Lotsa Dogs Lotsa Fun

Lotsa Dogs Lotsa Fun
The Big Dogs Wait at The Door

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Dog Ownership is a HANDS-ON Job!!

It never ceases to amaze me the problems dogs can have without their owners noticing. I know people who aren't doggie fanatics don't fuss over their pups the way we do at The Doggie Den, but what comes into our grooming shop boggles the mind. It's now the busy holiday season, and many people who come in only get their dog groomed once or twice a year. In those cases, skin and coat problems tend to be well entrenched.

Day before yesterday, an owner brought us his bichon complaining that the dog scratched constantly. Maria (our groomer) turned him over and his belly was literally ALIVE! It was moving in a truly creepy way. Hundreds of thousands of fleas infested his belly, chest and bum. And who knows how many elsewhere? We soaped him up 3 times with our strongest flea shampoo, then disinfected the entire shop, especially the tub where we bathed him. I simply could not believe that anyone touching him would not have noticed the zillions of creatures moving around in his coat! We sent him home with Frontline and did our best to convince the owner to flea-bomb his home.

Shortly before that, a lab owner came in complaining that his dog stank. We also smelled the "dead things" odor. The owner thought pup must have rolled on a dead animal in the woods. When Maria went to take off his collar there was a wide band of horribly diseased skin and surface tissue underneath with no coat covering it at all. LOTS of dead tissue, which is what was causing the odor. Furious, Maria did manage not to turn to the owner and smack him upside the head. Imagine the suffering that poor lab endured while his family saw him as "fine!" Maria bathed and debrided the area with a medicinal shampoo. The odor went away and the dog looked as though he'd died and gone to heaven. Now you tell me, how the hell did no one in his family ever look under his collar in all those weeks?? Because it took weeks (if not longer) for the problem to reach this point. Was no one giving him an occasional scratch behind the ears??

Well, we rinsed and dried the dog and exacted a promise from the owner that he would take him to a vet immediately. Who knows if he did.

So, please, GET YOUR HANDS INTO YOUR DOG'S COAT! Often and everywhere. Scratch the area under his collar (it itches even if there are no skin problems; it ALWAYS itches). Give his ears a good, gentle rub. Put her on her belly and rub her chest and abdomen. Scratch the area on the inside of her back legs/haunches. Examine his bum for fecal staining or deposits and cut them out carefully with scissors if necessary. Give his underarms (front legs) a good scratch. And if you only have a second, well, scratch her back!!

Dogs need contact! They do it for each other in the wild. They often reciprocate by licking (grooming) your face. You think it's kisses, but for her, it's simply returning a favor. When I give my sheltie, Shuki, a good head and shoulders scratch she gets up on the back of the couch and cleans behind my ears! I have to remember to take my earrings off or she'll chew them!

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Halloween Watch-outs!!

It's a spooky, kooky, loupy time of the year! A time for dress-up and parties. Of course we'd like to have our dogs participate too. After all, they're family.

But there are hazards!
  • Skip the sweets. Candy that contains the artificial sweetener xylitol can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar in dogs, which leads to depression, lack of coordination and seizures.
  • Confiscate candy wrappers. Pets love to play with candy wrappers, but wrappers made of aluminum foil or cellophane can cause intestinal blockage and induce vomiting.
  • Forego trick-or-treating. During trick-or-treating hours, keep dogs in a room away from the front door to keep them from stealing candy or escaping the safety of home. Make sure your pets are wearing a collar with identification tags in case they accidentally get loose.
  • Beware of costumes. Halloween costumes should not limit a dog's movement, hearing, sight, or ability to breathe or bark. They should not pose a choking hazard. Consider festive Halloween bandanas as an alternative to costumes.
  • Ditch the decorations. Pets can easily knock over jack-o'-lanterns and start a fire or simply get burned by candles when sniffing the openings. Chewed cords and wires from decorations can damage a pet's mouth or deliver a potentially lethal electric shock.

As always, if you suspect that your dog has been poisoned, call the ASPCA's 24-hour poison control hotline: 888-426-4435.

Reprinted from Pet Age magazine, October 2008

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage
http://www.appma.org/ (American Pet Products Assocition)
http://www.akc.org/ (American Kennel Club)
http://www.aspca.org/ (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals)

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Save A Dog Adoption Day at The Doggie Den

Save A Dog is an all-breed rescue
organization out of Framingham, MA.

On Sat. Oct. 4th they held a Meet and Greet at The Doggie Den.
Every dog had more than one someone who wanted to adopt him or her.
'Cause they were all unbelievably cute - and so adoptable!

