Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Off leash dog parks

Off leash dog parks Dogs of all ages need exercise. Nothing can replace a good walk with a human companion, but all dogs really want a chance to run and really stretch their legs. If they can enjoy the camaraderie of other canines at the same time, that's even better. And that's why dog parks are such a great place for your pets. Let's look at some of the good reasons to use your local dog park, as well as a few precautions you should be taking, too. Socialization Galore If you're fortunate enough to have a popular dog park in your community, this can be a great source of socialization for your dog. Dogs need to have as many interactions as possible with other dogs and with humans so they will feel comfortable in lots of different situations. A well-socialized dog is less likely to be anxious, nervous, or aggressive. Because a dog park is full of people and pets, socialization is almost guaranteed. Fun for Dogs of All Types Dogs love to walk and explore their environment, but they may not always like having to be leashed in the process. Even if you have a big fenced in yard where your dog can run safely unleashed, if he or she doesn't have a buddy to chase around the fun may be limited. At the dog park, dogs can do their own thing off-leash. Older dogs might just want to find a shady spot under a tree. Active dogs may want to play as a pack. Some dogs may want to play fetch with their human companions. If you've never seen the pure look of happiness on the face of a dog running off-leash, you need to head to the nearest dog park and see it for yourself. Healthy Exercise Another benefit is the exercise for your dog. Dogs who don't get enough exercise are prone to obesity, arthritis, and other serious health problems. Plus, they are more difficult to live with because all of the pent up energy is going to emerge as destructive, unwanted behavior in your home. While walking your dog is good exercise for both of you, the dog park is going to give your dog a chance to really get a workout and drain that energy. Regular visits to the dog park will make a huge difference in even the feistiest dog. A Few Precautions Dog parks clearly have a lot of benefits, but you do need to take some precautions for your pet's protection and your own. 1. Separate Small and Large Dogs - Most dog parks have separate areas so small dogs can enjoy themselves safely. Large dogs, even the friendly ones, can accidentally injure a small dog. Obey the rules on separation by size, and if your particular park does not offer that option, start campaigning in order to have the city establish it. 2. Look Around - Always keep an eye out for dog fights, which will undoubtedly happen once in a while. If you know the park well, be aware of new dogs coming into the park and their general demeanor. 3. Keep Your Dog Under Vocal Control - Even though the dog park is a place where humans can mingle, too, you don't want to become so distracted in your conversation that you can't pay attention to what your dog is doing. Most dog parks do have rules requiring you to have vocal control over your dog at all times. 4. Keep Your Eyes Open - The dog park will give you a chance to socialize with other dog owners, however, always keep your dog in sight. Be aware of other dogs getting aggressive, or even of what he get's into his mouth. One of the ways to keep the parks pleasant, is for the owners to always pick up after their dogs. Don't be so distracted that you don't see when your dog does its business. 5. Bring Water - Although some dog parks do have the ability to provide water for the dogs through a fountain, most do not. Always bring along water for your dogs because the can easily get overheated when they're playing in the warm sunshine. In the summer, you might find the best times to play are in the morning and in the evening before sunset. 6. Protect Yourself - Getting to know your fellow dog lovers is a great idea but you have to be careful. Just because someone owns a dog that doesn't mean they are a wonderful person. Be careful about how much personal information you reveal about yourself. Do not leave your purse or wallet visible in the car while you are inside the park. Would be thief knows you'll be distracted and will take advantage of the fact. Most importantly, use this play time to bond with your dog. Don't just get there and ignore him or her the rest of the time. Nothing will make your dog happier, than having the chance to play with you. If you want to read more stories and find very useful information about your cats and dogs, please visit me at Article Source: Article Source:

Are Dog Parks a Good Idea?

