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AKC: Health

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Entries in this blog

Dog Anesthesia: What Every Dog Owner Should Know

Whether you have a young dog and you’ve scheduled routine neutering, an old dog who needs dental work, or an active dog who has torn a ligament – you may be scheduling a veterinary procedure that requires anesthesia. There’s a risk involved any time a dog is given drugs to put him under for surgery. So it’s important for responsible dog owners to be aware of potential complications, have a plan in place beforehand, and work with a veterinarian to ensure your pet’s safety. When it comes to rout

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The Best Dog Jackets & Sweaters

Just as we humans get cold in chilly weather, your dog may, too. And while Siberian Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, other northern breeds, and dogs with dense coats may be just fine in winter, short-haired, small, and light-bodied breeds could use an extra layer of protection. Old or infirm dogs may not tolerate the cold well, either. Luckily, there are dozens of types and styles of dog sweaters to choose from, so your pup can be warm and fashionable. Choosing the Right Dog Sweater Consider the ma

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The Best Dog Jackets & Sweaters

Just as we humans get cold in chilly weather, your dog may, too. And while Siberian Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, other northern breeds, and dogs with dense coats may be just fine in winter, short-haired, small, and light-bodied breeds could use an extra layer of protection. Old or infirm dogs may not tolerate the cold well, either. Luckily, there are dozens of types and styles of dog sweaters to choose from, so your pup can be warm and fashionable. Choosing the Right Dog Sweater Consider the ma

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Bloat (or GDV) in Dogs — What It Is and How it’s Treated

I hate this disease. When I first started as a vet, we gave a dog with bloat a 50-50 chance if he could walk into the hospital. Many were too weak and had to be carried in. They often died. Now, 30 years later, bloat still kills about 30 percent of the dogs it affects, even after extremely intensive treatment. I hope you never see this disease in your dog, but learning about what it is, why it happens, and how it’s treated may help your dog fall into the percentage of dogs that survive. Read on

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Why Is My Dog’s Nose Dry?

Most dog owners would probably tell you that a cold, wet nose on their canine companion signals a healthy pup. Likewise, many believe a dog is sick when his nose is dry — but is this true? Before we get into that debate, we first need to understand why dogs have wet noses. The answer is simple: wet noses work better. Dogs depend on their highly developed sense of smell to interpret their world, and scent particles stick better to moist surfaces. That wet nose also cools your dog down on hot day

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The Importance of Training Your Senior Dog

Chances are, when you first got your dog, you spent many hours training new behaviors and teaching him the rules of your household. Now that your dog is a senior, training might be the furthest thing from your mind. After all, isn’t good behavior one of the benefits of an older dog? Well, continuing or restarting a training program with your senior dog has many benefits, too. According to trainer, breeder, and AKC GoodDog! Helpline program manager Penny Leigh, CPDT-KA, your dog will be healthie

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Why Won’t My Dog Eat?

If your dog isn’t eating, consult a vet within 8-12 hours if there is any accompanying vomiting or diarrhea. Absent these symptoms, there’s a few likely reasons your dog isn’t eating, including emotional issues. While concerning, a dog not eating is an issue that often resolves itself, though it’s best to monitor closely. It can be very concerning when your dog isn’t eating regularly. After all, a good healthy diet is a key part of a happy life. So what exactly is happening when your dog ref

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Teach Your Dog to Enjoy Grooming

Many people see grooming as a necessary evil that’s not particularly fun. Unfortunately, many dogs feel the same way and are often afraid or uncomfortable with being groomed. But by shifting your approach to grooming, you can make it an activity that your dog actively participates in—and even enjoys. Husbandry training is a collaborative approach that will make grooming more enjoyable and less stressful for you and your dog. What is Husbandry Training? Husbandry training is a broad category th

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How to Groom and Bathe Flat-Faced Dogs

