Categories
Dogs

Dachshund 101

Standard Dachshunds were bred to hunt badgers. Miniature Dachshunds were bred to hunt smaller game. The name Dachshund means “badger dog,” badger is “dachs” and hound is “hund”. They are classified as hound dogs and they originated in Germany. They are also called Teckel and Dackel.

In North America, they are often referred to as doxie, wiener dog, sausage dog, weenie and other similar variations.

If you’ve been considering adding a Dachshund to your family here are the things you should know.

Types

Dachshunds come in 3 different sizes, 3 different coats, a multitude of colors and patterns.

Size

Standard Dachshunds are the largest weighing between 16 lbs and 32 lbs.
Tweenies Weighing over 11lbs but under 16lbs.
Miniature Dachshunds weigh under 11lbs.

It can happen that two Miniature Dachshunds breed a Standard Dachshund and vice-versa. Generally speaking, it is hard to determine with accuracy how much your puppy will weigh as an adult. A good indicator is multiplying a three-month-olds weight by two and adding a couple of pounds.

Coat

Most people immediately think of a smooth Dachshund when they think of a typical dachshund. A smooth hair Dachshund has a short and shiny coat. They require very little grooming but they are known to have the most odor.

Longhaired Dachshunds have a beautiful long coat. The length of the coat will be different for each dog. Some have long fluffy hair while others may have medium-long hair. However, one thing they all have is fluffy ears, elbows and chest hair. They require regular brushing.

Wirehaired Dachshunds have wiry, short, thick, rough coats with bushy eyebrows and a beard. They require regular grooming to avoid matting and knots.

Colors & Paterns

Dachshunds can be red, cream, black, black and tan, black and cream, chocolate and tan, chocolate and cream, chocolate, wildboar, wheaten, blue (dilution of black) or Isabella (dilution of chocolate).
They can have dapple, brindle, sable or piebald patterns.

Red is the most familiar color for a Dachshund and can occur in all coat types. They can be any shade of red from blonde to deep dark mahogany. They have black eyes, black nose, and black nails. 

EE red/ diluted red has a pink/liver color nose and nails but otherwise, looks like a regular red and can appear in all coat types.

Cream-colored dachshunds are only smooth or longhaired. They are a yellowish blond color with a black nose and nails.

EE cream/ diluted cream has a pink/liver color nose and nails but otherwise, looks like a regular cream. Only smooth and longhaired will have this color.

Solid black is the rarest coat of dachshunds there is. It can occur only in smooth or longhaired Dachshunds.

Black and tan Dachshunds will be black all over with tan points. They have black eyes, black nose, and black nails. This color can be found in all three coats.

Black and cream colored Dachshunds can be either smooth or longhaired. They are black all over with cream points and a black nose.

Solid chocolate can be seen in all coat types. They are dark chocolate brown all over without any tan points and have a brown to light brown eyes, nose, and nails.

Chocolate and tan A chocolate and cream Dachshund will be chocolate all over with tan points. They will have light brown eyes and on occasion green to hazel eyes, brown to light brown nose. This color can be seen in all coat types.

Chocolate and cream can appear only in smooth or longhair. A chocolate and cream Dachshund will be chocolate all over with cream points. They will have light brown eyes and on occasion green to hazel eyes, brown to light brown nose.

Wheaten unique to wired haired Dachshunds, colors range from a dingy looking white to a butter color.

Solid Isabella, Isabella and tan, Isabella and cream can be seen in all coat types. Isabella is a dilute version of chocolate brown. They often looks silvery/tan or silvery/grey or even silvery/blue.

Solid blue, blue and tan is actually a dilute form of black. It can take on more of a blue/steel grey tone or a lavender/grey tone. They will have gray eyes, gray nose. This is seen in all coat types.

Brindle is a striped pattern.

Dapple is light and dark patches.

Sable/wildboar is self-color with an overlaid darker color.

Piebald is irregular patches of two colors.

The Dapple, Double Dapple and Piebald (white) dachshund patterns have been linked to several serious health issues. Such as missing eyes, eye size blindness, deafness, seizures and various skin disorders.

Blue and Isabella are known to have skin allergies, skin sensitivity, sunburn, thinning coat and skin infections.

Health & Lifespan

The average lifespan of a dachshund is 14-16 years old.
Rocky a Dachshund from California lived until the age of 25.

One in four will have IVDD which is Intervertebral Disc Disease. They are prone to back injuries due to their short legs and long spine. A good way to prevent this is by getting a ramp for your couch and bed so that they don’t have to jump.

