Pet AmberAlerts, Build a Dog House PLUS Great Pet Photos!

Summer Swimming Tips for Dogs

Supervision Is a Must When a Pet Is in the Pool

Summertime swimming safety tips don't just apply to children; they also apply to pets.

Cameron Mathison has important tips for keeping your pet safe this summer.With more than 8 million swimming pools in the United States, one in 1,028 pets drown in them each year, according to the American Pet Products Association.

While many people believe swimming comes naturally to dogs, their ability to sink or float depends on more than just doggie paddling.

"They do have a natural instinct to paddle, but sometimes, some dogs are thicker than others or their muscle conformation is very dense," said Jean Marie Cooper, of Water 4 Dogs , an animal rehabilitation center in New York City. "So for example, bulldogs, pugs, French bulldogs -- they try to swim but they do kind of sink. Their legs are not long so they're not gonna get a whole lot of thrust out of their stroke."

Ten Tips for Managing Your Dog’s Fear of Thunderstorms

Apopka, Orlando, Winter Park, FL -- While thunderstorms may cause fear, dogs can be trained to manage their reactions and feel calmer through all the noise and bright flashes. Bark Busters -- the world's largest dog training company -- offers 10 tips for managing your dog's fear of thunderstorms.

Thunderstorms are a common fear in dogs, causing many to panic and run away, become destructive, or even hurt themselves. Dogs can sense that a storm is on the way, and they often begin to show signs of anxiety even before the storm can be heard.

Here are some tips to help your dog learn to be relaxed during storms, fireworks or other loud disturbances that may be frightening to your pup.

1. Always keep proper identification securely fastened to your dog's collar in case he gets out. Consider talking to your veterinarian about implanting a universal microchip in your pet for lifelong identification. Remember to update your veterinary clinic and animal shelter with your correct contact information.

2. Give your dog a safe place to stay during storms. Inside your home, create a quiet den-like area where your dog can feel secure. A properly introduced crate or kennel can be a calming refuge for him. When a storm is brewing, lead your dog to his special place to help him feel calm and protected.

3. If your dog lives outside, cover his doghouse or dog run with a blanket to shield him from the bursts of lightning. Outside dogs can get lost or even injured if they escape their fenced yards in fear during storms.

4. Dogs can pick up fear or discomfort with storms from their family pack members, so it is important that you develop a calm, matter-of-fact attitude. Let your dog stay close and try to distract him with activities like play or brushing. Do not try to reassure him in a sympathetic voice—this will sound like praise and may increase his nervousness and confusion.

5. Some dogs become destructive when frightened. A crate is always the best way to keep your dog safe and your belongings intact. If you don't use a crate, remove any items in the room your dog could destroy or could hurt him if he chewed them.

6. During a storm, keep windows and curtains closed to reduce noise and bright flashes. Turn on a TV or radio playing soft music at normal volume to distract your dog and help him to relax.
7. Keep your dog away from doors that lead outside. Your dog may be under significant stress, which could result in unnecessary injury to others entering your home or cause him to dart outside and get lost or injured.

8. Your dog may become incontinent due to his extreme fear and the rush of adrenaline he experiences during a storm. Be prepared for this, and don't react if it occurs.

9. Dogs that continue to panic in thunderstorms may have to be reconditioned by creating an artificial storm with environmental recordings. While reconditioning can be a time-consuming procedure, it can have a high success rate. A qualified Bark Busters dog behavioral therapist can help your dog be calmer during storms.

10. In the most extreme cases, medication in conjunction with training may be the best solution to help your dog cope with his fear of storms. Consult with your veterinarian about possible treatments.
Your dog's phobia about thunderstorms won't get better on its own. Help him learn that it's just noise and is nothing for him to worry about. When he learns to relax and remain calm, you can relax and not worry about your dog during future storms.

Jodi J. Lishinski is a dog behavioral therapist and trainer with Bark Busters, the world's largest dog training company. Bark Busters trainers, who have trained more than 400,000 dogs worldwide, are renowned authorities in correcting dog behavior with all-natural, dog-friendly methods. Bark Busters training is the only service of its kind that offers a written lifetime support guarantee. For more information, call 1-877-500-BARK (2275) or visit

Build It Yourself Dog House Tips
by Moses Wright -

The dog owner who wants to build a dog house may want to look for a build it yourself dog house kit. These dog house kits contain the components necessary to build your own dog house. If dog owners want to build customized dog houses, they can look for instructions or dog house plans on the Internet.

The dog house must accommodate the size of the dog. The dog house should have an appropriate amount of space inside and have an opening that is an easy fit for the dog. If the dog house is being built for a puppy, the size of the dog house should be the appropriate size for an adult dog of that dog breed.

