Saturday, December 29, 2007

Yes, Folks, Poodle History Lesson

By Rick London

When I first started Londons Times Cartoons in 1997, I founded it with the idea of dogs in mind. Poodles were my favorite, though I'd never owned one. I just have an affection for poodles though I knew very little about their history. I decided after launching my cartoon gift store, I would add as many of my poodle cartoon products as the page would allow. And then I studied the history of the poodle and got some surprises. You might too.

Nobody really knows the origin of the poodle though we do know it was in Germany, not France. The Germans called them, and still do, pudles, which means to "splash in water". Poodles were bred to be hunting dogs and remain proficient hunters, though most Americans prefer other breeds for this sport. The poodle was first standardized as a breed in France, hence the French poodle. Later came the regular poodle and even much later the miniature and toy breeds. The AKC began registering poodles in 1886.

In France, Poodles have been used for a variety of purposes and still are. The Caniche for duck hunting, the Petti Barbet (a toy size) to entertain royalty, and the Truffle dog to search for that flavorful food (pigs, for the most part have taken their place in search of truffles).

The UK received the poodle in 1874. For 36 years they were all shown together and in 1910, changes were made to the way they were shown; put in different classes according to size and appearance.

The foundations that were developed in England became the cornerstones of the breed in the United States. Precisely when the Poodle was imported to the United States is not known. The American Kennel Club registered its first Poodle in 1886. The Poodle Club of America was originally founded in 1896. Shortly after its establishment it was disbanded, and then reorganized in 1931. The P.C.A. used the Standard and Rules of the Burley Poodle Club of England as its base for establishing the Standard in the U.S. The same Standard now applies to all three sizes of Poodle, the only difference is in the height measurements for each size. The Standard and Miniature Poodle are shown in the Non Sporting Group of the A.K.C., and the Toy Poodle is shown in the Toy Group. The F.C.I. (Federation Cynologique Internationale) recognizes four sizes: the Standard, Miniature, Dwarf and Toy.

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Friday, December 28, 2007

Do You Know What You Should About Training For Aggressive Dogs?

By Missy Matheson

There is absolutely nothing more adorable than a new puppy, with its dancing eyes, little wagging tail and milky breath. You can't help but fall in love with the little wriggling fur ball as it nuzzles your neck and slurps your face with its little wet tongue, lavishing you with unconditional love. The thought that you should start learning about training for aggressive dogs never crosses your mind, because you can't imagine that this little four-legged angel could ever be anything other than sweet and gentle.

Unfortunately, many puppies do grow up to be aggressive dogs. Many people are under the impression that aggression is the result abuse and neglect. While many dogs are indeed aggressive because of shameful mistreatment, neglect and abuse are not always to blame for aggression. In fact, many aggressive dogs have owners that love them and treat them extremely well. So why do some dogs with kind, loving owners turn into aggressive dogs?

The problem is simple, and unfortunately, extremely common. Dogs are animals with very strong instincts. Some of these instincts, like their sense of loyalty to their humans, endear them to us and have made them "man's best friend." But dogs have other instincts that while completely normal, can develop into aggressive behavior when felt too keenly. By failing to recognize that certain instincts in their dog are kicking into overdrive, owners are failing to recognize that their dog is actually displaying early signs of aggression.

Recognizing these early signs is the key to understanding how to treat aggressive dog behavior. The only way that training for aggressive dogs can be successful is if the underlying causes of aggression are identified and understood.

So, in order to learn how to help an aggressive dog, you must first learn to recognize the warning signs of certain instincts that are becoming problematic, and understand what you must do to help curb these instincts. The most common warning signs to watch for are excessive displays of dominance, fear and territorialism.

Fear can bring out the natural instinct of a dog to protect itself. Usually you will know when your dog feels scared. Its first response could be to put its tail between its legs, flatten its ears back against its head, and it may either look away or run. But when it feels like it has no other way out, it may lash out by growling, snarling, baring its teeth and eventually biting. Proper training for aggressive dogs will teach them to overcome their inappropriate reactions to fear.

Dogs are pack animals and every pack must have a leader, or alpha dog. Some dogs are naturally alpha dogs, and they attempt to establish themselves as such by dominating everyone and everything around them. While this instinct is perfectly acceptable in the wild, it can quickly become a dangerous problem in a domestic setting, particularly in homes with small children. It is imperative that dogs understand their place in the "pack" and recognize that their owner is the alpha dog. Training for aggressive dogs can help curb your dog's dominant behavior and teach you how to assert yourself as top dog.

