Archive for January, 2011
Monday, January 31st, 2011
Health problems like arthritis often referred to as degenerative joint disease affects not only humans, but also dogs as well. Arthritis is the breakdown of cartilage, which causes the bones to rub against each other. This will cause stiffness, pain and loss of movement in the joints. As a protection dog owner hopefully you do everything in your power to keep them healthy. Including things like giving them medicine to prevent things such as heart worms, making sure they have good nutrition, and have a loving home. You will also naturally notice changes in their mood and behavior. Your guard dog will become like another one of your children, and if they begin to act differently in the slightest way, you will be able to tell. If you notice your protection dog not feeling too well, there is a possibility it could be arthritis. Arthritis affects one out of every five dogs in the U.S, and is a source of unbelievable chronic pain.
Being that your personal protection dog will not be able to verbally tell you what is wrong with them, it is your responsibility to look for signs of arthritis. Some signs that your dog will show you is favoring a limb and difficulty sitting or standing, these symptoms obviously result from the chronic pain they are in. Also, their joint deterioration will cause them to have stiff or sore joints, and also a hesitancy to jump, run or climb stairs. If your guard dog, for example your Belgian Malinois has arthritis they will have a large decrease in activity and will begin to sleep more and be a lot less alert. If your dog experiences these symptoms for more than two weeks, take them to the vet to be evaluated for arthritis. Therapies for arthritis may include a healthy diet and regular exercise to maintain a proper weight. Drug treatments will also help relieve some of the constant pain your dog is experiencing. The most common treatment for arthritis is non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). Also over-the-counter treatments, such as pills or foods which contain glucosamine and fatty acids have been known to relieve symptoms of dog arthritis. Regardless of how it’s done, making sure that your protection dog is happy and free of pain is the most important thing.
Friday, January 28th, 2011
Cancer, which is uncontrolled growth of cells on or within the body not only is harmful to humans, but it can also develop in dogs as well. As a guard dog owner, the last thing you want to hear is that your dog has cancer. Cancer can often be fatal, if not treated properly and in time. Commonly found in pet animals, the risk for developing cancer will increase with age. Almost half of the deaths of pets over ten years is a result of cancer. Unfortunately, the cause of most cancers is still unknown, making prevention near impossible. Cancer can occur in any location or body system of your guard dog, for example, the skin, stomach, kidney, bladder, brain and bones.
Advance in cancer research have helped to give us the knowledge of knowing different signs to detect cancer before its too late for treatment. Each type of cancer has its own symptoms and own signs to look for. Skin tumors in dogs are quite common, the most diagnosed are melanomas, lipomas, basal cell tumors and mast cell tumors. If you ever see a lump or mass of any sort on your German Shepherd protection dog, take them to the vet to be examined. Lymphoma is another common cancer in dogs, that affects the digestive system, which will lead to lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhea. This cancer can also affect the liver, resulting in lethargy, vomiting and a yellow shade to the gums and skin. If you notice your protection dog is constantly coughing and having a difficulty breathing, take them to the vet to have a check up. A sign to look for if you are for example the owner of an older female Belgian Malinois is a lump in the breast tissue. It is difficult to make an early diagnosis for abdominal tumors, which include hemangiosarcoma, mast cell tumors, lymphoma, and prostate cancer. Signs too look for in your guard dog are weight loss, weakness, pale gums, protracted vomiting, continual diarrhea, and abdominal enlargement. If you notice anything that could possibly be these symptoms of cancer, consult with your vet right away, it is better to be save than sorry. This is because if found early, most of these cancers can be cured with surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy or a combination. As a responsible personal protection dog owner, pay attention to your dog’s health and behaviors, it is crucial to keeping them healthy.
Monday, January 24th, 2011
Founded in 1907, K.N.P.V., otherwise known as the Royal Dutch Police Dog Association has the job of certifying dogs with coveted certificates. Located in the Netherlands (Holland) this association is divided into eleven provinces, each one having its own board. Each provinces’ board represents the members of the K.N.P.V. at the Head Board meetings. As of April in 1994 there were 509 K.N.P.V. clubs in Holland. According to many, Holland is a very dog loving country. Especially in the southern area where many of their clubs are located. In Holland, if you leave one of the training fields you are already headed into the next. That shows just how dedicated and involved the people of Holland are in the K.N.P.V. organization.
