Tips For Car Rides With Dogs

There is nothing better than a good car ride with your pups. If the windows are down things start to feel like a hairball tornado, but you can see the happiness all over their face. They’re just happy to be traveling with you.

Most dogs love being asked if they’re ready to go for a ride. If you had the opportunity to check out our article about teaching your dog tricks, then you learned about word association. Some of the most common phrases for car rides are ‘Wanna go for a ride?’ and ‘Let’s go bye-bye’! Stick to whichever phrase works best for you, and you’ll be able to easily communicate with your dog. Do you want your dog to use the bathroom before you get in the car? Use your phrase with the command, and they’ll be more inclined to use the bathroom, so they get the “treat” of going for the ride.

Here at DoggyCo, we think taking car rides with your dogs is a great way to spend time with them as well as work on their training. There are so many situations that require you to transport your dog, so you need to prepare them for those experiences. You want your dog to make positive associations with car rides, so make sure to take them places other than the vet! Are you leaving the house to run through the drive-thru? Grab your pup! Want to get out of the house with your dog? Head to the dog park!

Wherever you’re heading, make sure that your dog is going to be safe during your trip. If you’re driving in a pick-up truck on main roads, do not have your dog in the bed of the truck. While we understand that dogs love to feel the wind, a car accident with your dog in the bed of a truck can prove to be fatal. We want you to keep your furry friend safe. If your dog is riding in the back of your truck, do not put them on a long leash. Leashing is a standard safety measure, but if your dog is able to jump out of the truck, the leash can prove to be fatal. Your dog is much safer inside your car.

An excellent way to ensure your pup’s safety during your car ride is to have them in an appropriately sized kennel. You don’t want your dog jumping over the car seats and endangering either of you while you’re travelling! The crate is a safe place for your dog to rest while you’re on your trip. Always place the kennel inside your vehicle. Placing the kennel in a closed trunk, or on a luggage rack is EXTREMELY dangerous. Secure the crate in the trunk of an SUV, or the backseat of your car so your dog has access to the air conditioning and safety of the inside of your vehicle.

We hate to talk about bad things happening, but we want our dog owners to be well informed. Be conscious about where your doggy is in your car before you leave your home. We all want the best for our furry friends! Where are you going to take your dog next?!

Working Dog Breeds

Looking to add a puppy to your life? You’ve come to the right place! DoggyCo connects you with reputable breeders, so you can find the perfect puppy for your family. While you’re scrolling through the available puppies, you may be asking yourself what breed is right for your family… If one of the pups that you have your eye on is a working dog breed, we think there are a few things you should know.

What are working dog breeds?
If you’re unfamiliar with the phrase working dog, you actually know more than you think! A working dog breed is one that was bred to complete specific tasks. These breeds are often task driven and aim to please. They can make wonderful pets, so don’t be alarmed! A few of the most common working dog breeds are Shepherds, Border Collies, and Mastiffs. As you can tell, most working dogs are large breed pups.

The Shepherd Breeds
We previously wrote an article on German Shepherds, and we simply can’t get enough of them! Shepherds make up a large group of working dogs. German, Anatolian, and Dutch Shepherds are all amazing guardian dogs. In ancient times, Anatolian Shepherds were bred to protect farm animals. More recently, German Shepherds have worked along the front lines protecting their human counterparts as military and police working dogs.

Siberian Husky
The well-known Alaskan sled pulling breed, these dogs are extremely high-energy. Siberian huskies are popular among dog owners for their convenient medium size and outgoing nature. They make great family pets but get ready to have someone who talks back! Huskies are a talkative breed that often gets along with other dogs as well as people. They are considerably smaller than the other two working dog breeds we’re mentioning here, but ready to work just as hard!

Mastiffs
Similar to Shepherds, there are multiple types of Mastiffs. No matter the name, Mastiffs are an extremely large breed of dog. They’re wonderful protectors for their intimidating and extra-large stature. You can expect Mastiffs to stand on average around two feet tall and weigh more than 100-pounds.

As a working dog breed owner, you have to be ready to be a stern leader. Your dog needs to view you as a compassionate, but dominant head of control. Be clear with your dog what you need them to do, and they will commit their heart and soul to doing it. Working dog breeds can just as easily be gentle with their family, so don’t worry that your dog will only be kind to you. Like any dog breed, establish boundaries and train your dog young, and stay active with your training.

Are you convinced that a working dog breed is exactly what your family needs? Check out our breed comparison tool to help you narrow down your search. We would love to connect you with one of our top-notch breeders to help you bring home a healthy new puppy!

Safely Socializing Your Dog With Other Pups

Looking to start socializing your new dog? We are so happy to hear that! By nature, your pup
will be very interested in other animals. You want them to be! There are a number of ways for
you to start socializing your dog with other pups and encouraging safe interactions.

When to start puppy socialization
Don’t take your dog on outings where they will be interacting with other pups before they have
all of their shots. The final round of puppy shots happens when they are about 16 weeks old.
Included in the final round is their rabies vaccination, which is very important. You don’t want
your dog to be exposed to any sickness that they have yet to be vaccinated for. Avoid places
like off-leash dog parks until your pup has had their shots.

Instead of the dog park, start off by socializing your dog with other pups in the family. Make sure
these pups are vetted and up to date on their shots. If you know these dogs are safe, then we
encourage monitored socialization!

