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Bow Wow Meow Boutique

I’ve talked about the Animal Care Society before and about how it’s a non-profit organization and what that entails. What I didn’t go into detail on was where, besides direct donations, do shelters such as this one get their money? The answer is fundraisers and special events.

The Animal Care Society in Louisville, KY has three main fundraisers plus a few smaller ones on the side. Their fundraisers provide for 40 percent of finances needed to run the shelter.

The following video will provide a little more insight on the most recent fundraiser put on by the Animal Care Society; the Bow Wow Meow Boutique.

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Chance is a strong, sturdy dog and a very stubborn puller when being walked. The pronged collar was the right choice for him.

As I’ve said before exercising your dog is essential to their leading a healthy and happy life. But as much as I’ve stressed how important it is to walk your dog daily I have yet to talk about the proper tools to use when you’re setting out to do this.

The vital question here is when to use a collar and when to use a harness and what types of each to use. This can vary based on your dog’s size, health conditions and how well he or she walks.

First and foremost, if your dog has trachea problems, troubles breathing or spinal damage do not use a collar when walking them especially if they are prone to pulling. Use a harness to take the pressure off their necks and throats.

There are a variety of collars to choose from if your pet is not a puller. Traditional collars should be chosen to coordinate with your canine’s size and strength. They should fit snug, high on the dog’s neck with room enough to fit two fingers in between the neck and the collar.

Chain-slip collars are a good training tool for mild pullers and involve a quick tug and release movement for correction purposes. Pronged collars are the step up from this and are for more stubborn pullers.

Last, but not least, there are the halter-type collars which fit over the dog’s nose and chin somewhat like a muzzle and provide maximum control for the owner.

Harnesses are a completely different concept. They are mainly for pullers that refuse to be corrected or dogs with health issues that make harnesses a safer and more comfortable option for them. Harnesses attach around the neck and behind the front legs. To find the right harness you must measure for size and fit in width, length and tightness for individual dogs.

Regardless of whether you think a collar or a harness is the best choice for your pet remember to check fit frequently, attach tags to whatever they wear and remove their collar or harness if they’re being left home alone or in a crate.

Where do dogs come from?

Melissa, a Miniature Pinscher, evolved from wolves like all dogs, but her breed is not one of the ancient breeds.

I’ve talked a lot about dog breeds and how to take care of your dogs, but what about the history of man’s best friend? Where did our canine companion come from?

All dogs evolved from domesticated wolves. Keep in mind it wasn’t a specific type of breeding that created dogs, simply evolution. This evolution has taken place between 40 and 150,000 years ago.

Every dog evolved from wolves, but they are a part of the Canidae group of animals which includes not only wolves, but also jackals, foxes, coyotes and dingoes.

Dogs first originated in the Middle East, found out because they seem to have more in common with the gray wolf that lives in that area than any other wolves. Although dogs began evolving at this time (some ancient breeds including the Siberian Husky, Afghan Hound and Alaskan Malamute), 80 percent of dog breeds today evolved within that last few hundred years.

Not only are new breeds evolving, but dogs are also growing more and more different from their wolf counterparts. They’re temperaments are progressively different, thus allowing them to be domesticated. As well they are growing to look more and more different from wolves as the species adapts to lives with humans.

Healthy, happy and hairy

Dogs are just like people. They need exercise, mental stimuli, regimented diets, sleep and of course fun and play with friends. If dogs don’t get what they need in all these categories, they can lead unhealthy, unhappy and often quite short lives.

If you keep your canine companion on the right track in every aspect of his or her life, you’ll notice some improvements in coat, eyes and nose, heartbeat, weight and temperament. Here are a few tips to help your furry friend lead the happy, healthy life he or she deserves:

I’m sure everyone has heard of dogs that assist people with visual and hearing impairments, but a new type of service dog has recently been discovered: seizure alert and response dogs.

Around 2.3 million Americans suffer from epileptic seizures and episodes can last anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes and leave the sufferer helpless and sometimes unconscious. Many who have this disorder fear to be alone while doing ordinary tasks and to leave the house often.

