Monday, August 22, 2016

Can Reinforcement Backfire With German Shepherds?



"Behavioral Intervention" is the right phrase to be used when it comes to positive reinforcement to correct undesirable behavior in your dog. German Shepherd is a power breed and any kind of behavioral disorder, however mild it be, needs to be corrected at the very early age.

What is "Behavioral Intervention"?
Behavioral Intervention is a systematic plan engineered for a particular dog to teach the dog to change his or her specific behavior(s). Behavioral Intervention strategies are masterfully designed to target the modifications of specific habits, and simultaneously positively reinforcing the alternative desirable skills in your dog.

Positive Reinforcement, as we also call it Positive Motivation Training is a highly effective and scientific method to shape and/or re-shape your dog's behavior. It involves including a motivational item - "Reward", as we call it, into the training process to motivate the dog to act as desired on command. Canine behaviorists have noticed that food acts as a better motivator than any other motivation factor in a rewards based training process.

In Positive Reinforcement training methods , as a rule of thumb, the reward is presented  to the dog after the dog shows the desired behavior, thereby ensuring the particular behavior more likely to be exhibited by the dog in future for same situation(s).

The Behavioral  Intervention + Positive Reinforcement have to be very strategic and hugely demands a professional's attention. The reinforcement training methods can immensely backfire if implemented wrongly and unplanned.  There's a popular belief that too much of dependence on reinforcement by rewards gets quick results, but not long lasting. This is, however, a myth. Reward based reinforcement training has an everlasting effect if correctly done. 


However,  Reinforcement Can Backfire

Yes, with novice hands reinforcement training can immensely backfire, leaving your dog with reinforced undesirable habits. Novice trainers and newbies usually fail to identify the most significant points required for an effective Behavioral Intervention Plan. This will certainly backfire and adversely affects your dog’s learning process.

Most importantly, as a trainer you must identify the specific "behavior(s)" that actually need "intervention". In this process many new trainers mistakenly confuse with which specific behavior(s) should be intervene, and how should the Reinforcement Plan be formulated. Thus, many trainers have been noticed to have ended up with reinforcing wrongly, leaving the dog being reinforced on bad behaviors only.

Important points here...

Point - 1: Praise Only Those Accomplishment That Have Been Consciously Accomplished - Not Accidentally Accomplished.

Point - 2: Praising at The Right Point of Time is Important. Dogs Live on Time. Rewarding Your Dog a Few Minutes After The Desired Accomplishment May Have a Different Implication. Therefore, Trainer's Attention is a Mandate. 

Point - 3:  Motivator (Reward/Praise) Should be a Real Motivator. If The Dog Doesn't Get Motivated With The Reward Used, The the Reinforcement Training Process is Bound to Backfire. 

Point - 4: Priorities and Preferences Are Important. Not Every Behavior Needs To Be Treated As Undesirable at a Give Time.

Point - 5: Consistency is the Key To Success. If The Trainer is Inconsistent and Non-Repetitive in Rewarding, Then Reinforcement Won't be Effective, And May Even Backfire, as the Inconsistent Behavior of his Pack Leader (Trainer) Will Confuse Him.
  
Point - 6: Its Important to Consider Exercises and Socialization as Integral Part of Reinforcement Training. Socialization is Not a Separate Process.


Antecedents and Behavior

The two most significant areas of understanding for a trainer in the process of developing a "Behavioral Intervention Plan" for his subject are:

i. Antecedent(s): Antecedents are the stimuli/stimulus that triggers a specific behavior or a specific set of behaviors in your dog. These stimulus can be certain situations, any specific event(s), any particular person or any indecent. An antecedent can stimulate the dog to exhibit bad as well as good behavior. Therefore, it is important to identify the Antecedent(s) prior to creating a Behavior Intervention Plan. Wrongly identifying the antecedents may lead to incorrect reinforcement in the training process, thus resulting to backfire. 

ii. Behavior(s): Behavior is what the dog does being stimulated by an antecedent. An assessment of specific behavior is of utmost importance, because the reinforcement training starts off with identifying the particular behavior that needs to be intervene. A trainer should target one specific behavior at a time rather than targeting a set of undesirable behaviors. This makes Reinforcement Training by Behavioral Intervention more effective and easier. In this process of modifying one single behavior of the dog, a trainer may have to address a set of undesirable behaviors that are collectively responsible for the particular single undesirable behavior, and modify each of them.

Therefore, followed by identifying the Antecedent(s), it is important to identify the other behavior(s) that may be responsible for a particular behavioral issue. Failing to identifying all these correctly the entire Reinforcement Training session may adversely backfire.

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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Why is Dog Ownership Important After Retirement?

Karl Heyne and Heynfeld Varrgo (CL I ‘A’ ‘Z’ H-neg) (better known as Arko)

Post retirement dog ownership is something that can be considered as a kind of health advice – both physical and psychological health. Apart from some of the common facts that a well-bred dog can keep you active, and helps you fight loneliness after your retirement, a dog brings in a healthy structure and routine to your daily life and improves your quality of life.

Very recently the American Heart Association reviewed studies exploring the correlation between health and dog ownership. The findings concluded that owning a companion dog helps having a controlled blood pressure and healthy cholesterol level. Chances of obesity and developing arthritis decrease due to the need for regular walk.

Dog Ownership and Stress Management 

Studies have shown that healthy interactions with therapy dogs effectively mitigate stress in dog owners. As effect of such interactions with companion dogs the humans tend to generate stress-bursting hormone oxytocin and controls the production of cortisol, the stress hormone. This hormonal change helps a stressed out, retired person feel relaxed. Interact with the dogs through physical contacts like hugging and petting them produced better results.

A team of Italian researchers, noticed that introduction of a dog to Alzheimer’s patients showed gradual improvement in the patients' condition.

Live a Purposeful Life After Retirement

As already mentioned above, owning a dog brings in a healthy structure and routine to your daily life.Your dog lives on a natural structure in her everyday life, which is bound to bring in a structured discipline into your life too.Your pet’s dependence on you for everything – starting from the play and walk to food reveals immense opportunity for you to establish a consistent routine as a responsible pet owner in your daily walks of life.Your dog will lick you awake to go for a morning walk, followed up a free play session, and then asking for her meal. This keeps you active throughout the day and helps you feel engaged, responsible and productive after you retire from your working world.
How better can you kick start your day than by waking up with licks and hugs? Retirement should help you find a new way to wake up from your bed each morning. It is very pleasant way to start the day when some million dollar licks awake you up and you like to hug your dog, and find an immediate purpose to get out of bed.

