Lotsa Dogs Lotsa Fun

Lotsa Dogs Lotsa Fun
The Big Dogs Wait at The Door

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Make Your Own Dog Biscuits - Repost from SummerNanny

If you are like most dog owners your 4-legged friend is part of the family and as such you might want to make him some treats.  The treats at the grocery store are full of preservatives that are great if you want your dog treats to last for years, but why not make some yourself that will last a couple of weeks on the counter or a few months in the freezer.  With ingredients found in your pantry and about 10 minutes of your time you can have some healthy dog treats in the oven.
Step 1
Gather up the following ingredients:
  • 1 C. All-purpose flour
  • ¼ C. Whole oats (not quick cook)
  • ¼ C. of dried cranberries
  • ½ T. baking powder
  • ½ C. creamy peanut butter (organic if possible)
  • ½ C. milk
  • 1 T. Olive oil
  • 1 T. applesauce.
Step 2
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Mix the flour, oats, cranberries and baking powder together in a large bowl.  Add the peanut butter, milk, oil and applesauce to the dry ingredients and stir.
Step 3
Press the ingredients together and transfer them from the bowl to a lightly floured counter.  Knead the dough until it has come together into a nice ball.  If the dough seems too sticky add more flour a tablespoon at a time until the consistency is no longer sticky.  Set dough on a sheet of waxed paper and dust the dough and a rolling pin with flour and roll the dough out until it’s about ½ inch thick.  Using a bone shaped cookie cutter cut out the dog biscuits.  If you don’t have a bone shaped cookie cutter any other cutter will work.
Step 4
Transfer the cut-out shapes to an unlined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.  The remaining dough can be rerolled and cut into additional biscuits.
Step 5
When the biscuits have cooled completely store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for up to 6 months.  Allow biscuits to sit out for 10 to 20 minutes before serving from the freezer.
This recipe is adaptable, if your dog has an allergy to white flour substitute for the same amount of rice flour and bake as directed.
According to the FDA’s Center for Veterinarian Medicine dogs should not be given real bones to chew on, like those from a ham or roast.  Chewing on these bones could cause choking, broken teeth, tongue injuries and many more.  Dog biscuits are a safer option.
To dress up the dog biscuits for gift giving, dip one end of the dog biscuit into some melted carob (artificial chocolate) and allow the dipped biscuits to cool on a sheet of waxed paper until the carob has hardened completely.  Carob is safe for dogs, but you should never give dogs real chocolate because some dogs may have a severe allergic reaction.  Fill a cellophane bag with some dipped dog biscuits and tie it with some ribbon.  Add the bag of biscuits to a basket filled with a ball, a leash and some other fun dog gifts for a fun gift basket that would be perfect for any dog lover, or give just the bag of biscuits to all of your friends and neighbors who own dogs.
Make larger dog biscuits for bigger dogs and mini-sized biscuits for your petite dog friends.
With very little effort you can have homemade dog treats for your dog.  The benefits of making your own dog treats are that you can control the ingredients, save money, customize the recipe to match your dog’s preferences or dietary needs, and you can make as many as you need.  Try making some dog biscuits today and your pet will surely thank you

Check out these dog links!
The Doggie Den Homepage

Monday, October 01, 2012

Doggie Daycare Can Increase Your Dog's Social Skills

If you’ve adopted a dog that was in need of a forever home, CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve done a wonderful thing, and your new family member will bring you joy every day.

Adopted dogs come from all kinds of backgrounds, but there’s one common denominator. Most have been in environments where there was limited social interaction. At best, foster homes sometimes provide the opportunity to play with one permanent pet; or your new pet may have occasionally romped in a dog park. However , chances are your dog has been crated or caged a good percentage of the time, for example in a rescue organization’s kennel. At any rate, none of the usual situations allows a pup to meet new play pals and new people under the supervision of skilled dog professionals.

In fact, dogs often acquire bad habits when left to play unsupervised, like getting what they want through dominance or aggression. It’s a bit like a school yard: if there are no adults around, some kids turn into bullies. Similarly, dogs with limited social skills tend to jump up when meeting a new person in order to be at the person’s level and to try to monopolize his or her attention.
The role of a dog daycare attendant is to interrupt behaviors that aren’t acceptable, just like monitoring adults on a kids’ playground. With dogs, though, the line between excitement and aggression is quite thin. Rambunctious play easily explodes into a fight - it’s just the nature of the beast. In the wild, dogs use play to practice their hunting skills, and there’s some of that predatory instinct left in pet dogs.

Trained daycare attendants know when to step in between pups who are overly excited before any aggression shows up. The pups get affectionate praise for toning down the intensity of their play, and are separated (and possibly crated for a couple of minutes) if they insist on being rough with each other.

The best environment for your dog to play safely with other dogs and to meet new people is a doggie daycare. Good doggie daycares hire and train their staff with a view to creating just the right environment for maximum fun and minimum risk. There are rules for meeting a new person, like not jumping up on him or her. Dogs learn to say hello by wagging their tail and looking at the new person with a doggie “smile”. Pushing or scaring other dogs away in order to be first in line for attention leads to a “time out” rather than to affectionate attention; as does mounting another dog, excessive barking or trying to monopolize all of the available toys (this is called “resource guarding”).

Appropriate play leads to praise and cuddles and games of fetch with a daycare attendant.
So taking your pet to a good daycare a couple of times a week has the benefit of improving his social skills, which makes him lots of fun to have around. Because the dog has a life outside your home, he will also acquire self confidence. Pup will feel fine about being away from family for the day; and even better about being picked up at night! And the big plus for owners is that after a hard day at work, you come home to an exhausted pup who just wants to curl up next to you in the evening.

Of course, it’s important to check out a daycare before leaving your dog there. Get references from people who are or have been longtime customers. Ask around to see if dog owners have heard of the establishment. Your vet may also be a good source of information about local daycares. Look for one where the employees have lots of dog experience, and the canine guests get to play, without being crated for most of the day. 

Check out these dog links!
The Doggie Den Homepage