They are prone to obesity and it puts them more at risk for IVDD and other illnesses. It is important to feed them on a schedule and not to overfeed them.

A few other illnesses like seizures, dental diseases and Cushing’s disease are somewhat common amongst Dachshunds.

Personality

Every Dachshund has its own personality and different traits but there are some general traits that most Teckels share.

With most Dachshunds, you should be ready to never be alone again because they are pack animals. Dachshunds are very social and can be unhappy when bored and alone. In most cases, they will have one favorite person in the household and they will want to be with that person all the time and want to cuddle. They are as loyal as they come. Most people end up sharing their beds with their Dachshunds because most are nearly impossible to crate train. Something to watch out for is that they are very protective of their favorite person and that can sometimes turn into jealousy which can lead to aggressive behavior.

They will have you laughing constantly with their antics.
If you’re watching tv, you will surely have your Dachshunds hanging around you in a funny way, on your shoulder, or burrowed under a blanket close by. They are little clowns, expect the unexpected and lots of laughs. They are very intelligent and can be mischievous.

If they don’t like the weather outside they will refuse to walk and they are very stubborn so once they’ve decided they won’t be walking they won’t walk. They are low to the ground so they are more sensitive to weather conditions. Some can not tolerate the heat while others the rain and cold.

They are known to bark a lot and they have a much bigger bark than you’d expect from a little dog. Not all Dachshunds bark at the drop of a hat of course. But they were bred to be hunting dogs and it is part of their nature to alert their owners when they feel it’s needed.

They are fearless because they were bred to hunt badgers and badgers are no joke. Dachsunds have the personality of a big dog because they don’t know they’re small. While they are cuddly and love being on your lap they are not lapdogs. An adult Standard Dachshund needs at least 60 minutes of exercise a day while a miniature needs at least 30 minutes a day.

The reason they are prone to obesity is that they love food as much as they love cuddles. They will eat as much food as you give them. They are ruled by their belly and their nose.

Training

Some people believe that your Dachshund will train you and not the other way around because they are notoriously stubborn. The reality is that training a dachshund can be easy or it can be difficult. It will largely depend on your patience and consistency. They are very smart and food motivated. Which means that you can bribe them with treats to train them most of the time. They are also clever enough to get you to do whatever they want you to do.

Dachshund owners will say that the three most challenging aspects of training a Teckel are potty training, separation anxiety and barking. There are exceptions but these tend to be the most difficult amongst the majority. There are many resources online to help with those issues.

Essentials

As with any dog, you will need a few things to get started and then you will learn as you go to see what your Dachshund likes.

Most harnesses will not fit your new Dachshund puppy. The easiest and best option is a step in harnesses for cats. Any brand will do, your puppy will grow in a couple of months and you will need a new one anyway. Simple and functional is the best.

Feeding high-quality food is essential. Many Dachshund owners swear by the raw food diet.
Not everyone is willing to go down the raw food diet route and there are many good quality kibble brands like Merrick, Castor and Pollux, Open Farm, Fromm, Orijen, Wellness, Taste of The Wild, Farmina and Acana. Just to name a few.
There is also the option of freeze-dried food which is said to be the next best thing after raw food. Some trustworthy brands are Primal, The Honest Kitchen, Orijen, Open Farm and Zeal. These foods tend to have higher fat content which is something to keep an eye on if your dog is prone to gaining weight easily.

Low calories training treats are essential. Ideally, treats should be as small as possible and have minimal ingredients. Crumps freeze-dried beef liver training treats are the perfect size for a Dachshund puppy. There are other brands that have small training treats but Crumps is the easiest to find.

Chew toys can be confusing because you want one that is safe and doesn’t have too many calories. For those reasons, Gorilla chews are the best because they are made of solid Java Wood and don’t splinter.

Most Dachshunds love cozy sleepers or cave type beds made for cats. The best advice you can get is always to buy your dog bed in person. You won’t know which kind your dog likes most until you try one out.

Dachshunds are amazing dogs, the majority of owners will say they’re like potato chips and you can’t just have one. It is almost impossible not to fall in love with them. They aren’t for everyone and they do come with their set of challenges but with love and patience, you can overcome them.

Categories
Dogs

Dog Treat Recipes

You’ve looked at the ingredients on the back of your dog treats, and now you’re wondering what you’ve been feeding your dog. Most of the ingredients you can’t even pronounce. You ask yourself if they’re healthy, and you assume probably not. Your assumption would be correct since most pre-packaged dog treats are filled with preservatives.

The good news is that you can make your own healthy version of dog treats. Ones that your dog is sure to love even more and the best part is that you will know exactly what’s in them.