Post Retirement Fitness 

A majority of responsible dog owners are dog walkers, who get at least 30 minutes of exercise on an average each morning and evening. Regular walks in the morning and evening are great ways to stay healthy – both physically and mentally. Regular walks will ward off possible health issues like obesity, diabetes type II, hypertension, arthritis and loss of volume and strength of skeletal muscle mass (sarcopenia).

Post Retirement - Mental Fitness and Social Life 

Depression is quite common when you are retired from your working life. It pulls you back from meeting friends and going out with acquaintances. Benefits of dog ownership treads its way here. Psychologists say owning a pet – especially during your retired life adds a little more responsibility which, in turn, can introduce a positive note to your life. Sense of responsibilities towards a pet that entirely banks upon you helps you feel your worth and significance. Moreover, he/she will like to develop new contacts and meet other dog owners in the locality. This means he/she becomes more and more social.

All these tend to keep the person in proper shape mentally. This is how dog ownership, in the retired life, is often implicated in relieving symptoms of depression– especially among elderly people after their retirement from working life.

 Karl Heyne and Heynfeld Varrgo (CL I ‘A’ ‘Z’ H-neg) (better known as Arko)

Direct Health Benefit

Research in the 1980s popularized the view owing a companion dog could have great health benefits in humans... including benefits ranging from lower mortality rates from heart attacks to lowering risks of asthma (in children) and reducing chances of developing cardiovascular conditions.
However, modern researchers have found no direct link between owning a pet and health benefits. Therefore, previous conclusions could not be scientifically supported by modern studies.

BUT

There’s still another proposal placed by modern researchers. According to them, pets help to enhance social interactions with more pet owners, thus have indirect effect on well-being. “Being Social” and “interaction with like-minded people” has long been recognized to have a tremendous beneficial effect on health by the way of alleviating symptoms of depression by reducing loneliness and social isolation.

Pets – especially dogs therefore act as a catalyst for social interactions, leading to developing broader social sphere, thus contributing to better physical and psychological well-being in older people and those who have just retired from their works.

Photos courtesy Noreen Symes
 

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Saturday, November 28, 2015

Vitamin B12 - How Important Is It For Your Dog?

A Detailed Talk on Low Blood Vitamin B12 (Hypocobalamanemia) in Dogs


Before delving deep into the importance of Vitamin B12 for your dog it is important to understand what this Vitamin B12 actually is, and why many well maintained dogs may suffer a deficiency of this Vitamin, and finally and most significantly how this deficiency affects your dog.


What is Vitamin B12?

One of the eight B Vitamins, Vitamin B12 (Empirical formula = C63H88O14N14PCo, also known as "Cobalamin") is water soluble complex chemical that supports the normal functioning of nervous system and brain. Another major role of Cobalamin is blood formation, which prevents anemia. It is one of the most essential vitamins that promote cardiac health, and breaks down the homocysteine, a non-protein α-amino acid associated with blood vessel and heart ailments. Cobalamin (Vitamin B12) has different chemical forms, and not all of them work equally good for dogs. Vitamin B12 can come in forms: Cyanocobalamin, Hydroxocobalmin, Methylcobalamin, Adenosylcobalamin.

Methylcobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin, which are naturally occurring and active forms of vitamin B12, are important for your dog's health. However, Methylcobalamin (mecobalamin, MeCbl, also denoted as MeB12) is the most active and easily absorbable form of vitamin B12, which makes it the best choice to treat B12 Vitamin deficiency in dogs in shortest possible time.


Where Does a Dog's Body Store Vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is mainly stored in the dog's liver, while other storage organs are brain, heart, kidney and spleen.

Vitamin B12 deficiency in dogs

 
 How Does Vitamin B12 Deficiency Occur in dogs?

EPI dogs (Dogs with Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency) tends develop tendencies of digestion disorders, due to malfunctioning of pancreas, and lack of secretion of digestive enzymes. Studies one different species have shown that defective gastric juice secretion process is one most common cause of food-vitamin B12 malabsorption. The continuous, incomplete digestion results in the presence of fermented food in the small intestine, which leads to build-up of harmful bacteria. The condition is known as Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO). Overgrowth of this bacteria eventually leads to B12 deficiency. This harmful bacteria binds the vitamins and leading to its unavailability for absorption and the dog eventually suffers from severe deficiency of B12 vitamins.


Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) deficiency causes depression, dementia, malabsorption disorders. Genetic defects in Vitamin B12 absorption is another reason, common in many dogs resulting from unscientific breeding. Hereditary selective cobalamin malabsorption in dogs constitutes one of the most common inherited conditions.


How Can Vitamin B12 Help Maintaining a Healthy Life For Your Dog?

Adequate amount of vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) is essential for your dog’s well being. Vitamin B12 is a powerful micronutrient that gives your dog optimal health benefits. It promotes healthy nerve and blood cells, helps strengthen DNA and maintains an overall healthy body system.

Methylation: Vitamin B12, along with folate and other B-Vitamins positively influences the process of methylation (a key biochemical process that is essentially necessary for the proper function of almost the entire systems of your dog’s body). Methylation builds hormones, proteins, and strengthen DNA, the molecules responsible for carrying the genetic instruction.

Liver detoxification: The liver uses methylation to detoxify substances and filter out the body toxins.

Promotes healthy nervous system: Adequate amount of Vitamin B12 protects the nerve and helps the nervous system to work properly. It maintains a fatty sheaths covering (Myelin – a protein sheath) around the nerve and keeps the nerve healthy and well protected, thus promotes a healthy nervous system.

Prevents pernicious Anemia: Cobalamin (vit B12) supplement prevents pernicious anemia that eventually leads many other health conditions, including tiredness, fragile immune system, dizziness, headaches, chest pain, upset stomach and weight loss, to mention the common ones.

Prevents brain damage: Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps prevents neurological destruction and prevents the chances of brain damage. A persistent case of Vitamin B12 deficiency in dogs may result in severe and irreversible brain damage.

Prevents metabolic disorders and nutrients malabsorption: Improper digestion, nutrient malabsorption, and metabolic disorder are common consequences associated with Vitamin deficiency in dogs. Addition supplementation of vitamin B12 is needed to avoid exposing you dog to these risks.

Prevents infertility in female dogs: Deficiency of vitamin B12 sometimes results in temporary infertility in female dogs. Vitamin B12 supplementation in such cases helps maintain fertility when you breeding your dogs.

Prevents cardiovascular disease: There are evidences that support the role of vitamin B12 + folic acid supplements in lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Persistent deficiency of vitamin B12 has association with the increasing risk of heart problems in dogs.


