The Dog Owner’s Guide to Canine Liver Disease

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Canine liver disease is one of the causes of death in dogs and is something to be taken seriously by dog owners. The liver is responsible for a number of essential, important body functions and a problem with the liver will affect the overall health and well-being of your dog

Liver Functions

The liver has several important functions to maintain the health of your dog. Blood detoxification, waste removal and the production of bile to aid digestion of food are just some of these vital functions. The liver is involved in nearly all body processes and is a strong resilient organ that continues working even though liver disease in your dog may be present in early stages.

The liver plays a role with almost all biochemical pathways that allow growth, fight disease, supply nutrients, provide energy, and aid reproduction. Liver cells go through thousands of chemical reactions every second in order to perform all of this work. As the liver is involved with so many processes, it is an obvious target to be affected by different diseases. Liver function is vital to life.

Milk Thistle for Dog Liver DiseaseIn Stock

Milk Thistle for Dog Liver Disease

Natural support for liver disease and liver detox in dogs

A healthy liver is important for dogs because it detoxifies any chemicals or pesticides they may be exposed to, toxins in food they scavenge, and chemical prescription drugs.

Canine Milk Thistle is essential for dogs with liver disease, and for dogs on medication for:

  • heart worm prevention
  • steroids
  • pain and anti-inflammatory medications

No known side effects: gentle for long-term use
1 bottle is a 2-month supply for most dogs

Day after day for every second of life, the liver processes raw materials and manufactures the building blocks of the body. It recycles old material to make new, and detoxifies body waste. Because of its importance in the dog’s body and the far-reaching effects of its activity, symptoms of liver disease are usually non-specific and unpredictable. The liver is susceptible to a wide range of diseases including degenerative disease, viral and bacterial infections, neoplastic disease (tumor), and toxicity.

Liver conditions are difficult to diagnose as it has an incredible life preserving capacity, which means it can easily continue to perform its function with up to 70 or 80% of the liver affected by disease. It has a phenomenal reserve capacity, which often means that by the time liver disease is diagnosed; it is very advanced meaning the condition may be untreatable in the worst cases. While it is of tremendous benefit that the liver can keep your dog alive despite an overwhelming infection or a tumor, it means the option of treating symptoms early is rare when a better outcome could be expected. However, the liver is the only organ in your dog’s body that is capable of complete regeneration, so if treatment is successful, the chances of complete recovery are high.



The liver is the organ that co-ordinates the metabolism of fat, carbohydrate, and protein. This is performed alongside the circulatory system, the lymphatic system, and the endocrine (hormone) system. Metabolism is dependent on a healthy liver.


The liver produces all proteins except for those synthesized by the immune system. It does this by assembling amino acids into protein. The main protein produced by the liver is called albumin.

Normal albumin in the bloodstream is important for many bodily functions. Without it being produced by the liver properly, it can cause fluid in arteries and veins to leak out and pool in the abdominal and chest cavities. Albumin also transports calcium, vitamins, hormones, fatty acids, bilirubin, and many drug medications through the bloodstream.

One consistent finding with liver disease is low protein levels. This low level occurs only when the liver has been diseased over a long period of time as aforementioned; the liver has a remarkable capacity to continue working while diseased.


With the aid of the hormones insulin and glucagon, the liver maintains normal blood glucose levels. Abnormalities that affect blood glucose level result from insulinoma or diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes).

Glucose that is stored in liver cells is called glycogen. It acts as reservoir during times when carbohydrate intake is low (fasting or starvation). The liver can also manufacture glucose from proteins or fats. When your dog has liver disease, his body may have difficulty regulating blood glucose levels which leads to hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). Because of these abnormalities, intake of calories and diet are an important aspect of liver disease.


The liver regulates fats (called fatty acids) in the bloodstream. Excess amounts of carbohydrate and protein are converted into fatty acids. From the fatty acids, the liver produces cholesterol, which is necessary for many functions particularly the sex hormones, and cortisone.


There are times when your dog’s liver may have to fight very hard against toxicity. Any type of poisoning from weed killer or car anti-freeze your dog may ingest will have a serious effect on the liver as it tries to flush out the poison. Often the impact of poisoning is too severe for the liver to fight back and sadly the outcome usually results in death or the dog being euthanized. It is important to protect your dog from access to any toxic substances and to be aware that dogs do not tolerate some drug medications like humans so care must be taken not to give any medication that has not been prescribed by your vet. Even then, some drugs are quite aggressive and may affect your dog’s liver if he is undergoing some other kind of treatment.

Detoxification is an important liver function. In the liver cells, a complex process occurs depending on the substance being detoxified. The offending toxin is inactivated and eliminated by the body. It will either pass through the kidneys and excreted in urine or, secreted into bile and passed out in the feces.

Bile Metabolism

Bile is made up of electrolytes, cholesterol, bile acids, bilirubin, and globulins. It is produced by hepatocytes, secreted into channels in the liver called and stored in the gall bladder. Drugs are eliminated in the bile, red blood cells are re-circulated through the bile system, and fats are absorbed from the intestines into the bloodstream only in the presence of bile.

When red blood cells break down and are recycled, they release bilirubin from their hemoglobin. The liver, along with spleen and bone marrow, recycle this bilirubin, salvaging some of the compounds and excreting the rest in the bile. Bilirubin, which is toxic, binds to albumin and is detoxified and excreted. Eventually this will reach the intestines and be broken down by intestinal bacteria, where it imparts the dark color to stools. If this bilirubin cannot be excreted from the gallbladder (when there is an obstruction in the bile duct), there will be very light colored stool.

Excess amounts of bilirubin that build up in the bloodstream will cause jaundice, the yellow discoloration of the mucous membranes and skin that can occur with liver disease.

The fat-soluble vitamins, A, D, E, and K, require bile for proper absorption from the intestines. These vitamins are stored in the liver, and are converted to active compounds as part of the liver’s job.

Blood Clotting

Proteins initiate and maintain blood clotting and are synthesized by the liver. A diseased liver is unable to synthesize these proteins, leading to potential bleeding problems. Vitamin K is also an essential component of these clotting mechanisms.

Red Blood Cell System

The liver removes old or damaged red blood cells from the circulation, and is involved with the storage of iron and the breakdown of hemoglobin. Because of this, chronic liver disease causes anemia in most cases. The liver (along with the spleen), is a storage organ for blood. If there is a severe blood loss, the liver expels this blood into the bloodstream to help make up for the loss.

Reticuloendothelial System

Specific cells called Kupffer cells line the inside of the liver. These cells are part of the immune system. They eliminate and degrade the substances that are brought into the liver by the portal vein. Some of these substances are bacteria, toxins, nutrients, and chemicals. When the liver is diseased, it will not be able to perform this function resulting in a build up of toxic substances such as bacteria, chemicals, or drugs. This can lead to further complications such as septicaemia where there are excess bacteria in the bloodstream. Anti-biotics are commonly used in the treatment of liver disease precisely for this kind of reason depending on specific diagnosis.


Many vitamins are stored in the liver, and perform their functions only when the liver activates them when needed.  These include some of the B vitamins and Vitamin C, along with A, D, E, and K previously described.


Canine liver disease may be caused if your dog receives a blunt blow to the front of the abdomen and is injured. The most common cause of this type of injury is where a dog is injured in a road accident.  A liver lobe can be fractured and bleed into the abdomen, even leading to death from internal bleeding. A more common occurrence is a bruise (contusion) that heals itself. Heatstroke, diaphragmatic hernia, and liver lobe torsion can also cause liver problems.


