Do you sometimes wish you could take your pets on a vacation with you, but think it’s not possible, because pets aren’t allowed most places or feel it is too hard to figure out how it would work?
In episode 019 of Raising Your Paws, I spoke to Amy Burkert, the founder of a remarkable company and website, Go Pet Friendly who explains just how easy pet travel can actually be.
On the website, www.gopetfriendly.com, you can find the names and details about the places you can take your pets – hotels, campgrounds, restaurants, and more, across the United States and into Canada.
Free chapter give-away!!!
Amy Burkert has written a new book and because she was a guest on the show, and a really nice person, Amy is giving YOU – listeners to our podcast and readers of our blog, a free give-away – one chapter of her book.
Since, the greatest amount of our listeners happen to be from Minnesota -(this is also where the family owned company, NutriSource Pet Foods is located – hmmmmm, wonder if there is a connection……) the chapter is about a pet friendly place to visit in Minnesota. You don’t have live there to get the free chapter. Just follow this link. Yes, click here.
You can also pre-order the book on the same link. Pre-orders will be paw-tographed by her dogs Ty and Buster. You can see what both of them look like on her website. Cute!
Full Show Notes from the episode, 019.
Title: How to Make Traveling with Your Pet Easy and Handling Your Dog’s Fear Barking.
The name of the particular commercial cat puzzle feeder mentioned during the podcast was the Stimulo.
There are many different commercial ones, I mentioned this one only because of the similar tube shapes as paper tubes. I do not sell this product, nor work for the company that makes this product.
When a dog wags its tail, it is common to assume the dog is feeling happy and friendly. There are times, this is not the case at all. Find out how to interpret a dog’s tail then hear about when a wag may mean your dog is afraid, threatened or anxious.
Next, we’ll demystify some more ingredients in pet food, and explain the difference between protein meal and by-products, what is yucca schidigera and more.
You can call Genie Beur, Director of Customer Service, at NutriSource Pet Foods and ask her questions about your pets and pet food ingredients. Her direct line: 218-346-8312.
Then, if you understand the original purpose a particular breed of dog was bred for, it can explain how that breed is likely to behave. Hear fun, need-to-know facts about a few breeds in today’s “Meet a breed” feature.
Here are the photos of the dogs I spoke about on the podcast.
Here are some Great Danes.
Resources for the episode.
Do dogs really feel guilty? Hear Jean Donaldson, leading dog trainer, talk about if dogs can tell the difference between right and wrong when they poop on the floor in Episode 002. Listen to this episode here.
We’d love to hear your comments about the podcast. You can write these at the end of our blog articles.
Blog – Dane’s Gotta Jump, Beagle’s Gotta Sniff, Lab’s Gotta Swim – a Breed’s Purpose.
If you know what the reason a particular breed was bred for, then you will know some of the behaviors your dog may be likely to exhibit.
In episode 018 of the Raising Your Paws podcast, you can hear some of the reasons why Great Danes, Beagles and Labrador Retrievers do some of the annoying, I mean endearing things that they do.
Here’s a light hearted look at the Great Danes ability to jump.
Oh, alright, the Dane is not actually jumping that high on its own. It’s jumping on a trampoline. But they were bred to use their amazing jumping abilities.
Everyone knows that Labs love water – they were bred to jump in freezing water to collect game for hunters.
Watch this one. Walter, the dog, knows exactly where he’s going.
In episode 17 of the Raising Your Paws podcast, I was talking about the medical benefits of CBD oil, which is made from hemp, a variety of the cannabis plant. No, it is not medical marijuana. Listen here to the episode.
Cannabidiol, (CBD) relieves pain, kills or slows bacterial growth, reduces blood sugar levels, reduces vomiting and nausea, reduces seizures and inflammation, and inhibits cell growth in tumors and cancer cells to name just a few of the medical benefits. (Source: Cannabis and CBD Science for Dogs, by Dr. Caroline Colie, PH.D.
I bet you’re wondering how can one little plant do all that?