Hence, if your dog has been diagnosed with a hypocobalamanemia (Vitamin B12 deficiency) then he/she is exposed to the above risks associated with the deficiency.


Foods That Prevent The Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) Deficiency in Dogs

Dogs that are mostly kept on low quality commercial food and those that are kept only on veggies are prone to the risk of cobalamin deficiency.

Some of the dog friendly human foods that are rich, natural source of vitamin B12 are liver, brain, kidneys. Then eggs. Then cheese.

Beef livers and lamb livers should be the prime preferences if you are looking for natural cobalamin rich food for your dog. However chicken livers and gizzards can also make a great addition to dog’s diet.

A Summary of Dog-friendly Sources of Vitamin B12:

  • Per 100 gms of chicken meat (without bones) with the skin contains 0.30 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of chicken liver contains 21 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of chicken egg (raw yellow part) contains 2 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of goose egg (raw yellow part) contains 7.34 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of turkey liver (simmered) contains 28 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of beef tongue contains 3.9 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of beef (grass fed) meet with 30% fat contains 2 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb meat (without bones) contains 2.35 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb tongue contains 7 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb brain contains 11.3 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb heart contains 10.3 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb kidney contains 52.4 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of lamb liver contains 89.9 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12
  • Per 100 gms of plain yogurt contains 3.5 micrograms (approx) of vitamin B12

So here's some related reads:

What should your German Shepherd puppy eat?
Brief guide for dog food buyers

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

What Are Premium And Super Premium Dog Foods?

http://aringsburgkennel.blogspot.in/2015/10/what-are-premium-and-super-premium-dog.html


A Brief Guide For Dog Food Buyers

Often times dog owners, while looking for right kind of dog food, come across the phrase - "Premium Dog Food". What this word "Premium" indicates, when it comes to food for your pet? To keep it straight forward, it actually does not signify any kind of specialty in terms of quality and/or nutrition. According to Cailin R. Heinze - MS, VMD, DACVN, an assistant professor of nutrition at Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, there is no official definition for the term "Premium" related to dog foods. Words like "Premium" and "Super Premium" are mentioned on the pack and are used just as marketing tools. There are no guidelines and standards set for the dog food manufacturers to be met to make something called "Premium" and "Super Premium" stuff. In the US, all pet foods are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) establishes standards on which states base their feed laws and regulations, but AAFCO itself doesn't have any enforcement authority and doesn't perform any kind of analytical testing on pet food.

A discussion with one of the marketing executives of a reputed dog food manufacturer turned out to be kind of an argument, when he defined a "Premium Dog Food" as the ones where additional care is taken to ensure the overall nutritional needs for a pet. This means the pet foods that are not labeled with tags like “premium” and “super premium,” are the ones for which no such care is taken. Why are those products that are not formulated with care marketed, at the first place? On asking he said that the all products have almost same quality and kind of ingredients that that are accepted in the human food chain. Generally such ingredients includes food grade materials from beef, lamb, poultry, pork, fish, rabbit and game, vegetables, cereals etc.


So why should there be any reason to label dog food as "Premium"?

If, in the pet foods labeled as "Premium", there are no different ingredients of any higher value there is no reason to sell certain products with the tags: "Premium" and/or "Super Premium". Pet foods should only be sold with one single tag - "complete and balanced products"? Why using the tag "Premium" and/or "Super Premium" if a food is not "complete and balanced"? Why sell any food that does not meet the basic requirements to be considered as "complete and balanced"?
These are just words and phrases used to influence the buyers' purchase decisions. Hence it is not wise to blindly trust on what all are mentioned or pictured on the pack.


So what do you need to check for while purchasing pet food?

You should be aware of this fact: The federal law requires all dog food manufactures to list all the ingredients of a product in descending order of their pre-cooking weights. This means the most important and abundant ingredient, according to the federal law, needs to top the list... the second most abundant one should follow that and then the third one, and so on...

Being a responsible dog owner you should look for meat based protein that is easy to digest. As per the legal requirement, as discussed right above, such easy-to-digest protein should be mentioned only in the first few ingredients - means, as top of the list as possible. If you find higher quality protein mentioned within the top few ingredients, but if it is not easily digestible, then it is simply pointless to consider it as a good ingredient, suitable for your dog. The ingredient (despite being high quality) does not have any biological value for your dog in a real sense. You should not purchase the product - as simple as this!

However making a perfectly correct decision based on such analysis may not always work well. Making correct analysis of the dog foods is very hard. More so because dog food manufacturers hardly reveal the factual data regarding the quantity/volume of each ingredient used in a particular dog food.

Here are a couple of resources that you should read out:
 
FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) Pet Food Labels

Legislation Laid By PFMA (Pet Food Manufacturer's Association of UK)

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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Dog Lovers Communities on Facebook and Google Plus

http://aringsburgkennel.blogspot.in/2015/08/dog-lovers-communities-on-facebook-and.html

Hello dog lovers!

We are glad to invite you to join our official Dog Lovers Community on Google and also hope that you will Like our Dog Lovers Facebook Page. Please join hands with us to make this planet a better place for dogs and dog owners.

These communities are open to all. They reveal opportunities for you to share your stories about your dog. Share your dog blogs to help other dog lovers to gather knowledge and share your photos with and of your dogs. Share information from various resources and let us help of each other in becoming better and more responsible owners. Let us help each other to make this planet a better place for dogs and lovers of dogs.

Please abstain from posting images and videos of pet sufferings. Just go on promoting love for pets and responsibility towards them.

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Monday, August 17, 2015

How I Brought Rechie Back To Main Stream of Life After The Severe Psychological Trauma

Obese German Shepherd... This is a topic that has been discussed too frequently among the GSD enthusiasts all around the Internet. The problems of overweight is too common and unfortunately obesity has hit a few breeds more than the others, and German Shepherd is one of them.

Problem of obesity in a medium sized breed like GSD is often not identified and understood by the owners. The irony is that when a owner - if a newbie or if not much experienced, sees his dog he would often claim that his dog is too thin, and needs to gain weight. Sadly, the consequence is overfeeding that often leads to deformed structure, impaired digestive system, abnormal liver function, weight gain etc. You can click through this link - offering information about Food and Nutrition for German Shepherds... most important to know for an owner is science of Food and Nutrition For German Shepherd.


Relevant read:  How to care for your German Shepherd puppy



Unfortunately not much has been discussed about why a German Shepherd may grow skinny - or rather too skinny and doesn't recover or recover very slowly. I want to share some very unique experience - an incidence that had brought wrinkles in my forehead!