This severe inflammatory disease can cause digestive enzymes to spill over into the liver causing disease. The close proximity of the pancreas to the liver and the bile ducts results in some degree of hepatitis whenever there is a case of pancreatic inflammation. The liver disease will regress when the pancreatitis is treated.


Anemia decreases the oxygen available to liver cells and leads to their death.


Inflammation of the liver is called hepatitis. Hepatitis may be caused by many antagonists include trauma, bacteria, virus, poison or bile.

Infectious Hepatitis

Adenovirus or herpes virus causes infectious hepatitis. It is transferred from dog to dog by oral contact and ingestion of contaminated materials. It usually causes a transient non-specific illness characterized by lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever. It sometimes develops into a full-blown case of severe hepatitis. Treatment supports your dog while he fights off the virus. Infectious hepatitis can be prevented by routine vaccination.

Bacteria, viruses, and fungi

Bacterial infection is common in many liver problems so antibiotic therapy is often the first line of defence. Specific diseases include Infectious canine Hepatitis, canine Herpes virus, Leptospirosis, abscesses, histoplasmosis, coccidiomycosis, and Toxoplasmosis.

There are several known bacterial causes of hepatitis. Treatment is based on proper diagnosis and administration of antibiotics. Research shows that bacteria is a normal inhabitant of the liver and only becomes a problem when the liver is under attack from other causes.

Leptospirosis is one bacterial infection common in wildlife and transferable to domestic dogs and people through contaminated water. It is very dangerous and sometimes fatal but routine vaccination is the preventative measure to take.


Unfortunately, some kinds of parasites will infect the liver in your dog. A lot depends on your geographical location as some regions have a higher risk factor. Diagnosis is usually symptom based accompanied by fecal examination, and standard diagnostic techniques for liver disease. Treatment is the appropriate parasiticides.

Chronic Hepatitis

Some breeds of dog have a genetic predisposition to chronic hepatitis. This disease is primarily found in Bedlington Terriers, Doberman Pinschers, and West Highland White Terriers. The liver stores abnormal and toxic levels of copper. The course of the disease is variable, with some dogs presenting with acute hepatitis, and some presenting in end stage cirrhosis of the liver.

Diagnosis is made after a liver biopsy. Treatment requires the use of copper binding and anti-inflammatory drugs to decrease liver inflammation with dietary
modification to limit copper intake.


These worms can block blood flow into the liver and cause liver failure. A routine and regular de-worming programme for your dog can prevent this. In general, any disease that can cause failure of the right side of the heart can also cause liver problems.


Disease to the liver is caused by the ingestion, injection, or inhalation of a toxic substance, which adversely affects the liver. Due to the nature of the liver, that has a detoxification function, it is to be expected that an overload will be harmful.

There are some factors contributing to a greater likelihood of toxicity. Female dogs are more at risk than males, fatty diets are more dangerous, and high exposure to toxic chemicals, pesticides and so forth are all factors that put your dog at risk. Continuous exposure to these toxins could result in death but certainly, there will be severe inflammation of the liver cells. The damaged tissue resulting from the inflammation will be replaced with fibrous scar tissue. This could lead to cirrhosis of the liver in severe circumstances.

Toxins include many common drugs, such as anabolic steroids, chemotherapy drugs, some antibiotics, glucocorticoids, anaesthetics, parasite control drugs, and phenylbutazone.

Some of drug-induced hepatitis is a predictable side effect of the drug, while other incidences of hepatitis are considered an unpredicted or abnormal side effect of a given drug. This is difficult to diagnose unless there is a known exposure to the drug or toxin and the testing has been done. A biopsy will confirm liver destruction, inflammation, and fibrosis, but it will not single out the causative agent.

Different dogs have different tolerances to drugs and insecticides and so forth. For example, collie sheep dogs who ingest ivermectin a common parasite control product for worms in cattle horses and sheep, will be fatally poisoned, yet the rest of their canine friends will not be affected at all.

Drugs that cause liver damage

Dogs are extremely sensitive to cortisone and will develop lesions in the liver after long term or multiple dose therapy for a disease such as like Cushing’ disease. While cortisone is an effective treatment for Cushing’s disease, the side effects may cause liver damage. If signs of liver disease are noticed during treatment, the cortisone therapy can be stopped, the liver disease will improve, but the lesions may take months to heal.

Anti convulsant drugs such as Phenobarbital, primidone, and phentoin, may cause liver disease in 6 to 15 % of all dogs on anti-convulsant therapy. Inflammation of the liver varies according to the drug dosage. The extent of liver disease is variable and unpredictable. Treatment for the liver is removal of the drug treatment.

There are so many chemical compounds toxic to the liver and quite common treatments for ailments such as arthritis, heartworm, worms, parasites; epilepsy to name a few may cause some degree of liver damage.

Portal Vascular Abnormalities

This is a congenital defect is usually seen in young dogs and puppies where blood is passed from the digestive tract into the bloodstream without being detoxified by the liver. Symptoms of this condition are inconsistent but warning signs are youth, malnourishment, and chronic unwellness, poor tolerance to medication and anaesthetic and pica (eating unusual items). Diagnosis is based on a full veterinary work up with specialized X-rays, laboratory tests, and history. The only treatment is surgical intervention to correct the circulation abnormality.


Cancer can arise directly within the liver (primary) or spread from elsewhere (metastatic or secondary) through the circulatory or lymphatic systems. There are two blood supply routes to the liver through the portal vein and hepatic artery. This additional blood supply makes it likely that a tumor in a different organ will spread to the liver. Liver cancer is normally diagnosed long after the cancer is well established due to the remarkable powers of endurance the liver has.

Other than cancer, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes Mellitus, Pancreatitis, Cushing’s disease, and Inflammatory Bowel Disease may cause secondary liver disease for example.

Cirrhosis of the Liver

Cirrhosis of the liver occurs as the end result of several liver diseases. Cirrhosis can occur as a result of many different liver diseases. It is likely to occur in copper storage diseases of the liver, as the end result of chronic hepatitis, as a breed related disorder (Terrier breeds, Dobermans, Labradors, Cocker Spaniels and Standard Poodles), side effect of anti-seizure, and some de worming treatment. Cirrhosis sometimes appears after leptospirosis or infectious canine hepatitis although it is a rare complication in these cases.

Summary of Diseases

Amongst all of these various medical conditions your dog may suffer, the one that appears without much warning is chronic hepatitis, so awareness of symptoms is important for dog owners. This disease can be present for a long time without displaying symptoms. When clinical signs are present, it is likely the liver is markedly decreased in size and function. Even when things get this bad, it is possible to manage the condition. Recommendations include a low to moderate protein diet, drug therapy, supportive therapy with vitamins and natural products such as milk thistle.

All of the diseases mentioned that your dog could suffer from progress and slowly destroy the liver cells resulting in scarring and fibrous tissue in the liver or cirrhosis. Many dogs live for extended periods of times even if cirrhosis present. At this stage, it is difficult to identify the underlying cause for the disease.

New and Emerging Liver Diseases

Hepatocutaneous Syndrome

This syndrome is characterized by degeneration of the skin cells probably caused by nutritional imbalance caused by metabolic abnormalities as the result of pancreatic tumors or severe liver dysfunction.

