french bulldog dog having a good time with a tennis ball, in living room , looking at owner very carefully

How to Train Your Dog to Love His Crate

young girl playing with puppy dog outside

I guess you either just got a new puppy or your dog hates their crates. In the beginning, dogs find crates alien-like. That is why they take time getting used to it. Well confined places should seem bothersome, shouldn’t they?

If your dog doesn’t like their new crates, I have some fool-proof ideas to share with you that have worked wonders for my dog. I call him Pug-Man (you know, from Pac-Man and he is a pug).

Are the Crates Scary for the Dog? Let’s Debunk the Myth

Dogs love a place of their own. They like a place, where they can retreat when feel stressed or tired. When you are having a party, and you feel your dog would not feel safe among the crowd, crates are what you need. Crates provide safety in vehicles. When traveling with your dog, especially by air, crates are the most useful.

dog family traveling road trip

Find the Right One for the Job

For a puppy, get a soft dog crate with enough space for them to stretch and turn. Puppies love the soft dog crates. At this stage, any one will do. You’ll find many available in the market. Some are made of wires, some plastic.

The wire crates are cheap and have maximum air ventilation. You can get these in the early stage and buy plastic ones later. The benefit of the plastic crates is that they can be used when you travel. Plus, many dogs seemed to find the plastic ones comfier like Pug-Man does. If your dog has a habit of chewing or biting, you should get the wire-made one.

golden retriever puppy sleeping with toy on the bed

Introduce the New Home

You can’t just shove your dog into a crate and expect them to stay there quietly. So during the first few days, let your dog know that the crate is something of interest. While setting it up, call your dog, speak to them about it, take them close to it. In this way, they will know it is something they can approach safely.

little french bulldog puppy with it's tongue out in red basket in room with vintage wallpaper

Get Them to Look Inside

Put their favorite toys inside the crate and urge them to go and fetch it. Never think about closing the crate door during this time. They are not at home with it yet. When they would go inside, they will try to look around and check the crate out.

french bulldog dog having a good time with a tennis ball, in living room , looking at owner very carefully

 

Make it Comfortable

Except for the costly ones, most crates are not a comfortable place for resting. So place a blanket on its floor while still continuing to put treats and toys inside it. Your dog will start to like the place, find it comfortable. At this point, try serving their meals close to the crate.

newborn puppy sleeps on cookies sweet dream

Put the Crate Somewhere Familiar

In the beginning, put the crate somewhere accessible but not close to their beds. When your dog would start to sit inside the crate, even for a moment, change its place. This time, put it near their beds. Don’t replace their beds immediately. Let them know the crate is solely for their use.

Start Counting

In the beginning, the dog will not stay inside for long. It is still not time to close the door. If you close it, they will feel scared. At this point, you need to check how long they stay inside. Make sure all of their regular meals and fun time happens in and around the crate.

golden retriever puppy lying down near empty feeding bowl

Close the Door, but Not Fully

While your dog is resting inside, close the door but do not lock it. See how they react when they see the closed door. The dog needs to feel that a closed door does not mean any harm. During this stage, you will need to monitor your dog.

dogs and storms

Leave Them in the Crate

Now it is time to see if you can leave your canine friend in the crate while you are away. Move away from the crate but stay close enough to check if they are getting restless.

Slowly, try to increase your length of departure. However, never leave the pet inside the crate for a very long time. In the beginning, leave them for 30 minutes, then 1 hour, then 2. And every time you come back, surprise them with a treat.

Make it a Reward, not a Punishment

Serve all of their meals inside the crate. Keep all of their toys inside it. Always keep the interior space comfortable. Pat them and rub them when they are inside. At this point they are completely at home with the crate. Now train them to close the door by themselves every time they go inside. And don’t forget they are now staying inside the crate. It is also something for you to get habituated with.

young woman with her dog in a bed.

It Takes Time

Training your dog to love the crate is a lengthy process. It will not happen in a week. It took me over a month to get my Pug-Man (see what I did there?) to love his crate. Some dogs are hard to train. They will take longer to love their crates. And sometimes, they may not like the present crate so you can try using a different one. Be patient. If both you and your dog get restless, no crate will come to any use. Best of luck.