January 18, 2015, 5:46 AM - My Rex, my boy, my friend who taught me how to love a dog and how to be loved by a dog, left his last breath, breaking out hearts to pieces. The very next day of Rex's unfortunate demise, Rechie (Rex's Daughter) my darling girl stopped all her play. She ceased to eat, bark and move. What worried me most was that Rechie even stopped sleeping. She used to keep her eyes opened all through night. In just as fewer as only 10 days she seemed to have forgotten all her normal behavior, and she carried herself in a way as if we were all new to her. Her blank look confused all of us, including the couple of best vets whom I visited. The main medical concern was that her body mass index (BMI) had rapidly fallen to an alarming level.



Believe it or not... A few days later her condition went down to even worse than this

I am sure I am not the only dog owner to face this challenge. I talked to several vets and none of them have effectively diagnosed the problem. I admit that that it was beyond my imagination that a sudden emotional and psychological trauma could have such a deep impact on her health. I started analyzing the overall situations and series of incidences that had happened.


Finally, the condition went out of gear. Rechie stopped lifting her head and looking at her pack members (Reva - her mom and anybody in my family) who came near her. She showed no response to touch, and gave a blank looks, as if she didn't know anybody.  



How did I manage to bring her to the main stream of life?

The depth of grief is really not possible to measure. But I could understand that Rechie was severely impacted by the sudden and permanent loss of her most beloved partner, with whom she used to share her water bowl, toys, and personal times while reposing in her hall and playing in the yard. The trauma, for her, was overwhelmed by the suddenness of bereavement.

No vet here was eager to focus on this problem; they were NOT eager to consider her 'grief' as the root to other problems, although they said that she was in deep psychological trauma. They were rather more keen on prescribing liver extracts, appetizers, multi-vitamins and multi-minerals etc... all of which failed one after the other! 


http://aringsburgkennel.blogspot.com/2015/08/how-i-brought-rechie-back-to-main.html


I had left with no other option but to fight that war alone!

Here's my steps to bring Rechie back to main stream of life from the deep slump... 


My first step was to combat grief! I had no other options opened, but to opt for homeopathic treatment. I am NOT a vet though... I admit that I have scarcely sufficient or almost no knowledge of veterinary science.

Ignatia 200 (5ml/g) [Ignatius Amara]
Ignatia amara was a life saving medicine for Rechie. Ignatia was given as a grief remedy mainly, but this medicine also has a remedial effect on headaches, nervousness, insomnia , heart palpitations, gas, indigestion and weakness, all of which were my concerns.

I administered 5 globules of Ignatia, three times a day. On the 4th day, I could notice a slight betterment in her behavior. Rechie started looking at us, when called. On the 5th day she wanted to get us, although she needed help to rise, as she was too week to stand by her own. On the 6th day she had a biscuit... not a full one though.   

Fortunately Ignatia amara seemed to have helped Rechie successfully fight the trauma. I continued Ignatia 200 for several days and the condition went on improving. But there were other problems, making the situations more complicated.

Attention Patience and Love 
Extremely long periods of grieving aren’t often seen in dogs. But recovery may not be always too fast. It took almost over half a month for Rechie to come out of such a life threatening trauma. In such a situation an anguished pet needs additional attention, extra love and understanding to help him/ her cope.

Rechie gradually seemed to be recovering. Although apparently she was almost out of the trauma, but with more close observation I could still find a grieving heart. However, the depth of grief wasn't as much as the initial days. Ignatia could not be the only remedial process... she was given lavish love and company.  

I Introduced Rechie To Thoughtful Play 
This was immensely important as an integral part of the therapy & fortunately it turned out to be quite effective. The motive was to put light physical and psychological exercise. I started out with one of her favorite toys.

So what is that game and why I call it a thoughtful play? Simple... I wanted her to do some task through this play, and while doing so she was required to use her brain and thoughts. Her favorite toy (not just anything she liked) was chosen because she would do work to get it. The game is too simple... It's playing fetch. But this time I consciously threw it behind things like pile of leaves, branches of trees etc. so that she was required find it from the hidings, grab it and fetch it to me. An easy and simple thought stimulating game was really effective.

I made sure that she did not over exercise, as she was almost without food for several days. Initially 5 minutes exercise for her was more than enough.

It was really unimaginable that a sudden traumatic shock that the loss of a beloved pack member could bring to a dog. I faced a serious challenge saving Rechie and bringing her back to the main stream of life. It all required me to think from a dog's perspective, a make some constant and close observations to her behavior, even after she was apparently recovered.


There were some other serious problems

For Rechie the trauma was accompanied with several other problems that were really serious matter of concern. Among the other problems, the most concerning were:
 

Vomiting: Initially she had stopped eating completely and could not bear the sight and smell of food. When she started nibbling food, she could not eat more than just one-fourth a biscuit. And as soon as she ate she would puke out immediately. She was dehydrating fast, although she had intense thirst. She used to drink huge and puked instantly.

A Homeopathic approach was again found to be too helpful.

Arsenicum Album
Arsenicum Album 30, worked like magic! Being one of the most effective liver cleanser, Arsenic Alb. helped a lot not only by stopping vomiting, but also by controlling the water consumption and supporting the liver function. By administering 3 times a day I got brilliant results.  

Arsenicum Album works effectively to combat vomiting, restless anxiousness, indigestion, heartburn, swallowing difficulties, nausea and intense thirst. For animals it works great against skin eruptions, itchy, dry and flaky. For canines Arsenic Album is very effective in specific complicated conditions like toxicity due to drug, toxicity from vaccination, food poisoning. Arsenic Alb. is also very effective against toxins in kidney or liver.

Please Note: Arsenic Album 30 in a dose of thrice a day may also be effective in puppies with Parvo. 

Now that the vomiting was effectively checked, she had to be fed somehow, while she still could not bear the sight and smell of food. Fortunately, she did not refuse biscuits, and I took this chance; I gave her 7-8 biscuits and she slowly ate up all. I tried two more and she ate them too... drank some water. I could notice her drinking tendency quite normal. So that was her dinner for the night. I continued with Arsenic Album 30.

The next morning she tried to get up but she fell. She was helped to walk out to urinate.

She still continued refusing her food in the next morning (served with chicken meat and liver without bones). She fortunately ate a few biscuits again - a few more than the previous night!

A total loss of appetite (Anorexia) was again managed with the help of Homeopathic medicines


Gentiana lutea L and Hydrastis Canadensis (both Mother tincture): Both these medicines have proved to be highly effective against GI complaints, including lack of appetite, poor digestion and vomiting. To be specific Gentiana L and Hydrastis-Can work in slightly different indications.