It affects mainly older dogs who show clinical signs a syndrome primarily of skin disease although some dogs will exhibit symptoms of illness such as lethargy, poor appetite, and weight loss prior to the skin eruptions. The skin lesions frequently appear on the muzzle, lower legs, and footpads. Lesions can also appear on the mouth, earflaps, elbows, and genitalia. Most lesions consist of crusting, erosions, or ulcerations, but blisters may also occur. Footpads are often severely thickened and fissured and are often painful and the dog is lame.

Diagnosis is based on your dog’s history, physical examination, blood tests to identify abnormalities such as elevated liver enzymes and low protein levels, and skin biopsy.  Abdominal ultrasound may show a “honeycomb” pattern of the liver due to liver degeneration or less commonly a pancreatic tumor.

If a pancreatic or liver tumor is identified and able to be surgically removed, the skin lesions will normalize. This type of tumour spreads to other parts of the body quickly so surgery is not a total solution. In cases of end stage liver disease, surgery is not possible, so the aim of therapy is to increase quality of life and decrease uncomfortable skin lesions with supportive care, good nutrition. Milk thistle is helpful as a natural support element. Your vet will advise on a program of care that may involve fluid therapy, amino acid infusions, and a tailored course of minerals, protein, and enzymes. Unfortunately, despite the supportive care, the disease will progress and has a poor outcome with a survival time of around one year in most cases.

Idiopathic Vacuolar Hepatopathy

This is a condition observed in older dogs. The liver in these older dogs contain excess glycogen. Because of improved nutrition, vaccination, and de worming, dogs are now living longer and beginning to acquire geriatric diseases and other conditions previously unknown. There is speculation that increases in progestin steroid hormones may result in liver changes. It appears that almost every dog diagnosed with this condition live a prolonged life without illness from his or her liver disease. Recently studies have shown that a disproportionate number of Scottish terriers have liver changes suggesting a breed predisposition for this condition. They may have a genetic defect in ALP production.

Gallbladder Mucocele

Gallbladder mucocele is seen in smaller breeds and older dogs with Cocker Spaniels being most commonly affected. Most dogs have nonspecific clinical sign, such as vomiting, lack of appetite and lethargy. Abdominal pain and hyperthermia are common findings. Most dogs will show elevated serum elevations of total bilirubin. An ultrasound will confirm diagnosis.

General Symptoms of Liver Disease

Liver disease symptoms are very subtle and your dog may show very little in the way of signs. The alert owner can learn to recognise any unusual signs and advanced symptoms. If you have any concerns about your dog, do not wait and see but consult your veterinarian early as the earlier liver disease is caught, the quicker it can be treated successfully.

Dogs with liver disorders show many types of physical symptoms. Very few of the symptoms are specifically for liver disease, but are signs of multiple diseases and conditions that can affect the liver. Symptoms of liver disease are extremely subtle in the early stages. Your dog may experience all of the following symptoms, some of them or one of them.

Loss of appetite

Loss of appetite is always cause for concern and a veterinary surgeon should be contacted without delay.

Recurrent abdominal or gastrointestinal upsets

Any vomiting, diarrhea or constipation should be taken seriously especially if they are intermittent attacks.

Progressive depression or lethargy

When your dog does not want to play or go for walks and has a lethargic demeanor this can be a symptom to be taken seriously.

Swollen abdomen

This may mean there is fluid in the abdomen due to alterations in your dog’s circulation.

Pale gray feces.

Bile is what gives feces its characteristic brown color. If the liver is not processing bile properly, the feces will be unpigmented and a grayish color.

Orange urine

Improper bile processing results in high levels of bilirubin excretion in the urine, which results in an orange color.


Any pale or white skin or visible tissue takes on a yellow hue. This is because the biliary pigments are accumulating in the body because the liver is not processing them.

Bleeding problems

Many of the proteins required for proper blood clotting are created in the liver. When these proteins are low or not present, the ability to clot blood decreases. Any signs of bleeding that do not stop easily should be cause for concern and your veterinarian should be contacted immediately. If your dog has any small swellings or bruises it may indicate blood-clotting problems.

Neurological symptoms

Behavioral changes, seizures, aimless pacing or circling, pressing the head against a wall or stargazing are frightening symptoms that may be caused by toxicity causing the liver to fail. Contact your veterinarian immediately as an emergency.

Abdominal Pain

This is due to the stretching of the liver capsule. The liver is sore and tender and you are likely to notice this when your dog is lifted up. Your vet will also be able to tell the liver is swollen by examining your dog.

Chronic weight loss The liver processes all the essential life force building blocks. If it is not working correctly, bodily systems are compromised and the body cannot maintain itself.

Increased Water Consumption And Urination.

These symptoms are likely to be caused by large shifts in serum and kidney salt balances.

Blood Pressure

Recent studies concluded that dog liver disease could also cause high blood pressure. This will need monitoring if your dog is diagnosed with canine liver disease.

At the Veterinarian

If you notice your dog showing any of the symptoms described, make sure you consult your veterinarian as soon as possible. Because your dog’s liver is such an amazing organ, it can function even with severe disease. This essential organ is closely involved in all other bodily functions. The liver is very resilient to attacks by viruses and bacteria, but symptoms will show up, even though another condition is causing the primary illness. Dog liver disease is very often therefore a secondary condition brought about by a primary illness in another area of your dog’s body.


Your veterinarian will use his or her expertise and knowledge of anatomy and disease to make a diagnosis. Taking known facts into account like the age and breed of the dog, his vaccination status, worming program, toilet habits and so forth, they will be able to eliminate certain diseases and use tests to arrive at a diagnosis and how affected your dog’s liver is by disease.


Early signs of liver disease are subtle and it is a good idea to get into the practice of taking your dog for annual routine check ups that include blood work especially if he falls into a high risk category for canine liver disease e.g. breed pre-disposition or is over eight years of age. It is important to remember that your dog may not show any explicit signs of canine liver disease, which is why a regular blood or urine test may give you an early warning. Often indirect evidence from laboratory tests can lead to the presence of liver disease.

Always provide your veterinarian with all relevant facts. Nothing is too small or insignificant and the more facts you can provide the better the chances. If for example you have been using weed killer in the garden or spilled some anti freeze in the garage the dog may have ingested or you have to admit his diet is less than healthy go ahead, your veterinarian needs to know all the facts you have because at the end of the day you know your dog best.

Physical Exam

When your veterinarian examines your dog, physical examination findings may include a distended abdomen due to enlargement of the liver. This symptom can also be indicative of other diseases it should be borne in mind. There may be enlarged lymph nodes, which could indicate secondary bacterial infection or the spread of a primary liver tumor. Bruising may be seen under the skin or after a blood sample is taken which is due to the liver’s effect on your dog’s blood clotting mechanism.

Sometimes canine liver disease is accompanied by fever indicated by a rectal temperature of 103 degrees when inflammation or infection is present. Your veterinarian will notice all of the signs and symptoms present by a full body examination and routine blood and urine tests.

Sometimes if results are inconclusive, it may require some more extensive blood and diagnostic testing to be certain of the diagnosis. Many different levels of liver enzymes are tested and compared against normal levels.


X rays can show increased liver size, decreased liver size liver abscesses, abnormal mineralization, and circulatory abnormalities (using special dyes).


Ultrasound is one of the better techniques for diagnosing dog liver disease as the circulation of the liver, the bile duct system, the density of liver tissue and the size of the liver can be seen.

Biopsy of the liver

While this is surgery, it is most useful for diagnosis of canine liver disease as liver tissue can be examined and tested to give a conclusive diagnosis and a treatment regime based on the findings. Your dog’s liver biopsy can be taken by a full laparotomy where the whole liver can be looked at by the veterinary surgeon or by a needle biopsy. The liver will regenerate these tiny pieces of liver taken for testing so it is a low risk procedure for your dog.


