Dr.Harvey’s-Opinions Wanted

Okay, Fellow Pet Parents;

This is a question for all of you. I have recently stumbled upon a product called dr.Harvey’s.

Yes, I am a cynic I don’t believe half of what I read or see. Of course like everything else this is a company that seems ‘to good to be true’ and I am inclined to agree with the old adage that states ‘if it seems to good to be true then it probably is!!’ I have been reading rave reviews on their dog food, especially their newest product called ‘Power Patties’ made with Tripe (you can probably sense I am shuddering at this point….I am going to have to let my ‘girliness’ show here-eeeeewwwwww gross ! lol) Having said that I may have forgotten to mention (yep, I forgot) the fact that all these rave reviews were coming from dr.harvey affiliates and distributors! So you see my dilemma I am quite sure. Before I go and spend my hard earned dollars on a product (I would go broke if I tried everything out there claiming to be ‘holistic and healthy’) I would like to know if there is any basis for me to review it. In other words has anyone one tried it ? Do you like it? Dislike it? etc..etc… I would love to hear from some of you…

Thanks!!

(If everyone has not clued in yet to the fact that research is somewhat my thing, then I guess I will have to spell it out. I am a freelance writer/columnist with a ‘calling’ to provide as much information and education as possible on the subject of canines to all that are interested.)

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Puppy Vaccination Schedule

puppy getting vaccinations

Now that you’re a puppy parent, making sure she gets her puppy shots is one of your first, and most important, jobs (no pressure!)

Vaccinations are vital to little Fifi’s health as there are several common but very serious, and often potentially fatal, dog illnesses that you MUST protect her from.

On this page you’ll find a puppy immunizations schedule showing a list of the puppy vaccinations that are essential, as well as a few that are optional. It’ll help you figure out when Fifi’s next vaccination is due.

Remember, giving your furchild her shots is a very important part of being a good puppy parent!

What puppy shots does she need, and when?

Depending on the country, or even region, that you live in vaccination regulations may vary a little. This is a puppy immunizations schedule which shows the general recommendations for essential puppy shots:

6 – 8 weeks DHLPP + Corona
9 – 11 weeks DHLPP + Corona
12 – 14 weeks DHLPP + Corona
16 weeks – Rabies

Once your little one has had her three sets of combination vaccinations plus the Rabies shot she will need to have them repeated on an annual basis.

The DHLPP puppy shot is a combination vaccine that protects against 5 separate diseases :

  • Distemper
  • Hepatitis
  • Leptospirosis
  • Parainfluenza
  • Parvovirus

There are additional puppy shots that your veterinarian may recommend. These include vaccinations for Bordatella (commonly known as Kennel Cough), Giardia and Lyme Disease.

If your puppy will be spending much time at a doggy daycare, or if you expect to have to board her at a kennel or similar facility, she will need to have her Bordatella (Kennel Cough) vaccination too.

Whether or not little Fifi needs these particular puppy shots will depend on variable such as where you live and whether or not she will be spending a lot of time at puppy day care etc.

Some dog breeds are particularly sensitive to the Parvovirus and require a 4th Parvo vaccination. These include, but are not limited to, Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers and American Bulldogs. If you own one of these dogs be sure you discuss this with your veterinarian.

Allergic reactions can happen

It is possible that your puppy could have an allergic reaction to a particular vaccination. These kind of reactions can be:

  • MildMost reactions are mild and symptoms can include a slight fever, lethargy or a depressed appearance and/or decreased appetite. Most of these type of symptoms are short lived (but can appear several days to weeks after the puppy shots were given). They usually don’t need veterinary treatment.
  • ModerateSymptoms of a more serious allergic reaction usually involve swelling and/or hives. Often particularly noticeable around the mouth, face and neck, although welts can appear anywhere on your puppy’s body.This kind or reaction usually occurs within a few hours of the vaccination. It can progress and become severe, so if you notice any swelling or hives appearing on your pup, take him back to the veterinarian’s office right away. Treatment usually involves steroids and maybe anti-histamines.