Author: Joseph Sabol
Now that the weather is getting nice, everyone wants to get outside to play. Its great for both dogs and dog owners to take advantage of outdoor play, for fun and for exercise. You may be fortunate enough to have a nice fenced in yard for your dogs. If you live in a big city, or live in an apartment, you may think the only way to exercise your pooch is by taking walks. That is no longer your only option. In recent years, dog parks have been popping up all over the country. Just as the name suggests, these are fenced -in areas where dogs can be taken off leash and allowed to run around and play, either with their owner or with other dogs. There are private and public dog parks and some may charge a fee to help pay for maintenance. All dog parks should have a posted list of rules. Important rules include, never leaving your dog unattended, always have voice control over your dog, and do not bring your dog's favorite toy from home. He will probably not want to share. Also, never bring a female in heat or close to her heat cycle, to a dog park. I am certain I don't even have to explain this rule. Many provide bags for cleaning up after your dog. This is obviously very important , not just to keep the park clean, but to prevent spreading illness. Some parks have a separate area fenced off for small dogs. If you have a small dog, it will be worth it to find one of these parks. You can imagine the problems that could result from a little dog with a big dog attitude! While dog parks can be a lot of fun for owners and dogs, there can also be problems. Not all dogs are suited for a dog park, and not all owners are aware that their dog isn't suited for a dog park. Your pup should be well socialized to other dogs from a very early age. Even well behaved dogs can get excited and play too aggressively. Something that is important for dog owners to remember is, if you bring 3 or more dogs together, they will naturally become a pack and only one dog can be the boss. If your pooch doesn't know his place in your family's pack, he will not know how to handle being with several other dogs. Even if dogs are used to all the other dogs that come to a park regularly, they may not accept a new dog into their territory. You need to be very vigilant to prevent problems and be prepared to protect your dog from an aggressive dog or dogs. Not every owner has the experience or even the common sense to know what to do if a problem arises. If your pet is the one who is getting too rough or aggressive, immediately leash him and take him out of the park. Some dog owners carry a can of pepper spray in case a fight does break out. Dog parks can be a great place for you and your dog to makes friends. The important thing is to be aware of potential problems and know how to handle any situation that might come up. Whatever you do, get outside and play with your dogs. Article Source:

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Joseph M. Sabol is a world class Doberman breeder. Please go to or to for further information.

What is the best type of dog clothing

What is the best type of dog clothing? Dog clothing is more popular than ever before. Dressing your pup in clothes is a cute and fun way to show off his personality but outfits serve a practical purpose, too. They help to protect your dog from the elements by keeping him warmer, dryer and by providing protection from the sun. Whatever your reason for buying your pet clothes, you can get more for your money when you know how to shop smart. Apply some of the same rules you use when shopping for yourself or for your kids when shopping for doggie clothes. This will help you make smart decisions so you'll actually put the items that you buy on your dog instead of in a drawer. Here are a few dog clothing shopping tips that will help you shop smart: · If you don't think she will be comfortable or happy wearing that ruffled dress, then don't buy it just because you think it's its adorable. · Look for outfits that suit his personality. If he sits beside you during sports, a jersey with your team's logo on it would be perfect. · Buy clothing based on where you live. You don't need a thick wool sweater if you live in Texas where the winters are mild. If you live in an area where it rains a lot, you can stock up on raincoats and boots but if not, does she really need three sets of each. · Clothing with buttons and zippers are not good for everyday use. If it's for a special occasion and for a short period during which time you'll be watching him, they're fine. Otherwise, the dog clothes held together by Velcro is a much better buy because they are safer for your pet. · Be sure and buy the right size clothing. Your dog needs clothes that will fit and just like most people, she can lose or gain weight frequently. Therefore, make sure you measure your dog occasionally so you can check the sizes and buy clothing that fit perfectly. · Consider the quality of the clothing before you buy. It's better to pay a little extra for a quality outfit than it is to save a few bucks on poor quality. It'll last much longer and be safer for your pet because it won't rip and tear as easily. · Check out sale items. When you buy on sale, you can often find many quality items for amazing prices. Remember, just because something is on sale doesn't mean that it's a poor quality item. There are many reasons why stores put products on sale including the end of a season. It's a great opportunity for you to buy wonderful quality outfits for your dog at very affordable prices. If your dog doesn't like wearing clothes, don't worry. You can still make your pet stand out without making him or her uncomfortable by using accessories. For example, you can buy bandanas, hair bows, bells or little bowties designed just for dogs of all sizes. You can also accessorize and show off your pet's personality through designer collars, harnesses and leashes. Doggie Clothesline has an extensive assortment of dog clothes for any size dog. . Article Source: Article Source:

What to know about White German Shepherd Puppy

What to know about White German Shepherd Puppy

White German Shepherd Puppy - Discover Why This Breed Suits You!

Author: James Kelly

So you're considering about buying or adopting a White German Shepherd puppy? Well, before you pack your bags and start shopping for the right puppy to take home, you might as well first put research into knowing more about your new family member. After all, what kind of owner would you be if you don't even know a thing about your prospective pet!

For starters, a White German Shepherd puppy is a breed and just like other dogs, taking care of this particular breed has its ups and downs too! In fact, there are several that I've just decided to break them down and make things easier for you. Here it goes:

You would want this breed if...
o You like German Shepherds but would one with a softer personality
o You want a pet that is natural looking and is athletic
o You want a guardian dog but not one that is too hostile
o You want an intelligent dog, easy to train and with a high level of competition

You would not want to this breed if...
o You don't enjoy walks
o You're looking for a couch dog
o You don't enjoy training your dog or providing it with mental stimulation
o You hate destructive behaviour, even to the smallest degree
o You don't want hyperactive dogs
o You don't want to get hair all over the place
o You have health problems
o You don't want to deal with dogs that have socialization problems

Over-all, a White German Shepherd puppy is just like the "brown-coated" one, with minimum changes in behaviour patterns and physical characteristics. And just like any other German Shepherd dogs, the lack of early exposure to socializing with humans and other animals will render your pet hostile towards everybody.

You should remember that while dogs that belong in one breed share common attributes, dogs are like humans too in terms of personality! No one really knows what personality a dog would have until it grows up but you can always mold your dog's personality through proper training.

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There are more to know about the white german shepherd. To view a wealth of information about the white german shepherd puppy, visit my website.

Exercise And Training Tips You Have To Know About Your White German Shepherd Puppies!

Author: James Kelly

White German shepherd puppies have been very helpful to mankind for the last few years as they are the primary breed for protection purposes. From patrolling boarders, to keeping strangers away from an area, and to guarding those within the area, these are the basic purposes of white German shepherd puppies when they have grown older. Therefore, the need to train them is crucial to their well-being. In fact, with proper training, their functions can be fully maximized according to their strength, stamina, skills and abilities.

When training white German shepherd puppies, start at an early age. They can be immersed into trainings at the age of three months. However, this should be done in subtle ways. At the early age, they should only be exposed to simple obstacle courses or activities because their bones are still under development. Minimize jumping stunts as these would lead to bone fractures and sprains. In the next 3-5 months, you can advance to the next level for your training. Your dog has developed their mind and bodies for more complex tasks. You can take your dog for a walk every morning; do some fetching exercises and other activities of the same category.

When your dog reaches the age, a year or a two, you can prepare and train your dog for more and more complicated tasks necessary for a wider field like for military purposes. Many bomb sniffing dogs or detectors and guide for the blind dogs are trained under special activities. The training for these special types of tasks requires a lot of time and effort in order for the dogs to be utilized effectively. White German shepherd puppies belong to the type of dogs who learn very quickly. Dogs with proper training and constant attention to your dog, will surely prepare them for activities and for very important functional purposes.

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There are more to know about white shepherd puppies. To view a wealth of information about white shepherd puppies, visit my website.

Preventing small dog syndrome

Preventing small dog syndrome

How you can prevent small dog syndrome?

