Be the BEST First-Time Dog Owner!


Are you getting a dog for the first time in your life?

What can you expect? How should you prepare?

Be the best first-time dog owner with the tips below!

 

It’s important to get the right type of dog. Emotions can run wild when you start your search (especially with those huge puppy eyes!), but before you commit yourself to a particular breed, do some research first.

 

Things to Consider before Adopting a Dog

Considering a big or even giant-breed dog? Without proper training, they can be difficult to restrain even on a leash and transport. Active breeds like Shepherds, Labs, Weimaraners, Huskies and any Sporting, Working, Hunting or Herding dogs all need a great deal of exercise, especially in the first five years of their lives. (Be prepared to walk them for at least an hour a day, maybe more.) Without proper exercise and training on a daily basis, large dogs can quickly become unmanageable and exhibit a variety of behavioral problems. With that being said, big dogs may work out really well for runners and frisbee enthusiasts as most have greater endurance than smaller breeds.

Even if you have a fenced-in yard, your dog will still require regular and adequate exercise and socialization.

Do you suffer from allergies? If you do, you may also be allergic to dogs. If you are, you will need to take that into consideration when choosing a dog. If you have your heart set on getting a dog, consider breeds that shed very little, like Poodles and Portuguese water dogs (like the First Dog, Bo).

Another important consideration is the size and nature of your home. If you are renting, for instance, you need to check with your landlord first about what kind of dog, if any, is allowed. Many landlords will allow small dogs, but not the larger breeds. Before adopting a Pitbull or Staffordshire Terrier, check your local ordinances for any breed restrictions in your community. Denver and Miami, for instance, still outlaw Pitbulls and even dogs that look like them.

Also, keep in mind that many landlords today require pet deposits or even monthly “pet rent” if you have a dog in the residence.

Consider rescue first. According to the ASPCA, animal shelters take in 7.6 million dogs and cats each year. Unfortunately, only 2.7 million are adopted each year. When you adopt a rescue or shelter dog, you are saving two lives; the dog you adopt and the dog who will take his now-available place.

Still not sure what breed is right for you? Take this quick quiz at Dogtime.com and find out in just 21 quick questions!

 

Preparing Your Home for Your New Dog

Before bringing Fido into your home, review it relative to the safety of your dog and your belongings. Keep in mind that happy dog tails can be disastrous to fragile knick-knacks, plants and more. Relocate such items to out-of-reach shelves or protected cabinets for your dog’s safety. Also keep food, candy and potential poisonous plants out of reach of inquisitive noses and mouths.

Also buy a comfy (and easy-to-clean) dog bed and/or dog crate that will become your dog’s comfort zone. Dog crates are wonderful training tools for both puppies and older dogs; it gives them a “safe place” to go when they get tired or are overwhelmed.

 

You’ll also need a collar, leash or harness, dog bowls, dog toys to keep your dog busy (and distracted from inappropriate chewing) and a well-formulated dog food. Local experts can help you make the best, well-informed choices.

Bonding with Your Dog

Congratulations! You’ve done your homework and found the best breed for you and your lifestyle and have prepared your home for the new four-legged arrival!

Remember, your dog will need a period of adjustment after you adopt him and bring him home.

Patience will help make the adjustment easier and facilitate a stronger bond.

Dogs may cry, bark or whine a lot their first few days in a new place. They may want to hide in closets or under the bed. Food may be a great motivator when it comes  to helping your K9 adjust more easily (or a toy depending on your dog’s preference). Put the food (or toy) within sight and smell of your new dog; but not in their hiding spot. When he comes out to eat (or play), praise him. If he lets you, give him some reassuring pats. Before long, your dog will begin to trust both you and his surroundings. Daily brushing can also help build trust.

Make sure to walk your new dog around the neighborhood and let him get used to the new sights, smells and sounds. Introduce him to new people and dogs of all sizes. This helps build their confidence. Take your time and never force your dog to do something he seems uncomfortable in doing.

Invest in dog training! Not only will this enhance your bond with your dog, but it will also help head off or address any bad habits or negative behaviors. Dog classes or one-on-one training are both beneficial.

 

Dog ownership is, without a doubt, one of the greatest joys of life. Whether you are bringing home a new puppy or an older dog, you will enjoy many years of unconditional love by following these tips.

 

Photos By Pixabay.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jessica Brody is an avid dog lover and passionate advocate for rescue pets. She created OurBestFriends.pet to offer an online place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth and enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.