Let’s explore the different types of treats you can make at home for your dog.

Dog safe Ingredients

Before we jump into the recipes it is important to know which ingredients are safe for dogs and which ones are not.

  • Carrots
  • Plain yogurt
  • Apples – No seeds
  • Bananas
  • Fully cooked eggs
  • Cheese in small to moderate quantities. As long as your dog isn’t lactose intolerant.
  • Cucumber
  • Zucchini
  • Bell peppers
  • Celery
  • Asparagus
  • Brocolli
  • Green beans
  • Bread and pretzel – Never give your dog raw dough
  • Sweet potato and potato – Cooked
  • Blueberries and strawberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Watermelon – no seed
  • Peanut butter – No xylitol 
  • Corn – Without the cob
  • Chickpeas – Fully cooked no seasoning and never from a can
  • Cabbage – Cooked
  • Fresh pineapple – Never canned
  • Mango
  • Cilantro, parsley, dill, basil
  • Plain cooked rice and pasta
  • Pumpkin puree
  • Popcorn
  • Honey
  • Cashews
  • Quinoa
  • Boiled chicken
  • Bacon
  • Boiled beef
  • Boiled Turkey
  • Boiled Pork

All vegetables should be grated or finely chopped.
Meat should be lean, boneless, and skinless.
Fruits and vegetables should be thoroughly washed and fresh.

Unsafe list of ingredients

It is very important to know what you should never feed your pups. The following list could make your dog seriously ill.

  • Chocolate
  • Yeast dough
  • Baking powder or baking soda
  • Cinnamon and nutmeg
  • Garlic and onion
  • Almonds
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Peanut butter that contains xylitol
  • Anything that contains xylitol – gum, candies, mints
  • Ice cream
  • Blue cheese
  • Shrimp shell including the head, tail, and legs
  • Avocado
  • Alcohol
  • Tea, coffee – anything with caffeine
  • Grapes and Raisins
  • Peaches and Plums
  • Raw eggs
  • Salt, sugar, spices
  • Raw potato or raw sweet potato
  • Cooked bones
  • Corn on the cob

Frozen dog treat recipes

By far the easiest treats to make are frozen treats. All you need is a blender, a silicone mold or ice cube tray, and an electric mixer.

Pumpkin delight

  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter with no xylitol

    Combine all the ingredients in a bowl using an electric or standard mixer.
    Scoop into a silicone mold or ice cube tray.
    Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
    Pop and serve.
    Voila, you’re done!

Pup cream

Super easy and safe ice cream for dogs

  • 2 cups frozen blueberries
  • 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt

    Combine the frozen blueberries and yogurt in a blender.
    Blend until combined.
    Add a little cool water if needed to blend.
    Serve in a bowl.

    You can replace the blueberries with any other frozen dog safe fruit. Cantaloupe, watermelon, and strawberries work great!

Dog approved peanut butter and jelly

  • 1 1/2 cups strawberries washed and tops removed
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1/3 cups of cold water
  • 3 tablespoons of peanut butter – no xylitol

    Put the strawberries and honey in a blender with the water.
    Blend until combined and you have a smooth mixture.
    Put a small amount of peanut in each ice cube tray slot.
    Add strawberry mixture to each ice cube tray slot.
    Freeze for at least 3 hours
    Pop and serve.

You can substitute the strawberries with any other dog-friendly fruit.
An apple would work great, remember to remove the core and seeds.

You can also substitute the peanut butter with pieces of banana.

Baked dog treat recipes

A little more complex than frozen treats but still easy to make.

Pumpkin cookies

  • 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour or chickpea flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter

    Preheat oven to 350°F.
    In a bowl combine pumpkin puree, peanut butter, and eggs.
    Use a hand mixer to combine well.
    Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour at low speed, beating just until incorporated.
    Working on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until it comes together. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness.
    Using cookie cutters, cut out desired shapes and place onto a baking sheet.
    Place into oven and bake until the edges are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.
    Let cool completely before serving any to your pup.

Pupcakes

  • 2 eggs
  • 5 strips of bacon
  • 2 cups of whole wheat flour or chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 vegetable oil

    Preheat oven to 350°F.
    Line muffin tin with paper liners or spray molds with non-stick spray.
    Put bacon in the oven cook to desired crispness.
    Remove from oven and remove excess fat.
    Let cool and crumble.
    Add flour, eggs, water, vegetable, and oil in a large bowl.
    Use an electric mixer to combine ingredients.
    Add ½ crumbled bacon to a bowl and fold in.
    Fill muffin tins ¾ full with mixture.
    Drizzle the remaining bacon bits on the top of each muffin tin.
    Place in oven and bake for approximately 30 minutes.
    Remove from oven and let cool on racks.

