8 Things You Must Know About Dog Collars

Having a good collar is very important for proper control of your dog, especially for outdoor control. It is always your responsibility to choose the right type of collar, though dogs love to move around freely for their safety collars and leashes can help you protect them from going astray. There are some key things you should know to make the right choice of collar that will be comfortable for the dog and give you more flexibility of control;

The Materials are Different

There are varieties of collar materials, these include the canvas, leather, and nylon but the leather dog collars tend to be more comfortable because they are stronger and can be adjusted according to the needs of the dog and the owner. The only drawback of leather collars is that they can absorb oils from the skin of dogs, which may create some odor. For this reason, the leather collar must not be too tight on the dog’s neck. Nylon collars are lighter, and they could be the best options for small dogs. Canvas collars are very durable and may be suitable most for dogs involved in sports.

Collars Work Better with Tags

Tags normally contain information about your dog; hence it can make it easier to track the dog and return them to the original owners when they get lost. Just like collars, tags also come in diverse different colors you can choose from.

Cleanliness of the Collar is Important

Most dog owners neglect the need to keep collars clean. The truth about dog collars is that, prolong usage can eventually lead to skin irritation, especially with collars that are too tight. Make sure you change a collar if you notice hair loss around the neck of the dog, especially where the collar is placed.

Anti-pull Harness is a Must

When choosing a dog collar, it is important to buy anti-pull harness because it helps prevent hurting your dog especially when you choose an extra-tight collar. Dogs do have delicate necks and choosing a wrong shape or size of collar can easily hurt them, creating inflammation or bruises. For this reason, the harness of the dog is the main factor to consider when buying a collar.

Personalizing Your Dog Collar is Fun and Practical

Today there are diverse types of designs on dog collars you may want to consider. These include the metallic plates with an inscription of a dog name and phone number of the dog owner. Some of these inscriptions are engraved on different collar materials while the plates are available in many shapes and colors. Metal plates for personalizing dog collars can come in the form of aluminum and stainless steel and they do not add substantial weight to your leather, canvas or nylon collar. In many cases, the dog collar metallic plates can be reflective.

Another option you may consider is the necklace with some jewelry letters such as the dog name and contact number of the dog owner. The embroidered dog collars are only used to customize nylon collars.

Always Add 2-inches to Final Collar Length

Perhaps the best way to decide the right size of collar for your dog is to measure the size of the neck. Simply measure the base of the neck and keep pulling the measuring tape until it snugs. Add 2 inches to the final length or simply keep the width loose with two fingers. In addition to causing bruises and pain to the dog, a very tight collar can make it extremely difficult for the dog to eat or breathe. On the other hand, a very loose collar may get caught up in something which may allow the dog to escape. Make sure you choose the right size that is adjustable so that you wouldn’t make it too loose or too tight.

The Ease of Care is Very Important

The ease or difficulty of care for a dog’s collar is different for all types of collar. Nylon collar, for instance, is easier to maintain than the leather collar. To clean a nylon collar, you can use water and soap and hang the collar to dry. Nylon collar doesn’t have an issue being wet, and you can clean them every couple of weeks, and if your dog enjoys swimming, perhaps a nylon collar will be the ideal option. The leather collar is more involved hence you will need a special cleaning solution to keep them clean and well-maintained. Leather collars are not friends with water; hence they must be kept dry.

Costs Consideration for Dog Collar

While nylon collars may be the most convenient and easiest to maintain, they also cost less. Leather collars are more premium and they cost more than nylon collar. Nylons are less durable and they can wear out quicker than the leather collar. The more customization options you go for, the costlier the collar gets.

Conclusion

Some collars can be luxurious and give you some sense of class but you may have to pay more in maintenance. Leather collars often come in darker colors while nylon collars come in diverse varieties of color. It is also easier to customize nylon than other materials like leather and canvas, however, customization may add quickly to the cost of a nylon collar. Leather collars work with buckles which makes it easier to adjust their length around the neck of a dog, unlike nylon collars that come with a specific length.