While Gentiana L acts as a tonic to increase appetite in patients with anorexia and treats gastrointestinal dysfunctions, nausea, abdominal discomfort, Hydrastis Canadensis, on the other hand  has an immensely marked action on liver. It also works against poor digestion, feeble muscular power and obstinate constipation. Hydrastis also works against cancer and cancerous state.


NOTE: Why Hydrastis? Rechie, along with all this problems suddenly start showing symptoms of Pyometra (Uterine Infection) characterized by whitish vaginal discharge, accompanied with increased amount of water intake. I guess this was also a result of the psychological imbalance that Rechie was suffering from. Yes she's a middle aged girl and the chance of occurrence of Pyometra was too common for her at that age. But the severity of the trauma, in her case, resulted a hormonal abnormality, which again is a common cause of uterine discharge that eventually leads of cancer.  I took an additional support of Pulsatilla... Read Out How I Took Rechie Out of This Danger of Pyometra Too. 

Hydrastis Canadensis effectively mitigates of the chance of developing cancer and lessening its danger.


 Therefore for me Hydrastis Canadensis worked as a miracle drug, with favorable effects for several conditions - hepatic dysfunction, digestive dysfunction, poor musculations and chances of uterine cancer.  I continued Hydrastis for four months thrice daily before meals and gradually decreasing the frequency to twice daily before meals. I continued administering 10 drops each time. At the end of third month I noticed the gastrointestinal problems that accompanied weight loss was much in control. However I was continuing Arsenic Album simultaneously. 


Arsenic Album 30 Followed by Arsenic Album 200: Arsenicum being a common and effective remedy for both acute and chronic problems is indicated for stomach problems including sever indigestion, heartburn with burning, difficulty swallowing with nausea & intense thirst accompanied with vomiting and diarrhea. Rechie's specific problems - (failing to bear the sight or smell of food, feeling of great thirst; drinking much,  retching and vomiting after eating or drinking, anxiety in pit of stomach, nausea and dizziness, accompanied with small, offensive, dark stool) were all taken care of by Arsenic Alb. The feeling of great exhaustion after the slightest exertion was also noticed to be mitigated gradually.

Arsenicum album has proved to be effective for patients who are suffering from a sort of fear and nervousness owing to some kind of traumatic experience of the patient or may be owing to certain situations that have transformed the nature the patient into more than usually sensitive. Reichie's situation was much similar, owing to the sudden expiration of her closest pack mate - her dad, Rex.

Dosage that I followed for Arsenic Alb: Initially I started with Arsenic Alb 30, administering thrice daily prior to meals. I continued this dose for on month, followed by administering the same potency twice daily prior to meals for the next month. Then I changed the potency and frequency from 30 twice daily before meals to Arsenic Alb 200, administering thrice a week before meal. Then I reduced it to administering potency 200 twice a week. 


Note of caution: It can be used in different potencies -  6x, 30, 200. Arsenic Alb should be avoided for pregnant and lactating females. The dose of 6 to 200c may be safe if taken in intermittent (non-daily) by adult. Strictly avoid this remedy in puppies.

Other indications: Arsenic Alb is also indicated for itching, burning, swelling, skin eruptions. Dry and scaly skin problems can also be treated.
    

By the 4th months Rechie started showing good improvement and the time required for her to digest the food was not as prolonged as it was. I think I should have started off with my homeopathic formula instead of constantly dropping by the local vets who did not have time to spare to think deep to treat the problems at their root. However, I would still not encourage my readers to avoid going to vets and try treating their dogs at home. I had no other option but to take things all in my own hands. Even for treating the symptoms of pyometra, one of the vets suggested surgery to be the only single remedy. The second vet stated that dogs usually end up with uterine cancer if not treated surgically. Rechie's health condition was too feeble to survive the surgery. Again therefore I was left with no other option opened to take things in my hand. Read Out How I Took Rechie Out of This Danger of Pyometra Too.      

Here are some current pics (shot today - Monday, august 17, 2015) of Rehie. She is still little skinny, but recovering fast. Lord bless her!



aringsburgkennel.blogspot.com/2015/08/how-i-brought-rechie-back-to-main.html

aringsburgkennel.blogspot.com/2015/08/how-i-brought-rechie-back-to-main.html

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How I treated Symptoms of Pyometra Without Surgery

https://aringsburgkennel.blogspot.in/2015/08/how-i-treated-symptoms-of-pyometra_17.html

This post is linked to the other post : How I Brought Rechie Back To Main Stream of Life After The Severe Psychological Trauma. "How I Brought Rechie Back To Main Stream of Life After The Severe Psychological Trauma" was an article written to help readers looking for a way to bring out their dogs from sever trauma followed by the sudden loss of a pack member. The impact of the trauma was so sever that it resulted a hormonal abnormality, which was a cause of uterine discharge (white, thick and smelly like puss), accompanied with increase in water intake and licking her vulva more frequently and lick time stayed more than normal. I called up one of the reputed vets here, although already some of them (including him) had failed to take her out of the severe mental trauma that she was suffering from. According to him it was an advanced stage of pyometra and surgery was the only way out to save her life... and for that I would be charged some X amount of money, he added. He already knew about her fragile health and I was pretty much sure that Rechie wasn't in a state to survive the ovariohysterectomy.

With no help from my vets I hadn't had any option but to take things in my own hands again this time. Her treatment for GI dysfunction and trauma was already on and I could not get any professional assistance of a vet. You can read here how I managed to bring Rechie out of the mental trauma due to the loss of her most beloved pack member.

This time with the symptoms of Pyometra I had to bank upon homeopathy again - Pulsatilla

How I moved ahead to treat Pulsatilla

I initiated with 10 drops of Pulsetilla 30 twice daily before meals. I could not find any improvement in the first day, although it was expected. The second day was all the same. Fortunately in the third day I noticed some fruitful improvement, with intensity of the discharge was much gone. I continued with the same dosage for a week more. Surprisingly the discharge was effectively stopped. Licking was stopped and intensity of thirst was decreased. I continued Pulsatilla 30 for for another couple of weeks decreasing the frequency to once per day.