Where to socialize your pup
Wherever you decide to socialize your pup, you want to make sure it is a safe area.
Socialization zones are best as fenced in areas. You want as many people in the area as there
are dogs. It is unsafe to socialize your dog in an area like a public park that is not fenced. Your
dog can easily get away from you, and other animals can easily make their way to your dog. To
air on the side of caution, stick to areas like fenced in yards or inside a room.

Monitored socialization
There is a safe way to start socializing your dog, and that is monitored socialization. Don’t ever
leave your dog alone with an animal they’ve never interacted with before. Fear can present itself
by way of aggression, and you want your puppy to be safe.

Things to avoid when socializing your dog
When introducing animals for the first time, it is absolutely recommended to have both dogs on
a leash. The leash gives both owners the control to guide their dog and prevent them from
jumping on the other dog. When they are on a leash, try taking the dogs for a walk to minimize
some of the meet and greet pressure.

Leashes are NOT encouraged when socialization becomes a playdate. It is incredibly
dangerous for dogs to play on leash. Not only can leashes become tangled with each other, but
they can also get caught on sticks, other pups, and anything else you can think of! If you’re
worried about not being able to catch your dog after removing their leash, then check out our
article on teaching your dog good manners.

Socializing your dog is important, but it is even more important for you to do it in a safe manner!
Remember, start slow, socialize in an enclosed area, and remove leashes when play time
begins. Every breed has a different temperament. Some breeds are prone to being very friendly

and some naturally take more time to bond with outside family members. Explore breeds that
may be right for you by using our puppy finder. If you have any questions about socializing your
puppy, then feel free to contact us, or leave a comment below.

Spending Quality Time With Your Dog

It might sound a little redundant to say, but you should be spending quality time with your dog. If
you’re working from home, then you have even more opportunities to indulge in personal time
with your four-legged friends. Don’t let them down!

Here at DoggyCo, we strive to educate all animal owners. This week, we are talking about your
dog’s mental health. You heard that right, mental health! While some dogs experience mental
health issues that are unrelated to their owners, dogs need our help to keep their mind’s
healthy. Spending quality time with your dog is a great way to positively impact your pup’s
mental health.

Examples of quality time
– Playing fetch at the park
– Jogging around the neighborhood with your dog
– Taking your dog on a car ride to pick up fast-food
– Hanging out at the dog park
– Teaching your dog new commands
– Belly rubs on the couch

Things that aren’t quality time
– Leaving your dog in their cage when you’re home
– Locking your dog outside
– Expecting your dogs to always self-entertain
– Making your dog live in their cage
– Shooing your dog away when they try to play with you

Dogs get lonely too! They’re called man’s best friend for a reason. Dogs can suffer from a
number of mental health issues related to loneliness. It’s true, your dog can have anxiety and
depression.

Depression in dogs
A sign of depression in your dog can be persistent laziness. Is Fido constantly curled up in their
bed, uninterested in anything other than sleeping? Your dog might be depressed! Encourage
them to play by introducing a new toy or treat. Refusing food is another sign of depression, so
try to be patient with your pup. Offer them a ‘high value’ treat like boiled chicken, or canned
pumpkin.

Anxiety in dogs
Do you think that your dog might have anxiety? If your pup frequently shakes or shutters in
response to things, then they may be suffering from anxiety. Another sign of anxiety in dogs is
destructive behavior. Anxiety commonly presents itself in dogs as separation anxiety. It may be
best for you to crate train your dog when you leave your home, to prevent them from
accidentally injuring themselves. If you suspect that you’re going to be gone for a long period of

time, then check into a dog walker. Breaking up the amount of time that your dog has to spend
alone will help them learn to cope with your absence.

If you feel like your pup is suffering from a mental health issue, then it is best to consult your
veterinarian. While there are medications on the market that are dog safe and can help your pup
with their anxieties, we always recommend that you also take a natural approach to their
healthcare.

Poor mental health can be addressed by spending more quality time with your dog. Be the best
owner that you can be, and you will see that your dog is much happier! Do you think you have
what it takes to make a loving and committed dog owner? Discover available puppies for
adoption by using our puppy finder.

How to Potty Train a Puppy

Welcome to the first training hurdle of puppyhood! Potty training is a must-have life skill
for your pup. You need a clean environment in your home, and so does your dog. Potty
training is sanitary for the both of you!

Potty training in steps
Step one for potty training is consistency. We told you in our article about reward style
training that every pup has their own timeline. Don’t get frustrated if your pup is still
having accidents after a few days. This is a new process for them, they’re training their
bladder as well! Put your pup on a schedule and try to stick to it. Let them out every few
hours to prevent accidents inside.

Step two for potty training is taking preventative measures. Don’t forget to let your
puppy out right before you leave the house. It doesn’t matter if you just let them out
thirty minutes before, they’ll probably go again. Give them the opportunity to go and
encourage the behavior. If you leave your home, then put your pup in their kennel. Dogs
are less likely to use the bathroom in an area that they feel like is their safe space.
Between 10 to 20 minutes after your puppy eats, take them outside. If you’re going to
be gone from your home for long hours, then invest in a dog walker! Your timecommitment to your pup is imperative.