Meatballs for dogs

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 shredded carrots
  • 1 pound lean ground beef 

    Preheat your oven to 350°F.
    In a large bowl, mix together all of your ingredients. 
    Everything should stick together very nicely.
    Now form your meatballs, you can make them any size you want. 
    Place your meatballs on a non-stick cooking tray or non-stick aluminum foil.
    Bake in the oven for about 15 – 25 minutes depending on the size of the meatballs you made.
    Remove from oven and let cool on racks.

As you can see all of these recipes are extremely simple and don’t require many ingredients or kitchen tools. You can mix and match ingredients in all the recipes as long you make sure you’re using ingredients from the safe for dogs list.

You can now rest assured your dog is only eating quality treats. You made them with love and your pup will thank you for it.

Categories
Dogs

How To Pick The Right Dog For You

Pets are family. No matter how big or how small. And just as for the rest of the family, we strive to provide our pets with the best care possible. Before adding any pet to our family, we must decide that we can dedicate our time to them and love them unconditionally.

If you’ve been longing for a companion to fill your heart and your home, perhaps you’re now at the stage that you know you want a dog. But you’ve been wondering – what kind of dog should I get? There are many breeds and it can get confusing. This article will help you sort out through the noise to find the right dog breed for you.

Dog Breed Sizes

When looking for a suitable dog breed, the very first question you should be able to answer is “What size of a dog can my home accommodate?”

Generally speaking, apartments are only suitable for small dogs. A small home with a small yard will satisfy small, medium, and the exceptional few large breeds that are less active. In contrast, a large home, and a large yard – the choice is yours.

To give you a bit of an idea of what is considered a small, medium, and large dog breed, here are some example:

Small dog breeds (suitable for apartments) include Chinese Crested, Whippet, Japanese Chin. They range from 5 to 20 pounds.

Medium size dog breeds include Basset Hound, Bulldog, Dalmatian, Collie. They range from 20 to 50 pounds.

Large breeds include Cane Corse, Borzoi, and Afghan Hound. 50 to 150+ pounds.

Time

Establishing an amount of time that you can devote to your dog every, single, day is a very substantial part of making the right choice. Be realistic. Some dog breeds require an extraordinary amount of time, while others are extremely laid back.

The time per day required will depend on the size and breed of your dog. Some of the most energetic dogs require 2 hours of solid exercise per day while the most laid back one requires as little as 30 minutes per day. Mind you this does not include time spent with your dog or training him/her. This is pure exercise time.

If you add bonding time and exercise, an energetic dog requires at least 4 hours of your day. That’s a substantial commitment and a luxury only a few people can afford.

It is important to make sure the breed you choose gets enough exercise according to their traits. A bored dog is a destructive dog that can develop behavioral problems very quickly.

Husky

Time for Puppies

When it comes to puppies, completely different rules apply. A good rule of thumb is five minutes of exercise per month of age and up to twice a day until they are at least 1 year old. In other words, a 3-month-old puppy will need 15 minutes of exercise while a 4-month-old will need 20 minutes.

Smaller breeds puppies may only require 5 minutes of exercise per day until the age of 1. That being said, this is a rough guideline and each breed varies slightly. Exercising puppies too much before their bones stop growing could impact their growth and impede their development. This is especially true for the larger dog breeds such as the Great Dane.

Puppies

The very first 2-3 months

In the very first 2-3 months of ownership, you should not leave your dog alone at all. To leave a dog alone, you have to train it to be alone. This is a slow process.

If your puppy learns how to be alone at a young age, it will avoid having to deal with separation anxiety issues in the future. Almost all dogs that are surrendered to an animal shelter have separation anxiety and need to work on being left alone. Whether you are getting a puppy or an adult, this is something that you will likely need to work on with your pet.

Once the puppy has reached 2-3 months old, then you can begin with separation training. It is best to start slow. Leaving your dog alone for 10 to 40 minutes and gradually increasing the time to 3-5 hours. It is crucial to be patient here. It could take some time.

Most laid back dogs

Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, Dachshunds, Chihuahua, Great Danes, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Most high energy dogs

Huskies, Australian Shepard, Cocker Spaniel, Border Collie, Jack Russel Terrier, Dalmatians, and Yorkshire Terrier

Great Dane

Age

Deciding whether you want to raise a puppy or to jump right in and get an older dog is not always an easy choice. Both have pros and cons. Puppies will require constant supervision for 3-6 weeks.

