How to Recognize Signs of Cancer in Your Pet

Posted by: LaVonne Wilson | November 19, 2018 | Posted in Dog Behavior, Dog Health

You know about the signs of cancer your doctor tells you to watch out for, but do you know the signs to watch for in your pets? Cancer is just as common in cats and dogs as it is humans. Unfortunately, our pets can’t tell us how they’re feeling, so we as pet owners have to be observant. Here are some signs to lookout for:


• Lumps, tumors, or unusual growths: A lump isn’t automatically a cause for alarm because tumors aren’t always cancerous. However, a veterinarian should check any lump you find on your pet to ensure it’s not cancer. You can perform a monthly “lump check” to keep track of any changes.

• Weight loss/appetite change: This is one of the first signs that is important to pay attention to. If there is no change in diet or food, but your pet’s eating behavior has changed, and they aren’t eating their food, have them checked out by your vet. Weight loss can indicate a possible tumor in the stomach.

• New behaviors: Cancer can cause changes in your pet’s behavior, such as coughing or heavy breathing, lethargy, and the like. If you notice your pet’s personality change, take precaution and visit your vet. You don’t want to let something go unnoticed or progress too far before action is taken.


Again, early detection is extremely important. While there is no reason to be paranoid, be sure to stay informed, keep your eyes open, pet your dog and cat all over to check for bumps, and see your family veterinarian regularly for checkups. If you have any questions, call Central Bark today for more information!

Tips for Keeping Your Dog Healthy

Posted by: LaVonne Wilson | September 21, 2018 | Posted in Dog Behavior, Dog Health

All pet parents want to keep their furry family members healthy. You may not have complete control over certain health illnesses, but by following these tips below, you can help ensure the long-term health and happiness of your dog.



  • Expert Veterinary Care: It’s crucial to bring your pet to a high-quality veterinarian because this sets the foundation of your dog’s overall health. Routine wellness checkups should be performed by your vet at least once a year. Senior dogs and puppies should visit a vet even more frequently. Routine visits to your vet allow them to closely monitor changes before your dog’s health gets out of your control. Since dogs age much quicker than humans, many subtle changes can develop over a six to twelve month time period.
  • Proper Nutrition: A balanced diet is fundamental in keeping your dog healthy. Like people, diet has a direct effect on your dog’s skin, coat, weight, and energy level. Be sure to research the ingredients of dog food before you buy it, or learn how to make a homemade diet!
  • Consistent Exercise: If you’re feeding your dog a healthy diet, they should have plenty of energy. However, if that energy cannot be released with exercise, your dog might release pent up energy on your furniture, items, or carpet. In general, dogs need at least 1-2 hours of exercise per day, and if you don’t have the time to bring your dog on a walk – consider dog daycare! Here at Central Bark, we’ll provide the proper level of exercise needed for a happy and healthy pooch.


Prevention is the greatest cure, so be sure to follow the tips above to guarantee your dog lives happily and healthily. If you have any questions, you can always give us a call or come in and speak to one of our trained professionals!

Is Your Dog Getting Enough Exercise?

Posted by: LaVonne Wilson | September 17, 2018 | Posted in Dog Behavior, Dog Daycare, Dog Health

Just like us, dogs need regular exercise to keep them happy and healthy. How much exercise your dog needs can depend on breed, age, size, and more. Some dogs are fine with a daily walk, but others need more vigorous activity. Here are three common signs that your dog may not be getting enough exercise:


• Weight Gain: Weight gain is one of the most obvious signs that your dog needs more exercise. If you notice your dog has gained a few pounds, you might want to consider increasing their amount of physical activity every day. It’s also important to take into consideration your dog’s diet to be sure you’re not over feeding either.
• Destructive Behavior: If your dog starts destroying items in your home, or is acting out of character, it may be a sign that they need more physical activity. Specific behaviors to watch out for are chewing on shoes or furniture, getting into the trash, and increased aggression towards other pets and people.
• Hyperactivity: If your dog gets over-excited when you take out his leash or when you’re about to head out the door, it may be a sign that he is restless and needs more physical activity. Excessive leash pulling is also a sign that your dog needs to burn more energy, so be aware of these signs!