The materials for the dog house need to be weatherized since the dog house will be exposed to rain and any other weather conditions for that area. Cedar is considered a good choice for a dog house.

Several build it yourself dog house plans start with six wood panels, one for the floor, one for the roof, and four for the walls. The panels may be insulated to help the dog be warm in winter.

The front and rear walls of a build it yourself dog house often match except that the entrance to the dog house is cut out of the front wall. The dimensions of the sides of the dog house match.

For a flat roof, the front wall must be taller than the back wall. The top side of the side walls should be cut with an incline to match the slope of the roof from the front wall to the rear wall. Flat roofs are sloped to keep rain from pooling on the roof.

The front and rear walls in many dog house plans are more narrow than the side walls. This is not necessarily best since a narrow front wall may only have room for a centered dog house opening. The opening should be cut off center to help shield the dog from wind and rain.

It is a good idea to elevate the dog house a couple inches from the ground. If the floor of the dog house is setting on the ground, rain water can enter the dog house. A floor on the ground can also be effected by moisture from the ground.

About the Author:
Looking for unique dog houses and electric dog fence to protect your cherished puppies? Look no more, come into our website and get lots of ideas on building a cosy habitat for your canines today. Moses, our dog expert will give you tips on dog house designs.

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It's a Dog's Life Part 2
Los Angeles Times - Photos by Mel Melcon

Times photographer Mel Melcon has a knack for snapping shots of people with their dogs. Here are a few favorites from over the years.

Hamish McSporan McWee tails his owner, Judie DeMonte, into a Janss mall store for pet owners in Thousand Oaks.

Labrador retrievers with the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation return toys tossed in the pool by John Melville of Ojai.

Jaime Fraser of Ventura cools off her dog Koco in water fountain located at the California Street Mall in Ventura.

Scarlett, a 7-year-old bichon frise, awaits her owner at a Simi Valley mall.

Hilario Ramos relaxes with his dog Baby Taz on Cesar Chavez Ave in Boyle Heights.

Jose Mignone takes his two dogs, Lucky, left, and Mikki for a walk along Stern Ave. in Sherman Oaks. Lucky was in a stroller, because the dog is recovering from surgery for a torn ligament to its hind leg.

Luna, right, gets to know Dando in the Thousand Oaks.

Madison gets an up close look at a rattle snake while going through rattlesnake avoidance clinic in Oak View.

Summer Stetson reaches over to say hello to Joy who was going for a walk with her owner, Betty Saunders of Ojai, at San Buenaventura State Beach in Ventura.

Sagus wears bullet proof vest while having his picture taken outside of Ventura Police Department.

Cyndi Mahoney's Chihuahua-Jack Russell mix, Jack, is settled into a backpack before Mahoney gets on her bike in Simi Valley.

Director Adam Shankman with pals Jake, left, and Sierra.

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Want to Save Money on Pet Food?
by Jill Rosen - Baltimore Sun

Who isn't looking to save money -- if possible -- on dog and cat food?

Cloie Harnois, a worker at the Polka Dog Bakery, in Boston's South End neighborhood, holds out a treat for Paco, a Jack Russell Chihuahua mix, in front of the stores dog treat display. The boutique dog-bakery sells organic doggy treats as well as dried grains, herbs, and vegetables for dog owners to blend in the raw meat of their choice. AP Photo/Steven Senne.

I know, we all want the best for our furry ones, but if you can have the best and spend a little less, who wouldn't do it? Consumer Reports recently offered some good advice on trimming the pet food budget.

The dollar-conscious magazine says:

Pricey doesn’t mean better. Avoid buying pet food because of the high price, pretty packaging, or fancy name.

Homemade food can cut costs, but be sure it meets your pet’s nutritional needs. Dogs and cats each require about 40 different nutrients in very specific proportions. If you’re making your own pet food, take a look at or for more on homemade food and your pet’s health. And if you have a little extra money to spend, consider finding an animal nutritionist through the American College of Veterinary Nutrition.

Wet or dry? Our experts say there’s no nutritional difference, but the costs vary. Wet foods contain about 75 percent water, so you’ll need to buy more to get the same calories as in dry food.

Don’t buy into claims. For pet food, there’s no official definition of organic, human-grade, premium, no fillers, or gourmet. So, no need to spend more for these claims, unless there’s a real health concern. Gluten-free foods are generally necessary only for the tiny percentage of pets that are intolerant of that protein. And there’s some evidence that antioxidants—such as vitamin E—and some omega-3 fatty acids might enhance pets’ immunity or help protect against certain diseases, but the experts were split on whether you need to look for them. Offers Way to Find To Keep Your Pets Safe

There’s a new way to get the word out quickly about your lost dog or cat – so you can bring them back home.

