How Owning a Dog Makes You Healthier

You might want to file this under the category of 'things every one already knows' but now there's scientific proof that sharing your life with a dog can help make you healthier. The Mayo Clinic just published a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showing research that "active people generally live longer and are at less risk for serious health problems like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and some cancers." [source] … [Read more...]

Emergency Preparedness For Pets

With Hurricane Dorian advancing upon Puerto Rico and heading toward Florida, now is a good time to make sure that you are prepared for a weather emergency. By the way, this year the Atlantic hurricane season began on May 20 and extends through November 30. Even if you are not currently in the storm's path or imminent danger, it is always sage advice to go through a checklist of safety tips and have a disaster plan in mind.   IMMEDIATE … [Read more...]

Why Do Dogs Love Playing Fetch?

If you have ever spent any time with a dog, you know that some of them absolutely love to play fetch! Like their two-footed counterparts, as they get on middle to senior years, the mind may say "go" but the body often says "nah, not so fast." But when their energy is high and their muscles are full of vigor, some dogs will cajole you into playing this game endlessly until either they, or most likely you, tire out. Retrievers and spaniels are especially … [Read more...]

Puppy Dog Eyes

According to newly-published research, dogs have perfected the eye brow raise by using facial muscles that are stronger than their cousins, the wolves. Over thousands of years of dog domestication, people preferred pups that could pull off that sad sack, take-care-of-me look. And that, in turn, encouraged the development of the facial muscle that creates it. "The researchers believe dogs, over their relatively short 33,000 years of domestication, used … [Read more...]

Keeping Your Dog Safe in Hot Weather

As we enjoy the last few days of spring and the torrid summer heats begins in earnest, now is the time to take extra precaution when venturing outside with your dog. While heat stroke, or hyperthermia, are always a risk for pets when left in confined area (like your car) without proper ventilation, risks abound even for the causal daily walk. Dogs who are exposed to high temperatures for long periods of time are at risk of dehydration and overheating, … [Read more...]

Basic Commands for your Dog

Having a core set of commands that your dog understands and follows is a good idea when establishing the relationship. Canines are pack animals and also look for rules to the power hierarchy. Remembering that you are always the alpha dog will help keep them both happy and safe. It is innate for the canine to want to serve or please their master. This dynamic will help keep them safe while they are young and vulnerable. And it will help keep them content … [Read more...]

Is it safe to walk your dog off leash?

I have never let my dogs off leash in a public area regardless of how safe it is. Now, that being said I have small dogs and perhaps if I had bigger dogs I would feel differently. But lately I have heard of, and experienced some troubling incidents regarding dogs allowed off leash. My nephew’s dog was recently viciously attacked by an off leash dog. He lost an ear and was terribly traumatized. A friend who occasionally lets her dog off leash in a rural … [Read more...]

Labrador Retriever Most Popular Breed Once Again

For the 28th consecutive year, the Labrador Retriever is once again the most popular breed according to the American Kennel Club registry list for 2018. Statistics were released on March 20, 2019 as AKC registration continues to expand for the sixth year in a row. Rankings were determined by tracking a year's worth of national registrations for purebred dogs. You can find out more about AKC’s dog and litter registration here. * * * * * * * Also of … [Read more...]

2019 Westminster Wrap-up; King the wire fox terrier named Best in Show

What began with over 2,800 dogs competing in the 2019 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden in New York City, culminated last Tuesday with the crowning of the Best in Show. Fittingly, a wire fox terrier named "King" (GCHB CH Kingarthur Van Foliny Home) took home the crown. It was the 15th time in the show's history that the breed had been named top dog. It also continued the dominance for terriers overall as they have won Best in Show … [Read more...]

Slugger Ready to Take a Swing at Westminster

The 143rd annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show begins next weekend. Breed judging will be held on Monday and Tuesday, February 11th and 12th. There are 2879 dogs entered and 203 different breeds represented this year. In last week's post (2019 Westminster Dog Show - A Closer Look), I wrote about how the competition works and the list of breeds participating. And before that, I presented a Dog Show Primer with a look back at past winners and a … [Read more...]

