St. Francis Pet Clinic will be closing early Friday, 7/26 and will remain closed until Monday, 7/29. If you have an emergency call Sun Valley Animal Center @ 208.726.7777.
Dogs bark as a form of communication. If your dog barks, there is a reason why. It may be simply a response to a stimulus, like a jogger running by the house—or it may be your dog's way of asking for help. You need to find out why dogs bark in order to stop them from barking.
Read more: http://www.cesarsway.com/tips/problembehaviors/discovering-the-cause-of-barking#ixzz2ZQPHMXns
Always remember to keep these tips in mind while training:
Remove the motivation Your dog gets some kind of reward when he barks. Otherwise, he wouldn't do it. Figure out what he gets out of barking and remove it. Don't give your dog the opportunity to continue the barking behavior.
Ignore the barking Ignore your dog's barking for as long as it takes him to stop. That means don't give him any attention at all while he's barking. Your attention only rewards him for being noisy. Don't talk to him, don't touch him, and don't even look at him. When he finally quiets, even to take a breath, reward him with a treat.
To be successful with this method, you must wait as long as it takes for him to stop barking. If he barks for an hour and you finally get so frustrated that you yell at him to be quiet, the next time he'll probably bark for an hour and a half. He learns that if he just barks long enough you'll give him attention.
Desensitize your dog to the stimulus Gradually get your dog accustomed to whatever is causing him to bark. Start with the stimulus (the thing that makes him bark) at a distance. It must be far enough away that he doesn't bark when he sees it. Feed him lots of good treats. Move the stimulus a little closer (perhaps as little as a few inches or a few feet to start) and feed treats. If the stimulus moves out of sight, stop giving your dog treats. You want your dog to learn that the appearance of the stimulus leads to good things (treats!).
Teach your dog the "quiet" command It may sound nonsensical, but the first step of this technique is to teach your dog to bark on command. Give your dog the command to "speak," wait for him to bark two or three times, and then stick a tasty treat in front of his nose. When he stops barking to sniff the treat, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat until he starts barking as soon as you say "speak."
Once your dog can reliably bark on command, teach him the "quiet" command. In a calm environment with no distractions, tell him to "speak." When he starts barking, say "quiet" and stick a treat in front of his nose. Praise him for being quiet and give him the treat.
Ask your dog for an incompatible behavior When your dog starts barking, ask him to do something that's incompatible with barking. Teaching your dog to react to barking stimuli with something that inhibits him from barking, such as lying down in his bed.
Keep your dog tired Make sure your dog is getting sufficient physical and mental exercise every day. A tired dog is a good dog and one who is less likely to bark from boredom or frustration. Depending on his breed, age, and health, your dog may require several long walks as well as a good game of chasing the ball and playing with some interactive toys.
**Adapted from: http://www.humanesociety.org
All across North America, summer time temperatures can exceed 80, 90 or even 100 degrees in some areas. While these sunny days may be great for sunbathers and swimmers, the heat can prove deadly for our pets, especially when left inside cars. A “quick” trip to the store often results in owners finding pets suffering from heatstroke and near death. How can you prevent such a tragedy?
By: Dr. Jim Humphries, Certified Veterinary Journalist, Veterinary News Network
Many pets, especially our dogs, love to go for car rides. Whether it’s a quick trip to the local market or even a cross country excursion, hearing their owners say “go for a ride” or “go bye-bye” will set many dogs’ tails wagging.
Unfortunately, this favored activity can turn deadly when warmer temperatures arrive and when owners misjudge the amount of time they will be away from the car. Each year, dozens, if not hundreds, of stories of dogs dying in hot cars are reported by local media.
When confronted with the fact that their pet’s death was likely preventable, most owners will respond with statements like “I didn’t think I would be gone that long” or that they “didn’t know it was THAT warm outside”. When looking at the facts, the reality of just how quickly the inside of a car can heat up, even in mild temperatures, can produce some startling revelations for pet lovers.