Author: Kristen Anderson

Star Yorkie Kennel is specializing in breeding Teacup Yorkshire terrier, Maltese & Pomeranian puppies.From our family to yours, all puppies are healthy happy and playful. There is no better place to get your new baby from - Guaranteed!

Star Yorkie Kennel CA has admitted that it is extremely easy to spoil a small dog, even to the point of the dog becoming a major nuisance. They have to be put through the same rigors of obedience training as any big dog would. They have to be taught what behaviors are acceptable and which ones are not. Just like with our children, it is easy to overlook bad behavior, and some parent's even reward it. Here are a few tips that you can implement right away.

1. Never allow anyone including yourself to pick the dog up without first signaling the dog that this is about to happen. When a dog is picked up unawares it will react aggressively and when the person puts the dog down it learns that this behavior can be used to stop the humans.
2. Do not allow the dog to walk allover you, the beds, the furniture or your guest. This will elevate the dog to a status that is in appropriate. Also do not give in to its demands for attention, in other words remind it that it is a dog and that you are in charge, not it.

3. Never let your dog snap at people or other dogs without a form of discipline to follow. Do not stroke the dog reassuringly because they will perceive this as praise and this will only reinforce the behavior. Give a stern and quick No! And then put the animal down.

4. Do not hand feed the animal. That is not to say that you cannot give them treats but it will not hurt them to eat their main meals from a doggy dish. Please do not put them in a high chair with a bib or let them otherwise eat in places where humans have their meals.

For the last 6 years the Star Yorkie Kennel has been helping families to acquire the perfect puppy addition to their life.Specializing in teacup / toy size breeds is very challenging because of the delicacy of the puppies and the amount of effort required to grow such a small animal and maintain it in perfect health.With over 500 adoptions we feel we are doing a great job and commit to keep on the good work!

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Star Yorkie Kennel CA

Small Dog Syndrome

Author: Matt Covey

Small Dog Syndrome

The infamous "Small Dog Syndrome" comes up often in my line of work. I hear it from veterinarians, rescue groups, and countless clients. Everyone is pretty much in agreement that small dogs have a "Napoleon" complex. People often ask me if it is possible to prevent a small dog from yapping, jumping, peeing in the house, snapping at people etc. My answer is a resounding yes. "Small dog syndrome" doesn't originate in dog genetics, it comes from the owners, not the dog. How is this possible you might ask? I answer this with a series of hypothetical situations.

What would you do if your German Shepherd growled when your neighbor comes over? You would correct him, put him away, call a trainer, or at least become very worried. This is a dominant guarding behavior that needs to be addressed and you would do something. What would you do if your cute little Teacup Yorkie growled at the same neighbor? You would probably ignore him, pick him up, or start to make excuses for him. He's just scared, he thinks he's a big dog, don't worry about him he's all bark no bite. Sound familiar? Ignoring him teaches that the behavior is acceptable, picking him up also shows that you approve and puts him in a more dominant position, and making excuses just convinces you that nothing can be done.

Jumping is a common behavior in dogs and it is one way that they dominate humans. Not every time a dog jumps is dominance but generally the higher a dog is, especially on a humans body, the more dominant they feel. What would you do if your Rottweiler consistently jumps on you? Knee him away? Correct with your hand? Call a trainer? The point is that you would do something. What would you do if your Maltese consistently jumps on you? Pet him each time? Tell everyone "this is how he says hello"? Ignore him? Any of those choices runs the risk that the dog is becoming more dominant with every passing day.