 

About the Author:

John Howes is the founder of PetCareUp. 29-year-old, entrepreneur, pet lover and passionate blogger. He loves to write about pets and helps pet owners to choose the best products for their animal companions.

child with kitten on grey sofa at home

Preparing for a New Cat

It’s National Pet Month, and this year it’s all about promoting responsible pet ownership and care.

Bringing home a new member of the family can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. But sadly, in many cases, pets are soon abandoned or rehomed. Sainsbury’s Bank has created a guide to preparing for a new cat, covering everything you need to do before bringing your new friend home. It also includes different routes to adoption, such as rehoming a shelter cat.

You can download it here: Preparing for a New Cat

About the Author:

Sainsbury’s Bank has a range of pet guides and tools for new and existing pet owners. From helping to understand your cat’s behaviour to dog-proofing your home, they have something for every pet owner.

golden retriever puppy lying down near empty feeding bowl

10 Things You Need Before Bringing Home a Puppy

portrait of brown cute puppy with sunset bokeh background

So you’ve decided to add a furry bundle of joy to your home this spring! Not only will your new puppy bring excitement and energy to your life, but she will bring some challenges too. One of the best ways to meet those challenges head-on is to be well prepared for your puppy’s arrival.

Here are ten key things you need to get before your puppy comes home this spring.

1. Puppy Food & Treats

You want to start your puppy’s life out the right way by feeding her the best food possible. Puppies have big appetites and high caloric needs to help them grow strong and healthy. The ideal food for puppies will have the proper mix of fats, protein, fiber, and vitamins and minerals to help your pup grow into an active adult dog.

little puppy dog maltese eating his food from a bowl in home

2. Food & Water Bowls

Your puppy will need food and water bowls when she comes to her new home. Plastic bowls and ceramic crocks might seem appealing, but plastic can harbor residue and bacteria while ceramic may contain lead and can easily break. A stainless steel bowl is the best choice for your puppy because it is easy to clean and sanitize and too cumbersome for your pup to pick up and carry around.

golden retriever puppy lying down near empty feeding bowl

3. Crate & Bedding

A crate is a must-have item for new puppy owners. Crates allow confinement in an area that allows you to monitor and house train your puppy. Additionally, they mimic a warm, cozy den, giving your puppy some safety and security. Make sure that any crate you purchase is sized correctly so that your pup can stand up, turn around, lie down, and stretch inside.

 golden retriever puppy sleeping with toy on the bed

4. Training Pads

House training requires a significant amount of patience from both you and your puppy. Puppies need time to learn and grow before being trained to eliminate outside of the home. But during this training period, mistakes will happen. Be prepared and have some puppy training pads on hand to cover for those moments when your pup doesn’t make it to the door on time.

 puppy jack russell terrier lying on a carpet and looking up guilty.

5. Pens or Baby Gates

You may want to confine your puppy to specific areas of the house during house training or for her safety. Purchasing a pen or baby gate to keep her cordoned off will help your puppy stay out of trouble. And if accidents happen, at least they will occur in an area that you’ve chosen ahead of time.

6. Leash & Collar

Your puppy will need a leash and collar when you bring her home. The collar holds your dog’s license and identification tag while the leash attaches to the collar to allow you to walk your pup. Make sure the collar you choose is adjustable and that it is not on the puppy too tightly. The leash should be well made and strong. Start with a 4-foot long leash to help with training your puppy to walk.

dog with leather leash waiting to go walkies

7. Identification

Your puppy will need identification of two kinds: an identification (ID) tag and a microchip. The ID tag will hang from your puppy’s collar and provide pertinent information about her, such as her name along with your name, address, and phone number. A microchip is a small chip that contains a code stored in a database with your information on it. The chip is implanted between your puppy’s shoulder blades and can be used to identify her if she ever gets lost.

 a terrier wearing a collar and a dog tag is sitting on a chair looking at the camera. vertical shot.

