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10 Human Foods that are good for Dogs

30 Aug

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In the last blog post, we discussed about the human foods that are harmful for dogs. Not everything that we eat is safe for dogs, but that doesn’t mean that your pooch is destined to have only canned dog food. There are several food items that are as healthy and nutritious for our dogs as they are for us. So, here are 10 people foods that make for quick and healthy snacks for dogs

Apples

Loaded with fibre, phytonutrients, and vitamins, apples make for a tasty and nutritious treat for dogs. The apple seeds however contain cyanide which can harm your pooch when consumed regularly in large quantities. So it’s advisable to remove the seeds before feeding the fruit.

Carrots

A crunchy snack rich in potassium, beta carotene and fibre, dogs love to munch on this sweet and delicious veggie. Carrots also help prevent bad breath and maintain your dog’s dental health.

 Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is safe for dogs and our furry buddies just seem to just love this sticky and delicious food.  Always opt for the natural and unprocessed variety of peanut butter and the one that does not contain added salt, sugar and preservatives. Since it’s high in fat and calories, use this snack sparingly, especially if your pet is overweight.

Pumpkin

Pumpkin is a good source of fibre and vitamin A. It’s easily digestible, low in calories, and helps relieve diarrhoea in dogs. It’s always better to go for fresh pumpkin. If you plan to get the canned one, make sure it’s free from sugar and preservatives.

Yoghurt

Yoghurt is a good source of protein, calcium, vitamins, zinc and potassium. When choosing yoghurt always opt for the fat-free version, and the one that does not contain sugar or artificial sweeteners.

Sweet Potato

Whether mashed or dehydrated, sweet potatoes are wonderful treats for dogs. They are rich in dietary fibre and contain vitamin B6, vitamin C, beta carotene, and manganese.

Green Beans

Green beans are a great source of fibre, vitamin K, vitamin C, and manganese.  Being low in calories, they are a great snack for overweight dogs.

Rice

Rice contains easily digestible carbohydrate, which makes it a great food for dogs, especially when they are having an upset stomach. There are different types of rice available in the market. Brown rice is considered healthier since it’s high in protein and low in fat content when compared to white rice.

Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a good source of soluble fiber.  For dogs that are allergic to wheat, oatmeal can be a great alternative. It’s also beneficial for older dogs that have irregular bowel movements.

Watermelon

A great treat for summers, this juicy and delicious fruit is as good for our dogs as it is for us. Make sure you remove the seeds before feeding it to your pooch. Ingestion of seeds in large numbers can be dangerous for dogs, especially the smaller ones.

Image Source: Jokeroo.com

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Tips to keep your Dog’s coat healthy

5 Apr

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Is your doggie’s skin dull and lifeless? Does your pooch have more bad hair days than you? To get that enviable shiny coat your dog doesn’t need expensive spa treatments. A healthy diet and regular grooming can go a long way in adding a shine to your dog’s coat and staving off common skin problems.

Pampering your pooch in a spa is great, but make sure you get the basics right to maintain the long-term health of his coat. Here are few tips to help you get started:

Diet rich in Protein and Omega oils

Dry coat and excessively shedding fur are often an indication of unhealthy diet lacking in vital nutrients. Feed your dog high-quality pet food to provide him with the essential nutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals.  A diet rich in protein and omega oils(omega-6 and omega-3) can help add luster to your dog’s coat and ward off  skin problems such as itching, shedding and allergies. Different breeds of dogs have different nutritional needs. So, do some research to gather info on your dog’s diet requirements and consult your vet if you feel the need to fortify it further with supplements.

Regular Exercise

We all know about the role of exercise in keeping our skin and hair healthy. Dogs’ skin and hair are no different. Exercise stimulates the supply of nutrients to their coat, giving it a healthy sheen. So, walking or playing with your dog has double benefits – it’ll keep both you and your pooch looking great.

Bathing and Shampooing

Bathe your dog regularly with a mild shampoo and treat the coat with a conditioner to moisturize it and make it smoother. For dogs with a sensitive skin it’s often recommended to use shampoos comprising of oatmeal and other natural cleansers. Bathing is necessary to keep your dog’s skin clean, but do not overdo it. Excessive washing is likely to deplete the skin of healthy oils and cause more scratching and irritation due to dryness. The frequency of bathing depends on your dog’s skin, the length of coat etc. For dogs with normal skin, bathing once a month is considered enough, however, dogs with skin allergies and infections may need more frequent washing. Do consult your groomer or vet if you are unsure about your dog’s bathing needs.

To avoid over-shampooing and to keep your dog’s coat fresh and odour-free between baths you can use waterless spray shampoodog deodorizing spray or pet wipes. Take at look at dog shampoos, conditioners and sprays here.

Brushing

Regular brushing stimulates the hair follicles, and promotes the production of natural skin oils that make your dog’s coat shiny. Brush your dog’s fur at least once every day, to remove the tangles and to enhance the secretion and distribution of natural oil across the skin.  Shop for brushes and other grooming accessories here.

Regular visits to the vet

Keep your dog vaccinated and go for regular veterinary checkups. This would help detect skin problems such as fleas, ticks, worms and skin allergies early and take the necessary treatment to cure the problem.

Image Courtesy: Ourworldofdogs.com

 

Tips to take care of Puppies

22 Mar

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Raising a puppy can be a highly rewarding experience. However, those initial months of puppyhood are also the most challenging ones – for you and your pup. To ensure that your puppy grows up to be a healthy and happy dog, it’s important to provide him/her with the right food, training and environment in the early years.