After a month I switched off to Pulsatilla 200, being administered once a week and continued this for next one month, followed by administering it once in a fortnight. I continued giving Pulsatilla 200 once in every 15 days for almost a month and the stopped as the problem was no more noticed. I am not planning to repeat again until the symptoms recur.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Herbal Cure For Dogs

Herbal Treatment and Remedies for Your Dog...
 

herbal cure for dogs

Despite the fact that most veterinarian practitioners prefer chemical medicines as treatment for sick animals, certain herbs have also been found to have worked immensely good on specific conditions in animals. Medicinal herbs and their different parts have potentially good effects on canine health - specifically on certain conditions. However, it is important to consider several factors (current health condition, severity of the condition, food habits etc.) while treating a condition for your dog. There are thousands of medicinal herbs that have been documented to treat human ailments, but not all of them are effective and safe for dogs. Studies have shown that dog's habit of eating grass is nothing wrong... rather a healthy habit; however it is still not clear why actually they eat grass. While some says that dogs have instinctual craving for the components of specific types of grass, the other believe that dogs eat grass to recoup their nutritional deficiency in their regular diet. Researchers have been working to unearth the secret of this behavior. Herbal treatment have been quite effective for dogs, but herbs should be used mostly externally unless specifically advised to administer internally as food. While administering externally you may use herbal products fresh or dehydrated and may be used as ointments, compresses, poultices etc. Before using any herbal products we suggest you consulting a registered vet or a herbal medicine practitioner.

Here are a few herbs and parts that are beneficial for dogs' health:
 
Aloe vera The aloe vera is a fragile and luscious herb that grows best in tropical type of weather. Aloe Vera is particularly effective to comfort dermal inflammation due to insect bite, minor to medium burns, skin sores like Acral lick granulomas, which is really difficult to treat. Most interestingly this herb has astringent flavor, which is why dogs usually do not lick it when applied on the wound. Owing to its anti-bacterial properties, Aloe Vera gell can be used on cuts and surgeries.

Aloe vera possesses anti-bacterial characteristics and hence can be used during surgeries to induce the curative process. Another advantage of aloe vera is that when it is applied externally on animals, they will refrain from licking that part of the body owing to the herb's astringent flavor.Aloe Vera is natural a natural pain and itch reliever. Aloe Vera can be administered interlally in very small quantity as laxative. However, the yellow sap that comes out from Aloe known as aloin is harmful for dogs.

Ginger Ginger alleviates nausea. If you dog is suffering from carsickness (motion sickness), you can administer him a capsule enclosing powdered or crushed/grated ginger at least half an hour before starting the journey. Ginger in small quantity is also effective in healing indigestion and can comfort the dog. Ginger is quite effective in preventing cardiac disease, colitis, bronchitis, arthritis and loss of appetite in dogs. Ginger helps control vomiting due to indigestion. If your dog is going through chemotherapy as a part of cancer treatment ginger can be used in small quantity to prevent vomiting tendencies. however, too much of ginger will prove to be harmful for your dog. If administered more than needed it may cause digestive, heartburn, diarrhea, belching, and even bloat.

Hawthorn Hawthorn effectively repairs heart muscles and is a very good medication for dogs having cardiovascular ailments and for dogs that have suffered a congestive heart failure. Hawthorn promotes a healthy circulatory system, controls blood pressure and lower arrhythmia (irregular heart beats).

Parsley Parsley is a good dietary supplement for dogs. It is effective controls cancerous growths. Parsley also helps to promote proper functioning of all organs - especially liver functioning. This medicinal herb has prove to be effective in cleansing the blood stream by helping flushing off the body's toxin. If your dog is having a bad breath, parsley will help eliminating the bad odor. All these properties of parsley make the herb an ideal .

Fennel Seeds Fennel's ability to sooth the digestive tract and helps digestion makes it a choice for many herbalists to treat gastric problems and digestive tract irritation, flatulence or colic not only in human, but also in dogs and cats. With a flavor very different from mint many dogs like the taste of fennel tea. Although a very safe herb, it is suggested not to administer fennel tea or seeds to pregnant or lactating dogs. The volatile oils in fennel may cause photosensitive dermatitis dogs and cats, but such cases are very rare.

Burdock (Arctium lappa) Burdock Arctium lappa falls in the sunflower family that acts as an effective and natural remedy for hepatic ailment (liver problems). Burdock is rich in minerals that are essential for a dog to grow and keep healthy, like silicon, phosphorous, iron, calcium, inulin, thiamine and riboflavin. Apart from these Burdock is also a very rich source of Vitamin B2. This herb acts as an effective blood purifier for dogs having the ability to flush out toxins from the system.

Calendula (Calendula officinalis) Calendula falls under the Asteraceae family and has been highly admired by herbalists for its potential effectiveness not only for healing wounds, but a wide range of medicinal uses. Calendula works like magic for restricting infection and infected wounds. This herb can be used for healing minor to medium skin infection, lesions, minor to deep cuts, insect stings and even for healing minor burn injuries. Celendula keeps keeping your skin of your old or ill dog in proper tone. Even for atopic environmental skin allergies in dogs that secrete white fluids with bald patches, calendula lotion or ointment is a great solution.

Coltsfoot This is another medicinal herb that can be used by dog owners as cough dispeller. Coltsfoot - that are abundantly found all through England, has been an effective remedy for cough as it helps to get rid of phlegm. Coltsfoot also helps in controlling spams, kennel cough, and distressed breath. However, coltsfoot contain alkaloids that may be harmful for dogs. It is important to consult a herbalist before you give coltsfoot to your dog.

Starthorn Starthorn is a stout herb with thorns. Juice of starthorn leaves are extremely helpful if your dog is suffering from anemia. The juice is highly effective in treating diarrhoea, dysentery, urinary discharges, inflammations, constipation, anuria and cough; also applied for gleet, lumbago and pains in the joints. Dogs suffering from biliousness (excess secretion of bile) characterized by gastric distress should be given starthorn leaves juice continuously. If your dog is undergoing treatment for urinary tract stones or kidney stone then starthorn leaves juice will enhance the recovery process. If your dog hasn't been suffering from such problems, then administering this starthorn leaves juice will prevent your dog from developing such disorders. All you need is to make a cup of juice with 6 to 10 leaves and mix it with chicken/ beef broth.

Papaya leaves extract Easily available, fresh papaya leaves extract aids digestion in dogs, like humans. Not much research have been made yet regarding papaya leaves for dogs, but researchers have proved that papaya leaf tea has anti cancer effects too.

Herbal treatments are mostly exercised to enhance the proper functioning of the body. It is not recommended to administer the herbs or herbal tonics in high volumes. Most importantly long term treatment is suggested for a proper cure. Many dogs avoid eating the herbs and herbal tonic directly. In such cases tablets made from herbs is the best option. It is important to know which herbs should not be ingested. Herbs that are not edible should not be given to your dog with or as food. However not all herbs that can be externally applied can be used for external use, because your dog can lick it. This page consist of names of herbs only that are not toxic to dogs if ingested.