8. Chew Toys

Puppies love toys, and because of their natural desire to chew and the teething they experience, chew toys are a must if you want to keep your furniture and personal belongings safe. Hard rubber toys, nylon toys, and quality, well-made thick rope toys will satisfy just about any craving a puppy has to chew. Just be sure to purchase the right size toy for your puppy and always supervise her play.

french bulldog dog having a good time with a tennis ball, in living room , looking at owner very carefully

9. Grooming Supplies

Grooming is an important part of your dog’s physical care, and it’s good for your puppy to learn how to behave during grooming as well. Make sure that you have these items on hand when your pup comes home so she can learn to be squeaky clean right away: comb, blow dryer, ear cleaning solution, cotton balls, nail clippers, shampoo and conditioner, and towels.

adorable cute young puppies outside in the yard taking a bath covered in soapy bubbles

10. Training bell

Many dog owners have had success training their puppies to ring a bell attached to the doorknob when they have to go outside. You can purchase a dog bell at your local pet store, or find an upcycled cow bell to hang from your front doorknob. Bell training works for some dogs, so give it a try with your new pup.

cute pug with red checkered sweater outside on the grass

Most importantly, you need lots of love and patience when raising a new puppy. Give her those critical qualities, and she will return them to you a thousand times over.

 

About the Author

As a dedicated pet owner and advocate, Alexandra Seagal has created Animalso.com to educate fellow pet owners on how to make your dog’s life with you the best it can be. Aside from writing, she loves spending time with her children and enjoys the company of her two dogs and one cat.

happy golden retriever dog smiling

11 Safe Dog Breeds for Kids

A family is incomplete without a dog. However, there are many factors to consider while ensuring the safety of your kids. Statistics show that around 70% of dog bite victims are children, and 61% of these bites take place at home or in another familiar place. Many of these accidents can be prevented if you understand the temperament, size and the level of energy of the dog.

So which dogs are the best for kids?

Here are our favorite family-friendly breeds to guide you!

1. Pug

Pugs love human companionship, making them the perfect breed for kids. They are sturdy and compact, and known as the clowns of the canine world because they love to show off. Originally bred to be a lap dog, the Pug is one of the most kid-friendly dogs there is.

cute pug with red checkered sweater outside on the grass

2. Boxer

Boxers are energetic and affectionate. And most importantly, they love children! They are playful and love being fondled. Being a people-oriented breed, they prefer to have their owners close by and require plenty of exercises and playful interaction.

Good Aiderbichl Boxer Dogs Sanctuary Dogs playing in the grass

3. Mastiff

Don’t be intimidated by the Mastiff’s giant size. They are good-natured and love being around people! This breed is perfect as a family pet as it is gentle with children. They are also loyal and protective creatures who will knock an intruder to the ground if they feel the owners are being threatened.

english mastiff cuddling with loving owner outside

4. Old English Sheepdog

The Old English Sheepdog is affectionate and loving, especially towards kids. Predominantly a working dog it has an instinct to herd its family, which might not be so bad if the kiddos are being mischievous. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the breed is athletic filled with clownish energy.

cute fluffy old english sheepdog tilts head

5. Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retrievers are another popular breed that’s eager to please. They’re bouncy and enjoy playing with family members. If you have a hyperactive child who just won’t go to bed on time, consider this playful and athletic breed. They both will be worn out just in time for bed!

happy golden labrador retriever dog laying down outside in the grass

6. Dalmatian

Dalmatians love playing with people. The spotted Dalmatian would be a great addition to any family. Remember “101 Dalmatians”? They are energetic and love running around with the by day, and snuggling by night. It’s an added bonus if you’re a horse-loving family – the Dalmatian has a symbiotic relationship with horses.

cute dalmatian puppy laying outside in the grass

7. Dogue de Bordeaux

The Dogue de Bordeaux is also known as the French Mastiff. They are extremely affectionate, making them an ideal breed for kids. If you don’t mind its drooling nature the Dogue de Bordeaux has a calm temperament and is very loyal to its owners. Although gentle with kids the breed is excessively protective of its family and owners.

bordeaux dog on a leash having a fun walk with owner outside

8. Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is another popular dog breed ideal for kids and any family. They are very active, energetic and friendly, and are very popular in the United States. This breed is very intelligent and always eager to please. They love playing with kids making them perfect pets for your growing family. The “Buddy” franchise movies keep Golden Retrievers a popular choice among families.

happy golden retriever dog smiling outside

9. American Staffordshire Terrier

The American Staffordshire Terrier is an extremely loyal breed that would make an ideal pet for your family. In the 21st century, the Staffordshire Terrier was the number one family dog in the country and became the poster dog for WWI. Pete from the “Little Rascals” short movies was an American Staffordshire Terrier.

