Subscribe to Your Pets UniverseNews Feed

Neutering or Spaying Your New Dog

March 24, 2009 by  
Filed under Neutering or Spaying Your New Dog

If you are having doubts about neutering or spaying your new dog, you have to consider the benefits for his or her health and for both your lives.

Male dogs are not "manly" and female dogs do not "need" to have puppies.

There are people (usually men... no offense, guys) that actually think that keeping their dog's testicles intact is manly, both for the dog and for the owner... sometimes, people go as far as to have prosthetic testicles inserted for their neutered dogs. To each it's own, but... really?

Also, breeding a dog is not necessarily better for the animal, neither male nor female, and it certainly can make dogs much more difficult to manage if they are not neutered.

Unless there is a specific reason to breed your dog, it should be neutered or spayed at an early age to prevent pregnancies, avoid aggressive male behavior, and even lessening the possibilities of some forms of cancer.

It's normally recommended that the dog gets neutered between 2 and 6 months old. Of course, there is always a small risk associated with any sort of surgery, but it's riskier to own a dog with an aggressive sex drive. Another reason to do it early, is that younger pups manage through the surgery option much better than older dogs. The surgery is very simple and can be performed in a matter of minutes.

Now, let's clarify some myths:

Early neutering or spaying does not stunt growth. That's a myth propagated by breeders and others who don't want to spay their animals.

Your dog will not get fat and lazy after being spayed or neutered unless you feed him/her too much.

What happens if your male dog is not neutered?

-They will pee on everything they find on their way: furniture, curtains, shoes, clothes, walls... you get the idea.
-Dogs might be aggressive to other dogs and also hump even other male dogs. Just this fact should give you an idea of what kind of aggression can develop in those circumstances, besides, it's very embarrassing.
-Even dogs that normally have the most wonderful temperament, can get aggressive towards humans and other dogs. A male will actually attempt to kill any male who he thinks will mate a bitch near him.

Don't be kind to your dog by "letting try it out at least once". Once a dog has actually had sex, his behavior can be magnified significantly when coming in contact with fertile bitches.
When a male dog is after a fertile female, breeding is the only thing on his mind. He will do anything that he can think of to get to her: scaling fences, breaking down doors, mating through fences, digging, etc. Besides risking getting sued for any damage, another thing to consider is that you are as responsible as the owner of the female for any puppies that are born.

What happens if your female dog is not spayed?

Rotweiller Puppy

Rovespierre

-First, you can count on having her locked up twice a year to keep her away from all those dogs that I mentioned before.

-Her risk of mammary cancer doubles, although it doubles from almost nothing to very low with only one heat, it climbs quickly thereafter till after 5 heats as it starts to approach 50%. Be very careful that you don't allow a mating when she gets her first heat because this can be life threatening. It is very important to spay her before the first heat.
-A brother and sister from the same litter can create their own litters by the age of five months. It is not a good idea to allow this to happen.
-Male dogs can sometimes be quite aggressive to a female in season.
-Your house will be a mess, and her behavior will drive you crazy.

After reading all this, you need to ask yourself, "is it really worth it?"

Frankly, in the 99.99% of cases, it is not.

Don't wait until your dog starts getting sexual drives before you neuter him. In many cases, once the dog starts the misbehavior associated with attempting to breed, that behavior can stay even after the neutering has taken place.

Do yourself, your family, your neighbors and your beloved dogs a favor by getting them spayed and neutered.

Bringing a New Puppy Home

March 24, 2009 by  
Filed under Life With Dogs

You got your new puppy almost a week ago. Since then, the little angel has eaten your favorite shoes, two of your favorite novels, gnawed the trim around every doorway, chewed through the power cord of your computer and this morning he found boxes and boxes of kleenex in your bathroom... what a mess! This is getting really expensive and it's starting to get very dangerous for the puppy also. Maybe you should do something.

What do you do?

You need to understand that chewing is a normal and healthy part of any pup's development, but they should know what to chew, right? Puppies are like human children, they learn about their world through chewing. They use their senses to explore the new world, and their tactile sense and sense of taste is brought into play as they chew on various objects.

Like human children, pups need our protection from the dangers of the dangers that lurk in their explorations.
Everything from needles, electrical cords, houseplants and household chemicals, to chocolate and raisins, all pose very real threats to your pet. It is your duty to protect her from these threats.