While it can sometimes be annoying to have your dog bark at every living creature that comes within 10 feet of your door, it is perfectly normal dog behavior. It is a simple fact that dogs are territorial and feel instinctively bound to protect their homes and their families. But if your dog's "protectiveness" is scaring your guests and neighbors, then you need to deal with it as soon as possible by learning how to treat aggressive dog behavior.

There is no such thing as a bad dog, only bad owners. Dogs are just like children in that they need love, patience and understanding. They also need proper discipline, and owners that can recognize warning signs of aggression and provide them with training for aggressive dogs when needed. So take the time to learn how to help an aggressive dog so that you can help your dog overcome any aggression problems and become a sweet, friendly dog.

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

How To Find The Best Dalmatian Breeders

By Ben Shaw

Dalmatians have an easily recognizable appearance and are fabulous as house pets. Breeders hundreds of years ago have been trying to incorporate great characteristics like strength, speed, and health into the Dalmatian breed. If you're planning to go with Dalmatian breeders, take a deep breath and do a little bit of research.

How To Find Dalmatian Breeders

The steps are simple in finding a dog breeder in general. Ask for referrals from a veterinarian, local breed club, dog show coordinator, or friend. Your first thought may be to stop by a pet store. However, good dog breeders often do not sell their dogs through a pet store. The best way to find good Dalmatian breeders is to visit the place where Dalmatians are born and raised. Of course, you may start searching online and then visit your preferred breeder in person.

Allow Dalmatian Breeders To Question You

If you've already listed down the best Dalmatian breeders, visit them one by one and do lots of observation. Will your potential Dalmatian be healthy and will you be happy with it for many years to come? And most importantly, make sure the breeder will be a sincere one. Dalmatian breeders should be more caring for their dogs and not sell them purely for money.

Good Dalmatian breeders will often ask you a million questions. The main reason for this is that they want to make sure if you'll be able to take care of their dog accordingly. You may be asked how long you work in a day, who else is living with you, if you often have guests that come over, how much you're willing to spend and how large your backyard is. These inquiries might sound intrusive, but they are actually good signs that you're speaking with a responsible breeder!

Questions to ask Dalmatian Breeders

Now that you've decided on the top breeder around, ask questions yourself. Think about guarantees, certain considerations, and if the breeder joins other organizations. Top Dalmatian breeders usually offer lifetime guarantees for your new dog. Furthermore, they also are able to care for your dog in any situation that you are no longer able to. And if he or she joins some organization like animal shelters, that is a plus.

Analyze Your Own Capabilities

Of course, you also need to consider how you're going to care for your new Dalmatian. Aside from your own preference in a dog, know what Dalmatians were bred for in the first place. They are very energetic, playful and friendly dogs.

Because of these characteristics, Dalmatians are good with kids and also require lots of exercise and a large space. However, they can be stubborn, so be ready to spend time training them. Other things to consider are allergies as Dalmatians shed frequently. Dalmatian breeders often have the best Dalmatians, however, Dalmatians can have genetic health concerns including deafness and kidney and bladder stones.

If it's your plan to join dog shows or simply want a healthy Dalmatian, top Dalmatian breeders are willing to discuss with you the typical show characteristics of Dalmatians. You can type Dalmatian show characteristics online for research. Don't forget that good Dalmatian breeders focus more on the health and happiness of their dogs rather than money.

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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Is The Persian Cat For You?

By Paulina Jenkins

Very often the Persian cat is considered to be the best looking, friendly and docile cat breed. It is also believed to be one of the world's oldest cat breeds. Generally it is accepted that the Persian cat has its origin in Persia. This region is the Iranian plateau between the Hindukush Mountains and Mesopotamia. Hence the Persian cat was named. Owning a Persian cat is equivalent to possessing a great work of art.

The Persian cat has a flowing thick coat of long hairs. You can find Persians in almost any color. The color can be solid with pointed, tortoiseshell, blue, and tabby markings. It has a short neck and a massive round head. They have big round expressive eyes that are wide-set. The ears are rounded and small and the nose is broad and short.

Persian cats have short, thick legs in proportion to the rest of their bodies. Their feet are round, and their bodies short and broad. Tails are bushy, and not long in relation to the body. Generally, a Persian will weigh between eight and fifteen pounds. These cats live between fifteen and twenty years in most cases, provided they receive proper care. Their voices have been called beautiful and melodious.

The Persian is very adaptable and can be a single owner pet or a family pet. Persians are not good jumpers because they only have short legs. They are good at interacting with their humans and very responsive to the owners' emotions. Some of them can be aloof and quiet households are more preferable. Persians are people orientated and love any kind of attention from their humans.