American Staffordshire Terrier playing and running in the grass with a ball toy

10. Newfoundland

These guys are big, but don’t let their size stop you from adopting one. These gentle giants make wonderful family dogs. They love playing with kids pulling them around in a sled on the snow. Remember Nana from “Peter Pan”? He was a Newfoundland.

black newfoundland dog sitting in the grass outside

11. Mutts

And let’s not forget about mixed breeds! These unique dogs are a great addition to your family. Don’t forget to apply the temperament, size and energy level guidelines when picking a mutt for families and kids. It’ll be safer for your kids and the dog!

Portrait Pet Mixed Breed Dog Dog Cute Hybrid Good

It’s an exciting time for kids when opting for a pet. Always meet the dog and ask the breeder or shelter a few questions before making the decision to bring the dog home. After all, the safety of your kids and the dog is your responsibility!

About the Author:

Jonathan Carter is passionate about dogs. He writes from anything between how to train your canine pet, which breeds to keep to rehabilitating a problem dog. You can find his articles on Digital TV Bundles blog.

small dog maltese sitting in the suitcase or bag wearing sunglasses and waiting for a trip

A Guide to Flying with Your Pet

small dog maltese sitting in the suitcase or bag wearing sunglasses and waiting for a trip

It has become a common sight to see someone seated with their pet in the airport departure lounge, but the concept of traveling with a pet is still new to many people. If you happen to be new to the idea of traveling with your pet, there are some things that you’ll need to do to ensure that the journey is a safe and stress-free for both yourself and your pet.

Preparing for your journey is incredibly important, so remember to do your homework. Is your pet eligible to fly? Age, size, health, and breed are big factors to this. If your pet is staying in the cargo hold, is the temperature safe for them? A good tip is to call the airline beforehand to make sure your pet can fly, and fly safely before purchasing your tickets.

Remember, most animal health experts agree that animals are usually better off staying at home with a care-giver, or in a boarding kennel during short family holidays. If your pet is flying with you, check out the infographic below for more information on what to expect on your travel day including: pet travel safety, restrictions to travel, flying with service and support animals, and do’s and don’ts for pets traveling in cargo.

travel with pets infographic

About the Author: Amy Whitley is a blogger, editor, writer, and outdoors expert who lives in Southern Oregon. She hikes, camps, and skis with her three sons, between blogging on a wide range of outdoor subjects.

 

golden retriever inside home carpet with furniture chair

7 Quick Tips for Getting Dog Hair Out of Your Home

girl owner is combing out the fur of retriever puppy after shower

If you’re sick of attacking every square inch of carpet, clothing and upholstery with tape to try and get rid of pet hair – I don’t blame you! Dogs make wonderful pets, but the continuous shedding can be a nightmare. The good news is there are some tricks you can use to quickly get rid of hair before it drives you insane.

1. Ball Up Hair with a Damp Sponge

Hair in carpets is a common problem for dog owners. Many vacuum cleaners struggle with hair – especially when it’s ground into carpet fibers. Fortunately, there’s an easy way to remove hair that your vacuum can’t dislodge.

For this tip, just run a slightly dampened sponge over carpets and stairs. Some hair will stick to the sponge, but most will ball up so it’s easy to pick up. Give it a try – you’ll be amazed at how much hair is hiding in your carpets.

golden retriever inside home carpet with furniture chair

2. Give Your Dog Regular Grooms and Baths

Grooming your dog is important for both health and minimizing loose hair. A quick brush every few days can remove much of the hair that would otherwise end up on your carpet or sofas.

If your dog has long hair, you should use a variety of brushes to remove as much hair as possible. For undercoats, a rake-type brush is best, while a regular brush is useful for longer hairs. If your dog hates grooming tools, you can also buy gloves with built-in brushes.