Another question that I pose is "How important would you rate leash training your dog?" Owners of large dogs (German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Pitbulls, Mastiffs, etc.) generally say that leash training is very important to them. Owners of small breeds (Yorkies, Chihuahuas, Miniature Pinchers, etc.) generally don't find proper leash training to be nearly as important for two main reasons. The reasons are typically that it doesn't matter if they pull because they're so small or they don't get walked much because they don't need much exercise. This is a huge issue in pet dogs since most time in new areas tends to be on leash. A proper walk with a dog is a time to establish dominance and control. When a pack of dogs travel, the leader is in front. Teaching a dog to "heel" is the process of teaching him to follow you. If your dog is following you mentally and physically on a walk, he is much less likely to bark or lunge at new people or animals. If your dog is leading you in an excited dominant state, he is much more likely to bark and lunge at new things. After a one hour walk a dog that walked in a submissive state will come home feeling submissive. A dog who spends an hour pulling his owner while feeling dominant and excited will probably return home still feeling dominant. Twenty minutes later when the neighbor dog walks by your front window which of these dogs do you thinking will be barking his head off?

When we allow our dog to live in a very dominant state day after day it is only a matter of time before a new issue crops up. A calm, well socialized, submissive dog will go to the vet and probably be examined without issue. If something scares him or hurts him slightly he will usually ignore it, try to leave the situation, or softly growl to let you know he isn't comfortable with what is happening. A very dominant dog that has been allowed to pull on leash, bark and lunge at people and dogs, and jump on everybody is much more likely to suddenly lash out. He is being bothered and is willing to bite to stop whatever it is he doesn't like.

All of this is meant to show you that small dogs have nothing wrong with them. Small dogs don't know that they're small. They have the same instincts as large dogs. We need to learn as humans that WE are both the cause and the solution to "Small Dog Syndrome." When living with a small dog the best question you can ask yourself on a daily basis is "Would I let my Rottweiler do this?" If the answer is no, then you need to do something.

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Matt Covey is the owner and lead trainer of Suburban K-9. He has helped rehabilitate and train thousands of dogs many of which would have been euthanized. He is frequently called in by veterinarians, humane societies, and even other trainers for help with their more difficult cases. Please check out our website for more articles and training videos. We are located near Chicago in Bartlett, Il.

You can also see us on YouTube

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Long haired dog breeds

Long haired dog breeds

Free Grooming Tips For Long Haired Dogs

Author: Michael Hrynewich

Belgian Sheepdog

For most dogs with long hair fall brings the second heavy shed of the year. Dogs such as the Belgian Sheepdog with it’s jet black coat can be strikingly beautiful if maintained with the appropriate dog grooming supplies.

You will notice during dog grooming that the coat of longhaired dogs is double, with a soft, dense inner coat and a longer, slightly coarser outer coat. The coat on the Belgian for example, is medium long with noticeable fringes on the legs and tail as well as longer and thicker hair around the neck in the ruff and chest area.

While dog grooming a Belgian take note of any white on the toes of the back feet, which can extend between the pads, any white on the front feet is a serious fault in the show ring. The muzzle can have a slight amount of white or gray coloration. In some areas, the coat may fade to a slightly reddish tinge and this is not a fault if it is due to the environment and not to the actual coloration of the dog.

The Belgian Sheepdog as well as all longhaired breeds of dogs "blows" their coat in the spring and fall. This means that the winter and summer coat is lost in a very heavy shed twice a year. Longhaired dogs actually have two coats; the outer coat is thicker, coarser and designed to provide protection and waterproofing. The inner coat is softer, shorter and denser, adding insulation for the dog.

When shedding the inner, softer coat often becomes matted or tangled with the longer, outer coat resulting in thick, knots of hair that may need clipping to be removed. Daily dog grooming with a quality dematting tool will prevent matts and tangles. Also during the shedding season, a bath with FURminator dog shampoo will loosen the hair and make dog grooming much easier. Remember to use only dog specific dog grooming supplies, as human products will cause skin irritations and other issues.

Bathing your longhaired dog in the heavy shed times of the year in your own bathtub will leave a mess. If you choose to do the bathing yourself, it is best done outside in a dog bath tub. This way all of the hair can be collected and discarded without clogging your drains. Using FURminator dog grooming supplies will keep your house hair free for about four to six weeks. To accomplish this goal you will need to really work up a lather when bathing and then immediately brush your dog when the bath is over.

