Let’s talk about food allergies today.  Dogs are very similar to people they are both mammals and eat similar food types. Just as in people dogs can have allergies to different food items, such as wheat, and grains.  People may feel some dogs are prone to more allergies than others however this maybe in relation to a breeder or inbreeding. Allergies can be genetic. Just to be clear there is a difference between an allergic reaction and a food intolerance.  Think in terms of a person having an allergic reaction to a food item such as nuts peanuts they can die breathing is cut off or have hives. A food intolerance such as with gluten (not referring to Celic disease) can cause upset stomaches, headaches,  chronic diarrhea.  For dogs such as Cocker Spaniels, retrievers, pit bulls, German Shepard, dachshunds may have allergies. The common foods for allergic reactions are lamb, soy, wheat, eggs, chicken, rabbit, beef.  Dogs can have an allergy to more than one item. 

The big question is how to determine what to feed your dog if they have allergies or how to determine which food item is causing the problem. Dog foods such as California Natural, Innova, Evo, addiction have limited ingredients. California Natural may have only Herring and Sweet Potato or lamb and rice. The dog owner can slowly adjust the foods to determine which item is the culprit. Do not forget the snacks and treats your dog eats. Goodness Gracious has one ingredient treats such as Chicken or lamb jerky. Grizzly treats are just wild Salmon jerky.  The benefit of supplying your dog such as a Rottweiler, yorkie, Chihuahua, Boston Terrier, Bull Dog, rescue mix, with one or two item food is you quickly determine if there is a food allergy.   Do not forget especially if you have a dog who likes to pick up what is around or is fed pizza crust or food items dropped from the table  these will interfere with you determining what is causing the issues. www.funlovingpets.com

My dog will beg for pizza crust. I think he is looking for any extra piece of cheese. Pumpkin is a good gas reducer for your dog, Great Dane, Border Collies, Boxer, Bull Terrier, Greyhound.    With any medical issues your first stop will be at the veterinarians office.  Have your dog/cat checked out for any other issues. 

Good training is also crucial to determine what is the issue. You can be very diligent in keeping certain foods away from you pet, however if the minute they go outside they start eating what is on the ground your hard work was for not.

Good Luck.

Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!”  ~Robin Williams  Do you love spring?  How I love spring the air is fresh note I do not suffer from allergies. The earth is coming to life again after a winter of hibernation.  The sun rises earlier in the morning and sets later in the day.  The idea of spending more time outside playing fetch with my dog. The Winga by Kurgo is a fun way to play with my dog. He loves to catch the frisbee and return it to me.  Does your labradoodle, Golden Retriever, German Shepherd like to play fetch with a frisbee? The Winga allows you to throw the frisbee farther and is the right size.  www.funlovingepts.com carries the Kurgo Winga. It takes the place of a chuck it no sticky drooling mess.

Where do you like to play with your Rottweiler, Great Dane, Springer Spaniel, Labrador, Yorkie? Do you like the beach? Some of my favorite beaches are the Singing beach in Manchester, MA , Cape Cod National parks, Rye Beach in New Hampshire, San Diego Beaches.  Where do you take your Golden Retriever to play?  If you do not live or vacation near a beach a nice field or dog park is also fun to take your furry friend  (Chihuahua, Beagle, boxer, pug, poodle). The Kurgo Winga is good for throwing the frisbee long distances. If this is not feasible the Humunga Stache is fun to watch your dog carry.  Take a picture of your Cocker Spaniel carrying around what looks like a mustache.

Now to a serious side of walking your Boston Terrier, Great Dane, Toy Poodle, Border Collie out in areas with traffic. Make sure they know how to stay with you and not to run out in the street. The high visibility vest are good for both you and your dog. They even have special sizes for a Grey Hound.  You can pick your favorite color hot pink,     bright safety orange, Bright blue, have matching vests.  This will allow the drivers to see you as you walk. There have been people hit by cars because just as the sun is coming up or going down t hey are blinded and can not see the dog walker walking. I have a friend who lost her dachshund to just this. Someone was racing to Dunkin Donuts and did not see her poor little dog at the end of the leash. She now wears the high visibility vest and stays out-of-the-way of people racing for their coffee at Dunkin Donuts.  Maybe you have seen this happen.   What color do you like?  How do you stay safe when walking your rescue dog?

