Does your dog growl, hide behind you, or display other nervous reactions when other dogs approach? Does he whine or refuse to leave when you try to drop him off at day care? With most dogs, this is caused by a lack of socialization with other dogs. Luckily, it’s often possible for your dog to get over his fears with a little help from you. Here are 5 things you can try. (more…)
Separation anxiety is a problem affecting many dogs who are bored, lonely, or afraid when their owners leave for any amount of time. Some dogs react by pacing, drooling, barking, or more destructive behaviors like chewing the furniture. Others may stop eating or try to escape the house. Learn more about this common issue so you can help your dog feel less stressed when you leave the house. (more…)
Puppies are a lot of fun. Cute, cuddly, and playful, they are the perfect companion—until they start biting, chewing, digging, and pooping on everything they can get their little paws on. We all love older well-behaved dogs, but why can’t your puppy be that way? If you are wondering why it’s important to take your puppy to a Seattle puppy training workshop, here are 3 reasons why. (more…)
At Central Bark, we care about your dog’s well-being, even when they’re not at our doggie hotel in Seattle. If you’re looking for a comfortable, durable dog bed for your pet, we have a few recommendations that will keep your dog comfy while standing up to any wear and tear Fido might put on the bed. Here are our top 4 recommendations. (more…)
The sun is finally shining, bees are buzzing and flowers are blooming. Our incredibly wet Seattle winter has turned into spring and here at Central Bark we could not be more excited for the warmer weather. Spring also prompts us to spend more time in our yard or the outdoors but this also exposes some unexpected health risks to our dogs if they ingest plants. With April being National Pet First Aid Awareness Month as well as Lawn and Garden Month, here’s a list of common toxic plants to keep an eye out for in your yard and gardens.
Flowers are beautiful to look at but they can be toxic if ingested by our dogs, here’s a list of toxic plants that might be in your yard or garden:
Lily of the Valley
Do you have a fruit trees or vegetable/herb garden? Below are some of the toxic (if ingested) plants to look out for:
Apricots*/Plums*/Peach*/Cherry* (stem, leaves and seeds)
Apples*/Cranberries (stem, leaves and seeds)
Sweet Potato Vine
*These fruits do contain pits/seeds; in addition to being toxic they can cause intestinal obstructions if ingested depending on size of pit and dog.
This isn’t a complete list of all the toxic plants to dogs, if you want more check out ASPCA’s extensive list which includes pictures, the toxic component and the scientific name of all the plants.
You’d spend every minute of the day with your pup if you could, but that’s just not possible. When you can’t be with your furry friend, how do you know which dog daycare in Seattle to send Fido to?
Here are 10 questions to ask potential doggie daycares.
1. Can you get a tour? Any reputable doggie daycare will allow you to tour the facility. This allows you to look at the cleanliness and get an overall sense of the atmosphere, whether the dogs are having a good time or whether there’s tension.
2. Is there a temperament test, and what does it entail?
3. What are the health requirements? Which vaccinations does my dog need in order to enroll?
4. What is the cost? Are there any discount packages available?
5. What is the ratio of staff to dogs?
6. What training and qualifications does the staff have? This would include things like animal CPR or animal behavioral degrees or certifications.
7. How are dogs separated? Is it by size, temperament, or activity level?
8. What is the schedule like? How much time do the dogs play, and how long are they kept in kennels? How much time is spent indoors versus outdoors?
9. Is there a webcam where I can view my dog at play throughout the day?
10. What other services does the daycare offer? Is there grooming or training available?
All doggie daycares are not created equal, so be sure to do your homework before deciding which one is right for your four-legged best friend.
Bath time for your pooch can be stressful for both you and your dog.
Here are 6 tips to make it a safe and fun experience.
1. If the only time your pooch is in the bathroom is when it’s time for a bath, she may associate the room as a scary place. When playing indoor fetch with your pup, throw a toy in the bathroom, or do some training in there. This can help your pet think of the bathroom as a place where fun things happen.
2. Use bathmats on the floor to make walking on linoleum more comfortable for your pooch. Try a gripper mat in the tub to prevent him from slipping.
