Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Thundershirt update!

Bernie spazzes over the vacuum. Barking, chasing it, to the extent where he shakes and I have to crate him. This is bad, because I love to vacuum!  I put the thundershirt on him while vacuuming...hoping it would help. No such luck, he went on with his insane attack on the vacuum. Then, Sunday it rained, poured & thundered all day. I put the thundershirt on Bernie and he seemed much more relaxed. Finally, something that helps calm him during bad storms. He paced a little still and shook, but not near as bad as he used to.
And..he looks darn cute in it doesn't he?!

Run Run Rover!

Most dogs are not couch potatoes. They can become that way over time, with the help of their lazy or busy owner.  Big or small, purebred or mutt they all need to run, fetch, exercise and play. So just how MUCH exercise does your pooch need? For starters, take a look at their breed. Let's look at Border Collies, they are working dogs that are bred to herd sheep and run the fields.  A highly active dog like that should get at least 60 minutes of physical exercise a day.  Also consider age & climate, I wouldn't take my 5 year old cocker out for a long run in the middle of the hot summer. Whether it's playing ball, going for a walk or jog, dog park, playing frisbee, agility class or swimming, dogs need to burn energy and exercise for their physical and mental well-being.  My cocker spaniels will lay around and be very mellow all day if I wanted them to, but the minute I get out the ball or leashes, they get very excited to go out and walk or play.  I typically give them at least 30-45 minutes a day of exercise. 

So it's pouring rain all week, how can you tire your dog out now?
There are many indoor games that are mentally stimulating for your dog, such as Nina Ottosson's line of interactive toys that require your dogs to think and problem solve (yes, dogs DO problem solve).  Or any of the toys from the Busy Buddy line. You can also make up your own games to play. Play hide and seek inside, play ball inside, hide dog treats and teach your dog 'Find it' cue.  I play 'Sit & stay' games with my four dogs. Walking from one end of the house to the other, making them stay on the other end until I say 'Come!'. 

Why exercise my dog?
Well besides the positive health benefits it will bring YOU to be active, it will keep your dog fit, toned, overall healthier, less hyper-  which means less destructive,  and happy.