Create an obstacle course or a small obtainable goal that requires movement. Have them jump over a roll of paper towels to win a treat!

A few things to have on hand while exercising with your dog

  • Water
  • Poop bags
  • Leash/Harness

There are other aspects to be considered when exercising aside from just weight loss/maintenance. Here are a few more reasons why pet-exercise is so important.

  • Removes Toxins – this is powered by muscle movement to the lymphatic regions
  • Brain stimulation – as little as 20 minutes of exercise a day has shown to increase information processing and memory function
  • Slows aging
  • Sensory enhancement – exercise increases circulation to the ears and eyes
  • Strengthens bones and muscles – exercise can decrease the chances for brittle bones in your dog’s upcoming years, this will reduce chances of diagnosis such as osteoporosis
  • Improves behavior – getting that little extra bit of energy and endurance out every day will help tremendously with keeping your dog’s behavior and energy consistent; some may compare this to a runner’s high

Like I mentioned earlier, there is no right way to exercise. Anything from fetch in your own backyard to taking the long way home from dinner can greatly benefit your dog’s physicality and overall health. You just have to look :) 

Plus, summer brings so many more opportunities!


 

CBD Glazed Dog Treat Recipe

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Contributed by @SorshaMorava

For the Cookie: 

— 3 cups whole wheat flour

— 1/3 cup nutritional yeast

— 1 cup + 1 tbsp vegetable broth (low sodium)

 

  Cookie ingredients

For the glaze:

— 1 tbsp coconut oil

— 1/4 cup peanut butter

— 2 full droppers of CanneCanine 500 Hemp CBD Oil

  Glaze ingredients

Preheat oven 340 degrees fahrenheit.

In a bowl mix together flour and nutritional yeast, then slowly mix in vegetable broth.

You might have to use your hands to get all of the ingredients mixed together.

Once you have everything mixed together, spread some flour out on a flat surface. Then put the ball of dough on that floured surface and start rolling it out. You can roll it out as thick or thin as you’d like, but I suggest the thinner the better! 

Now you can take cookie cutters or even cut the shapes of the cookies out yourself and start cutting into the dough. 

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Then place cookies on a lightly greased (coconut oil works great) cookie sheet. Put cookies in the oven for 20 minutes. Once the time is up, turn off the oven and leave the cookies in their for a few hours until they fully dry out.

In the mean time, mix together all of the glaze ingredients. 

After a few hours, take the cookies out and lightly drizzle the glaze over the cookies. The glaze needs to solidify so pop it in the freeze for a few minutes. 

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Make sure you store the canine cookies in a dry, cool place. And serve to your pup whenever they’re good or whenever they need some extra nutrients! 

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Jumping the Crate Training Hurdles

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Contributed by Amber Drake

Many of you likely cringe at the thought of crate training. And, it’s not because you are against crate training, but because you just aren’t sure how to get started. Or, maybe you just don’t get why crate training would help your new puppy.

At first glance, crate training (to most people) appears to extremely uncomfortable, and a bit like putting your new pup in puppy jail. Crates are so small, there’s not much space for our pups to move around. They can’t walk in there. So, why would it be comfortable for them? We sure wouldn’t be comfortable sleeping in a confined area.

Here’s the thing… there’s magic to the crate. That’s why it’s comfortable to our little pups. What’s the magic? Dogs, by instinct, search for cozy spaces to become their ‘den.’ Their dens are their safe spot; their place to escape the world.  Their crate is an area that’s 100% their own. 

Jumping the Crate Training Hurdles

Your puppy doesn’t look at the crate and automatically think, “yes, this is my spot.” Usually, they choose their own. Instead, we have picked her den for her.

At first glance, your puppy (or dog) might be a little afraid of the crate. Don’t panic. This reaction is completely normal. After your pup becomes accustomed to the crate, he will love his new, cozy sleeping space.

Of course, crate training isn’t a requirement for being a loving, responsible pet parent. But, it’s worth considering.

In addition to helping with potty training, crate training can help reduce separation anxiety. And, if your dog encounters a stressful situation, the crate allows her to escape to her own world which assists in preventing severe behavioral issues.

Make Crate Training Positive

Being certain to connect the crate to a positive ‘thing’ or experience is important. If your pup connects the crate with a treat, praise, and/or a toy, he will be more likely to want to go into the crate on his own.

Ensuring the connection is positive also increases the level of trust they have with you. They form a good emotional connection from this experience.

To make this experience positive, don’t immediately jump into locking your pup in her crate. Be sure he is properly (and slowly) introduced to the crate first. Keep the crate open and put your pup’s favorite treat as far back in the crate as it will go.

Keep the crate door open to begin. This part is important and must be emphasized.

After a few attempts, if your puppy appears to be comfortable walking in the crate on her own, you can now close the door. Only close the door for as long as it takes her to finish eating her treat (or chewing on her toy). Then, open the crate back up.

Gradually increase the amount of time your dog is in the crate. Leave the door closed for longer and longer periods… increasing only by a few minutes at a time.

What if my Dog is Still Uncomfortable?

What if the above step gets your pup somewhat comfortable… but she’s still not fully comfortable yet? Some dogs are perfectly content, and happy, with their crate using the above step. Others need more reassurance.