  • SevereThe most serious allergic reaction to puppy shots is anaphylaxis. This is a life-threating condition which usually strikes within minutes of the vaccine being given. It may start out with vomiting/diarrhea and a loss of balance. It causes a sudden drop in blood pressure and swelling which can result in breathing difficulties, seizures and even death.It’s an emergency situation and if you have already left the veterinarian’s office you need to return there immediately. your puppy may need oxygen, IV fluids or other medical intervention.

Luckily moderate to severe allergic reactions to puppy shots are pretty rare and are generally much less of a danger to your puppy than the diseases they prevent.

There seems to be a higher incidence of allergic reaction to the vaccines for Rabies, Parvo and Leptosirosis.

There are some dog breeds that are more prone to these kind of reactions than others. They include, but aren’t limited to, Miniature Dachshunds, West Highland White Terriers, Old English Sheepdogs, Akitas, Portuguese Water Dogs, Weimaraners, and Harlequin Great Danes.

The bottom line is that you need to watch your puppy closely for the first day or so after he’s had his puppy shots. Any major reaction is most likely to occur within 24 hours. A allergic reaction of any sort is unlikely to happen after the first shot though, it’s subsequent ones that you should pay particular attention to.

Don’t panic about this though, thousands of puppies are vaccinated every day with no ill-effects, it’s vitally important to protect your dog from the deadly illnesses that these shots prevent.

Why are puppy shots necessary?

puppy with veterinarianYou wouldn’t dream of refusing to get your child vaccinated would you? Of course not. Well, your little fur-child needs her shots for the very same reason, to protect her from getting sick.

Little puppies have a certain amount of natural immunity that they get from their mothers milk, but that wears off somewhere between 5 and 8 weeks of age. After that they are at serious risk of contracting any serious, and often potentially fatal, canine disease.

So, take little Fifi to your veterinarian just as soon as you can. Make sure that she’s up to date with all her needles, and is on a puppy immunizations schedule, so that she has the chance to grow up into that happy, health dog of your dreams.

Tired of chasing your dog down the block? Read on-Mark Siebel

Come-Recall command. Tired of chasing your dog down the block? Read on..
by Mark Siebel – Owner – DOGGIE STEPS Dog Training

Have you ever seen the movie “Funny Farm” with Chevy Chase? He has an Irish Setter named “Yellow Dog” and as soon as he brings him home, the dog runs away! Throughout the film, the dog reappears but will never come to anyone who calls him. Don’t let this happen to you! The come/recall command is a vital connection between you and your dog. It is important not only for safety, but for establishing the appropriate hierarchy in your pack structure.

The come command can be mastered with only a few simple exercises. With consistent practice and praise to your dog, your neighbors will be astonished in no time! To ensure your dog WON’T be a Yellow Dog, follow the below simple tips:

Come is ALWAYS a happy place. The come command should ALWAYS result in praise and affection for your dog. You NEVER want to recall your dog and correct or discipline. Any corrections or discipline should be used when you approach your dog, not on a recall command. A good recall exercise can be achieved on your daily walk; with your dog on the lead, run backwards and command come in the most energetic, enthusiastic voice you can muster. The more tone/pitch/frequency in your voice the better! I want your neighbors to look at you funny due to your heightened excitement! Bottom line, your positive energy will attract your dog to come to you, and will be seen as a happy place.

Hide and seek. A dog’s best sense is scent, followed by sound, and finally sight. To challenge your dogs’ senses and to help him register the come command, practice a good ole’ fashioned game of hide and seek. While your dog is distracted eating or playing with a toy, have you or one of your children run and hide in another room and yell “come fido!” When your dog seeks you out (via scent & sound) praise him with good come! This exercise will teach your dog that he is coming to a happy place when he finds you in your hiding spot.