CHECK OUT SAVE A DOG AT http://www.saveadog.org/
Check out these dog links!
The Doggie Den Homepage

Friday, October 03, 2008

Persistent Puppy Pushes the Envelope


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The Doggie Den Homepage

Fall fleas and ticks

Ah, the cool, bright days of October! The kids are settled in school, moms and dads are adjusting to new schedules, and the leaves are turning. Best season of the year!

Fleas and ticks??? But it's COLD outside, especially at night. Right! So fleas and ticks are looking for a warm winter home. The ones that live in your lawn or garden, or on your porch are redoubling their efforts to hop onto any warm body that passes by, especially furry bodies. So pick through pup's and kitty's coats for ticks and signs of fleas (like black specks on the skin, red skin rashes or signs of excessive scratching).

The best idea is to continue using a spot-on product like Frontline Plus, Advantix, or Program right up until you've had several hard frosts in your area. In Massachusetts, at The Doggie Den, we keep our pups on Frontline Plus until Christmas, then we start up again in March.

The Doggie Den Homepage

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Back To School. Cut your pup some slack!

It's back to school time and the doggies feel the difference. Lenny here has his own homework to do, but lots of pups feel abandoned when the family schedule changes drastically. Often in the summer more family members are around more of the time. Now kids are in school all day, college students have gone away, and even those students who come home after school are busy with homework and getting their social lives back into gear.

Sometimes dogs who feel abandoned misbehave, like chewing furniture or other things, having accidents on the rug, howling when left alone, and digging holes in carpets or flooring. If your pup is alone during the school year, make sure he/she has lots of toys. Put treats in a kong or other toy that makes him or her work to get the goodies. Most of all, don't be surprised by the behavior and cut pup some slack! Lots of extra hugs and quality time when you can. Ask the kids to play with her or him when they get home from school.


We're taking fall registrations at The Doggie Den in Northboro, MA!
The Doggie Den Homepage

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Are There Poisonous Plants in Your Home?

As gardeners across the country say goodbye to summer, green thumbs and amateurs alike are scooping up houseplants to spice up the fall and winter months. They're also taking off their sunhats and dragging outdoor plans inside to protect them from upcoming dips in temperature. Plants are popular for their decorative, restorative, and air-cleaning properties, but many species are toxic to our curious furry friends. Soil and leaves attract dogs and cats who like to chew on vines and romp in the dirt. Here are some of the most poisonous best-sellers:

  • Lilies, including stargazer, tiger and Easter lilies. "Even with very small ingestions, severe kidney damage can result," according to Dr. Steven Hansen, veterinary toxicologist.

  • English ivy contains triterpenoid saponins which can cause vomiting, abdominal pain, hypersalivation and diarrhea if eaten.

  • Peace lily and pothos can cause irritation of the mouth, lips and tongue (peace lilies), and swelling of the GI tract (pothos).

  • Oleander is one of the most poisonous plants to pets and people. It can lead to GI irritation, abnormal heart function, hypothermia and even death.

Keep the nibbler in your life safe from toxic foliage by placing all plants out of reach. Or better yet, choose a nontoxic alternative to brighten your home. For a list of safe plants, go to http://www.aspca.org/: (Aug. 29th, 2008 News Alert, "Most Popular Poisonous Plants) where there's an alphabetical listing of safe house plants. As always, if you think your pet has ingested something poisonous, contact your vet or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center's 24-hour hotline at (888) 426-4435.

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The Doggie Den Homepage


Saturday, August 30, 2008

Dogs and Their Humans on vacation

Shuki, Benny and I are vacationing with our friends Lilly (2 legged) and Livia (4-legged) in Provincetown, MA. and I want to pass on to you how dog-friendly this place is! It's a little fishing village turned resort where there are lots of hotels, condo rentals, and rooms in B&B's where well-behaved dogs are welcome. It's wonderful how disciplined the dog owners are at Bayshore by the Sea, where we're staying. Everyone works hard to keep their pups quiet and they pick up poop. You almost never see poop on condo property or on the streets and the town is restful. Bayshore is at 493 Commercial St, Provincetown, MA, 508-487.9133. We're right on the water with beach view from our condo; plus the ocean beach (Herring Cove or Race Point Beach) is a 5-minute drive and it's National Seashore so dogs are allowed there too! There's wi-fi (which is why I'm able to post while on vaca).

Lots of other dog friendly accomodations too. Check out http://www.bayshorechandler.com/. Plus you'll meet oodles of other dog owners while out walking Commercial St, the main shopping and eating route. Some outdoor cafes allow dogs and it's lovely sippling a latte while your pup indulges in dog watching!

