Category: Expert Advice

Fear Aggression in Dogs

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fear agression diagram

For many dog owners, everyday activities can turn stressful when their normally well-behaved pet displays aggressive behavior towards friends, family, and even objects around the house.  If a dog exhibits this type of sudden personality change, it can sometimes be associated with fear aggression, a type of dog aggression triggered by the dog’s belief that a person or object is threatening.
While dog behavior problems can be frustrating, fear aggression is especially challenging because the dog may risk being labeled as dangerous or mean, even though it is only frightened.  Treating this type of dog behavior should be a high…

Understanding Aggression in Dogs

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dog showing teeth

Though aggression is often perceived as a natural response, it is not normal behavior for dogs who have been socialized.  Because aggression is so complex and its consequences can be very dangerous, we recommend that you consult a professional behaviorist if your dog is displaying serious signs of aggression.  Here are the four basic types of aggression in dogs:

Dominance Aggression
Though you may not notice it, your dog is constantly monitoring the dominance hierarchy in your home and evaluating his place in the pecking order.  If your dog perceives his own ranking in this hierarchy to be higher than…

How to Trim a Cat’s Nails

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tabby cat with scratcher

1. Begin by choosing which type of nail clippers you would like to use.  These can vary from the plier-like to others that use a sliding guillotine.  Whatever you elect to use, make sure to keep the blades sharp, as dull clippers can hurt your pet and even split their nails.  You will also want to keep a towel or small blanket handy if you need additional help with restraint.  You should also invest in styptic powder.  It stops the bleeding if you mistakenly clip too far.
2. If you are unable to comfortably hold your cat’s paws, try to…

Keeping Your Cat Safe: Common Household Hazards

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Keeping Your Cat Safe: Common Household Hazards

There are food and common household items that can be a hazard to your new cat.  They should be stored safely out of their reach. This is not a complete list, but a basic list of more common hazardous household items. For a more comprehensive list, check out these additional poison prevention articles.

Food Hazards:  Not all food consumed by humans are safe for pets.  Here is a list of foods that are hazardous:
• Alcoholic beverages
• Caffeine
• Chocolate
• Fatty foods – fried foods, sweet foods
• Chicken and turkey bones
• Grapes and raisins
• Onions…

Keeping Your Dog Safe: Common Household Hazards

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yorkie drinking alchohol

Some foods and common household items can be dangerous to your new dog and should always be stored safely out of reach.  The below is not a complete list, but a basic list of more common hazardous items. For a more comprehensive list, check out these additional poison prevention articles.

Food Hazards:  Not all food consumed by humans is safe for pets.  Here is a list of foods that are hazardous:
• Alcoholic beverages
• Avocado
• Caffeine
• Chocolate, especially dark and bakers chocolate
• Fatty foods
• Cooked chicken and turkey bones
• Grapes and raisins
• Onions…

2 Separation Anxiety in Dogs

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10 Truths About Walking Your Dog

The Cause
Separation anxiety is an emotional distress response in dogs.  It occurs when an anxious dog is separated from the person or persons to whom they are most attached. The resulting response may lead to episodes of destruction, chewing, barking, howling, self-inflicted injury and housebreaking accidents.  Separation anxiety occurs when the owner is gone from the home and the dog is left alone.  In extreme cases, it can occur when the owner is in a different room or out of the dog’s sight.
There is not one specific cause of separation anxiety, but many factors which influence the syndrome.  …

Dog Training Technique: Nothing in Life is Free

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boy with pit bull

The “nothing in life is free” dog training technique instills a sense of respect and understanding between you and your dog.

How to Practice “Nothing in Life is Free”
• Once your dog has mastered his basic commands, you can begin the “nothing in life is free” technique.  Before you give your dog anything (food, a walk, a treat, attention), require that he first performs one of the commands.  For example, before you take him out, have him sit patiently and quietly before you put on his leash.
• Do not give your dog what he wants until he has…

Pet Adoption Checklist for Dogs and Cats

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Pet Adoption Checklist for Dogs and Cats

Adopting a new pet is a very exciting event!  You’ll need to pick up a few supplies, so we created a pet adoption checklist to help you prepare your home prior to your new adopted dog or cat’s arrival.

New Dog Supplies Check List

  • Dog collar, leash, and identification tags
  • Nutritious dog food
  • Dog crate or carrier
  • Dog bed
  • Food and water bowls
  • Dog grooming tools (shampoo, brush and nail clippers)
  • Dog toys
  • Treats & chews

New Cat Supplies Check List

  • Litter box and cat litter
  • Cat collar and identification tags
  • Cat food (both wet and dry)
  • Food and water

Teaching Your Dog Basic Obedience Commands

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girl shaking white dog's paw

Teach your dog basic obedience commands with these easy-to-follow dog training tips!  If you know how, you can use a clicker as a training aid.  Otherwise, you can use a treats from a treat pouch.  Treats should be given within one second of the dog performing the desired action.  The pouch should be kept out of sight otherwise, as it can become a distraction for your dog.
Teaching “Sit”
Hold a dog treat in front of your dog’s nose, just beyond his reach.  Slowly raise the treat above his head so that as his eyes follow the treat, his backside…

10 Feeding and Diet Tips for Dogs

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brown dog licking lips

Because there are so many high-quality, nutritious dog foods available, owners now have the luxury of selecting their dog’s food according to their personal standards.  Most owners opt to feed their dogs dry food because it is the most convenient to store, it is less smelly than wet food and it can reduce tartar buildup. Some owners feed their dogs nutritionally balanced wet foods or they use them as treats, to hide medication or to increase their dog’s water intake.

10 Feeding and Diet Tips for Dogs:
1.  When purchasing food, be sure to read and evaluate the ingredients.  This…