You have to be very consistent training him with the "NO" command. You puppy should learn and respond to the word "No" instantly. This one word has saved many dogs from horrible fates. The puppy is trained by using the "NO" command every time a situation occurs. If you catch your pet chewing on your shoes, say "NO" in a serious tone, not screaming, not angry, and take the item from him or her. Don't let it become a tug-o-war. Just remove the item quickly and give him a suitable toy. Also, try not to chase him when he has the object in his mouth or he'll think it's a game.

Gorgeous White Puppy

Lady Pee

When I bring a puppy home, I like to use one of my unwashed pillow cases, and put a lot of different toys with different textures (hard plastic, cloth, soft plastic, rubber, etc.) in it. Then I choose one toy of each textures, and those are his toys for the day. That way he doesn't get bored, and since the toys have my scent, it helps the bonding process as well.

Another thing I do is buy marrow bones and boil them just a few minutes just enough to get the marrow out. Then I wrap them in foil and freeze them. This serves two purposes: one, it keeps him entertained and happy for hours, specially if I give it to him just before I leave. And two, the frozen bone alleviates the pain of his growing teeth, so he'll be grateful. Just be careful never to boil the bones more than 4 or 5 minutes, and never give him any other kind of bone!  You can give him raw-hide bones, but not too many, just once in a while. Pieces of ice are also a good idea. My dogs have always loved to chew on those!

With these simple suggestions, you can insure your puppy's good health and the well being of many, many shoes.

Control Your Dog’s Excited Urination

Who has not come across a dog that pees on cue as soon as you approach him or her to greet them?  This is what is called submissive or excited urination

What is submissive or excited urination and why does it happen?

A submissive urinator is a dog that cannot help urinating in situations of extreme excitement or stress - he'll go on the floor, on himself on you, on your furniture or on your guests!

Puppies are a perfect example of submissive urinators. They'll pee whenever they're excited to see you or when they meet a stranger. But sometimes very timid or sensitive adult dogs can have the problem too. It's very typical of a dog that has been abused to exhibit this behavior.

This problem can happen in many situations:

-When they meet you after a prolonged absence
-When they're playing
-When your guests arrive
-When there's a stressful situation at home
-When you scold him or correct him
-Loud noises like a thunderstorm or fireworks

But don't despair. It is really not difficult to fix this problem of submissive/excited urination.

First of all, take him to the veterinarian to make sure there’s no medical reason for the issue. Diabetes or a bladder infection can have the same effect.

Then you can follow some simple steps:

cutepets-sleeping

Nugget

-Limit his intake of water. This doesn't mean that you should restrict his water intake, but if, for example, you are expecting guests, or you will soon have a play session, take his water bowl away for a little while before the event happens.

-Don't make your coming home a big event. When you come in the door, ignore him, go about your business and don't get him worked up. The more excited he is, the harder it will be for him to control his bladder. I know I have a hard time not saying a warm hello to my baby, but you can always ignore him for the first few seconds and then crouch down and greet him calmly.

-Keep in mind the importance of NOT punishing or yelling at your dog when he has his "accident". Remember he cannot control it and above all, he's not doing it on purpose. When you catch him in the act, interrupt him with a firm “No!”, and praise him when he stops, but never punish him. Keep calm and be understanding: he doesn’t mean to do it.

-When he urinates out of fear (submissiveness) when you are scolding him for another reason, try to maintain an authoritative and firm tone, but don't get angry. Keep in mind that in all probability, you are dealing with a sensitive, highly-strung dog, so, if you get angry or worry him further, the problem will definitely get worse.


-When the problem happens with loud noises like fireworks, if you show a reaction yourself and pet him for being scared, you will only be rewarding the behavior and training him to repeat it, and you don't want that. You can try and make it a game. When you hear a loud bang, say, "what was that!" Make it a search game and give him a treat or a toy. You can also make no reaction whatsoever, or fuss or comfort him. Give him the down and stay commands, give him a treat and tell him he's a good boy.

Always remember that when you have a dog, you must treat him with respect and understanding. Almost every "problem" has a solution, and with a little patience, you can do it without the need of expensive training. A few hours working on a problem, can give you many years of enjoyment with your best friend.