Always groom the outer coat first using a stiff bristle dog brush or dog combs. After the outer areas, including the fringe on the legs and the longer hair on the ruff is completely knot free, use a dog-grooming rake or pin brush to brush the inner coat. Simply and gently, push the longer outer coat up and groom the inner coat downwards in the direction of hair growth. Using these dog grooming supplies daily, especially during the shedding season will prevent most knots and mats from forming.

Using dog grooming scissors, clip the hair around the feet and between the pads to prevent balls from forming between the toes. These balls of hair and debris can cause severe lameness and infections between the toes. Clipping the long hairs on the ears and plucking or pulling any long hairs, in the outer ear area will help prevent infections in the ear itself.

Lastly, your dog grooming sessions should include a brushing their teeth. This component is something some dog owners forget. Dog are just as susceptible to the same tooth and gum diseases as us humans. Grooming your dog should be fun for all. By using the appropriate dog grooming supplies, you will enjoy a cleaner house and beautiful looking dog with fresh breath ready for those sloppy kisses.

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Michael, a dog owner for over 25 years, has amassed several dog obedience-training techniques as well as an extensive knowledge of dog health problems. Follow this link to read detailed information about your dog from temperament to health and to shop for dog grooming supplies visit the Pet Supply Store at Remarkable Dogs Where we are dedicated to providing only the very best for your dog.

Dog Care Products For The Long Haired Dog

Author: Gloria Gangi

Regardless of their coat any long haired dog requires special care. Regular brushing is an essential task but there are also other products on the market which focus on long haired dogs, these products have been designed and created especially for dogs with long hair.

Shampoo and Conditioner

There are dog care products such as shampoos and conditioners that have been especially designed to control matting and tangles in long haired dogs. Both the shampoo and conditioner in most cases need to be used. The shampoo removes the grime and dirt from the hair as it acts as a cleanser while the conditioner helps to prevent tangles by smoothing the hair.

Brushes, Combs and Rakes

Some other useful items are for long haired dogs are brushes, combs and rakes they are useful in helping detangling and dematting the coat and they help prevent future tangles in the dogs hair.

Brushing is a necessary part of grooming particularly for long haired breeds. Brushing removes dust, dead skin, loose hairs, grass seeds and tangles. It also assists to shorten the coat moult, which occurs each autumn and spring.

You can find specialized brushed and combs designed to help in sorting out the dogs matted hair and tangles. The brushed have short, sharp bristles that can cover a large matted area. These products are normally used in a dog grooming saloon or by pet owners who enjoy going through the grooming process.

Hair Dryers

You may not think that a dog hair dries is a handy product to have but when regular grooming your dog its actually an essential item to have. Hair driers are a very handy when it comes to dog grooming. They allow the dogs coat to dry quickly avoiding the chance of the fur matting and tangling whilst it is still wet. Wet hair mats and tangles more quickly than dried hair.


To remove excess hair around your dog's eyes and ears, good grooming scissors are a necessary item. Some dogs have discharge around the eyes and the fur mats frequently in this area. Using the right dog care products for your long haired dog can ensure that your dog is more comfortable and preventing problems occurring in these areas

The right dog care product will not only help you maintaining your dogs beautiful long hair coat but will also make life easier for you. Ensure that the products are the correct ones for the hair length and size of your dog.

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Cleaning dog's eyes

Cleaning dog's eyes

Introducing Good Dog Eye Care

Author: Maria Elena

Your dog's eyes also need the proper attention to keep them happy and healthy. Unlike most of their body, dogs can't usually reach their eyes to help keep them properly maintained. In order to ensure their health, and clear sight, you need to help your dog protect their eyes from infection and irritation.

Common signs of eye problems start with a thick buildup of discharge around their eye. While commonly normal to have some, if there are excessive amounts or more than usual, you definitely need to pay attention to their eyes. Reddish and irritated whites of the eyes can be the first signs of infection, and need to be addressed promptly. There are various causes for eye infection and irritation, many of which can be prevented through proper eye care and hygiene.