Off-leash at your local baseball diamond. A great way to get your dog prepared for off leash obedience as well as mastering the come command is to work him at an enclosed baseball diamond. Find a local ball diamond and arrive early or late in the day to ensure you will be the only ones there. Go prepared with a leash and poop bag to pick up after your dog. Enter the ball diamond and be sure ALL gates are closed behind you. Release your dog from the leash and begin to walk the perimeter of the park. After only a few times of this routine, your dog will begin to follow/come to you! You can also practice running backwards combined with the come command in the ballpark as well. For a local ball diamond near you check out: http://phoenix.gov/parks/parks.html

Finally – Practice, practice, practice. Mastering the come/recall command takes time and practice. As I’ve stated in prior articles there is NO perfect dog, so, remember that if your practicing come/recalls be sure to use the leash until your dog is 70% confident of the command. The leash will always reinforce that the dog MUST come to you.

Sometimes the solutions to our problems are right in front of our noses. Don’t make the come command any more difficult than it is! Dogs instinctively WANT to follow a leader. With the proper recall techniques – tone of voice, praise, and affection – your dogs days of “cat & mouse, chase me down play” will be a thing of the past. Say NO to Yellow Dog, and say HELLO to your Good Dog!

Mark Siebel has trained over 500 Arizona Valley dogs, has dog training tips published monthly in various AZ magazines, appears on NBC Arizona Midday & ABC Sonoran Living, speaks regularly with local schools youth groups about the importance of dog safety and ownership, and donates time to kids who want to learn more about dogs. He is a member of APPSA (Arizona Professional Pet Sitters Association) and ASC of Arizona (Australian Shepherd Club of Arizona). Mark owns (2) Australian Shepherds named Leinie and Kugel. For more information or general dog questions, go to: http://www.doggiestepsdogtraining.com/index.html or call Mark @602.318.0122.

Review : Taste Of The Wild- Pet Food

Since the time of the recall I, like many other pet owners found myself on a quest for the perfect food. The closest thing I could find in a commercial kibble was a brand named ‘Natures Way’ or was it ‘Natural Way’ one of those 🙂 Their product was actually endorsed by Lassie (which one I am not certain, I believe there were a few of them) Anyhoo, I had decided to go ‘Raw’ and used ‘Nature’s Whatever’ as a base. The food was decent with much better ingredients than anything else on the shelves and I am including all of the TOP brand names in my comparison.

I, much to the great dismay of Proctor and Gamble and all their evil competitors have learned to read, as well as decipher packaging labels!!

Although I had done considerable research I was not entirely convinced that my dog was getting all the necessay vitamins and proteins etc. It seems there is an ongoing debate between scientists and experts as to feeding raw and the nutritional value of vegetables and the necessity or lack there of, of wheats,grains,barley etc..in a canine diet.

Okay, getting to the point I was on a shopping trip to my local feed store (the best place to shop for pets!!) and as usual I was scanning all the top brand name dog foods for changes in their food ingredients. (Science, Eukanuba, Diamond, Purina O.N.E. etc) Personally i think these pet food companies think that enough of the population is completely oblivious, idiotic and apparently illiterate that they do not need to change their ingredients. I find this rather insulting on behalf of the American public!!

Sorry I went off rambling again!!

The owner of the store approached me when she heard me discussing the food ingredients with my fiance. They had just got in a brand new food that neither her or I had heard of.

‘Taste of the wild’ is grain free and the 1st listed ingredient is meat (actually ‘Bison’ in the formula I purchased- the high prairie formula) the second ingredient is meat (Venison-again -high prairie formula) the 3rd ingredient is lamb meal,the 4th is chicken meal. If you know anything about reading labels then you know where I am going with this. I had to try it.

We are finishing up our first bag -the 30lb size. My pitbull’s coat is shiny, shiny, and she is muscling up. We have seen no more signs of what I thought was mange it has completely cleared up. Her constant itching has left as well. I liked the results and I grabbed some consumer ratings from a site for you to see.

Again I am not making anything off this (but hey if you guys at ‘Taste of the wild’ want to sponsor my site ….I am game :))

Five Stars *****so far I will keep you posted as we get through bag two.

p.s.They also have cat food

P.P.S Please excuse any typo’s and grammar/spelling mistakes it is after 1:00a.m. and I am too sleepy to care!!

Addendum: I had to add this as an afterthought…I feel I need to mention that a company can legally claim that they do not use rendered animals in their foods if they in fact ‘purchase’ their ‘meal product’ from another company…technically. But it is still in their product they just do not have to ‘legally’ state it. Ethically…there are no ethics here…it’s all about MONEY!!!!