 

RECALLS: The Dog Food Recalls Continue …

Recent recalls include products made by:

  • K9 Natural
  • Vital Essentials
  • OC Raw Dog

Below are the latest recalls since our last blog post.

 


K9 Natural Ltd

On April 13th, K9 Natural Ltd of New Zealand voluntarily recalled four batches of its K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (the 2.2 and 11lb bags) that were imported to the United States in June 2017. The recall was issued due to potential Listeria monocytogenes.

The recall involves:

K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (2.2 lb bags):

Shipped to distributors/pet speciality retail stores in WA, CA, TX and CO with the batch #170517 and an expiration date of 17NOV2018.

K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (11 lb bags):

Shipped to distributors/pet speciality retail stores in WA, CA, TX, CO and PA with the following batch numbers:

  • #150517 (expiration date of 15NOV2018)
  • #160517 (expiration date of 16NOV2018)
  • #170517 (expiration date of 17NOV2018)

There have been no reports of illness.

Customers with questions may contact the company via phone at 1 888 345 4680, M-F 8am-5pm PST & EST and S-S 14 &15 April 2018 8am-5pm PST & EST or email info@k9natural.com.

Click here to learn more about the K9 Natural recall.

 


 

Vital Essentials

For the third time,  another recall was issued on two Vital Essentials products: Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Toppers and Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Chub Entree for Dogs due to potential Salmonella contamination.

Salmonella can infect both dogs, cats and humans.

The recalled products can be identified with the following information:

 

Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Toppers: Lot #13815, Best by 06/04/19

Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Chub Entrée: 5 lb., Lot #13816, Best by 12/27/18

Customers may notify their retailer for a replacement or refund or contact the company at 920-370-6542.

Click here to learn more about the Vital Essentials recall.


OC Raw Dog

OC Raw Dog of Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, issued a voluntary recall of approximately 1,560 lbs of their Chicken, Fish & Produce Raw Frozen Canine Formulation due to potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

The affected products were manufactured on October 11, 2017 with a Lot number of 3652 and a Use By Date of October 11, 2018.

The recalled Lot #3652 was shipped and sold to Independent Speciality Retailers in the following states: CA, CO, FL, MD, MN, PA and VT.

Click here to read more about the OC Raw Dog recall. 

NOTE: Another recall was also issued by OC Raw Dog for its Freeze-dried Sardines because the product exceeded FDA size restrictions (of 5 inches). (The FDA has determined that salt-cured, dried or fermented un-eviscerated fish larger than 5 inches have been linked to outbreaks of botulism poisoning between 1981 and 1987 and then again in 1991.)

Click here to read more about the OC Raw Dog recall for Freeze-dried Sardines. 

 


 

We try our best to keep our readers informed with the latest recall information (here on our blog and on our Twitter/Facebook pages); unfortunately that’s not always possible. To stay informed with the latest recalls, subscribe to one (we recommend all) of the recall alerts below.

Your pet is counting on you.

Dog Food Advisor

Truth About Pet Food 

American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMA)

US Food & Drug Administration (FDA)

RECALLS: What You MUST Know

(Note: We’ve been trying to publish this post since February. But with the constant barrage of recalls, it’s been almost impossible to stay up-to-date with all the information.)

The last few months have been nothing short of frightening when it comes to recalls and our beloved pets. Unfortunately, we’ve all become a bit immune to seeing recall announcements here and there. But as the few months have clearly shown, recalls are on the rise particularly with the bacterial contamination of Salmonella which can infect dogs, cats and humans.

 

Recent recalls include products made by:

  • J.M. Smucker Company: Gravy Train, Kibbles ‘N Bits, Ol’ Roy & Skippy
  • Northwest Naturals
  • Vital Essentials
  • TruPet
  • Smokehouse Pet Products
  • Redbarn Pet Products
  • Raws for Paws
  • Darwin’s Natural Pet Products
  • Blue Ridge Beef
  • J.M. Smucker Company: Milo’s Kitchen Dog Treats
  • Blue Buffalo Company
  • Radagast Pet Food
  • Steve’s Real Food
  • Raw Basics
  • An Update on the Deadly Chinese Jerky Treats

 

Keep reading to learn more about each recall.


J.M. Smucker (Dogs & Cats)

In early February, traces of pentobarbital (a drug used to euthanize cats, dogs and horses) were found in Gravy Train canned dog food. The findings came out of an  ABC station’s investigation (WJLA in Washington, DC). The investigation found pentobarbital in 9 out of 15 cans (or 60%) of Gravy Train dog food. Over months of testing and re-testing, WJLA News tested a total of 62 samples of dog food.