The course of treatment required in a case of canine liver disease will depend upon the cause of the condition. For example, if trauma was the trigger, hospitalization while the dog recovers from the impact of the trauma may be all that is required. On the other hand, antibiotics may be needed if a bacterial infection is at the root of the disease. Furthermore, when liver disease is caused by another medical condition such as cancer or anemia, these additional medical circumstances will need to be taken into account.

In addition to certain medications, dietary adjustments and supplements can be very useful when attempting to treat canine liver disease. Dietary changes can include adjusting the amounts of proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates, fats, and minerals that a dog eats. This will then ensure that your dog is receiving the nutrition he needs and will also help to decrease the stress and workload of the liver. Vitamin K can be helpful with respect to controlling bleeding disorders while vitamin E, as an antioxidant, helps to remove free radicals and to prevent continued damage to your dog’s liver.

Certain natural remedies can also be very helpful when treating canine liver disease. Natural herbs and substances have properties that assist with the purification of blood, the stimulation of digestive enzymes, and the protection of the liver from toxic substances. Some of these substances have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Milk thistle is another natural ingredient that is known to be very effective in cases of canine liver disease. This natural substance acts as an antioxidant like vitamin E, stimulates production of new liver cells, and helps to prevent certain toxins from attaching to the liver. Thus, many natural substances and remedies can be very beneficial for dogs suffering from liver disease.

Never use alternative therapies until you have received a proper and specific diagnosis from your veterinarian.


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The most feared word of any dog owner is “cancer”. For dog owners whose pets are part of the family, the news that your dog has cancer is devastating. However, although it is hard to take in and very frightening, the more information you have and the more knowledge about treatment options, the easier it will be for you to decide what steps to take to do the best you can for your dog.

Understanding a little about the disease, its various forms, and the possible outcomes will at least make things clearer and assist you in making decisions along the way. You will understand what changes your dog will go through, what is likely to happen to him, and what treatment and complementary therapies are available for him.

In simple terms, cancer is abnormal division of the cells and multiplication. Cells in all organs and of the body grow and then divide as part of the normal life cycle. The division of the cell results in two cells, which is why it is known as “multiplication” of cells. When the multiplication of cells is unchecked, they eventually destroy normal tissues and organs. Cancer can occur in any part of the body, and at any stage of life.

The good news is that the growth in “Veterinary Oncology” as a study field and the dedicated work of researchers and veterinary cancer specialists, cancer treatment for dogs has evolved a very long way in the past thirty years.

Many types of cancer CAN be cured through conventional treatments, or knocked into remission for increasingly longer periods of time. Due to the synergy and cross over of veterinary medicine to human medicine and back again, many cancer treatments available for people are also available for dogs, and new cancer treatments are being developed every day.

There are many pioneering organizations making efforts to research and work on canine cancer treatments in the hopes that new discoveries and drug therapies will provide a treatment where currently fatal cancers can be halted before that stage or even cured.

 Herbs, vitamins, and antioxidants for dog cancer support
  • Helps promote better quality of life
  • Supports the healing process
  • Helps maintain energy levels
  • Encourages your dog’s immune system
  • Helps ease pain and discomfort

Kit contains a 2 month supply for most dogs:

Cancer treatment for animals is always focused on providing the animal with the highest possible quality of life for the longest amount of time possible.  That is why dogs typically do so well while undergoing chemotherapy.

Humans by comparison rationalize and understand that the of the rigors of chemotherapy will make us very ill and we will suffer severe side effects in some cases but we have the mental capacity to know we will feel ill before we get better.

The philosophy of quality of life for your dog is extremely important since they cannot consent to their own medical treatment. Your dog’s quality of life could be destroyed and cause him considerable distress where an aggressive treatment that could cure the cancer completely is used, but would sacrifice your dog’s quality of life to the extent where he would not be able to function on his own and would need round the clock nursing.

Veterinary treatments of cancer keep the dog in a state where he can perform basic tasks such as eating, drinking, and toileting and retain some comfort. Many owners will take responsibility for the dog’s needs of course but if the treatment will take away the quality of life of your dog, it is a matter for discussion between you and your veterinarian. This is one of the most difficult diseases for you as a dog owner as ultimately you are responsible for his welfare. Some canine cancer support groups out there will help you through a difficult time or decision.


Normal Cell Division
Cell division is rapid in young growing pups, to allow for the quick growth in body size. As dogs become adult, this cell division slows and stops, until only cells of the skin, bone marrow, and intestine continue to divide throughout life. The body has an inbuilt monitor that keeps a close check on the balance between cell multiplication and cell death, so there is always just the right number of cells in an organ. Genes are responsible for controlling cell division and some genes switch on cell division and some switch cell division off thus maintaining the right balance.

Abnormal Cell Division
All of the causes of cancer are not fully known, but genetics, environment, and the state of an individual’s immune system are all thought to play a role. The outcome of treatment depends on how successful the therapy is at stopping the abnormal cell divisions. Abnormal cell division puts the body out of balance and can be caused by damage to a cell’s DNA. This in turn affects the genes involved in controlling the rate of cell division.

The body somehow loses the ability to kill the cells with damaged DNA resulting in abnormal cells multiplying out of control. These cells commonly known as cancer cells can spread throughout the body leading to organ failure and death.

Cell division and multiplication occurs in every organ of the body. This means cancer can occur anywhere. However, some cancers occur more frequently in our dogs than others and different breeds have more susceptibility to cancer.

The most prevalent cancers in all dogs are:
•    Breast cancer
•    Bone cancer
•    Skin cancer
•    Cancer of the mouth
•    Cancer of the lymphatic system.

Breeds that tend to have a higher incidence of cancer include Golden Retrievers, Boxers, German Shepherds, Cocker Spaniels, Flat Coat Retrievers, West Highland White Terriers, Rottweiler’s, Doberman Pinschers, Schnauzers, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Great Danes, Greyhounds, and Standard Poodles.

Breast Cancer in Dogs
Breast cancer is most common in female dogs, but it can occur in male dogs also. It usually occurs in middle aged to older dogs, particularly if they are not spayed or were spayed later on in life. This is because the hormones associated with the heat cycle can trigger abnormal growth of the mammary cells. This is a good reason to spay your female puppy if she is not going to be bred from.
The symptoms are firm, irregular lumps or masses that are felt under or near a nipple. The lumps usually appear in the mammary glands between the back legs. They grow rapidly and can develop smelly ulcers on top. Veterinarians rely on a biopsy to confirm that it is cancer. Sometimes the lumps are benign, but there is a real risk that these benign lumps will turn cancerous over time. It may be a good idea to remove the lump before it becomes dangerous.
Treatment for this type of dog cancer is surgery to cut away the lump, followed by chemotherapy. If the dog is female, you will be advised to have her spayed to remove the chances of hormonal activity that could set off the cancer again. Unfortunately, in many dogs, by the time breast cancer is diagnosed, it has already spread to the internal organs, and the outcome is not good.

Canine Osteosarcoma (Bone Cancer)
Osteosarcoma is the most common bone cancer in dogs. It tends to occur in middle aged, large breed dogs, and it most often develops at the ends of the long bones of the leg.

The first indication that there is a problem is usually when the dog starts to limp. The limp progressively gets worse, and painful swellings may develop where the tumour is growing. The cancerous bone is not as strong as normal bone, and it may suddenly break.

