Category Archives: Misc Stuff

Dealing With Incontinence in Dogs

dog incontinence
Incontinence in dogs

OK – Now we’re going to talk about something that nobody ever thinks about, until it happens to them.

In our case, it happened to our senior dog, Baylor.  I’m the cute one in the picture at the top of the site and she’s the old, I mean “mature” one.

Even though she didn’t like me much, I still liked her and it wasn’t much fun watching her deal with all these problems.  Plus… it meant the boss had to pay more attention to her than to me, which was not cool at all!

We’re going to cover all aspects of dog incontinence, including a bunch of stuff you probably haven’t thought about yet:

  • Why you should see the veterinarian
  • Managing incontinence in your home
  • Protecting your home
  • Keeping the dog clean
  • Dog diapers

Go to the Veterinarian

The first thing you should always do when you’re having problems with dog incontinence is to see your vet. Just like in people, there are a lot of different reasons your dog could become incontinent, and there are a lot of things the vet can do to make the situation better.

We eventually found a drug that completely solved the problem, but one of the big problems is that you have to live with the incontinence for a while, while you’re trying to find an answer.

In our case, Baylor literally started dripping urine, on a constant basis.  If she laid down on the floor for 30 minutes, there would be a large wet spot when she got up. The side of her back leg would also be all wet from the dripping.

We eventually got to the point of using dog diapers, but we couldn’t use those right away because we needed to find out how the various drugs were working.

We ended up with a pretty good plan to handle the dog incontinence issues, but it sure took us a while to get it all figured out.  Luckily, we finally found the right wonderful, awesome drugs that made the issue go away.

Keep in mind that the number of steps you have to take will depend upon your specific dog and how bad his/her incontinence issues are.  Our problem was pretty severe, so we tried everything.  Hopefully your situation isn’t as bad so you won’t need to do everything we got to do.

Find the Right Space for Your Dog

One of the first things you have to do when faced with dog incontinence problems is to identify a space for the dog to stay in. This can be really difficult, because when a senior dog is involved, both you and the dog are used to them being a full member of the family with complete freedom within the house.

I’m not sure if it’s harder for the human or for the dog to suddenly have limits on where they can go.

Depending on the extent of the incontinence problems in your dog, you may have to use a space that is closest to the door they use to go outside.

In our case, the work space for the boss is the dining room, which is right off of the patio so we used that space. Since it’s where the boss spent most of her time, Baylor was content to lay at her feet and being restricted didn’t seem to bother her much.

Don’t forget, it’s not just the daytime you have to consider.  You also have to limit where the dog can sleep to make sure your home is protected.

Using Trash Bags

If you decide that the best space for your incontinent dog is a carpeted area, trash bags are a must.  These can be used to line the area and protect the carpet.

Any kind of trash bags will work, but don’t just take them out of the box and put them on the floor. They will go a lot farther if you cut them open.

Just cut down the two sides of the bag, or cut open one side of the bag and the bottom of the bag, depending on what works best for the space you have to cover.

Then, make sure you overlap the bags a little when you put them on the floor. You definitely don’t want to miss a spot and not be aware of it.  Bad things would happen and your nose wouldn’t like it very much.

Blankets Help With Dog Incontinence

Of course, trash bags is just one layer of protection needed when dealing with dogs who are having incontinence problems.  You can’t just use trash bags alone to cover the area because they will get wet, sloppy and make the whole situation worse.

You will have to find some old blankets to put on top of the trash bags.

We went through the house and grabbed just about every blanket that wasn’t being used and stacked them up by the back door. You should also grab a generous supply of towels and wash cloths while you’re at it.

Every time the urine soaked blankets were picked up, they were put in the laundry basket and replaced with clean blankets. If you’re lucky, you will only have to do this once or twice a day.  The dog incontinence issue we got to deal with was pretty bad so we ended up doing laundry several times per day.

Important Tip:  It’s a bonus if you can stick to either light blankets/towels/etc or dark colored ones until they’re all dirty.  It’s a lot easier to keep the laundry rotation going if you can throw everything in together.

Follow us on Facebook or Twitter to be notified when the rest of this article is posted.