2019 Westminster Dog Show – A Closer Look

The 143rd Annual Westminster Dog Show is just two weeks away. And if you have ever wondered what goes on during the event, which dogs participate or how they determine the winners, I am about to give you a closer look. In fact, if you have Netflix, there is a wonderful series entitled "7 Days Out" and their first episode focuses on the days leading up to last year's contest. It gives an up close look at several of the furry competitors as well as their … [Read more...]

2019 Westminster Kennel Club & Dog Show Primer

The 143rd edition of the most famous dog show in the world is coming up in three weeks. The Meet & Compete Featuring the Masters Agility Championship will be held February 9th. The Masters Obedience Championship as well as the main event will begin on Monday February 11th. Here's a quick overview of the schedule, past winners and some basic facts to get you primed. We will have more information in the coming days leading up to the show. I will talk … [Read more...]

Two New Breeds to Debut at 2019 Westminster Kennel Club and Dog Show

The 143rd annual edition of the Westminster Kennel Club and Dog Show is a little over a month away. The 2019 show will be held once again in New York City on Monday & Tuesday, February 11-12. This year, two new breeds will be making their official debut in the competition. Grand Basset Griffon Vendéen (also know as "GBGV” or “Grand"), an active and never high-strung scent hound out of France known as a poor man's hunting dog, will compete in the Hound … [Read more...]

Should We Sleep With Our Dogs?

Many pet owners may secretly wonder whether they should let their dogs sleep with them at night. For some fur parents that question may never enter their mind as the resounding answer would be "Of course! Why would anyone ask such a foolish question?" Personally, I can’t imagine NOT sleeping with my dogs. When I am at home, my dogs are always with me, morning, noon and night. When I first got married, my husband worked long hours, often nights and … [Read more...]

Can Dogs Eat Turkey and Other Thanksgiving Safety Questions

The fall holiday season is well underway. Halloween with all its sugary delights is in the books. But now the real festive eating begins with Thanksgiving. So with so much food sure to be around your house during the big meal times as well as for snacks, which foods are safe and more importantly, which ones pose special dangerous to your pets? Can Dogs Eat Turkey? According to the experts with the AKC, the answer here is a resounding 'Yes' and 'No.' … [Read more...]

Top Halloween Pet Costumes for 2018

Pet lovers are going all in this Halloween with millenials, especially, taking part. “Out of the 31.3 million Americans planning to dress their pets in costumes, millennials (25-34) are most likely to dress up their pets, the highest we have seen in the history of our surveys,” according to Prosper Insights Executive Vice President of Strategy Phil Rist. 11% of all pet lovers will dress their animal in a pumpkin costume, while 7 percent will dress their … [Read more...]

What Should You Name Your Dog?

What are the rules or guidelines for naming your dog? I have always felt that dogs should have people names as opposed to “thing” names. They are, after all, members of your family, not possessions. Personally, giving them a human name makes me feel like I am showing them more respect as a living, breathing, loving creature on this Earth. My dogs all have people names. We name the stray dogs in the shelter, everyone has different ideas. I don’t know why … [Read more...]

Dogs and their Powerful Sense of Smell

With over 300 million receptors in their noses, dogs have a sense of smell one thousand times keener than humans.  This does not put them at the top of the heap. Bears, sharks, kiwi, snakes, and moths also posses superior senses of smell.  However, it is the mighty elephant which tops the sniff charts with the strongest sense of smell identified in a single species so far, a new study has found. "Published in the journal Genome Research, new data has … [Read more...]

Is Your Dog Happy?

I think my dogs are happy. They are healthy, comfortable and well fed (ok, maybe too well fed) and certainly loved! I’ve always tried to pay attention to their body language for real clues as to how they feel. Clearly they are sometimes stressed if there are guests or workers in the house. And I know they are very happy to play outside with each other and have a treat. Many times I just know they are happy and content but can't quite put into words a … [Read more...]

Do Dogs Grieve When They Lose A Companion?

A few months ago one of our older Chihuahuas passed away. She was very bonded to our other Chihuahua named Carl. They had spent their lives together from puppyhood. I always fed them together and Carl would never eat until Leeloo ate. In fact she would eat his food, picking out the good bits while he watched. Then he would eat what was left of his food and she would eat her food. They would switch back and forth until their bowls were cleaned. When she … [Read more...]