Holland’s clubs have always been different from other countries like Germany, Belgium, and France when they train dogs like the German Shepherd or Belgian Malinois. They prefer to hold onto the old fashion dog training, to make sure that only strong dogs are produced. In other countries, training programs have changed significantly over the years, but not in the Holland K.N.P.V. clubs. They have never changed their rules, exercises, or making sure that they are breeding qualified dogs like the Belgian Malinois. Unlike other countries that changed their program to fit the breed of dog rather than starting off and dogs fit for the program. The Holland clubs know that K.N.P.V. wants working dogs and not just show dogs.
The members do everything they can to make sure that dogs accepted into the program are qualified. Members of the clubs are usually people who previously owned a dog. Most of the time they come to the club for the social aspect, commodity, and to be with other dog lovers, or enthusiasts. Many of the club members are already into dog training before wanting to join. If they do have a pup or young adult dog, they must be qualified for the program unless they do not keep them. Either the dog is fit for the program and gets a title, or else he gets sold immediately. This may seem harsh to other people, but the main reason for doing this is getting the dog titled as soon as possible. The main goal for all members of the Holland clubs is to train their dogs in the proper way to make them strong and qualified. By setting this goal, the Holland clubs are great examples of how all K.N.P.V. clubs should strive to be like.
Please note that just because a German Shepherd or Belgian Malinois dog receives a K.N.P.V. title certification it does not mean that they are certified as a protection dog as the K.N.P.V. is only a sporting title. But if your protection dog has one of these prestigious titles it is an additional asset.
Friday, January 21st, 2011
For some reason your protection dog may need to take medications, weekly, monthly, or even daily if certain health problems develop. Giving dogs medicine can be a process that creates a lot of anxiety for both you and your protection dog, so it is important for you to know how to properly go about it. If you develop a routine for giving them their medication it will greatly decrease the anxiety. Here are some tips that will make medicine time much less stressful for the both of you.
First, your veterinarian will let you know whether or not your guard dog’s medication can be given with food, or taken on an empty stomach. If the tablet or capsule medicine can be taken with food then you can make what is called a “meatball”. A meatball is when you place the pill inside the center of a small ball of food, such as canned food or cheese. This will obviously disguise the pill and make your protection dog excited to eat it. It is a good idea though to test this meatball trick first to see if your dog chews or gulps it whole. Most dogs gulp the whole thing, but if they do chew it there is a chance of them finding the pill and spitting it out. If they spit it out the tablet or capsule may have become partially dissolved and hard to handle, which could waste that dose of medicine. Also, if the guard dog bites into the pill, it will likely leave a bad taste in their mouth making it harder to give them medicine a second time.
If your dog’s medicine can not be given with the meatball, there are other ways to make the process much easier. The medicine given to you by the vet will most likely be in pill, capsule or liquid form. Being that you can not conceal the medicine your dog will become much more anxious and harder to handle. Start by holding your protection dog’s head from the top using your less dominant hand. Then tilt their head backwards, and gently fold their upper lip over their teeth as you open their mouth. This will protect your hand from getting bit if they do decide to bite down, because they will end up biting their lip instead. Next place your thumb on the roof of their mouth, and take the pill in your other hand. Drop the pill or capsule as far back over the tongue as you possibly can. Immediately close their mouth and blow on their nose, this will encourage them to swallow. If you have to give your guard dog liquid medication, take the dropper and squirt it into the pouch between their teeth and cheek. Then try and hold their mouth closed and stroke their neck or blow on their nose to encourage them to swallow. Liquid medicine could possibly enter the dog’s windpipe, to prevent this from happening do not tilt their head backwards. Although giving your protection dog medicine may be stressful, it is an extremely important factor to keep them healthy.
Remember if you need to give your German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, or Dutch Shepherd protection dog medicine it is not a big deal and by following these simple tips you will be helping your dog in no time.