Take a look at some of these tips for taking care of a new puppy:

Provide your puppy with good food

Puppies need to be fed at least 4 times a day in the initial six months. The diet must be rich in proteins, minerals, vitamins, and fats essential for growth. You can opt for any high quality commercial puppy food available in the market. To maintain some variety you could also provide your puppy with natural food like cooked meat (make sure your remove the bones); and finely chopped and steamed veggies including pumpkin, carrot, cabbage and spinach. It’s always better to consult your vet, before you prepare a diet plan for your puppy.

Regular Exercise is a must

Puppies being highly active in their initial years get a good dose of exercise by playing and running around the house. Once your puppy is vaccinated, you can also start taking him/her for daily walks. When outside, make sure you keep the pup on a leash and secure the dog with a name tag.  You can find dog tags, collars and leashes here, if you are planning to get some for your new puppy.

Playtime is essential

Unlike humans, ‘Play’ is part of a dog’s entire life. But, puppyhood is the best time for your pooch to snuggle up with toys and engage in fun games with you. Toys and games also have numerous health benefits for dogs. Read this post if you need some guidance on selecting the right toy for your puppy. You can also check out Woofilicious’s collection of dog toys if you are looking to buy toys for your pup.

Keep your puppy well groomed

The earlier you start grooming your puppy, the better. Establishing a regular grooming routine will not only help you keep a check on fleas, ticks and other skin ailments that dogs are susceptible to, but also provide you with an opportunity to bond with your pet. Want to buy dog grooming products and accessories? You can shop for them here.

Vaccination and Health Checkups

Vaccination is necessary to protect your puppy from several dangerous diseases.  Puppies are generally vaccinated against Canine Parvovirus, Canine Distemper, Canine Hepatitis and Canine Parainfluenza Virus, when they are 6-8 weeks old. A follow-up dose of vaccination may be given around 4 weeks later, and annual booster vaccinations will be required to keep your dog protected. Make sure your take your puppy to the vet, immediately after you bring him/her home, to get an overall health check-up done. You may be required to visit the vet after few weeks to get the pup vaccinated and after few months( around 6-8 months) to get the puppy spayed/neutered. Even after your pup reaches adulthood, an annual visit to the vet is a must, to keep your dog’s health in check.

Start training your pup from day one

You must start training your dog as soon as you bring him/her home. Good training in the growing up years solves common behaviour issues in the later stages of your dog’s life. It also helps you develop a healthy relationship with your dog.  It’s important to be patient and encouraging while training your pet. Reward your pup with a treat when he/she follows your commands and does things in the right way, and never punish the pup for making mistakes. It’s all part of the learning process.

 Socializing your puppy

It’s important to socialize your dog with other dogs and people during the growing up years. A well socialized puppy is less fearful and more confident when it comes to dealing with new situations and environments. During the early weeks and months, introduce your puppy to new people and places. Once you have vaccinated your pooch, you can take him/her to dog parks or other places, where he/she can socialize with other dogs.

Image Courtesy: Fanpop.com

 

 

Tips to keep your Dog healthy and safe during Summer

14 Mar

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With the warm and sunny days of summer finally here, everyone around us seems to be gearing up for some outdoor fun  – family get-togethers, adventure trips with friends, picnic with kids, and some alone time sunbathing on the beach. It’s not just we who are happier, even our four-legged friends seem to be more energetic during the warmer months. However, the season, along with all its positive attributes, is also accompanied by few potential dangers – sunstroke, dehydration, skin problems et al. Our pets are less likely to warn us about the impending dangers, so it’s really important that we take precautionary measures to ensure that they stay healthy and safe during summers.

To help your doggie  beat the heat and have more fun this summer, make sure your keep these points in mind:

Avoid vigorous exercise

Though it’s important to take your pet out for walks during summer to keep him/her physically fit, exercising too much is not a great idea, as it can lead to overheating. Stick to a moderate exercise regime, and try doing it during the cooler parts of the day ie. early morning and late evening hours.

Protect his/her paws with boots

Dogs absorb and release heat through their paws. During summer, the cemented roads and surfaces can get unbearably hot, making it difficult for your pooch to walk around comfortably. If you are taking your dog out for a walk in the afternoon, make sure his/her feet are protected with boots. Don’t have boots  for your doggie yet? You can shop for them here.

Don’t leave your dog in the hot sun and in the parked car

Avoid leaving your dog out in the hot sun for long hours. Allow him/her to rest indoors or in a shady spot. And never leave your dog in a parked car. The car tends to absorb heat, even if it is parked in the shade, and can cause your dog to become suffocated and dehydrated.

Keep your dog well hydrated

Provide your dog plenty of fresh, cool water to keep his/her body well hydrated. Keep a bowl of water around the house in an easily accessible place, so your pooch can drink it whenever he/she is thirsty. Carry bottles of water with you whenever you are taking your dog outdoors.

Keep your pooch well-groomed

Did you know that the coat of  the dog acts like an insulator, protecting him/her from cold in the winter and from heat in the summer? Keep your pooch well groomed, but do not give your dog a close shave as to remove this layer of protection.

Keep your pooch vaccinated

Fleas, ticks and mosquitoes that carry heartworm disease are more prevalent in summers.  Consult your vet and make sure your dog is vaccinated against these common parasites.

Watch out for the signs of Heatstroke

 Prevention is better than cure, and if you are keeping the aforementioned points in mind then your pooch is less likely to suffer from a heatstroke. However, it’s always good to keep an eye on your dog and watch out for these signs of  heatstroke:

  • Panting
  • High fever
  • Warm, dry skin
  • Bright red tongue and pale gums
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Refusal to obey commands

If you notice any of these symptoms, then try to cool down your dog, by keeping  him/her to an air-conditioned room,  by pouring cool water over the dog’s head and body, and by giving your pooch some cool water to drink. Heatstroke is an emergency and requires immediate treatment. Do contact an emergency vet clinic immediately.

Image Courtesy: Favim.com

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