Baths can also be a good way to manage hair and reduce pet dander. Be careful though – bathing too often can cause a dog’s skin to dry out. Most experts recommend bathing a healthy dog once a month using specialist dog shampoo.

adorable cute young puppies outside in the yard taking a bath covered in soapy bubbles

3. Use Damp Rubber Gloves to Strip Hair from Furniture

If your vacuum doesn’t have a pet turbo attachment, damp rubber gloves are a cheap and reusable alternative for fabric and upholstery.

Just run your hands under a cold tap, wipe them until almost dry and run the gloves along fabric and upholstery. The dog hair will be attracted to the rubber, so you can remove large clumps in one go. The same technique can be used for cars or clothes.

 home portrait of two cute children hugging with puppy of chinese shar pei dog on the sofa against black wall

4. Vacuum High Before Low

The most effective way to remove dog hair is regular vacuuming – but make sure you vacuum high areas first. You can also sprinkle baking soda over your carpet before vacuuming to loosen hair.

On a side note, I recommend buying a vacuum with both a powered brush bar and a pet turbo tool if you have a problem with hair. The brush bar will dig deeper into carpets to remove more hair, while a turbo tool can make quick work of sofas and mattresses.

happy dog is lying on back on the bed - selective focus

5. Remove Hair from Clothes in Bulk

If you have a dryer, you can remove hair from clothes in batches. Put your hair-ridden clothes into the machine along with a drying sheet for around 10-15 minutes. The spinning should loosen the hair which is then collected in the lint trap. While this tip won’t remove all hair from your clothes, it’ll get rid of most. For the rest, try using some tape or a lint roller.

very much sick dog , isolated on a white background under towel

6. Buy an Air Purifier

This is the most expensive tip, but can make a big difference – especially if you have allergies to dust or pet dander. Air purifiers filter both small particles and hair, which prevents it from circulating around your home. The best models are also fitted with HEPA filters, so they remove pollen, dust mites and other allergens.

It’s important to make sure you clean the filter though. If your dog sheds a lot, the filter is likely to clog which can stop it from being effective.

labrador retriever with bone is waiting at home.

7. Clean Wooden Furniture with Anti-Static Spray

Carpets and upholstery are the worst culprits for trapping pet hair, but that doesn’t mean wood furniture doesn’t need cleaning too. Hair can often get stuck with static electricity, making it difficult to remove. You can solve this by using anti-static dusting spray before wiping the furniture with a soft cloth.

cute samoyed dog chewing firewood on wooden floor and fireplace on background

Bonus Tip: Match Your Clothes and Carpets to Your Dog!

If you’ve had enough of cleaning, you can always buy carpets or clothing that match your dog’s fur. The hair won’t go away, but it’ll be much less noticeable!

 young woman with golden retriever dog sitting on sofa

Summary

Dealing with dog hair in your home is a lot of work. Many dogs shed all-year round, so you don’t even get a break during winter! The tips in this post can make removing hair much faster though, so you’ll spend less time vacuuming and more time enjoying your pet.

Do you have any questions about the tips in this article? Or do you know a different method for cleaning dog hair? If so, let me know in the comments!

About the Author

James Hall is a blogger and freelance writer from the UK. He’s currently head writer at SpotlessVacuum.co.uk, a site that helps consumers choose the right vacuum cleaner. In his free time, his favourite hobby is hiking with his family and two golden retrievers.

7 Things You Need To Know Before Adopting A German Shepherd Wolf Mix

Research is important before adopting any pet, but especially so for German Shepherd Dogs (GSD) and wolves. If you are reading this article, chances are you are either considering or have just adopted a GSD-wolf mix, also known as a wolf dog.

The full extent of personality traits and training along with legal and health implications of owning a GSD-wolf mix is beyond the scope of this article, but hopefully this will give you a starting point to direct further research. One of the best resources is to find others who own or have owned wolf mixes and GSDs.

This will help you understand the unique qualities of both of these bloodlines and get a better grasp of the requirements your new puppy may need. Another good resource is wildlife education groups that can give information on a wolf’s natural instincts and habits in the wild.