It’s probably common sense to most people that hotter days cause the inside of a car to heat up faster, but few people realize that even with outside temperatures as low as 65 or 70 degrees Fahrenheit, the inside of the vehicle will warm uncomfortably in just 30 minutes. In fact, on a 75 degree day, your car’s interior will be at 100 degrees in just about 10 minutes and a blistering 120 degrees in a half hour! Despite urban myths, cracking the windows has little effect on the rate of heating inside the car.
An excellent demonstration of the effect a warm day can have on the interior of a car can be found in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbOcCQ-y3OY.
But, it’s not just the heat of the day that is an issue. Your pet’s overall health status and behavior can also contribute to how quickly he will overheat in the car. Veterinarians across the country have posted stories online about cases in which dogs have died when left in cars on days where the temperature never exceeded 60 degrees. Short faced breeds, like Pugs and Bulldogs, as well as obese pets, heavy coated breeds and senior animals will have less tolerance for extreme temperatures. In addition, excitable animals and those with separation anxiety issues may work themselves into frenzy, raising their body temperature to dangerous levels.
When in doubt, it’s probably best to leave your pet at home. It’s far too easy for a quick trip to become complicated and take more time than you intended.
Across the Internet, many well-intentioned people and groups will post pictures and posters that highlight the dangers of leaving pets in cars and education is a great thing. Sadly, though, the discussions on these sites about what individuals will do if they find a pet locked in a car can often turn into dangerous arenas of mis-information. People will recommend breaking into cars to save the dogs or even taking the pets away from the owner.
Currently, 14 states specifically have laws that prohibit leaving animals “unattended and confined” in a motor vehicle when physical injury or death is likely to result. While that is a great thing, it does NOT give ordinary citizens the right to smash windshields or take the pet from the car. Most of these states have included rescue provisions that empower police, peace officers, fire and rescue workers or animal control officers to use reasonable force to remove an animal in distress.
So, what should you, as an animal lover and Good Samaritan do if you come across a pet confined in a car?
First, if you are in a store parking lot, consider contacting the management of the store or even security. It may be possible to page the pet’s owner and have them return to the vehicle.
Next, call 911 and try to get the local authorities involved. This action will help lessen your liability if the pet is injured during the rescue attempt or happens to escape. Allow the police or legally designated person open the vehicle.
Finally, realize that not every animal in a car is actually in distress. As mentioned above, some pets may appear frantic, but others will lie quietly while waiting for their owners. It’s important to stay calm and not over-react – in some cases, the pet is not in danger!
**Adapted from https://www.myvnn.com
Every year, millions of unwanted dogs and cats, including puppies and kittens, are needlessly euthanized. The good news is that every pet owner can help make a difference. By having your dog or cat surgically sterilized so it cannot reproduce, you will do your part to prevent the birth of unwanted puppies and kittens and can enhance your pet's health and quality of life.
Spaying and neutering not only prevent unwanted litters and may reduce many behavioral problems associated with the mating instinct (e.g, marking territory, humping, roaming), but also reduce or eliminate the risk of conditions such as testicular cancer, prostatic hyperplasia, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and uterine infection. Reducing roaming may lower the risks of your dog being hit by a car, fighting, or biting people or other dogs.
Spaying and neutering are major surgical procedures and are the most common surgeries performed by veterinarians on cats and dogs. Your pet is given a thorough physical examination to ensure that it is in good health prior to the procedure. General anesthesia is administered during the surgery and efforts, including provision of pain-relieving medications, are usually made to minimize pain. You will need to keep your pet calm and quiet for a few days after surgery as the incision heals.
Like any surgical procedure, sterilization is associated with some anesthetic and surgical risk, but the overall incidence of complications is very low. Because changes in concentrations of reproductive hormones may affect your pet's risk of developing certain diseases and conditions in the future, your veterinarian will advise you on both the benefits and risks of the sterilization procedure.
Consult with your veterinarian about the most appropriate time to spay or neuter your pet based upon its breed, age and physical condition.
**Adapted from AVMA.com
Dr. Karsten Fostvedt