Puppies need to potty every two hours. They need frequent feeding and socialization training so they can properly associate with people and other pets.

An older dog generally requires less intensive care than a puppy. That is, if they have been properly trained. Most will be confident enough to be left alone for periods of time and can be quite content spending the day napping. Depending on the breed and age, they might also just be happy with a nice walk each day or some cuddle time on the couch.

Cocker spaniel

Lifespan

Another aspect to consider is that certain breeds do not live very long. Breeds with the shortest lifespans include Great Danes, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Dogue de Bordeaux, Irish Wolfhound, Saint Bernard, and Blood Hounds.

These breeds have an approximate lifespan of 5-8 years. In contrast, Poodles have a life expectancy of 15.5 years.

Some breeds are prone to medical conditions that can be very costly.

Breeds that are most prone to medical conditions include:
Bulldog: Respiratory Problems
Great Dane: Bloat (fatal if not treated quickly)
Pug: Eye Problems, respiratory issues
German Shepherd: Hip Dysplasia
Beagle: Epilepsy
Dachshund: Back Problems ( 1 in 4 will have spinal issues)
Doberman: Heart Condition
Cocker Spaniel: Ear Infections
Chihuahua: Collapsing Trachea (common in toy breeds)

Australian Shepard

Character

Each individual dog is different and characteristics between breeds vary a great deal. You want to consider what general characteristic you want to have in your dog.

Think for a second and reflect on which of these is most important to you: Guard dog, affectionate, independent, hunting companion, a dog you can travel with, a cuddle friend who doesn’t need tons of exercise, sporty and high-energy dog, family-friendly dog, and a loyal companion.

Poodle

Hair

Dogs come in many different coats. There is long hair, short hair, no hair, wire hair, curly hair, smooth hair, double coat, and silky hair.

If the thought of having hair everywhere makes you cringe, perhaps a hairless dog such as an American Hairless Terrier is a good option.

Remember all dogs shed, even short-haired dogs, some more than others but they all shed.

Some dogs are said to be hypoallergenic such as Shih Tzu, Havanese, and Chinese crested. Although really the dirty secret between all experienced dog breeders is that there is really no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog breed.

If daily grooming sessions with your dog are a thought that brings you joy look no further than a Poodle, Afghan Hound or a Bichon Frise.

Poodle

Barking

Some dogs bark at the drop of a hat while others rarely make a peep. Some owners may consider a loud bark a good trait, while others not so much.

If you’re looking for a guard dog, you want a dog that can bark. If you live in an apartment and are going to be out at the office for good parts of the day, not so much.

Certain dog breeds are quite and are too friendly to care. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an example. Some breeds don’t bark at all – they have a different form of vocalization such as howling, “yodelling”, and other unusual sounds.

Generally speaking hounds and toy dogs have a tendency to be more vocal. American Foxhound, Dachshund, Pomeranian, and Chihuahuas are some of the loudest.

However, the biggest factor in how much a dog barks – even more than its breed – is how much the dog is trained and exercised. Despite some breeds being known to be frequent barkers, it may not ring true for your dog. Each dog is an individual and it will mostly depend on how you train them.

Dachshunds

Matching the natural predispositions of a dog to your lifestyle will undoubtedly fortify a special bond. Owning a dog is challenging but also very rewarding.

Now that you have enough information you can narrow it down to which dog breed you want and which breed you should get. If you’re looking for more information about different dog breeds you can check out this website.

Categories
Cats Dogs

How To Get a Great Pet Photo

Taking great photos of pets is a skill like anything else. It is learned through practice, patience, and often trial and error.

In this article, we will explore some basic techniques and guidelines that will help you master pet photography. Whether you want to get the perfect shot to frame or to use to create a pet portrait, we have it covered.

1. Burst mode + live focus/portrait mode

It’s nice to have a good camera, but it’s not a necessity. It’s entirely possible to take great photos of your pets even with a cell phone camera. What’s more important than the camera is the actual composition of the photo. To get good composition, you need to make your pet the center of the photo.

A super helpful tip is to go into your camera’s settings and enable burst mode. Burst mode will take a series of pictures with one click. This comes in very handy because pets move, look around, and facial expressions change. Take several burst shots from different angles and surely at least one of the photos will be a keeper.

Additionally to burst mode taking your photos on Live Focus (Android) or Portrait mode (Iphone) is the key to professional-looking photos. This feature is amazing, it focuses on your pet and blurs the background. You get to decide how little or much blur you want. There are also different styles of blur to choose from. If you haven’t tried out this feature it’s a must for breathtaking pet photos.