1. Personality

Anyone that has ever owned a GSD can tell you they are literally a breed apart. German Shepherds have a rich history of interaction with humans, much of in the context of protection and performing a job first and being a pet second.

They are highly intelligent, energetic and very powerful dogs. Many are shy when it comes to meeting strangers, preferring the company of one or two special people in their household. Wolves are very similar in some ways. They are less adept at being guard dogs as they are even more shy and fearful of people, but they are still very intelligent and powerful and pack oriented.

Because of the characteristics of both sides of the bloodline, your puppy will likely require special understanding of pack mentality and socialization training no matter how much “wolf” is in his bloodline.

2. Legal

One of the first things to consider before getting a GSD-wolf mix is the legality of owning such a dog. Many states have outlawed the ownership of wolf-mixes outright. Others have left the legality of such up to the local governments. While some places do not outlaw ownership, many have stricter requirements for owning these dogs than other breeds of domestic dogs. Some of these require special licensing and registration and may even specify habitat requirements.

Even if your state or local government does not have any laws or requirements regarding the ownership of a wolf-hybrid dog, you can still run into trouble. Wolf-hybrids are often banned from housing areas such as apartments or communities governed by homeowners associations. Be sure to investigate these areas as well before acquiring a wolf-hybrid as a pet. Do your research and make sure you are willing to take on not only the emotional responsibility but the legal responsibility of owning such an animal.

3. Cost and Fraud

A big component of the decision to acquire a GSD-wolf mix is cost. These puppies are not cheap and if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. Expect to spend anywhere from $700 to $3000 for a wolf-cross puppy. Beware that many breeders advertise their puppies as wolf mixes but in reality they are GSDs mixed with Malamutes, Huskies or some other “Nordic” breed.

Often these breeders are breeding wolf-look puppies rather than wolf-crossed puppies. Again, if you truly want a GSD-wolf mix, do your research before buying.

Ask questions. What is the generation of the puppies (F2, F3, etc.) in relation the original GSD-wolf mix (F1 generation)? Does the puppy’s age coincide with the natural breeding season of a wolf? Does the breeder have the parents and any other generations on premises? Be aware that there are no official registries for wolf breeds so any registration certificates are likely worth only the paper they are printed on.

4. Health and Medical Concerns

The health concerns for wolf-hybrids are no different than for any other breed of dog. Wolves and domestic dogs are susceptible to the same diseases and parasites. Aging related changes are similar for both as well. It is important to know the health and conformation of as much of your puppy’s lineage as possible in order to help predict what problems may occur down the line.

GSDs do have medical issues that seem to be prevalent in the breed. Hip dysplasia is probably the most well-known but there are a host of other issues that are common. GSDs are prone to certain types of cancers and neurologic issues. Talk to a vet or reputable breeder about common medical disorders to get an idea of what to look for when picking your puppy.

Preventive health care is as important for GSD-wolf hybrids as for any other dog. Routine exams and parasite screening are important. Your veterinarian will provide recommendations for routine care as your pet ages.

Controversy surrounds the vaccination of wolves and wolf-dog mixes. Most veterinarians recommend vaccination even though it is considered off-label as there is no research or proof that dog vaccines work in wolves. There is evidence from wolves kept in cavity, such as in zoos and other wildlife parks, that vaccines do provide protection.

The biggest concern again is the legality of vaccine status in wolves and wolf mixes. Mostly this applies to the Rabies vaccine. Usually there will be some stance on the legality of Rabies vaccination included in your local laws on the ownership of wolf-dog mixes.

5. Training

It is important to realize that GSD-wolf mixes are not just mixed breed dogs. Despite the similarity of their genetic makeup, wolves are much difference from the domesticated dogs. Dogs are genetically hard-wired to live with people and to adapt to their social norms.

Wolves on the other hand are hard-wired to be wild animals – constantly alert to danger and hunting for food. A wolf-hybrid is an unpredictable mix of these two opposite dichotomies. As stated earlier, GSDs have a personality of their own. Just as there are variations between the personalities of siblings within a family, there will be variations between individual puppies within a breed or even a litter.