Before I tell you, let’s start with a crash course on the cannabis plant.
Cannabis plants produce a group of chemicals called cannabinoids, which produce mental and physical effects when consumed.
The two cannabinoids usually produced in greatest abundance are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
THC is the chemical compound that acts on the cells in the brain, that results in people getting high, (psychoactive component).
There are different varieties of the cannabis plant: Marijuana is the name of the form of cannabis with high levels of THC. (Psychoactive)
And hemp, commonly used to make products such as rope and fiber, is another variety of the plant that has high levels of a different chemical, cannabidiol or CBD, the non-psychoactive component.
Since the 1960’s scientists have demonstrated dozens of therapeutic applications for CBD. It does not get you or your pet high, and it is totally legal for anyone to buy – without prescriptions.
This is also a supplement that is offering numerous health benefits for people. You may have heard it talked about in the news and on television lately.
How does it work in your dog’s body (and yours)?
You have a special system in your body that all mammals, birds, reptiles and fish have that is called the endocannabinoid system (named after the plant).
It is a group of specialized receptors in the brain and the nervous system. (Receptors are nerve endings in your body which react to changes and stimuli and make your body respond in a particular ways.) The system allows the cells in your brain and nervous system to communicate with each other and affects how almost every other system in the body works – especially the immune system.
And what is pretty remarkable is that these receptors are all over your brain and just about everywhere in your and your dog’s bodies!
Our natural, internal cannabinoids called, endocannabinoids regulate the chemicals (neurotransmitters) that carry messages from one nerve cell to another in your body, acting like a master of ceremonies, directing some to fight problems and others to restore the body to its normal state. For example, when we have an infection the endocannabinoids tell the immune system to turn up the temperature to fight it, and when the invader is destroyed, they signal it to turn back down.
Turns out that the chemicals found in the cannabis plant closely mimic the body’s internal cannabinoids and when you consume CBD it interacts with your body’s cannabinoid receptors to get the same beneficial response as your own naturally produced ones. This is why cannabis can positively impact and affect so many parts of the body and help relieve a number of different illnesses.
When you use CBD oil, putting the correct dosage of drops under your tongue or in the mouth of your dog, (the most effective way to ingest it,) the cannabinoids from the hemp plant fit into your body’s own cannabinoid receptor sites. What do you get? Health benefits!!
Cannabinoids are also found in other plants such as broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, flax and other vegetables but not to the extent they are in cannabis. You’d need to eat a whole ton load of veges to get the same medical benefits. In fact, cannabis in the industrial hemp form, is the most abundant plant source of CBD in the world and CBD is emerging as the most important cannabinoid for health.
I recently took part in an event to try and set a new Guinness world record for the most people trained in pet CPR in one day. Cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is that potentially life saving first aid technique where you use your hands to externally compress the heart to imitate the pumping of the heart so that it sends oxygen rich blood to the organs and brain and you breathe into the nose of the dog or cat to inflate the lungs, to mimic normal breathing by the animal. The event was put on by Pet Tech , the first international training center for Pet CPR and first aid.
In Raising Your Paws episode, 016, I’ll tell you all about what we had to do to try to set a record, you’ll hear exactly what pet CPR is, how it’s done and hear true stories of people who saved dogs lives by performing CPR on them. You can see some photos of the Pet CPR day event in the full show notes below.
If you want to take a pet first aid class, go to Pet Tech’s website to find classes in your area and to register. It is such a relief to know what to do if your dog or cat is injured or suddenly takes ill. I am one of the Pet Tech certified instructors and teach classes in the Chicagoland area.
What are the two most important pet first aid skills you want to know how to do? Thom Somes, co-founder of Pet Tech, tells you in episode 009 of Raising Your Paws podcast. Listen here.
Back to Guinness world records, there are some silly and astonishing things that dogs do to win their record holding titles.
Here are some of the record breakers over the last few years.
Mochi, a Saint Bernard, did not have to do anything – he won by just being the dog with the longest tongue.