In that article, we’ll talk more specifically about dealing with dog incontinence issues by keeping the dog clean and the use of dog diapers.  (Yes, they have dog diapers, yes they work, but there are some things you need to know first… and we’ll tell you about them).

8 Reasons Humans Annoy Me

Although dogs are awesome (and I can say that because I’m the cute puppy in the picture at the top of the site), I know there are things we can do that really annoy our human parents.  dog with bow

I get in trouble for jumping on people, barking too much, being a bed hog and begging for food (but I’m cute so they keep me around)!

But did you ever think about how humans annoy dogs?  Well you should!

People aren’t always easy to live with.  I’ve been talking to my dog-friends and we came up with a list of the 8 most annoying habits.   Of course, the boss doesn’t do any of these things (and yes… I’m trying to score points so I’ll get more treats).

8 Reasons Humans Annoy Me

  1. Yell at us when I bark.  Did you somehow forget we’re dogs?
  2. Letting us go out for a walk and then NOT allowing us to smell all the glorious smells that we’re faced with.  What’s the point of a walk if you can’t stop and smell the flowers, and sticks and candy bar wrappers and empty pop cans and those glorious trees and fire hydrants that were recently visited by my other dog friends?
  3. Taking us to the vet where “bad things happen” and then somehow being surprised that we get anxious when the scary lady in the white coat comes in
  4. Forcing us to learn how to do tricks that involve balancing food on our noses.  Even if we get a treat in the end, we hate this!
  5. Sweaters for dogs – have you not noticed that we have fur to keep us warm?
  6. The whole fake throw thing.  Big deal… you faked out a dog, is that really something you should be so proud of?
  7. Haircuts where we end up with fancy ribbons and bows.  Really?  We’re dogs, not Barbie dolls.
  8. Blaming us when you fart and it smells really bad.  Seriously, that wasn’t even funny the first time.

What do you think of our list?   I’m sure if there are any dogs reading this, we can come up with about a hundred (thousand) more  J
If you’re a human, are there things you do that you know annoy your dog?

How to Give a Dog a Bath, and Let You Both Live Through It

There is no question, dogs and baths don’t go together.  We don’t like them and they don’t like us.

Giving a dog a bath
Giving a dog a bath

And I hear humans like to give us baths even less.

However, I’ve been told that no matter how much we both hate it, it’s part of life I’m just going to have to learn to deal with it.

Over time, we’ve learned a few tricks that make giving a dog a bath a lot less painful… for everyone.

Use the Bathtub

Yes, you can give a dog a bath outside, but think about all of that room.  If the dog doesn’t like the water, shampoo, etc it’s much more difficult to control them when they aren’t in a confined space.

Keeping the dog in the bathroom (with the door closed) limits the amount of chasing you may have to do.  If you’re using a bathtub, you can even pull the shower curtain halfway closed, and put it on the INSIDE of the tub to make it even harder for the dog to weasel their way out.

You can also get a dog washing tub, but to us, these seem like more trouble than they’re worth.  Do you really have space in your home to store one of these when you’re not using it?   Do you really want to have to drag it out of storage and put it away every time you want to give the dog a bath?

Prepare, Prepare and Prepare Some More

One of the big keys to a successful dog bath is to really plan out the details. Don’t just think about it, you have to actually make a plan.

This includes having the proper supplies.  If you have to leave a wet dog in the tub because the shampoo is on the other side of the bathroom, bad things will happen.

Gather the following supplies and put then on, in or next to the bathtub.

  • Shampoo
  • Multiple towels
  • Something for your knees to make it more comfortable to kneel next to the tub, depending on how old you are J.   The boss is ancient and she has to put towels on the floor for her knees (and then she sometimes complains anyway!)
  • Prepare the water temperature – do you like baths that are too cold or too hot?  Dogs don’t either!
  • Hose attachment (we’ll talk about this more below)
  • Those dorky non-slip decals or mats.  Not having good footing can make us even more freaked out about the bath than we already are (of course, you should have these for your own safety too… assuming you use the shower for yourself)

Get a Shower Attachment

This is a must, must, must have when you’re trying to give a dog a bath. 

There are cool attachments shower attachments these days that make it easy to add a sprayer attachment to your showerhead.

