Dogs Almanac A potpourri of dogs information, training tips, canine oddities pet supplies and items of interest to all dog owners.

Anonymity Won't Bring Your Lost Dog Back Home

Ever read those lost dogs ads in the newspaper classifieds? They frequently indicate the dog's breed, size, coloration, markings and name; even give the color of the collar, if one was being worn. Sadly, though, too often that collar is barren of information without a suitable I.D. tag attached. Then, whoever finds the lost dog has at least two strikes against ever returning him home. Of course, an owner may trust to luck (about the same odds as the lottery) that a Good Samaritan will scrutinize all the classifieds and local veterinarian bulletin boards in his best attempt to get Rover home.

Dogs Can’t Always Find Their Way Home

Don't bet on it though. Your lost dog is pretty unlikely to find his own way home, unless he just never wandered very far, and you can't be sure he'll always get lost near home either. It's not unusual for a dog to escape confinement when traveling with his family or being shipped to a distant destination. That can really compound the problem if he's lacking proper I.D.

Dog’s Basic Dog Tags Information Needed On I.D.

So, it's glaringly obvious that your pooch's collar should bear a tag containing all the pertinent information needed to get him back to you, quickly and safely. And, that he wears that collar routinely. A basic dog tags information I.D. will have your phone number, an alternate phone and address, and the word REWARD on it. That last can be a life-saver, too! Some unscrupulous individuals do pick up strays and lost dogs and deliver them to research laboratories for a fee. But seeingREWARD on the tag may well give them second thoughts, namely that a pet owner is more likely to offer much more money than a laboratory.

Consider Beyond Basic Info Too

Going beyond the basic tag is a good idea to consider, as well. For instance, a tag that includes various supplementary information. Say, your vet's phone number and a neighbor's in case you're away and can't be reached immediately. Several such I.D. tags are marketed at many pet supplies outlets and on line.. 
Don't let too much more time go by to get your dog properly I.D.'d.

"Fine Pet ID Tags" offers custom engraved Pet ID Tags for Lovely Pets.

An AKC First

Do you know what was the first breed registered in the Stud Book of the American Kennel Club? Well, English setter fanciers have that bragging right. It was an English setter named Adonis, entered in 1878.

Dog Kennel You Can Build Easily

Sure you want your dog to share your home, but there are times when you simply cannot give him all the outdoor exercise he needs and you want for him. Then, too, sometimes circumstances may dictate that he can't be housebound for an extended time.

Those occasions fairly scream for an outside kennel to come to the rescue. Although buying pre-built fence panels is a quick solution, it can be pricey and time consuming. Better to consider a do-it-yourself project that will save you some money and provide a sense of accomplishment and pride.

Check local zoning regulations to make sure you can legally build a kennel on your property. That done, carefully determine the exact size and location of the area to be set aside for the unit. Be sure to include suffcient room inside the kennel enclosure for a suitable dog house to keep pooch safe from sun, wind, rain and snow.

Thoroughly research your building materials before buying them. If you're uncertain about any aspect, ask questions of the seller. Tell him the size and breed of your dog so he can be helpful in your selection. Remember, quality materials will always be your best bet.

Besides wire, either rolls of the welded type or pre-built panels, you will need substantial supporting posts to attach that wire to. Make sure everything is secure enough to safeguard your dog inside while keeping other dogs or animals from getting in.

Once built, your outside kennel should be inspected regularly for continued proper maintenance.

Help Your Dog Flee The Fleas

In the good old summertime lots of good things happen. Fleas and ticks are not among them, however. Warm, humid areas are manna from heaven for fleas; they thrive there and wait patiently for your dog…or you, to pass by. Then, they jump on, and, can easily find a welcome ride into your home. Ditto for ticks, which flourish in wooded areas with thick tall grass. Even though ticks seldom infest areas of your home, they pose a higher likelihood of carrying and transmitting infectious diseases such as Lyme and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.

Once a female flea finds your dog as a host, it can lay as many as 18 eggs per day, and soon infest your carpets, furniture, in fact virtually all parts of your home. Don’t let this start to happen. Prevent it by consulting your veterinarian about treatment options for your dog. Also, remember it’s important to continue any treatment in order to eradicate newly hatched fleas from all those eggs.

It’s a good plan to cut off pesky fleas and ticks at the pass by having a reliable lawn service apply a special treatment to your lawn and other areas around home.

Pet Supplies

“His Own Space”

Every puppy needs some personal space, a place to call his own, where he can safely escape the stress and rigors of a busy, or even chaotic, household. A soft rug or comfy mat may be fine for sleeping, in a calm environment. But a crate is a far better choice to ensure his continuing successful training and offer him security and sanctuary whenever he wishes. Properly crate training puppy guarantees that a crate will soon take on the role and solitude of a snug, comfortable den.