Kids and Dogs: A Parent’s Guide to Canine Body Language & Safety

One of our readers wrote in to share this thoughts after reading the post "Understanding Your Dog’s Body Language" from our archives. In that post, I discussed some of the warning signs that your dog is distressed and how to deal with displacement behaviors. Richard Cross is the editor at The Dog Clinic, and I am pleased to share his thoughts... "This is a really important topic for anyone who spends time with dogs - but it's vital for parents. I've … [Read more...]

Do Dogs Dream Like Humans?

It is generally believed that dogs dream about their everyday experiences, just like humans. Sleep allows animals to consolidate and encode memories to learn things. Dogs probably dream about their owners or about playing with other dogs. This notion is not new. More than two thousand years ago, in "The History of Animals," Aristotle wrote “It would appear that not only do men dream, but horses also, and dogs, and oxen; aye, and sheep, and goats, and … [Read more...]

How Much Do Dogs Sleep?

My dogs love a good nap.  They can also sleep all night and often keep to a schedule, which, as I do my research, is not often the case for many canines. … [Read more...]

Why ‘Dog-Speak’ Is Important in Communicating With Your Pet

Do you speak "baby-talk" with your pet?   It's that high-pitched voice with exaggerated emotion you might also have done with a human baby. Well, now researchers at York University have found that such speech interaction with your dogs improves attention and may actually help with the bonding process. I had heard about this idea before and always believed there was some truth to it, based on my own personal experiences. We use “baby voice" in the … [Read more...]

AKC’s Most Popular Dog Breeds

For the 27th year in a row, the most popular dog breed in America is once again the Labrador Retriever according to the American Kennel Club. German Shepherd Dogs still remain in second place and Golden Retrievers hang on to third place like previous years. The French Bulldog continues to increase in popularity - up two spots since the last rankings and seven rungs since 2013. Meanwhile, the German Shorthaired Pointer made its first appearance in the top … [Read more...]

Is Being An Animal Lover in Your Genes?

One of the long-asked questions regarding people and their pets is "Are animal people born that way or are they made?" My family is full of dog lovers. And I have told my kids to choose partners that love dogs. It says a lot about a person. I don’t trust people who don’t love dogs! As I detailed in my book DOG STORIES WITH HAPPY ENDINGS, I grew up around animals, so a world full of pets is the very definition of normal for me. Realizing that there … [Read more...]

Westminster 2018 Wrap-up; Flynn with the Win!

The 142nd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show concluded Tuesday night with Best in Show. The lineup of Champions was really impressive, the best we have seen in years in my opinion! All the dogs really played to the crowd, bringing lots of cheers from the audience. The Sussex Spaniel, “Bean" was adorable posing for the judge and getting loud applause from the crowd. You can see his personality on display here. The winner was Flynn (GCHP CH Belle Creek's … [Read more...]

2018 Westminster Dog Show Primer

The 2018 Westiminster Kennel club and Dog show is fast approaching. My dog, GCHS Hallmark’s Sandbox Slugger at Markenhaus will be there. He is professionally handled by Jessy Sutton. “Slugger” is a smooth-coat Chihuahua. He's ranked #9 Breed and #5 All breed in the country right now. At age two, Slugger has won a best in show, reserve best in show and has multiple group placements. We are excited to see him compete, but the Chihuahua ring is super strong … [Read more...]

142nd Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show

The 142nd Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is coming up in two weeks. The main event will be held Monday and Tuesday, Feb. 12-13, 2018 at Pier 92/94 in Madison Square Garden. FS1 will broadcast the Groups and Best in Show live on Monday and Tuesday evenings from 8 pm to 11 pm EST. Hounds, Toys, Non-Sporting, and Herding groups compete on Monday night. Working, Sporting, and Terrier groups as well as Best in Show will occur on Tuesday night. Other … [Read more...]

Kennel Cough in Dogs

Kennel Cough is an extremely contagious upper respiratory infection, also known as Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC) and Canine Infectious Tracheobronchitis. It affects the dog’s lungs, windpipe and voice box. While it may cause many uncomfortable symptoms for most dogs, usually only young puppies, geriatric dogs, and those with comprised immune systems are at risk of its life-threatening consequences. If not treated properly, pneumonia … [Read more...]