Most of them have a simple piece that can be screwed in.  It goes between your showerhead and the pipe that comes out of the wall.   I know… don’t let it scare you if you’re not a plumber.  If you can use a wrench, you can install these.  The boss managed to do it and if she can do it… anyone can… except for dogs, you know… that whole “opposable thumb” thing causes us problems.

The big benefit of these is that you can get rid of that ridiculous cup that you used to have to fill up about 75 times for a decent bath.dog shower sprayer

Not only that, but it is about 6,362 times easier for the rinse part of the dog bath too, especially the underside.

Some of these even have a soap dispenser built into the sprayer.  This allows you to switch from suds to rinse with the simple click of a button, and more importantly… only one hand.

Brush the Dog

Although this isn’t required, it’s a good idea to give the dog a good brushing first before you give a dog a bath.  One reason is that it gets out the mats in the hair before it gets wet (when it will be much more difficult to get out).

Another reason to brush the dog before the bath is to reduce the hair that would otherwise get tangled up in your drain.

How to Give a Dog a Bath

1 – Get the Dog in the Bathtub

One word… treats.  They work for just about everything, and I’m not just saying that because I’m a dog.

Once you get the dog in the bathtub, ALWAYS keep one hand on their collar.  If you don’t know why this is important, you’ve never given a dog a bath before, have you?

This is why it’s so important to have everything within arms reach BEFORE you start.

2 – Do the First Rinse 

You should have already checked the water temperature, so now all you should have to do is pull the knob to turn the shower part on – but make sure it’s set up to go through the shower attachment.  If the dog gets hit with water from the showerhead out of the blue… bad things will happen.

Use your handy-dandy spray nozzle to get the dog wet, but avoid the dog’s head (for now).

3 – Add the Shampoo

If you’re using a sprayer that includes a soap dispenser, flip the switch so the suds come out.  If you have to do it the old fashioned way, squeeze the shampoo onto the dog’s back.

Remember to keep one hand on the dog collar while you’re doing this.

4 – Do the Shampoo Thing 

Now you should use your one free hand to lather up the dog hair.  Sometimes if you turn this into a mini-massage, it can help the dog relax.

5 – Do the Rinse

Use your fancy shower sprayer to rinse the suds off the body.  This is really where the sprayer comes in handy.  It’s especially easy to rinse the belly area with a sprayer vs the cup.

Although, something to remember… don’t reach around the dog and point the sprayer toward yourself, even if you’re “positive” that it will be pointed up into the dog’s belly.  If you miscalculate by just an inch, you’ll say a lot of really bad words and I’ll get even more freaked out.

6 – Pre-dry the Body

When you’ve washed and rinsed the dog’s body, you should throw a towel over their back as soon as possible.  Don’t take the time to completely dry the dog at this point, because you still have to wash the face.

At any point between now and the end of the bath, “the shake thing” could occur.  As I dog, I think the shake thing is awesome, but I get the impression that people don’t think it’s nearly as cool.

If the dog shakes when they are still sopping wet, there is a lot of water that will end up on the walls, floor and YOU.  I suspect this is the part that people hate.

However, if you put a towel over the dog’s back and do a quick dry (again, with one hand) as soon as the rinse is done, you can soak up a lot of that excess water before it ends up in a bad place.

7 – Do the Face 

In talking to my dog friends, they all agree about one thing.  The worst part of the whole bath thing is when you wash our faces.  We really don’t like it so you should do it last.

The face is more sensitive than the rest of the body, so you should be careful about the water pressure before you hit the face.

8 – Dry

When the bath is over, the dog will be really excited.  At this point, you should be focused on getting us as dry as possible, before we completely freak out and shake like there is no tomorrow.

One More Thing

It’s been proven over and over and over again… yelling, screaming and saying bad words won’t work, but treats and praise do work.

Have you ever seen those trained dogs that show up on talk shows all the time?

Have you ever seen how the dog gets a treat EVERY SINGLE TIME they do what they’re supposed to?

The more you give the dog positive praise and treats, the better behaved they will be… even at bath time.