Nylon collars, on the other hand, come with a quick-release buckle which means they can be put on or remove from the dog easily. A leather collar will not slip off the dog accidentally due to its design, while a dog can easily slip out of a nylon collar. For this reason, you can conclude that a leather collar is more practical than the nylon collar. If you want a more colorful collar that can be reflective even in the dark, perhaps a nylon collar may be a suitable option. Whatever the options you consider, it always makes sense to put comfort and practically ahead of all other factors.

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What You Absolutely Need to Know About Being an Eco-Friendly Dog Owner

Maybe before you bought a dog, you didn’t realize that you’d have to compromise on the eco-friendly side of things. But now that your furry best friend is in, you can’t get over how much you are contributing to environmental degradation.

You aren’t happy with having to give up on your eco-friendly nature because you have a dog now. However, where there is a will, there is a way!

While initially, it may seem impossible to get out of your cycle, you will see how you can change into an eco-friendly dog owner one step at a time.

We’ve found some solutions for you that can get you right back on track!

1. Trail After Pets

We don’t mean for you to frighten your dogs by following around them all the time. But when you do take your dog outside, keep an eye on it because you are responsible for any mess that it makes. And by mess, we mean feces!

It is very unpleasant to have to clean your dog’s waste off the middle of the road but it is good for the environment as well as the sign of a responsible dog owner. Many diseases can spread from the waste and it may pollute other waterways as well as infect other dogs.

Another thing that you should remember as an eco-friendly dog owner is that carrying a plastic bag is not how you should be cleaning up after them. If you’re taking them outside then you should grab your pooper scooper so that you can put it directly in the trash instead of the plastic.

2. Biodegradable Disposal

Pooper scoopers are a great way to be an eco-friendly dog owner, however, on the days when you completely forgot to carry it with you; you can keep some biodegradable disposal bag right into your car or handbags. They are made out of healthier material like paper. It can compost in less than 6 months unlike plastic which will sit around for years.

3. Composting

Composting your dog’s waste may be a little bit of a complex and time-taking procedure and less feasible based on where you’re living. However, if you do have the time for it and are really dedicated to the cause then composting your dog’s poop can help prevent the pollution of waterways by turning the hazardous waste into fertile manure?

4. Lessen Chemicals

Your pet-safe shampoos and detergents are loaded with all types of chemicals, and these products can’t be done away with either due to their integral need in your dog’s life. You probably have most of the products that are used to rid your dog of pet dander, fleas or ticks.

However, switching to more organic versions may work just as well for your dog. Try out some organic ones with citrus extracts. For more serious environmentalists, you can look up ways to make these products on your own with castile soap, vinegar or olive oil.

5. Control Diet

Controlling the calorie intake of your dog will not only help the environment but also the dog. Pets nowadays are fed much more than they are supposed to be fed in the first place which leads to heavier bodies. No dog owner would want their dog to be lethargic and sick, simply lying around all day. Decreasing their intake of red meat can help keep them healthy and can also reduce the load of meat production.

6. Toys are for Your Dogs

Did you know canines cannot see any color? Then why have you been investing in colorful and electronic dog chews? Most of the times, the reason that dog owners buy these fancy toys for their dogs is to gain the satisfaction of giving their dogs the best products.

However, a dog can literally not tell the difference between different colors. Moreover, such fancy toys are quite harmful for the environment during both- their production as well as disposal process. To be an environmentally responsible dog owner, you can make your own toys for your dog by tying a couple of knots on an old t-shirt. You can also look up more DIY toys for your dogs.

What Your Dog Is Trying To Tell You: Examples of Canine Body Language

Whilst most dogs (and their owners) love their daily walk, they can sometimes be a source of stress; traffic, animals, people and other dogs (on and off leash).

Despite their inability to talk, dogs can let us know exactly how they’re coping when out and about; we just need to know what we’re looking for.

We need to watch their body language.

Their behaviour. Any changes, both big and small.

The subtle signs from a stressed dog are often missed.

These include lip licking, yawning, turning away or excessive panting or drooling in the absence of strenuous exercise or food. But there are some more tell-tale signals, specific to certain scenarios.

We’ll cover the typical situations you’ll find yourselves in, on a daily walk and what behaviours to look out for!