If your dog is one who isn’t comfortable yet, we move on to desensitizing your puppy. This process could take an additional few days, or another few weeks.

Continue the process above, but only keep the crate locked for 10 seconds at a time or so. Then, gradually increase only be 5-10 seconds each time and work your way up to minutes.

Do not leave your puppy in the crate alone until he’s fully comfortable. We don’t want him to be miserable in there. We want him to be comfortable and feel safe.

How Big Should the Crate Be?

This is one of the parts of the puzzle where dog lovers get frustrated. How big should the crate be? How do you know if it’s big enough? And, how do you know it’s not too small?

Your puppy (or dog) should be able to lie down, move around a bit to get comfortable, and turn around. The crate should not be big enough to have a ton of extra room.

Dogs don’t like to use the potty where they sleep (by instinct). If the crate is big enough to have ‘walking room’ or an extra little area that’s not taken up by anything, she is likely to use the potty in the crate. We don’t want that to happen. Part of the reason we crate train is to help with potty-training, right? So, that would defeat the purpose of the crate.

Just Some General Guidelines

There are some general guidelines I would like to share with you.

1.     Never leave your puppy in the crate by himself if he’s uncomfortable.

2.     Always leave something for your pup to do in the crate- treat, toy, puzzle, etc.

3.     Never leave your puppy in her crate longer than 2-3 hours… especially a young pup. Young puppies can’t hold their bladder. And, if they do, could end up developing a urinary tract infection.

4.     Always take your puppy (or dog) potty before she goes in her crate.

5.     Always exercise with your dog before he goes into his crate.

The Bottom Line on Crate Training

The most important ‘thing’ to remember about crate training is… make sure the crate is a positive experience and be patient. Patience, you will find, is key to nearly everything you do with your dog. Remember, the way we want them to act and what their instincts tell them is completely different.

 

 

Tips Before your Dog Beach Trip

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Contributed by Amberly from Bones and Blogs

Warm weather is upon and that means lots of outdoor activities. With the temperature rising it only makes sense to look for activities to keep you and your dog cool. Being a local to Jacksonville, FL – one of our favorite past times is attending summer beach trips. So I thought I would share a few things I keep in mind when taking my dogs to the beach!

1. Always check for dog friendly beaches. Every beach has their own set of rules when it comes to pets. Some do not allow pets at all, some do not allow pets between certain hours, and some are specifically there for your pet! It’s good to check out some reviews before planning your beach day.

2. Find a spot near the shade. With all that fur your pet can easily get over heated. So when arriving at the beach be sure to find a spot under a big tree or umbrella. While yes, the cool ocean waves will help to cool down their internal temp – it’s good for them to have a place to escape the sun. And keep in mind how hot that sand can be on their paws!

3. Water, water, and more water! Keep your pet hydrated. I would recommend making sure your pet has access to fresh drinking water 100% of the time while at the beach. Keep the water covered under your cool shaded spot so your pet can hydrate at their convenience. I usually do this by packing a gallon of fresh water and portable drinking bowls.

4. Keep your pet entertained. Pack a Frisbee, a big chew bone, or their favorite squeaky toy! I’ve come to find that when my dogs have their favorite items around they are much less likely to get into trouble by wandering over to the sand dunes, private property, or to other beach goers. With that being said – pack a leash!

5. Since you will be in a public space – be sure that your pet is current on all their vaccinations.

6. Stay close to your dog at all times. Unfortunately when going to the beach there is more to fear than the obvious, sharks. Also keep an eye out for stingrays and jelly fish… We have encountered many a jelly fish simply washed up onto shore.

7. Dog sunscreen. This is a product I wasn’t even aware of until my experience as a dog mom called for it. Naturally my Labrador retriever loves the water and the outdoors. I began to notice that the skin right above his nose, where the fur is very thin, would become bright pink after these outings. Then one day it hit me, a doggy sunburn! I felt awful that I hadn’t noticed or even considered this notion before. Ever since then I have been prepared – my favorite go to brand for dog sunscreen is Burt’s Bees. If I cannot find sunscreen specific for my dogs – I will go for the baby safe brands.

8. In the event your dog does return with a sunburn, here are a few remedies that may help. CBD dog oil, which has been known to decrease pain and ease skin irritations. Luke-arm oatmeal bath, this will help soothe the skin. 100% all natural aloe. 

9. If you have a smaller pup, your pet isn’t a strong swimmer, or your pet is timid of water – it wouldn’t hurt to put them in a doggy swim vest. This will increase visibility, and better ensure the safety of your pet. With this being said, do not force your pet into the water. If anything maybe try taking the lead and see if your pet follows.

10. Time management. While we all love the relaxation a beach day can bring, I cannot deny that it’s often equally as draining. The sun takes a lot out of you, as does the loading and unloading of all your beach necessities! Keep this in mind when you have your pet at the beach with you and do not let your trip exceed more than a few hours. Take note of how your dog is acting. Some signs of heat stroke include: rapid panting, bright red tongue, thick saliva, weakness, vomiting, and diarrhea.

I hope these tips were helpful! Wishing you high tides, good vibes, and wagging tails!