Since our dogs spend a lot of their time in the house, it’s up to us to make sure they’re getting the daily exercise and play they need to stay healthy. Exercise has many benefits which include:

• Keeping your dog healthy and fit
• Controlling your dog’s weight
• Reducing behavior problems
• Keeping your dog happy
• Reducing digestive issues

You can make sure your dog is getting all the exercise he needs by bringing him to Central Bark! Your dog is certain to have a fun-filled day of activity playing, chasing, tugging or just hanging out with their pals, dogs of all ages will feel right at home in our huge backyard. Contact us today to book your dog’s next visit!

Cookouts, Food, and Pet Safety

Posted by: LaVonne Wilson | July 26, 2018 | Posted in Dog Behavior, Dog Health

Summer feels like it’s flying by! It’s a great time to sit back, relax, and get outdoors to enjoy cookouts with family, friends – and pets! While we’re outside enjoying the marvelous weather and our favorite summer foods, it’s important to keep in mind that a lot of our tasty treats aren’t healthy for our furry friends and can pose serious health risks. Even simple ingredients, like onions or guacamole, can be dangerous to our pets’ health. Before you fire up the grill, here are some tips for ensuring a successful and safe cookout with your dog:

— Don’t give your dog too many scraps: It’s easy to fall victim to those puppy-dog eyes, but it’s important to be sure you’re not giving your dog too many “treats” during your cookout. Not only can it upset your dog’s stomach, but it’s possible for your dog to choke on certain scraps like bone-in chicken wings.

— Pay attention to your dog: Pay attention to your dog’s behavior to ensure they aren’t getting too tired, hot, or over-excited during the barbecue. With a lot of people around, your dog can become antsy or aggressive, so you may want to consider bringing them inside for a while. While your dog is outside, be sure to check that he or she has enough water – especially during a hot sunny day.

— Keep the grill away from pets: Be sure your dog is far away from the grill at all times, especially when guests are playing with him or her. One misstep can seriously injury the dog, your guest, or both.

If you have any questions at all, feel free to give us a call or come in and speak to one of our trained professionals!

Are Your Yard and Garden Toxic to Your Dog?

Posted by: Pack Leader | April 20, 2016 | Posted in Dog Health

 

 

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.

Plants Toxic to DogsPlants Toxic to Dogs

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:

Buttercup
Calla Lily
Chrysanthemum
Daffodil
Daisy
English Ivy
Gardenia
Geranium
Heavenly Bamboo
Hyacinth
Hydrangea
Lavender
Lily of the Valley
Peony
Pothos
Rhododendron (Azalea)
Sweet Pea
Tulip

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)
Fig
Garlic
Mint
Onion
Oregano
Parsley
Rhubarb
Sweet Potato Vine
Tomato Plant

*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.

Why Daycare Rocks for Puppies!

Posted by: Pack Leader | March 10, 2016 | Posted in Dog Daycare

 Puppy in Daycare Picture

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.

Puppy in Daycare Picture

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.

Puppy in Daycare Picture

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!

7.Freedom!

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?

 

Senior Dogs Will Steal Your Heart & This Is Why…

Posted by: Pack Leader | November 4, 2015 | Posted in Dog Behavior

_MG_5731November is National Senior Pet Month! If you’re looking to add another family member, adding a senior dog is a great option. Dogs graduate into the “senior” age group after 7 years old so don’t think that just because they are senior that they don’t have any life left in them. Below are some reasons as to why senior dogs rock!

