Tip on Dealing with Hair Mats in Your Dog

Removing hair mats is fraught with potential complications. Many mats are firmly attached to the skin, so you must be extremely careful not to cut the skin as you cut off the mat. Many small mats can be removed with a thorough brushing. If mats remain, try to make the mat smaller by brushing the hair near the mat.

Once you are sure that the mat can only be removed by cutting the hair, then go for the scissors. Clippers are the safest and best way to remove matted hair. Unfortunately, most people do not own clippers and must make do with scissors. Be very careful. For severely matted pets, it is easier and safer to see a groomer for professional help.

Tip on Dog Adoption

Are you thinking about getting a new dog? There are several factors to consider before you bring a dog into your home. If so, there are several things you should consider when getting a dog including:

1. Are you ready for a dog?
2. Do you have enough money for a dog?
3. When is the wrong time to get a dog?
4. What kind of dog should you get?
5. What age is best for you?
6. Where do you get your dog?
7. Is adoption right for you?
8. What's in an adoption contract?
9. How do I choose between dogs?
10. How do I plan to include the dog in my home?
11. What do I need before taking my new dog home?

Tip on Vomiting in Dogs

Some dogs can vomit occasionally. A common question owners ask is when should you worry? If a dog vomits more than once in a day, the vomiting is associated with other signs including lethargy, diarrhea or not eating or there is blood in the vomit, then it is time to worry.

For more information on vomiting, go to Vomiting in Dogs.

Heat Index Tip

Heat index is the apparent or perceived temperature of the environment and is associated with humidity. As humidity increases, the temperature seems hotter than it actually is. As the heat index rises, the potential for heatstroke increases. In humid environments, it is more difficult for dogs to cool themselves. Use precautions to avoid heat injury, especially when the temperature is over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Reduce exercise and limit times outdoors. Air conditioning and fans can help keep your pet cool.

For more information, please read the story Keeping your Dog Cool in the Summer.

Tip on Keeping Your Dogs Coat Looking Great

Keeping your dog's coat at its best means keeping a regular check on internal parasites. Worms can sap essential nutrients from your dog, which would cause the hair coat to lose its luster and quality, not to mention causing other serious health problems. Your veterinarian will recommend a fecal exam during wellness exams to check for parasites. Watch for fleas and ticks too. These creatures can make your pet feel miserable and itchy and cause severe scratching, which could damage the coat.

Spring Mulch Tip

If you are getting ready to mulch your spring garden, carefully select a pet-safe mulch. Most types of mulch are relatively safe, however, a new type of mulch made out of cocoa bean hulls is becoming more popular and can be dangerous.

Cocoa bean mulch is a deep brown color with a lovely aroma making it attractive. However, when ingested, it can cause symptoms of chocolate toxicity. If you have a dog that likes to "eat" mulch – you may want to stick with basic hardwood mulch.

For more information on mulch toxicity, please read Cocoa Mulch Toxicity.

Pet Odor Tips

Removing strong pet odors is never easy. The best way to get rid of them is to try products labeled "enzymatic" odor eliminators such as Zero Odor. These products work to break up proteins in urine and fecal material that carry strong odors. Use the product consistently in problem areas and limit your pet's access to these locations to reduce repeat incidents.

For more information, read the articles Inappropriate Elimination in Dogs and Reducing Dog Urine Odor.

Tips on Adopting a Dog from a Shelter

Are you thinking about getting a new dog? Are you considering a shelter?

Shelters and humane societies are great places to find a new friend. Before you go, you should take a look at the shelter to see if it is right for you.

1. Look at the facility. Is it clean? Does it smell? The cleaner the better as several diseases can be transmitted by poor sanitation and ventilation.

2. Is the staff knowledgeable and professional? Do they seem to care about their pets?

3. What is their adoption procedure?

4. Does the shelter have a veterinarian that cares for the dogs? If so, what kind of care do they get?

5. What is their health guarantee or return policy?

These are just a few items to consider when adopting from a shelter. You should also consider a list of questions you may want to ask about the shelter and dog.

Tips on ID Tags for Dogs

Every dog should have an ID tag. Regardless of whether your dog is indoors most of the time, in a fenced in yard or always on a leash, he or she should have an identification tag. If lost, he gets out or gets away, an ID tag will be the best method to be reunited with your dog.

Make sure the information on the tag is current. Consider using your cell phone if it is your primary phone number.

For more information on tips for keeping your dog safe, please read Methods of Identification for Dogs.

Tip for Giving new Life to Old Bones

Here is a tip from one of our PetPlace.com users:

I have 2 golden retrievers and they LOVE to chew bones! I was constantly buying hard bones they have for dogs but when the flavor coating was chewed away they would loss interest only occasionally chewing them. So what I do to add a whole new life to the old bones is put some peanut butter inside the bones and they LOVE them! It keeps them busy and entertained for a while trying to get all the peanut butter out of the bone. It is an inexpensive alternative to buying countless bones.

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