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PetTech Certified and Proud :)

Posted by nhshnds on November 12, 2018 at 10:35 AM

Bernadette and I had a blast certifying for Pet CPR, Animal First Aid and Senior Pet Care through PetTech.  We loved meeting other Pet Care Professionals and pet owner's who want to ensure their pets get the best care possible if an emergency ever arises. We are now part of an on-going campaign to Prevent One Million Pet ER visits annually.  Whoo Hoo!


8 Weird Things Dogs Do When They Poop

Posted by nhshnds on October 25, 2018 at 3:20 PM

Have you ever noticed how attentive your dog is to your attentiveness while he is indisposed?  I wasn't sure if mine were looking at me thinking "What are you looking at?"  or if they wanted me to see how "good" they were being by pooping for me :D  This article lays to rest any questions you may have had pertaining to the subject of dog pooping behavior.  iheartdogs!


8 Weird Things Dogs Do When They Poop

by Dina Fantegrossion October 22, 2018

                 


Watching our pups poop is a big part of every dog parent’s life. The frequency, color, and consistency of their “offerings” tell us a great deal about their health, so we dutifully pay attention whenever our pooches assume the position.

You may have noticed when dogs poop they often perform a number of behaviors that may seem weird to us. But rest assured, they actually serve an important purpose.

1. Holding Out for the Perfect Spot

Does your dog search out the perfect poop spot the way a bloodhound tracks a missing toddler? You’ve got a picky pooper on your hands!

Carlo Siracusa, director of the Small Animal Behavior Service at the University of Pennsylvania’s veterinary teaching hospital, says the primary reason for this behavior is communication with other dogs.

“These messages can tell your dog how many other dogs are in the immediate area, the sexual status of those dogs…whether a particular dog is a friend or an enemy, what he or she had for lunch, and when they were last in the area,” Siracusa says.

Picky behavior when dogs poop may also be their way of prolonging their walk or dealing with overstimulation and/or performance anxiety.

2. Making Eye Contact

This behavior is a bit awkward. Your dog selects the ideal poop spot, positions himself perfectly, and then stares directly into your eyes while relieving himself. Strangely enough, this uncomfortable exchange has a very reasonable evolutionary explanation.

“Your dog is instinctively aware of his defenselessness. But your dog also knows that she is a part of your ‘pack.’ You are a member of the family group,” writes iHeartDogs’ resident veterinarian, Dr. Kathryn Primm. “If your dog watches you during this time, it is because she is depending on you to give her a body language signal or ‘heads up’ if she should be afraid. She may also be looking to you to possibly defend her should the need arise. If you suddenly leap away, you can bet your dog will respond also.”

3. Hiding

Quite the opposite of the dog that stares into your eyes, some pups prefer privacy when they poop. These dogs may duck behind a tree or back their fanny into a cluster of bushes. Although it is a very different method than staring, this behavior is also all about safety. Concealment gives them a sense of security during their most vulnerable moments.

4. Pooping on Concrete

This strange behavior actually goes against dogs’ natural instinct to relieve themselves on soft surfaces. When dogs poop, most prefer grass or soil for better traction. However, dogs kept in pens or only provided limited space may develop the habit of eliminating on concrete.

Rescue dogs often display this behavior after life on a chain or extended time in a shelter. These dogs can definitely be trained to use the grass rather than your patio. Just remember, dogs from these situations need patience and compassion. Contact a trainer or behaviorist if you need help.

5. Spinning

Does your dog dig and circle before deciding on the perfect sleeping position? Behaviorists believe this is an attempt to ensure the spot they have chosen to bed down in for the night is safe. When dogs poop they are also in a vulnerable position to predators. Spinning allows them to check their immediate surroundings for potential threats.

Additionally, circling and sniffing help stimulate the bowels and flattens down the grass, so other dogs can easily find what they’ve left behind.

The spinning and rearranging before having a bowel movement may also have something to do with the earth’s magnetic poles. When dogs poop, they prefer to do so “with the body being aligned along the north-south axis under calm magnetic field conditions.” However, scientists do not yet understand why.

6. Kicking

According to VetStreet‘s Dr. Patty Khuly, there are two major reasons dogs may kick after they poop. First, they may feel the instinctual need to keep their “den” clean by burying their stool. Second, kicking the ground helps spread their territory-marking pheromones far and wide as a message to other dogs.

“In the wild, canines such as wolves, dingoes and foxes may kick the ground after elimination for sanitary reasons. They are simply covering up the mess,” Khuly says. “But the behavior is also a way to mark territory. All dogs have glands in their feet that secrete pheromones, and a couple of backward scratches into the earth releases those chemicals.”

7. Scooting

Scooting after a bowel movement may indicate something is irritating your dog’s backside. It could be diarrhea, constipation, full anal sacs, or intestinal parasites. If this is a new behavior for your dog, check in with your vet to rule out any serious conditions.

On the other hand, your dog may simply have high hygeine standards and consistently scoot after pooping as a way to “wipe” himself clean. No pooch wants to develop the dreaded “poop butt!”

8. Running

Many dogs take a celebratory sprint around the yard after a good bowel movement. It may seem like just another silly canine quirk, but there are actually several possible motives behind your pup’s post-poop “zoomies.”

For many dogs, pooping outside means a treat from their owner. Scampering about may be their equivalent of an end zone dance because they know they are going to get a reward. Others – especially longer haired dogs – may use this method to dislodge a stubborn “cling-on” from their fanny.

Finally, pooping brings on a powerful feeling of relief, especially if your pup has been holding it for a while. When dogs poop, the decreased pressure simply makes them feel like celebrating.

