9 Summer Tips for Your K9

  STAY COOL IN THE

It’s hot this summer so be sure to keep cool but don’t forget about your furry best friend during your dip in the pool. Here are some tips brought to you by dog experts Cesar Milan and Tamar Geller on how to care for your hot dog this summer!

 

1. Exercise at sunrise or sunset- Are you an Early Bird? Night Owl? Use it to your advantage and sneak in a walk either early morning or late at night to avoid the scorching heat of mid-day.

2. Use doggie boots- As the sidewalk can be hot, be sure to protect your dog’s paws with boots. Were lovin’ these kicks- and they’re a fashion statement too! 

2b9e7546a8a10169851dcd90350064ad

 

3. Beware of dog dehydration- Dogs cool themselves by panting so be sure to check for signs of panting hard, staggering gait, rapid heartbeat, dazed look, restlessness, dark red or purple gums and/or tongue, vomiting, excessive drool, bloodshot eyes, and lethargic behavior- these are all signs of dehydration.

4. Have water handy- Throw us a bone here, or just a drop of H2O every so often. Make sure to carry a water bottle while on your walk. You can even strap it onto a doggy vest which can double to cool down your pup.

p-3605-73758K_005 5. Keep it shady- Be sure to take breaks in the shade if your dog has been out in the sun for a while. Set up a fan or sprinkler to allow your dog a bit of relief from the rays. If theres no shade in sight, create some with this handy pet canopy.

p-86081-74613K_009_int

6. Start from the bottom- Dogs cool from the bottom up so be sure to spray from underneath when rinsing off. Try laying down a cool wet towel for your canine pal to lay on and rest.

7. Let em’ dig- By nature, dogs dig to keep cool so if they start digging at the ground, let em’ go!

8. Let them test the weather- Let them out for a bit before your walk to feel the weather for themselves. They will understand better why they are going for a shorter walk than usual if they assess the weather beforehand.

9. Dogs can swim too- Next time you go for a dip to cool off, bring your pup. Swimming can be another great form of exercise for dogs if they are comfortable in pools. Keep it safe with a flotation device!

Click here to read more from our experts Cesar Milan and Tamar Geller!

Comment below how you’re keeping your dog cool this summer:

DSC_2190_high

New Wearable Dog Technology? Why yes! Exclusive Launch event May 30-31st in NYC at Zoomies

Big News everyone! We are proud and happy to be hosting our NYC launch event on May 30-31 in NYC at the iconic and legendary Zoomies.

If you are in the area we would love to meet you, and if you are not then be sure to tell your friends and family!

We also have a brand new website, and would love it if you took a look!

Hachiko zoomies email campaign 2

DANGER! Foods to never feed your dog!

We are all guilty of letting our dogs snack from our plate- but some foods are unsafe for them!

We found (and love) this simple infographic from ASPCA that details everything we should not give our pets. We are printing this out and putting it on our fridge.

Share this to make sure our dogs eat safe!

danger!

Moving With Your Dog

Moving . With your dog

Moving. That word can send a shiver up our spine like no other. Packing everything into boxes, hauling it across town (or even worse across country). It’s exhausting just thinking about it. But you also know the silver lining. The new house, new town- and in the end it’s worth it.

You dog, however, has no idea what’s going on.

So as you are planning your move and trying to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible, don’t forget to make sure to take extra precautions to make the move as simple as possible for your pet.