Sourcing meat for pet food from a “diseased animal or an animal that has died otherwise than by slaughter” is a direct violation of federal law (Section 342(a)).

The Smucker Company (Orrvile, OH) later expanded the recall to include certain lots of Gravy Train, Kibbles ‘N Bits, Ol’ Roy and Skippy wet dog food products.

 Click here to learn more about the original recall and the affected SKUs/UPC codes.

(UPDATE: A day after the story broke on February 8th, a class action lawsuit was filed against Big Heart Brands Gravy Train for advertising, misrepresenting and selling contaminated dog foods.)

(NOTE: J.M. Smucker also recalled certain lots of canned cat food in January. Click here to learn more about this limited voluntary recall.)


Northwest Naturals

Near the end of February, Northwest Naturals of Portland Oregon, issued a recall for its 5lb frozen Chicken and Salmon pet food chubs (sealed plastic tubes) due to potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

While no pet or human illnesses were reported, Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product.

Click here to learn more about this recall.

 


Vital Essentials

Again at the end of February, Carnivore Meat Company of Green Bay, WI, recalled 73 cases of Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Nibblets Entree for Dogs pet food due to potential Salmonella contamination.

The affected product was distributed through both independent and online retailers, Chewys.com and Amazon.com. Salmonella can infect both dogs, cats and humans. The contamination was found following the Michigan Department of Agriculture’s collection of a single batch, retail sample that tested positive. There have been no reports of illness.

Click here to learn more about the Vital Essentials recall.

 


 

TruPet

Another recall during the last week of February included a limited recall from TruPet of Milford, OH, for their “Treat Me Crunchy Beef Delight” 2.5 oz pet treats due to possible Salmonella contamination.

Click here to learn more about the TruPet/TruDog treat recall.

 

 


Smokehouse Pet Products

 

On February 19th, the FDA announced a recall of Beefy Munchies dog treats by Smokehouse Pet Products of Sun Valley, CA.  The recall included all sizes and package types (including individual bags, resealable bags and plastic tubs (labeled “Beefy Bites”) due to possible Salmonella contamination.

The recall was issued after routine sampling and testing by the Colorado Department of Agriculture revealed Salmonella in two 4-oz packages.

Click here to read more about the Smokehouse Pet Products Beefy Munchies recall. 

 


Redbarn Pet Products

In early March, Redbarn Pet Products of Long Beach, CA, expanded its original recall (of February 9th) to include all lots of their Bully Sticks under the brand names of Chewy Louie, Dentley’s and Good Lovin’.

The presence of Salmonella was revealed through testing by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. The investigation led to a raw ingredient from a single supplier as the source. The affected products were distributed in pet speciality and grocery retail stores nationwide.

Click here to learn more about the recall and click here to view all 25 recalled products and their images.

 


Raws for Paws

In early February, approximately 4,000 pounds of Ground Turkey Pet food were recalled by Raws for Paws of Minneapolis, MN because of the potential presence of Salmonella.

Both the 1- and 5-pound chubs (sealed plastic tubes) were including in the recall. The affected product was distributed throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and through online mail orders.

Two illnesses were reported in connection with this recall. The recall was issued after testing by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture returned positive results.

Click here to learn more about the Raws for Paws recall of Ground Turkey Pet Food. 

 


Darwin’s Natural Pet Products

Another early February recall involved two Darwin’s Pet Food products (of Tukwila WA):

  • ZooLogics Chicken Meals with Organic Vegetables for Dogs; and
  • ZooLogics Turkey with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs.

Testing revealed the presence of Salmonella. According to Gary Tashjian, the Founder of Darwin’s Pet Products, customers who received these meals were notified directly. Darwin’s Natural Pet Products are sold exclusively through a subscription service directly to their customers.

Just a few days ago, the recall was expanded to include a total of four lots of products. The following products were also added to the recall with the potential of Salmonella and E. Coli (0128):

  • Natural Selections Chicken with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs; and
  • Natural Selections Duck with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs.

Click here to learn more about the expanded recall of Darwin’s Pet Food products.

 


Blue Ridge Beef (Dogs & Kittens)

Front Chub package BRB Complete; Back of Chub package with Nutrition InformationAgain, just a few days ago, another recall was issued, this time for Blue Ridge Beef (BRB) of Eatonton, GA. The recall involves one lot of its BRB Complete Raw pet food because of the potential presence of both Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes. The affected product is sold in 2-pound chubs (sealed plastic tubes) and are frozen. The recall only affects the following states:

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • North and South Carolina
  • Tennessee

The contamination was revealed after samples were collected and tested by the FDA.

