Have you ever tried to do yoga in your living room and everytime you downward dog you get dog kisses? This is Doga.
Currently trending among pet parents, this is not a new idea. Doga: Yoga for You and Your Dog by Mahny Djahanguiri was published in 2015 and she started to develop and teach doga classes 3 years earlier, in 2012.
Dogs have always been natural yogis and involving your dog in yoga sessions is an entertaining and fun way to bond with your pet. More about the feeling of relaxation rather than the poses. Doga provides a mindful connection with your dog. As an activity it de-stresses your dog and creates a wonderful sharing and nurturing experience.
Being in close contact with your dog on a regular basis provides an opportunity for a weekly body check as well as gets them used to their paws and toes being touched. Very beneficial when it comes time to go to the vet or the groomer!
There are quite a few classes popping up in and around Boston and while it may not be for all dogs it might be fun to try at least once even if it is just in the privacy of your own home.
Understanding what potential harmful poisons exist in your home and yard is the first step to keeping your pet safe. Some of them are very obvious but others might be new to you.
Here’s the Top Ten Pet Poison List for dogs and cats from the Pet Poison Helpline. Based on the Pet Poison Helpline call volume and extensive database, here are the top 10 most common toxins that Pet Poison Helpline gets called about. Now keep in mind that some of these listed are very toxic, while some are minimally toxic (like ant baits and silica packs). When in doubt, call your vet or Pet Poison Helpline to make sure there won’t be a problem. Take special care to keep these toxins out of your pet’s reach and pet-proof your house!
- Mouse and Rat Poisons (rodenticides)
- Vitamins and Minerals (e.g., Vitamin D3, iron, etc.)
- NSAIDs (e.g., ibuprofen, naproxen, etc.)
- Cardiac Medications (e.g., calcium channel blockers, beta-blockers, etc.)
- Cold and Allergy Medications (e.g., pseudoephedrine, phenylephrine, etc.)
- Antidepressants (e.g., selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)
- Xylitol (common in peanut butter, toothpaste and chewing gum – read your labels to ensure your pet is safe!)
- Acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol)
- Caffeine Pills
- Topical spot-on insecticides
- Household Cleaners
- Insoluble Oxalate Plants (e.g., Dieffenbachia, Philodendron, etc.)
- Human and Veterinary NSAIDs
- Cold and Flu Medication (e.g., Tylenol)
- Glow Sticks
- ADD/ADHD Medications/Amphetamines
- Mouse and Rat Poison
If you suspect your pet has ingested any of these items or any other questionable substance, call Pet Poison Helpline or your veterinarian for assistance. Accurate and timely identification of the suspected substance is very important. Having the container, package, or label in hand will save valuable time and may save the life of your pet.
For more information you can check out the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center for even more helpful tips to keep your pets safe.
NATIONAL K9 VETERANS DAY
A lot of things changed after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941. Oil, leather and rubber were rationed. Men were drafted. Women rolled up their sleeves and built war supplies.
And dogs were called to duty. During the first world war, the United States took notice of the European use of canines as sentries, message carriers and several other functions.
Dogs for Defense was a program initiated by a private citizen by the name of Mrs. Alene Erlanger. Along with the American Kennel Club and a handful of breeders, the group aimed to train the dogs for military use.
By November of 1942, the first Dogs for Defense were prepared for duty in North Africa. While at first they were gun shy, they proved to be well trained.
As the war progressed, Dogs for Defense was unable to keep up with the demand and the Remount Branch, Service Installations Divisions took over training of the dogs.
Over the years the military, police and rescue have developed a variety of training methods for K9 units. Their training is tailored to meet the demands of the job and each animal and handler carries out his or her duties to the fullest.
National K9 Veterans Day is celebrated on March 13th on the official birthday of the US Army K9 Corps, which was formed in 1942. Joseph White, a retired military working dog trainer, originated the idea for the day.
It’s National Dog Biscuit Day, so how can we not celebrate this holiday where every dog should be allowed to call in sick from work, sleep in, have big pawties with all their dog friends, and eat as many dog biscuits as their tummies can handle (all without having to do any tricks, roll-overs, beg, or high fives)?
Short History of Dog Biscuits
Prior to the late 1800s, dogs would chew on old grain biscuits – and they were usually moldy, stale, or rock hard. Thanks to James Spratt, dog biscuits changed for good: he spotted stray dogs devouring hardtack, a centuries-old stale cracker kept on ships, and came up with the idea for “dog cakes.” The cakes were a mix of meat, grains, and vegetables and called “Meat Fibrine Dog Cakes.” Shortly thereafter, in 1908, the F.H. Bennett Biscuit Co of New York started to manufacture hard bone-shaped dog biscuits made of milk and meat products.
Nowadays, dog treats and biscuits clean teeth, provide nutritional supplements, and hide medicine or pills. They’re also still the number one way to reward your pup.
