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Costco Pet Services « Costco Pet Care

Costco Pet Services

 

Welcome to Dog and Cat Pet Care, a new online, print, and print-on-demand magazine designed to help you care for your four-legged children. Get instant access to articles from respected experts in the fields of dog and cat health, training, nutrition, grooming, boarding, veterinary services, behavior and socialization, and more right from this website or click to download a copy of the digital magazine. We invite you to visit us weekly for fresh insights and ideas on how to make the most of your time with your treasured companions.

 

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Best wishes to you and your pet,

Marguerite Smolen
Editor

 

 Posted by at 6:44 pm

Headlines

Puppy Biting and What to Do About It
How to Clean a Dog’s Ears
Canine Epilepsy
What Type of Dog Is Best for You?
Adopting a Dog from an Animal Shelter
Buying a Purebred Dog
Other Big Stories
Food Aggression

Food Aggression

Dogs can become very possessive of their food bowl and food area, usually when they are eating but sometimes just in general. Start very young helping your dog realize that the food bowl is not going to be taken away. After you set the bowl down you can add food while the dog is eating, and practice picking the bowl up and setting it down again with more food letting the dog get used to your hands being near his food bowl. If the dog becomes territorial about the feeding area in general, try changing the feeding station every couple days and help the dog learn that no specific area is to be defended. You must be consistent in your puppy’s training, including with avoiding biting. You can’t try to teach the puppy that biting your hand is not okay, but then allow it to bite your hand when you are playing. Biting your hand must never be okay! And everyone who interacts with the puppy—your children, the babysitter—must also learn how to uphold that message. Proactive Training Some dogs simply are more easily provoked to defensiveness than others. Look for any signs of this when the dog is very young. If you feel the aggression is becoming worse instead of better or averting this behavior is beyond your ability, get help from a professional trainer .  A biting puppy becomes a biting adult, which is a difficult animal to deal with in the household, not to mention a liability.  Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

Socializing a Dog

Socializing a Dog

Socialization begins when the dog is a puppy. Responsible breeders will not only make sure all puppies are well socialized, but they also have a built-in population of puppies to do that with. If you purchase your pooch from a pet store, try to choose one that makes sure the dogs interact regularly and under supervision so that they can assist in a positive socialization process.   Always be cautious when exposing your dogs to other dogs, especially when introducing dogs that don’t know each other. If you are hoping to get together with a friend for some playtime for your dogs, keep both dogs on a leash until you are confident they are getting along. When you encounter another dog while walking your dog on a sidewalk, cross to the other side if possible and especially if either dog shows any sign of aggression—it’s not worth taking a chance with a dog you will never see again. If your dog has the appropriate temperament, attending a doggie daycare can help promote socialization with other dogs, if the doggie daycare is well-run by responsible people. However, not every dog has the right temperament for a daycare. Timid or anxious dogs may become fearful when exposed to a lot of other dogs and become more aggressive under stress. Also, like kids, dogs go through various developmental stages, and sometimes a pup might be more prone to anxiety or challenging authority than at other times. All of this needs to be taken into account where socialization is concerned. To learn more about how to properly socialize your dog, enlist a veterinary behaviorist or a dog trainer with experience in aggression. Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

Pet Health Insurance for Dogs

Pet Health Insurance for Dogs

The decision whether or not to carry insurance for your dog is one that is best done with good research. Pet insurance can be a blessing in an emergency when you don’t have to make a quick decision about your dog’s care based only on finances. However, pet insurance does represent yet another monthly bill!   Start your research by asking your veterinarian’s office what pet insurance companies they commonly deal with. Next, ask your dog-loving friends what insurance companies they use for their dogs. Get details on any experiences they have had with filing claims, good or bad. Then go online and investigate the websites of each of the companies whose names have come up in your research. The next, and perhaps most important, part of your research is to determine what level of insurance you want and can afford. Policies can be complicated. Do you want a policy that reimburses at least in part for annual vaccinations and other preventative care, often called “wellness” riders? Or are you strictly interested in plans with catastrophic coverage—that is, you feel you can afford the day-to-day veterinary maintenance for your dog like vaccinations and dental care but would want coverage in the event of an emergency where expenses can add up fast.   Insurance plans for your dog, like for yourself, can be complicated. Don’t hesitate to get on the phone and speak in person with a customer service representative who can walk you through the specifics—in fact, the ease with which you can get to a real person and their level of helpfulness might be a key factor in your decision on which pet insurance companies is best for you and your dog.   Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