Reviews for Taste of the Wild

REVIEWER RATING & REVIEW HARLEYMIKE (0) 06/24/2008

FEED IT TO MY 3 BOSTON TERRIERS. THEY SEEM TO LIKE THE POULTRY MORE THAN THE VENISON AND BUFFALO.SO FAR SO GOOD ,HEALTHY DOGS & SMALL PILES. KIND OF EXPENSIVE THOUGH.
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kellybelly2007 (0) 06/13/2008

My dog pug is very happy with this food (high prairie formula) I used to fed her with purina puppy chow and she puked. I changed it into beneful and but she is shedding so bad,had a very bad breath, her eyes always got greenish liquid, she excreted rancid smelling liquid that came out from her butt, and she got severe ear infection that we spent a lot of money sending her to the vet ….it costs us $89.00 every visit plus the ear ointment and ear liqid cleaner that costs us $60.00. So i read a lot of stuff about dogs diet in the internet and changed her dogfood to taste of the wild and she really loves this new dogfood.After a week feeding her with taste of the wild all the health prolems she had are all gone. And she is now a happy and energetic pug. I recommended TOTW to my mother in law’s chihuahua too. My mother in law was very worried because her chihuahua would just sleep and do nothing..she dont even play fetch anymore and she dont even guard her mama at night which she usually do before…..from science diet to TOTW after a few days she bacame the active dog and every night she would guard her mama like a tough cookie 🙂
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shopgirl1 (0) 06/12/2008

The GMO comment below caught my attention because when I checked the bag, it did not say anything about genetically modified ingredients. I called the customer service line for Taste of the Wild and they assured me that NONE of their ingredients are genetically modified in any way, and that they firmly stand by the quality of all ingredients. If you have any further concerns, give them a call 800-977-8797. They are quite helpful!
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Khaki (0) 06/02/2008

this food is great tasting, but is filled with GMO ingredients. I had to throw away a greatly loved food because GMO engineered foods aren’t going to ruin our lives if I can help it.
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mcn1197 (0) 05/31/2008

My Rottweiler liked this food, but, then again, he likes anything. Mainly, I fed him the High Plains formula, but his system never seemed to agree with him much. His body and coat prospered while he was eating TOTW, but his digestive system had trouble completely digesting it. He had a ton of gas, meaning that his stomach and small intestine were passing undigested components of the food to his colon. His stools were often very runny and inconsistent, as well.Overall, for the most part, the ingredients in TOTW are very good, but my Rottie didn’t do well on it. So, we made a switch. For the money that we were paying for our Rottie to eat TOTW, it definitely didn’t work for us.
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bulldog07 (0) 05/05/2008

Seems to be a descent food, seems to be heavy on veggies. Also, it seems to have a lot of different kinds of meat in it, and if your dog develops a protein allergy, that will make it very difficult to find a protein the dog has not been exposed to.
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kpusa78 (3) 05/03/2008

Ingredients are great and my girl loves the flavors…not the fish as much, but she’ll still “wolf it down”. : )She does great on this, her fur is super soft, her feces are smaller, and the shedding seems to have subsided a great deal. I love the concept of no grain, but some of the other brands just had too much protein and she didn’t do so great digestively with those. She is thriving on this. This will be a new, permanent addition to her rotation.
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dakotabarbay (2) 04/28/2008

This food has been amazing for my 11 month old German Shorthaired Pointer. She has been on it for about 6 weeks now. It was difficult to find a food that could support her through training, and hunting. She lost weight on Innova Puppy, but has been able to maintain good muscle mass, as well as has much less gas on the Taste of the Wild (Wetlands). She has always been a picky eater, but she gobbles this food down as soon as it hits the bowl. Her coat is beautiful also. I would recommend this food to anyone who has a high energy dog.
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Cathleen2u (0) 04/28/2008

