Saturday, June 03, 2006

Chillin' Out: Keeping Your Dog Cool in Hot Weather

Sunny summer days seem to incite all sorts of fun activities with your dog: from playing fetch in the park to frisbee on the beach. Unfortunately, as temperatures soar, the hot weather also brings with it some very specific hazards such as sunburn, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Good news, these threats to your pooch are preventable.

Protecting Your Dog from Sunburn

Just like humans, dogs can be burned by the sun, especially the nose, tips of the ears and around the lip area. Commonsense dictates that you keep your dog in the shade during the hours when the sun's rays are most intense - usually between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. However, if you need to be outside during these times, it's okay to apply sun-block to your dog's nose and the exposed skin on the ears. It's a little risky to apply sun-block around the lips so instead just keep a close watch and make sure that the area doesn't get too pink. If you notice that any portion of your dog's skin is reddened or blistered, contact your veterinarian right away.

Protecting Your Dog from Heat Exhaustion or Heat Stroke

Leaving a dog in a parked car during summer weather is the leading cause of heat stroke. Dogs can also suffer heat exhaustion or heat stroke if they exercise too heavily on a hot, humid day or, if they live outdoors and don't have shelter from the sun. Dogs are also susceptible if they are overweight or suffer from lung or heart ailments. Older dogs are less tolerant of heat and may succumb to heat strokes more readily than younger dogs.

A few simple actions on your part can help protect your dog from heat exhaustion and heat stroke:

Don't take your dog with you on errands if you need to leave her in the car. However, if you're traveling with your dog and must make a stop, even for the shortest period of time, consider leaving the air conditioner on.

If you're accustomed to taking your dog with you when power-walking, jogging or cycling, don't push her on exceptionally hot days. If she falls behind, let her take a break.

For dogs who live outside, make sure to provide "all-day shade" such as a ventilated doghouse, large beach umbrella or overhang that will remain shaded even when the sun shifts throughout the day.

Keep older dogs and those with lung or heart conditions inside your home on hot days. If you don't have air conditioning, keep a fan running.

Avoid any situations that force your dog to stand on sun-baked surfaces such as cement sidewalks, a truck bed or beach sand. The extreme heat can cause blisters on her pads. If you simply must walk your dog in the heat of the day, tread on grassy areas as much as possible.

Water, Water, Water!

And last but not you, your dog needs to hydrate frequently so be sure to provide unlimited access to cool, clean refreshing drinking water.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Fencing The Kennel

Fencing the Kennel

Eight-year-old Rusty McClean was very worried. Every time he played ball in the backyard, he would end up hurting tiny Dufus. Dufus is a Dachshund. He keeps to himself most of the time. He loves to watch Rusty play ball. Of late though he's noticed that Rusty's aim has gotten a little better. And the target seems to him - Dufus! Rusty realizes that Dufus loves to see him play ball. So he takes the problem to his mother.

She is quick enough to understand that probably Dufus needs a kennel fence. She asks Rusty to find out about the types of kennel fences available and they could get one for Dufus. Rusty's Research Rusty realizes that though a fence is a good idea it should not smother Dufus' freedom nor give him a sense of being caged. Dufus has been used to freedom and may feel depressed at being caged! The difference, Rusty realized to not make him feel caged. Types of Kennel Fences

A kennel fence could be made of a steel mesh with small rectangles or wide rectangles. Each could be used based on the space available, the kind of dog, and the behavior of the dog. Since Dufus is a small dog it would help if the mesh has wide rectangles. For larger dogs, a steel mesh with smaller rectangles not just allows for visibility but also sturdy support. Tips for Safety Here are a few safety tips you should remember if you choose to put a kennel fence: 1) Rust can cause a lot of problem to not just the fence, your dog, but to you too.

It would be a good idea to spray some rust-proof material on the fence. Better still these days you get fences with rust-proof finishes. 2) Take care of the edges of the fences. Dogs have a habit at nibbling at things if they are bored. Take care that the edges are blunted out and are not sharp. You could also put weather-proof tape around the edges to protect your dogs. 3) Ground the fence firmly.

Sometimes in anxiety your dog is likely to rip or pull at some fastenings. Take care that all fastenings are firmly grounded. 4) To clean the kennel fence try not to use the material that could affect the galvanized material of the fence. Finally, Rusty got his wish and so did Dufus.

Now, while Rusty plays… Dufus keeps a good eye on him without getting hurt at all.

The First log

Hey Everybody. Here is my first blog comment. I want to write about pond kits. They are the greatest thing in the world. If you've ever tried to build a pond before, you'll know exactly what I mean.