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Introducing Your New Dog to Your Home

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Contributed by Amber Drake

Bringing Your New Dog Home

The first few days in your home are a special, yet anxious, time for you and your new dog. Your new dog will likely be confused about where he is. He won’t immediately connect your home with his home. It’s a completely different environment than what she knows (whether she came from a shelter or a family- it’s still different). It’s up to you to ensure she has the smoothest transition possible.

Before Your Bring Her Home

Before you bring your new dog home, you should determine which area of your home your dog will spend the most time. Then, dog-proof that area and place the crate somewhere comfortable (if you’re crate training). Usually, the kitchen works best. It’s easy to clean up in case of any accidents. Their knowledge of house-training may be lost during a time of great stress like this.

If you plan to crate-train your dog, the crate should be set up before you bring your dog home. Don’t forget to place a mattress of some kind in the crate with them. The type of mattress you should have varies based on the breed of dog you are bringing home, and the age of the dog. Be certain to do proper research on this before bringing your new dog home.

Now, dog-proofing. Dog-proofing your home is critical to keep your dog safe. Tape off any loose wires. Place household cleaners, medications, and other chemicals up high. If you have plants on the floor, do some research and see which plants dogs can and can’t be near.

Finally, have their collar and leash ready to go. On the collar, there should be identification tags already attached. If your dog doesn’t already have a microchip, this may also be something to consider. The microchip isn’t a GPS device, but if your dog were to ever get lost, the microchip would be scanned and an identification code unique to your dog containing all your details would be available.

On the First Day

The first day home could be extremely stressful or overwhelmingly exciting for your dog. Either way, give your dog time to acclimate to your home before you allow any ‘strangers’ to come over. Even if you think your dog is doing wonderful with the transition- one new event could spark stress in the first week. If you have children, show your children the appropriate way to approach a dog.

When you pick up your new dog, don’t forget to ask what she ate that day (and the type of food). If you feed your new dog a completely different food, this could lead to an upset stomach and diarrhea. We don’t want that. An upset stomach could make the transition even more stressful for both him and us.

If you would like to feed a different brand/type of food, do so over a one-week period adding in the new food to their old food slowly. Watch for any signs of stomach upset or loose stools. If you do notice any symptoms, lessen the amount of new food and extend the transition time.

When you arrive home, immediately show your dog where the potty area is and softly say “potty-potty” or similar. Be patient during this time. Even if your dog is fully potty-trained, don’t forget there could be accidents. Your dog may not act like he has to use to the bathroom while he’s outside, then come in and immediately have an accident. Don’t panic, this is a completely normal behavior when being introduced to a new home.

A routine should be put in place immediately. Structure is extremely helpful to a dog adjusting to a new home, and your resident dogs as well if they don’t already have a routine. Feeding, potty-time, and play/exercise, should have an approximate time each day. If the time changes by a half hour occasionally, that’s okay.

For the first few days of your dog being home, try to be as calm and quiet as possible. Limiting excitement during this time will help her adjust. And, it will give you time to get to know your dog better. Take this time to build a foundation for the bond you will share.

Training should also begin immediately. But, after the first week, you can increase the amount of physical and mental stimulation your dog is receiving. Training also helps a dog settle in further and strengthens the bond you are building.

Introducing Your New Dog to Another Dog

If you have a resident dog, introduce your new dog to your resident dog outside in a neutral area. If you have more than one resident dog, introduce one at a time. Don’t rush the introduction. Each dog should be on a leash, and each leash should be loose to allow the dogs to get to know one another.

After the outside introduction, you can bring your new dog inside and do the in-home introduction (if all goes well outside). If you bring your new dog inside immediately without the outside introduction, this could spark a huge list of problems. Keep each interaction between your new dog and your resident dog(s) short and as pleasant as possible. If you see any sign of tension, immediately separate the dogs and try again an hour or so later.

Don’t leave all the dogs alone together until you know it’s safe to do so. Watching your dogs’ body language can help you understand when it’s safe.

The Bottom Line

The most important take-a-way here involves patience. Be patient with your new dog’s behaviors, training levels, and the bond you are establishing. Some dogs adjust quickly and form a bond immediately. Others take more time. Commit as much time as possible to getting to know your new dog while spending time with your resident dogs. Watch your new dog’s body language to understand what she is communicating to you and others.

4 Steps to Successful Leash-Walking

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Contributed by Amber Drake

There’s a common misconception that dogs automatically understand how to walk on a leash. But, this is a skill that needs to be learned by your dog. Dogs are not ‘natural leash walkers.’ Fortunately, this is a simple skill to teach in most cases.

The most effective way to train your dog to walk on a leash is step-by-step. Take small steps to acclimate your dog to this ‘unnatural’ behavior.

Step 1: Introducing the Collar and Leash

You should begin this process by allowing your dog to become familiar with the collar/harness and the leash. Place the collar or harness on your dog, then clip the leash to your dog’s collar, but don’t hold onto the leash.

Allow your dog to wear the collar and leash throughout the house while giving her treats. Using this step, your dog will associate the collar and leash with treats and happiness.

Step 2: Understanding the ‘Come’ Command

The next step is teaching the ‘come’ command. If he already knows the ‘come’ command, that’s perfect. We’re ahead of the game. If not, this is a skill that must be taught prior to walking on a leash outside (for safety precautions).

