Is Driving With Your Dog Dangerous?

Road trips are fun on their own, but bringing your furry best friend can make it even better. According to a recent study, over 80% of dog owners drive with their pets in the car. Not only is it convenient to bring your dog along, it can give them something to look forward to. For many dogs, riding in the car with the windows down is a treat. 

Unfortunately, driving with dogs is not always a fun time. Without proper restraints or training, dogs can interfere with the task of driving and put everyone in the car in danger. If you plan on cruising with your canine companion, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Consider the Back Seat

The ideal place for your dog is in the back seat. By having your dog in the back seat, they are protected in the event of a head-on collision. Airbags are not made for pets and can crush the dog or inflict fatal injuries in the event of an accident. According to Richmond car accident lawyer Christina Pendleton, “The aftermath of a car accident is undoubtedly chaotic.” By having them strapped in the back seat, this will eliminate most distractions and death if you’re involved in a car crash.

Keep Them Restrained

A strap or dog car seat can keep your dog from moving around the vehicle and possibly causing a major accident. Try out different car seats to see what works best for your pup and is the most comfortable for them for both short-term and long-term travel when it comes to driving with your dog

All Heads/Limbs Should Stay Inside The Vehicle

It’s common to see a dog sticking their head out of a passenger or driver’s side window while driving down the street. The rush of fresh air and wind in their ears can be an exhilarating experience. Unfortunately, this is not safe for anyone involved. Having their head or limbs outside of the vehicle can tempt a dog to jump out into traffic, possibly getting injured or causing another car accident. Feel free to roll your windows down but not low enough for your pet to hang outside of it. 

Do Not Leave Them Alone

As tempting as it can be to leave your dog in the car while you run into the store for five minutes, it can be extremely dangerous for your dog. On a hot day, the temperature inside a car is much higher than it is outside and degrees can sometimes soar into the hundreds. Leave your dog at home or drop them off at home before you go run errands in establishments where they are not welcome. 

As fun as driving with your dog can be, you should keep safety in mind above all else. As long as you ensure that your dog is strapped in and is a limited distraction, you can continue to enjoy life on the road with your furry friend! 

What To Do When Your Dog Is Attacked By Another Dog

Taking your furry friend to a dog-friendly location is one of the best parts of owning a pet. Besides being able to bring your dog out with you while you enjoy dinner or run errands, your dog will have a chance to experience a different environment and enjoy socializing with other people and dogs. But what happens if your precious pooch is attacked by another dog during an outing? 

If your dog has been attacked and seriously injured due to the negligence of another dog owner, it’s important that you understand your rights. Learn more about what your next steps are below.

Assess Your Dog’s Injuries 

It’s important to do a thorough check of your dog in the presence of the other owner to ensure all injuries are correctly documented. Have your dog walk around to check for limping or if they are stumbling and can’t seem to stay balanced. Additionally, take a close look at yourself and how you feel in case you were injured while trying to break the dogs up. According to Seattle personal injury attorney Janelle Bailey, “Dog bites can be physically and emotionally traumatic.”

Trade Information With The Owner

If your dog initially seems to be okay, it’s still important to trade information with the other owner in case injuries show up later. Soft-tissue injuries and internal injuries can show up later and may need medical attention. Ask for copies of the owners’ license and pet’s license, and vaccination records. 

Get Your Dog Medical Help

If your dog has visible bite marks and bleeding, do not hesitate to take your dog to the vet’s office. Dogs carry a variety of bacteria in their mouths that can be deadly or cause a serious infection. 

Monitor Your Dog’s Behavior

In the hours and days after your dog has been attacked, watch your dog’s behavior closely. It’s important to continue on with your regular routine to prevent your dog from becoming fearful of encountering new dogs or new situations. Changes in mannerisms are expected due to the traumatic event but if your dog is displaying signs of aggression, lethargy or extreme irritation, contact your vet as soon as possible.

Regardless of whether it lasted a few seconds or a few minutes, dog attacks can be an extremely traumatic event for everyone involved. Take the necessary steps after the attack to protect both yourself and your dog from any further problems. 

Can I Get A Dental Disease From Kissing My Dog?

One of the best parts about owning a canine companion is the endless amounts of love and affection that comes with it. According to a recent study by the organic dog treat company, Riley’s Organics, roughly 52% of dog owners admitted to kissing their dogs more than their partners. While it’s a sweet gesture, are there hidden dangers lurking behind those slobbery kisses that can impact your health?

There’s an old saying about how a dog’s mouth is cleaner than a toilet bowl, but it’s exactly that – just a saying. Your dog engages in a lot of less-than-sterile activities, such as cleaning themselves, licking up spills on the kitchen floor and chewing sticks from the park. 

According to research, dogs and humans share several of the same types of bacteria that can cause gum disease. While studies are still being done regarding the risk of catching a periodontal disease, the overall verdict is that there is a very little risk when it comes to catching it from kissing your pet. In many cases, most transfers of bacteria between pets and humans with weak immune systems result in upset stomachs, diarrhea, and fevers. 