Major upset! Jiff Pom, a Pomeranian, used to hold the title for being the fastest dog on two paws. But then Konjo, a Chihuahua mix, stole the title.
Does your dog do a lot of tricks? You’ll be really interested in this one – it may inspire you to try to break the world record yourself.
Watch Smurf and his human show you their routine, doing the most tricks in one minute. Come 0n, you and your dog can beat that – cant you?
If you want to try and set or break a record with your dog or cat, all the instructions for how to apply are on the Guinness World Records, website as well as a lot more videos to watch. They are a hoot! Some are funny or cute or I’ve got to say – down right weird.
Show Notes for Episode 016:
Title: Learning Pet CPR May Set a New Guinness World Record and Astonishing Facts about Your Dog’s Nose.
Did you know that very small amounts of a simple little mineral does a wealth of good for your dog? It does!
Its called Selenium and it is one of the essential micro-nutrients that is necessary for proper growth, development and health for both you and your pets bodies.
Here are some of the things that selenium does.
Orchestrates normal growth.
Launches successful reproductive efforts.
Boosts the immune system by neutralizing free radicals. (unstable molecules that get naturally formed in the body that can leave cells open to disease.)
Defends the body against infections. (supports the immune system by boosting the activity of white blood cells that fight infection and disease.)
This is one busy mineral. Since it has such important jobs to do, you’d want the kind that is best absorbed and available for your dog’s body to utilize. And that kind is organic selenium – as opposed to the inorganic type – (called sodium selenite in many pet foods.)
In fact, talking about the amount of the selenium that gets absorbed into the body so that it can have the beneficial effects its suppose to have, (called its bioavailability) researchers have proved that organic selenium has 120-200% more bioavailability than sodium selenite. Go organic selenium!
You’ll be happy to know that we’ve got organic selenium in all of our dog food brands, including Pure Vita, Natural Planet and NutriSource pet foods! And, we are one of the few pet food companies that uses organic selenium.
Our organic selenium is from a family owned company called Alltech and the patented, trademarked name of the selenium is called Sel-Plex®.
On the back of our bags of kibble, in the ingredients list, you will find the organic selenium listed as “selenium yeast” (the trademarked, brand name would not mean anything to a customer.)
Now don’t get your whiskers in a snitch about the word “yeast.” In the next blog article, I’ll tell you about the myths and truths about yeast and why it’s used in pet food. There are different types of yeast out there, ones that may cause allergies in your pets v.s. the nutritional types that are highly beneficial and DON’T cause problems. More, to come.
Here is an explanation of the name in case you want to know. It’s called selenium yeast due to the way in which it’s made. The microorganism Saccharomyces cerevisiae, better known as brewers yeast, is grown in a selenium-enriched medium, it absorbs the selenium, and then converts it into the form that is……TA DA, organic selenium. Phew. Did you follow that? I bet you did. You’re smart.
Sel-Plex® is Alltech’s proprietary organic form of selenium yeast and is the first EU-approved and only FDA-reviewed form of organic selenium.
Selenium is super important for the body – a shortage of it can cause diseases but too much of it can be harmful. So the right amount is crucial and this is why the FDA regulates the supplementation of Selenium (Se) into diets. Also, why NutriSource pet foods spends the money they do, to buy this really high quality form of organic selenium from Alltech, that is approved by the FDA.
Sel-plex® ensures that the mineral status is very high while using the least amount necessary, because, the selenium is supplied in a form that can be readily absorbed, used by the cells and stored in the body’s tissues.
So, now you get it……..this added mineral really helps your pet’s health.
It does all the things selenium is suppose to do, and Sel-Plex® works hard to maintain the overall immune system.
By feeding NutriSource dog foods with this organic selenium, you are helping keep your dog’s eyes bright and tail a-wagging.
The 8th person to respond will win a coupon for a free large bag of any flavor of NutriSource or Pure Vita cat food to redeem at your local independent dealer that sells our food. To find the closest store to you, see our dealer directory here.
