How Much Exercise Is Safe For My Dog?

Regular exercise can have a tremendous impact on your dog’s overall well-being. Dogs that get regular workouts enjoy a higher metabolism, smaller appetite, better muscle tone, and even better temperature regulation – a very important benefit for dogs in hot or humid climates.

Though they’re energetic, food-loving Labradors are prone to canine obesity, which regular exercise and a healthful diet can combat. Finally, challenging exercises keep Labs mentally engaged, which is important for this intelligent breed.

Regular exercise is essential for any dog’s health and mental well-being. A lack of exercise can contribute to destructive behavior, obesity, boredom and a variety of health problems. Dogs also need continuous mental stimulation with new smells and sights – so spending time in the back yard just isn’t a substitute.

Just like humans, dogs need regular exercise to stay in good condition. Canines are active animals – especially as many breeds were bred for high activity levels. A lack of exercise can lead to decreased lean muscle strength and weaker bones.

Obesity isn’t just a growing problem for humans – it’s affecting an increasing number of dogs too. Even moderate obesity can reduce the lifespan of your pet. This is because it can cause chronic inflammation, digestive problems, skin disorders, and even cancer. Regular exercise is an important tool for reducing the chance of obesity.

A lack of exercise in your four-legged pal may result in health risks like obesity. But that’s not all. Dogs that go without regular exercise can also develop destructive behaviors like barking, digging or chewing.

Get the kids to participate in exercising with your family dog too. It’s good for their health to participate in regular exercise and the incentive of playing with the dog at the same time will make it much more fun for all involved.

Beyond your dog’s breed, other important considerations are his age and health. Older dogs will not have the stamina they once had, and may also have ailments that limit mobility. Regular exercise is still important for an older dog, to keep him fit and engage his mind, but his routine may require modifying. On-the-go puppies usually give themselves enough exercise while they explore, play, and learn. Pushing puppies to over exercise can cause lasting problems in their fast-growing bones and joints.

Regular exercise and walks will also help your pregnant dog keep her muscle tone and general health. Obesity is potential danger in pregnant dogs when delivery time comes, so control any tendency to fatness with exercise and careful attention to her revised caloric needs.

Categories: Pets

Puppy Socialization Techniques

Socialization is very important for a dog. Most large dog breeds have a natural guarding instinct that manifests in their aggressive behavior. Include socialization as an important part of your puppy care from the very first day to prevent the risk of hostile display by the dog in the future. The time between 3 and 10 weeks is crucial for a dog to become socialized. After 10-12 weeks, a dog starts exhibiting caution and develops a stronger psychology.

They must know that you are the pack leader and hence the ultimate authority. This will put the puppy at ease (assuming it’s not an Alpha Type) and help them understand their position in the pack (your family). Praise them with an enthusiastic sounding tone in your voice and pet them vigorously after they’ve done their business. This teaches them your approval of their behavior. An important part of your new puppy care is establishing this positive relationship.

As with small children, it’s up to you to put the puppy in an environment that is safe for them, and won’t ruin something expensive for you. Puppies explore with their mouths as much as anything, and they learn about the different textures of things by gnawing. Also, chewing makes their razor sharp teeth feel better by rubbing the super sharp edges down just a bit. The key to new puppy care is to understand how your puppy sees the world and what her motivations are.

Pet-proof your home before welcoming the puppy in your home. Change your home setting and interior decor in a way that household items do not pose a threat to the little one. Prepare a puppy care checklist in consultation with the breeder and buy essential supplies accordingly.

Rest assured, basic puppy care isn’t something that comes naturally for anyone. We learn helpful tips from others who’ve been successful at raising and training dogs. And for the rest, well, we just learn as we go.

Your puppy care schedule must include daily playtime for the dog. Until the puppy turns 10 weeks, you may let it play within the safe confines of your home. However, after it turns into a 3-month old, start taking the dog for 20 to 30 minutes of a daily walk. A full-grown large dog may need more than 90 minutes of formal exercise a day.

It is also important though that your young dog should not do too much exercise on the lead until they are at least six moths old. Short bursts on the lead will be sufficient for your pup during those early weeks.

Categories: Pets

Ways To Keep Your Horse Healthy And Prevent Possible Diseases

Working together with a veterinarian is the best way to keep your horse healthy. With proper planning and implementation of a wellness program for each of your horses, diseases and infections can be prevented. A horse’s wellness program should include these four important aspects – vaccinations, annual physical exam, deworming, and annual dental exam.