Holiday Safety Tips for your Pet

With the holidays in full swing, there's lots of fun and excitement all around. As Andy Williams once crooned, "It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!" However, in order to make sure that this festive season is both a happy and a safe one, take a few moments to view it from the perspective of your four-legged family members. What is merely a change of pace or a holiday tradition, can be a bit overwhelming for someone who stands only a foot or two off … [Read more...]

2017’s Most Popular Dog Names

The top dog names for 2017 are once again Max for boy dogs and Bella for girl dogs. Those two names have topped's annual popularity list for each of the past five years it's been released. Ownership Trends Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research. In addition to Max, the top names for males were Charlie, Cooper, Buddy, Jack, Rocky, Bear, Tucker, Oliver and Duke. After Bella, rounding out the top 10 for female names were Lucy, Daisy, … [Read more...]

DogTV, Is Your Pet a Fan?

I came across an older article on the benefits of watching television for your dogs. It mentioned a network called DogTV, which delivers 24-hour programming for dogs. The idea, they say, is that flipping on the channel while you go out for the day will keep your pet stimulated, entertained and relaxed. How have I known about this until today? It is wonderful and my pets enjoy it - I think. Well so do I actually! The company was launched in Israel in … [Read more...]

November is National Adopt a Senior Dog Month

For the last several years, animal lovers have marked November as National 'Adopt a Senior Dog Month.' There are around 6-7 million dogs and cats living in US shelters each year and many are considered "senior" or "older adoptable" pets. Animals with just an average of just 25% of their lives left are considered senior. Dogs that are age seven and older are also often called "senior." On social media, this month is also promoted as #AdoptaSeniorPetMonth, … [Read more...]

Dressing up our Pets at Halloween

Oh, how we love dressing up our little ones in the family for Halloween. No, not the human kids in our household, but the four-legged furry children in our lives. According to the data (National Retail Federation’s Halloween Consumer Spending Survey, 2015), Americans will spend a total of about $6.9 billion, or $74.34 per person. And for every $2.71, we spend on a kid's costume, $1 will be spent on an outfit for the cat or dog. With more than 179 … [Read more...]

Stories of Hope for Rescued Pets Amidst the Tales of Devastation Caused by Recent Hurricanes

Hurricane season has wreaked havoc on several regions in the past month. There was Hurricane Harvey in Texas, Hurricane Irma in Florida, and now Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the Bahamas. These natural disasters have killed dozens of people, destroyed thousands of homes and caused widespread flooding.  And the tales of devastation and suffering have affected both humans as well as our beloved animals. While much of the recent news has been tragic … [Read more...]

Clear The Shelters – Adoption Fees Waived on Saturday

Area shelters are teaming with the Humane Society of the U.S. to host Clear the Shelters, the third annual nationwide pet adoption drive. Over 700 participating shelters across the country will waive adoption fees on Saturday, August. 19, 2017, as part of the nationwide NBCUniversal Clear the Shelters initiative. Over 50,000 pets found their forever homes in 2016. To find a participating shelter in your area, visit the interactive map at … [Read more...]

Are Pets Good for your Kid’s Health? New Research Sees No Link

It's long been thought that having a pet around the house improves your child's health. Now research is saying that there is no clear evidence that is the case. We love our pets and consider them part of the family - that much is certain. A Pew Research Centre study of over 3,000 adults found that 85 percent of dog owners consider their pets to be a part of the family. Past research studies have suggested that social skills in children grew stronger the … [Read more...]

Heat Exhaustion and Heatstroke in Dogs

With near record high temperatures across the country this summer, it is certainly time to be extra careful when taking your dog for a walk or spending time outside. And it should go without saying, though many people are still either careless or just uninformed, never leave your dogs inside a care for any length of time when the temperature is hot. Remember, on an 85-degree day, it takes only 10 minutes for the interior of your parked car to climb to … [Read more...]

How Often Should You Bathe Your Dog?

It’s summertime and the dogs are outside more often, enjoying the warm weather. There’s nothing like a sunny day for a Chihuahua and a romp in the yard along with a roll in something stinky. With all that fun and play, the result is bath time! For our family, bathing our pets is not very traumatic. The retired show dogs are used to getting a quick bath in the deep kitchen sink. When they were going to several shows a month, I would bathe them often. … [Read more...]