Posted in About Me and What I do, Traveling

Traveling by car with your dog

Hello everyone, I apologize it has been so long since I have posted. My husband (a police officer) got hit by a car (felon trying to get out of a ticket) so I have been taking care of him for the last 2 weeks.

Which brings me to todays topic. Traveling with your dog in a car. Here are tips I have learned in my years of driving long distance with a dog in the car, only to be improved upon this last few weeks.

For shorter trips like 6 hours or less here is what you need:

  • Pet restraint – Weather it is a crate, a seatbelt buckling harness, or a barrier so your pet stay in the portion of the car you want them in.
  • Carpet/seat protector – weather it is just a sheet, or tarp or a made for dogs seat protector this will help contain the pet hair, dirt from paws or their coat, and for that occasional upset stomach puddle from the bouncing of the road.
  • Water bottle – an easy bottle for your pup to drink out of.
  • Poop bags – poop picker upper bags for those rest stops when they just have to go. You don’t want to be that person that everyone hates because their dog poops and then someone else steps in it.
  • First aid kit – I don’t carry a first aid kit but better safe then sorry. Dog seem to get into everything when we turn our back for half a second and who know what could happen.
  • Wipes – weather it is baby wipes, Lysol, or wet ones its nice to have them on hand! Traveling with dogs there is always a mess to clean up somewhere and it is better to clean them up fast then letting them sit there and soak into the seat.
  • Toys – something to keep your pup busy when they are not asleep. If you pup has that special blanket or toy that keeps them calm don’t forget that either. The more calm your pet is the better.
  • Treat – I give my pups something when we get where we are going, weather it is a pigs ear or a bacon strip I like to give them something special when we get where we are going. Most of the time we are going to our second house and seeing family and the other dogs is enough of a treat for my dogs but when we are going to a hotel I give them a treat.

 

 

For longer trips 7 hours or more:

  • Pet restraint – Weather it is a crate, a seatbelt buckling harness, or a barrier so your pet stay in the portion of the car you want them in.
  • Carpet/seat protector – weather it is just a sheet, or tarp or a made for dogs seat protector this will help contain the pet hair, dirt from paws or their coat, and for that occasional upset stomach from the bouncing of the road.
  • Water bottle – an easy bottle for your pup to drink out of.
  • Poop bags – poop picker upper bags for those rest stops when they just have to go. You don’t want to be that person that everyone hates because their dog poops and then someone else steps in it.
  • First aid kit – I don’t carry a first aid kit but it is not a bad idea. Dog seem to get into everything when we turn our back for half a second and who know what could happen.
  • Wipes – weather it is baby wipes, or wet ones its nice to have them on hand! Traveling with dogs there is always a mess to clean up somewhere and it is better to clean them up fast then letting them sit there and soak into the seat.
  • Food – on a normal short trip I don’t feed my dogs until we get where we are going to avoid upset stomach but if your going on a longer trip it is best to feed a small handful of food every hour or so. Not much food but enough to keep them content.
  • Toys – something to keep your pup busy when they are not asleep. If you pup has that special blanket or toy that keeps them calm don’t forget that either. The more calm your pet is the better.
  • Treat – I give my pups something when we get where we are going, weather it is a pigs ear or a bacon strip I like to give them something special when we get where we are going. Most of the time we are going to our second house and seeing family and the other dogs is enough of a treat for my dogs but when we are going to a hotel I give them a treat.

Now I know what you are thinking… that’s a lot of stuff just for the dogs. Where am I going to put all of that? and how am I going to ensure my dogs don’t get to the treats or food while I am driving. Seat Back Organizers, and Car Organizing Baskets, are life savers when it comes to this. I put the treats up front with me in my cooler snack bag so I know they aren’t getting into them. I put their food in with the luggage so they can’t get into that either. After a bag of treats “go missing” you figure out very quick that the dogs are smarter than you and that “hiding” them is not enough.

 

Now some people call me mean because for a short trip I do not feed my dogs in the morning. and I don’t feed them until we get where we are going. Any trip over 8 hours (which never happens) I give them bits of food through out the day. Now my dog are open feed at home which means the food is down 24/7 and I fill it up when it is empty. I know my dogs don’t eat much in the morning anyways so I am not worried about them “missing” that feeding. As soon as we get where we are going I put out there food and they don’t normally touch it until about 7 o’clock. With that being said most of my trips are 3-4 hours long, so I don’t give them water either until we get where we are going.

Before leaving the house: We typically leave the house around 10 o’clock when we go on a trip. I pack most everything the day before, clean the house, do laundry and everything else. I then make a list for the morning stuff. (razor, hair brush, toothbrush, etc.) I put the dog food in a Travel dog food container. I also grab their leashes and collars, and their electric training collars, their extra food bowls and I have them sitting on top of the washer to grab while walking out the door the next day. As I am packing the car/truck the morning of leaving I have the dogs out of the house and running around for two reasons, to get some energy out so they will sleep for a bit and so they can go to the bathroom. I put the sheet over the back seat and have their leashes and collar close to the door for when we stop to go potty. (Command hooks work great!! attach the hook just inside the door and hang the lease and collar there for easy access. This way they don’t wander under the seat and you know where they are.)