In this scenario, let’s say your dog already knows the command. Say ‘come’ and then reward your dog with a treat (with the collar and leash on).

While he’s still heading your way, begin walking backwards and provide the reward (treat, kibble) when he gets to you. If you have a puppy, this process will take more patience. Puppies have very short attention spans. But remember, patience is key.

Step 3: Practice Leash-Walking Inside

At this point in the process, your dog should understand how to come to you… and feel comfortable with the leash and collar on (from Steps 1 and 2). You can now practice walking on the leash in your home.

While you’re walking on the leash, reward your dog often. You may want to provide kibble in this step, so your dog doesn’t go over her treat limit. If you feed your dog too many treats, she could easily become obese. And, that leads to a range of other problems we simply don’t want.

Step 4: Let’s Go Outside

If your dog did well with steps 1-3, you can now go for a leash walk outside and test out her freshly-learned skills.

Don’t get upset if your dog struggles on her first few walks outside. Even though your dog has mastered steps 1-3, you may still face challenges in this step.

There will be all kinds of sounds, sights, and smells your dog may have never smelled before (especially if you have a puppy). And, if you have an adult dog, they may still smell, see, or hear things they haven’t heard before and want to explore just as much as a puppy.

At first, keep the walks short.

We know you want to go on long walks, but this takes time to master.

If your puppy or dog becomes distracted on your walk, re-direct his attention to you and continue walking.

What Should I Do?

There could be a few problems you run into. Don’t worry. Problems with leash-walking are common, and they’re generally easy to fix.

The first problem… what if my dog pulls on the leash? If your dog starts pulling, you should stand completely still and refuse to move until your dog comes back to you. You should never jerk the leash, or drag your dog, as these actions could severely hurt your dog.

Another note to add, if your dog is a puller, a front-hook harness or head halter is recommended as these are designed for dogs who pull on the leash.

The next common problem… what if she won’t stop barking? Some dogs have a barking issue when they’re going on their first walks. They aren’t sure what’s going on in the world surrounding them and may feel compelled to bark at the unknown (strangers, cats, other dogs, etc.). You can reduce this behavior by exercising with your dog before their walk.

Then, there’s the constant sniffing. Dogs want to smell everything. If your dog wants to stop at every step, you might be giving them ‘too much leash.’ Retractable leashes are not recommended for this reason… especially while training. Of course, there are times when it’s okay for your dog to sniff and explore. And, as your walk with your dog, she will learn when it’s appropriate and when it’s not.

The Bottom Line on Leash Walking

The most important thing to take out of this article is… be patient and understanding. Learning how to walk on a leash is a process for your dog. And, it’s not a natural behavior. Just like going ‘potty outside’ must be learned, leash walking is a process that we desire as humans that must be learned.

If you’re having a hard time getting your dog to walk on a leash properly, you should consult a Canine Behaviorist or Dog Trainer for additional tips.

Perfect for Summer Pupsicles: Apple + Chicken Pup Pops

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Contributed by Amberly Lewis from Bones and Blogs

What you will need

1.     Dixie style small paper cups

2.     Measuring cup

3.     ½ cup of homemade unsalted chicken broth (see steps for homemade broth below)

4.     ½ cup of water

5.     1 Gala apple

6.     Rawhide sticks (firm, like a pretzel or popsicle stick)

Directions

1.     Combine your chicken broth, and water into your measuring cup

2.     Wash and slice apples into bite size pieces – this is open to interpretation depending on the size of your dog. For mine, I cut them long ways/hotdog style and thin.

3.     Drop a few of the apple slices into your paper cups.

4.     Then fill up your apple cups about halfway using our water and chicken broth concoction.

5.     Stick your firm rawhide sticks into the center of the cup

6.     Freeze for about 3 hours

Homemade Chicken Broth

1.     Place your leftover chicken carcass in a large pot and cover with water.

2.     Let simmer for 90 minutes

3.     Strain broth and discard all the remaining bones and meat

4.     Let cool

This pupsicle recipe spoke to me for a number of reasons. My dogs love anything chicken, apples, or peanut butter! So a summer treat with 2/3 of their favorite ingredients could not have been more perfect.

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Additionally, it only takes 6 items and 6 steps to complete these delicious and healthy pup-pops! These pupsicles would be perfect to serve to pups in attendance at a summer barbeque, post-puppy beach day, or a doggy birthday party! We often give these to our pups after a particularly heated day at the dog park or as a post-hike snack. It gives them a chance to cool down, and clam down after the excitement of the day.

This frozen treat will help keep your pup cool in the summer days to come, provide lasting entertainment, as well as provide them with nutrients and all their favorite flavors! I was sure this would be a summer treat my dogs would love. I hope your pups love it too!

Can CBD Help My Dog with Cancer?

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Contributed by Amber Drake

When your dog is suffering from cancer, watching them fight this horrid condition can become overwhelming. And, it’s equally as frustrating as we can’t help as much as we would like to. Thankfully, there continues to be more and more research released regarding alternative treatments. One potential alternative treatment you may want to investigate is CBD oil.