A veterinarian can usually make a diagnosis based on the dog’s age and breed and by taking an x-ray of the sore leg. A bone biopsy will give a definite answer. Bone cancer is extremely painful, and by the time it is diagnosed, it has usually already spread to the lungs.

Treatment commonly involves amputation of the affected leg. Most dogs do very well with only three legs, and they feel better with the painful tumour removed. Chemotherapy can extend their life, but for many dogs, the survival rates with osteosarcoma are one year even with treatment.

Skin Cancer in Dogs
Skin cancer is normally thought of as being caused by too much time spent in the sun. This is the case with dogs too, but the most common skin cancer is not related to sun exposure at all.

Skin cancer tumours are called mast cell tumours, and they normally appear as fast growing ulcerated nodules on the legs or body. They can be aggressive and spread to the internal organs from time to time.

Treatment involves surgical removal of the tumour where a wide margin of skin is also removed around the tumour to ensure all traces of cancer are removed. Follow up treatment may be radiation or chemotherapy. The outlook is very positive after skin cancer and your dog is likely to enjoy a good quality of life for several years.

Canine Mouth Cancer
Different types of tumour may develop in a dog’s mouth and throat. They all cause similar symptoms: Most tumours are not found until the disease is fairly advanced, so it is a good idea to regularly look inside your dog’s mouth. These tumours can spread into the bone of the jaws.

The symptoms of mouth cancer are bad breath, pain and difficulty eating, and sometimes bloody saliva.

Treatment often includes surgical removal of part of the jaw. Although dogs do seem to cope with this, it can make eating more difficult. This is often followed up with radiation therapy to try to increase survival time. These tumours do not have the best prognosis and many dogs do not survive for much more than a year after diagnosis.

Lymphatic Cancer in Dogs
Lymphocytes are cells, which are produced in the bone marrow, and are part of the body’s immune system. As with any other type of cell, they too can become cancerous. When this occurs, it is called Lymphoma and damage is possible to any organ that has lymphatic tissue. The most common areas for lymphoma to develop are the lymph nodes, the gastrointestinal tract, the bone marrow, and the skin.

Symptoms vary depending on which part of the body is affected, but in most cases, dogs will be come ill and may vomit, stop eating and develop a fever. Untreated, the dog rarely survives more than a few months.

Chemotherapy is successful in many cases and can lead to remission where the signs of cancer disappear, and the dog is essentially normal. Remission can last for as much as a year, but the cancer often reappears.
This is a perplexing problem for veterinary oncologists as if the cancer did not reoccur; this would be quite treatable with a positive prognosis.

There are four main influences in the development of cancer in dogs, some of them can be managed to reduce the risk of the disease.

Genes have been identified in some breeds of dog that seem to increase the risk of them developing cancer. German Shepherd dogs often develop hemangiosarcomas (a tumour of blood vessels), whereas osteosarcomas are common in Rottweilers. The fact that some types of tumours are more common in certain breeds suggests that these tumours have a genetic basis. It could be possible that some dogs are born with damaged DNA in his cells hence predisposing him to these types of cancer.
Infection and Inflammation:

Papilloma is a virus that causes harmless growths in a dog’s mouth. However, there appears to be a link between papilloma virus infection and the tendency for a dog to develop aggressive cancer of the mouth.

Chronic inflammation of an area may also trigger the growth of cancer. One example of this is when a broken limb has been repaired with plates and screws. If the screws become loose over time, then the irritation to the bone may lead to osteosarcoma in the area.

There are very strong links between hormones and breast cancer in dogs. Spaying a female dog before their first heat virtually eliminates the risk of breast cancer later in life. However, if she is spayed after 2 years of age, spaying does not protect her at all. Similarly, a tumour known as a perianal adenoma (a tumour of the tissue around the anus) is much more common in male dogs that have not been castrated.

In people, there have been connections made between exposure to pesticides and the development of cancer. There does not appear to be as strong a link between environmental toxins and cancer in dogs, so this may not be such an important influence. It does appear that being exposed to cigarette smoke may increase the risk of cancer of the nose and sinuses. Sun damage can lead to skin cancer in dogs.

Responsible dog ownership and attention to your dog’s well being may not prevent him developing cancer but if you regularly give him a condition check when you are grooming or make a point to have a once weekly examination, you may be able to improve the outcome by catching the warning signs early. Other warning signs to look out for are included that you may see at any time.


1.    Feel your dog’s body all over to check for any lumps and bumps. If you dog is longhaired, pay special attention to this. If you notice any lumps or bumps, then get them checked out by your veterinarian.

2.    Check your dog’s mouth for bad breath, bleeding gums. Does he seem sore? Monitor how he eats a treat or his meal, is he having difficulty swallowing. If he shows any of these signs, he should be checked over by your veterinarian.

3.    Most dog owners know what their dog is like when he is in fine fettle and bursting with play, health, and activity with a healthy appetite so it should be easy to see if he is depressed or just off colour. Any of these signs of unwellness or vomiting or lethargy should be investigated.

4.    Does your dog have any lumps and bumps on his leg joints? Is he lame or sore? If he is showing any of these signs, he needs to be checked over.

5.    Check your dog’s body condition and see if he has lost weight unexpectedly, if so he needs a trip to the veterinarian.

6.    Are there sores that do not seem to be healing or bleeding and discharge from any body openings?

7.    Is your dog reluctant to exercise or has a distinct loss of stamina?

8.    Is your dog showing signs of difficulty, breathing, urinating, or evacuating stools?

If your dog exhibits any of these signs or you notice any abnormalities in your dog during your condition check, make an appointment with your vet sooner rather than later. Cancer treatment in dogs usually has a better outcome if it is started early, so getting a quick diagnosis is crucial.


1.    Spay your female dog before her first heat to prevent breast cancer if she is not breeding stock.

2.    Male dogs with undescended testicles should be neutered as the retained testicle often becomes cancerous.

3.    Dogs with thin skin and coats with a pale colour should not be allowed too much exposure to the sun to avoid skin cancer.

4.    Choose your pedigree dog with care and avoid breeds with a predisposition to cancer or try to buy from a parental line that does not have any incidences of cancer.

5.    Feed your dog a high-quality diet that uses human-grade ingredients and little to no preservatives or additives. Good nutrition is key to good health.

6.    Keep your dog at a healthy weight. Dogs that are overweight or obese are at greater risk of developing cancer.

7.    Try to limit your dog’s exposure to chemicals and pesticides such as lawn treatments and fertilizer, known to increase risk of cancer.

8.    Avoid chemical flea and tick treatments or limit the use to when you need them.

9.    Consider using natural remedies and treatments to support your dog’s immune system


Radiation therapy involves using a focused radiation beam to kill tumour cells. Radiation can also affect rapidly dividing normal (good) cells, so veterinarians try to protect surrounding parts of the body as much as possible. They also spread out radiation treatments to allow normal cells to recover.

Chemotherapy is a drug treatment that may be a single drug or combination of drugs to aggressively treat the cancer. In general, dogs receive a lower dose than humans as it is important for dogs to retain basic functioning. This also helps them to avoid some side effects and tolerate the treatment more robustly.

The purpose of the drugs is to attack cells and prevent them from dividing or to damage the cell’s DNA. The chemotherapy drugs cannot differentiate between cancerous and non-cancerous cells so the immune system is compromised and side effects can occur. Side effects are not so much of an issue with dogs as they receive the chemotherapy in lower doses.