To learn more about the Blue Ridge Beef recall, click here.

NOTE: On March 2nd, Blue Ridge Beef also issued a recall for one lot of their Kitten Grind Raw Pet Food again for the potential contamination of both Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes. Click here to learn more about this recall.

 


J.M. Smucker Company (Milo’s Kitchen Dog Treats)

Just a few days again, the J.M. Smucker Company issued another recall for two specific lots of Milo’s Kitchen dog treats. The treats potentially contain elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone. Dogs ingesting elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone may exhibit symptoms like increased thirst and urination, weight loss, increased heart rate and restlessness. While these symptoms may resolve themselves once the affected product is no longer fed, prolonged consumption can result in serious vomiting, diarrhea and rapid and/or labored breathing. 

Click here to learn more about the recall and the affected UPC codes.

 


Blue Buffalo Company

Earlier this month, Blue Buffalo (Wilton, CT) issued a recall of one lot of its BLUE Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs because of the possibility of elevated levels of beef thyroid hormones.

Dogs ingesting elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone may exhibit symptoms like increased thirst and urination, weight loss, increased heart rate and restlessness. While these symptoms may resolve themselves once the affected product is no longer fed, prolonged consumption can result in serious vomiting, diarrhea and rapid and/or labored breathing. 

NOTE: Blue Buffalo Pet Food was recently purchased by General Mills (the makers of Cheerios, Haagen-Dazs, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury and Old El Paso.

Click here to read more about the Blue Buffalo recall. 

 


Radagast Pet Food (Cats)

The Portland, OR company, Radagast Pet Food, Inc., is recalling two lots of their products as of March 20th due to the potential of Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

The two recipes being recalled include:

  • Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Chicken; and
  • Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Turkey.

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product.

Click here to learn more about the Radagast Cat Food recall and the two lots affected.

 


Steve’s Real Food

Earlier this month, Steve’s Real Food (Cottonwood, UT) issued a recall for its Raw Frozen Dog Food Turkey Canine Recipe after testing positive for Salmonella.

The affected lot (52 cases) involved their frozen 5-pound bags of turkey nuggets. They were distributed to retail pet food stores in the following states:

 

 

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • North Dakota
  • Nebraska
  • New Jersey
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington

To learn more about the Steve’s Real Food recall, click here.


Raw Basics

Another frozen raw pet food issued a recall on March 6th. Raw Basics of Pleasant Prairie, WI, recalled its 5-pound boxes of Tucker’s Raw Frozen Pork-Bison Dog Food for potential Salmonella contamination.

The presence of Salmonella was revealed after testing done by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. The contamination was isolated to one lot of 108 boxes (540 pounds) and distributed to pet specialty retail stores in Minnesota, Georgia, Kansas and Pennsylvania.

Click here to learn more about the Raw Basics recall.

 


An Update on the Deadly Chinese Jerky Treats

It’s happened again, this time in Oklahoma with a 4-year-old Yorkie.

Within hours of eating of chicken jerky dog treats with “all natural farm fresh ingredients” sourced from China, Zoe was dead.

It’s been over 11 years since imported food and treats from China have been harming – and even killing – our pets. Yet the treats still sit on store shelves for unsuspecting customers to buy and feed to their pets.

If you thought someone is looking out and protecting both you and your beloved pets, think again. If you’re looking for obvious information and disclosures about the treats you buy, think again too.

Read ALL the print, especially the tiny print buried on the back of the package (as illustrated below with the treats that killed Zoe, sold at Walmart).

With no answers from the FDA’s years-long investigative research, but with pets still being sickened and dying, become your own best advocate and learn all you can about what you feed your pet. Until safety takes precedent over profits, your pet’s health is in potential danger.

Click here to read more about unsafe Chinese jerky treats.

Click here to read Zoe’s story.

 


 

We try our best to keep our readers informed with the latest recall information (here on our blog and on our Twitter/Facebook pages); unfortunately that’s not always possible. To stay informed with the latest recalls, subscribe to one (we recommend all) of the recall alerts below.

Your pet is counting on you.

Dog Food Advisor

Truth About Pet Food 

American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMA)

US Food & Drug Administration (FDA)

RECALL: Just Food for Dogs

Just Food for Dogs has issued their first-ever recall after a report from a customer of vomiting and diarrhea after her dogs ate their Turducken product.