Step three for potty training is to slowly increase the time between potty breaks. Don’t
be afraid to take a step back, either! Start with 60 to 90 minutes between potty breaks.
Set a timer if you need to. Potty breaks need to continue at night during the beginning of
the process to prevent accidents.

The final step to potty training is to watch for cues. Sniffing around, pawing at the door,
whimpering, and squatting can all be signs that your pup needs a potty break!
Unfortunately, they just can’t tell us when they need to go outside. Praise them for their
cues and start associating a word or short phrase with the process. “Let’s go out”, “Time
to potty”, and “Time to go outside” are all phrases we recommend! You want to make
sure your phrase is clear and won’t be confused with other activities.

Potty training reminders
Give your puppy grace. They’re new to the process. If you come home and your puppy
had an accident, then let that serve as a reminder for yourself as well! Maybe your little
one isn’t ready to go that long without a bathroom break. We do not encourage
spanking, nor do we encourage kenneling as punishment. Putting your pup in their
kennel as punishment teaches them to fear their kennel– you don’t want that to happen!

You know from reading our article about successful crate training that their kennel is
their sanctuary, and they should be praised for going in there, not punished.

If you’ve followed all of our steps on how to potty train a puppy, and you are still
cleaning up frequent accidents, then it may be time to take a trip to the vet. Your pup
may be suffering from a urinary tract infection or have a problem with their bladder. We
recommend consulting a veterinarian if you believe your puppy is suffering from one of
those ailments.

Leave us a comment if you have any tips or tricks for potty training!

Reward Style Puppy Potty Training Tips

Unfortunately, cute little Fido wasn’t born knowing where he needed to use the bathroom. He
gets the feeling, and he goes! Potty training can be frustrating when you feel like your puppy just
won’t learn, so we are bringing you the most effective puppy potty training tips!

Common potty training questions:
– Is my puppy too young to potty training? The short answer, no! If you found your forever
friend through DoggyCo, then your baby is older than 8 weeks old. We recommend that
you start potty training right away.
– How long does it take to potty train? There is not a guaranteed potty training timeline.
We can say; however, that our methods will result in your pup being potty trained more
quickly.
– Is one type of reward style training the best? All reward style training is beneficial. We
recommend trying them all to figure out what works best for your family.

Here at DoggyCo, we advocate for reward style training methods. We have found that the most
effective reward method is to mix all of them. Dogs have different personalities, just like people!
Changing up the style of reward that you use will help keep your pup’s attention and validate
that what they’re doing is exactly what you want!

Potty training your puppy will be similar to potty training a child in a few ways: it will take
patience, their timeline will be individual, and you’ll lose a little bit of sleep! How can you survive
it? Stay focused on the end goal and stick to our reward style puppy potty training tips. You will
be so proud of the new skill that your pup has learned!

Three common reward styles are giving treats, giving praise, or giving physical attention. Giving
treats is a wonderful way to effectively potty train your pup. Most dogs are food motivated. If you
find that your pup is uninterested, then opt for a different kind of treat. If you don’t see results
after trying a few different brands of treats, then switch to giving praise or physical attention.
Everyone loves to be praised, including puppies! Use an excited tone and clap for your pup
when they go to the bathroom outside. You will immediately see an overjoyed reaction for them
that will come with a lot of tail wagging! When they make their way back to you after going to the
bathroom outside, reach down and love on them. Pat them on the head and tell them what a
good job they did. The physical attention along with the vocal praise will let your puppy know
they’re doing a great job.

These reward style puppy potty training tips should have you well on your way to potty training
your pup! Dogs live to please their humans. Check back often because we love to share
information to help you raise the best mannered pup on the block.

Training your puppy will not only make your life easier, but it will make your dog feel like they
have a job to do! You may be surprised to hear it, but a good mental health will improve your

dog’s life. If you’re interested in more tips for living a happy life with your new four-legged family
member, then feel free to check out our other articles!

Raising a People Friendly Puppy

There is nothing better than stopping to pet a dog and getting all the sweet kisses. Sadly, not all
dogs are comfortable with you invading their personal space. Proper training from puppyhood
will encourage your dog to be people friendly!

Starting early
We absolutely encourage socialization to start very early on. Part of your time commitment to your dog is showing them affection. Pick your puppy up. When you interact with your dog, be
sure to pat them in different places. Touch their feet, rub their back, pat their head, rub their
belly. You want them to be comfortable with being petted in different places. Doing things like
touching their feet will also make it easier when it comes time to clip their toenails!

When appropriate, allow your children to socialize with your dog. Getting your kids involved in pet care builds a bond between them and your pup and increases trust. Your kids and your dog
need to know the boundaries to the interactions. Teach them not to do things like pull your dog’s
tail, grab their ears, or mess with their nose. Those are incredibly sensitive areas and can make
your dog fearful of children. Do not allow your children to attempt to ride your dog. That can
result in severe injury for both of them. Only encourage safe interactions between your children
and pets.

Change the scenery
For your puppy to be people friendly, even with strangers, you have to expose your puppy to
people in different situations. Take your dog on walks through your neighborhood. Allow your
neighbors to interact with your pup. These interactions are likely to be frequent, and your dog
will begin to associate these people and the way they smell as friends! Visit dog friendly
restaurants with your pup. The noise and activity levels will be higher, but it will teach your dog
to treat the situation as an opportunity for lots of love versus being high stress.