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Saturday, June 6, 2015

You Will Always Remain in Our Heart - Dear Rex

You Will Be In Our Heart - Dear Rex

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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Wishing You All And Your Furry Children A Merry Christmas & a Great Year Ahead

Hello friends, Years of our togetherness has been a great inspiration for me to continue with this blog that is committed to offer best and well researched information that you may been looking for in the Internet. So, in this most auspicious and cheery time of the year I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

For the tunes of the past days belong to the past moments And coming year's songs await a fresh tunes altogether for all of you and your furry children!



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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Just a Few Shots of My Dogs That You May Love to See






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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

German Shepherd Puppy Raising Tips


Raising a puppy demands quite an in depth knowledge and both artistic and scientific techniques. Raising a German Shepherd puppy may prove to be a bit more different from raising any other puppies. Your need for a dog may not match that of mine. While many people need a German Shepherd Dog because they love the breed and want a great companion, others may need one for guarding a premise and yet another group will probably be looking for a GSD as a working partner. Whatever the need and thought may be, everyone will be looking for a puppy that will grow up into a dog with all characteristics typical to this breed… self assured, confident, trainable, intelligent, and courageous with a stable temperament. If you are planning for a German Shepherd puppy you should understand the typical German Shepherd characteristics, so that you can raise the puppy correctly. All of the characteristics that you will read in this section (the link of which is given) are mostly genetic or psychological. But raising your German Shepherd puppy incorrectly may spoil its characteristics traits – be it genetic or psychological or psycho-genetic. 


Remember, nearly around half or little more than that of your puppy’s traits are governed by its gene, but to get these traits pronounced environmental engineering (the way you raise your GSD puppy) plays a very important role.

Here are some tips on raising your German Shepherd puppy in the right way. 


Food, Play and Care – Most important of all is what you feed your German Shepherd puppy, how much calorie to burn and what type of exercise should your puppy be getting! Insofar food for your pup a balanced diet is an obvious recommendation. Contrary to the popular belief, it is recommended not giving too much protein to your puppy. High protein will enhance the growth rate and eventually your puppy may get exposed to the risks of developing anatomic defects, due to gaining too much weight that may not tolerated by tender bones. Here is a great read on diet management for your German shepherd. More insightful read on food for your GSD puppy


Free play is strongly recommended until your puppy reaches at least 7 to 8 months of age. Play session should be a fun for the puppy, but a training session for you. A happy puppy would learn a lot of tricks. If he loves to chase the ball, let him do that only after he does something desirably on command. This way the play would turn to be a reward for him for desirable actions. German Shepherds are trotting dog, and the structure has been developed through conscious and selective breeding to meet the requirements of trotting while on work. But power trotting is a big NO until your puppy become physically completely able for that.


Proper socialization - Socialization is important and should be started as early as possible – preferably at an age of 2 to 3 months. A German Shepherd not properly socialized may be a nightmare, while a properly socialized dog is sure make the best companion ever. Socialization is an act of making your puppy familiar to wide range of situations so that when it grows into an adult dog it will less likely to react with fear. A properly socialization makes your puppy grow into a more relaxed dog, with rich experiences in different situations including mingling with other animals, strangers, children, etc. Socialization with sounds, crowds, darkness, men, women and kids of various ethnicities and other strange situations is a must. There is actually no limit or degree of socialization. Wider the range situations you will expose your puppy, better it is for both of you. I hope you will love the story of how I helped a battered German Shepherd girl (Rani) to regain confidence.


Obedience Training – Whether you want a guard dog or a family companion, obedience training your puppy is a must. Apart from just teaching basic obedience commands like Heel, Stay, Come, Go, Fetch and Halt, it is important to proactively teach your puppy the table manners. If you have other dogs too, it is a must that all of them should know that the meal time is not a battle ground. Your puppy will always communicate with you. All you need is to understand it’s communication and use positive reinforcement training methods to teach your dog new tricks.


Establishing alpha membership in your pack – Raising a German Shepherd puppy doesn’t only involve training it well and feed it good. You need to become the alpha member (Leader) of your pack. You puppy should know that you are the boss of the pack and s(he) must follow you. Dogs are perfectly social animals and in the natural state dogs lead their lives in a structured (hierarchical) social order. The same structure needs to be maintained in your family, where your puppy should know who the leader is and what is expected from him/her. As a successful alpha member of the pack you need to be dominant over your dogs. This will maintain a balanced relationship with your puppy as he grows. Here is how to become the leader of the pack

 
Here are some great resources that will help you raising your GSD puppy more technically. Who doesn’t need to be a good owner his puppy? 

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Top Two Myths And Facts About German Shepherd Dog Training

Hi... I will not be talking about the importance of training your GSD - especially when it comes to "Obedience", because the GSD owners seem to have become far more aware of it these days. What I have come across recently while discussing with some of the community members is again a few more shocking stuff. While some believed that not all German Shepherds are trainable even with rewards, because they are genetically stubborn, others said that using food as rewards may not be the best option, because finally you will want your shepherd to act on commands without food.

Knowing that there are still some myths prevailing about dog training, I thought of publishing this post on Facts and Myths About Training German Shepherds.

Read on…

First

Myth: Some German Shepherd Dogs are genetically stubborn, which makes them tough to be trained well.  

Fact: Admitted that some GSDs may be more dominant than others, but that doesn’t mean that they cannot be easily trained. There is no suit-to-all dog training strategy. All dogs are different – and this is universally true and natural – just like human kids. Something that can work good for my puppy may not work at all for yours. A professional dog trainer tries to understand the specific traits that make a dog more dominant than his/her mates. As soon as he understands them he would be able manage the dog efficiently. Rewarding a dog for any good thing he does and refusing a reward for undesirable things will work good for almost all dog while training. But dominant dogs usually have tendency to disobey command. It is important for a trainer to establish the alpha membership (leadership) more effectively and train him/her in a separate area - away from animals and people. A dominant subject usually requires more time to learn tricks – but it’s not impossible.

Same problem may arise with puppies that are born with overly high prey drive. Very high prey drive will result in higher degree of distraction, which compromises the puppy’s attention paying ability, making the training little tougher. However, even in this case training is not impossible. An “All-Positive” GSD trainer will try to avoid environmental distraction elements while training. Usually the distraction elements for a high prey drive puppy are anything that moves – may be a butterfly, a passing by animals, a flying bird and even the weathered/ falling leaves from the trees. So now you know what it primarily needs for you to train a dog that are genetically dominant or having overly high prey instinct.