Wednesday, January 19th, 2011
As a protection dog owner, it is important to know how to properly groom your animal. If you are the loving owner of a German Shepherd, it is a good idea to understand their grooming needs. German Shepherds are one of the few breeds that will “blow their coat”, this process is often referred to as a blowing coat. The dogs who undergo this process, typically do not shed throughout the year. Instead, their undercoats will shed drastically about twice a year and is often thought as a fur explosion. The period of their blowing coat will last about two weeks. The vast amount of dog hair that is shed within these few weeks can sometimes be alarming. It could easily fill several garbage bags depending on you dog, and note that this process is typically much more severe in females. This intense shedding period will require you to brush your guard dog quite often. If you do not follow through with this, you will find large clumps of hair everywhere. At this time grooming can be very challenging so it is important to understand how to handle it in the best manner.
It is important to know when your German Shepherd’s coat will begin to “blow”, a good sign is when small clumps of hair begin to fall out all at once. To begin the grooming process, start by buying a brush called an undercoat rake. The tines in this brush will make it much easier to remove large clumps of hair. Make sure that the rake you buy had teeth long enough to reach down to the skin, a longer rake is required for dogs with longer hair. However be careful not to use one that is too long for dogs with short hair because you could risk hurting them. Bathe your German Shepherd dog every few days, a special blower can be used to help remove some of the fur as well. It is a good idea to keep your dog off of the couch, because the large amounts of fur they are losing will likely end up stuck to it. Also vacuuming every day to every other day will keep the large clumps of hair from ending up all over your house. A good piece of advice is to brush your German Shepherd outside, this will help to keep your house cleaner and make brushing a lot easier. Overall, during your protection dog’s time of blowing their coat, brushing them as much as you can is the key to minimizing the extreme amounts of fur they will lose.
Monday, January 17th, 2011
Your personal protection dog is like any other animal, and can act curious about practically everything. Dogs often express their curiosity by picking up different things with their mouths. Being that they are low to the ground, this allows them to have numerous opportunities to gobble up objects, that could become choking hazards. It is important for a guard dog owner to know if your dog is actually choking and what to do if this emergency arises. If your protection dog suddenly begins to run around in circles, pawing at their mouth, and is acting wildly and disoriented, they most likely have something lodged in their throat. These behaviors are what your dog does when trying to dislodge the item themselves. However, your protection dog may not be able to remove the object on their own, so it is your responsibility to step in and help them. Below are steps on how to save your choking protection dog.
First, if you think that your dog may be choking or have any doubts that they are able to breathe, call the emergency number for your vet immediately. Note that if your dog cannot breathe, they will not be able to cough or make noise. Once you get ahold of your vet you may be talked through first aid procedures, and asked to bring your pet in immediately. If for some reason you cannot contact your vet or until you get them to help, attempt to save your guard dog by using the following steps.
- Restrain your dog if necessary.
- Approach them slowly, speaking in a reassuring tone.
- Clear their airway by opening the dog’s mouth carefully. Do this by grasping the upper jaw with one hand over the muzzle. Press your thumb on one side of the mouth, and your fingers on the other. Apply firm pressure to force their mouth open. If you can see the object, try removing it with your fingers.
- If you cannot remove the object, large dogs like German Shepherds, Belgian Malinois, and Dutch Shepherds must be placed on their side on the floor. Place your hand just below the rib cage and press down slightly forward and firmly, then release. Repeat this several times until the object is dislodged.
Sunday, January 16th, 2011
Reno is a three year old KNPV Belgian Malinois import from Holland. He is a very hard independent dog, but at the same time very social and loves to spend time with his family (that has two young girls). Reno has a lot of street smarts, he works on the street each and every day and loves to go on bike rides with his family. He has a very high desire to please his handler, but at the same time he is calm in very day life. In his protection he absolutely devastating, he comes in fast and hard with a bone crushing bite. The pictures do not do Reno justice as he is absolutely stunning to look at. Reno would make a perfect fit for any one with a busy household.
View more pictures of this terrific dog at www.cck9.com
Friday, January 14th, 2011
As your guard dog gets older they begin to go through different physiological and physical changes. It is your job as a responsible protection dog owner, to make sure that they are provided with the proper nutritional needs to keep them healthy. Senior dogs will require a well balanced diet, which is lower in calories but still containing protein and fat. There are specially formulated senior dog diets that help to create a feeling of fullness. A diet that is higher in fiber, is the type of diet they will benefit from greatly. This is because older dogs are more prone to developing constipation, so they require a diet with 3% to 5% fiber. A tip to help increase fiber in their food is to add wheat bran. Along with their special nutrition needs, senior dogs can be given supplements which will help to supply them with some needed nutrition. A daily supplement like glucosamine and chondroitin, will help to support their joints. Any deficiencies that can develop can be prevented by a vitamin and mineral supplement. Extra antioxidants are also a good way to improve their diet.