If your dog is a real scardy-cat (pun intended), you might try having a second person help you give the dog a bath.  Their job should be to have a bunch of tiny treats and keep the dog’s attention on when they get the next treat, instead of the evil bath.

Enjoy the After Effects

When everything is done and you forced me to sit quietly in the bathtub while I had to endure all that water and sudsy stuff, you can’t get mad at me when I run around like a chicken with it’s head cut off.

Instead of getting annoyed and trying to control the dog after a bath, sit back and enjoy the show!

Grass Assassins

Not all dogs are Grass Assassins, but I am definitely one of them.   When I don’t pay attention to where I pee, after a few weeks we end up with a patch of grass the size of a dining room table that is dead.

That doesn’t really bother me, but the boss didn’t seem to be too happy about it.   She yelled at me about it, but I didn’t have any idea what she was talking about… I thought I just wasn’t supposed to pee inside the house, right?

There are quite a few options available for how to handle lawn repair from dog damage.

We thought we had the answer when she built a rock pit/sandbox.   Of course, this only gives me a place to pee where I won’t kill the grass.  If you’re looking for options on how to handle your dog’s poop check here.

It worked ok when the weather was nice, but in the middle of winter it became a problem because the snow and ice made it too slippery.

The task was made a little easier when she figured out that using a weed eater made it much easier to dig up the dead grass, but it still looked like a bit of a pain.

But still, every winter I stopped using it until the spring, which means we had more dead grass to deal with.   That meant every spring she had to retrain me to pee on the rocks and had to go through the arduous process of digging up the dead grass and growing new grass.

 

The Answer – Build A Rock Pit And Use Dog Friendly Ice Melt

  • Dig up the sod in an area at least 3’ x 5’.
  • Put in a border (this will be useful to help keep the rocks in the pit.   You can find these at any Home & Garden store.   The height of the border will depend on how you want to handle mowing.   Our border is shorter than the grass so that the people who mow the grass don’t have to trim around it.
  • You should also dig up another couple inches of dirt inside the border so the pit is deeper.   If you don’t do this, the rocks will spill out into the grass when the dog squats close to the edge.
  • Add a light spray of grass killer if you want to make sure that no weeds come through.
  • Add a layer of rocks.   Regular River Rock is the best because of the smooth edges.   The size of the rocks depend on the size of your dog.   If the rocks are too big, it’s harder for the dogs paws/toes to stay steady when they squat.   We originally used rocks the size of a golf ball for me.   We recently changed to the large pea size and I like those a lot better because they don’t make my toes have to work so hard to stand on them.
  • Train the dog.  This is the easy part because we’re sooooo smart.
  • It’s usually pretty easy to tell when a dog has to pee.   For most people it will be easiest to start first thing in the morning and when you come home from work.
  • Take the dog directly to the pit.   Hold their collar/leash so that they are in the middle of the pit.   Make them stay until they pee.   Like everything else… give them a treat.

It may take them a few minutes the first few times.   Since it’s a new surface to them, they will likely think they’re NOT supposed to pee there.   Follow the regular training guidelines when house training a dog (take her outside to the pit, say “potty” or whatever word you use, make her stay there until she pees, then give praise…)

Other Things To Know
If you live where there is a winter season you may need to watch for ice.   During/after a storm the dog will not want to squat/balance on the ice covered rocks and will start peeing in the snow… especially since the grass is covered up now.   If you spread pet-friendly de-icer it will keep the area ice free and usable all winter.

Make sure it is pet-friendly!!!   Most of the regular stuff can be dangerous for us.

You may need to occasionally spray the pit with kennel spray (link) if it begins to smell.   There are a lot of options for urine odor remover.

Make sure you get the kind that does NOT say “stops repeat behavior”.   This is a difference between the spray that is designed to clean and stop the animal from peeing there again and the kind you want that just cleans it.

This is the one we found that looks the best.

Another option is to give your dog pills that are sold to stop their urine from killing the grass.

We’ve never been a big fan of stuff like that because:

  • The boss is lazy and would have to remember to give the pills every day
  • We don’t like the idea of giving us medicine just because the boss doesn’t want to deal with something

Another product we tried was the spray that basically paints the dead grass green until it regrows new grass.   As you would expect, I found that it’s a funny color of green and it stands out, and it would take the entire season for new grass to replace the dead grass.