Approaching Another Dog

In this situation you need to be paying attention to both dogs. Whilst your own dog is your priority, you have no idea what understanding the other owner has of dog behaviour, and what they may miss.

A relaxed dog has a fluid body, they will walk freely.

Their ears will lie in their normal position (whether this is up or down), as will their tail. If they are looking to play, a dog will usually offer the play bow; they drop their front end to the ground and wiggle their back end up in the air!

Think typical puppy play stance! Dogs will instinctively approach side on and smell the back end of the other dog.

Approaching directly, eyes facing, often results in a negative interaction as it’s perceived as confrontational.

Watch for stiff body movements, a raised and tense tail (perhaps even slowly wagging), watch for hair standing on end along the neck and a back. A stressed dog will have a wide gaze – suddenly their eyes seem black (due to the dilated pupils). If your dog, or the other dog tenses up, simply walk away from each other. Don’t call their name, as they will often ignore recall during moments of high stress.

This goes without saying if you notice growling, snarling or lunging.

Approaching Other Animals

Your dog will likely show interest in other animals.

But you run a huge risk if the other animal is small and furry and your pooch was bred to chase or hunt small furries!

Whilst the small furry is likely able to get away, your dog could end up in places he really shouldn’t be – like in the way of oncoming traffic!

If your dog is wary of larger animals and become scared, they could be a risk of upsetting the livestock with their barking or lunging.

Again, watch for a change in posture. If your dog is simply walking tentatively past other animals, just monitor and continue walking.

If your dog becomes scared (raised hackles, barking), you will likely need to work on some strategies to help your dog settle around these animals.

Start from a distance and help them associate the animals with good experiences (calm, reward-filled etc). If your dog tends to chase – keep them on leash whenever you are expecting to be near small-furries.

Road-Side Walking

Whilst walking along the road, your dog will have to deal with a lot.

It also becomes unpredictable. Sometimes there are big trucks, sometimes there are fast little bikes.

Your dog will let you know if they are unsure. They may start to walk slower or try to turn away. Their ears may lay flat or back.

They may start panting or drooling. Their tail may go between their legs. Equally, they may become aggressive, lunging at cars or trucks and barking.

In this case, as an owner, it’s important to go back to basics and re-socialise out on the roadside. Start from a distance and make the experience reward-filled, so they learn it’s nothing to fear.

A general understanding of dog body language will give you the best opportunity to keep your dog safe and happy, but there are things to look out for in certain scenarios.

If you are concerned about your dog’s behaviour at any time, it’s vital to seek the advice of a qualified professional.

How to Properly Bathe Your Dog at Home

Everyone who has dogs loves them just like family members – we all want the best of the best for them and go to lengths to keep them happy and healthy. However, when the dreaded bath time is looming on the horizon, we tend to procrastinate. It is true that, depending on the breed of your dog (and whether he or she enjoys this process), bathing can be quite a tiring task, and not all of us are in a position to pay regular visits to the dog salon, however, bathing your dog regularly is an essential part of taking care of them. After all, dogs are notorious for loving all things dirty, and you don’t want all of that inside your home. A lot of questions might be in your mind right now, such as how often you should do this, what products you should use, and generally, how you should go about it. To help you out, here is a guide that will tell you how to properly bathe your dog at home.

So, how often should you bathe your dog?

Unfortunately, the answer to this question is more complex than you would like. While your dog naturally grooms themselves, you still need to give them a bath occasionally to help this process. However, doing it too often is not a good idea. Bathing your dog too often can irritate their skin and hair follicles, and even increase the risk of bacterial or fungal infections, so you certainly want to avoid that. Many people make a mistake here but keep in mind that the only time you need to bathe your dog is when they smell or when they are dirty.

If you keep your dog indoors most of the time, you probably won’t need to bathe them more than a few times a year, but if your dog is really mischievous and rolls around in all kinds of things outdoors, you’ll need to do it more often. But your dog’s breed, coat type and health also play a role in this answer. Some long-haired breeds need special attention when bathing, some breeds such as Basset Hounds have oilier coats, and some dogs have skin conditions that will require more frequent bathing with the right, prescribed products. So, keep all of this in mind when making a decision about your pooch.