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage

Friday, August 15, 2008

Fleas Fleas Fleas

Summer is winding down, but one little pest is still thriving in warm, humid parts of the country like New England. Fleas are hearty and nimble; when searching for a host they can jump up to 2 feet, 10,000 times in a row - that adds up to the length of 3 football fields! They can also cause troublesome health problems in dogs such as anemia, skin allergies and tapeworms. These legendary leapers are tough to fight, but here are some tips that will rub your dog the right way:

  • Apply a monthly, veterinarian-approved anti-tick medication. Some of the good ones are Frontline Plus, Advantix, and Program. Don't miss a month, from March through November!!
  • Know your enemy: confirm your pet has fleas by identifying signs such as tiny black spots on the skin. These are droppings, sometimes known as "flea dirt". Also watch for excessive scratching and scabs.
  • Treat all of your pets, not just those who show outward signs of infestation.
  • Thoroughly clean your house, including rugs, bedding and upholstery, and discard any used vacuum bags.
  • Fleas love long grass and shady outdoor spots - remember to treat and maintain your yard as carefully as your house. Ask your vet about products for treating your yard.
  • NEVER use medications intended for dogs on cats, or vice versa! Dr. Steven Hansen, veterinary toxicologist and ASPCA Senior Vice President, says, "Just a few drops of concentrated permethrin, present in many spot-on treatments for dogs, can be lethal to cats".

And enjoy an itch-free end of summer!

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Doggie Den Best of Northboro!

Thank you to the U.S. Local Business Association for naming us "best of Northboro" for dog daycare!!

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The Doggie Den Homepage

Sometimes we're covered with dogs!

We love being at the bottom of a friendly dogpile! And we get to do it lots!

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The Doggie Den Homepage

Monday, August 11, 2008

My bone!

Hello, my name is Shimi and this is MY bone! Mine. You've seen the seagulls in "Finding Nemo"? MINE! MINE! It's exhausting, but I will guard this bone until my people come pick me up to take me home. After all, it's............. you guessed it, MINE.

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage

Little guys stick together!

We're some of the smaller guys at The Doggie Den. At you can see we like to stick together. The pack that snoozes together cruises together! The only problem is, you can probably see this a human two-seater couch. It's very hard to find room up here at nap time, especially if somebody decides to streeeettttch out. So Here I am, Reilly the 2nd guy from the left, the puggle and the most handsome one of the bunch, and I have to sit up while they all sleep. It's just not fair. So after this picture is taken, I'm gonna lay down on top of Cosmo, the black and white rat terrier to my left. He'll just have to put up with it. I hope he doesn't squirm 'cause I'd like to get some shut eye.

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The Doggie Den Homepage

Hi! I'm Bobby and I LOVE DOGS!

I'm Bobby and I work at The Doggie Den when I'm not in class at Quinsigamund Community College. It's a great place to work 'cause the other employees are mellow and the dogs are the best!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Go slow: Dogs at Play

Wouldn't your dog like to have fun this summer ??

Of course s/he would!!!

Call Susan at 508-393-6970 for a FREE daycare evaluation for your dog.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Buyer Beware! Unsafe Daycares

There are lots of veterinarians, groomers and kennel owners who decide to add dog daycare to their service offerings. Some are qualified to manage dogs in packs, but many are not. And many create environments that look cute but could be dangerous to your dog! Experienced daycare providers know that:

1. Every surface in the environment must be securely affixed, washable and disinfectable. None should be porous, loose, or permeable. No plaster (they'll eat it), curtains or hangings (they'll pee and vomit on them and tear them up); or ornate beds (they'll chew and swallow pieces).

2. No matter how well you supervise dogs at play, they're going to get into things they're not supposed to - so make sure there's nothing "verboten" in their environment.

3. The only objects the dogs have access to should be industry-approved toys and equipment. Beds and crates, for example must be washed and disinfected every day!

4. Toys should be examined DAILY to make sure they are not damaged or broken in such a way that a canine guest could get a piece lodged in his or her throat or intestines. For example rope toys made of string are a big no-no.

and last but not least

4. If it's too cute it's probably not a safe environment!

Some daycare play areas, for example, include fabric hangings that can be ripped and eaten; they also hold odors, bacteria and viruses. Rubber or other relatively porous flooring also retains germs and odors and can be dug or chewed up. Many daycare environments are designed to charm people, but are not right for dogs.

At The Doggie Den, all of our play areas are surrounded by sparkling clean ceramic tile walls. The floors are non-slip industrial pvc tiling that cannot be ripped up or chewed. Our toys are those recommended for daycare providers by the American Pet Care Association. Our beds and crates are also industry approved. The couches in the play areas are covered by removable, washable covers and are disinfected frequently.

