January 21, 2011
We’re approaching the end of January. How are your New Year’s resolutions going? Need an extra boost to keep it up during the rest of 2011? Why not include your dog in the action?
The DogWatch Hidden Fences team thinks that dogs make everything more fun – and we’ve come up with some ideas to energize your resolutions with the help of man’s (and woman’s) best friend!
Exercise With A Smile
Starting an exercise routine is a perennially popular resolution. Dog owners who take on this task can not only improve their own health but also the health of their pet. Bring your dog along on your walks and runs. Your dog will get some much needed extra exercise, and their happy faces will encourage you to fight through those tough hills and that painful last mile.
If you prefer to exercise indoors, incorporate some fetching games into your warms up and cool downs. It will help you start and end your workout on a happy note. Furthermore, by including your dog in your routine, it will give you one more reason to stick with it. You don’t want to disappoint Max or Bella, right?
Flex Your Mind Muscles
If you’re anything like us, you love curling up on the couch next to your sleeping pup. While we all love these precious moments of relaxation, sometimes we also crave some fun activities that challenge us to think in new ways. These activities range from reading that new novel your co-worker raved about, mastering the New York Times crossword puzzle, or building that bookshelf that is still in pieces in the basement.
How do you find the time for these tasks? Get the whole family involved, including the family pet. Establish “puzzle hour” or “reading night,” and ask that everyone disconnect from their phones and computers and TVs during this brief period of relaxing “brain time.” As for the dog, give her her own learning activity. Stuff a KONG toy with her favorite snack, or place treats inside a “puzzle” toy (read about some examples here). She’ll be occupied and energized – just like the rest of the family.
October 14, 2010
Last month, we focused on tackling your dog’s back to school blues. Now, for many pet owners across the country, we have another change to contend with: the cold weather. We’ve compiled a quick guide to help you prepare for the chilly days ahead. Whether it is your dog’s first winter or his tenth, we recommend taking the following steps to ensure a happy and healthy season.
The first step is especially key for new pet owners – know your breed. A number of breeds are particularly well-suited to cold weather, including Huskies, Chow Chows, Saint Bernards, Akitas, German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers. These dogs have thick coats that protect them from the cold, and they are often just as content running around outside in January as they are in July.
Other breeds with short hair, like Chihuahuas, Greyhounds and Whippets, or no hair at all, like Chinese Cresteds, are more susceptible to the cold weather. Sweaters and coats, if they tolerate them, will help keep these breeds warm during winter walks.
The next step is protect your dog’s paws. A dog’s paws are very sensitive to the salt used in walkways and roads during the winter. Dogster reports that “prolonged contact with de-icers can lead to chemical burns on paws.” Salt is also harmful if ingested, which may happen if you dog licks her paws after a walk. Furthermore, dogs can also slip on the ice and injure themselves just like their owners!
Cloth dog booties are a great way to protect your dog’s paws and prevent slipping, yet not all dogs will tolerate them. In that case, another option is a paw wax like Musher’s Secret. Applied to the paw pads before each walk, the wax will protect against the harmful salt. You may also want to keep a bowl of warm water by the door to wash your dog’s paws and your own shoes before stepping back inside after a walk.
For dog owners who use an “in-ground” fence system, such as a DogWatch® Hidden Fence, the next step to prepare for cold weather is a winter fence checkup. For example, it is important to make sure driveway and walkway cuts are sealed and that no wire is exposed that might be damaged by snow plows or shovels. Also, if you have had a fall yard clean-up or aeration, check your transmitter to make sure the wire has not been accidentally cut. If you have questions about your DogWatch system, check the videos in the Customer Service section of the website or contact your local DogWatch Dealer. Also, if you do not have a hidden fence but are looking to install one soon, think about scheduling an appointment in the fall, before the ground freezes.
September 2, 2010
For the past couple of weeks, students everywhere have shown signs of that seasonal bug, the Back to School blues. The end of summer means less time to play outside with friends, and more time devoted to classes and homework. That’s enough to put most kids in a bit a funk, but did you know the family dog might also share their pain?
That’s right, dogs can suffer from the Back to School blues, too. This week, Dog Tails gives families tips to help their dog manage the transition from summer vacation to a new school year. By following this prescribed “homework,” you can help banish these blues soon and restore your dog to a happy state.
Dogs are sensitive to changes in their daily routine. Back to school represents a particular challenge. Days once filled with outdoor play, activities and attention are now mostly solitary and a lot less exciting. To ease the transition, experts suggest slowly adjusting the dog’s schedule to the new routine. Shift playtime and walks to morning and evening hours, and away from school hours.
This gradual transition can help avoid the dreaded curse of back to school season: separation anxiety. These feelings often cause dogs to act out in destructive ways, including excessive barking and chewing or eating things they shouldn’t.
August 26, 2010
Being a dog owner is not easy. To raise a dog properly, you need to devote time, money and passion to the job. Moments of frustration are bound to occur, and at regularly intervals. Successes are often followed by small failures and false starts. You may even lose your favorite pair of shoes to your puppy’s teeth.
As any dog owner can tell you, however, all of that effort is worth it. Bringing a dog into your home will change your life. Your dog’s unconditional love, unsinkable spirit and unabashed smiles can improve your health and well-being in many ways.
To prove our point, Dog Tails has compiled a list of the top 5 ways that dogs can change your life for the better. Read on, and learn more about how these amazing creatures make our lives better every day.