What you will need

To properly bathe and groom your dog, you’re going to need more than just a bottle of shampoo and an old towel. But indeed, those are the first things that you should get. Find at least two good, absorbent towels and go shopping for dog shampoo. Needless to say, you mustn’t use human shampoo on your dog, as dogs have a different skin pH balance from humans. Dog shampoo without soap and made with few ingredients is the best.

If you are planning to bathe your dog in your bathroom, the best thing is to put the rubber shower mats in the bathtub and prevent your pet from slipping, as well as to get some kind of apron for you (or clothes that you don’t mind getting wet.) If you are lucky enough to have a backyard where you can bathe your dogs, you can use your garden hose at low pressure if the water temperature is not too cold or hot. You will also need to have your dog’s brushes at hand. Needless to say, both the shampoo and the brushes should be purchased with the kind of coat your dog has in mind and their health concerns, if there are any.
How to prepare

Once you have everything that you need laid out, it’s time to prepare for the bath. Before getting all wet, you should brush your dog well and remove all the loose hairs and tangles from their fur. This is especially important if your dog has a double coat or if their coat is simply thick. If you are concerned about shampoo getting in your puppy’s eyes, you can use artificial tears ointment that is going to protect their eyes. You will also need to protect their ears to prevent infection, so you should put a cotton ball in each of your dog’s ears before bathing.

It is also advised that if you want to get your puppy’s nails cut, you should do it before giving them a bath. However, cutting dogs’ nails is not as easy as it sounds, as you have to pay attention to the length not to cause health complications. So, unless you know what you are doing, it is advised that you have your vet or groomer do this step.

Get down to it

It’s important to ease your dog into what’s about to come in order to make it easier for both of you. If your dog is not trained for baths yet, you should start practicing as soon as possible. Get them acquainted with all the equipment involved, the sound of the water, and teach them how to get in and out of the tub. Use toys and treats in the process and they will accept it easier. Once both of you are ready, start the water at a low pressure not to startle the dog.

Wet their coat thoroughly – this can take a while if your dog has long fur but bear with it. Avoid putting water on your dog’s head. Then, it’s time to add the shampoo and lather up by massaging it into their fur all the way. You should be careful not to get it on their head and face as much as you can. If you really need to clean their face, use a damp cloth or towel to wipe it. Leave on the shampoo for as long as the instructions on the bottle say you should, and then it’s time to rinse it out thoroughly. You can also apply a conditioner but this is completely optional.

Drying off

Once you’ve rinsed out the shampoo, prepare to get wet as chances are, your dog’s first instinct is going to be to shake off the excess water. After that, take the towel you have prepared and dab it on your pup (for long-haired breeds, it’s not recommended to rub it in order to avoid matting). Try your best to prevent your dog from running out right away to roll in the dirt and destroy your hard work. It’s best to keep them inside until they are completely dry.

Your best bet is letting your dog air dry, but if the circumstances don’t allow it, you can use a hairdryer with caution. If you are going to use a hairdryer, make sure the setting is on a low temperature as you don’t want to burn your puppy. Don’t point the blow dryer at their face or ears. There are special blow dryers made just for dogs that operate on room temperature, so if you have the extra money, it can come in handy. Otherwise, using a regular hairdryer can be risky.

Finishing touches

Now you are almost done with bathing your dog. Remove the cotton balls from their ears and gently clean excess ear wax from their ears. Take your brush and brush through their coat, once again, to prevent matting which can lead to all kinds of health complications. Once everything is finished, don’t forget to reward your dog for their good behavior with praise, plenty of treats and playtime.

Conclusion

Bathing a dog is no small ordeal, and the bigger the dog the bigger this task becomes. Different breeds have different needs too and you have to do your own homework before jumping in as well. In addition, as you can see, it can take quite some time to do it properly, so if you believe you simply cannot fit this into your schedule, instead of doing it less than adequately, your best option is finding a reliable dog salon. That way, your pet can be clean and healthy.