Did we leave out any strange dog pooping behaviors? Tell us about your dog’s weird bathroom habits in the comments!



3 Strategies For Safely Catching a Loose Dog

Posted by nhshnds on May 8, 2018 at 10:30 AM

I recently found myself in a critical situation trying to prevent a loose dog from being run over in heavy traffic.  The anxious pup was weaving in and out of traffic lanes trying to get across a median to the other side.  Traffic had come to crawl and we were three cars back before we saw the reason why.  Good citizens were stopping to let the dog get out of their way, but, unfortunately some not so patient (or good natured) were going around the slowed cars honking their horns and the poor dog didn't know which way to turn without seeing metal and rubber.  I had my daughter pull over to the side of the road, jumped out and yelled a hopeful "Come on, Come get a treat!"  in the hopes this pup knew the sound and spelling of the word  T R E A T S :)  Whether it was the word TREATS or the hopeful inflection of my voice, the pup turned, stopped and stared.  I squatted down and began to clap my hands and to my joy he came to me.  Now, how was I going to keep this HUGE, heavy pit bull mix with me and out of the road.  I had my daughter get out and open the door and immediately the big fella jumped in the front seat.  He was so big and my car was so small that I had to literally push on his butt to get the door closed.  I squeezed into the back seat to observe my daughter hanging half out of her driver window to avoid the slurps of thankfulness and drool from the thought of  T R E A T S.   It was a happy ending for this pup as we were able to get him to his owner almost within the hour. 

So....what to do if your pet is a runner or you run across another loose dog that needs your help?  The following article offers some good tips.



3 Strategies For Safely Catching A Loose Dog

by Amber Kingon May 02, 2018

 

Whether it’s your dog that slipped their leash or a stray running through traffic, catching a loose dog is never as easy as it sounds. Your first instinct is to give chase, but that rush of energy is rarely the right move. Dogs that are afraid, skittish, or simply overly excited will do everything they can to elude your grasp—even when that means putting themselves in danger. If you want to bring your flighty pup back home safely, you’ll have to resist the urge to run after them and try these safer strategies.

 

#1 – Stop, Drop, and Freeze

 

One of the best strategies for catching a loose dog is doing the exact opposite of what they think you’ll do. If your dog thinks they’re playing a fun game of “catch me if you can,” they’re expecting you to chase them down. It’s your job to remember the game is rigged, and their superior speed and agility means you’ll most likely lose. Take control of the game by throwing a curve ball. You’ll feel silly, but stop where you are and sit or lay down on the ground. Don’t call the dog’s name or pat your leg to get them to come over. They’ll either be intrigued by your strange behavior or worried there’s something wrong with you, and they’ll quit the game to investigate.

#2 – Use Calming Signals

 

If the dog you’re trying to catch is especially skittish—like a stray with few experiences with humans—your go-to moves will look like a threat. Walking directly toward the dog, holding out your hand, patting your leg, and making eye contact will only make them feel more afraid. Instead of overwhelming them with your eagerness, speak their language and use canine calming signals. Only look at them with peripheral vision and make all your movements lateral instead of direct. Yawning and licking your lips are translated to calming signals in doggy language, and kneeling to make your body look less imposing will also encourage them to come to you.

 

#3 – Appeal to Their Appetite

 

Few dogs can resist the temptation of a good treat. If it’s your pet you’re trying to catch, simply holding a treat in your hand could get their attention. But if the pup doesn’t trust you, start by tossing treats a few feet away. Let them approach the food on their own terms. Once they eat the first one, you can start tossing the good stuff a little closer to you. When they’re eating treats in your general vicinity without hesitation, sit on the ground and extend an especially high-value food item in your hand. Be patient and don’t make sudden movements or noises.

 

Doing the wrong thing when trying to catch a loose dog could send them running into traffic or threaten them enough that they lash out with fearful aggression. Panic is contagious, and if you yell, run, or act overly stressed, you’ll pass those feelings on to the dog. If you can stay calm and encourage the dog to do the same, you’ll have a better shot at a happy ending.

Written by Amber King

 

Helping Your Pet Deal with Grief of Losing a Family Pet

Posted by nhshnds on February 23, 2018 at 11:10 AM

 

When my Zoe Girl's mom and sister's family moved away and she no longer saw them, she became very depressed.  They lived next door for the first two years of her life, visiting each other daily,  playing together and barking at the same squirrels and animals that might run across their yards.  Her grief was such that she had no appetite, laid around all day and showed little joy at walk opportunities or even treats.  She was hurting for the loss of her fur family and  could  not understand what could have happened to them.  After a couple weeks I got the idea that if she was able to visit them and see they were ok, that it might help lift that depression.  So, I made the arrangements and was so glad I did!  Their reunion was so heartwarming to watch, it brought tears to my eyes .They smelled, ran, played until they were all exhausted and when it was time to go they parted ways  Zoe had a skip in her step and a wagging tail.    Just knowing her mom and sis were ok seemed to help her say goodbye and move on.  This type of turnaround doesn't happen so quickly or with such a happy ending when the depression is due to loss of a loved one.  So what can you do to help your pet deal with their grief when they lose a companion pet that meant so much to them?  This article below may give some insight.

https://iheartdogs.com/8-ways-to-help-your-dog-deal-with-the-grief-of-losing-a-family-pet-2/?utm_source=IHD-Email-Newsletter-022318&utm_medium=0000&utm_campaign=IHD-Email-Newsletter-022318&goal=0_02022df5fc-7d0562424d-186180702&mc_cid=7d0562424d&mc_eid=14cba0ac2e


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