When you take a close look you can see how the background is slightly blurred so all the focus remains on the dog.

2. No flash and only use natural lighting

There are several reasons why flash should be avoided when taking photos of your pets. The sound of the flash can scare or distract them and ruin the photo. It can become difficult for them to trust you near a camera if you have a nervous pet. Most importantly, flash more often than not will make your beloved pet look like a red-eyed monster or worse.

When it comes to pet photography, it’s all about indirect natural light.
Your pet should be near sunlight, but not directly under it. A helpful tip to remember is to always shoot with the sun behind you. When the sun is behind you. Your pet will be evenly illuminated. Direct sunlight results in harsh shadows. Soft shadows is what you should aim for when it comes to pet photography.

This picture was not taken with the sun behind the person taking the photo. Resulting in improper lighting and harsh shadows.
The sun is behind the person taking the photo and they used live focus. The dog is the focus of this photo.

3. Be silent

Anything that startles your pet needs to be minimized. If your camera makes beeping sounds while you’re going through the menu, turn off the sound. Not to distract your pet and ruin a good shot turn off all sound from your camera or cellphone.

Great photos tell stories and capture spontaneous moments. You want to capture your pet’s natural state, not the bewildered look of a startled pet.

4. Take photos at eye level

It has happened to everyone to accidentally open the front-facing cellphone camera. Needless to say, we know that those pictures are never posted because they are unflattering. The same applies to pets. Pictures taken from too low or too high will make the proportion of your pet look off.

Find your pet’s best angle and take some flattering photos at eye level.

5. Try and try again

Patience and a pocketful of treats will help you and your pet enjoy the process. At the end of the day the most important thing is that you and your pet have fun. Take as many pictures as possible and you will be sure to have at least one that will be worthy of being framed or turned in a custom pet portrait.

6. Experiment

Get creative, add props if your pet will let you. Try different angles and different blur backgrounds.

7. Focus on the Eyes

When it comes to photography, the expression “Eyes are the window to the soul” rings especially true.

Unless you’re taking a picture of your pet sleeping. In that case, focus on the eyelids so the pet remains the center of the photo. These pictures tend to be the easiest to take because your pet is not moving around.

Keep in mind that a picture of a sleeping pet generally will not result in a good pet portrait.

8. Capture the personality of your pet

Every pet has a unique personality trait and you should try to display your pets unique character in the photos you take. Their reactions to different situations and different subjects are usually pretty entertaining. Try to show it with the help of photos.

9. Plan the session ahead of time

The secret to all good photos is planning. If you know your pet is sleepier during a certain time of the day it would be best to take advantage of that moment. If your pet is too hyper it will be hard to get a good shot. They will likely come out blurry.

10. Get someone to help you

A helper is always appreciated. If you can have someone to hold a treat out while you take some pictures it will probably help out.

Priceless moments

Whether your aim is to simply frame that perfect photo of your pet or to get a pet portrait if you follow these tips you can’t go wrong. Practice makes perfect. If you don’t get the photo you wanted the first time around don’t get discouraged you can always try again another day.

Categories
Dogs

10 Thing You Should Know About a Pomsky

There are so many dog breeds, some more fascinating than others. We will look into the unique traits of a Pomsky and the things you should know before making the commitment of adding one to your family.

What is a Pomsky?

A Pomsky is a Pomeranian and Siberian Husky mix. Due to the size difference of the two dogs, Pomskies are bred by artificially inseminating a female Husky with a male Pomeranian. Natural breeding would be unsafe.

This is an expensive process which is why Pomskies cost so much. This process is what makes this breed a designer breed.

The ideology of the Pomsky was to produce a small Pomeranian sized dog, with the coloration of the beautiful Siberian Husky. Since the breed is so new, most standards of how it should look or traits that it should have still haven’t been established.

For the time being, Pomskies can vary greatly in looks department and personality, even within the same litter. Breed standards aren’t likely to come any time soon. It is also important to note that a teacup Pomsky does not exist.

Appearance

Their looks differ greatly even within the same litter. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. Some dogs look more like a Husky while others more like a Pomeranian. There are only a few traits that the majority do seem to inherit which are pointy ears, a nice curly tail, as well as a long muzzle and a thick, luxurious coat.

When it comes to their coat, the Pomsky can be a variety of colours. As seen in the Siberian Husky and the Pomeranian. The most commonly seen colours are brown, cream, grey and tan, and countless combinations of these colors. Their eye color can be either lighter like those of a Husky or brown like those of a Pomeranian.