Come see for yourself ! The Doggie Den is truly the best dog daycare in central Massachusetts.

The Doggie Den Homepage

The Well-Groomed Dog

At The Doggie Den Maria grooms your dog the way you like! Tell her what you want and she'll do it! Our prices are all-inclusive: a high end, all natural shampooing, a blow-dry, a haircut to your specs, trimmed or filed nails, and clean ears. For example meet Roxy, a lhasa apso that a customer brought to our salon all matted and messy. She was too embarassed for us to photograph her in that condition! The customer had been ill and unable to brush Roxy, so she needed Maria's help. Maria patiently dematted. bathed, conditioned and brushed Roxy's coat; and here's how she looked when she went home!

And here's a poodle when he arrived:

And here he is, ready to go home! (There's more light in the "before" picture, so it looks like a different dog from the "after", but it's the same guy!) Notice how much more self confidently he stands once he looks like a pro!

So would your pup like a makeover? Of course he would! Give us a call: 508-393-6970.
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The Doggie Den Homepage

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Ouch! Hot Tops!

Today I was at the bank and I saw a young man walking a fidgety black lab puppy from the bank across the blacktop to his car. It was about 90 degrees outside with bright sun beating down on the blacktop all day. I reached down to touch it and it was too hot for me to put my palm down flat. Imagine what it was like for that puppy!! And his owner was disciplining him for resisting.

This is one of my PET PEEVES. I know it's unintended cruelty but it still makes me crazy. July and August are months that can hurt doggie paws. Road and sidewalk surfaces get extremely hot and dogs will often not complain until their pads are actually burned. At The Doggie Den, our parking lot is blacktopped, so we recommend that customers pull right up to the door to avoid a hot trot. You might want to do the same wherever there's blacktop. Paw burns are one of the most unnoticed doggie discomforts of the summer!

Blacktop is the worst culprit, so if you can find a concrete, brick or light colored stone surface to walk your dog, go for it. If you must cross hot blacktop, do it quickly! Or better yet. CARRY YOUR DOG! Never stand with your dog on a hot surface. Of course, the best solution is to walk your pup on grass or dirt where your town or city permits. And it's always a good idea in extreme temps (hot or cold) to check your dog's paws frequently. Know their usual color and look for unusually dark or uneven spots.

If your dog whines, limps, or licks his or her pads after a walk, it's possible he or she has been burned. Ice down all four paws as best you can and call your vet right away!

Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Homage to Daphne

This morning I posted a picture of my new Sheltie puppy without stating the obvious. My beautiful Daphne has died. In fact she died a year ago (May 2007) and I guess I've been in mourning ever since. Haven't felt like posting on this blog since then. I've never had a connection to any living being like the one I had with Daphne. We just knew what each other needed without any adoo. She died with the same quiet dignity with which she lived: one day I picked her up to give her the subcutaneous fluids that she had needed since developing kidney disease, and she just sighed and rested her head on my chest. It took me a couple of beats to realize she was gone. Out of respect for who she was to me, I sat holding her for quite a while, thinking perhaps it would help her process of passing. I have no idea if dog's have souls or if they go on to something else when they die. But I hope that Daphne's spirit stays with us, for she was the most generous, accepting, and forgiving creature I've ever met.

Goodbye, Daphne, love. Thank you for sharing your life with me. You were the sugar in my bowl.

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The Doggie Den Homepage

Meet Shannon, The Doggie Den obedience trainer

Hi, I'm Shannon, The Doggie Den's lead obedience trainer, and these are my two spoiled huskeys. I do evening and weekend obedience classes, or I can meet with you in your home if there are problems you want to solve. We have a good time in class while we learn our commands and take some time for the dogs to play with each other. To sign up for one of my classes check out the schedule at www.thedoggieden.net/training. Remember well-trained dogs are much more fun to live with! Hope to see you soon!
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The Doggie Den Homepage

Susan's new puppy "Shuki" at 4 months

Meet Shuki, The Doggie Den's newest puppy. Susan bought her in March; she's the first puppy Susan's ever gotten from a breeder, hence her name: Shuki means "marketplace" in Hebrew. Shuki adapted to the playgroups at The Doggie Den without missing a beat. She loves to run around inviting others to chase her. If that doesn't work, she jumps on someone's back and bites their ears. Luckily she's gentle or she'd be in trouble! She's smart, funny and a ball to live with. Go Shelties!
Check out these dog links!

The Doggie Den Homepage