It is important to care for a Persian cat properly, like any other pet. Since Persians tend to have short muzzles, they can suffer from genetic problems, including constriction of the nostrils, tear duct overflow, dental malocclusion, and a condition called cherry eye. Other problems peculiar to Persians include polycystic kidney disease, seborrhea oleosa, and entropion.

If you get a Persian, you will enjoy interacting with this intelligent, friendly cat. However, you will also need to work to maintain your pet properly. Persians can suffer from tear staining, and may need to have their faces washed. Their teeth should be brushed, and their coats cared for regularly. Since Persians have such long hair and can get tangles easily, you should brush your cat once a day for ten minutes. During months when the cat is shedding you should brush even more often.

Persian cats should have regular vaccinations. This means keeping their rabies and other shots up to date. Make sure to take your feline in for regular check ups to keep your pet happy and healthy. Remember that some plants are toxic to cats, including many house plants. Consult your vet for plants you should keep your Persian away from. Look for commercial cat foods that contain a high quantity of protein, and avoid those that contain a large number of grains or fillers.

You can choose to have your Persian groomed regularly by a professional. If you choose to do the grooming yourself, make sure you have the right tools. Grooming supplies can be obtained from all pet stores. These should include towels, mild shampoo, a good pet brush, nail clipper and eye ointment.

Before you decide to owing a Persian cat you must be aware it is a lot of work involved. If you are unable to give your Persian cat the daily required grooming then the Persian is not for you. The veterinary costs for a Persian are expensive and necessary. Do not get a Persian if you cannot afford the expenses. For people who can give the attention and love the Persian cat will become your best friend and loyal companion for life.

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Tips For Potty Training A Puppy

By Puppy Tips

If you're the proud new owner of a puppy, the excitement you are feeling is incredible. You imagine all of the good times you're going to have with your new pet. Then reality strikes and you realize that your new best friend is really messing up your home because it's not potty trained yet. As much as you wish your new puppy would obey your commands, you quickly realize that you don't actually know how to potty train a puppy.

As you know, potty training a puppy is vital if you wish to maintain a clean home. Unfortunately, different breeds are harder to train than others so don't be upset if your puppy is not responding immediately to the training. If you haven't purchased your new puppy yet, then you may want to ask the breeder or pet shop assistant about the breed and how quickly they can be potty trained. If you have your heart set on a particular breed don't be surprised if it takes a little longer to be potty trained.

The younger the puppy, the more you have to have patience. Obviously, new born puppies have minimal control over their bodily functions so when the time is upon them, they'll end up going as opposed to holding it for any length of time. The main thing you should avoid with these new born pups is to not get angry because they just can't help it at this age.

Once your puppy is is finished eating, you should definitely take it outside or to the area you have set up inside your home. This is the best time because you have to start developing a routine that it will recognize. To help with this routine, make sure you take it outside or to its area first thing in the morning as well as just before be time.

In order to potty train a puppy, you should reward it with good praise and possibly a treat after it has successfully accomplished the task in the correct area. In doing so, the puppy understands that this was a good thing to do and it pleases you so it will want to keep doing it.

When you go to feed your puppy, make sure you stick with dry food. Make sure that you feed your puppy at the same time each day so it goes potty at the same time each day or evening. Changing it's feeding times will not allow it to get into this routine that's so vital when potty training a puppy.

Young puppies need a lot of water. Make sure it has it's water container filled at all times but take it away about 2 hours before bed time. This way it won't need to be taken out in the middle of the night.

Lastly, try to keep the puppies area clean at all times. A dirty area may discourage your puppy not allowing it get used to the area. You don't want to give it any excuses.

Hopefully, you've found these tips helpful. Just remember, when potty training a puppy, patience is critical. If you can make it through these early, frustrating times there will be many great years to come.

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Pamper Your Pooch With A Kennel Shade Cover

By Shea Gyngell

Sometimes, life is for the dogs. Especially on those blistering hot summer days. That's the time that you need to pamper your best friend with a cool and comfortable kennel shade cover.

As a pet owner, you are morally and legally obligate to provide the very best care for your dog. This high quality of life includes time spent inside, and outside, the home. If you have a dog that spends time in an outdoor kennel, you must provide adequate shade from the hot summer sun with a kennel cover.

It's easy to find and install a dog kennel shade cover, and it doesn't have to be expensive. You can find a basic dog kennel shade cover to provide the degree of protection your pet needs, at a price you can afford.