Before we bought our Chihuahua puppy, we researched the internet for over three weeks (20+ hours) on the health and well being of our new-to-be adopted family member. We wanted to make certain she had the best food with a high protein base as dogs are carnivores with meat eating teeth and intestinal tracts with no grains as they do not have the intestinal systems to break down these types of food. This diet would enable our new puppy to have a good foundation in life with regard to her bones, teeth, organs, skin and temperament. In addition, we wanted to try to keep vet visits to a minimum. After a truly exhaustive study and the blessing of meeting an amazing man at a Women’s Show in Seattle whom happens to be a biology major (and can hold a candle to any Naturopathic Vet or Doctor) with an emphasis in nutrition and almost twenty years in the pet food industry, we made the decision to let our puppy test our top three choices in three bowls side by side: Taste of the Wild (Roasted Bison and Venison Blend), Innova EVO (chicken blend) and Innova Puppy Formula. She absolutely loves the Taste of the Wild and EVO close second. I believe she may like the type of meat better in the Taste of the Wild, so we will try the red meat blend of the EVO as the gentleman stated above raved about the human grade quality of meat in the EVO food and the fact that his dogs are on it. BTW, Wellness is a take off of this product, but not as high of quality meat or protein. She was weaned on Pedigree and when we tried to give her a sample a week later she wouldn’t even go near it!!!Our puppy’s health and disposition are amazing with her coat looking better and better each day and her droppings having less odor! We hope her breeder reads this website and makes a healthy change for their Moms and Pops, as well as their pups. I highly recommend both Taste of the Wild and EVO for the health and longevity of your pet – give your dog the test and your fears a rest!!! P.S. It is well worth the extra money to invest in a high quality pet food for your pet(s) and it may even save you money in vet bills and possibly the life of your pet. I have found that the local feed stores that appreciate and stock high quality pet foods are the most reasonably priced (ie. Issaquah Feed Store, Issaquah, WA. Best of luck!!!
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susieesposito (0) 04/15/2008

I have 3 German lined working German Shepherd dogs,which they need the protein because of their working drives, my male has had an overly sensitive belly for his whole life he is now 1 year old…I have spent so much money on all types of foods trying to find one that was good for him and after 4 days of using the Bison/venison formula his bowel movements started to actually form which is something that NEVER happened. This food is great!!!! I am totally sold on it and the dogs Love it so much. They poop alot less too! Which is a good thing…because this means they are getting more protein and less junk. It is the cheapest non grain food I have found and used also. Do not hesitate on trying this food. 30 pounds for $47.00 … and it is healthy and an excellent food….the dogs think it tastes great too. I go through a bag a week….with a 1 year old, 7 month old and a 12 week old GSD.
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SusanH (0) 04/12/2008

My Lab had chronic diarrhea for 2-1/2 months – I tried all sorts of high end hollistic foods – e.g., Solid Gold Barking at the Moon, Natura EVO, Innova, Healthwise, California Natural, Eagle Pack Hollistic Select, Natural Balance Potato & Duck – plus all sorts of medications from the Vet and none of these helped. I finally tried TOTW Wetlands Foul and his stools ae totally normal! I am elated. All dogs are different and you have to find the right food for each individual dog. BTW, I am feeding TOTW with a top dressing of Natures Variety raw meat.
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snowangelz (0) 04/06/2008

I just bought my first bag of totw The Bison and Venison formula. I don’t know yet how well my 2 shepard/chow mix dogs will do yet but I do know they both wolfed the first bowls down and wanted more and I haven’t seen that reaction to any food I’ve given them in a very long time. I have tried alot of the holistic and organic formulas and they will rather go hungry than eat them. I am excited to see them eat this food they way they do. I pray they do well on it. I will let you know how they are doing in a week or two.
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JMZMSD (0) 03/27/2008

Leafy – check out this website for the meat content. http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/dog_food_reviews/showproduct.php?product=1286&cat=allMy dogs absolutely love this food, and my GSDs coat has begun to improve in as little as a few weeks.
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petanarchist (8) 03/13/2008

