As we enter the summer month of July (and finally get some warm weather!) we must remember and bring our attention to National Pet Hydration awareness month. As animal lovers, we care for the wellbeing and health of our pets and hydration is extremely important for your pets.
We Love Pets News
Chip Your Pet Month - what's a microchip?
The month of May is recognised as “Chip Your Pet Month,” to help bring awareness to the benefits of microchipping your pet. Microchips are tiny computer chips that are implanted underneath your pet’s skin, and each one has a unique number. These numbers are recorded and stored in a pet database, and when scanned the registered chips can be identified. Statistics show that pets with a microchip have a much higher chance of being reunited with their families if lost!
A happy dog and one that gets the right amount of exercise is far less likely to feel anxious and stressed. The vast majority of dogs also love to be around humans, unless of course they have been mistreated.
Dogs do however need support from their owners, and it is important for us to acknowledge that they don't come with an inbuilt rule book of how to behave acceptably in a human world. As owners we need to understand the tools that dogs need to be able to relax in the human environment because if they aren't relaxed they can't learn the correct responses that will be socially acceptable to humans. Failings in us to provide the adequate support leads to an emotionally aroused dog that will be experiencing anxiety, fear and frustration.
Canine aggression towards people is often due to an emotional conflict. In order to avoid this, dogs need consistency and predictability in their interactions with humans they come into contact with. Dogs have coping strategies to help them deal with the challenges of living in a fast paced 21st century human world. If the dog is unable to cope in a situation there will be a stress response which is a physiological response (not an emotion). Stress brings out the necessary reaction that will enable the dog to cope. It is part of a survival mechanism and stress happens in dogs as much as it does with humans.
Dogs will learn from bad experiences and will take on strategies to help them avoid similar experiences in the future. For example, ''it hurts when I get picked up by children.” This dog may run away to a 'safe' place if it sees a child approach it or growl knowing this causes the child to go away.
If a behaviour can prevent a negative experience from happening the behaviour will increase in frequency and the dog becomes confident in certain responses it shows.
E.g., “When I growl my owners leave my food bowl alone, when I snap the child goes away, when I bite people don't try to move me off the sofa, etc.”
Dogs need choices regarding their behavioural responses to stressors. We need to be able to recognise when a dog is becoming stressed so that we can provide strategies for them to cope i.e. provide safe places, provide mental stimulation, encourage natural behaviours, allow them access to resources to support them so they are able to relax. E.g., Anxious dogs will pace until a safe place is found. Dens/dog beds are safe so dogs need these areas where they can retreat. A sense of safety is important as a dog needs to know it can escape harm and be able to withdraw from situations. If stress cannot be reduced and coping strategies can't be offered then there is a welfare issue.
There are situations that might make a dog nervous if they feel they see someone or something as threatening and result in the dog biting. Dogs tend to give warning signs in the vast majority of cases rather than just biting out of the blue. There are five main reasons why your dog might bite a human. They are due to pain, protection, excitement and surprise. Let’s look at these in turn.
As part of being a responsible pet owner we all try and make sure we respect the wildlife in areas where we walk our dogs, and that we also look out for hazards that might cause injury or disease. With the surge in new dog ownership during the pandemic, many may not be aware of potential threats when out in nature with their walking companion -especially if their dog is off lead and not always in sight.
Many cat owners know that lilies are poisonous to their furry family member, right? If the stamen of the lily is inhaled or digested, it can cause severe kidney damage. But it's not just lilies you should keep away from your pet.
February is National Pet Dental Health month and, just like humans, it’s important to look after your pet’s teeth! Dental health is vital to your pet’s overall health and wellbeing and making sure they have regular check-ups and cleanings are key.
So, you want to add a cute furbaby to your family group; what are your first thoughts? Are you thinking of breeds? Colours? Long hair versus shorthair? (Because after all, you will need to clean up the hair that is shed) Where will your cat sleep and play? Will you need a cat flap? What is your approach to making a decision? Would it involve a family discussion or are you just going to find one you personally are drawn to? And finally, but importantly, where will you go to find your new pet?
It's the most devastating thing a pet owner could imagine and it's on the rise - dog napping cases are going through the roof and there's sadly very little being done about it. Dog owners need to be more vigilant than ever and take preventative steps to ensure their dogs' safety at home.