And nothing says ‘I love you’ like homemade baked goods. You could make your own but we recommend you let us do the baking for you so you can spend your time celebrating with your pup!
At about 3 years of age Jesse started to develop some serious plaque on her molars and as a “good dog mom” I would try to brush her teeth as much as she would allow me to. This was, and still is, NOT an easy task. Even with the oh so appetizing chicken flavored toothpaste the brushing lasts no more than 30 seconds a side. So I wasn’t that surprised when our veterinarian recommended she have a routine dental cleaning to have the plaque and tartar removed.
They started off with x-rays of her mouth and it did not look good. Her bad breath and tartar were a more than just that - she had periodontal disease. This included some serious bone loss and the routine dental cleaning turned out to be a major tooth extraction process!!! I thought my goodness, I am an awful mother, how could I have not known - her teeth didn’t seem that bad and I had tried to brush them!
Our wonderful vet consoled me - this was nothing that I could have prevented. As a rescue we had never been sure of her breed but - Jesse was probably a Whippet mix and this was hereditary. A close cousin of the Greyhound - their family tree has a high rate of early-onset periodontal disease. They are also prone to several genetic conditions of the tooth enamel that can leave them at risk for painful infections, root exposure and tooth loss. Unfortunately, periodontal disease does irreversible damage. However, the treatment of current conditions combined with future preventative care can keep disease from progressing further.
If you haven’t seen or heard by now - February is National Pet Dental Health Month. Dental health is a very important part of your pet’s overall health. It can cause or be caused by other health issues. Yellow teeth, red gums, drooling and bad breath are not just cosmetic - these can be signs of serious disease which can affect your pet’s heart, liver or kidney function.
You can do your best to prevent oral disease by developing a healthy eating plan - feeding quality pet food and treats. Have your pet’s mouth checked at least once a year by your veterinarian. In between check ups regularly brushing your pet’s teeth is the single most effective thing to reduce the growth of bacteria.
A few tips on brushing your pet’s teeth
- Use a specially designed dog toothbrush or a recommended alternative.
- Never use human toothpaste. Instead, use pet-safe toothpaste with a flavor favorable to your dog’s taste buds.
- Give your dog a small sample of the toothpaste to introduce the taste.
- Lift the lip to expose the outside surfaces of your dog’s gums and teeth.
- Brush with gentle motions to clean the teeth and gums, as you would your own.
- Clean the outside (cheek-facing) surfaces, as most pets will not allow you to brush the inside surface of the teeth.
- Be sure to reach the back upper molars and canines, as these teeth tend to quickly build up tartar.
- Reward your dog with play, petting or a favorite activity to positively reinforce the brushing process.
Persistent bad breath can indicate larger medical problems in the mouth, respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, or internal organs. Diabetes, specifically diabetic ketoacidosis, can also make a dog’s breath smell unusual, giving it a sweet, almost fruity smell. Uncontrolled diabetes can suppress the immune system, allowing bacteria in the mouth to grow unchecked.
Like Jesse, there are a few other breeds which are particularly susceptible to oral disease. Pugs, Yorkshire Terriers, Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, Shelties, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Maltese are all among the top prone breeds.
The good news is - keeping on top of your pet’s dental health has lasting positive effects. Studies suggest that maintaining oral health can add up to 5 years to your pet’s life. That means plenty of extra kisses!
We all know that dogs are a girls best friend..,get the perfect portrait of your best friend and support Quincy Animal Shelter at the same time! Book online at www.sallybowenphotography.com
AAAHHHHHHH, you cannot beat this weather in February!!! 60 degrees - the girls and I will take it! It has been so great getting out of the house, playing ball, walking, running and exploring.
Speaking of exploring... we have added a great new retailer - WAGS Charlestown which we are so happy to be partnering with. They are a wonderful group of groomers and walkers that absolutely love what they do.
We also recently met Tiffany from K9 Kompanion Training. She does unbelievable work with all obedience and behavior issues for every breed. Whether it be In Home or her Board and Train program the focus is on providing you a family member you can count on... I think Ella, Savannah and Jesse may just need a refresher course! One thing we love - is that there is an Animal Rescue Discount. Anything that promotes pet adoption is good by us! Definitely check out their website or Facebook page.
Since it is our slower season we have been working on a few new recipes so stay tuned to see what we come up with!
A new year is always so exciting! So far, 2017 has not let us down in that department. We are so happy to announce 2 NEW STORES selling Carberry Kitchen.
Diane and Freddie are some of the most knowledgeable experts you will ever find about the right way to care for your dog. From raw diets, organic supplements and natural tinctures there is no better way to help your dog live a long and healthy life than to take their advice.
A health food store with a sense of humor and laid back vibe. Their motto is "smile, it's healthy" and we can't agree more!
Thank you to both stores for supporting a local, small business. This is just the beginning of a long, healthy relationship!
Every family member deserves wholesome - treat your dog to Carberry Kitchen!