When good dogs get sick

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So, Vance had a bit of a stomach upset this weekend (ate something he shouldn’t have–he’s such a Lab!) and that got me thinking about how others handle when their dogs are sick.

We don’t rush Vance to the vet just because he’s thrown up (especially if we know what he’s been into and that it’s not dangerous like in this case), but he’s a big dog and I think I’d feel differently if he were small (much like it’s different when your kids get sick as babies versus when they’re in elementary school). Because he’s big, that means it takes a bit longer for him to get dehydrated or to suffer other side effects from being sick.

We have hard wood floors throughout the house (with tile in the kitchen), so it’s not as big a deal if someone gets sick–it’s easier to clean up–but we still keep Vance confined when he’s not feeling well. That’s mostly just to keep him from racing crazily through the house and making himself sicker, but if we had carpets, that would likely factor in as well.

I’d love to know how you approach when your dog gets sick–do you head to the vet straightaway? Do you tap certain at home medications and treatments? (Here, we sometimes put a few drops of a dog-safe, appropriate essential oil in Vance’s water.) Do you keep your dog in their crate, or spend extra time giving them cuddles? How do you help your good dog feel better?

Dog food on Amazon Subscribe and Save

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If you buy your dog food online (we do!), you already know about the benefits–not having to make a stop at the pet store, not having to lug the 20+ lb bag into the cart, and then from the cart to the car, not having to stand in the aisle comparing ingredients when you need to change brands, and not arriving at the store only to find they’re out of stock of your dog’s regular food.

But, there’s one big drawback of buying dog food online–the shipping! Since Amazon offers free shipping, though, if they carry the dog food you typically buy, you may find theirs is a much better deal than other online pet supply stores.

Buy dog food online And, what’s more, Amazon has recently started offering several dog food brands with Subscribe and Save available. Not only does that mean you don’t have to remember to buy dog food before you run out, because it gets shipped to you on the schedule that works for you, but it also means you can save 15% off the Amazon price. Pretty cool, right?

If you’ve been looking for a new, healthy dog food for your best friend, check out Amazon’s selection of dog food that’s eligible for Subscribe & Save.

Have you bought your dog’s food from Amazon yet? What did you like best about it?

How to stop a dog fight

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If you have a two-dog (or more-dog) household, chances are, they get into fights from time to time. Fights about who gets to come in the house first, or who gets to eat first, fights about who gets to snuggle nearest you on the floor… Fights that, to us humans, seem pretty darn silly!

But, when you look at it as sibling rivalry, it makes a bit more sense–if you have any brothers or sisters, I bet you got into weird territorial spats for no good reason from time to time (I know I did!).

The most common cause of dog fights is when your dogs are unclear about the boundaries. So, it’s important that you make a firm decision about who the alpha dog will be and treat that dog as the alpha. That dog should be petted first, given a treat first, leashed first, and fed first. Always. It may seem “unfair” to us people, but to dogs, anything else is confusing and can lead to snarls and snaps.

Next, make sure you’re consistent with the rules. If the dogs aren’t allowed on the furniture, never let them on the furniture. If they’re supposed to sleep in their crates, always put them in their crates for bed. Confused dogs are more likely to get into fights.

Finally, make sure each dog has his or her own things–a separate food bowl, a separate leash, a separate sleeping area (or crate, or both), separate Kongs. Some sharing can go on, certainly, but of the most important things, each dog needs his or her own.

If you have a multidog household, how do you avoid fights?