An adult Pomsky

Size

For the most part, Pomskies are considered to be medium size dogs. There is no way of knowing exactly how big the puppy will grow. They have been known to grow up to 15 inches high and can weigh up to 45 lbs. They are not known for being lap dogs.

To determine the possible size of your Pomsky, you would need to take a close look at his/her parents, but even at that, you won’t be able to know for sure which traits it will be inherited or how big they will grow. There are a few that will be slightly bigger than a Pomeranian but for the most part, they will be quite a bit bigger.

Activity Level

They have high energy which they inherited from their Husky parent. Huskies are one of the most energetic dogs that you could possibly get. As so Pomskies have a ton of energy. They require a lot of exercise and need lots of playtime. At moments you may even think they have infinite amounts of energy. Therefore, it is important that Pomsky owners are able to cater to their pet’s exercise needs. When they are not provided with an outlet for their energy, Pomskies can become destructive and develop various behavioural issues like any other dog breed. If you’re looking for a laid-back dog, then steer clear from the Pomeranian and Husky mixes.

Adaptability

Pomskies are highly adaptable. If your Pomsky has more Pomeranian traits and is smaller in size (under 15 lbs) they don’t have large space requirements and only have moderate exercise needs. This makes them good apartment dogs. On the other hand, if you have a Pomsky on the larger side who has more Husky traits, they will definitely need a yard because they require more exercise.

Pomskies can be vocal dogs that tend to be yappy if they aren’t properly trained. Socialization with other dogs and people is important, especially at an early age. They tend to do better in colder environments because of their thick double coat. They generally do not cope well with heat.

Personality

It is hard to generalize the personality of a Pomskies since they have not been around long enough. They can vary tremendously in temperament and looks within the same litter. Some people have reported that they tend to latch on to one favourite family member.

They get along with all humans in the household but choose a favourite. Pomskies can be nervous around strangers if they haven’t been properly socialized. Socialization is very important and should begin at an early age.

Life Span / Health

Pomskies are still a very new breed so it’s very hard to predict which hereditary health issues they tend to have. Pomskies can develop the common health problems of both its Husky and Pomeranian parents. Huskies are genetically predisposed to conditions like allergies, hip dysplasia, dislocated knees (luxating patellas), eye problems, epilepsy, heart disease, collapsing trachea, and skin problems among other issues.

Pomeranians often suffer from dental issues resulting from a buildup of plaque. If this is a concern, make sure to get a lineage ratio from your breeder to know which conditions your dog is more likely to have.

Life expectancy is about 13-15 years.

Intelligence

Pomskies are very trainable but may inherit some stubbornness from the Siberian Husky so they are best suited for experienced dog owners.

They are extremely intelligent and respond well to reward-based training methods. For most new dog owners, it’s important to start with the basics such as potty training and learning to walk on a leash. Training a puppy is not an easy task, but it’s important to teach your Pomsky manners while they’re still young.

Grooming

They shed a lot! Pomskies have a soft, fluffy double coat that requires lots of brushing to maintain. Brushing helps but you can still expect to find hair around the home. A lint roller will become your new best friend. Their thick coat keeps them very comfortable in cold temperatures.

Children and Other Pets

Some breeders say these dogs are the perfect family dog, while others suggest you should pay attention to small children, and recommend Pomskies only for single people and families with teenagers. All dogs have their own personalities and it is very hard to generalize. It is best to see with the breeder or what kind of temperament the dog has. They tend to inherit a high prey drive from the Husky which means they might like to chase smaller animals like cats. A Pomsky can get on well with other pets if you introduce them to each other when the dog is still very young.

If you’re looking for a laid back apartment dog, a Pomsky is a risky choice. While the ideology is to have a Pomeranian size and temperament who looks like a Husky, it is not quite the reality.

It is hard to predict how big a Pomsky will be. It is equally challenging to know whether they will inherit more Husky or Pomeranian personality traits. If you’re looking for a smaller Husky, Miniature Huskies do exist. Standard Huskies that were exceptionally small were selectively bred. Miniature Huskies weigh between 25-35 lbs and have the same temperament as a regular Siberian Husky. However, they are not apartment dogs. There is also the German Spitz that looks like a bigger Pomeranian, weighs up to 20 lbs and considered to be a good apartment dog.

Categories
Dogs

Bringing Home Your Puppy

Deciding to get a puppy is a big deal. A lot of time goes into making that decision. When you finally do make that commitment an exciting new journey begins.

First, you pick the breed you want to get. Then you find the breeder. And finally, you make a deposit. And now here you are anxiously waiting for the arrival of your new companion. Time slows to a crawl.