 

 

1.) Senior dogs are not like onions… meaning you’re unlikely to get surprises in their behavior. As dogs socially mature they undergo behavior changes which as a new dog owner, these can be exciting or unwelcomed changes. However, a senior dog has already gracefully matured into themselves so no worries about sudden personality changes.

 

 

2.) Despite the popular saying, you can indeed teach an old dog new tricks! Senior dogs generally have some basic obedience under their belt so there’s less work you have to do in order to get a well behaved dog.

1640

 

3.) Netflix & Chill? Senior dogs are down for some good napping and lounging. Unlike their younger counterparts they need less exercise and are very happy spending quality time with you around the house. (Less exercise does not mean no exercise though! Moderate exercise will keep them happy & healthy).

1660

 

4.) Save the shoes & carpet. Another benefit of senior dogs is they are already potty-trained and have gone through their chewing phase so your carpet and shoes are spared from the regular puppy potty accidents and puppy teething phase.5.) Save money on the puppysitter. Senior dogs don’t need 24/7 supervising like puppies do. When you are adopting a senior dog you’re getting a mature dog that can be left alone for a whole day at work or if you want to go out for a couple hours on the weekend.

1639

 

 

Lastly, you will be saving a life. Senior dogs are not pet rejects and deserve a loving home just as much as the younger dogs in shelters but many times they are overlooked for the stereotype of being an “old dog”. Senior dogs don’t mean they are can’t still romp around and be a fantastic pet. Next time you’re looking to add a new family member consider getting a senior pet, they just might steal your heart.

It’s Pet Wellness Month, Let’s Talk Allergies & Dogs

Posted by: Pack Leader | October 11, 2015 | Posted in Dog Health

Bella Park 1It’s Pet Wellness Month! This month is focused on educating pet owners on the importance of annual wellness checks and preventing disease. Our pet’s health is important and we’re responsible for keeping them healthy all year long.  Unfortunately for our pets, allergies are not just limited to us. Our four-legged pups are susceptible to common allergies as well, so here are some of the most common allergies for dogs:

Environmental

Seasonal allergies: Just like human seasonal allergies, dogs are vulnerable to seasonal pollen allergies. These allergies usually present a bit differently in our four-legged friend than with us though.

Other allergens: This category is vague because almost anything can be an allergen; it can vary from your dog being allergic to specific plants, mold, dander, prescription drugs, dust mites, etc. There is such a wide variety of allergens that if your pet is experiencing allergy symptoms is it beneficial to discuss it with your veterinarian.

 

Food

Grain based

Protein

Food based allergies are very common in dogs but sometimes hard to pin down to exactly what ingredient is causing the allergy symptom. There are multiple low-ingredient dog food brands on the market that allow you to try different protein and grain sources. Testing different ingredients of dog food is a long process since results can take weeks or months to present themselves but it’s worth it in the long run for a healthy pup!

Insect Bites

Bee stings

Flea bites

Spider and other insect bites

These allergies can come out of the blue and you probably won’t know until your pup experiences bites or stings and see the allergic reaction. The severity of the allergic reaction can vary just like it does in humans from mild to severe.

Common Allergy Symptoms:

Increased itching

Sneezing

Increased licking

Inflammation/Swelling

Increased licking of paws/swollen paws

Itchy, watery eyes

Runny nose

Skin rashes (Red, itchy or scabed patches of skin)

Solutions?Dog Allergy Blog

Many mild allergies can be treated with some benadryl or hydrocortisone cream but severe allergies may require more intense treatments. Of course food or drug allergies once diagnosed can easily be fixed with avoiding the allergy causing ingredient in your dog’s diet. If your dog is presenting with symptoms of allergies, it is best to discuss this with your vet; treatments vary greatly depending on the severity of your dog’s allergies and the type of allergy.

We want to hear from you! Do you have a dog that has an allergy? How’d you narrow down your dog’s allergy? Do you have a non-traditional method for keeping your dog’s allergy under control?

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/pic/article.cfm?siteid=12&acatid=169&aid=75