Before we go on further into this article, it’s important to note that CBD oil isn’t a cure for cancer in dogs. We wish it could be the cure, but unfortunately that’s not the case. But, this doesn’t mean it can’t still help your dog.

And, a little disclaimer here, if your dog has cancer make sure you discuss this option with your veterinarian before implementing this into your dog’s routine. If your family veterinarian is unsure about alternative treatments, you can request a visit with a veterinarian who specializes in alternative medicine.

What Exactly is… The “C” word?

The basic definition of cancer is abnormal growth of cells in the body. The abnormal cells in the body grow uncontrollably (we’ll talk more about this in a few moments) and begin destroying the body’s ability to function properly.

Cancer is extremely common in dogs, approximately one of two dogs will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. The types of cancer dogs are diagnosed with includes:

Skin Cancer: Skin cancer is common in dogs, but it is usually benign.

Mammary Cancer: Female dogs are prone to breast cancer. Breeds most susceptible to mammary cancer include Poodles, Dachshunds, and Spaniels.

Head and Neck Cancers: Dogs are prone to developing mouth cancer. This type of cancer must be treated immediately and aggressively. Dog breeds most susceptible to developing this type of cancer include Golden Retrievers, Irish Setters, German Shepherds, and Scottish Terriers.

Lymphoma: Lymphoma is cancer of the lymph nodes. Dog owners usually catch this cancer once an enlarged lymph node is apparent. Lymphoma can be an aggressive cancer and should be treated immediately following diagnosis. Breeds prone to Lymphoma include Dachshund, Pomeranian, Chihuahua, and Brittany Spaniel.

Testicular Cancer: Testicular cancer is common in dogs, particularly dogs who have retained testicles.

Bone Cancer: Bone cancer is common in large-breed and senior dogs. The most common area bone cancer occurs is in the leg bones. You may notice unusual swelling, lameness, or pain in dogs who have bone cancer. Certain breeds are more susceptible to bone cancer than others (Great Dane, Saint Bernard, Golden Retriever, Doberman Pinscher, Irish Setter).

Brain Cancer: Brain tumors develop in the tissue of the brain. They’re generally slow-growing and not found until symptoms begin. Fortunately, this type of cancer is rare in dogs. There are certain breeds at an increased risk including Doberman Pincher, Scottish Terrier, Olde English Sheepdog, and Golden Retriever.

How Can CBD Oil Help?

CBD oil helps to manage inflammation, decrease pain, manage seizures, and stimulate the appetite. Each of these benefits may sound relatively small when it comes to the full picture. But, each of these can result in your dog feeling much better. The anti-inflammatory and anti-pain effects from the CBD oil may help your dog feel more comfortable. Maintaining a healthy appetite is critical to your dog’s strength.

CBD has also been shown to stop cancer cells from growing and increasing the death rate of tumor cells. CBD kills cells by helping the immune system and blocks their ability to produce energy.

Cancer cells are different than your dog’s normal body cells because they don’t die on their own. Normal cells that are old or damaged have a “control system” that causes their death. This process of cell suicide is known as apoptosis. Cancer cells do not have the ability to induce apoptosis. The damaged/mutated cells just continue to grow and grow… which forms tumors. CBD has been shown to ‘turn on’ apoptosis and stop the growth of tumors.

CBD oil can also help increase the efficacy of conventional cancer treatments (chemotherapy, radiation). Researchers have found combining chemotherapy with cannabinoids had better results than using chemo alone. Researchers believe combining chemo and CBD can also reduce those terrible side effects, like nausea, from the chemotherapy treatments.

Testimonials Mean the World

Testimonials mean the world to us as dog lovers. We want to check out what others are saying about the product, right? Of course. That’s why we have compiled a few of CannaCanine’s CBD oil testimonials below:

“I have been using your CBD oil with Judah, my 13 year old Springer Spaniel, as a part of his natural treatment program for a skin cancer on his ear. This treatment includes prayer, faith, CBD oil, a healthy raw diet, and a couple other essential oils and cream. Since hearing of CBD oil, we have tried a couple different brands and have found yours to be of great quality. I have found that CBD oil applied topically has greatly helped with minimizing and controlling the affected area, while giving him a dropper by mouth each day has helped him to be at ease. Some of his lumps have even shrunk drastically! Thank the Lord!! Judah is such a good boy and deserves the best treatment. This is why I use CannaCanine! And it is awesome to hear that it is affective for anxiety too because I can recommend it to my training clients as another way in helping their dogs relax.” -Judah, Skin Cancer

“Rudy has bone cancer which puts a lot of strain on his system. It is painful and very exhausting as it drains his energy. However CBD oil has helped him increase his energy level and take away the inflammation in his leg. It also helps to relieve the pain caused by the cancer. CBD has made a huge improvement in the quality of his life! Rudy can now enjoy his days better in peace and comfort through CBD.” -Rudy, Bone Cancer

The Bottom Line on CBD and Cancer

There’s some promising research regarding CBD and cancer in dogs and humans. Researchers are continuing to study the benefits of CBD oil, and more research is expected to be released in the future. In the meantime, there are benefits researchers have found to help your dog already (reduced inflammation, etc.).