3. Use a gentle shampoo specifically made for dogs so that it does not irritate their skin. Also, avoid getting shampoo in Fido’s ears as this could lead to an infection.
4. Never schedule bath time when you’re in a rush. Taking your time will keep both you and your pup relaxed.
5. If your dog exhibits symptoms of anxiety, be mindful of your tone. Cooing that “it’s okay” can sound like whining to a canine’s ears. Dogs respond better to a happy, singsong voice.
6. Seek out dog grooming in Seattle if the experience continues to be stressful for your dog. Professional dog groomers know the tricks of the trade to keep your pup safe and comfortable.
Bath time needn’t be a scary venture for you and your pup. With practice and patience, you can learn to enjoy the experience together. Otherwise, seek out a professional who has the know-how to make the experience as enjoyable as possible for your furry friend.
Daycare isn’t for every dog but a lot of dogs benefit from the extra playtime and mental stimulation that they receive at daycare. Puppies especially benefit from daycare and here are the top 7 reason daycare rocks for puppies!
1.Learn good play behavior
Just like any kid, puppies need to learn proper social etiquette. Having the exposure to different play styles and ages of dogs while at daycare will help you puppy learn appropriate play
2.Burn that puppy energy
No one will argue that puppies are bundles of energy! They quickly recharge after a nap and are ready to go again. The awesome benefit of daycare is that they can burn some of the puppy energy throughout the day rather than having it pent up for when you get home from work.
3.Reduced potty accidents in the house
It’s no surprise puppies have accidents in the house. A 8-hour work day is a long time for a puppy to hold its bladder, especially if they are still figuring out potty training. At daycare, they are able to relieve themselves when needed so no need to worry about your four-legged pup soiling on your carpet.
4.Emergency dog care
Life is never predictable, emergencies come up: work runs late, last minute trips, etc. If your puppy is already evaluated and a regular at daycare, it makes those emergencies less stressful and a tad bit easier to handle. Knowing your puppy is happy, comfortable and safe while you’re away is the greatest piece of mind.
5.Enforcement of training outside the home
One of the major benefits of daycare is reinforcement of training done at home while the dogs are at daycare. Ask the staff at your daycare facility to reinforce the behaviors you are working with at home.
6.Makes lots of dog friends
This plays into the dog socialization part but a lot of dogs find their doggy best friend while at daycare or make friends with everyone and play all day long!
If you haven’t already figured it out but puppies take up a lot of time and work. It’s sometimes nice to be able to drop off your four-legged kid at daycare for a couple hours so you can run errands, clean the house and then come back to pick up a tired puppy ready for a long nap.
We want to hear from you! Have you tried daycare with your puppy? What was your experience?
The spring weather is starting to arrive in Seattle and here at Central Bark we could not be more excited for it but with the warmer weather comes the beginning of the dreaded flea season; which many veterinarians say has come earlier in 2016 than previous years. Thankfully with a little knowledge we can all avoid the battle of the fleas!
First, how do we know if our four-legged friend has fleas?
- Are they excessively scratching, licking or biting at their skin?
- Take a flea comb and run it down the length of their back, if there’s fleas you will see small brown oval shaped insects on the comb.
- Check their fur for flea dirt (flea dropping), spread their fur back to the skin and if there’s a chance of fleas you’ll see small black flakes resembling pepper on the skin. If you’re lucky you might see a flea scurry away as you look at the skin.
Are we positive for fleas? Don’t worry, here’s what to do next:
Treating our pup: First we want to get them a bath! During the bath you want the shampoo to sit on them for approximately 10 minutes to ensure the killing of all fleas on them. Following the bath we want to wait at least 24 hours before applying any topical flea medication; these medications are spread using the dog’s natural oils in their skin which are removed during a bath.
Treating the house: If you have caught the invasion of fleas early you may not have to treat the house but I would recommend at the least washing your pet’s bedding and any other blankets they regularly frequent. A non-toxic way to kill flea eggs, larvae and adults in the house is to sprinkle food-grade* diatomaceous earth (crushed diatoms) on any bedding, couches, carpet and dark corners especially around baseboards. Fleas thrive in dark warm climates so focus on spreading the diatomaceous earth there. The longer you can wait the better before vacuuming all of it up but shoot for a couple hours to overnight before vacuuming it all up. The best thing to do in the following days and weeks is to vacuum, vacuum, vacuum!