It is unlikely your dog will lose his hair as a human would, as they do not continually grow hair like humans. There may be a little thinning or change of texture though. Poodles and Old English Sheepdogs are at risk of losing their coats as they have coats that continually grow.

The removal of cancerous tumours and growths will be done under a general anaesthetic. Biopsies may just require a local anaesthetic.

Complete removal of the tumour may be possible or in the case where a tumour affects other organs, is close to or entwined in major blood vessels, a partial removal to de bulk the tumour will be performed.

Your dog will experience some pain and discomfort after surgery and will need nursing. He will likely have some form of pain relief. It is important to discuss the surgery with your veterinary surgeon so you know what the surgery is, if the dog will need feeding tubes fitted for post surgery and you will need to discuss the options if the veterinary surgeon discovers more masses or complications.

If all of the tumour is safely removed, your dog is still likely to require follow up with chemotherapy or radiation.

Alternative and Natural Therapies
Some dog owners like to use alternative and natural therapies to support treatment that is more conventional. Many vets now offer these services and natural remedies, and they may improve the outcome for some cancer patients.

There are some natural remedies and treatments that have proved highly effective in supporting conventional medicine

While your dog is undergoing the stressful procedures of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy treatment, there are things you can do to support him. Good nutrition is vital to keep up his energy levels. If his appetite is poor, he may need to be fed through a stomach tube. He may need fluids to stop him becoming dehydrated, and in most cases, he will definitely need pain relief.

It is perfectly fine to choose not to continue treatment or not to treat your dog that has cancer if the outcome is not promising or if you do not have the finances to treat him. All veterinarians will give you support to make your dog’s life comfortable and will help you when it comes to making the right decision for your pet.

You can provide palliative care for your dog at home with the help of your vet and do what you can to keep his quality of life strong for as long as possible.

Advances in veterinary care mean that dogs are living longer than in the past, and the incidence of cancer is naturally increasing as more dogs reach geriatric age. New diagnostic tests and treatment choices mean that the outcome for many cases of cancer in dogs is quite good. Work with your vet, choose your treatments carefully, and you will get the best outcome possible for both you and your dog.

Finally, do not overlook the importance of a good pet insurance policy. This will not necessarily reduce the risk of cancer, but it may make routine wellness exams and preventative care more affordable. If your dog should be diagnosed with cancer during the course of their life, it will help you to afford lifesaving cancer treatments to help your dog battle this disease. Pet insurance is an excellent way to protect yourself and your pet.

solutions for dog aggression

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Although there are many things that you are likely to enjoy in life, it is difficult to surpass the enjoyment that is available through pet ownership. Not only are you getting a companion when you own a dog, you are getting a family member that is going to stick with you through thick and thin. It is that unconditional love that it showed by pets which attracts many individuals to owning them, although there may be times when problems can occur. For example, your dog may end up developing some type of habit that is going to be undesirable. This can be anything from jumping on people when they enter into the home or crowding the door, all the way to something more aggressive, such as biting or nonstop barking. What are some of the things that you can do one of these problems occur?

One important thing to consider is the fact that any sudden change in your dog’s behavior may be a medical problem that will need to be addressed by a veterinarian. If your dog suddenly starts to bite at you after years of being a faithful companion, it may be possible that it could have an infection or be in pain for some other reason. It may also be necessary for you to hire a Bay Area dog training service which will assist you in rooting out the cause of the personality change within the animal (Source: Bay Area Dog Training by Good Dog, Great Dog). They will be able to work with you and the dog directly at your home so that you can once again enjoy owning your pet.

Benefits Of Payday Loans for Emergencies

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There are plenty of benefits of payday loans online. Payday loans are small loans that you can borrow for a short period of time. The lenders will give you a few hundred dollars until you get your next paycheck or for a period of a couple of months.

They are very popular in the United States. Millions of people who live in the United States are short of cash a couple of days before they get paid by their employer.

Benefits of payday loans:

#1: These loans are almost instant.

The entire process is pretty simple and straightforward. You can apply online and most of the time your application will be either approved or denied in less than 1 hour. Most people who apply for a payday loan receive a favorable answer. If this will happen, you will more likely receive your money in the same day.

I remember a time when I had to pay a few dog care emergencies. I didn’t have enough money at the time and I had to borrow it. Thanks to the magic of payday loans, my German Shepherd dog is still alive and well.

#2: Don’t struggle when you are short of cash.

I know many people who used to struggle and didn’t put food on their table when they didn’t have money to buy something to eat. It’s not a pleasant thing to do especially when you have other options. There’s no need to suffer. Borrow a small amount of money for a short period of time and then you will repay it back.

#3: Cash is not wealth.

Sometimes it makes sense to invest your money in a business even though you may risk running short on cash. Realize that cash is not wealth. Cash is just paper money that was printed by the Fed. If cash is not wealth, it means that it’s not a horror story to be out of cash.

#4: The interest rates are tiny.

You don’t need to pay huge interest rates for your payday loan online. The interest rates are so small. It feels like the loans are almost free. Banks charge such a small amount of interest because they get their money from the Fed at a very small rate. Plus, the banks also compete against each other for the same market. This means that no bank can offer interest rates indefinitely by itself. Other banks will choose to lower their interests to take their clients.

#5: You don’t need to be a credit ranking master to get a loan.

Most banks don’t even look at you if your credit ranking is bad. They will ignore you or your needs because a loan given to you represents a high risk opportunity to them. Payday loan lenders do not care about your credit rankings because the sums you borrow from them are small.

#6: Payday loans are supposed to be paid when you get your next paycheck.

The name “payday” comes from the idea that these loans should be paid when you get your next paycheck. These loans first appeared because many people living in the United States found themselves short of cash a couple of days before they got their next paycheck. This situation is explained by the low saving rate in the United States.

#7: These short term loans were created to serve people.

Bank institutions and bankers think from the perspective of how to get the most money from their clients. The don’t get the idea that you should first and foremost care more for your clients than for yourself. You should think from the perspective of the client. Payday loans were invented to solve a problem encountered by millions. It wasn’t invented just to make a profit on the back of the common folks.

Emergencies can happen. Dog care emergencies, health related emergencies and other types of emergencies can hit you and create big problems if they catch you unprepared. A payday loan will help you get out of the mess quickly and easily.

The above benefits of payday loans explain why taking on payday loans make sense when you are short of cash for short periods of time. Don’t do it unless you will have a sure way of getting money in the near future. Now, go ahead and learn more about payday loans. See if you qualify.

How to get urgent cash for your pet’s health emergencies?

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Every one treats their pets much more than an animal; pets become part of their families. They play an important role in the home and they can be great companions to you and to your family members.  Caring for your pet is not a difficult job.

If your pet is ill or injured, you should take some precautions to cure your pet. Know whom to call and what to do when your pet is injured; make a preplan for your pet emergency health care. Note your veterinarian’s number and keep it handy.

Sometimes in certain situations like when pet needs some medication or urgent surgery, if your pet doesn’t have any insurance, all of a sudden you need some emergency money. If you are short of cash and your next payday is after couple of weeks, you can’t leave your pet at risk; the better choice is to opt for a payday loan. Going for this loan will help you to get urgent cash to attend to your pet’s needs and saves your valuable time.

The second option you can choose is- pets insurance, this will help you pay your veterinary bills; it protects pets when they meet with some unexpected accidents or illness. This insurance can be either for unexpected or for regular health checkup of your pet. As veterinary fees are so expensive these policies can give relief from some of those fees. Paying a small amount into a pet insurance policy will help you to save big expenses in future.