Being consistent
Trust takes time! If you are adamant about socializing your pup in new spaces regularly, then
you will absolutely see that you are raising a people friendly puppy. Encourage your pup to take
their time when meeting new people. Allow them to sniff the stranger and praise them for doing
so. A good way to reward them for giving kisses and allowing strangers to pet them is to carry
treats on your walk. Allow the stranger to give your pup the treat to further prove to your pup
that these interactions with new people are a good thing.

Don’t forget the boundaries
Remember, interactions with people require good manners! You want to raise a people friendly
dog, but you don’t want to encourage jumping. Don’t allow your pup to drag you with the leash
when they see someone new. Remind your pup to sit before you allow someone to pet them.
They might be a small puppy now, but you would feel terrible if your dog ever jumped on a
stranger and knocked them down. Boundaries will also prevent your pup from bombarding
someone who is fearful of animals. Manners are always beneficial for everyone involved.

Is your dog a total people person? Where is your favorite place to take them for all the love and
affection? As always, feel free to drop your tips for raising a people friendly puppy in the
comments!

Hypoallergenic Dog Breeds

Do you have allergies to pet dander that are holding you back from bringing home a furry
friend? We have the answer! There are a number of hypoallergenic dog breeds that are perfect
for allergy-prone people.
 
How do I know if I’m allergic to dogs?
There are a few signs and symptoms that can lead you to believe that you’re allergic to pups.
Some signs will mimic common allergies like itchy eyes, sneezing, and coughing. To know for
sure whether or not you’re allergic to dogs, you can get an allergy test done by your primary
care physician.
 
It is important to spend time interacting with dogs before you get your own, so you have a better
understanding of what dog breed would be suitable for your family and lifestyle. Do you have
the time to vacuum your house often? Are you okay with keeping a lint roller in your car? Do
your eyes feel itchy after playing with a puppy?

What are hypoallergenic breeds?
For starters- there is no such thing as a dog breed that is 100% hypoallergenic. Typically, when
people are allergic to dogs, they are allergic to dander that is on dog hair. Breeds that shed less
have less dander, but there is still dander on the hair. Hairless dogs are less likely to have skin
that adheres to dander, but it is still possible. 

Breeds that are considered hypoallergenic
If you believe that dander associated with dog hair is upsetting your allergies, then consider one
of the following hypoallergenic dog breeds. Contrary to popular belief, hypoallergenic breeds
come in all shapes and sizes!

  • Poodles: There are a range of sizes for this breed of dog depending on if they’re bred to
    be teacup or standard sized poodles.
  • Labradoodles: This breed is a cross between poodles and Labradors. This is a medium
    to large breed dog.
  • Maltese: A small breed dog.
  • Yorkshire Terrier: A small breed dog.
  • Xoloitzcuintle: A medium breed dog.
  • Irish Water Spaniel: A medium breed dog.
  • American Hairless Terrier: A medium dog breed.
  • Chinese Crested: A small breed dog.
    • Breeds that shed a lot
      Shedding pups can increase allergens in your home. There are a few breeds that have an
      abundance of shedding and would cause your allergies to spike! Some long-haired dogs can be
      shaved, or have their hair cut down to reduce shedding… But with these breeds you get what
      you get!

    • German Shepherd
    • Chow Chow
    • Alaskan Malamute
    • Welsh Corgi
    • Husky
    • Great Pyrenees
    • Australian Shepherd
    • Bernese Mountain Dog
      • What kind of pup do you have in mind? Do you feel like a breed with less shedding would be
        better suited for your lifestyle or family needs, or are you welcoming all of the hair?

        For even more information about these breeds, make sure to check out the breed comparison feature that DoggyCo has available!

Getting Your Kids Involved in Pet Care

Getting your kids involved in pet care is an excellent way to instill responsibilities,
compassion, and work ethic. Animals are a great family addition to those that are whole-
heartedly involved in their care and upkeep.

 

Things to consider before assigning responsibilities
Before you start adding puppy-related responsibilities to the chore chart, you need to
consider your puppy's temperament. 

  • Does your dog have food aggression?
  •  

  • Have you practiced basic food manners with your dog like sitting and waiting?
  • Is your child old enough to share a hand in taking care of the dog, or do they
    need your help?
  • Will your child need to be supervised during their pup-related chore?

 

You have to make sure that your child, as well as your family pet, will be safe at all
times. If you’re worried that getting your kids involved in pet care could result in an
accident, then it is much better to be safe than sorry! Showing your children how you
actively take care of the family pet is still teaching them how to be responsible,
compassionate, and to have a good work ethic!

 
Pet care your kids can help with
If you do feel like your children can be actively involved with pet care, wonderful! Here
are a few different chores for your kids. The following chores are all taking a hands-on
approach to pet care.

  • Giving treats: Make sure that your puppy is practicing their manners! Sitting
    before a treat and taking the treat easily are important.
  •  

  • Refilling food and water bowls: This chore can be done with the dog in the room,
    or while your dog is outside on a potty break!
  • Overseeing potty breaks: This chore is best if your yard is fenced in. An adult
    should always be present if your dog needs to be walked on a leash outside of a
    fenced area.
  • Play time: Pull out all of the toys. Your dog needs to be active, and your kids
    need to burn off energy!