If you worry that there may be bedbugs in the hotels in which you stay, you will be pleased to know that there are detection dogs who are hired to ensure the rooms are bug free or sniff them out so they can be eliminated.
As a follow up to my talk with Dan, I asked him some additional questions I wanted to know. His answers follow.
How prevalent is it that hotels use dogs to check for bedbugs?
Very prevalent, depending on geographic area and the type of guests. Many hotels will have a routine search set up monthly, weekly, etc. as a proactive approach. If dogs are called in because bugs have already been seen, at a minimum the K9 team will search the rooms on each side and above and below.
Do you (Dogs For Defense) have many contracts with hotels?
We do not have direct contracts with hotels, we frequently work with Pest Control companies that may have the contracts.
Do most big hotel chains regularly employ bedbug detection dogs?
Most hotels are franchise owned so it is typically made on a more local level. As you can imagine an airport hotel may have a more diverse traveler than a small town mid America hotel.
Are there other companies like yours sending dogs into hotels?
What is becoming more prevalent is pest control companies bring a bedbug dog in house with their own handler. We have trained dog teams that work for pest control companies.
Can people feel reassured that most hotels are doing something to safeguard against bedbugs?
Yes, most hotels try very hard but it never hurts to take precautions as you travel. Such as keeping your luggage off the ground.
What other measures do hotels take to keep beds free of bugs?
A well trained cleaning staff will be doing a cursory visual inspection every time they change the sheets. They should be looking for small blood spots in the sheets or mattress or, of course, the bugs themselves. The bugs are similar in size and look to a common deer tick.
Much thanks to Dan Hughes for this reassuring information.
In the episode link below, you can hear Dan talk about how his dogs help rid airports of geese and his days serving in the U.S. secret service.
In the above episode, I talked about how to introduce your newly adopted dog to your other dogs. Here are the basic steps written out for you.
Listen to Podcast Epsiode 14 for the complete story and also learn how to best introduce the new adopted dog to the human family.
1. With multiple dogs at home, have your new dog meet the other dogs one at a time.
2. Have them meet outside – not inside your house. Use your yard or a nearby park or sidewalk that is not busy with people.
3. The space needs to be fairly open – not cramped. If the dogs are crowded too close together, like in a doorway, gate, or small pen, this can cause tension and one or both dogs may react aggressively.
4. Leashes on both dogs need to be held loosely, its easiest to use the long 10-12 foot leashes but if you are mindful and make sure you don’t pull the leash tight, you can use the 6 foot ones. You don’t want the dogs to feel trapped or spark any leash reactivity. If you have a fenced in yard, best yet is to drop the leashes completely. If you’re thinking this is crazy, you’ve got to keep the leashes held tight so you can pull them back or apart quickly in case something happens, see the next caveat.
Caveat. If you are worried about step 4, because the dogs did not meet before you adopted the new cutie pie, and you know your dog has problems meeting new ones or if you’ve been told your new buddy has issues with other dogs, then you’ll probably want to get some assistance from a dog trainer or dog behaviorist and even have them attend the initial greeting. See the resources below for how to find a behaviorist in your area.
5. Its a good idea to get the dogs moving. Do this by walking around yourself, striding away from them and calling happily, “this way” and encourage the dogs to follow.
6. Don’t have any toys or food around outside for the first meet and greet. You don’t want to bring out any resource guarding. Even dropping a treat on the ground can force both of them to go for it and then you can have a fight on your hands.
7. Speaking of resource guarding, before letting the dogs inside, make sure you’ve doggie proofed the house removing any bowls of dog food from off the floor and bones or toys laying around that could provoke possessiveness. Put them all away for now.
8. When it is time to go inside the house – take your new pup in first. Then bring in the resident dog(s). This helps prevent your dog from becoming territorial – copping a negative attitude like “Wait, the newbie is coming into MY house”?
