About Dogs

Proper nutrition, regular check-ups, and good grooming are key elements in assuring your pet stays healthy and happy.

 

There are many factors to consider when deciding what is right for your dog, such as what and how much to feed him and why it’s important to spay/neuter.

Spaying/Neutering

Dog's Diet & Feed Schedule

Dog Training Tips

Mauris sit amet

Spaying your female Dog at an early age greatly reduces her risk of developing pyometra and certain types of cancers, including breast cancer. Neutering your male protects him from testicular cancer, prostate disease (including cancer) and hernia.

 

It is good for you, too!

Sterilization eliminates the need to breed, producing a calming effect on the animal. Many aggression issues can be resolved or prevented by spaying or neutering your pet. Intact males tend to spray, (spraying urine around the house). Female dogs in heat can attract males from great distances, right to your doorstep! Likewise, intact males may roam in search of such females.

 

Spaying your female dog will eliminate the bloodstains on your furniture that may result from her cycle. Neutering your male will prevent embarrassing behaviour, like him mounting Old Aunt Gracie’s leg at Christmas. Millions of unwanted dogs of all ages are euthanized each year or live on the streets as a result of pet overpopulation.

 

Please help us stop pet overpopulation by spaying or neutering your pet. Spaying (technically called Ovariohysterectomy) is the surgical removal of the ovaries. Neutering (technically called Castration) is the surgical removal of the testicles. We advise that you neuter your dog at about 6 months of age. The younger the dog, the easier and quicker they recover.

Mauris sit amet

Read the labels. Dry adult dog foods should offer 24 to 26 percent protein and 14 to 16 percent fat; puppy foods will be higher in protein and fat. Formulas for less active pets contain lower amounts of protein and fat and higher amounts of fibre. Check the list of ingredients. A good-quality meat product should be listed as the primary ingredient, because, after all, dogs are carnivores. If a dry food’s primary ingredients are carbohydrates (wheat, corn, or soybeans) and there’s no mention of meat in the first few ingredients, you should look at another food.

 

Unless your dog is fully housebroken, avoid free access to foods during the day as he will want to eliminate after each meal. Free access to food should never be available to puppies.

Overeating, even nutritionally balanced foods can lead to obesity, and possibly, bone problems.

 

Feed Schedule

Puppies aged 6 - 12 weeks              4 x per day

Puppies aged 12 - 24 weeks            3 x per day

Puppies aged 6 months - 1 yr          2 x per day

Adult Dogs 1 yr - 5 yrs                    2 x per day

Senior Dogs 6+ yrs                         2 or 3 x per day

 

A high quality dry and canned food specifically formulated for his age. This is very important because dogs require different levels of nutrients at different stages in life. Puppies require more calories and higher levels of nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, and protein than adult dogs for growth. Look for packages labelled “puppy” or “growth” formulas.

 

With the exception of Expecting Mothers, Adults require lower levels of nutrients than puppies do. Puppy foods are rich for adults and can cause health problems later in life. For them, look for products labelled “Adult” or “Maintenance” formulas. Pregnant dogs should be fed the “growth” formulas.

 

While older dogs require the same nutrients as young adults, they need fewer calories. Many seniors have difficulty digesting regular dog foods. At around 7 years old (5 for large breeds) a dog’s kidneys begin losing the ability to handle waste minerals excreted through the urine. Most commercial bands offer “senior” diets to accommodate our friend’s special needs.

 

Be wary of packages labelled “for any age”. This is impossible.

 

Dry food often contains the most nutrients and is the best for your dog’s teeth. If your dog prefers canned or semi-moist foods, mix some dry ration in – or add some doggie gravy to it.

 

We use Nutro Natural Senior Formula Cans, with Nutro Dry mixed in and a sprinkle of cheese, or a semi moist “burger” style food to entice her appetite. If you use an all-natural food like this, be sure that it is no older than six months as the lack of preservatives will facilitate the loss of potency over time during the shelf life.

Dogs are pack animals, that is, they enjoy being part of a group or family. Obeying orders, from a dog’s perspective, is part and parcel of belonging; making them feel secure and letting them know where they stand in rank of the pack. Teaching your dog some basic commands is the best thing you can do for her self-esteem.

 

Every dog needs to know a few basic commands, but there is more to giving orders than saying “Sit” or “Come”. Dogs are not fluent in human language, although they can learn their names and a few short words. They take many of their cues from our body language. That’s why combing verbal commands with hand signals is a very effective way to begin.

 

Sit

Find your dog’s favourite treat and get his attention. Show him the treat in your hand and slowly move it up and over his head. As he follows your hand with his eyes, his butt will drift towards the floor and he will automatically sit. As this is happening, say the word “Sit” in a firm, but not angry tone of voice. Once his butt hits the floor praise him lavishly and give him the treat. Do this a few times a day for a few days and your dog will be sitting pretty!

 

Lie Down

Have your dog sit. Hold a treat in front of his face and move your hand towards the floor and back towards yourself a few inches (like a backwards L shape). Say the words “Lay Down” in a firm, but not angry tone of voice. As your dog follows your hand he with his eyes he will automatically lay down. When he does, give him the treat and lavish him with praise.

 

Stay

Once you have mastered “sit”, and “Lay down” it’s time to work on “stay”. While your dog is sitting, ( or laying down) show him the flat of your palm with your fingertips pointed upwards ( you’ll have a treat in the other hand, of course). Move back one step while saying the word “Stay” in a firm, but not angry voice. Return and offer a treat. Repeat hand signal and verbalization but this time, step back two steps, slowly increasing the length of time your dog must stay before being awarded a treat. After a while, when he is getting the hang of it, increase the amount of distraction in the room like noises and people shuffling about so that he will learn to stay when you tell him to, no matter what is going on around him.

 

Come

First, have your dog sit and stay. Start by facing your dog from a few feet away. Your hands should be at your sides and, of course, a treat in your hand. Say your dog’s name and the word “come” in a firm, but not angry voice. As you say “come” sweep your arm up and out to the side, (so he can see the treat) then forward to the chest. When he gets to you award him the treat and lavish him with praise. Over time increase the distance you are apart as you practice the command.

 

We know and understand that your pet is a highly valued member of your family. Our philosophy here is to treat all our patients with gold standard care, from the moment they come in our door, until they leave. This applies to both the medical and surgical patients, whether day patients or longer term.

Direct Contact:

Telephone: (090) 64-74020

Fax: (090) 64-73217

Email: midlandvets@eircom.net

Address:

Bonavalley,

Athlone,

Co.Westmeath

Copyright © athlonevets.ie 2017 | All rights reserved.