Don’t forget to talk to your veterinarian prior to implementing CBD into your dog’s routine. Once your veterinarian gives you the ‘go-ahead,’ visit CannaCanine’s store here and use code ‘YEAR’ for 30% off!

CBD Oil and Your Dog's Anxiety

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Submitted by Amber Drake

Does your dog become extremely anxious during a thunderstorm? Do all those loud noises, bangs, and flashes of light get to her? Does she run and hide when she’s feeling anxious? Does she become extremely stressed when there’s a lot going on in the house?

If so, CannaCanine’s CBD Oil could be the best solution for your dog’s situational anxiety. Let me tell you why.

How Does CBD Help Anxiety in Dogs?

We have talked about this in earlier articles. But, Cannabidiol (CBD) has been a solution for our anxiety (as humans) and we have now moved to helping our dog’s anxiety.

What makes us think that since CBD oil helps our anxiety, it will help our dogs as well? As you know from CannaCanine’s website and our past articles, dogs have an endocannabinoid system like ours (as humans). Basically, this means the receptors in their bodies that control their anxiety levels are like the ones found in our bodies.

The receptors in the endocannabinoid system are responsible for maintaining our anxiety and stress levels. If our dog is feeling anxious, the endocannabinoid receptors aren’t communicating with each other very well to keep the dog calm. When CBD enters the body, the receptors work better amongst one another which results in a release of tension.

What Type of Anxiety Does CBD Help With?

In the dog world, there are two types of anxiety your dog could experience; behavioral and situational. And, it’s entirely possible for your dog to experience both types.

The most common type of anxiety experienced by dogs is situational. If your dog has situational anxiety, their anxiety may be heightened when they encounter certain experiences. Common examples of situational anxiety include: travel, thunderstorms, fireworks, unfamiliar people in the home, too many people in the home.

Dogs who have behavioral anxiety most commonly experience separation anxiety or aggression. In these cases, CBD can help calm the dog so they’re able to focus, but they will need a Canine Behaviorist to resolve the problem.

Situational anxiety may also require a Canine Behaviorist but isn’t generally an issue where a Canine Behaviorist is a necessity. Prior to contacting a Canine Behaviorist for your dog’s separation anxiety, you can try CBD oil and discover the results you have. You could notice a significant difference in your dog’s situational anxiety simply by administering CannaCanine’s CBD oil. Then, you wouldn’t need to hire a Canine Behaviorist. You could provide CBD oil for your dog before an ‘episode’ is about to occur so your dog’s brain can let them know all is okay.

What Do Testimonials Say?

When I am looking at products, before I read the description, the first place I tend to look is the Testimonials Page. If the testimonials aren’t good, it’s not likely the product will work for my dog. Or, at least it’s less likely, right?

We have compiled a few here for you to read through. But, feel free to look for yourself, too.

“Scheff is a rescued bichon-poodle from Napa and was so grateful to be taken off the streets and into the loving home of his dog mama. Being a rescue comes with some separation anxiety, so Scheff can get a little anxious any time he's about to be left alone or heading into a new environment. He becomes extremely clingy and whines whenever his human is not within eyesight. When traveling, we mix a little bit of CBD oil with some peanut butter an hour before we leave. The result is smooth sailing for both Scheff and his mom with a chill pup ready to take on the world!” -Scheff

“Lyla is a sixteen-year-old Jack Russell Terrier who suffers from numerous health issues related to old age and anxiety. There was a rapid decline in her health and demeanor over the last couple of months. She would constantly shake due to stress when I left the house and even when I was home. Lyla used to be at the door ready to me with her tail wagging, alert, and wanting to be let out. Instead, I would come home to find she had urinated all over the floor. Her energy levels were too low for her to even get up and say hi. Lyla was raised in an Italian household so naturally she loved food. Carrots, bananas and pasta being among her favorites. She would hardly touch these foods due to the loss of her appetite. With no appetite, she was lethargic and slept all day. Fetch was of little interest to her as this required too much effort. Even when I asked her to give me paw for a treat she wouldn't be interested... in trick nor treat. Our friends at CannaCanine were beginning to bake CBD dog treats and we started to give them to Lyla. The CBD treats reignited her fiery Jack Russell temperament and spirit in just over a month. At first, it was the little things I noticed like her greeting me at the door and the sudden return her of appetite. She began to bark again to be let out and would demand for food and treats! Lyla was back to chasing squirrels and barking at intruders that threatened her backyard domain. She doesn't shake or have anxiety anymore but seeks out affection and her tail is back to wagging happily. CBD has helped Lyla rejuvenate herself so she can enjoy her senior years in comfort...much to the dismay of neighborhood squirrels!” -Lyla

The Bottom Line

We suggest administering CannaCanine’s CBD oil about 30 minutes before an expected ‘episode.’ The oil is easy to administer… give your dog a treat with the oil or place the oil directly in her mouth.

If you think your dog would be more interested in a treat, CannaCanine has Verde Gluten & Egg Free CBD Dog Treats available in their Shop.

You might be asking if the treats are equally as healthy as their CBD oil. Yes! They are… and we happily list the ingredients right on our website (organic honey, organic banana, organic peanut butter, organic unsweetened applesauce, organic rice flour, organic rosemary extract, organic flaxseed, organic hemp CBD oil).