The importance of this is that when training your puppy, you have to understand the characteristics of both sides of the lineage and interpret that into a training approach. Both “breeds” are highly intelligent and able to learn, but their motivation to do something is much different. Whereas dogs have an innate desire to please bred into them through hundreds of generations, wolves have a short attention span and will often stop listening when they become bored of the task.

The challenge is to keep your puppy intellectually stimulated and interested. If you have limited experience in training dogs, it is a good idea to find a reputable trainer to help early on before your puppy develops bad habits that will be even harder to correct. A good idea is to find a trainer that specializes in working with GSDs or Nordic dogs or a trainer that works with military or police dogs. It wouldn’t hurt to consult with trainers and handlers of wolves as well. If you can find someone well-versed in the training of wolf-dog mixes, ask him or her for advice and tips.

6. Lifestyle

Just as in deciding to have a child, the decision to get a puppy will involve major lifestyle changes. This is especially true with GSD-wolf mixes. A GSD-wolf puppy requires a large time commitment, especially early on. If you travel a lot and cannot take your puppy with you, you may want to reconsider getting a GSD-wolf. Because of their sensitive nature, a GSD-wolf puppy may not do well with spending large amounts of time in the company of strangers without you present.

Consistency is the key when training and socializing a puppy. Your puppy needs to recognize you and other family members as his pack and he needs to understand his status within the pack. Without this consistency it will be hard for him to adapt and handle new situations.
You can read more information on dogstruggles.com

7. Energy

Your puppy is high energy and intelligent. This is a dangerous combination for a puppy that is bored and left alone. Puppies that do not have appropriate mental stimulation and physical exercise can be a destructive force on your home. Be sure to spend lots of time with your puppy in a playing and training situation and give him an area to run and explore safely.

In addition, puppy-proof your home to protect your belongings from destruction and your puppy from ingesting something dangerous. If your puppy is to be given unsupervised time in a yard, be sure the fences are high and sturdy. GSDs and wolves are very adept at climbing and digging and if something interests them outside of the fence, they will work diligently to get to it.

As stated in the beginning, this is not a comprehensive list of considerations when adopting a GSD-wolf mix. There are many other aspects to consider. My hope is this will give you a starting point to continue your research. The more you know before adopting a puppy, the better prepared you are to prevent problems and take care of others when they arise. Good luck with your new puppy!

 

About the Author:

Dr Sarah Robinson attended veterinary school at Oklahoma State University receiving a D.V.M. in 2008. Sarah’s longtime interest is to help people to better communicate with their pet companions, and in doing so, to help them to strengthen their relationships with their dogs and cats.

How to Choose the Best Cat Litter

If you have an indoor cat, you know how essential a good litter box is. Once your cat is potty trained, the litter box is a convenient way to keep your cat’s waste in a central controlled location, but who knew there could be so many choices for just pet waste? Each cat and cat parent chooses litter and litter boxes based on their personal preferences, but how to choose?

Non-Clumping Litter

Non-clumping litter is one of the first cat litters available on the market. It is typically made of clay, though other plant-based alternatives are available, and excels at odor control couples with the ability to effectively absorb urine at high volumes. Removing this type of soiled litter, however, can prove to be quite difficult. Once overly saturated, urine will begin pooling at the bottom of the box, calling for frequent cleaning.

Clumping Litter

Clumping litter is specially designed for the easy removal of urine and feces. They are typically made of either bentonite or all-natural fibers which help the litter form solid clumps to be easily removed. This type of litter is convenient to remove and requires less frequent cleaning.

Biodegradable Litter

Biodegradable litter is perfect for going green. Typical cat litter cannot be broken down and ends up in large mounds by the ton in U.S. landfills, adding unnecessary waste. Biodegradable litter is often made with natural environmentally friendly plant resources such as pine wood pellets, recycled newspaper, walnuts, barley, and more!

Silica Gel Litter

Silica gel litter, otherwise known as “crystal litter” is a granular form of silicon dioxide. Ranking as the most absorbent of any other type of cat litter, this material has the best long term moisture and odor control for owners who may not have as much time or energy to constantly clean their cat’s litter box.

Regardless of what you prefer, EntirelyPets offers an extensive product line of litter and litter accessories to best suit your individual needs!