I don’t know why, but for some reason when I pee on the concrete patio, it smells.   It sometimes happens when there are thunderstorms.   Use the kennel spray from above and it goes away.

You can check out the other options for handling lawn repair here.

We’ve shown you quite a few options here.  Which ones do you think are the most successful?

Protecting Your Dogs From YOU

Dogs are awesome. 7980699_s

In fact, I’ve heard many people talk about how they like their dogs more than they like a lot of people. I could have told you this, but I’m a dog, so I’m a little biased.

However, just because we’re awesome, doesn’t mean that we’re the same as people, so you can’ t treat us like that.

Protect Dogs From Themselves

With a dog, you have to remember… you are the adult in the relationship and it’s your job to protect us. Sometimes you have to protect us from ourselves, because no matter how old we get, some of us still like to eat EVERYTHING.

Although, if you insist on seeing us like you do people, you should think of us as really little people. More specifically, you should treat us like little kids who still want to put everything they can grab into their mouth, even if it’s bad for them.

Babies don’t know any better, and we don’t either. Well, I know better because I’m 10, but our evil new puppy doesn’t know any better and tries to eat socks, ink pens, bottle caps and anything else she can find on the floor.

It may sound funny, but stuff like that can really do damage for a dog.

Protect Dogs From YOU

Not only do you have to protect us from the things we want to eat that are dangerous for us, you also have to protect us from YOU.

There are a lot of things out there that are dangerous for us that people just don’t know about. Sure, a lot of people do these things anyway and nothing bad happens, so they think that means it’s ok.

You can cross a lot of times without looking both ways and nothing bad will happen. Does that mean it’s ok to do? No. That means you’ve been lucky so far and you should change your ways before something bad happens.

With that in mind, here are a few things you should be careful of in regards to your dog.

Bones Are Bad

Everyone knows that dogs love bones, but that doesn’t mean we should have them. This is especially true of chicken or turkey bones.

Those types of bones have a tendency to break or splinter when they’re being eaten. This can be a really bad thing as those sharp, splintered pieces travel through our digestive systems.

The bad things can include internal injuries, bleeding and even stuff that is a lot worse.

People Food is Bad

Letting your dog clean your plate or eat dinner scraps seems harmless… until it isn’t.

The truth is that there are many kinds of people food that can be very dangerous to us dogs, and you probably don’t know what they all are. Since you don’t know what all of them are, why risk feeding us people food that could end up being really harmful?

Things as simple as onion rings or grapes are like poison to a dog’s system.

Food Recalls Are Bad

You’ve seen recalls in the news for “people food”, right? Things as common as eggs and peanut butter have been recalled over the last year because they were determined to not be safe.

Dog food and treats sometimes have the same kind of recalls. Keep an eye on the news to make sure you’re not feeding us stuff that has been determined to be unsafe.

Better yet, subscribe to updates from your vet’s website so you can be updated.

Toxic Plants To Dogs – House Plants, Christmas Plants and Cut Flowers

Did you know that you could be putting us dogs at risk without even knowing it?

Almost everyone out there has plants of some kind in their house.  Most people don’t think twice about bringing home new plants.  Many holidays and special occasions also introduce many new kinds of plants.

People typically don’t think about the possibility of plants being dangerous to dogs because of course they didn’t buy the plants for the dogs to eat.  However, we all know that sometimes dogs eat stuff they’re not supposed to.  Sometimes we get curious about the live plants and if a leaf falls on the floor we almost have to try and eat it.

We’re going to talk about three different types of plants/flowers:

  • House plants
  • Holiday plants
  • Cut flowers

All three types of plants have specific types that can be dangerous to your dogs.

20 Common Houseplant Dangers

Most people have various houseplants around their house.  They’re popular additions to many rooms because they enhance the look and feel of the room.  However, it’s important to remember that sometimes we can’t help ourselves from taking a little taste.