Which Crate Is Best?

Several crate options exist for the choosing. Which kind’s best for you, and of course for your dog, boils down pretty much to personal preference. You might choose one of strong plastic construction, similar to those many airlines provide for transporting dogs These are the sturdiest variety. But equally sturdy, with the advantage of lightweight, are the aluminum type. Finally, and lightest of all, is the open wire crate, combining handy portability with superior ventilation in hot weather.

Crate Size Does Matter

A note of special importance, no matter which kind of crate you select: bear in mind that it should be big enough to comfortably house your puppy at full maturity.

For Your Dog and You, Winter Does Come

When all the vividly colored fallen leaves of autumn are raked off your lawn, it’s time—sigh, sigh—to give serious thought to Winter. Your dog, your car and you need winterizing. Easy enough for you and your car, but your pooch requires a bit more thought. To remind you of a few practical things to think about, check these out:

• Exercise: even though the cold weather makes you shudder at thoughts of spending more than the three minutes Rover takes to relieve himself outside, you, as a responsible, caring owner, just have to “suck it up” and take him for a needed exercise walk. At least five minutes must be devoted to it.

• Grooming: a regular three-minute brushing must still be a part of the normal winter routine. Obviously, it’s not a time for short coat-clipping of long haired dogs, but removing dead undercoat hair by stripping will help keep your dog’s coat healthy and looking its best.

• Extra Protection: if a short haired breed, your dog may require some added protection from frigid weather. Providing a good quality coat will do the job nicely to keep your dog warm during winter walks. For really bad cold weather walking, a set of dog boots may be in order, as well.

• Playtime: since your dog , like most others, will probably enjoy a few minutes of playtime cavorting in the snow, you may question his eating the fluffy white stuff. It’s not uncommon for most pooches to imbibe in snow eating, and in small amounts, it’s not harmful. If his snow appetite becomes obsessive, it might signal a visit to your veterinarian to check for a possible problem.

Winter, if considered objectively, can be a welcome change of routine and pace for both you and your best buddy.

What's In A Name?

Some folks show a marked indifference when choosing their dog’s name. Seems like any old moniker will serve the purpose. King, Queenie, Lassie, Rover, any such as long as it's gender specific will do. The most casual example yet heard of was simply "Dog." How imaginative! How caring!

Yet, what your dog’s name is shows a lot about you as well as about how you regard him. It can provide a solid clue about the kind of relationship you intend and want to have with him. Some names convey a happy-go-lucky attitude, both in dog and owner. Others, a stiffer, more formal relationship.  People are inclined to assess a dog and react to it, based on the name you've given him. Tell someone, jokingly, your dog's name is "Killer," and watch them instinctively recoil, at least momentarily, till your sense of humor (perverse or not) dawns on them.

Among the most popular dog names today: Max, Maxwell, Sam, Samantha, Lady, Maggie, Buddy, Shasta, Holly,  Bear and Brandy. What's your favorite dog name?

Who Says Dogs Can’t Fly?

Dogs traveling by air are subject to various restrictions and legal regulations formulated by The United States Department of Agriculture along with the International Air Transport Association. Additionally, the airlines themselves also have varying regulations; which means it's always wise to contact your chosen airline well ahead of your planned shipping date to review their individual procedures and requirements.

Responsible airline carriers usually have written rules for canine travel. Such guidelines provide verification of the airline's concern over the importance of safely transporting dogs and other animals. Medium-to-large dogs must be crated and travel in the cargo section. Should you be taking your pooch on vacation with you, arranging to have him shipped on your particular non-stop flight will save time and inconvenience at your final destination. If you own a small dog, it's often possible to crate it and have it taken with you right on board the plane. No matter what airline you choose, though, it's important to familiarize yourself with its regulations well in advance.

Separation Anxiety...Of A Sort

Raw egg yokes are good for your dog’s coat, no doubt about it. But since dogs cannot digest egg whites, unless you remove them, you’re doing more harm than good. Separate the whites from the yokes, and cook them to preserve biotin, a key vitamin for good health.

Lemon Law

Why isn’t there a Lemon Law to help protect puppy and dog buyers from fraud perpetrated by unscrupulous puppy mills and shady breeders? Far too common are the tales told by folks who have been victimized in dealings with such lowlife individuals. Oh sure, when a buyer complains about a misrepresented puppy, sometimes the seller offers to exchange the pup for another from an upcoming litter, knowing full well that the buyer will become too attached to the puppy to give it up. Thus, stalling this way works well for the conniving breeder. A Lemon Law with teeth, making mandatory money back guaranteed for the buyer, while still allowing him to keep the puppy would go far toward resolving the problem.