Meeting the Neighbor Dogs: Part 2

A month or two ago I wrote about how the neighbor’s dog began visiting our yard during the day.  I thought maybe interacting with him could help Chihiro calm down about other dogs.  Unfortunately, I think the opposite has happened. I really should have known better.  Chihiro has been wary of other dogs ever since getting attacked by one (even though she won the fight, because the dog that started it was a little Puggle), so when teaching her to feel comfortable again around other dogs, I should take her to neutral territory with dogs I know and trust. For … Continue reading

Dog vs. Yard

My dear Algernon beneath his rhubarb My dog loves her big new yard. One of the main reasons why is how many more encounters with the local wildlife she’s been able to obtain. Some of them aren’t so great. Others prove amusing. She’s had run-ins with a yellow box turtle wherein she’s been so perplexed by this strange new creature that even the slow reptile was able to escape during her investigations. That’s right: Chihiro spent the whole time of her turtle examination doing what I like to call her investigative dance: legs and shoulders hunched, head darting in and … Continue reading

Preparing Your Pup for Back to School

For most of us, the last thing on our minds during the busy back to school season is the family dog. As it turns out, Fido might need you to prepare him or her for the change as well. Unless everyone was out of the home all day during the summer, just like during the school year, your dog’s gotten extra summertime company. Thus it might experience some separation anxiety when everyone goes back to their school year schedules. Pet site ZooToo has some tips for how to gage if your dog will have separation anxiety problems during the school … Continue reading

Aggression in Multiple Dog Households

Here at the pets blog we’ve published many articles on dog aggression. It seems like one can never have too much advice on how to handle it; anyone who’s seen dogs fighting, and not in the playful way, knows how upsetting it can be. Today I’m going to focus on how to handle aggression between dogs in a multiple canine living situation. If you’ve already one dog and you want more, you need to be ready for the possibility of the rare or occasional spat between them. If at all possible, introduce the dogs before adopting your second, to make … Continue reading

Female Dogs Might Think Differently from Male Dogs

Maybe I’ll learn by osmosis A recent article on MSNBC posited that perhaps female dogs are more intelligent than male dogs. Or at least, that’s what the sensationalist headline might lead readers to think. What’s really going on is that a study from the University of Vienna may have found evidence that male and female dogs think in slightly different ways. The study, led by cognitive biologist Corsin Muller, tested domesticated dogs for their comprehension of “object permanence.” Object permanence is a physical law stating that when an object disappears from view, that doesn’t mean that it’s ceased to exist … Continue reading

Electric Fences

Because Chihiro is at least part hound dog, we can’t rely on her to stay with us in our yard. She might be good most of the time, but all it takes is one squirrel or neighborhood cat and she’s off on the chase. So we made the decision to purchase an electric fence. This is a decision I made with much trepidation. I abhor the idea of causing any pain to my dog. But we just don’t have the budget for a real fence at the moment, and our yard is so large it would be a shame if … Continue reading

Canine Body Language, Pt. 2

Today I finally come to the conclusion of my series looking at explanations for the noises made and body language of dogs and cats. My information comes from articles published on website Paw Nation by animal behavior specialist Amy Shojai. The sounds a dog makes can tell us a lot about what it’s feeling. While barks are meant to warn the household of imminent dangers, they can also indicate that a dog feels conflicted. They’re both playful and defensive gestures; a dog barks when it wants to do something, but isn’t sure that it’s allowed. Thus a dog might bark … Continue reading

Canine Body Language, Pt. 1

Just as she did for felines, animal behavior consultant and author of 23 pet care books Amy Shojai recently shared her wisdom on canine communication on website Paw Nation. Many of us might think it’s easier to read dogs than cats, and while that’s sometimes true, it never hurts to try to learn what your dog might be thinking. Let’s switch it up from my previous posts on cat language a bit; first I’ll start by going over what the actual canine body language means, then I’ll cover the emotions behind various dog sounds. One thing I will copy from … Continue reading

Introducing Pets to Newborns, Pt. 3

Today I conclude my examination of how to introduce a household’s pets to newborns. On Monday I looked at how expectant parents can prepare their pets for the infant’s arrival; today I’ll outline the steps you can take after the baby is born. When it’s about time to bring the baby home from the hospital, first take something with the newborn’s scent on it, like a burping cloth, back to the house. This is most effective for dogs but can also help cats with the adjustment. Pets will then find the baby’s scent familiar once the infant itself arrives. You … Continue reading

Introducing Pets to Newborns, Pt. 2

Last week I started a series on how to introduce your newborn children to the household pets. I stressed that the most important thing you can do to make the transition as smooth as possible for all family members, human and animal alike, is to make sure pets still receive some exclusive attention. Today I’ll look at some other things you can do before the baby arrives to help prepare your pet. Both expectant and new parents have several options to prepare and properly train pets to be around babies. The nine months of pregnancy afford you invaluable time to … Continue reading