Mildly Toxic

  • Aloe Vera – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite or muscle tremors
  • Antherium – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Chinese Evergreen (Algaonema) – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Corn Plant (Draceana) – Can cause vomiting, drooling and staggering
  • Croton – Can cause vomiting and diarrhea
  • Dieffenbachia – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Ficus – Contact can result in skin irritation, vomiting and diarrhea
  • Jade – Can cause vomiting, depression and staggering
  • Mother-in-Laws Tongue (Snake Plant) – Can cause vomiting and diarrhea
  • Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum) – Can result in irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Philodendron – Can result in irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Poinsettia – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Poinsettias are generally over-rated as a toxic plant. Large amounts of the plant need to be ingested for even mild toxic signs to develop
  • Pothos – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting
  • Schefflera – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, drooling and vomiting

Moderately Toxic

  • Ivy – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, breathing difficulty, fever or muscle weakness
  • Norfolk Pine – Can cause vomiting, depression, pale gums and low body temperature

Holiday Plants

Remember that ingesting bulb plants often cause the most severe illnesses.

Moderately Toxic

  • Amaryllis/Amaryllis – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, depression, lack of appetite, tremors, drooling and abdominal pain
  • Christmas cactus, Thanksgiving cactus, Easter cactus (Schlumbergera or Zygocactus) – Large quantities can cause vomiting and diarrhea (possibly with blood) and mental depression
  • Holly – Can result in intense vomiting, diarrhea and mental depression
  • Mistletoe (Phoradendron) – Can result in significant vomiting and diarrhea.  Can also cause difficulty breathing, slowed heart rate, collapse and possible death.  Other potential symptoms are erratic behavior and possible hallucinations.
  • Poinsettia (Euphorbia) – Can result in irritation to the mouth, stomach and sometimes vomiting. It has a low level of toxicity and is overrated as a toxic plant.

Mildly Toxic

  • American Bittersweet (Celastrus scandens) – Can result in weakness, vomiting and seizures
  • Autumn crocus (Colchicum autumnale) – Ingestion of the bulbs can cause mouth irritation, blooding vomiting, diarrhea, shock, kidney failure, liver damage and bone marrow suppression
  • Burning bush (Euronymous alatus) – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, depression and lack of appetite
  • Christmas rose (Helleborus niger) – Can cause abdominal pain, vomiting, bloody diarrhea and delirium
  • Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium) – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, depression, drooling and lack of appetite
  • European Bittersweet (Solanum dulcamara) – Can cause drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, depression, lack of appetite, weakness, confusion and low heart rate
  • Jerusalem cherry (Solanum pseudocapsicuni) – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, mental depression, seizures, mouth ulcers, respiratory depression, shock and death
  • Thanksgiving cactus (Zygocactus truncactus) – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea and depression

Sending Flowers – Are They Safe?

When talking about plants and animals it’s important to consider cut flowers too.  These are frequently overlooked because they are more temporary.  However, they can also be very dangerous to your dogs.

Mildly Toxic

  • Baby’s Breath – Can cause vomiting and diarrhea
  • Bird of Paradise – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea or staggering
  • Calla Lily – Can cause irritation of the mouth and throat, vomiting and drooling
  • Carnation – Can result in vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and lack of appetite
  • Chrysanthemum – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and lack of appetite
  • Daisy – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, staggering and lack of appetite
  • Eucalyptus – Can cause vomiting and diarrhea
  • Gladiola – Can result in vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and abdominal pain
  • Iris – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and abdominal pain
  • Tulip – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling and lack of appetite

Moderately – Severely Toxic

  • Daffodil – Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, shivering or muscle tremors
  • Lily – Can cause vomiting, lack of appetite and kidney failure
  • Hydrangea – These flowers contain cyanide and can be very serious.  Can cause vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite or collapse.

We know that you don’t intentionally bring dangerous things into your house, but the fact is that many people just don’t know what kinds of “normal” things can be dangerous for us dogs.

Hopefully, this list will help you avoid problems in the future.

If you know of any other plants or flowers that we should be avoiding, please leave a comment so we can all be of it!

People Foods That Are Really, Really Bad For Your Dog… Even Though They Probably Really, Really Want Them

First of all, it’s really important that you know this… I am not a vet.  Duh… I’m a 10 year old yellow Labrador Retriever so I couldn’t get into vet school.