Second

Myth: Using “food as a reward” while training your German Shepherd may not be the right option, because the dogs has to finally act only on command and without treat as a reward.

Fact: Although many GSD owners still believe that their dog may become completely dependent on food to act, but this is a prevailing and most common myth about dog training. Food based reward training is a part of a very new concept, called Motivation Dog Training. Most of unsuccessful “food based reward training” results have occurred because of the fact that the trainers have been unsuccessful in using the food correctly while training a dog. Many dog trainers were noticed using the food as a bribe for an action to be performed. The rule is to use the food as a reward for the dog’s successful accomplishments of an action, which will motivate the animal to repeat his good work and NOT to wait for the treat (primarily) and work (secondarily).

Another most important step is to make the dog’s habit of getting the food reward eventually fade out, simultaneously letting the dog know that he will be highly praised for all of his great works.

Without applying the Motivation Dog Training rule properly please do not expect your German Shepherd puppy to work for you on command and not for food. Here is a great read about the basic rules of food based motivation dog training.

 Most important of all... your dog should never be left with a novice hand for training. Newbies and amateur dog trainers can be a real nightmare. Without professional knowledge Reinforcement Training can Severely Backfire.

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Sunday, August 3, 2014

Is Feeding Raw Food to Your Dogs Safe? - FDA

Risk of feeding raw food to your dogs.

The U S Food and Drug Administration - FDA has circulated an article about the risk of feeding raw food to your dogs. The raw food for your dog is composed of primarily uncooked bones, meet and organ meet that can be responsible for serious food poisoning. Here is what FDA has to say about feeding raw food to dogs:

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

How To Know Whether Your German Shepherd Dog is Ill?

Sign of healthy German Shepherd Puppy
A Healthy German Shepherd Puppy

Signs of Illness in German Shepherds And Any Other Dogs

If you are reading this post it means you already have a dog or planning to have one or may be some way connected to dogs. If you already have a dog or if you are looking forward to adopt one this post will help you become a better owner.

Signs of illness in dogs are the topics of discussion here. A strong power observation needs to be developed to understand when actually your German Shepherd's health demands your attention, and it depends on how efficiently you can identify the signs of illness that are holding back his happiness and smoothness of life.

The more you observe your GSD, the more you are going to learn about him. The better you know him, the owner you can become, and in turn your observation power will automatically be enhanced.

Here are some of the common signs that your German Shepherd may show when he is ill…

  • Mouth smelling bad: Smelly mouth is an indication of liver mal-functioning or internal health problem
  • Smelly ears: Smelly and waxy ears is a significant sign of illness.
  • Dry and rough coat: Heavy internal parasitic infestation and weak internal health adversely affect the coat condition.
  • Skin rash and patches on the skin: Internal parasite also adversely affects the skin condition. Bacterial problem, allergies and mal-nutrition causes different type of dermal problems. Here is how to do diet management for your German Shepherd puppy.
  • Bleeding gum: Accumulation of tartar can cause pyorrhea and bleeding gum.
  • Dry nose: Dry nose indicates fever and/or other health problems
  • Discharge from the nose and/or eyes: Your dog may have caught cold
  • Lethargy: Lethargy can caused by many problems, including insufficient diet, un-balanced diet or shortage of essential minerals and vitamins.

These may sound like just some basic signs of illness, but may be lead to serious health concerns if not treated at the earliest. Your dog may show other indications that may lead to even serious situations.

Sudden Loss of Appetite: As long as your German Shepherd is taking his usual diet normally, he is okay. Sudden loss of appetite may be the result of one or more health problems, starting from indigestion, irritation and pain to more serious issues that may need immediate attention. Dogs usually love food – especially his normal diet. Any deviation in the general affinity towards his food should be an alarm for you to call your vet.

Increase or Decrease in General Intake of Water: Dogs usually drink less compared to humans and this is normal. If your German Shepherd suddenly starts drinking more or less than what he usually intakes, you should be more attentive, and probably it’s the time for you to give a call to your vet. Serious health issues like pyometra in females, kidney problems, stomach problem and dehydration etc. may cause your dog to drink unusually less or more.

Unusual Panting With or Without Drooling: If your dog is panting unusually, then he is showing an inevitable sign of health problem and should be considered as a serious matter of concern. He may have ingested something that is poisonous for dogs. In such situation your dog needs immediate veterinary attention. Any delay may prove to fatal for your dog

Stained urine: Stained urine is an indication of kidney problem. If stained urination is accompanied with burning pain it indicates that your dog may be having Urinary Tract Infection. Stone in urinary tract also leads to painful and stained urine.

Frequently Vomiting: Frequent vomiting is an indication of fragile gastro-intestinal health. Blood vomiting should be considered too seriously and may indicate many fatal ailments. Frequent and repetitive vomiting with change in the color of stool should not be overlooked. May be you need to spare a thought over your dog's daily diet. Here is the science of food and nutrition for your GSD.

Distressful Breathing: Distressful breathing is an indication of many internal health problems, most common of which are respiratory tract infection - RTI, cardiac problem, lungs problem etc. Sudden imbalance of essential minerals and certain blood components may lead to many serious health issues and may start with distress breathing. Decrease in hemoglobin level also leads to distressed breathing. Presence of heart and lungs worms also leads to distressed breathing.

Change in Behavior: We cannot overlook the behavioral aspect. Any kind of physical irritation and pain is reflected through unnatural behavior in your dog. Behavioral signs like unpredictable aggression, restlessness, decreased tolerance level, lack of patience, lethargy, facing problem to stand from sitting, disoriented locomotion, staying overly aloof are some of the signs of physical displeasure.

Repeating… a powerful observing capability will make you more efficient as a dog owner. Keeping a dog is a big responsibility that many of us have shouldered knowingly and consciously. It’s just the awareness and knowledge that make you better as a dog owner than others. All kind of physical displeasure in your dog – be it serious or trivial are reflected differently, either through prominent or subtle change in behavior, or through other sings. Hope this piece will help you. Please feel free to share your experiences through commenting.

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About This Blog

All you need to know about German Shepherd Dogs. Read out what I have to share with you regarding the amazing German Shepherd Dog breed. Are Alsatian dogs and German Shepherd Dogs same? Who was Max Von Stephanitz and What is SV? Also learn a bit more in depth on German Shepherd Dog training tips, German Shepherd puppy care tips, German Shepherd Dog behavior, German Shepherd instinct, German Shepherd Dog standard and history of German Shepherds.
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