Flat-faced dogs, also known as brachycephalic dogs, are a favorite of many dog owners. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC) 2020 list of recognized breeds the French Bulldog and Bulldog rank second and fifth in popularity. Flat-faced dogs have broad skulls and an elongated soft palate. Other brachycephalic breeds are the Boxer, Pug, Pekingese, English Toy Spaniel, Shih Tzu, and more. Grooming and bathing are essential to your dog’s health, vitality, and longevity. Cleaning Facial Folds

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How to Crate Train Your Dog in Nine Easy Steps

We all want a well-behaved dog that doesn’t tear things up and goes to the bathroom outside — and dog crate training is an important part of that. A crate creates a safe environment for your dog and a space that belongs to them. While many people view crates through the human lens of being “caged up,” dogs are naturally den animals and most enjoy being in small, enclosed places. A crate provides them with a feeling of security, and when trained to use them from an early age, crates can help cal

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Which Sport Should You Do With Your Dog?

Are you inspired to figure out which sport you should do with your dog? When your dog participates in sports, they will improve and maintain their physical fitness level, sharpen their mental acuity, and build their bond with you. Doing sports with your dog also has benefits for you! Dog sports can help you improve or maintain your fitness, challenge your brain, and strengthen your bond with your dog. Take this 10-question quiz to help decide which AKC sport might be the best fit for you and yo

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The Best Puppy Toys

Puppies explore the world through their mouths, so they’ll chew anything they can sink their teeth into. By providing them with toys that indulge their teething instincts, you’re more likely to spare your shoes and socks from destruction. During a puppy’s period of rapid development, from 2-months-old to 10-months-old, it’s important to give them appropriate toys, and both dog breed and personality can play a role in what toys might become your pup’s favorites. If your puppy bursts with energy

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Hurricane Preparedness for Dog Owners

Natural disasters affect everyone, including your pets. If you live in a hurricane-prone area, you will need to make certain that you protect your dog from the unique health concerns that can arise during a storm. During a hurricane, dogs are exposed to many of the same dangers as people. Being prepared will keep your pet safe both during and after the storm. Make an Emergency Plan for Your Dog Long before disaster strikes, your family should have an emergency plan in place. A good emergency p

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Dog First-Aid Kit Essentials

Emergencies can strike at any time, whether you’re at home, running errands around town, or traveling. When they do occur, you should always be prepared with a dog first-aid kit, in addition to your human supplies. This list will help you assemble everything you’ll need in a first-aid kit for a canine medical emergency or health issue. Aside from these items, be sure to remember to include important paperwork, including a copy of medical records, vaccination records, and emergency phone numbers

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Why Dogs Eat Poop and How to Stop It

Of all the repulsive habits our dogs have—drinking from the toilet, rolling in swamp muck, licking their butts— nothing disgusts most owners more than pondering why dogs eat poop. Their motivation may not be to gross us humans out, but it certainly does. So much so, in fact, that poop eating is often a reason people try to rehome a dog or even opt for euthanasia. There’s a scientific name for this poop-eating habit— coprophagia (kop-ruh-fey-jee-uh)—and also both behavioral and physiological rea

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Indoor Scent Games for Dogs

Dogs experience much of the world around them through their sense of smell. On walks, and at home, our dogs constantly take in information with their noses that humans never even notice. Scent games allow dogs to channel their love of sniffing while enriching their minds. The aim of these games is to teach our dogs how to tell us what they smell. Also, for us to learn to read our dogs and trust they are correct. Some scent games can even be played in small indoor spaces like a living room. When

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Fun, Cognitive Training Games to Make Your Dog Smarter

There are lots of objectives when it comes to training your dog, but beyond the obvious skill and relationship building aspects to training, another advantage is that it challenges your dog and ultimately makes them smarter. And who says it can’t be fun? Beyond basic obedience training, there are also plenty of fun games for dogs that will be cognitively stimulating on top of being entertaining — for both of you! Read on to learn about several games and activities that will greatly benefit your

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What to Do If Your Dog Needs a Wheelchair

Have you ever wondered if your dog needs a wheelchair? Many senior dogs and dogs with joint issues show signs of mobility issues later in life. If your pet is showing any changes in mobility or exhibits pain when walking, talk to your vet immediately. Your vet may recommend a wheelchair. When you first learn your dog needs a wheelchair, it can seem overwhelming. There’s a lot to do, and many pet wheelchairs are expensive, but don’t fret. Buying a wheelchair for your dog can lengthen your pup’s

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Dog Wellness Trends: Which Are Worth Exploring?