New York, NY – There’s nothing scarier for a pet owner than the idea of a lost dog or cat. Fortunately, there’s a new way to get the word out quickly about your lost dog or cat – so you can bring them back home. is a new technology/service to help pet owners find their lost pets.

An AmberPetAlert will broadcast photos, description and details instantly to Veterinarians, Animal Shelters, Groomers, Animal Control, Police Stations, Media Outlets, Pet Stores and “Neighborhood Watch Volunteers” – all within a 50 to 200 mile radius of where your pet was last seen. Every person’s lost pet situation is analyzed on a case-by-case basis by the staff for the most successful pet return.

Sadly, most Shelter/Veterinarian alerting services are not very effective because they are sent only through e-mail. Some of these alerts will be caught by SPAM or Junk Mail filters and never be printed or posted by staff. All AmberPetAlert’s are physical posters sent via FedEx Express directly into the hands of recipients. AmberPetAlerts are sent via overnight delivery, tracked online and require a signature upon delivery. has two offices in the United States. For speedy delivery, your posters will ship from one of these locations. If you are located in the Western half of the United States, posters will ship from our West Coast office located in Los Angeles, California. If you are located on the East Coast of the United States, posters will ship from our East Coast office located in New York City.

At pet owners can receive a free copy of our Lost Pet Recovery Guide. The Lost Pet Recovery Guide includes step-by-step instructions and actions to take to maximize your pet’s chances of coming home safely. Our unique pet recovery guide gives advice for specific types of pets and the time period you are currently in with a lost pet situation.

Members who issue an Amber Pet Alert and follow the steps in our Pet Recovery Guide will safely recover their pet 75% of the time. The Amber Pet Alert program is your lost pet’s best chance of coming home safely and quickly. Amber Pet Alert also has a Neighborhood Watch Program, where anyone can sign up to look for lost pets in their neighborhood.

Visit or call The Amber Pet Alert hotline – 1-888-808-PETS (7387)

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“How-To” Guide: Caring for a Chinchilla

Chinchilla’s are wonderful little creatures that almost always get referred to as another type of animal. There really aren’t a great deal of people who really know what a chinchilla is or what it does for that matter. Chinchillas can closely resemble several animals, including squirrels and rabbits, however the care of a chinchilla is quite different than either of those animals! The care of a chinchilla is not a particularly hard process, however there are a few things one must remember when caring for a chinchilla.

One of the things you will notice about them is their insatiable appetite for chewing on anything that comes their way. Literally their first reaction to it will be to discover how much they can nibble on it. It is actually quite an adorable process to watch. Chinchilla’s are anything but ugly. Their chewing habit can even be entertaining to watch as they also usually use their small little hands to hold the object that you give them. Feeding a chinchilla often could help to prevent the chewing, but it really is a natural process for them.

Besides chewing it is also very important that you provide your chinchilla with a regular bath of dust. This bath is nature’s way to protect its fur and keep the outer coat healthy. Just as we wash our bodies to keep them clean and our skin healthy, chinchilla’s need the same for their coats. So make sure to maintain a dust bath schedule with your pet chinchilla.

No matter what kind of pet you have, it is important to accustom the pet to a certain social life. Pets must have certain amounts of social interaction, much as we do. This can be accomplished by simply holding them while they take food from your hand and letting them explore the house in a supervised manner. If you decide to let it out, make sure to have a small barricaded area set up for them. This is important because chinchillas are fast and can jump relatively high. Once the pen is set up feel free to sit in there with him and let him interact with you.

By following all of these pet chinchilla care steps you will not only have a fantastic relationship with your chinchilla you will also have a healthy pet. They really are amazing creatures and great pets to have. So make sure to treat your chinchilla properly.

How To Find The Perfect Dog For Me?

Well, this has been a long time coming… I’ve always wanted a dog, ever since I was really young (19 now), but due to my allergies I was not able to get one. Well a few years past I found out that the allergies toward dogs have vanished, but still couldn’t get one because of the apartment I live in has a strict rule about dogs.
BUT… I am moving in two weeks, specifically into a dog-able environment, and I am TOTALLY PSYCHED!! I am just planning ahead to the kind of breed would best suit my lifestyle. If there are any dog experts out there… I could really appretiate some advice.

I’d like a medium-sized dog (not too small, or too big), that enjoys a lot walking, playful fun, and is generally compassionate. I’ve been personally thinking of getting a Beagle, because they are sooo darn cute and playful, but I’d like to do some further research.

I realize that every dog has their own personality, but I hear that certain breeds display particular traits, so I thought I’d see!