Use this time to get everything ready so that upon your puppy’s arrival they have everything they need. You also begin your quest to find the book of knowledge that will guide you through all your questions.

If you have yet to find such a book, this article aims to take you through preparing your home for a new puppy and the essentials needed.

Food

Your puppy will already be on a specific diet. The breeder will provide you with a small quantity of food that the puppy is eating.

Prior to bringing your puppy, look into whether or not to stick to the same food or feed your little one something else. Consider all the factors and what your dog’s specific breeds nutritional requirements are. To be on the safe side ask your vet for recommendations.

If you do end up switching your puppy’s food, you need to do it in increments as to not give the little one stomach problems. Puppies stomachs are notoriously sensitive, and you should monitor your puppy carefully during the transition to see how the reacts to the new food.

Bowls

Once you have the food you need something to put it in and the possibilities are endless! Ceramic, stainless steel, plastic, fountains, food dispensers, wooden stands, metals stands, and the list goes on. Spending time doing extensive research trying to find out which is best is for your dog is a deep dark rabbit hole.

Luckily, the truth is that it’s a matter of preference. The exception being very large dogs that need elevated bowls or dogs that have a special condition that requires an accessibility feature.

This choice should be based on looks, how easy the bowls are to wash on a daily basis, and how durable the bowls are.
In addition, make sure that the bowls are not made from any potentially toxic material such as soft rubber compounds.

Last but not least, pick a location where there isn’t too much direct sunlight. Otherwise, the water will get warm and this inhibits bacterial growth.

Lounge Area

This is the most fun part. Here you get to create a little area for your buddy.

For the lounge area, decide whether or not you want to crate train your puppy. If you do crate train, you have two options; getting a regular looking metal crate or getting a really fancy crate that looks like furniture.

If you decide not to get a crate, consider puppy-proofing your home and getting a playpen. This will be especially useful for the times when you leave the house, at nighttime, or when you are unable to supervise.

The lounge area needs a bed regardless if it’s in a crate or not. Besides, dog beds are adorable. A thing to keep in mind, consider the size of your puppy after a few months.

If you want to add a touch of personality, consider hanging a dog portrait on the wall above. This helps tie in the whole area together and give it a “finished” look.

Toys

Besides the essentials, toys are a very important part of a young puppy’s life. They stimulate and curb bad chewing behaviour. Start with only a few -one plush toy and at most two chew toys. Kong is known to have very durable chew toys. Too many toys clutter your home and besides, puppies usually have just one favourite toy. When it comes to toys, less is more.

Treats

If you are planning on training your puppy, you are going to need a lot of treats. Dogs are food motivated. What that means is that they will perform if they know there is a reward.

Always check the labels to make sure the treats are appropriate for your puppy’s age. Some treats are only for dogs that are over 12 weeks old.

Training

Training your puppy is crucial. There are several schools of thought when it comes to training. As mentioned earlier, a recommended option is positive reinforcement using treats. There are alternatives such as the clicker, however, generally speaking, they are not as effective as positive reinforcement.

Sign up your little friend to puppy classes to help with socialization and training. Socialization is a very important part of a puppy’s life. This will determine a lot of your puppy’s future characteristics.

House Breaking

Puppies will need to go to the bathroom every few hours. If you do not have a backyard, you can get pee pads and a pee pad holder.

You can also splurge and get fake grass looking pee pads. Do keep in mind that your puppy will not need these for too long.

Some people prefer using a pee pad without the holder as well. If you’re getting a holder you will need to wash it frequently and it is easier to mop the floors rather than clean a pee pad holder. This is especially true if you have a very large dog.

Leash

You will be taking your puppy out frequently at first just for potty breaks. Roughly every couple of hours. That being said, the walks will be short. Puppies get tired quickly. The rule of thumb for walks is 5 minutes per month of age up to 2 times a day.

When it comes to the topic of collar vs harness, puppies are better off wearing a harness. Puppies pull and don’t know how to be walked yet. Until that changes, a harness is safer.

As for the leash, it is only a matter of personal preference. The are no rules here.

Grooming

Keeping your puppy clean may be a challenge at first. They are curious and want to explore everything.
Here are the essentials that you are going to need – a brush, dog shampoo, and nail clippers.

If you are looking for a brush recommendation, I would suggest the Furminator. Yes, it’s pricy but it should last a lifetime.

Preparing for the arrival of your puppy is super exciting. I’ll admit that it’s hard to not get carried away. The best moments are yet to come, they are meeting your puppy for the very first time and when your puppy explores your home. Those are memories that you will cherish forever. It is an absolute joy to add a new member to the family. Many years of unconditional love await.