Take a stroll through the shop to see the other helpful products today!

 

DIY Dog Bed

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Contributed by Amberly Lewis from Bones and Blogs

I should preface this by saying that I have purchased many a dog bed for my pups! Plushy, elevated, waterproof – you name it, they’ve chewed it! I was starting to think they just disliked comfort. When one fateful Saturday last summer I got a little creative and a little inspired by the miscellaneous items I had just lying around my home…

The best part is there are only 4 items needed to successfully make this dog bed!

-        An old tire

-        Dog bed/pillow/blanket

-        Outdoor spray paint (color of your choosing)

-        Felt furniture pads

As prior stated, my dogs loved (past tense, woohoo!) to chew on their dog beds, so a bed made of a durable rubber tire would be just the solution I was looking for.

Step 1

You’ll need to wash/clean the tire with soap and an old scrub brush. Paint tends to not stick to dirt, so removing as much dirt from the treads of the tire will make all the difference when applying your spray paint!

Step 2

After your tire is dry, it’s time to apply your spray paint. For this item I chose, Rust-Oleum X2 Ultra Cover. Which is less than $4 at your local Wal-Mart. Be sure to select paint for outdoor/rubber items. I went with black because I figured it would be easiest, as I was still uncertain how this project was going to turn out. With this being said I have seen other DIY dog tire beds- in pinks, greens, yellows, etc. - turn out awesome. So live your life!

Step 3

After your paint has dried, add your felt furniture pads to the bottom of your tire all the way around. This will prevent the paint from rubbing off and transferring onto your floor.

Step 4

Take your old dog bed/pillow/blanket and stuff it in the center of the tire. Keep in mind, the weight of your dog may force the stuffing to the bottom of the tire or onto the floor, so the bigger and fluffier the better!  I used a large plush dog bed we had on hand that unfortunately developed a large rip…. We can all guess how that happened. I faced the rip on the inside wall of the tire and no one was the wiser! Especially my pups who are now enjoying relaxing in their new, super-durable, homemade dog bed!

4 household items, and 4 easy steps is all it takes to get a durable dog bed for all your heavy chewers!

 

Jovo

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Jovo is our 14 year old husky mix. He has been having small seizures for about a year now, but recently they’ve increased in frequency. I talked to our vet who said they were of an unknown cause ( probably age related) and that they could put him on a prescription if they were starting to interfere with his ever-day life. I did some reading about CBD oil and knew we had to give it a shot.. i am so glad we did. His seizures have decreased so dramatically over the last few days. Continued... the ones he does have are short and almost unnoticeable. I am so happy that Cannacanine was there to answer my questions as well! 

On-The-Go Dog Mom Necessities

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Contributed by Amberly Lewis

Life for a dog mom on the go can get pretty rambunctious at times! Especially if you have multiple dogs.

But regardless of what adventure we’re about to emBARK on- beach day, afternoon at the dog park, or an evening hike along the sunset- I have found that having these key items with me make all the difference.

Backpack with Pockets/Compartments

Through trial and error I have found that a backpack is the easiest way to carry around your dog mom necessities. Tote bags constantly fall off my shoulders, creating yet another item for me to carry around in my already-full hands. On top of that, tote bags seemed to be a never ending black hole, constantly struggling to locate the one item I was in need of. Backpacks tend to stay in place and out of the way. The easily accessible compartments will make it easier to reach around and grab a poop-bag, before your pup is off sniffing the next tree. Which brings me to my next item…

Poop Bags

 A must have for any dog mom, especially city moms. I once found my dog, Biscuit, rolling in a pile of dirt at the dog park. Upon further inspection I realized that he was actually rolling around in a pile of another dog’s poo... What a fun car ride home that was. From that moment on I realized the importance of cleaning up after your dog. Now I carry them with me at all times. I clip the poop bags to the outside of my backpack for easier access. You can find poop bags in bulk for relatively cheap from places like Amazon, Ross, Marshall’s, and even the Dollar Tree. No need to buy overpriced bags from pet shops.

Portable Water Bowls

Sometimes, you just don’t quite know where the day will take you. That’s why it’s always good to be prepared, especially when it comes to hydration. I always have pop-up portable water bowls handy and ready to go! They collapse flat in my backpack as not to take up much space... oh and don’t forget the water too!

Leash/Harness

Some states adhere to pretty strict leash laws. So a ‘leash’ can go without saying. But I have found that especially while leash training, harnesses seem to be much more effective by eliminating pulling and choking.

Deodorizing Pet Wipes

This one I learned the hard way. I started to notice that our dog-outings were really taking a toll on my vehicle. Deodorizing pet wipes help to eliminate not only an excess dirt, but will also reduce that outdoor odour.

Travel Treat Bag

 This is great to have on hand if you need to bribe your dog to get in the car, or to pose for a picture. Plus, I’m sure they were a good boy/girl and definitely deserve a treat.

From one dog mom to another, I hope these essentials help make your next outing a little less RUFF.

6 Steps to Potty Training Your Puppy

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Contributed by Amber Drake

Young puppies have an extremely hard time holding their bladder and will need to relieve themselves frequently. Potty training isn’t an easy process, but with time and dedication, you’ll have a much easier time as your pup gets older.