Protect every kennel on your property with a proper shade cover. These will protect your pets, keeping them cool in summer and providing necessary shelter when the weather turns foul. Severe weather, heavy winds and extended periods of rain and snow can be very harmful and terrifying to your dog. It's essential that you find the right dog kennel shade cover to keep your pet safe and healthy, in all types of weather.

The Best for Your Best Friend

Some pet owners ask, "Why buy a shade cover, when I can throw a tarp over the dog kennel?" Of course, this is not the best method of protecting your pet. A tarp might keep the sun out, but the material cannot withstand everything nature has to offer. Over time, tarps will break down and tear, allowing the driving rain and snow to harm your pet. Tarps cannot deflect the sunlight, and may even cause an increase in the temperature of the kennel area.

Rather than using a plain tarp, spend a few extra bucks to invest in a proper dog kennel shade cover. These covers are secured to the kennel structure and slanted at an angle. The angled cover is your assurance that all rainwater, snow and melting ice will fall directly to the ground, rather than pooling on top. This, in turn, prevents the risk of flood or collapse.

Keep a Tight Leash on Your Cover

After installing the kennel cover, go back to double-check that it's properly installed and securely tightened, before you put your dog in the kennel. The cover could blow away during high winds, leaving your dog exposed to the elements and prone to injury from heavy rain, sleet or snow.

Size Up the Situation

You can find dog kennel shade covers in a variety of sizes, and most can be added to any existing kennels already set up in your yard. Take accurate measurements of your kennel and purchase a cover that fits properly. Don't go to the time and trouble of installing a cover that's too large or too small. If you haven't built a kennel yet, look for a complete setup that includes the cover in the kennel package. Otherwise, you'll pay extra for the cover later on.

There are days when it rains cats and dogs, and your pet needs a place to stay warm and comfortable. It's even more important to keep your pet safe. It only takes a little time and money to install a dog kennel shade cover, but it's certainly worth it. There's nothing too good for your best friend.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Dog Breeds That Are Most Suitable For Community Jobs And Why.

By Amy Nutt

As most people know, dogs are not only loving pets and companions. Many dogs also serve important functions in the community as well. Dogs help the police and military search for bombs, drugs and people. Dogs help blind people make their way through the world. Dogs work on farms and pastures and serve their masters as tough and militant guards and even soldiers. This article will discuss which breeds thrive in different tasks and why.

The organization Guide Dogs of America relies on three pure breeds to use as guide dogs for the blind. The majority of the guide dogs are Labrador Retrievers, followed by Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds. These breeds are chosen based on three behavioral characteristics: willingness, health and temperament. These dogs possess the intelligence and patience to assist their owners in the best way possible. They are robust, fit and well-suited to the task. They are also loyal and love people, which helps them stay focused in crowded situations. All three of these breeds also exhibit a variety of sizes, making them easier to pair with different owners.

The top three guard dog breeds are the Bullmastiff, Doberman and the Rottweiler. Bullmastiffs, which are 40% Bulldog and 60% Mastiff are loyal, courageous and very strong. These dogs have an inherent protective instinct and will bite or wrestle intruders to the ground. Dobermans are exceptionally intelligent dogs that vary in temperament, but generally they will not hesitate to attack if they feel their family is in danger. Rottweilers are also intelligent dogs, considered ninth most intelligent breed in the world. Rottweilers are calm and loving with their families, but also fiercely protective. They are very strong, have great stamina and are resistant to pain.

Depending on the task, many different breeds are used for police work. However, the most common police dog is the German Shepherd. The key attributes for an effective police dog are intelligence, strength, aggression and sense of smell. Most police German Shepherds are males, left unneutered to maintain their natural aggression and strength. German shepherds also possess a highly acute sense of smell and are very intelligent and trainable, making them excellent bomb and drug sniffing dogs as well as search and rescue dogs.

There are over a dozen common and well-qualified herding breeds, but the most well-known and best regarded of those breeds is the Border Collie. Border Collies are widely considered to be the smartest dogs in the world and because of this, dog obedience training of the breed is easy. With their high intelligence, the Border Collies demand difficult tasks. They are also highly agile and fast dogs, and their natural herding instinct makes them perfect farm dogs. Border Collies are also renowned for their performance in athletic competitions, and their powerful sense of smell makes them excellent search and rescue dogs.

As you can see, dogs are not just the loving, happy pets we often consider them to be. The breeds mentioned above are only a few of many types of dogs humans have bred throughout history to serve them. Though any of the breeds will make excellent pets, remember the purpose they were created to serve. Knowing what your dogs' inherent instincts and abilities are will make you a better, more informed dog owner.

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