Getting into more detail about picky eaters, you may be surprised to read that there are things we unknowingly do, that contributes to your cat rejecting food.
Serving cold canned leftovers from the refrigerator.
Domestic cats, like just wild cats, are designed to eat live prey – which means food that is warm. They are not scavengers like dogs who will eat anything on the ground they find – hot, cold, wet, dry, rancid, moldy, for a dog – its whatever globs they think are edible.
Because felines are not like this, they may commonly turn down food that is cold. That means if you have canned cat food leftovers, your cat may refuse to eat it. Warm it up a bit. This also releases the aroma of the food which makes it smell more appetizing. Room temperature canned food is preferable.
Only feeding one flavor and type of food all the time.
If you have a new kitten, start right away and get them used to eating a variety of foods. Feed different proteins and flavors, both wet and dry cat foods from a few different high quality food manufacturers. Vary the proteins you serve by the meal or the day. You’d get bored eating only one meat every single meal. Don’t do that to your cat.
You may have already tried to get your adult cat to eat different brands, but she won’t. This can be frustrating – I know. My sister’s cat Amber prefers to eat one lower quality brand of dry food, turning down canned cat food, and better quality kibble. No matter what it is, Amber won’t eat healthier food on any consistent basis. She doesn’t even like human food that many other cats would beg, steal, murder or mortgage your home to get. She won’t eat tidbits of chicken, or turkey, or filet mignon. My sister tried these in an attempt to see if Amber would eat anything else. It took a number of years, but fortunately, she will now deign to dine on an occasional meal of wet food and, (this was a pleasant surprise) she’ll eat a bowl of our brand of Pure Vita grain free cat food now and then.
I’ve heard from our pet food store dealers, that Pure Vita works for picky eaters but as there is no pickier cat I know than Amber, I was really glad when my sister told me Amber will eat this one other kibble.
Amber is an extreme case. However, it is in a cat’s nature to be more particular about what they eat. They learn from their biological mothers (or you if you got your kitty very young) what is considered acceptable to eat. This means some cats will lock into eating the one specific food or the limited amount of foods that was first introduced to them.
This is most likely what happened with Amber – the one unnamed particular brand of kibble was the food that she was started on as a kitten, and for her, it was initially the only food she perceived as being okay to eat. My sister adopted her at about one year old and this eating habit was already formed.
A cat’s preference or rejection of a food can depend upon not only its taste, but also the smell, size, texture and even shape of a kibble. So keep trying.
As much as possible vary their diet and start doing this as soon as you can. You CAN switch your cat onto new foods –yes, it’s going to be a slow process and the transition needs to be very gradual to avoid digestive upset and rejection of the food by your cat.
Very Important Caution to Know! With a cat you CAN’T play the game of standoff – putting out a food they don’t like and won’t eat – and not giving them anything else – figuring they’ll finally give in and eat it when they get hungry enough. A cat who refuses to eat for more than two days, can develop serious health issues. It’s called hepatic lipidosis. Your cat’s liver cannot deal with severe calorie restriction so if a number of meals are skipped in a row, fat gets deposited into the liver which causes liver failure. At anytime, if your cat stops eating for more than two days you need to take it to the vet.
If you let your dog get away with too much, you may be losing authority in your dog’s eyes without even realizing it. In Raising Your Paws Podcast (number 12,) my guest Camilla Gray-Nelson explained that over accommodating your dog’s desires can negatively affect how your dog perceives you.
Here’s some questions to ask yourself to see if you are accommodating your dog.
Do you give in to your dog barking at you to give it a treat or the ball?
Do you let your dog have a treat after they jump up and practically tear it from your hand?
Do you let your dog determine how fast or slow you go on your walks?
Do you get out of your dog’s way, letting them lie in your spot on the couch?
Do you let your dog lead/pull you wherever they want when walking?
Do you let your dog get up after putting them in a down before you’ve released them?
Think about other things that you let your dog do, even if you don’t want it and know its probably not a good idea.