 

Being safe rather than sorry doesn’t mean your children can’t help out! It simply means
that they need to take a hands-off approach. Here are a few chores that your children
can help with that won’t put them in harm’s way.

  • Cleaning bowls: Your dog’s food and water bowls need to be cleaned on a
    regular basis to avoid buildup of algae and bacteria. Your kids can absolutely
    help do the dog’s dishes!
  • Pick up toys: At the end of the day your children can help you tidy up the house
    by putting away all of the dog’s toys.

 

If you have children, consider getting your kids involved in pet care because it is an
incredible learning experience. Bringing a dog into a family requires an effort from
everyone! We all know that puppies require a lot of your time, but they are so worth it.

10 Things To Know About German Shepherds

We’ve gathered information from a number of German Shepherd owners to bring you 10
important things to know about owning GSDs.

Looking for a new pup for your family? German Shepherds just might be the breed for you!

1. German Shepherds are incredibly smart. They have a constant mental drive which
makes them a sought out breed for both police and military working dogs.
(Fun fact: A German Shepherd mix was the most decorated dog involved in WWII.)

2. This breed makes for an amazing family pet. Female German Shepherds are incredibly
caring, and males are very attentive.

3. German Shepherds are a large breed of dog. Typically, they stand about two feet in
height. Males weigh between 60 and 80 pounds while females come in between 50 and
70 pounds.
(Fun fact: One of the largest GSDs on record was a male who weighed 130 pounds.)

4. To avoid behavioral problems, German Shepherds need training. Don’t worry, you don’t
have to shell out thousands of dollars for training. You can check out our article on some
of the easiest tricks to teach your pup!
5. GSDs are not hypoallergenic dogs. They shed whether they are long or short haired
versions of the breed.
(Fun fact: There are only two formally recognized variations of the German Shepherd
breed– medium and long coat shepherds.)

6. They don’t require regular grooming. However, German Shepherds have a straight-
haired coat, so they do need to be brushed regularly to maintain a shiny, healthy
appearance. They are not a breed that needs frequent haircuts unless there is matting of
the hair.

7. German Shepherds are a cautious breed. Don’t be frightened if they aren’t immediately
overjoyed to meet new people and animals. They may take a little time to warm up to
new situations because they’re evaluating the circumstance. Their tendency to assess
situations before reacting does not make them a dangerous breed.
(Fun fact: German Shepherds are known to be great guard dogs, but they do not
regularly bark.)

8. To be such a large dog, they are not overeaters. Most adult German Shepherds eat
once or twice a day. They do need large breed dog food to ensure they are getting
enough protein in their diets.

9. Some Shepherds have hip problems. Most hip problems present themselves in mature
dogs. You can lessen the chances of early onset hip issues by regularly exercising your
dog as well as giving them joint supplements.
(Fun fact: Fish oil is an excellent, natural supplement that aids in coat and joint health in
dogs!)

10. Purchase your German Shepherd from a reputable breeder. Overbreeding results in
prominent hip and coat issues. Don’t support backyard breeders. Use DoggyCo to find a
breeder near you.

Are you considering getting a German Shepherd as your next family pet? They’re wonderful
dogs!

We hope this article answered some of your inquiries as to what life is like as a German
Shepherd owner.

For more breed specific inquiries, check out our breed comparison feature here at DoggyCo!

Are you feeding your dog the right food?

With the hundreds of brands of dog food on the market, it can be hard to determine what
is best for your dog. You may be left wondering if the brand really even matters! What you feed
your dog DOES matter!

Ingredients to avoid
Unfortunately, not all dog food is made equal. Some ingredients have been linked to
horrible illnesses like canine heart disease. Foods that are grain free have an increased risk of
causing heart disease. If you feel like your pup has a grain allergy, then you should immediately
consult your veterinarian. Other ingredients to avoid include but are not limited to the following:
food coloring, corn syrup, farmed salmon, and xylitol.

Brands to avoid
Avoid grain free dog foods. As mentioned above, grain free foods have been linked to
canine heart disease. You should also avoid brands that list ‘meat’ as an ingredient. When
unspecified, the term meat refers to the worst leftovers and byproducts. You might think you’re
giving your pup an excellent source of protein, but the meat included is not of high quality.

Choosing from the good dog food brands
Don’t let this article scare you! It is meant to inform you, and help you make the best
decisions for your pup. You should actively research the brand of food that you purchase to
make sure it has not been recalled. The FDA regularly releases articles that name off major dog
food brands for their dangerous ingredients. Your veterinarian can help you pick a dog food that
is best fit for your individual pup’s needs.

Types of dog food
If you’re interested in trying a different brand of dog food, consider asking your vet if they
have any available samples. Vets typically carry high quality samples. If you want to do your
own research, then start by looking up dog foods that are relevant to your pup’s current size. Is
your dog a large breed or small breed? You can also research brands that are specific to your
dog’s age. Is your dog a puppy, adult, or a mature adult? Compare the brands that you have
listed, and ones that fall in both relative categories are worth looking into!

Switching your dog’s food
After reading this article are you deciding that it is time to make a switch? That is
perfectly fine! There are a few things to keep in mind when changing your dog’s food: buy a
small bag first. Your dog may experience an upset stomach when you change their food. Add a
small amount of the new brand with your dog’s current food, and slowly increase the new brand
over the course of a week.