Seizure alert and response dogs, unlike other service dogs, cannot be trained to detect seizures. They are born with this ability and for this reason breed, size and age varies in these canines. Seizure alert dogs have a 90 percent accuracy rate. These canines warn their owner of a seizure anywhere from 30 seconds to 45 minutes before. The methods of alert vary between dogs and can include pawing, intense eye contact and/or barking.

If a dog has this innate ability for detected seizures he or she can then be trained in responding to seizures. These dogs can be trained, by a specific group or even by the owner, to do a variety of things prior to and during a seizure. They can be trained to urge their owner to a safe place or position, to fetch medication and a phone, press an alarm button, fetch a family member, or even roll their owner on his or her side.

Seizure response and alert dogs can be very pricey, sometimes reaching around $19,000. Of course, there are many non-profit organizations that donate these dogs (sometimes with just a requested donation) such as Canine Assistants and Canine Partners For Life.

Which is the dog for me?

Boxers such as Tara are great breeds for owners of cats.

Yes, dogs are individuals. Every dog is different and has his or her own personality. According to Dog Training Central, where a dog’s from, the socialization, age and training all play a crucial role in a dog’s temperament and personality.

Although this is true, a dog’s breed can play a giant role in what kind of situation they’re best in. Whether you have a family and children, cats or an apartment there’s sure to be a breed for you.

Families with children should first teach their children how to act around dogs if possible. But aside from that there are a few breeds that will be great for this situation. Both Golden and Labrador Retrievers are great with kids because of their high intelligence and affectionate, loyal nature. The Bernese Mountain Dog is good for families that want a large, gentle dog.  Beagles are also a good choice because they’re sweet and highly sociable.

Most people that already have a cat or two should usually turn to younger puppies when looking for a canine companion. It’s generally easier for cats and dogs to get along if they’re raised together. A few breeds that have a reputation for getting along with cats are Great Pyrenees, Bichon Frise and Boxers. Numerous terrier type breeds have been ranked low in cat friendliness. Terriers have been bred to hunt and therefore are prone to chase and are generally a bad choice for cat owners.

Some breeds that do well for apartment owners include American Hairless Terriers, Australian Terriers and Basset Hounds. The most important thing for apartment owners to remember is that even if they get a small, low-energy dog to fit their apartment lifestyle, exercise is still essential and any dog will have to be walked daily.

On the other hand, for people that have high-energy lifestyles and love to do things such as hike, large, energetic and short-haired breeds are a better choice. Breeds such as Weimaraners, Rottweilers and English Springer Spaniels are all good choices. Also, dog lovers with allergies can still find a perfect fit. Breeds that usually shed less and produce less dander include Bedlington Terriers, Chinese Crested and Irish Water Spaniels.

Regardless of your lifestyle or situation, if you love dogs there will always be a dog for you. Remember to keep in mind a few other factors besides simply the breed. All dogs are different. In addition, to help with your breed search visit this Dog Breed Selector Quiz.

Dog or no dog?

As many students in college that are dog lovers have most likely considered getting a canine companion while they are enrolled full time. But before doing this, said student needs to think about a few things.

Dogs are expensive. Besides the cost of actually purchasing the dog, they also need food, toys and accessories such as a leash and collar not to mention vet appointments and any medicine or treatments they might require. The cost of owning a dog can range from $700 to $3,000 per year.

Dogs require a lot of time, care and attention. College students already have to balance classes, homework, social time and often times work. If you’re already having trouble balancing these things, then you don’t have time to give a pet the treatment it deserves.

Of course, having a dog while in college can offer some benefits too. A canine companion to come home to and take care of can put you in a better mood, help control stress, encourage exercise, provide social support and as always unconditional love.

If you feel you have the time and finances to comfortably provide for a dog while in college, there are a few tips that might help. As usual, plan ahead and set aside some money. Try to work your new furry friend into your plans. Make sure you have a suitable living environment (and one that allows pets) and a roommate that approves and maybe even is willing to help out.

Having a dog while in college is not for everyone and some people should forget about it until they’re graduated. But that’s not to say that no one can handle it. It can be done and for some people it works out better that way.