CBD to calm anxiety. Mushrooms to boost immunity. Probiotics and plant-based diets. No, this isn’t a rundown of advice from your favorite Instagram wellness coach–it’s a list of rising wellness trends for dogs. Are these new trends truly beneficial for your dog, or are they merely passing fads? Get to know each trend and how it could impact your dog’s health. CBD for Dogs CBD is short for cannabidiol, and as its name suggests, it comes from the cannabis plant. But CBD doesn’t contain THC, the

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How to Potty Train Puppies: A Comprehensive Guide for Success

Learning how to potty train puppies at the right time and place is one of the most important first steps you can take for a long, happy life together. House soiling is among the top reasons why dogs lose their homes or end up in shelters. Few people are willing to put up with a dog who destroys rugs and flooring, or who leaves a stinky mess that you have to clean after a hard day at work. That’s why it’s so important to make sure that you do some research in advance on how to house train a dog,

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Dog Agility Equipment for Backyard Training and Just Plain Fun​

Whether you plan to compete or just want a fun, challenging activity to do with your dog, agility is a great form of exercise and bonding for both of you. In agility, a dog and handler complete an obstacle course as accurately as possible and in as short a time as they can. It’s a highly athletic event that requires training, teamwork, and concentration. But you don’t have to compete to enjoy it; backyard agility courses are a great way to provide exercise and stimulation and to build a trusting

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Dog Agility Equipment for Backyard Training and Just Plain Fun​

Whether you plan to compete or just want a fun, challenging activity to do with your dog, agility is a great form of exercise and bonding for both of you. In agility, a dog and handler complete an obstacle course as accurately as possible and in as short a time as they can. It’s a highly athletic event that requires training, teamwork, and concentration. But you don’t have to compete to enjoy it; backyard agility courses are a great way to provide exercise and stimulation and to build a trusting

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Fall Dog Grooming Checklist: How to Heal Your Dog Post-Summer

Some people lament the end of summer, holding on to the lingering warmth as much as they can, while others celebrate the arrival of cooler weather. Whatever your stance is, once autumn arrives, it’s time to tend to your dog’s post-summer grooming needs—from heat-damaged paw pads to insect-bitten skin and sun-bleached fur. Check off these post-summer grooming tips to best prep your pup for fall: 1. Heal Your Dog’s Hot Paws Did you spend your summer taking your dog to the beach or lake with you

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A Survival Guide for Dog Diarrhea

It’s not a topic anyone likes to discuss, but if you own a dog, chances are you have found yourself cleaning up a stinky brown puddle (or, not-quite-politely put, doggie “runs”) more than you’d care to think about. Diarrhea is a common canine affliction and it varies in frequency, duration, and intensity from dog to dog. You may not be able to totally prevent diarrhea, but knowing as much as possible about it might help limit the number times your dog has one of these unpleasant episodes and r

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A Survival Guide for Dog Diarrhea

It’s not a topic anyone likes to discuss, but if you own a dog, chances are you have found yourself cleaning up a stinky brown puddle (or, not-quite-politely put, doggie “runs”) more than you’d care to think about. Diarrhea is a common canine affliction and it varies in frequency, duration, and intensity from dog to dog. You may not be able to totally prevent diarrhea, but knowing as much as possible about it might help limit the number times your dog has one of these unpleasant episodes and r

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