Don’t consider this to be advice from a veterinarian.  If you have any questions about these, you should talk to your vet.  Most of them are really nice and helpful.  (That is unless they’re telling us that I need to lose 2 pounds!)

The boss doesn’t think dogs should get any kind of people food.  She says it makes us less likely to beg.  (Note from the boss:  This is true.)  The other reason is that there are all kinds of people foods out there that can be dangerous to us dogs that most people don’t know about.

Almost everyone knows that some chocolate is bad, but did you know that sugarless gum is too?  This is a list of common people-food that can be really, really bad for dogs.


Potentially Toxic Foods

Alcohol
Central nervous system and respiratory depression

Apple Seeds
Contain the toxin cyanide

Caffeine
Can affect heart, lungs, kidney and central nervous system

Chives
Kidney damage

Chocolate
Baking chocolate is the worst
Can affect heart, lungs, kidney and central nervous system

Fruit Pits
Peach, cherry and plum pits contain the toxin cyanide

Garlic
Kidney damage

Grapes
Kidney damage

Macadamia Nuts
Severe illness, can affect digestive system and muscle

Moldy Food
Muscle tremors and convulsions

Onions
Kidney damage

Raisins
Kidney damage

Rotten Food
Botulism – Paralysis, slow heart rate, constipation

Yeast Dough
Central nervous system and respiratory depression

Xylitol
This is a sugar free sweetener that is frequently used in sugarless gum and candy.
Hypoglycemia, severe liver damage

Again… we are not vets.  That’s why we didn’t list the volume of the food that could be considered toxic.  In many cases it could be a very low volume that could cause significant damage.

Don’t mess around with these.  If your dog eats anything on this list, contact your vet immediately.  They will likely want to know how much the dog may have eaten, how long ago and the size of your dog.

Less Toxic, But Still Bad

This is also a list of foods that are bad for dogs.  The first list can be potentially toxic.  This list isn’t generally considered toxic, but these foods can still cause significant problems.

Dairy Products
Can be difficult to digest

Corn Cobs
GI obstructions or laceration in the GI system

Cooked Bones
Can splinter and break easily
This can cause obstruction or laceration in the GI system

Avocado
Vomiting and diarrhea

Again… the boss sometimes thinks she knows everything, but we are not vets.  This list does not include EVERYTHING that can be dangerous to dogs.  Our intent with this list is just to raise awareness to some of the people-food items that can be dangerous to dogs that most people don’t know about.

Have you heard of any others that we should be letting people know about?

Having A 2nd Dog – The Problems You Need To Solve

Having a dog is awesome (but I’m a 10 year old yellow lab so of course I think that!)  When you add a 2nd dog it can also be more awesomer.  (I don’t care if I just made up a word… it’s a good word!)

It gives the first, and best dog someone else to play with (even if it’s an evil puppy I’m not sure I like), helps them socialize, get exercise and stay out of trouble (a little).    However, if you’re thinking about getting a 2nd dog, there are a few things you need to be aware of ahead of time.

These are some of the problems we’ll be covering to start with regarding the problems of adding a 2nd dog to your household.

Playing Fetch With A 2nd Dog – This is not as easy as it sounds.  It takes some training to get both dogs to “share” when they play fetch.  We’ll tell you how to do it.

Getting Out Of The Car – Safely – This also needs a little thought ahead of time.  If you’re not careful, both one or both of the dogs could get hurt or someone could get too excited and run away.  Find out the trick to handling this problem.

Dogs Do What?? – You may end up with the 2nd dog wanting to eat the poop of the other dog.  Our evil new puppy does this but I just think it’s because she’s not that smart.  We’ll give you the options if you have a dog who isn’t smart too.  🙂

Grooming With Two Dogs – It’s likely to be very difficult to groom one dog without the other “helping”.  At least I call it helping, the boss doesn’t seem to see it that way.  Find out what she learned to do to make this easier for everyone.

Tie Out Chains in the backyard – You need to be careful that they don’t get the ropes wrapped up around each other.  We’ll also talk in another post about the magical twirly thing.   If you already have, or are thinking about having two dogs, this is something you really have to know about.

These are some of the problems about having a 2nd dog that we’ll talk about in other posts… and we’ll show you how to solve them too.  Check out the 2nd Dog Category on the right side.