Also before I leave I use dog shampoo wipes or waterless shampoo and wipe down the dog really quick. These little wipes will clean your pup up a bit, remove that weird dog smell and replace it with a fresh smell of your choice. This will help keep your vehicle smelling much less like dog.

 

Well I hope you all enjoyed this post and if you have anything else to add please add them in the comments. If you have any questions feel free to email me at germanshepherddogs@doglover.com

 

Posted in About Me and What I do, Health, Seasonal, Traveling

In Case of Emergency

We all hate to think that something bad could happen to us or our family, but we all know the harsh reality that bad things happen all the time.

What are you going to do if your house catches on fire when you are not home. Does the fire department know you have dogs, or cats, or snakes?? Most likely not. Below is a picture you should be able to save and print for your self.

Write on it, laminate it or put it in a plastic sleeve and post on your front door or in your front window. Make sure to update it with any animal changes.

I take a different piece of paper and write the dogs names, any allergies, my phone number, my name, and any other important information on it and attach it to the back of this picture and put it in my front window. At the bottom of the page I write more info on back please remove and keep with dogs. This will help ensure my dogs don’t get something they are allergic to.

Even if you think something will never happen to your house for this to be needed, its always better safe than sorry.

 

ice-pets

 

If you have any questions or would like me to email you the picture please email me at Germanshepherddogs@doglover.com

Posted in Health, Traveling

Kennel Cough

Ok, enough creepy crawler worms for now. Lets talk about something that is not as serious as most of those worms. Here is all the information that I have found on Kennel Cough, I will add more as I find it.

This Holiday season if you are not traveling with your pet and you are leaving them at a kennel it would be a great idea to use some of these preventative measures to help protect your pup from getting Kennel Cough.

If your dog is hacking away or constantly making noises that make it sound like he’s chocking or trying to cough something up (you know like your husband does), he may have a case of Kennel Cough, or canine infectious tracheobronchitis. Although kennel cough can sound terrible, most of the time it is not a serious condition, and most dogs will recover without treatment.

Just as human colds may be caused by many different viruses, kennel cough itself can have multiple causes. One of the most common culprits is a bacterium called Bordetella bronchiseptica m– which is why kennel cough is often called Bordetella. Most dogs that become infected with Bordetella are infected with a virus at the same time. These viruses, which are known to make dogs more susceptible to contracting Bordetella infection, include canine adenovirus, canine distemper virus, canine herpes virus, parainfluenza virus and canine reovirus.

Dogs “catch” kennel cough when they inhale bacteria or virus particles into their respiratory tract (just like we do). This tract is normally lined with a coating of mucus that traps infectious particles (just like our nose), but there are a number of factors that can weaken this protection and make dogs prone to kennel cough infection, which results in inflammation of the larynx (voice box) and trachea (windpipe). (Sound familiar?? it is literally a cold in dogs; just like with us humans, sometimes we can get over a cold without medicine and sometimes we can’t).

Dogs can “catch” kennel cough from the following factors (just like we can):

  • Exposure to crowded and/or poorly ventilated conditions, such as are found in many kennels and shelters
  • Cold temperatures
  • Exposure to dust or cigarette smoke
  • Travel-induced stress

Ok enough chit-chatting here is what you really came here to find out. Symptoms, Prevention and Treatment.

Symptoms of Kennel Cough

The classic symptom of kennel cough is a persistent, forceful cough. It often sounds like a goose honk. This is distinct from a cough-like sound made by some dogs, especially little ones, which is called a reverse sneeze. Reverse sneezes can be normal in certain dogs and breeds, and usually only indicates the presence of post-nasal drip or a slight irritation of the throat.

Some dogs with kennel cough may show other symptoms of illness, including sneezing, a runny nose, or eye discharge (eye boogers).

If your dog has kennel cough, he probably will not lose his appetite or have a decreased energy level.

Treating and Preventing Kennel Cough

Kennel cough is contagious. If you think your dog might have the condition, you should keep him away from other animals and contact your veterinarian.

Treating and Preventing Kennel Cough continued…

Although most cases of kennel cough will resolve without treatment, medications may speed recovery or minimize symptoms during the course of infection.  These include antibiotics that target Bordetella bacteria and cough medicines.

You may also find that keeping your dog in a well-humidified area and using a harness instead of a collar, especially for dogs that strain against a leash, will minimize the coughing.

Most dogs with kennel cough recover completely within three weeks, though it can take up to six weeks in older dogs or those with other medical conditions. Because serious, ongoing kennel cough infection can lead to pneumonia, be sure to follow up with your veterinarian if your dog doesn’t improve within the expected amount of time. Also, if your dog at any time has symptoms of rapid breathing, not eating, or listlessness, contact your vet right away, as these could be signs of more serious conditions.