I am really nervous about using this food in any heavy rotation. I have some trial bags and the ‘kids’ seem to like it just fine, but to be honest, I do not have a comfort level with this manufacturer. Leafy (below) made a couple of interesting observations.I’d love to think I could get a great bag of food at a great price – but my experience has taught me you ‘don’t get what you dont pay for.’ I’m staying cautious and will keep reading reviews to see what mid-term results brings…
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PETMAN (0) 03/12/2008

Best Grain Free on the Market!!!! The price is very affordable too!!!
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ahorse33 (0) 03/09/2008

I have tried High Prairie and Wetlands Canine and my dog loves both of them. Just from looking at the indgredients on the back it looks like a pretty decent dog food. I think it is the best dog food available compared to some of the dog foods offered at the local pet stores in the community. Some of these other dog foods that are rated a little higher than this one are very hard to find and I have looked through many different stores.
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deb371 (0) 03/02/2008

I feed 9 Bostons, 2 Yorkies and 3 Westies TOTW. I rotate with Evo, Wellness Core and Orijen. Rotated with the other grain free foods it give my dogs beautiful coats, good stools and energy. While it does have some fillers, it is an ok food. Not all dogs do good on grain free foods, but most do. When it comes to food for all my dogs, the price does not matter. But the quailty does. In my opinion a breeder should use the best food, no matter what it costs. Just this breeders opinion 🙂 Update: TOTW did well with my dogs, but I did however notice their stools were huge for a grain free food. Changed to Natura.
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Leafy (0) 02/28/2008

Does not disclose their meat content. A lot of pet food companies jumping on the ‘grain free’ bandwagon but the food doesn’t mean anything if its more potatoes/tapicoca/etc than the meat itself. They’re merely replacing the grains with poatoes. I emailed Diamond and all the vet could offer me when I asked about their meat content is ‘proprietary information’ ???
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sharnor (0) 02/27/2008

I have retired racing greyhounds and a pit bull–I tried “taste of the wild” and the dogs devoured it. I like to give them a plain kibble small meal morning and night and this is it–they beg for it.
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snarfal (0) 02/26/2008

My dog loves the Pacific Stream/Salmon TOTW — really loves it. He used to be on Timberwolf Ocean Blue and loved that too (he loves fish!). I will say that on Timberwolf his coat was shinier and softer… but his bowels movements are normal on TOTW, something only the Ocean Blue offered before. He has plenty of energy too. My only reservations are A) not organic and B) made by Diamond. However the price is right and there don’t seem to have been any truly negative reports… I just bought my 2nd 30-lb bag.
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The importance of knowing your breed of choice

The importance of knowing your breed of choice.

By Michele Lee

Last week we covered where to look and what to watch out for when acquiring a pet.
(see https://fidosplace.wordpress.com/2008/06/23/beginning-your-journey-for-a-new-dog/)
I now would like to go briefly over ‘choosing’ your breed.
It is not a good idea to make choices for a pet based on some of the following commonly used criteria.

  • Awww, he is so cute!! (a puppy)
  • Needs a home, will be euthanized if he/she is not adopted (shelter animals),
  • Has an intimidating look that will keep strangers at a distance.
  • Have always wanted a certain breed of dog.

‘Just because he is cute’ is a thinking that will quickly wear thin,
if you are not prepared for what a new puppy will introduce into your household.
Puppy’s like to chew, it may be a shoe, your leather couch or just your big toe.
Needle sharp teeth with a constant need to chew (somewhat like the old ‘Pacman” game),
will be something you can pretty much count on well into a dogs first year of life.

It is an admirable thing to bring home a pet from a shelter, it is something more people need to do.
However,if you choose a breed that you are not familiar with you may end up with a few unexpected occurrences.
I am speaking from experience. I myself wanted to give a shelter dog a home and quickly fell in love with the large brown eyed Beagle that looked at me with his eyes just begging to become a part of my family.
I thought it was odd that Georgie (the name we gave him) was obviously a purebred Beagle and young, only a couple of years old. I was mystified by what had caused him to end up at our local pound.
(I can hear Beagle owners everywhere laughing at me as they are reading this)
I soon found out that Beagles are a tracking breed and they ‘love’ to track.
They will find a way out of a fenced in yard when let out to potty or dart out a door if they pick up a scent.
And they are always picking up some kind of scent!!
There are a lot of pets out there that have been rescued from shelters and have found themselves back out on the street, kicked to the curb by new owners that had no idea of what they were getting into.