If you want us to keep you up to date as update our site with more problems and solutions related to having a 2nd dog in your house, sign up for our newsletter.  It’s on the right hand site towards the top of the site.  (Underneath the cool picture of me… and the evil puppy.

What other questions/problems have you run into related to having a 2nd dog in your house?

Welcome To My Site

Hi everyone,

This is Baylor… the smart-looking dog in the picture at the top.  This is my first “official” blog post.   I didn’t know what a blog was when the boss first told me I had to do it, but I’m getting it figured out.  

I’ve heard living with dogs is hard… I think living with people is even harder.

As I write this, I’m a 9 ½ year old yellow lab. Being a 9 year old Lab makes me “perfect”. Hey… it’s not my description, it’s what the boss says all the time. Of course, she usually says that right after she introduces the new puppy (Scout) we got and talks about how much of a pain she is.

That’s how we learned to live with 2 Dogs… In A Townhouse. I was going to call this website “Your Old Dog Does NOT Want A New Puppy” but I was told that I just needed to get over it.

Anyway… the boss wasn’t very good at the “dog thing” when I first came home with her. I kind of got to do anything I wanted to because she was mostly too lazy to stop me. It worked out great for me… I got to bark a lot, jump on counters and do all sorts of cool stuff I don’t get to do anymore.

Over time it seemed like the rules changed and I didn’t know why. That was really confusing for me and I kept getting in trouble a lot. (I guess I wasn’t always “perfect”, huh?)

One thing you need to know before we start. The boss is lazy. She bought a lot of stuff that she was sure would make everything easier. If she could pay for something that would make it easier, she tried it.

I think she spent about $3 billion (that is $21 billion in dog money) trying to make it easy. Oh… a second thing you need to know. I sometimes exaggerate because it amuses me.

It seemed like she changed the rules every week and also brought some new gadget home every week and told me the thing would “make it easier”. A lot of the stuff she bought got thrown away the following week but some of it turned out to really be helpful.

It took a while, but eventually she learned a little more about how to handle new dogs and found the right gadgets and the right rules.

Finally after 9 years everything was good. Every tennis ball that got thrown was for me, every piece of food that got dropped on the floor was mine and I got to sit in the boss’s lap anytime I wanted. Life was good. (Hey, that’s a great phrase… someone should put that on t-shirts and sell them.)

Everything was fine until the boss started talking about another dog. She asked me if I wanted another dog to come live with us. I said “NO. You just figured out how to live with one dog, now you want two?”

How would we split up the toys and decide whose turn it was to chase the ball?

And most of all what would this do to the backyard where I poop? I expressed all of these concerns to the boss, but she just didn’t understand. (Aren’t the people who live in the house supposed to be smarter than the dogs?)

I thought the phase was over, but then… (cue the Jaws music) she went to the Animal Rescue League and came home with Scout. (I’m the one in the front who is annoyed and no, I don’t want to hear that you think she’s cute.)

The old dog is annoyed… the new dog is oblivious.

That prompted a whole new group of gadgets either designed for a puppy or for multiple dogs. Again, some of them worked, but a lot of them didn’t. It turns out that it’s a lot different when you have two dogs instead of just one “perfect” one.

Six months later, things are pretty settled. I’m still not a big fan of the puppy, but we have figured out how to all live together in a small space.

It’s definitely been a learning experience, but through trial and error, we’ve all managed to live in a pretty small space without destroying the house or annoying the neighbors.

I don’t want any other dogs to have to live through the stuff I had to deal with so I’m building this website to help them out.

I’ll tell you everything you need to know about how to live with us dogs in a small space and what you need to know about living with more than one dog. Also thrown in are some practical examples of how to handle regular dog stuff like brushing teeth (yes, you need to do it… but I don’t like it either) and other stuff like that.

I hope you check out the rest of the site and let us know what you think.
Baylor

P.S.

If you subscribe to our list we’ll let you know about updates to the site.  I don’t know what “our list” really is, but I know we DO NOT 8 billion messages all lined up to send you trying to pitch you new products.  We just want to be able to let you know when we add new, cool stuff to the site.