I know at times, you just want your dog to be happy and so don’t always enforce your rules, and it can be a hassle to train consistently, however a dog who feels that they are in control, may not respect you as its leader and this can lead to misbehavior.
In the book, Lipstick and the Leash, Dog Training a Woman’s Way, by Camilla Gray-Nelson, she writes, “Dogs live by two simple rules: Obey superiors and ignore subordinates.” “In the animal world, accommodation is akin to subordination.”
By giving in too much to what your dog wants, not setting limits, your dog may see you as being subordinate to them – no wonder they ignore your cues, (a word I like better than commands.)
For your dog to take you seriously, you’ll want to increase/take back your rank as its leader – this does not mean by yelling at them or hurting or punishing them, it means simply start following through with your cues, let your dog know what behaviors are not allowed and take back your control.
They will respect you more and you’ll be amazed at how life with your pooch improves.
So, ignore that bark, and only give the ball or treat when she is sitting quietly in front of you.
Have your dog work for the treat, give a sit, or down or shake paws cue, etc. and then, give the treat. Do this consistently to break any bad habits they’ve developed to make you give them food.
Follow through with the “come” cue if your dog runs off and does not respond to you. Rather than yelling it over and over again, getting louder and madder, expecting them to come back to you when you sound like a raving lunatic, quietly, go get your dog. If they do come back on their own, even though a bit delayed, reward it with praise, a treat or toy whatever motivates your dog. If you punish them for coming back, it may backfire on you the next time. Your dog may associate coming to you as being a bad thing.
Have you been wondering if you should toilet train your cat? Seen the videos of those cats using the toilet and feel like you should join the movement?
Don’t worry. You’re not hopelessly old school if you still lug the litter home. The biggest reason people toilet train their cats is they don’t have to clean the litter box ever again – and it does look impressive. Of course that sounds appealing – and of course, cats are clever, but don’t be overly swayed or fooled by those videos. It can take a lot of time to teach, it’s a messy process and doesn’t work with all cats.
But the biggest reason not to feel guilty that you’re still having your cat use a litter box – it’s better for your cat!
Top 4 reasons To Let Your Cat Pee How a Cat Should.
1. Forcing them to use a toilet goes against your cats natural instinct and inherent wild nature. A cat digs, eliminates and covers by instinct. This is why it’s so easy to teach them to use the box in the first place. A box filled with an appealing litter most closely resembles how a cat would choose to eliminate outdoors. Covering waste is how they prevent predators from finding where they live – it doesn’t matter that your cat is indoors, that instinct doesn’t go away. In those videos, you’ll see the poor cats pawing at the toilet lid, trying to cover the water with something. This is also sometimes when they fall in.
2. Straddling the toilet can be difficult and stressful for cats. Especially for very young or old ones. Those seats can be slippery and not easy to negotiate especially if your cat is ill. If they fall in, even if they get out on their own, they may be panicked or soaked and if the toilet bowl was full, they will need a major bath, yuck. Remember, it can take only ONE traumatic experience for a cat to form a complete aversion to something. And if after a male human uses the bathroom and puts the toilet seat down, its a yay for a woman – bad news if you’re the cat. Nowhere to pee but on the rug. The process of eliminating should not be a stressful event.
3. The number of “bathrooms” and their locations are important for preventing elimination problems and creating security. If you have multiple cats, sometimes one cat may be nervous about walking through another cat’s territory to get to its box, so won’t use it, but you can always move the boxes to different places to solve that problem. Are you going to relocate your bathrooms? Elimination problems can also be caused by multiple cats not liking to share. (Listen to podcast episode 3 about this. ) No one likes a dirty toilet. If your cat doesn’t flush, no matter how many times you tell her to, there could be lingering odor from the solid waste, and other cats in the household may object to using the same toilet. Are you going to build new bathrooms for each cat? Of course not. That would be crazy.