Whatever the problem you might be faced with, remember your pet’s health is primary. So try to make an effort to care for your pet.

Below are some tips to care for your pets.

  1. Spend some time with your pets by playing games or taking them out to parks or gardens
  2. Provide hygienic and nutritious food and plenty of water
  3. Allocate your monthly budget to cater for the needs of your pet
  4. Research the web to get the best pet insurance deals
  5. You need to provide proper shelter to your pet
  6. It is your responsibility to keep your pet fit and healthy
  7. Do not overfeed your pet, as this results in obesity and other health problems
  8. Open pet savings account, with this you can cover most of your financial problems


Author Bio:

My name is Michelle. I am a tech writer from UK. I am into Finance. Catch me @financeport

Native dog breeds risk extinction

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Are you a pet keeper? I know these days you are little bit worried about your pets. It is very necessary to choose right dog for the right purpose. You should always consider that the nature, characteristic and quality of each breed, is different from one another. You select the one that is congenial to your style. Recently a study has investigated that native dog’s species are being endangered. One of the famous Britain’s native dogs called English setter. Their life is at stake. It has been investigated that in the previous two years they had given birth to small number of puppies.

Generally, it is seen that if the birth of the puppy is less than 300 in a year. Then the breed is assumed to be in a precarious condition. Being a nature saver you all have to ban the preference of alien dogs at the cost of the native breeds. You should endeavor to provide the appropriate food and lifestyle to them in the previous year more than 3000 dogs has been incorporated in the list of delicate breeds. A famous Hollywood star Paris Hilton tames a typical type of dog breed called Chihuahua. This particular breed has innumerable fan following as compared to Britain’s native ones. It is sad that your lives are driven by the culture of glamor world. In order to retain your style statement you prefer to have celebrity dogs rather than the Native ones. The recently affected dog is English setter they have Siberian Huskies as strong rival. The native breeds are very delicate they only expect a tinge of love, care and tenderness from you.

The rescue organizations are really pondering on the fact about how to save this jeopardized species. It is very important that you quest for such rare threatened species and tame them. You could discover qualities in them and have them as your pets. Taking these steps studiously, you could save millions of native dogs breed. I should give you information that another native dog breed called Outterhound. These species lives are at stake. Amongst all the native breeds one of the breed named Cardigan Welsh Corgi is saved. These dogs are used to add compliment to the royal weddings. Moreover, these dogs are the favorite of the celebrities and the Queen of Britain as well.

Therefore, it is awesome to summarize that the number of Cardigan species has really gained momentum. Wake up and take necessary steps to save these endangered species. They really need your help. You should endeavor to save this historic species. I would like to applaud your efforts to save these breeds. Try to give them a new life. Make sure while getting these breeds please do confirm their loyalty. Always go for the one that are not so aggressive and would remain loyal to you. After taking the charge of a particular breed, you should give them adequate amount of food. You should also consult veterinary doctors in case, if they are not well.


About the author: Kelly Marsh is a blogger by profession. She loves writing on technology, health and parenting. Beside this she is fond of pets animals. She also likes reading various articles on auto motto & gizmo watch.

How to Calm Your Dog During a Thunderstorm

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Thunderstorms are never fun for children or dogs. The loud noises and heavy rain can be unnerving for them simply because they do not understand. Here are some ways you can help your dog through their next thunderstorm:

Look for signs: Dogs who are scared by thunderstorms typically give off warning signs. It’s is almost a 6th sense for animals to predict a storm that is on its way. They will begin to pace, pant and do things to get your attention. If you see these signs, check the weather and prepare.

Kennel: Some dogs are so frightened by storms that they will act out and destroy your home. In order to prevent ruined carpet, furniture or blinds, kennel them inside during a storm. Containing them will protect your home from getting ruined. Place the kennel in the most proof part of your home, like your bedroom closet. Place familiar toys and a blanket with your scent on it to help calm them. You can also try to cover the kennel with a blanket to help their fear.

Puppy stage: The earlier you start the comforting process the better for your dog as it gets older. When storms happen during their puppy years, act naturally and perhaps form a routine. Play fetch and give them their favorite dog biscuit or try combing/massaging their coat. Do one of these routines each time there is a storm to help them feel at ease. If your dog is older, it is possible to ‘train an old dog new tricks’ and start this routine.

Create a safe place: During a storm you want to create a safe place that your dog can go to. As mentioned before, find the quietest spot in your home. Bedroom closets work well because of all the clothes can help muffle noises. Place a blanket and a toy to help them feel safe. Closing the can put your dog in a state of panic, so leave the door ajar to comfort them.

Old t-shirts: This idea tends to work on smaller to medium dogs. Take one of your old t-shirts and place your dog inside so that they wear it. Not only does the smell comfort them but the light pressure against their bodies helps them to remain calm.

During a thunderstorm, talk softly and sweetly your dog to reassure them everything is fine. Dogs can sense your uneasiness or stress, so be sure that you remain calm. And just remember it may be a ruff time but this storm shall pass too.

Author Byline:

Kelsey  is the editor in chief for findananny. She loves to write article and ideas that parents & nannies would be interested in hearing. She helps society on giving information about nannies through  online nanny finder. She is a professional writer & loves writing on any thing.

a dog care blog carnival – July 5, 2012

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Welcome to the July 5, 2012 edition of a dog care carnival.

Be a guest blogger here!

Jacques Bouchard presents Pet Travel Tips: Planes, Trains, & Automobiles posted at Onward Healthcare Blog, saying, “Are you bringing your pet on a trip in a car, plane, train, bus, or ferry? This article gives you everything you need to know to make them as comfortable and safe as possible.”

Phil Basten presents The Simple Way to Toilet-train A Puppy posted at Dog Training Blog | Tips and Dog Training Resources, saying, “hassle free tips and tricks on how to train your puppy or dog.”

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of a dog care carnival using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

Want more than a mention?  Write a post for us!

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7 Grooming Tips for Your Dog

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Good grooming for a dog is as important, if not more important, than good hygiene for a human. Good grooming helps your dog look nice and smell nice, but also helps your dog stay healthy. It reduces the chances of fleas and reduces chances of infections. Here are seven tips to help you keep your dogs in a good and healthy condition.

Tip #1: Research Your Specific Breed

Different breeds of dogs require different grooming regimes. Some dogs need to be brushed every day, while other dogs only need to be brushed once a week. Some dogs will stay still while you groom, while others will run around and be hyper-energetic.

Learn as much as you can about your specific breed and individual dogs personality.

Tip #2: Use Treats to Calm Them Down

Getting your dog to sit still through grooming is a negotiation. Don’t try to use force to get them to stay still, or you’ll be in for a very long haul. Instead, learn to use treats to get them to calm down and accept the grooming.

Give them a treat every time they let you work for a short period of time.

Tip #3: Clean the Inner Ears

This is one aspect of dog grooming that many owners skip over these days. Cleaning out the inner ears will help you prevent bad smells coming from the buildup of earwax and to avoid having discharge flow out.

How do you clean the inner ears? Just take a hold of the hairs in the ear and pull it gently. Don’t cut the hairs, as scissors near your dog’s ears can be dangerous. Also wipe inside the ear with a tissue wrapped around your finger, just don’t reach in too far!

Tip #4: How Often Should Your Dog Bathe?