I do not think I even need to go into much detail about what could happen when you choose a breed because of it’s fierce looks. That’s right, you may end up with a pet that will hold the flashlight for your burglar if he gets scratched on the belly!! This is the case more often than not with many breeds. Unfortunately, their owners try to make them aggressive or mean in a variety of ways.
The end result…the evening news covering a tragic story of a child being bitten or mauled by an animal.
What is not reported is that the animal has been mentally and physically abused by its owner.

Often, people have wanted a certain breed of dog for years.
They have childhood memories of knowing or owning one, they have read books or have seen movies that ‘starred’ one.
Whatever the reason they will go out and purchase the pet they have always wanted.
Listed below are some obvious examples of why this may not be one of the best ideas that you have had in your lifetime.

A Great Dane as a housedog may have a difficult time not running into and knocking over your prize collection of ‘what nots’ that you have distributed lovingly throughout your home
English Bulldog’s are most likely not going to be a great choice if you are looking for a pet that can make it through an agility course.
Jack Russel Terriers may be small but they are definitely not the lapdog that your elderly grandmother wants!!
Certain dogs believe it or not can be trained to use a litterbox but for obvious reasons if this is your plan I would have to advice against attempting this with anything but teacup sized breeds!!!

Many of have us lead different lifestyles and there are pets that are better suited to some than others.
Take the time to do some research before making a commitment that is much like having a child.

Beginning your journey for a new dog

Beginning your journey .

If your quest is for a family pet and not for breeding or showing, than an excellent place to start would be with your local Humane Society. These animals are in desperate need of a good home. Adopting a pet is ultimately saving a life, what could be more rewarding than that?

Another route for adoption are breed rescues and clubs that are ‘breed specific’.
They are easy to find via the internet and they often have available information on their animals history. Such as; where they came from, their temperament, their habits, age, if they are good with children or other pets etc.
If you have decided that it is a ‘puppy’ of a specific breed than it is to a breeder that you must go.

Searching for a breeder.

Many dog breeders by definition are unscrupulous and unethical. Unfortunately the ‘good’ ones are the minority, but they do exist.
It’s comparative to finding the ever elusive needle in a haystack, but with patience and good researching a conscientious and caring breeder can be found.
Be prepared and do your home work, learning as much as possible about the breed of your choice. Always consider your lifestyle when deciding. Just like humans some dogs can be much more demanding and higher maintenance than others.

Where to begin

Now is the time to practice patience if you are lacking in this area. Jumping at the first cute puppy encountered could lead down a path intermittent with vet bills and disappointment.

You can also be directed by clubs that are ‘breed specific’ they as well can be found on the internet and through the American Kennel Club registry. Through them you can find breeders and rescue organizations.

What or whom to avoid

Breeders that advertise continuously in newspapers and magazines. These kind of breeders have an ongoing supply and are either ‘puppy mills’ or ‘puppy brokers’. Both of which are extremely undesirable because they are in it for a fast buck and unconcerned about the health and welfare of their animals.

Pet stores offer animals that are either the remnants of a litter that a breeder was unable to sell, or they are acquired from a breeder that breeds specifically to sell to pet stores. Again you are running into ‘puppy mill’ breeders.

Contracts that require you to give a ‘puppy back’ out of your first litter when purchasing a female or maintain ‘stud’ rights on a male.

Claims that a puppy is ‘show quality’. There is no way of discerning if a puppy is show quality, unless it is several months old (at lease six) regardless of its pedigree.

’Tight’ line breeding, this is when close relatives are bred together for example; a mother and a son, littermates ( sister to a brother) or father to a daughter. This type of breeding is done to preserve all the quality characteristics of a bloodline, but it also doubles up on all of the bad genes and health problems.

Breeders that offer no health guarantee on their animals. For example; the puppy you purchase ends up with a genetic heart problem. Ethical breeders will either refund your money or offer you another puppy as a replacement.