If you worry about maintaining good dental health so you can continue to smooch your pooch, work with a dentist that covers all areas of treatment, such as the Phoenix family dentist at Dental on Central. The team of sedation and special needs dentists in Phoenix specializes in regular check-ups and gum disease treatment. 

Overall, there are no definitive studies that show you can catch a dental disease from your pup, so go ahead and shower your furry friend with love!

How Is Dog Custody Determined in a Divorce?

The process of divorce can be an extremely stressful time for everyone involved, right down to the dog. Owning a pet together is a major milestone in many relationships, with few couples thinking about what would happen to their canine companion should they separate. For many, the thought of no longer living with or seeing their beloved pet is just as bad as having to share custody with a former partner. If you are facing divorce in the near future and are worried about what will happen to your pet, it’s important to understand how pet custody works in the court of law.

What is Pet Custody?

Pet custody is another term related to an owner and dog relationship. Pet custody is usually established by who the dog lives with, who takes physical care of the dog and who is financially responsible for the dog. Because in many cases, a dog is a shared purchase with finances related to care split down the middle, this can become a complicated part of the divorce process.

How is Pet Custody Decided?

In most states, a dog is considered to be property. According to the Boston property division attorney at Wilkinson & Finkbeiner, “The division of estates of the parties upon divorce is supposed to entail a final assignment of their property, not subject to modification.” There are no special statuses’ for dogs under the law and they are not considered the same as children. Currently, people are moving to have this changed. In some cases, judges make rulings that involve visitation with the pet and shared finances related to care. 

Before the ruling, a judge is interested in the following factors such as: 

  • Who cared for the pet? (Feeding, grooming, healthcare)
  • Who spent the most time with the pet? (Testimonies may be required)
  • Where the parties will live after the divorce 
  • Who will provide the best environment for the pet
  • Who will have primary custody of the child/children after the divorce

Create a Shared Pet Parenting Plan

If possible, working out a parenting plan for the dog with your ex-partner might be the best for all parties involved. Depending on your schedules, create an arrangement that will allow everyone to maintain a positive relationship with the animal. 

Dogs are used to having a regular schedule so if their routine is disrupted, they may act out. Be flexible and patient, as there will be an adjustment period for them. Also, it’s important to work out an agreement regarding the pet’s expenses. Create a shared account that is strictly for the pet and their needs, including grooming, vet bills, food, dog-walkers, and toys. 

Divorce is a stressful and traumatic process for everyone involved. Having a furry friend nearby as a familiar comfort can help ease the process and help both parties work towards a positive co-parenting relationship moving forward.

4 Ways Dogs Are Helpful for Children Coping With Divorce

Divorce can be a traumatizing experience, especially for the younger children that are in the middle of it. It can trigger feelings of insecurity and abandonment. 

It’s important to ensure that there is a solid support system in place, whether that’s with friends, family or with a pet. It’s been proven that pets, especially dogs, can help reduce stress, depression, anxiety, and ease loneliness over time. If your child is struggling, here are 5 reasons a dog could help them with the transition that comes with divorce. 

A Canine Confidant: Most children like to talk to their pets and see them as a trusted friend who they can share everything with. From their deepest fears to their biggest dreams, dogs provide a trusted ear to listen attentively and without judgment. Although they may not be able to respond, dogs encourage children to express their feelings honestly. 

An Added Sense of Security: According to Indianapolis child support lawyer, Angela Trapp, “When a divorce case involves children, resolving issues regarding their care and wellbeing can be especially delicate.” Introducing a dog to a child in the middle of a divorce will give them another source to help them feel secure during this uncertain time.

Lower Stress Levels: According to numerous studies, dogs can reduce stress in people, resulting in lower blood pressure and heart rates. For a child, a dog would be an extremely valuable tool for coping with the new life changes that divorce brings. Dogs are seen as a source of joy and laughter, as well as a reminder of how much fun life can be! 

Provide Unconditional Love: Dogs have always been a great source of unconditional love and support. During a time where everything is changing and there is so much instability, a beloved dog will always be there to love and comfort them.

Having a trusted buddy during a stressful time is a wonderful way to stay positive. If you are worried about your child and how they will cope with your divorce, consider adding a new furry friend to the family!

Understanding Dog Anxiety: Symptoms & Treatment

Just like their human friends, dogs can experience anxiety as well. All breeds can experience dog anxiety but ultimately, it can affect each dog differently. While it’s normal and healthy to experience anxiety occasionally, dogs who experience disproportionate levels of anxiety are more likely to have it turn into a full-blown disorder. If these issues are not tackled early on, this disorder can lead to behavioral issues including aggression, depression and compulsive behaviors. 

Not sure if your dog has anxiety? Continue reading to learn more about the common causes, symptoms and treatments for dog anxiety.

Common Causes of Dog Anxiety

According to studies, there are three types of dog anxiety including fear anxiety, separation anxiety, and aging anxiety. 

Fear-related anxiety can be triggered by many things, such as loud noises, visual stimuli, new or strange environments, or strange animals and people. Most dogs will have a brief reaction to these factors, but dogs with anxiety will have a longer-lasting reaction.