Upset puppy tummies
If your dog experiences an upset stomach, then there are a few things you can try! You can give
them some boiled boneless skinless chicken, pumpkin, and rice to calm their stomach. If their
upset stomach persists, then you should take them to the vet to confirm that there is not an
outside factor that is causing their stomach to be upset. Be patient with your pup and take them
out to the bathroom often. Make sure they’re drinking lots of water to stay hydrated.
If you have the time and the resources, you can skip researching dog foods and feed your pup a
raw meat and cooked vegetable diet at home! Don’t feel bad if you’re unable to do that.

Do your research and try to make the best decision for you and your pup. What you feed your pup
matters!

Tips for Successful Crate Training

One of the best decisions you’ll ever make for your new furry friend is to crate train them.
Before you ever get your pup, you should make sure you pick up a crate that is sized
appropriately for them, so you can begin crate training right away.

The benefits of crate training
Giving your puppy a safe and quiet space to retreat to is imperative. Training your pup to
be comfortable with their crate will give them a place to go when they’re nervous, during potty
training, when you’re leaving your home, or when they want to take a nap.
Crate training should not be used as a punishment! As we stated in one of our previous
articles, positive reinforcement is key to successful training. You don’t want your puppy to come
to fear their safe space.

Choosing a crate
If you’re looking to use your crate for potty training, then it is important that you buy the
correct size for your puppy. The crate needs to be large enough for your puppy to sit, stand, and
lay down, but not large enough for them to walk around in. Appropriately sized spaces are
comfortable without giving them substantial room to play. When the crate is too big, they’re
more likely to use the bathroom in it. The crate isn’t for play time! Your puppy shouldn’t be
spending all of their lives in their crate, so make sure you’re giving them time to exercise and
hang out with your family.

Appropriate crate time
If your puppy is going to spend their lives in their crate, then you should wait until you
have more free time to be a pet owner. Your dog needs exercise and affection just like a child
does. Puppies should only be spending a few hours at a time in their crate, and then they need
to be taken to use the bathroom. The crate will be a new experience for your pup, so expect
them to be nervous at first.

Curving crate anxiety
For a more successful introduction, leave the crate in an area where your puppy can see
you from inside of it. Leave the door to the crate propped open and encourage your puppy to
venture inside. Expect your pup to whine initially. Remember, the crate is a new experience and
new experiences can be scary. When they get used to their crate, they will start going inside on
their own!

Packing your pup’s crate
To get a head start on making the crate comfortable for your pup, put a soft bed and a
toy inside. Consider giving them a small treat every other time they get in their crate willingly.
Speak to your pup in a very happy tone of voice to remind them they’re doing a wonderful thing
by getting in their crate.

Crate training is a process, but there are so many benefits! Get a crate for your furry best friend
and make it their comfortable home.

Puppies and Time Commitments

It’s no secret that puppies require a lot of time. How can you decide whether your family
is ready for a new furry friend?

Basic Time Commitments
– Potty Training
– Skill Training
– Exercise Time
– Grooming

Considering Your Personal Commitments

Do you work? How many hours a week do you work? How long is your commute
to your job? Do you have to travel for work?

If you work a full-time position, then you typically have an 8 hour work day. Add a
30-minute commute and you are now gone for 9 hours a day.

Think about how your bladder would be ready to burst if you held it for that entire
day!

Potty Training

If you are gone full-time for work, then you need to have a doggy sitter pop into
your house to let your puppy outside. Puppies need a strict routine, especially during
their potty training time. Consistency is key to potty training!

Even if you are choosing to crate train your puppy, you can’t expect them to
spend 12 hours a day in their crate. Their crate should be their safe space, and not a
punishment. When a puppy is forced to stay in their crate for so long that they are
consistently using the bathroom where they sleep, then it is no longer their safe space.

Skill Training

Teaching your puppy basic skills is incredibly important. For starters, mental
stimulation is important for dogs. Bad things happen when puppies get bored! Skill
training can help prevent excessive chewing and increase daily naps. Your puppy
should be tired from the amount of time they spend training and playing.

Skill training is important for older dogs too. A dog is never too old to learn a new
trick. Learning is fun for dogs of all ages! Start with skills like sit and stay, and move
towards more complicated tricks.

Exercise Time

Exercising your dog is an excellent way to keep your pup’s bill of health up.
Anxiety is higher in dogs that don’t get enough exercise as well as conditions like
diabetes and excessive weight gain. You don’t need to sit all day, and neither does your
pup.

A quick potty break is not sufficient exercise for a dog. Playing fetch, having a
puppy play-date, going to the dog park, or going on a walk are great ways to exercise
your pup. Exercise should happen on a daily basis.

Grooming

The amount of grooming that your pup requires depends on their breed. Long-
haired dogs typically require more breeding to prevent matting of hair. Some examples
of breeds that need regular grooming are Poodles, Collies, Great Pyreneese.

All breeds require a casual amount of grooming. Over-grooming can have a
negative effect, but grooming once a month is a good idea. Grooming includes bathing,
nail trimming, ear cleaning, and hair trimming. Unless you are a trained groomer, leave
the grooming to the pros!

Now that you know the typical time commitments for a puppy, do you have the
room in your schedule? It isn’t fair to leave your dog home alone all the time.

Responsible pet ownership starts with devoting your time!