Pups that are sent home with a buyer before at ‘least’ eight weeks of age. It is against the ‘law’ in many states. A law that has been implemented for a very good reason. Pup’s are too young to leave their mother before this. Health certificates cannot be acquired from a vet until all series of shots and worming have been completed. And this happens at the eight week mark.

What to expect from a good breeder.

You will be educated. Health and behavior issues will be addressed for their specific breed. Diet requirements and brands of food that are best suited will be discussed.The standards of their breed are explained while faults that may be apparent in their pups are pointed out. Responsible breeders will either give away or sell a pup at a greatly reduced price if it displays an obvious fault. But it is contiguous with the agreement that the pup is to be spayed or neutered. Honesty, as a rule is upheld by these breeders.

You will be invited to tour their facility/home and find that the living conditions are clean and comfortable. You will not see crates stacked on top of one another or animals confined in small crates or quarters.There will not be a large number of animals or several different breeds.

Highly reputable breeders may have a waiting list and nothing available until a later date. However, it is well worth the wait.
These individuals will not breed their females back to back (every heat) and will not breed them period,
until they reach a certain age.(usually the on second or third heat)
Also, they will discontinue breeding them after they have had a few (3-4 MAX) litters.
Normally these breeders will only have one to two litters available a year even if they have several females.

Ask for recommendations. Good breeders have no problem with recommending another breeder if they do not have anything available or what you are looking for. They will not slander others, but advise you of what to be cautious of.

Now you have the basics. Let me conclude with a reminder that a puppy or an adult dog is a big responsibility. They need plenty of attention and care not unlike having a child. When cared for properly they can be quite an added expense. Puppy’s will require training and patience. This is something to consider seriously before taking on the added responsibility of a pet. If you are prepared and ready for an addition to your family. You will have a very rewarding experience and a new friend

DEFEAT PARVO!!…This site saves lives!!!

UPDATE 05/25/10

Unfortunately the original link I had posted for the site I actually used for my dog is no longer active….but I did find another site that is extremely informative and helpful. They however do not use the same remedy that was used for my dog…but I still want to go ahead and have information available to you so that you do not lose hope or think that you have to either fork out hundreds of dollars to a vet or lose your animal….because this is not true you CAN do it yourself…you just need guidance and determination!!

Note: You will see me reposting this over and over in hopes that it will save a life!!!

Signs of Parvo : Dog or puppy stops eating, stops drinking, diarrhea-can be bloody with mucus and foul smelling, throwing up, refusal to eat or drink, becomes very weak and listless almost overnight. There are several virus’s and conditions that have similar symptoms. All of these result in death to the animal(s) because of DEHYDRATION. The treatment suggested below is for keeping your animal ‘Hydrated’ and will help the survival chances of any condition that causes ‘Dehydration’

Pictured: Our dog ‘Rain’ who owes her life to the treatment I am posting!!

This is a site I discovered when our pit bull was stricken with the deadly ‘Parvo’ virus.
I was absolutely devastated. My finances were not in any shape to take on the vet bills that can easily average from $1,000-$1,500. I searched the internet in desperation of discovering some sort of cure. Knowing how deadly this illness is I had no real hope of finding an answer.

I was wrong, I discovered a site with several different home remedies for a variety of things.He makes no promises…He is straight to the point.

If you do not have the the stamina ‘Hang it up!!’ You are wasting your time if you cannot completely dedicate yourself to your animal and pretty much forget about sleep ” (hopefully you will have some one to trade off with)

IT WORKED!!!!

I did everything he said, the only difference was I was able to talk my vet into selling me a bag of I.V. fluid. (Most vets will do this for you if they are half way decent) A vet tech also showed me how to administer it.

Don’t think you cannot not do it ‘YOU’ CAN, ‘I’ did.

http://wolfcreekranch1.tripod.com/heal_parvo.html

If you are reading this and you have an puppy stricken by this, My thoughts are with you….and I wish you the best. I make no money off the site I have mentioned, I do not even know the owner. But I can say that I myself did this treatment and it worked, it took about 48 hours for her to seem ‘somewhat’ normal… but she fully recovered.