Keeping their eyes clean

You may have noticed the gunk and regular mucus discharge that will often build up in the corner of your dog's eyes. This is possibly the most common, but also most overlooked hygienic requirement. The buildup around their eye can actually become a breeding ground for infection, so you need to be ready to help them clean the area. While warm water and a towel can be handy for doing so, be sure that you aren't too rough, or you could hurt their eyes. Most regular buildup is easily controllable with minor attention, if you practice it daily. As dogs get older, or even play out in the dirt often, the mucus can be much more common, and isn't something to worry about unless you allow it to accumulate and possibly become infected.

Some dogs are more prone to buildup in this area. Maltese, Poodles, and Cocker breads seem to have excessive buildup, often through over-active tear-ducts, which usually mats the hair around the eye as you may notices the dark staining and buildup become apparent. Eye wash solutions for dogs can help in more severe situations, and can definitely help prevent eye infections.

A hairy situation

Dogs are commonly covered in fur, which does grow and shed (our couch is well aware of this). I'm sure we all know how irritating it can be to get hair in your eyes, and for dogs it is no different. Excess hair around their eyes can cause irritation and even scratches on their retina and surrounding eye tissues, damaging their eyes. While frequent trips to the groomers can definitely help keep their eyes clear of a hairy situation, if the need arises, you can also do it yourself. Always use a curved pair of trimming scissors, never straight, to trip the hair around their eyes. There are quite a few breeds whose fur grows very quickly, so keeping the hair out of their eyes may be required.

Soap in your eyes

Another time when your dog is actually subject to eye irritation is during their occasional bath time. Soap and dirty water can easily get into their eyes when you're rinsing them off, and can cause irritation. You can actually use a protective ointment on their eyes during bath time to help prevent dirt and soap from getting in their eyes.

Healthy diet for healthy eyes

One of the most important precautions you can take is to provide a healthy diet. Be sure that you are feeding them properly with a nutritional diet (table scraps aren't a meal). There are also multi-vitamins available for your dog, and can be especially beneficial for older dogs whose sight may already be depleting with age.

But this also brings up the topic of cataracts. This problem is common in older dogs, and is usually identified by a cloudy buildup inside of their eye. Because a dog's best sense isn't their eyes, problems with navigation aren't seen early on. This is usually because they navigate by memory and smell, but as their eyesight depletes, they can be confused by simple changes in furniture or new places. This is why a healthy diet throughout their life can help prevent cataracts and premature loss of sight by keeping their eyes healthy and strong.

Proper eye care is a daily part of your dog's hygiene, and every owner needs to be aware of how to take care of your dog's eyes. Daily maintenance, a quality diet, and a few precautions can keep your dog looking and seeing great.

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"Porch Potty - A Dog Owner's Dream Come True,"

Understanding Dog Eye Infections

Author: Barbara Yank

As a responsible pet owner, keeping the dog healthy and away from possible dog eye infections should be a primary concern. Dog eye issues can either be viral or bacterial and unlike humans, dogs can't remove any foreign object that can come in contact with their eyes. Some breeds maybe prone to certain eye problems compared to others, so it's important to consult a veterinarian if the symptoms persist to avoid any more serious health problem.

There are some general signs to look out for dog eye infections. Check if the dog is blinking too much or squinting. There might also be an infection if the dog appears to be in pain and refuses to be touched on the head. Check if the dog is also avoiding light or rubbing its eyes against the floor or furniture and see if there's any redness in the eyes or there's no obvious abnormal bulging. A clear loss of appetite and constant whining can also mean a dog eye infection or injury. If there's an opaque membrane over the eye or it appears cloudy, or if the eye looks red and inflamed, this could be conjunctivitis. The change in pressure inside the eyes can affect the firmness of the eyeball. A softer eye can mean uvetitis while a harder eye could indicate glaucoma.