Additional Winga frisbee's

 

Keep your tags close by and easy Wild Salmon treats

 

What fun it is to be out in the crisp cold fresh air with your favorite friend walking through a city like New York, Boston, Minneapolis, San Fransisco, Atlanta or a park or trail, the beach (Naples Florida, Cape Cod).   Just think of the enjoyable landscape and your dog sniffing everything around or playing with a new friend.  I can almost feel the sun on my face now. 

So now that you are out enjoying your walk how do you keep it safe and enjoyable? A few tips or ideas on making the walk safe and fun for you your dog (Labradoodle, Golden Retriever, GreyHound, Chihuahua, Black Lab, Bernese Mountain Dog, Great Danes).

1. The clothing you wear and you dog should be very visible nice and bright for any passing cars to see or if in the woods other walkers. Invest in a high vis vest for you and your dog. They come in special sizes even for Greyhounds with their long lean bodies.  (www.funlovingpets.com has some good choices)  When walking at night include a flashlight or headlamp for extra protection.  The number of pedestrians hit while walking has increased.

2. Keep your dog leashed (Yorkies, cocker spaniels, English Setter, German Shepherd, Terriers) and close to you.  Ever have the problem of the dog walking you instead of you walking the dog? One training tip is to keep a yummy treats in your pocket (Grizzley treats, Salmon Jerky, Cheese, Canine Cavier, wholesome Dog) at random as you walk offer a treat to your dog and at other times a pat on the head. Your dog will never know when a yummy treat will be given.  They will stay close to you incase you are handing them a good treat.  Put a command with the treat such as come or heel so they recognize the sound with the treat and your expectations.

3. Be a responsible pet owner, no one likes to be walking and step in dog doo.  Bring along something to pick up the leavings and bring an appropriate size bag. No need for a big bag with a small dog such as a Chihuahua or Maltese, Silky Terrier, however if you have a large dog  Great Dane Bullmastif, Newfoundland than you need a much bigger bag.

4. Travel with all of their tags license, rabies tag, ID. Keep them on the dog. If you frequently change collars try the Klip It. the Klip It allows you to keep all the tags on the Klip It and just switch the Klip It to the new collar.  No need to fight with each tag individually for changing. Also your dog (Dashund, Beagle, Bulldog, pug, collie) is easily identified if they get loose.

Yorkshire Terrier and Shih Tzu dogs

Image via Wikipedia

How often do you travel with your dog or cat?  Do you travel on a train, plane or car, RV?  Traveling with a pet requires different preparations depending on the type of travel you will be doing , the size of your pet and breed.  If you have a small dog such as a Chihuahua or Shih Tzu, Maltese, small poodles, Italian Greyhounds, Yorkshire Terrier… it can be easier to let them move around or travel under the seat on a plane and train.  Large dogs such as Labadoodles, German Shepherd, Boxer, Bernese Mountain Dogs, English Setter will have to be crated and put in the luggage hold.  If you can there are airlines that are designed for traveling with your dog.  The other consideration is your dog’s breed.  Some breeds are more nervous and can get easily agitated dealing with new and noisy places.  Check with your veterinarian for assistance. 

 Keep in mind the amount of time needed to exercise your dog when traveling.  If traveling by RV or car check out on-line for good dog parks along the way to stop and get out to stretch. This is also beneficial for the driver besides the dog. What a great excuse to meet new people and learn about the area you are traveling through than to walk your dog.  The furry Travelers have a good snack and water bowl for traveling in a car or RV. The food and water can be stored right in the cup holder. (www.funlovingpets.com). Keep your dog restrained in the car or RV, Krugo has a good seat for the small dog and restraints for the larger dog.  The damage and pain that can be inflicted on a dog if they are thrown from the car during an accident or getting something in their eyes when they stick their head out the window.   If you want to be seen by traffic always a good idea check out the high visibility reflective vests for both the dog owner and dog. 

Do you have good tips for traveling with your dog or cat? Which dog parks do you like?