4. You can monitor its habits of elimination. If your cat is sick or having some medical issues, your vet may want you to monitor the amount of urine your cat is producing. You can see this when you scoop the litter box – you cannot tell if there has been an increase or decrease when the urine is going into a toilet. Just so you know, a significant change in the volume of your cat’s pee, can be a red flag to a potential medical problem.
Also, if your cat ever needs to be hospitalized or boarded it will be in a cage with a traditional litter box. You may have to go through toilet training all over again when your kitty comes home. If you had kids, wasn’t that hard enough? You really want to do this with a feline?
Litter boxes and cats – like peanut butter and jelly. Compared to dogs, it’s ridiculous how easy it is. Why make it more complicated?
Source material for this blog posting comes from the certified cat behavior consultant, Pam Johnson-Bennett, in her book, Cat Wise. You can hear my interview with Pam in Raising Your Paws podcast episode 2. She shares the top truths about a cats nature that is really useful to know.
Not all barking is the same. Different sounding barks communicate different emotions and needs. If you’re trying to reduce the barking, recognizing what your dog is telling you is crucial. I’ll start with one that says your dog is excited.
If you recently got a puppy or are planning on it, I hope you’ve heard that the most important thing to do with it, besides loving it, feeding it, getting it outside fast enough and often enough to pee and poo and keeping it from chewing up your entire wardrobe, is to socialize it.
Simply put this means exposing and introducing your pup to as many new experiences and people as you possibly can. And the first four months of your dogs life is the most important time to do this. For the reasons why, listen to the episode of the Raising Your Paws podcast, #8.
Let’s talk about exposing your puppy to new people. You want to take your dog to places where they will see as wide a variety of different age groups, sizes, sexes, shapes, colors and gaits of people as possible. Yes, you’ll be planning a lot of short field trips to go visit people and taking walks around the neighborhood so that your puppy walks by a lot of different types of people.
What do you actually do with your puppy once you get there or when they meet someone new? When visiting, you want the experience to be overall positive so a bit of play, petting and gentle handling by others is involved. The best thing single thing to do is plan to have everyone that meets your dog, hand feed it. Take small tasty treats with you, and give a bit to the teenagers you meet on your walk, or the man in the baseball cap and sunglasses and let them feed a bit to your dog. Do the same thing for the children who want to come up and pat your dog. For younger children you will want to assist with the feeding. If your dog is not food motivated, but loves toys and balls, then the people can use the favorite toy to play with the puppy.
If you cant actually have the person hand feed, such as when your dog sees the UPS delivery person going next door, or when someone is walking by using crutches, then you feed them a treat as near by the person as is feasible. This also works for the bikes and skateboarders going by and is the method to use for babies as well. Simply feed a treat to your puppy as they are sniffing near the infant.
When I started walking Rosy around the neighborhood in the first weeks after adopting her, each time we got closer to the person coming towards us on the sidewalk, before they passed by us, I said her name, got her attention and fed her a treat as the person walked by.
For a more detailed description of this method and more information about socialization, I highly recommend, Jean Donaldson’s book, The Culture Clash.
Speaking of puppies, NutriSource Pet Foods has new puppy food flavors! In addition to our regular chicken flavor for both small/medium and large breed puppies, we now have turkey, grain free puppy food.
Greeting a new dog.
Were you taught that when approaching a new dog, to first, hold your hand out for the dog to sniff? Have you taught your kids this?
Did you know that this method is the number one thing that can actually provoke a dog to feel threatened which may result in them biting?
Yikes!!! Don’t worry. Teach yourself and your children the correct and safe way to meet new dogs.
Here is a great poster created by the late Dr. Sophia Yin, that shows the correct way greet an unfamiliar dog.
You can also download the poster for yourself and get copies.
In this week’s podcast, I spoke about paying attention to a cat’s tail. Its various positions can tell you a lot about how the cat is feeling. To supplement the episode, here is little video showing you cat tail positions.
Resources for the podcast episode #10 Title: Dogs Who Help Keep Hotels Free of Bedbugs & The Correct, Safer Way to Greet an Unfamiliar Dog.