Some senior protection dogs may suffer from lack of weight gain and disinterest in food. If you notice your German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, or Dutch Shepherd guard dog not eating well and becoming too thin then you should take them to the vet to be examined. If no signs of any type of diseased come up then you must try to get the dog to eat. Many older dogs have a hard time chewing large hard kibble, so try giving them smaller pieces that is moistened with water. You could also try adding broth to the food, to give it more flavor and become more appetizing to them. Some dogs prefer cat food and will eat it eagerly. However, cat food is high in protein and should be avoided, if possible. Formulating a homemade recipe with milk eggs, boiled, rice, vegetables, chicken, etc could be very beneficial to you dog’s nutrition. Do not try and create one yourself however, because the correct amounts of vitamins and minerals is crucial. Instead have ask your vet which type of homemade diet would be best for your dog. As your personal protection dog grows older, their needs change and it is your responsibility to take care of them properly.
Thursday, January 13th, 2011
After a long 12 hour trip we finally made it to San Francisco, California to deliver Boy. Boy is a three year old KNPV PH 1 Dutch Shepherd import from Holland.
Our clients were very pleased with him, and Boy acclimated very well with his new family. There is no question that Boy would sacrifice his life for his new family.
It is deliveries like these that makes my job so rewarding.
Wednesday, January 12th, 2011
Today, one of the most dangerous health problems facing dogs is obesity. It is your job as a responsible protection dog owner to do something about it. Dogs that are overweight are known to live unhealthy and shorter lives. Extra weight creates a unneeded stress on bones and joints, which could lead to arthritis problems. Dogs that are overweight usually are less able to exercise and do daily activities comfortably, because it becomes much harder for them to breathe. They are less able to resist infections, and they may be at a larger risk for problems during surgery, compared to healthy guard dogs.
There are many health problems that may develop due to obesity. One is Joint or Locomotion difficulties, this is when extra pounds and stress causes the the joints, bones, ligaments and muscles to become aggravated. This could in time lead to larger problems such as arthritis, hip dysplasia, and spinal disc disease. Heart and Respiratory disease is another health problem triggered by obesity. It is when excess fat tissue in the chest cavity and around the heart muscles. This causes the heart and lungs to work harder to simply provide the correct amount oxygen and circulation. Overweight personal protection dogs are also more prone to diabetes, pancreas inflammation, and liver disease. Heat Intolerance is when excess fat makes it more difficult for the dog to tolerate heat, causing them to feel uncomfortable quite often. Also skin problems can occur when rolls of skin build of fat deposits, they can often hold dirt and bacteria.
Your protection dog will most likely become overweight when they are not exercised well enough, and from eating more food than is required. Overeating can cause your dog to become greedy, bored, and overfeed often. If you feed your dog leftovers or give them treats a lot, cut back significantly because this behavior leads to obesity in dogs. You can tell if your guard dog is overweight by a simple procedure. Place a flat palm of your hand and feel their ribs, if you have a difficulty feeling the ribs, then they are most likely overweight.
If you discover that your dog is overweight, start by taking them to the vet to have them set a goal for your dog and recommend how much food he should eat each day. The food that you choose for your dog should satisfy their appetite but also contain the vitamins and minerals they need. Keep in mind that a gradual transition from their old diet to the new one may be needed. Do this by feeding them a mixture of the two and increasing amounts of the new diet, while slowly decreasing. Regular exercise is needed to increase the amount of calories they burn, do this by taking them for a daily walk or run. If your dog is old or in poor health, check with your vet first to make sure increased exercise is safe. Your protection dog may not lose the weight as quickly as you might think, so just be patient and keep sticking with the new routine. Eventually your German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, or Dutch Shepherd will be happier and healthier, and you will have helped them increase their quality of life.
Call Us Toll Free 877.687.CCK9 (2259)
/ Or Email Us