Our four-legged friends and our house is flea-free so how do we keep it that way?
1.Use a monthly preventative flea treatment; there is a wide variety of options for monthly flea control and it really depends which you prefer and what works best with your dog. Options include: flea collar, spot-on topical treatments, oral pills, natural oils, flea powders and flea spray.
2. Keep the grass in the yard short, some also regularly sprinkle diatomaceous earth through their yard on a regular basis to keep any fleas out of the backyard.
3. Wash your pet’s bedding regularly
Want more information on Diatomaceous Earth? Check out this article or this article.
We want to hear from you! What are your favorite methods for flea control? What’s your experience with the all-natural flea repellents?
*There are a couple types of diatomaceous earth, you want to make sure you get food grade diatomaceous earth which can be purchased at most pet stores at a local hardware store.
February is Pet Oral Health Month! Clean teeth and gums are an important part of keeping your dog happy and healthy but it’s one area that a lot of pet parents let fall to the side. As daunting of a task as brushing your dog’s teeth may seem, it’s doesn’t have to be! Below are some tips and tricks to help make developing an oral care routine an easy, fun task for you and your dog!
Let’s first start with the supplies:
Don’t have a dog toothbrush? Dog toothbrushes designed for dogs are great but in a pinch you can also use a soft bristled children’s toothbrush, a finger toothbrush or a clean sock wrapped around your finger.
Worried about the chemicals/ingredients of dog toothpaste you find the pet stores? There are multiple DIY dog toothpaste recipes available online all of which contain ingredients that are probably already in your kitchen.
Thinking about using human toothpaste to brush your dog’s teeth? Don’t do it! Never use human toothpaste when brushing your dog’s teeth- it contains ingredients that are harmful to your dog when ingested.
On to the actual teeth brushing:
We’re new to teeth brushing, where do I start? Start off with letting your dog lick the toothpaste off your finger for a couple teeth brushing sessions. Graduate to rubbing their teeth/gums with your finger for a couple sessions. After that let them lick the toothpaste off the toothbrush for a couple sessions. Then you can try and brush a couple teeth working your way up each session to brushing more teeth. If your dog protests at a certain step then review the previous step. We want to make sure that it’s a positive experience so always make sure to end any session with positive reinforcement i.e. treat, toy or attention.
My dog won’t let me brush all his/her teeth! Don’t get discouraged, if your dog is already comfortable with letting you brush only a couple of teeth at a time, do short sessions making sure to end each one with positive reinforcement i.e. toy, treat or attention and work your way up. There’s no rush and no need to force teeth brushing on your dog; take your time and it’ll pay off in the end!
How often should I brush my dog’s teeth? Vets suggest daily brushing of dog’s teeth but brushing 3-4 times a week will help prevent the buildup of plaque.
Are there certain areas to focus on when brushing the teeth? Yes! Make sure to get the canine’s and the upper back molars where food tends to get caught.
Lastly, the entire oral care routine:
Do I have to do more to maintain good oral health for my dog? Yes, in conjunction to regular teeth brushing you also want to get a veterinarian to checkout your dog’s teeth. Some dogs even with regular teeth brushing will need a professional teeth cleaning to remove built up plaque. There are also more you can do at home to aid in good oral health, see question below.
What else can I do at home to maintain good oral health for my dog? In addition to regular teeth brushing, you can feed supplements (check out your local pet store for options) or provide treats/chews that help reduce plaque buildup. When purchasing chews and toys make sure to take into account the size of your dog and how active of chewer they are. Not sure which one to get your dog? Ask your local pet store and they’ll be able to give you the best toys for your dog.
Lastly and most important, make sure whatever your oral care routine includes, to make it a positive experience for your dog! Incorporate toys, treats and playtime as rewards and it’ll make developing as well as maintaining an oral care routine a breeze!
Still have questions about dog oral health? Leave your comments below!