Vaccinations

Each horse in your barn should have its own annual vaccination program. These vaccinations are necessary to keep your horses healthy all year round, as they become protected from outbreaks of diseases and infections. The most recommended vaccines that your horse should have are West Nile virus, tetanus, rabies, and equine encephalitis (Eastern/Western). Your veterinarian can also work on a vaccination plan for other viruses and infections that can affect your horse in the future.

Annual Physical Exam

Schedule with your veterinarian an annual physical exam for each horse that you own. A physical examination of a horse will consist of a visual inspection of the animal and monitoring of the vital statistics like pulse, temperature, and respiration. The horse’s lungs will be listened to closely, and there is also an evaluation of the skin and coat condition. Any abnormalities and concerns will be discussed immediately for proper action.

Also, for horses in their senior years, they need to frequently undergo a blood test. This is done to rule out the possibility of your older horses having equine Cushing’s disease, also called pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction.

Deworming

A deworming plan should also be implemented with the help of your veterinarian. It’s important to have complete control of the parasites that could live in your horse’s gut. A fecal testing will be done first, then a deworming strategy can be followed based on the test results. You’ll not only need to deworm your horse, but also your property as well. Your veterinarian will help you with the necessary steps to accomplish this.

Annual Dental Exam

Regular dental care is also important to keep your horse healthy. Horses are also susceptible to dental issues, especially when they’re already in their senior years. When a horse has a dental issue, it can lead to poor performance, weight loss, and unruly behavior. It’s best that each horse undergo a dental exam yearly to diagnose dental problems early on, and be treated accordingly before they can affect the health of your horse.

This well-rounded wellness program for your horse is only possible if youre working together with your trusted veterinarian all the time. Let your veterinarian know of any minor health concerns that your horse is experiencing, to prevent possible diseases from getting out of hand, that will result to the death of your beloved equine.

Categories: Pets

Grooming Your Dog – How To Keep It In Tip-top Shape

Grooming the dog is one of the tasks that every pet parent should be able to learn with some level of proficiency, unless you dont mind paying a professional groomer to get your dog prim and proper every time it needs to. Adhering to a regular grooming schedule can help keep your canine friend in tiptop shape.

Daily Brushing is a Must

Regardless of the type of coat of your dog, everyday brushing or combing is recommended. This not only helps keep its coat shiny and healthy, it also helps improve the circulation of blood in the skin. When circulation is improved, vital nutrients are delivered to all the cells of the dogs skin making it healthier and more robust especially in the fight against skin irritation and inflammation. And if your dog happens to have an extra-long coat, daily combing can help prevent tangles and mats. If you have a dog that sheds heavily, too, frequent combing can lessen the amount of loose hair.

Dont Bathe Your Dog Too Frequently

Some dog owners bathe their dogs on a weekly basis. Dont! Frequent bathing robs the dogs skin of natural oils which are present on the skin to help protect it against dirt, debris, and other particles while also helping provide for a waterproof layer. If you bathe your dog very often, you will be washing away these natural oils and lead to dry and easily-irritated skin. If you don’t want to put your dog in the bath you could take them to a pet spa instead. For dogs with long coats, once a month bathing is already sufficient. For those with shorter coats, bathing 3 to 4 times a year is perfectly okay. In bathing your dog, it is important to use only a dog-appropriate shampoo; never the shampoo you use yourself.

Dont Forget Your Dogs Teeth

Majority of pet parents dont brush their dogs teeth. Many simply give dental treats. While this may work up a certain point, brushing your dogs teeth with an appropriate toothbrush and toothpaste designed specifically for dogs can help get rid of plaque and tartar that may not be removed by dental chews alone. Daily tooth-brushing is recommended; although this can be adjusted to a more convenient twice weekly thing.

Inspect and Clean the Ears

Most dog owners fail to care for their pets ears during grooming. The ears must be first inspected for any sign of redness, discharge, or even foul odor. There are plenty of dog-appropriate ear cleaning solutions in the market, although you can easily make your very own. What is important is to inspect and clean your dogs ears every 3 to 4 weeks.

Clip the Nails

Youll know if its time for your dog to have its nails clipped. Youll hear it scratching on your floor every time it walks. Dont let your pets nails grow unusually long as it can curve inwards and hurt your pet. Ideally, youd want to check your dogs nails every month to have an idea if they already require some trimming.

Keeping your dog in tiptop shape can be accomplished in many ways. Grooming it can give your dog that healthy look it deserves.