Dog and Itching Problems

Dog and Itching Problems

The source of a dog constantly scratching itself can be several possibilities. A visit to your vet can help eliminate some things; also, microscopic diagnostics is the only way some causes of scratching can be pinpointed. Your dog may itch in one place, known as “localized”; many allergic reactions cause a more generalized itchiness, where your dog scratches all over its body. In order to treat the itching, your veterinarian will consider the following possible causes of itchiness. Causes of Itching Fleas are a common source of itchiness for dog. Although you may not have witnessed any fleas on your dog, some dogs have an allergic reaction to just one random flea. Mites—demodex or sarcoptic on the skin as well as ear mites—can cause relentless itchiness. Allergies can be seasonal or due to contact with an allergen, for example, in litter or food. Dry skin can cause your dog to itch. This condition should be treated from the inside out—it’s not oil on the skin but oil in the food that will help. Give your dog foods with fish oil in them or add fish oil to the dog’s food daily. Dry skin will take time to correct. Extensive scratching can cause skin trauma and lead to infected areas known as hot spots .Hot spots can be difficult to treat and are best avoided by addressing the itching as soon as it is noticeable. A soothing bath with oatmeal shampoo may provide temporary relief of itching, but the only way to relieve itching completely is by finding the source of the problem.   Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

Dog Diagnostic Procedures: X-Rays

Dog Diagnostic Procedures: X-Rays

Diagnostic procedures for pets are not so different from diagnostic procedures used in human medicine.   Some of the more common diagnostic methods include biopsy, microscopic parasitetesting, and radiography (x-rays) as well as other types of digital diagnostic imaging such as ultrasound, CT scans, and MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging. Some diagnostics, such as x-ray, require that the pet be tranquilized to ensure complete stillness during imaging and to allow for appropriate positioning for the x-ray. High quality x-rays are needed to arrive at an accurate diagnosis. As with human x-rays, the amount of radiation to which your pet is exposed is minimal, and of course increases with each additional x-ray. However, the increased ability to accurately diagnosis disease and injury typically far outweighs the amount of radiation exposure. Today’s digital x-ray technology allow for immediate reading of x-ray pictures on a computer screen—and immediate re-imaging if the radiograph quality (including position and contrast) is poor.   X-rays are considered legal medical documents, are part of your pet’s permanent medical record, and are stored in a precise manner. If you are referred to a specialist or decide to get a second opinion, you may request x-rays be released to the specialist veterinarian; typically, that specialist would eventually return those x-rays to your primary veterinarian to be sure the images stay with your pet’s medical records.   Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

Ear Infections in Dogs

Ear Infections in Dogs

When your dog’s ear hurts, he will likely scratch at it, giving you a warning sign. It is important to not self-diagnose and treat ear problems for several key reasons.   Cleaning ears is a great thing to do as regular maintenance. Many brands of ear cleaner are on the market—typically you squirt some into the dog’s ear canal, squish it around a little by gently kneading the base of the ear to break up built-up gunk, and then wipe the ear canal with cotton. However, if your dog is showing irritation with his ears, you need to be sure he has not ruptured the eardrum before squirting anything into the ear canal, which could cause permanent hearing loss.   Minus a ruptured eardrum, ear cleaning is often part of a treatment regimen for most ear problems. However, once again, let your veterinarian diagnose exactly what problem you are dealing with before using any treatment beyond basic cleaning.   Dogs suffer from two common ear infections—one is caused by bacteria, the other is caused by mites. Except for the general cleaning, these afflictions are treated completely differently.   Bacterial infections can be common in floppy eared dogs and even more so in those who swim—water gets trapped in the ear and bacteria just love that warm, moist environment. Bacterial infections will often be treated with an antibiotic ear drop.   Mite infections are caused by mites, which are living creatures. These creatures need to be treated with a miticide drop. Sarcoptic mange mites often need to be treated more aggressively, sometimes with systemic miticidal injections.   So even though both mites and bacteria would cause your dog to intensively dig at its ears, you need your veterinarian’s expertise to determine which problem you are dealing with before the best treatment option can be decided.   Some dogs have chronic bacterial ear infections—these are often accompanied by a smell. Your veterinarian may be willing to prescribe ear drops with a couple of refills to get you through a couple rounds of infections before your next scheduled appointment.     Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post

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