There are three forms of vaccine for kennel cough: one that is injected, one that is delivered as a nasal mist, and one that can be given by mouth. Although these vaccines may help, they do not guarantee protection against kennel cough or infectious tracheobronchitis because it can be caused by so many different kinds of bacteria and viruses. Also, it is important to realize that neither form of the kennel cough vaccination will treat active infections.

As you know from reading my other posts I normally have links to amazon.com for what I like to use for the topic we are talking about. Here is an entire list of great medicines to help treat and to help prevent kennel cough. I personally like the HomeoPet brand because it is all natural but so are some of the others in this list. I hope this helps you all!!

Well I know that is a lot of reading but I hope you learned something!! As always if you ever have any questions feel free to email me at Germanshepherddogs@doglover.com

Posted in Traveling

Traveling without your pets

If you are traveling anywhere and you are not taking your pet where will they be?? Are you taking them to a boarding facility? Are they staying with a pet sitter? Are they staying at home with someone checking in on them?

Traveling without your pets can be very emotional and hard for both us as fur-parents and our pets. Any time I go on a day trip for an appointment or other adventure that takes more than a 3-4 hours I make sure someone has my house key to let the babies out of their crates, to run around, and get some attention. Now the people that I trust with my dogs is a long list of like 2 people, and I have video cameras at my house so I can check on them anytime I want. With that being said I still stress out, are they gonna see something that they want to go after and he won’t be able to call them back, are they gonna get in a fight with the neighbors dog, what if, what if, what if….. The man I trust with my dogs is always at my house, he eats dinner with us most nights, he is a man I trust and my dogs trust. He knows their routine, he knows how to feed them, he knows when to feed them, he knows of any changes to their routine, he knows that they will try to run up to the Highway if you turn your back for a second,  basically he is my superman!! He has saved me more times than I can count.

Everything above is very important. If you are leaving your dogs with someone have a schedule written out, write out exactly how to feed them, do they get a special water because water in your area is not good, everything that they need to know. Especially if the dogs have been going to a certain area when you let them out that they need to be careful of. Also your dogs need to trust them!!! They need to know that he/she is in charge when you leave. A great way to test this is put the dogs away like you would if you were leaving for a trip, get in the car, and go down the road, then have your friend come and let the dogs out and play, then if they can put them away (will you dog go into their crate for this other person). Then your friend leaves, stops and talks to you on the way down the road, then you go back to the house and let them out again. Did everything go smoothly? Is there anywhere they can get better? Did they go back in their crates for this other person? YES, awesome things should go smoothly when you are gone. NO, what ever didn’t go smoothly work on it, was it feeding? reteach the person how to do it. Was it the crate? stand with your friend and let them tell your dogs to get in their crates, this will show your dogs that you agree with his/her command and that they should do as they say. It trail and error until everything goes smoothly and you feel comfortable.

Are you leaving your dog at a boarding center? have you been to that center before? Do you trust them? Before picking a boarding center for your babies go check them out, take a tour and meet some of the staff, then check them out on google or Facebook! Most people write about their experiences with these places and it might help you make a decision about that center.

If you are leaving your pet at a boarding center, make sure they have a schedule of your dog, and more than enough food for them. Also make sure you know exactly what you dropped off at the center with your dog and make sure you get it all back.

Don’t do anything you are not comfortable with! If you don’t like that boarding center find a different one. You get to be picky so find the one that you are happy and comfortable with.

 

If you have any other questions or comments please feel free to email me at germanshepherddogs@doglover.com

Posted in About Me and What I do, Traveling

Traveling with Pets

Tis the season of traveling!!!

Now that Halloween is past us and Thanksgiving and Christmas are in the near future you may be traveling to see family or friends. Are you taking your pets? Yes, well do you know how much extra it is to fly with the or what hotel will allow pets??

Below is an image that should help you have a better idea on what to expect. Many hotels will allow service or K9 police animals with no extra charge but you do have to let them know ahead of time.

If flying with your pets make sure to call the airline ahead of time and confirm there is no extra paperwork or vaccines that they need for the dog. Also ask how they want the pet crated (type of crate, size, water or food). Normally when flying a pet in a crate they must be able to stand up without touching the roof of the crate and have enough room to stand comfortably. If yo ever have any questions or concerns about flying your animal call the airline and ask!

 

traveling-with-dogs

Me and my family never fly we drive everywhere and both of my dogs are Police K9’s so we don’t have much problems with hotels. We stay at the Holiday Inn Express because we have the HIG rewards program. When we travel and have to stay in a Hotel I always bring their crates and their Indestructibone. When I leave the room for any reason I leave the TV on and I put them in their crates. Even though the Hotel is allowing them to stay there I don’t want to pay for any damages they could cause being alone in a strange room.

I hope this helps so of yall looking to travel with your pet.

Safe Travels and have a Happy Holiday Season!!