Categories: Pets

Tasks Involved When Owning Horses

Things to Consider Before Owning a Horse

1. One should take riding lessons and lease a horse in exchange for caring and riding benefits. If no horse is available, a potential horse owner may experience how to look after the animal by volunteering in a riding center, community stable, or a local horse rescue.

2. A potential horse owner should consider the costs of acquiring and caring for the animal. Maintenance costs thousands of dollars a year, more than the purchase price of a horse. Care for the animal includes food, water, shelter, grooming, hoof care, dental care, vaccinations, and training, etc.

3. When looking for a horse to adopt or purchase, one should ask trusted horse owners, search in horse rescue organizations, or inquire online for legitimate horse breeders across the country.

4. Horses live for about 30 years, and a potential horse owner should seriously consider the length of time and money it would take to care for a horse. One should find a way on how to relinquish the animal properly if care couldnt be provided anymore.

Caring For Ones Horse

Aside from the standard requirements of food, water, and shelter for the animal, a potential owner should:

* Find the services of a veterinarian to vaccinate horses from communicable diseases such as horse fever and tetanus

* Provide a healthy environment for horses, for a long life

* Be selective at choosing a veterinarian and ferrier

Protecting Ones Horse

1. Have the identity and records of the horse installed on a microchip, which is then attached under the animals skin.

2. Keep hard copies of identification documents, photographs, and health certificates of the animal in a safe place, ready to be retrieved if the horse is discovered missing.

3. Keep barn doors and farm gates locked.

4. Install motion sensor devices or closed-circuit television for any presence of unidentified persons.

5. Block driveways and isolated roads with gates to prevent unrecognized vehicles from entering the compound.

6. Always report to local authorities any suspicious movement of people around ones vicinity.

Surrendering The Care For Ones Horse

Fate and fortune do not always smile on some horse owners, who by choice or not, have to give up caring for their horses. There are proper ways to surrender the animal without compromising its right to life.

1. One option is to lease the horse to persons who are willing to share in the cost and maintenance of the animal. In exchange, these individuals who opt to lease instead of own a horse get to ride and care for the animal for a certain period of time.

2. One can sell the horse to a properly screened private horse owner.

3. A horse owner can surrender his/her animal to a legitimate horse rescue, sanctuary, or therapeutic ride center.

4. Horses should never be sold in animal auction houses, for most of the animals that are bought this way are delivered to other countries only to be killed and eaten.

Horses are great, beautiful beings which deserve the love and care of every responsible and committed horse owner.

Categories: Pets

Horse Ownership A Few Tips

There are a lot of rewards that you reap from owning a horse. Its not an ordinary pet, and it’s logistically more demanding than most domestic pets. Horses, however, can give you more benefits physically as well as mentally, emotionally, and socially. These are enough reasons for many to want to have their own horses.

For first-time horse owners, here are a few quick tips to keep in mind. For those who already have a horse (or probably a stable of horses), check to see if youre following these tips:

1. Pick the right horse – theres an array of horse breeds for you to choose from. It can be quite overwhelming, especially if you’re only now learning about horses. Dont rush things. Give yourself time to check out whats available at stables near you.

American Quarter Horses, Arabians, Thoroughbreds, Appaloosas, and Warmbloods are among the most popular breeds chosen by horse owners. Of course, Ponies make it to the top of the list of children and teens who wish to own horses.

2. Buy all the necessary tools and equipment – you need more than just a sleeping pad in one corner of your home for your horse. In fact, even if you have a huge house, its not likely that a horse will thrive in your house much like a cat or a dog will. He needs an environment specifically “designed” to meet his needs.

If you don’t have space on your property for a barn, you’ll have to look for a boarding barn before you purchase your first horse. Make the necessary arrangements so that your horse can move right in as soon as you make your decision.

3. Stock up on horse health info – you have to read up and learn everything you can about horses and their needs. This way, you’ll be able to prepare accordingly to provide everything that will keep them healthy and happy. This is also a way for you to ensure that the investment you put into buying your horse will not go to waste.

Note too that your horse may get sick at some point, and you want to know what to do when it happens. Read up on the common diseases, like hoof and skin diseases. Have ready your shortlist of veterinarians and ferriers too.

Happy Horse Ownership

Whatever your reasons are for wanting to own a horse, and whatever benefits you wish to gain from doing so, its always best to be prepared before you take the plunge into horse ownership. There are a lot of other horse lovers who are generous with their knowledge and time.

Connect with other horse owners, go to expos and shows, take riding lessons, and immerse yourself in the horse world. These are just a few of the simple things you can do in order to be ready for responsible and happy horse ownership.

Categories: Pets