If your dog doesn’t bathe often enough, he’ll start to smell. He could also drag bacteria, dirt and micro-organisms from the yard into the house. However, bathing every day is unhealthy for dogs as it removes the dog’s natural oils.

Most dogs should bathe somewhere between every 4-12 weeks but should be brushed more often.

Tip #5: Dog Dental Care

Just as humans need to brush their teeth, so do canines. Dogs need a good teeth brushing to avoid dental issues as well as bad breath.

Start by going to your local pet store and purchasing some toothpaste and toothbrushes for dogs. Then apply the toothpaste on the brush and brush the dog’s teeth. Use up and down motions as well as circle motions.

Tip #6: Learn the “Grooming Voice”

Never shout at your dog during grooming. Using a commanding voice can sometimes help, but unless your dog is very obedient chances are even that’ll stop working after a time.

What’s the best voice to talk to a dog with during grooming? It’s the “grooming voice.” The voice should be gentle and reassuring, much like how you’d talk to a small child when you’re trying to get them to play.

Dogs pick up on subtle vocal cues. Though they can’t understand your words, when you’re speaking to them gently and reassuringly, they still feel calmed. Combine that with a bit of assertive yet gentle guidance and the dog will be sure to listen.

Tip #7: Dog Nail Trimming

Trimming your dog’s nails is one of the trickiest parts of dog grooming. It’s important, without a doubt. If you don’t get your dog’s nails trimmed, he could tear apart furniture as well as hurt people or other pets. There’s also the risk of infections or of getting more dirt and bacteria under the nail.

Trimming your dog’s nails is best left to a professional. There’s a big risk of nicking a blood vessel if you’re not careful. Take your dog to a professional groomer every couple months.

If you decide to do it yourself at home, make sure to purchase a dog nail cutting tool. Don’t try to do it with standard scissors or shears. Dog nail cutters are designed specifically to snip dog nails and are much safer and more effective than using regular scissors. They’re very affordable, so don’t jeopardise your dog’s paws by not buying the right tools.

These seven tips will help you keep your dog in tip top condition. Grooming your dog is your responsibility as a caring owner. It’ll help keep both your dog and your home safe.

Image Credits – Free Digital Photos

Author Bio – This article has been written by Justin Kumaran, Senior Behaviourist at Halo Dogs. Halo Dogs is Europe’s largest dog day care service. They not only provide an excellent doggy day care service but also specialize in dog training, puppy training, grooming, agility training and lots more.

How To Volunteer With Your Dog

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You know that animals have a way of healing and helping humans, especially dogs. There are many different ways you can volunteer with your pup. Consider your dog’s personality and what time of environment they can volunteer in before choosing the best organization for you both. Common places to volunteer include nursing homes, children hospitals, schools and local/city clubs. Before you get started ask yourself a few questions.

Questions:Answer these questions about your dog can help you decide which route you want to take your pup for volunteering:

  • Does your dog like children?
  • Does your dog like large or small groups?
  • Does your dog get along with other dogs?
  • How does your dog react around strange and unfamiliar noises?
  • Does your dog like to be pet?
  • How does your dog do in new environments?
  • What are you dogs strengths?
  • What are your dog’s weaknesses?
  • How long can your dog keep its attention on a task?

Questions you need to ask yourself are:

  • Do you have the time each month?
  • Are you willing to attend training sessions?
  • Are you patient enough to sit for a few hours?
  • Can you handle your dog on and off the leash?
  • Are you comfortable in unfamiliar situations and environments?
  • Are you a people person?
  • Are you able to express gently to someone how to handle your dog?

Once you have chosen the best route for you and your dog contact the organization you wish to volunteer with and speak to them about their different options. Places like hospitals and nursing homes require that your dog go through a temperament test and physical tests to ensure your dog is capable of being in that environment. Some locations have a list of breeds that they do not allow in their facilities, be sure to ask about this list. You can expect the tests to include intensive interacting to figure out if your dog will ultimately be a benefit and safe in the given environment. Once you have passed all the tests, it’s time to commit your time. If you plan on volunteering be sure that you can continually volunteer with your dog. In most cases, the volunteer dogs find much joy out of it and become accustomed to it. So be sure to always allow time in your life to volunteer.

Volunteering is not only helping your dog, the person in need but it helps you. Volunteering is an amazing journey to take with your dog and for yourself. Enjoy it and embrace the changes that it comes with!

About the Author:

This guest post is contributed by Debra Johnson, blogger and editor of live out nanny.

She welcomes your comments at her email Id: – jdebra84 @

5 ways to keep dogs healthy

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The old adage “dog is man’s best friend” has never been more true, if you take a look at how much people spend on their furry friends. Pet owners are spending more on their pet’s health and quality of life than ever before. Pet stores and supplies are an estimated $50 billion industry.

With such a large industry focused on pets and their owners, it can be tempting to go on a spending spree to prove your love to Fido. If you’re interested in just throwing your money away, then go for it! If, however, you would rather find some simple, everyday ways to watch out for your pet’s well being, then check out the following recommendations:


Harmful UV rays don’t discriminate between humans and animals. If your pet has short fur or exposed areas, use a sunscreen approved for pets. Never apply human sunscreen to animals. And remember that some dogs will bask in the sun all day long, because they don’t understand the dangers of sun exposure.

Filtered water

Many people drink filtered water at home, but it may never occur to them to fill their dog’s bowl with filtered water, too. Using a water filter can remove pesticides, lead, and other dangerous materials from your drinking water. These can be bad for both your health and your pet’s, as well. A refrigerator filter can also save you money, because it filters hundreds of gallons of water for significantly less than it would cost to buy the same amount of bottled water

Ear infections

Some dogs are prone to ear infections caused by excess moisture or allergens. While you should always have a veterinarian check out any problems with your pet, you can take some steps to reduce the risk of ear infections. After your pet’s bath, make sure to gently wipe the inside of the ears so they’re dry. Your veterinarian may also prescribe an ear wash to treat ear infections.

Poisonous plants

Dogs and cats both enjoy spending time outside, but their owners should always be on guard for potentially poisonous plants. There are a wide variety of plants that could make your pet ill or worse, and many of these grow in the wild. Use this helpful guide from the ASPCA to check your yard for poisonous plants. Avoid the use of heavy pesticides to control the issue, as these may be equally dangerous to your pets. After you’ve taken a look outside, you may also want to check out any plants you have inside the home and make sure they’re safe.

Arthritis pain

Many of the strategies for managing arthritis in humans are also effective for dogs. Exercise, over-the-counter glucosamine supplements and anti-inflammatory medication (prescribed by a veterinarian) can all help minimize arthritis pain.

Your pets are a part of your family. While they may not be able to sit at the dinner table or join in the conversation, you still want what’s best for them. These simple solutions, along with a proper diet and careful monitoring of any problems can help you keep your pets healthy without breaking the bank.

a dog care blog carnival – September 6, 2012

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Welcome to the September 6, 2012 edition of a dog care carnival.

Be a guest blogger here!

dog care

Jon Anderson presents The Dog Owner’s Guide to Canine Liver Disease posted at Holistic Dog Care Tips, saying, “Canine liver disease is one of the causes of death in dogs and is something to be taken seriously by dog owners.”

Kimberly Gauthier presents Wanted! Soft Perfume and Non Toxic Flea & Tick Treatments posted at Keep the Tail Wagging, saying, “This year I decided to move away from spot flea and tick treatments and look for safer, holistic options and was surprised to find several options that really work and are less expensive. Our favorite is Bright Eyes Pet Wellness.”

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of a dog care carnival using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

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