In a detailed email from Founder, Shawn Buckley, it was confirmed that one batch of Turducken special (made in their West Hollywood kitchen and code dated: WH 11/18/18) did test positive for Listeria. The dogs who were affected were switched to another food and made a full recovery, without veterinarian intervention, within a day.

Why the Recall

The returned Turducken food was tested and subsequently confirmed the presence of Listeria. The source of the contamination has been traced to the human-grade green beans used in the Turducken recipe.

Based on these preliminary results, Just Food for Dogs is voluntarily:

  • Expanding the Turducken recall to all batch dates.
  • Recalling two other recipes containing green beans:
    • Beef & Russet Potato; and
    • Fish & Sweet Potato.
  • Notifying the FDA as the contaminated green beans may also affect the human food supply.

Severe disease from Listeria in dogs is rare. In fact, Listeria is of more concern to humans. Healthy dogs may experience no signs from listeria contamination, but elderly or weakened dogs may experience vomiting and/or diarrhea.

What to do Next

Consumers are urged to properly dispose of any affected product.

Consumers may also email (support@JustFoodForDogs.com) or call (866-726-9509) Just Food for Dogs for an immediate refund. Shawn Buckley can be reached directly at shawnb@JustFoodForDogs.com or 949-378-2927.

 

Source: Truth About Pet Food: Just Food for Dogs Pet Food Recall.

New Year’s Eve and Your Dog

Now that Christmas has moved on, it’s time to give some thought to the upcoming New Year’s Eve celebrations … and your dog. While we humans love the excitement, parties and fireworks, it’s important to realize that not all dogs agree with our enthusiasm!

Last year, we wrote a very detailed post on planning ahead for the New Year’s celebrations in order to help your dog enjoy the time safely and calmly. You can read it here.

This year, we want to focus specifically on fireworks. We are incredibly lucky that our Great Danes actually enjoy fireworks no matter the time of year! They always join us outside on the deck and watch the show over Lake Tahoe. But not all dogs are so placid when it comes to loud noises and bright, unpredictable bursts of light and color.

How does YOUR dog react?

Just like humans, each dog reacts differently to loud noises. (A personal note: after living in a war zone for several years, fireworks were very difficult for me to deal with after returning to the United States. Finally, after many years, I can enjoy them without flinching.)

Remember, your dog’s hearing is ultra-sensitive. According to PetMeds.org:

The frequencies that dogs hear are much higher and lower than what humans can hear. Dogs hear a frequency range of 40 to 60,000 Hz while a human range is between 20 and 20,000 Hz. Because of this, dogs have a difficult time with very loud noises. Sounds that may be acceptable to you can be uncomfortable to a dog.

Is it any wonder that fireworks can rattle even the most tranquil dog?

So, is Your Dog Afraid?

When dogs are afraid, they exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Cowering or hiding
  • Barking or growling
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Clinging to their owners

Changes in Energy are Also Important

Another important fact to remember is that all dogs feel energy. Some energy is expressed in frequencies, waves and vibrations; including light and sound. This is why some dogs become overwhelmed with the onslaught of both the sights and sounds of fireworks.

Options for a Sound-Sensitive Dog

The following are suggestions; always discuss the best option with your own veterinarian. (Note: We are not compensated for any of the suggested products below.)

  • Wear them out with exercise earlier in the day
  • Distract them with play or their favorite toy or bone
  • Provide a “safe” place; a quiet room (close the windows and curtains) or crate
  • Massage
  • Calming Wraps:
  • Play canine-friendly “healing” frequencies or sound therapy
  • Homeopathic Remedies:
  • Aromatherapy/Essential Oils:
    • lavender, chamomile, ylang ylang, valerian, valor and vetiver):
      1. Spray a small amount on your hands and massage your dog (including their chest and paws) or spray some on a bandana and tie loosely around the neck)
      2. Mist your house, dog beds and favorite hiding spots with an oil/water blend

Please Help Us Help Others.

The holidays are a wonderful time for most of us. Families come together and create new, happy memories, eat lots of wonderful food and eagerly open presents.

But for many people, the winter season can be a difficult time trying to stay warm and still have enough food to eat for not only themselves and their children, but also for their furry family members.

Please support your local pantries to help those in need. The simpliest things can mean the most to those who need help. And let us know about the pet pantries in your area so we can add them to our website to help even more people this holiday season.

Email us directly at Bobbie@ColdNosesNews.com, click on the images to email us or leave a message below.

Thank you and Happy Holidays everyone!

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