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Friday, December 21, 2007

We Chew for FUN!!

RUSTY & SMOKY: Since our folks signed up for different doggie e-newsletters, they are really beginning to understand us puppies better. For instance, sometimes we think they feel we chew up things, just to behave badly. But now they have learned that chewing is an essential and necessary part of our lives.

Our human mom recently read an article in the Iams e-news entitled Take the Bite Out of Chewing. She learned that we crave to crunch. As it stated "dogs are curious animals with heightened senses of smell, hearing and taste. They use their mouths to investigate objects that are making all those irresistible smells (and there are so many desirable smells out there for a puppy to explore), whether it's the leather on your shoes or the three-day-old food in the garbage bin." (When we were little bitty puppies, still with our doggie birth mom and other siblings, we use to go throughout the neighborhood and drag trash back home to enjoy at our pleasure. FUN, FUN, FUN!!! Unfortunately, our doggie birth mom's human parents did not approve of this activity, and we would be sternly warned. It's a good thing we have outgrown this hobby, since our new home has a fence all around, and garbage is not as accessible.)

In addition, our human mom learned, from the article, that "dogs, especially under 3 years of age, also chew as an outlet for their high amount of energy." Yeah! they finally get it! Heck, we will chew on one another, if we get bored enough. We are young, single, puppy guys who LOVE to mingle and get into stuff. So, as our folks have come to appreciate, destructive chewing can be lessened by a "healthy dose of daily exercise and mental stimulation." We like to walk and we like to play! And we need plenty of chew toys!! Because "no matter how much exercise dogs indulge in, it doesn't alleviate their inherent need to occasionally chew on something. Chewing feels good for dogs, and it is actually necessary for the health of their teeth and gums."

Now, the choice is yours - either you can provide an assortment of interesting chew toys, or we can find our own. If we do the picking, it might not meet your approval, but a puppy has got do what a puppy has gotta do, it's in our genes. And remember, like we have tried to tell our folks - if you tell us "Nooo!," and take away something you don't want us chewing on, please replace it with something we can chew on. Don't just leave a puppy hanging dry, or we will be forced to find something else of our choosing. You might not like that choice either, it will probably be another illegal object. Oh, well!!

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

We're Back!

RUSTY & SMOKY: We're back! Unfortunately, we have had to take a bit of a hiatus, since our mom's old computer broke down and went to that great computer afterlife (where ever that is). It has taken her a bit of time to get up and running on her new computer, and so we have been unable to say hello to everyone in awhile. She is still working on getting everything setup, so no new pictures of us guys yet. But, mom did find a very interesting article about vacations and your dog, written by the fine people at Pedigree (we had a can of their lamb and rice yesterday - LOVE IT!!!) Anyway, at some point the family is planning to go away, where we supposedly can't go, so the article gave mom some pointers on what to look for in a quality, high-class kennel (only the best for us high-class mutts - we might be mutts, but we do have class, or at least we like to believe we do).

Things to look for when boarding your dog at a kennel:
  • The establishment should have a current license, evidence that it is being inspected by a local government authority.
  • Ask other dog owners if they can recommend a kennel in the local area.
  • Go check the place out, to see if it is clean, dry, and sanitary. Ask yourself, "If I was a dog, would I be happy staying here, while my folks are away on some fabulous vacation." If not, we dogs probably would not be happy there either.
  • Exercise runs should be concrete rather than grass, so that they can easily be disinfected. (Who wants to pick up other people's germs and parasites, when they are trying to relax away from home.)
  • All the cages, gates, and kennels should be secure and in good repair. (Some of us canines are good escape artists - we might decide to go look for our folks and catch up with them.)
  • VERY IMPORTANT - Make sure the kennel requires current vaccination paperwork of all dogs on the property. (Don't put us in harm's way, there are some scary diseases out there.) Also, remember to vaccinate us in sufficient time, since some vaccinations take from 7-14 days to become effective. (Please plan ahead, people. A doggie's life could be at stake.)
  • Let the kennel know if your precious furry friend is on a special diet or medications. Also, be sure to leave the name and telephone number of your vet, just in case it is needed.
  • Don't just go dump us off at some kennel, with people we don't know, and go on a long extended vacation. We need to work up to these kinds of situations. Take us for a day trip there, or a weekend visit. Then we can get to know the people there, and you and we can decide if that is the best place for us to stay when you go on vacation.
  • Don't forget to leave us with a favorite toy or bedding. We already suffer separation anxiety when you leave us, so at least leave us with some kind of security blanket, something that reminds us of home sweet home.

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Friday, October 05, 2007

The Way We Puppies SEE the World

RUSTY & SMOKY: We puppies have tried to tell our folks that we experience things differently from them, but we don't think they always understand. So, we are somewhat relieved that our mom recently read a Pedigree Puppy Scoop Newsletter, that helped to explain our perception of the world. The newsletter covered all five senses:

  • SIGHT - Puppies can see in colors, but the colors are more muted to us. Now they know why we puppies get so excited when they get us a new toy that is in a really bright color, like bright red or green. Although we may not see colors as easily as humans, we can see clearer than people in dim light. And our eyes are very quick to pick up any movement.

  • SMELL - Our folks already know we are obsessed with smell. Sometimes we have to be coaxed to eat our dry food, if it doesn't smell the way we like it to (a little smell-inducing treat on top of the dry food helps out). Our world really is about smell, we sniff everything. They have been wondering why we sniff them when they come home. Well, they found out that puppies sniff you to learn more about you, where you've been and how you're feeling emotionally. If we sense you are not feeling so good emotionally, we will give you a lick of sympathy, and we are outta there (bad vibes rub off, and we already have enough to deal with as puppies). Oh, yeah, bet you didn't know that a wet nose is a good thing. The wetness of our puppy noses helps to strengthen our sense of smell because the moisture helps to capture different smells. You humans probably don't have that ability - don't be jealous.

  • SOUND - A puppy's hearing is a lot keener than a human. Sometimes they look at us puppies like we are crazy when we start barking, and they can't see anything. But usually we are always right, someone or something is coming. This is because, as puppies, we can hear sounds at a greater distance, and over more frequencies. So, just take our word next time, there really is someone or something out there!

  • TOUCH - Now they have finally found out about our special hairs: the hair on dogs below their jaws, on their muzzles, and above their eyes. These hairs are very sensitive and can actually sense airflow. That's partly the reason we hate it when you clean our puppy faces (the other reason is that we just like to give you a hard time). But you know we have our special places that we love to have touched, like our bellies. WE LOVE BELLY RUBS!!

  • TASTE - Dogs don't have a lot of taste buds, which explains some of the strange things we choose to eat. But we puppies can tell when something is sweet, sour, bitter, or salty (you know we LOVE sweets, we just don't get sweet things very often). Because our taste buds are not up to par, that's why we really value it when our food or treats smell good.

REMEMBER, this is vital information about the senses of puppies and dogs. Please keep it in mind when you are interacting with us, especially when you are feeding us. WE LOVE THINGS THAT SMELL DOGGONE GOOD!!

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