Potty training should begin the moment you pick up your puppy. This will help her get on the right track, sooner. Although she may have accidents, she will begin to understand what is expected of her. And, this will mean less clean-up for you. In this article, we’ll go through the steps of potty training… the ‘do’s,’ and the ‘do not’s.’

Step 1: Praise Your Puppy Excessively

Being required to go potty in a designated area is new to any dog. A dog’s instincts don’t tell them they’re not permitted to use the bathroom inside the house. Their instincts tell them to find an area where they don’t sleep or eat, and use the bathroom there, whether inside or outside.

That’s why it’s so important to praise your dog excessively when he uses the potty outside. Your dog needs your feedback to be successful in potty training (and all other types of training). Be sure to praise your puppy immediately after they potty outside… or else they won’t know what you’re praising them for.

The praise can be in the form of an excited “yay, good job,” a yummy low-calorie treat or kibble, or both. Many dog lovers carry around a handful of kibble in their pockets out of their puppy’s daily portions.

Step 2: Utilize a Crate

There’s controversy in the dog world about using crates… some dog lovers want a crate and others feel it’s not necessary. But, the crate essentially becomes your dog’s ‘den’ or ‘safe space.’ The crate is also helpful because puppies don’t like to use the bathroom where they sleep.

The crate should have a soft layer of padding to it. A dog bed generally works just fine. The crate should be large enough for your puppy to stand up and move around, but not large enough for your pup to relieve himself and move to another spot to sleep.

You can also place toys in the crate with your puppy so they’re able to play if they get bored. Mental puzzle toys, and some type of chew toy, are usually best. The Kong toys work extremely well, they’re mentally stimulating, and puppies generally can’trip them to shreds. One of the biggest mistakes puppy parents make is grabbing a toy that looks neat, but their puppy shreds the toy into small pieces and end up swallowing parts of the toy. This could lead to a blockage… and we don’t want that to happen.

For this step, it’s critical to note that puppies should not stay in their crates for long periods of time. The crate should only be utilized when you’re not able to pay attention to your puppy. Then, once their potty trained, you can leave the door to their crate open so they’re able to freely enter and exit.

Step 3: No Punishments

Punishing your puppy for urinating or defecating on the floor can do more harm than good. By the time you find out your puppy has had an accident, your pup likely doesn’t remember what they did. And, even if you catch them in the act, punishing your puppy could permanently damage the bond and trust they have with you.

Staying calm when they have an accident is essential. You shouldn’t yell, chase, or smack your puppy. You also shouldn’t ‘rub his nose in it.’ Not only will you lose their trust, but they will associate going potty with punishment and may resort to using the bathroom in areas you won’t find.

Some dog lovers will argue, ‘but rubbing her nose in it works.’ And, yes… sometimes it does. But, you risk the bond you will have with her for the rest of her life by using punishment as a learning method.

Step 4: Show Her Where to Go

If you catch your puppy in the act, instead of punishing, try to re-direct her attention. You can re-direct her attention by saying “let’s go potty outside” or something similar. Then, immediately bring her outside to show her where it’s okay to use the bathroom. Then, once she uses the bathroom in your designed area, that’s when you can excessively praise her. She will connect the dots, and learn you are happy when she uses the bathroom in that particular area.

Step 5: Don’t Overuse Puppy Pads

You can, and should, have puppy pads in the house while you’re training your pup. But, you shouldn’t set them up in multiple areas around the house. This is confusing to a puppy, and they won’t understand why it’s not okay to use the bathroom in the house. They also may not be able to distinguish between a puppy pad and an area rug, or why she’s allowed to use the bathroom in some areas of the home but not others.

Step 6: Establish a Routine

Establishing a routine with any puppy or adult dog is critical. Dogs have a great sense of time, and if you have a set routine it will make potty training much easier. For example, if you always take her potty after she eats, she will understand after she eats she goes potty outside. This may take time- so don’t get upset if she doesn’t immediately understand the routine. Don’t worry- she will.

The Bottom Line on Potty Training

The most important step you should be aware of in this process is to always be positive with your puppy. Dogs and puppies are eager to please you. They want to make you happy as often as possible. Also, understand every dog is different, and some puppies may take longer than others to learn what’s expected of them.

No Bake Treat Recipe

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In celebration of #TongueoutTuesday, we have an amazing recipe to share that requires NO baking...just in time for spring! Your dogs will have their tongue out for these goodies no matter the day of the week. The yogurt in the recipe is an excellent source of calcium and provides probiotic benefits. The coconut flakes also help to give dogs a nice and shiny coat! 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup of organic Greek yogurt or yogurt substitute
  • 1 cup of organic peanut butter
  • 3 cups of rolled oats
  • 1 cup of organic unsweetened coconut flakes

DIRECTIONS: 

  • Mix yogurt and peanut butter together in bowl
  • Combine oats to the mixture until everything is fully coated
  • Scoop out bite sized pieces and roll into little balls with fingers
  • Sprinkle coconut flakes onto rolled balls
  • Place on tray lined with baking paper
  • Refrigerate for an hour to chill
  • Enjoy!

This recipe will make about 30 treats and will last up to a week in the fridge...but these will be gone much sooner!