12 Responses to “How To Find The Perfect Dog For Me?”
Lil' Lori says:

I recommend:
West Highland Terrier (westie)
Cocker Spaniel
Terrier mix(Jack Russel, Fox, etc.)
Boston Terrier

Living in an apartment you don’t want a dog that has to much energy. But also enjoys a good walk or run. Dogs such as a Heeler, Border Collie, Aussie and such would not work will in an apartment because they are all highly active dogs that needs lots of room to run. Although they are very smart.

I think your choice of a Beagle would work out well. I would also check your local animal shelters you could find the perfect dog there. Growing up i had a Cocker Spaniel mix and she was awesome. She had to be put down last Dec at 15. I have a 3yr old Shar Pei/Lab right now and he is awesome. But bigger then you would like it think.

Kim S says:

First of all beagles are hunters and howlers perhaps not a good apartment dog. Secondly you have waited this long take your time and research.
Pets are a big responsibility, you must have to work, who is going to feed, entertain, and train your dog? And you do know that there are shots and vet bills! You have to walk then and clean up after them, that’s a must.

You don’t get to have them for a while they live along time! Do you go to school and work? Is the dog going to be home for hours tearing things up, that you’ll have to pay to repair? When you get tired of the dog what then? OK, now that you’ve thought that out.

Size does matter. Big dogs need big room. You also need to prepare what you need for you dog before you bring your pet home. Do you want your dog safely tucked int his cage, what type of food do you need to feed your dog? Toys, collar, leash. Oh don’t forget bowls.

Oh! ya! and when you and you friends want to take off to Florida for Spring break who takes care of the dog? How much does boarding cost?
Be smart read up on the types of dogs pros’s and con’s.

save money coupons says:

Hey, congratulations on being able to get a dog! I actually ran your requirements through a dog breed selector, and here were the top choices. Good luck!

American Cocker Spaniel
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
English Cocker Spaniel.

Here is the dog breed selector I used:…
After you have figured out what breed you want, I’d try using to find a dog in a rescue in your area; or if you want something with AKC papers try and go to their puppy section.
Good luck; I hope this helps!

Gems says:

-how much excersize are you willing to offer
-does your place have a yard?
-what about neighbors?
-how long will the dog be alone during the day?
-you have no experience with dogs are you looking for an easy to train first timers dog or are you willing to put in the extra time and effort for a harder to train breed?
-what kind of grooming are you looking for?
-what about noise level?
-shedding level?
-are you planning on kids in the future?
-do you have lots of friends over or are you more of a home body who likes to spend time alone…
-personally if your lookig for a first time breed a beagle is NOT the breed for you, they are stubborn, hard to train and can be very destructive…not to mention LOUD!
-Avoid the hound group, scent hounds simply dont listen well and sighhounds are very aloof.

and id avoid most of the terriers due to thier high energy.
my suggestion to you wuld be to go to your local shelter and see if one pick you.
or go to a local all breed dog show…here you can meet most breeds all in one place and most breeders/handlers are more than willing to talk about their breed so long as their not in a rush.

take your time…find the best dog for you and PLEASE consider adopting!

Hdwnkd4 says:

I’m glad you’ve done your research and seem very ready to own a puppy. I personally have a mutt that is mostly boxer and the other part border collie, that seems to fit your description perfectly. Just a note on the beagle: They tend to have barking problems. Of course this can be fixed with good training, so if you really want one, go for it. Good luck!

stop dreaming start action says:

i’d get a golden retriever.
theyre really playful and loveable.
but if you want something smaller then i’d get a lhasa apso.
they dont shed, they have great personalities, and theyre adorable!!
i have 2 goldens and 1 lhasa so i am writing from experience.. i’ve had beagles before and theyre not all that great. ive also had jack russel terriors but theyre wayyy to hiper.

ROCKMUM luvs david bowie says:

ive got a whippet, so my advice is DONT GET ONE!, LOL
i think i just got a weird one, hes so bad, we tried training him but he must b brain dead, lol
id go for the beagle, they r beautiful dogs, xxxxxxxx

kshawn g says:

Well Max if you take my advice get a Jermain Shepperd .They are good dogs you will like the dog.

doggeema says:

Shoulds like you would be a good dog owner!, You would probably be good with an Australian Cattle Dog, Blue heeler, Red heeler, They are all the same breed with different names, Acd (australian cattle dogs) would be a good choice because they love there master will guard him with there life and will have a good play with you!. And love to go for walks!!!

bubblyki says:

I’d choose a Blue Heeler, they love to be active and don’t need much grooming, they’re short haired.

Puggle power says:

Border collie(short haired)
blue healer
Shiba inu
got to or
to find the perfect dog for you
good luck

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