10 Best Places for Pets to Live

Searching for your furry companion’s dream home just got easier. We’ve sniffed out the pet friendliness of the largest 100 US metros. Using four metrics – the percentage of land area devoted to parks, the number of pet-friendly rentals, the number of dog parks, and the number of pet amenities per household of each metro – derived a PetScore for any given metro up to 100.

Denver, CO ranked No. 1 as America’s most pawsome city with a score of 89.3! Denver’s pampered pooches enjoy a high number of dog parks while ample pet amenities help spoil the rest of its pets. Following closely second, San Diego, CA scored 88.5 due to the high percentage of land dedicated to open space – 21.9% in fact.

A strong pet-friendly apartment ranking and above average pet amenities helped Madison, WI secure the number three spot at 84.0.  Portland, OR (83.8) and Tacoma, WA (83.3) ranked fourth and fifth. Portland offers many fun off-leash locations for your canine companion while Tacoma is perfect for cuddling up with your feline friend given that 65.4% of available rentals are pet-friendly.

Check out the info-graphic to see the remaining PAWSOME cities.

Pick The Best Boarding Kennels For Your Pet When Off To Vacation

Owning a pet become troublesome when it is time to plan a vacation. Much as you may wish to it is not practical to take your pet along with you. There are restrictions everywhere. The best solution is to get him into a boarding kennel where he will be taken care of while you enjoy your vacation. You can pick a fancy boarding house or a plain one depending upon your budget, but with the basics. You have to make sure you are choosing the best for your pet. Here are some tips to consider on how to pick the best boarding kennels for your pet.

1. Choosing the Right Facilities

Check the boarding kennel for its facilities. At least, it must have decent accommodation for your pet in the form of a large and roomy cage. A good boarding kennel for pets should not be overcrowded and should maintain the cleanliness. Kennels usually have indoor runs and outdoor runs. These should appear clean. If bedding is provided, as it should be, check that it is free of fleas or bugs. The fancy kennels may have plush bedding and roomy facilities to offer to your pet.  

2. Will they Monitor your Pet’s Diet?

Food is important for your loved ones. Will the boarding kennel for pets consider special food instructions and follow them? Good ones usually take care of the diet instructions. It may cost extra bucks to you, but it is worth it if you want your pooch to be well fed twice or thrice a day, as he is accustomed to. Consider sending some treats with your pet too, so the staff is more likely to treat your pet to some extra love. 

3. How Friendly and Dog Savvy is the Staff?

If it is a one-man operation, then you ought to be careful before choosing this type of kennel for pets. The owner may be overworked and he is likely to neglect certain aspects. An ideal kennel has caring animal loving staff on payroll. Staff members, if present, will check your pet a couple of times in a day to ensure he is not down with an illness to make sure he is comfortable. Some of the better kennels may have people who will impart obedience training and even play with dogs and cats to keep them happy. A neglected pet can become depressed and stressed.

caring for a job with a full work schedule

4. Will your Pet get Exercise?

Whether it is a cat or a dog, exercise is a must. For dog kennels look for indoor and outdoor runs and open areas where the dog can exercise as and when he feels like doing so. An attendant who takes care of exercise and provide training to your pet is a welcoming feature. Sending a favorite toy might be a good idea also! 

exercise with dog

5. Will the Kennel be Able to Help with your Pet’s Health Needs?

If your dog is on medications, you may want to pick a boarding kennels for pets that has its in-house veterinarian or someone on call to give emergency treatments and regular medications, as may be necessary.

dogs and storms

In summary… 

It is wise to check the kennel before making a decision to board your pet. Visit sometime in the midweek when things are slow and be thorough in your inspection. Check staff, talk with the handlers, and get to know their approach. Check the kitchen where food is prepared. Food for pets should be stored in refrigerators or on shelves, not left strewn on the floor. Ask questions about feeding time and frequency, medications, and grooming offered by the facility. Check out the kennel for pets’ smells and ventilation. A kennel that smell means it is not well cared and your pet is not likely to receive a good treatment.

Once you decide on a particular kennel, get to know the vaccination certificates required and a breakdown of the cost. Do other pets in there appear happy? If yes, your pet will also have a good time.