All Dogs Need Tricks

There is much more to tricks than a cute puppy doing what you asked. Tricks are vital
for your dog’s health!

The benefits of teaching your dog tricks

There are a number of benefits to teaching your puppy tricks. Tricks keep the
brain stimulated and give your dog a job. Have you ever been impressed by a working
dog and how they stay focused on their handler? You don’t have to put your dog into a
K9 training program in order to have a smart dog. Smart dogs listen when they’re called
and can perform simple tricks.

These basic commands not only stimulate your dog, but they keep them safe.
You want your dog to listen when you call their name instead of running into the road.
You don’t want your dog pulling their leash out of your hand when you’re trying to walk
them. Knowing a trick as simple as stay can help your pup avoid dangerous situations!
Obedience is incredibly important! No puppies up on the counter!

There are tons of options for tricks to teach your dog, but there are a basic 6 that
will create a well mannered pup.

6 tricks to teach your dog

– Sit
– Roll over
– Stay
– Walking on a leash
– Shake
– Heel

How to teach dogs tricks

Positive reinforcement is the best way to teach your dog a new trick. You want
your dog to feel like they have really done something amazing. Combine the positive
reinforcement with short phrases and hand motions.

Positive reinforcement explained

Positive reinforcement means that you give your dog a treat when they do what
you ask of them. One way to keep your dog interested in trying new tricks is to provide
them with high value treats. This doesn’t mean that you need to buy a thirty dollar bag
of treats, but instead just to switch things up. Shredded chicken is one example of an
affordable high value treat. Chicken is a good choice because it isn’t heavy and
shouldn’t cause an upset stomach. Regularly switching out the treats you give your dog
for performing well will keep their interest.

Speaking in phrases

Just like with toddlers, you should limit your phrases to one or two words.
Consider using one of the following phrases to let your dog know it is time to go outside:
time to go potty, let’s go outside, outside time, potty time, bathroom time. Find a phrase
and stick to it!

Be consistent with your word choice and speak firmly. If you’re teaching your dog
to go outside to potty, then you need to have a key word or phrase for that action. Stick
to that phrase each time until they’ve mastered the skill. Don’t change those key
phrases until you’re sure your dog has mastered the skill because you can cause
significant confusion, and undo what you have taught!

Combining phrases and motions

When you are trying to teach your dog a new skill, you have to combine simple
motions with your phrases. Use a hand or body motion each time you say your phrase,
and eventually your dog will be able to perform based on either prompting.

To signal for your dog to stay, you should hold your hand up like a stop sign and
firmly say stay to your pup. If you want your dog to sit you can point down while you tell
them to sit. When you tell your dog to heel on a walk you can pull back slightly on their
leash while you say the word heel.

What trick are you going to teach your puppy first? Do you want them to sit and
stay or do you want them to respond to their name?

Don’t forget, a good treat and an excited tone of voice will help communicate to
your dog that they are doing exactly what they should be doing. Good luck with your
puppy training!

Cost Factors to Consider Before Becoming a Pet Owner

Furry friends are one of the best parts to life. They’re cuddly and goofy, and always
excited to see you.. Even if you’ve only been gone 5 minutes!

In reality, there is more to being a pet owner than getting all the puppy kisses.

There are multiple cost factors involved in pet ownership.

 

The Costs of Daily Necessities

  • Food: Not only do you have to decide which brand of puppy food your dog
    needs, but you also have to look at what stage of life they’re in. There is puppy
    food, adult food, and mature dog food. Large breed food is typically more
    expensive due to the size of the bags.
  • Bedding / Cages: Your dog needs to have a safe zone. Cage training is
    commonly used to teach potty training, but it can also serve as your dog’s safe
    space. Bedding and cages vary by size and price.
  • Grooming: Long haired dogs have to be groomed more often to prevent hair
    matting. Grooming can cost anywhere between $30-$100 depending on your
    dog’s size and specific grooming needs. The majority of groomers offer services
    that include bathing, trimming hair, cleaning ears, filing nails, and expressing anal
    glands.
  • Toys / Treats: Puppy toys and treats are a great way for training your pet as well
    as keeping them in shape. Exercise is a necessity for your animal’s health. After
    a long walk, consider giving them a bone as a reward! If you buy dental treats
    you can help prevent plaque buildup and an expensive cleaning bill from the vet.

 

Vet Care Costs

  • Puppy visits: They’re often weekly during the first few months to establish your
    puppy’s first set of shots and what the puppies require for baseline care.
  • Medicine: Heartworm medicine and flea and tick medicine are two common
    monthly medications. Your pet’s monthly medications are one example of
    preventative care. Preventative care works to decrease the chances for
    administering emergency care.
  • Dental care: Dogs need dental care just like people do! Keeping their teeth clean
    and plaque free prevents them from needing to have teeth pulled. As mentioned
    above, dog dental treats are great preventative care.
  • Spaying / Neutering: Near your pup’s first birthday you will need to considers
  • paying or neutering them. Not only does it prevent surprise litters, but there
  • area number of other health benefits like a decreased risk of certain cancers.