Separation anxiety is unable to be comfortable when they are separated from their family members or when left alone. This represents itself in disruptive behavior such as barking and destroying furniture. 

Age-related anxiety is more often seen in older dogs when their memory, learning and awareness starts to decline. 

What are the Symptoms of Dog Anxiety?

If you suspect your dog has anxiety, here are several important symptoms to keep an eye out for:

  • Compulsive behavior
  • Pacing
  • Restlessness
  • Excessive Barking
  • Depression
  • Drooling
  • Aggression
  • Panting
  • Urinating or defecating in the house
  • Destructive behavior

While some of these may be the result of occasional anxiety-causing events, recurrent symptoms should not be ignored. Especially aggression, which can lead to your dog injuring you, themselves or another person. In particular, dog bite injuries not only lead to serious physical injuries, …” but can also cause severe emotional trauma,” according to Omaha dog bite attorney, James W. Knowles Jr.

After reviewing the symptoms, having your dog examined and officially being diagnosed as having dog anxiety, it’s important to come up with a plan to treat their anxiety. 

How to Treat a Dog With Anxiety

There are 2 common ways to deal with dog anxiety, including behavior medication techniques and medication. The goal of techniques is to decrease the emotional or aggressive reaction to a specific stimulus. 

Desensitization, one of the more common techniques, is the repeated, controlled exposure to the stimulus that usually causes a fearful or anxious response. 

Another method called “counter-conditioning” is known as training the dog to replace the fearful or anxiety-induced behavior with positive behavior.

Another option is medication, which will require occasional tests to ensure your dog is processing and eliminating the medications appropriately. 

While working with your dog on his or her anxiety can be time-consuming and stressful, it’s also extremely rewarding for your dog and their quality of life. If you have any questions about your dog’s anxiety or detect any symptoms, contact your veterinarian to learn more about what you can do to help.

10 “Healthy” Foods That Can Make Your Dog Sick

In many homes, dogs are not only man’s best friend, but they’re also a part of the family. According to the 2017-2018 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, roughly 68% of households in the United States own a pet, with dogs being one of the most common. As fun and rewarding as owning a dog can be, it’s very important to remember that they also need special care and attention in many aspects of their lives.

A dog chewing up one of your favorite shoes is frustrating, but a dog digging around in your pantry or garbage could be extremely dangerous. Most simple ingredients that you’d use to season or garnish a meal can actually cause a range of mild to severe reactions in your pet. While there are many delicious human foods that are beneficial for dogs to snack on, there are also just as many to stay far away from. Here are 10 “healthy” treats you should avoid feeding to your dog:

Mushrooms

The mushrooms that are found in the grocery store are safe for human consumption but that doesn’t mean it’s also safe for your dog. Certain types, especially the wild variety, can cause a slow poisoning in animals that both you and your dog are unaware of.

Onions

While onions can be a great way to add extra flavor to your favorite meal, they can cause serious internal problems for your pet. One of the ingredients in onions, thiosulphate, can destroy red blood cells and cause anemia in dogs.

Grapes

These sweet treats may be the perfect size for a small snack but they can cause serious kidney problems for your dog. It’s important to keep grapes out of reach, as just a small amount can lead to kidney failure and death.

Macadamia nuts

Whether served whole or mixed into a cookie, macadamia nuts are not dog-friendly in any form. In addition to being high in fat and salt, these nuts are especially dangerous due to their potential to cause life-threatening tremors.

Garlic

This common flavorful addition causes the same problems in dogs as an onion would. It is especially potent in thiosulphate and can severely damage your pets red blood cells.

Raw fish

Raw fish can be a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids for humans but certain raw varieties, such as salmon and trout, can negatively impact the health of your furry friend. Uncooked salmon can contain parasites that have been proven to be fatal to dogs. If you’re planning a special fish dinner for your pet, be sure to cook it at a high temperature before serving.

Fruit with pits

Cherries, peaches, and plums should be kept far away from dogs of all sizes. The pits can not only cause your pet to choke, but this part of the fruit contains poisonous cyanide.

Avocados

Keep the avocado toast to yourself! Avocados contain high levels of persin, which can be highly toxic in large quantities.

Cooked bones

Nibbling on bones is one of a dog’s favorite things to do. Unfortunately, cooked bones are not the best option to give to your pet. During the cooking process, most of the moisture is lost, leaving it brittle and dry. These dry edges can result in splinters that can damage their teeth and even puncture their digestive tract.

Chocolate

It doesn’t matter if it’s dark chocolate or milk chocolate, all types are off limits. Chocolate toxicity can cause vomiting, seizures and even death due to the ingredient theobromine, which is poisonous to pets.

Owning a dog not only brings a lot of happiness but also a great amount of responsibility as well. Be sure to take extra steps to ensure their safety when it comes to toxic foods they can easily ingest. For example, regularly clear the yard of any wild mushrooms that may be growing or keep food stored on high surfaces that are well out of reach. Remember, your dog is much more than just an animal, they’re family!