  • Before the move – Build a checklist of things to take care of- be sure to include:
    • A visit to the vet- If you are moving far and you are leaving your vet go in for one last visit. Use this time to:
      • Get refills on all medications
      • Get any vaccines you need
      • If you are traveling long distance it may be worth getting a sedative
      • Ask for a copy of your dog’s medical history and vaccination records
      • Also always worth checking with them if they have a recommendation for a vet in your new area
    • Visit your groomer- here again if you are moving far then it’s worth a last to your favorite groomer. This is especially useful if you are going to travel by car because clipping those nails and a little trim can help keep your car looking spiffy.
    • Build a travel plan- You may just be moving a few streets down, but if you are moving farther away make sure to think out your travel plans
      • If you are flying to your new home double check the airline requirements- you may need a health certificate or an updated vaccine record
      • If you are driving to your new home be sure to plan the trip in advance:
        • Look at dog friendly hotels, restaurants and plan plenty of pit stops
      • Update your dog’s microchip- We The night before you leave update your dog’s microchip information with your new address
      • If you are moving close it’s worth to take your dog there ahead of time to start exploring the area
  • Packing:
    • Order your packing supplies (boxes, tape, etc.) and have them arrive a few days in advance so your pooch can get used to them
    • Involve them in the process. Let them sniff the boxes and poke about so they are not surprised when everything is packed away
    • Be reassuring and give a little more attention than usual (extra treats and snuggles)
    • But also try to maintain your normal routine- normal walks, feeding schedule and no special treatment like sleeping in your bed!
    • Pack your pooches belongings (bed, toys, etc.) last

More after the jump…

Continue reading

Hachiko Debate: Supplements- when are they necessary and when are they a waste of money?

SUPPLEMENTS

Dog’s that are in good health and eat balances diets should not need supplements. In fact sometime supplements can also do harm- so before you decide that your dog needs them take a moment to look at the real need.

According to a study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association from 2006 the most common supplements given are multivitamins, fatty acids (to improve coat shine), Probiotics (for gastrointestinal problems), supplements to support arthritic joins and antioxidants (to counter aging effects such as cognitive dysfunction).

Now it’s estimated that one third of every dog in the US receives some kind of supplement, and we are talking about a 1 Billion dollar market, that has little scientific evidence behind it. The FDA and many vets believe that pets receive a balanced diet when they are feed commercially processed dog food, while others think they are a good way to improve health.

There are a few general rules of thumb when considering  adding supplements to your dog’s diet:

You may consider adding supplements (after consulting with your vet!) if:

  • You feed your pet a homemade diet
  • You dog as particular health needs

You probably don’t need supplements if:

  • When you dog is in good health
  • If you feed them a store bought pet food diet (they usually contain the ingredients you are looking to supplements and adding more may have adverse effects)

Why is this such a big issue? Well overdoes of vitamins can be very bad. According to vets excess calcium can cause bone problems, too much Vitamin A or D can lead to vitamin toxicity with effects such as dehydration, joint pain, muscular atrophy and loss of appetite.

If, after consulting with your vet, you do decide to add supplements then here too you need to do your research and choose carefully! The National Animal Supplement Council checked joint support products on the market, and found that 25% didn’t really contain what they claimed on the label. When ConsumerLab.com tested thee probiotic supplements they only found one with enough dosage to be effective.

What to look for when looking at pet supplements:

  • Know exactly what ingredient you are looking for and check the label
  • Look for brands that have commissioned clinical studies
  • Gauge their expertise- look for brands that specialize in one area, or contact them directly to understand how the product was formulated and how long they have been in business
  • Look for certifications from third parties (such as the National Animal Supplement Council)
  • Do not give your pets human supplements. There are ingredients that are harmful to dogs!
  • Don’t fall to false promises- if it sounds too good to be true it probably is. Supplements promising to alleviate cancer, parvovirus or hip dysplasia? Move along…

What do you think? Do you give your pets supplements? Why? Tell us in the comments!

Additional Reading:

Pets WebMD supplement guide

Pet MD Supplement guide

Top 10 supplements and do they work

Life with Beagle- are supplements worth it?

Love is in the air… but that doesn’t mean your dog likes it

Introduce your dog to your new

There is nothing like the love between an owner and their dog. It’s a special bond that not everyone can understand and there’s nothing like it. So what happens when you find a new significant other?

Jealousy does not look good on anyone- dogs included. However when you introduce a new component into your ‘pack’ your dog is going to digest this information, and that may take time.