 

Unforeseen Costs

  • Accidents: Of course, you don’t want to think about them, but accidents happen.
    Your dog can eat your sock while you’re cooking dinner, and next thing you know
    you’re taking a trip to the emergency vet! Emergency vets are expensive,
    especially if you have to go after-hours.
  • End of life care: Another sad factor that you don’t want to think about, but you
    really need to consider is end of life care. It costs money for any medicines
    needed to help with pain management. There may come a time when you have
    to make the decision to put your dog down. You do not want to see them suffer.
    Choosing to have your dog cremated costs approximately $50-$150.
  • Allergies: Unfortunately, you cannot plan for your dog to be allergy-free,
    otherwise no one would choose to go through it! Dog puppy skin allergies are
    pretty common among dogs of all breeds. Some pups have a rash that you can
    treat with an ointment, and some require shots. Allergy care ranges in price.
  • Joint issues: There are dog breeds that are notorious for joint issues, but that
    does not mean your dog won’t experience them! Joint issues often arise in older
    age pets, but there are x-rays that can be performed during your pet’s younger
    years if the vet suspects they will have joint issues. X-rays are not cheap.

Do you have the financial means to care for your pet during any unforeseen situations
that may arise?

Are you going to have an emergency fund, pet insurance, or a credit card to pay for any
unexpected problems that arise?

 

The Cost of Extras

  • Training: Many pet owners choose to invest in training. You can find some
    interactive puppy training classes at your local pet store. One on one training is
    typically more expensive, and involves your dog staying with a trainer for multiple
    weeks.
  • Boarding: Cost factors for boarding vary by facility. You can choose to board your
    dog at a facility, have someone stay at your house, or have your dog stay at
    someone else’s house. Using a facility might be more expensive, but it is the
    most reliable option for pet owners. Check in your area for facilities that offer live
    streaming of the doggy play area!

 

As you can see, owning a dog requires more than giving them affection. There are a lot
of cost factors for having a family pet, and that is why it is always recommended to do
your research before you commit.

To take some of the stress off of your shoulders for adding a new furry friend to your
pack, use Doggy Co to ensure you’re getting a dog from a reputable breeder! Using a
reputable breeder eliminates the chances of getting a puppy that will require immediate
emergency vet care for a disease like parvo that is commonly found in puppy mills.

Preparing for a puppy- Is Your Family Ready?

Preparing for a puppy is something that requires a lot of forethought and planning.
Families that take the time to do their research and make a new puppy checklist are
better equipped to add a new furry family member.

The cost factors
There is definitely a cost factor to be considered when you’re preparing your family for a puppy.
Not only do you have to save money for initial supplies for your pup, but you have those
unforgiving vet bills!

To start a life with your furry friend you need to have the puppy essentials including dog food,
toys, treats, bowls, a leash and collar. There are corporations like PetSmart where you can buy
supplies in store, but you can certainly check with other online stores like Amazon or Chewy for
better deals. You’ll want to know what kind of dog food your pup is currently eating before you
go out and buy any. Abruptly switching food brands can cause your new friend to have an upset
stomach.

In the way of vet bills, some families choose to get pet insurance to help offset the cost factors
involved in owning a pet. They find that it is better for their budget to pay monthly for pet
insurance rather than paying large chunks out of pocket for vet bills. You should consider
medicine to be included in the cost of vet bills. Heartworm pills and flea and tick medicine are
the most commonly used monthly medications for dogs. The price of vet bills and medication
depends on your dog’s size and weight.

Do you have money set aside to care for a pet?
Is your family prepared to take on the cost factors involved in being dog owners?

The time commitment
Preparing your family for a puppy means planning out who is going to be in charge of
what parts of your pup’s day to day care. Puppies need affection, training, to be fed, and
daily exercise.

No more waking up at the last minute before you have to leave the house when you
have a dog. You have to make time in your schedule to check your dog’s food and
water and to take them outside. Having a fenced in yard will allow you to let your dog
out while you’re getting ready to leave, but if you don’t have a fence then you need to
make time for an actual walk.

If you plan on getting your new friend as a puppy, then expect an even bigger time
commitment. Potty training isn’t an easy task! Potty training, teething, exercising, and
general care are all time-consuming tasks.

Before getting your pup, look at your daily schedule. How long do you expect your dog
to be alone each day? If you are going to be gone for long hours, then you need to find
someone to stop by and take your pup out for you.

Does your family have time to commit to owning a dog? Being a dog owner requires you
to have the patience and time to provide.

Finding a dog
Before you get a puppy, you need to decide what your family needs. A few things to
consider about your pet should be size, breed, and grooming needs.

Do you have the space for a big dog, or are you better suited for a smaller dog? Does
anyone have fur allergies that would require you to purchase a more hypoallergenic
breed? Have your children ever been around dogs? Do you have the money to devote
to grooming a dog, or should you get a breed that doesn’t require regular haircuts?

After you’ve decided what kind of dog you’re looking for, it is time to start looking for
available dogs. Be EXTREMELY careful not to fund a puppy mill. One way to avoid that
risk altogether is to use DoggyCo. We only work with breeders that are top quality. No
backyard puppy mills are accepted! We make sure to match you with a pup that is going
to be the perfect addition to your family. Take a look at the puppies that are available!

Is your family ready for a dog? There are cost factors, time commitments, and breed
knowledge that all need to be discussed before you’re ready to adopt a puppy.

Do your research and get the whole family involved in preparing for your furry friend.
Owning a dog is a lifelong commitment, but it is the sweetest love you will ever know!