Conjunctivitis, also called pink eye, is one of the most common dog eye problems and can also be caused by allergies or parasites. This infection happens when the membrane inside the eyelids and in front of the eye are inflamed. Symptoms for conjunctivitis could be one of the following: inflamed red eyes, excessive tearing and a thick yellowish or greenish mucus discharge. The usual treatment for this dog eye infection is with antibiotic eye drops, given several times a day. There might also be some allergy medication or oral antibiotics given, depending on the cause. Home remedy for conjunctivitis involves cleaning the dog's eyelids and wiping away the discharge with a cotton ball moistened with lukewarm water. There are also over the counter eye scrubs, which can be applies at least twice a day or as many times as necessary. Applying a damp and warm compress to the affected eye for five minutes can provide relief to the dog.

Another common dog eye infection is dry eye or otherwise known as keratoconjunctivitis sicca. This is what happens when natural tears aren't produced to keep the eyes moist, which can cause damage to the tear ducts. This dog eye infection should be treated immediately otherwise it can lead to more serious problems like corneal ulcers and even blindness. Treatment for dry eye or KCT includes surgery and medications to keep the eye lubricated.

Cherry eye is when there's protrusion of the dog's third eyelid out of the corner of the eye. This can be easily treated with surgery and has a high success rate. Another dog eye infection is entropion, where the eyelids roll inward and cause the eyelashes to come in contact with the eyes that can lead to irritation and pain. This disease can be inherited so it's best to check if the dog is prone to this condition. Entropion can be treated with a simple surgery but it's important to have this treated right away or it can become a worse health problem. Meanwhile, ectropion is a dog eye infection when the eyelids roll outward and exposes the inner eyelid. Breeds with drooping eyelids such as St. Bernards are prone to this infection but this can be treated with eye drops and ointments.

Glaucoma is one of the more serious dog eye infections, and can cause blindness if not taken care of immediately. This canine eye problem happens when liquid builds up inside the eye that increases pressure inside it and can ultimately lead to a more serious damage. As much as glaucoma is painful for people, this is even more painful for dogs. Surgery is usually needed as treatment for glaucoma to reduce the build-up of fluid in the eye to save the dog's vision, plus there are also medications for the pain and pressure. Early signs of glaucoma can be mistaken as conjunctivitis, but other symptoms include cloudy cornea, and the dog is visibly in pain and eyes look bloodshot.

Another common dog eye infection is the cataracts and, like with humans, is normally due to the aging process. Cataracts is usually genetic but other factors include canine diabetes, any infections or injury. The symptoms to watch out for are the opaque or cloudy membrane covering the dog's eye and check if the dog has difficulty seeing its way around. This can be treated with eye drops or surgery, depending on the cause, the severity and the dog's condition.

Corneal ulcers in dogs usually happen when the infection or injury causes lesions in the cornea and gives extreme pain to the dog. Canine corneal ulcers may be a little more difficult to detect but a few symptoms include the dog rubbing their eyes against things like carpet, tear-like discharges and squinting. It has the best chance to be treated when detected early, because if not, it can lead to loss of vision. Ointments, eye drops and antibiotics are also needed to treat this dog eye problem.

Doing some preventative eye care is still the best way to maintain the dog's health. One way would be to gently and carefully wipe the dog's eye with a clean, damp cloth at least once a day to remove any build-up of material or gunk around the eyes, without scratching or rubbing the actual eye. Another way would be to keep the hair around the eyes short to prevent it from scratching or irritating the eyes. Mixing a teaspoon of sea salt into a pint of water can be used as a quick saline solution to wipe around the dog's eyes. If a foreign object is already stuck in the eyes, take the pet to the veterinarian right away because pulling it by yourself could be more damaging than helpful. Keeping pets away from any injury like dog eye infections is an essential part of being a good pet owner, and even pets deserve all the best possible health care they need.

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