When it comes time to introduce your new SO and dog there are a few tricks that can make this process go smoother:

  • A dog’s home is their territory, and they can be over protective of perceived ‘threats’. Why don’t you make their first meeting be somewhere neutral
  • Try not to introduce too many changes at once. A new SO is a big enough challenge for your dog, so make sure their space remains safe and familiar
  • New relationships can sweep us off our feet, but if your new SO drastically cuts into your quality time with your pet- don’t expect them to warm up too quickly. Try and stick with your schedule as much as possible and involve your pooch. Go on an afternoon picnic, or go for a long after dinner stroll all together
  • Bribes bribes bribes. You want your dog to associate your new SO with a positive feeling, so keep a few treats by the door and have your SO give one to your dog when they come in. And then maybe give them a few more during their stay
  • If your dog starts acting out (barking, chewing, aggressive behavior) you should address it at once, do not forgive bad behavior due to the circumstances, but also try and adjust your behavior to give your dog the attention they need.
    • If your pooch is specifically acting out by destroying your SO’s belongings it may be easiest to keep them out of reach for a while
  • Give them time to bond- ask your SO to look after your pooch for a few hours. Some one on one quality time will go a long way
  • Also don’t forget that your SO can get jealous of your relationship with your pooch. Make sure you still give each one of them enough one on one time to feel special. And then take a moment to remember how lucky you are!

And in case you were wondering, this is what a jealous dog looks like. (Read: “pay attention to meeeee”)

I'll just lay here until you notice me..

Additional Reading:

7 tips to get your dog to like your boyfriend

Introduce your dog to your new partner

My dog hates my valentines

How to prevent a green pooch

Haciko Debate: Raw food diet

We all know the age old saying of we are what we eat. One of the main decision us dog parents need to make is around what type of diet we want our pet to eat.

Dry food, wet food, raw food, commercial, locally made, homemade.

The choices can be overwhelming. And one of the hottest issues seems to be around raw diets. We wanted to take a deeper look at conversation and understand a little bit more what the advocate and critics say.

The raw food for dog movement started in Austalia in 1993 by vet Ian Billinghurst promoted “BARF” diet, which stands for Biologically Appropriate Raw Food, which was essentially Bones and Raw Food, and is according to Dr. Billinghurst a more natural diet in line with what dogs would eat in the wild. Critics have pointed out that 1. Dogs live much shorter lives in the wild, so this is not necessarily a strong selling point, and 2. That a lot of the breeds we raise at home are very different to wild dogs.

The FDA and ASPCA  have weighed in, backing the critics in saying that there are great health risks in raw food diets. Specially in a 2010 Pet food study the FDA testing 193 commercial raw food and found that 15 were positive for Salmonella and 32 were positive for L. monocytogenes.

However let’s look at the pro’s and con’s to the raw food diet:

Pro’s:

  • Safety– there have been numerous pet food recalls and by preparing your dog’s meals you know exactly what you are feeding them
  • Nutritional benfits– you control exactly what you dog eats (and can tailor food based on allergies or sensitives). Commercial dog food also contains preservatives which you can eliminate from your dog’s diet
  • Health benefits– Everything from better dental health, to shiner coats, and higher energy levels. Some even say this is an outlet for chewing tendencies and can lead to overall better behavior.

Con’s:

  • Safety concerns– raw food is known to contain a number of pathogens (such as Salmonella, Campylobacter, Escherichia coli O157:H7, Clostridium perfringens, Clostridium botulinium, and Staphylococcus aureus). These pathogens usually only pose a serious human risk to the immuno-compromised, the elderly, and young children; however, this is a very important consideration if you are feeding a raw diet and have people in these risk groups living in your home.
  • Nutrition and health- Nutrient deficiency is a big concern on homemade raw diets. It’s hard to and time consuming to adequately balance a diet. Furthermore there are health risks from the food itself, eating bones has been known to hurt dogs and is a major concern.
  • Commitment– raw diets can be both very expensive and time consuming.

Continue reading