While most dogs will eat nearly anything you put in front of them, veterinarians, breeders, and trainers will tell you that along with exercise, nothing affects the health of your dog more than the quality of their diet. And a natural diet is best of all because natural dog foods do not contain harmful man-made chemicals, additives, or preservatives. What’s wrong with man-made ingredients if they help keep dog food fresh or make it taste better? The problem with these ingredients lies in their possible effect on your dog’s well-being and the fact that they don’t align with what healthy dogs eat in the wild. Considering these factors, here are five reasons your dog should be eating natural:

  • Not solely carnivores – In the wild, dogs supplement their diet of meat with grasses, herbs, fruits, and root vegetables. Your choice of a natural dog food, therefore, should contain the same variety of ingredients that will keep your pet healthy based on a balanced diet.
  • Prevention is a priority – Some artificial colors are said to cause hyperactivity, aggression, and insomnia, as well as thyroid problems and cancers. As well, a preservative called ethoxyquin has been known to cause liver and blood disorders while the preservatives BHA and BHT are said to be carcinogens. A natural diet free of additives eliminates the risk of these and other possible health concerns.
  • Digestible advantages – Less gas, less odor, fewer trips outside, less waste to clean up. These are advantages that dog owners enjoy when they feed their pets natural dog foods. Because a dog’s body “knows” what to do with natural ingredients there are usually fewer digestive issues such as diarrhea or vomiting, too.
  • Less is more – When dogs eat nutritious food that provides what their bodies need, they require less of it. When dog food ingredients contain nutrient-dense calories, only need two meals per day, they beg less for food and treats, and you can maintain their body weight easier.
  • Dogs are what they eat – When your dogs are doing well their skin and coat appear healthy, their weight and energy level matches their age, and their stool is brown and firm. Natural dog foods promote these characteristics by including ingredients from a variety of food groups, using lean meats that are low in fat, and including only the most essential vitamin and nutrient supplements.

Among pet owners and professionals, there is still some disagreement over whether grains such as corn and wheat are healthy for dogs. Some experts say that dogs cannot digest grains while others claim grains cause allergies. Still, others say that grains provide dogs with necessary nutrients. Whatever your opinion, be sure to ask your veterinarian if a diet containing grains is suitable for your pet. Meanwhile, don’t risk affecting your canine’s behavior, health, or his life for the sake of additives that are not naturally part of a dog’s diet. Go natural!


7 Foods You Should Never Feed Your Dog

Posted by Dawn Donaldson


 

 


Since you want to take great care of your dog and provide it with the highest quality of life, we want to share seven foods that you should avoid ever feeding to your dog:


1. Chocolate


Although most dog owners already know that chocolate is bad for pets, we wanted to include it as a reminder. Since chocolate treats are especially common during the holiday season, always be careful to keep any of these items around your home fully out of reach of your dog.


2. Chewing Gum


While there's a lot of awareness about not letting dogs eat chocolate, many people aren't aware of the dangers that chewing gum presents. The issue with this item is it contains xylitoyl. This substance is also the reason why you should never let your dog use any dental products that are made for humans. In the event your dog ever eats chewing gum, it's important to go to an emergency vet right away.


3. Bulb Plants


This category include flowers like tulips and daffodils, as well as vegetables like shallots and onions. The good news is most bulb plants aren't immediately poisonous to dogs. But very high doses or long-term consumption can cause red blood cell damage, which is why you'll want to keep your dog away from plant that falls in this category.


4. Coffee


The chemical that makes chocolate very dangerous to dogs is Theobromine. What makes this chemical so problematic is how similar it is to caffeine. Because coffee is highly concentrated with caffeine, it's important to keep beans, brewed drinks and other any other forms of coffee away from your dog. This rule applies to all forms of caffeinated beverages.


5. Raisins and Grapes


As of now, scientists aren't aware of exactly what makes grapes poisonous to dogs. However, there's no question that this fruit can be quite toxic to them. Be sure your dog isn't ever within reach of a bowl of grapes or raisins. In the event that a dog does eat this fruit, prompt treatment by a vet can protect the dog's kidneys.


6. Mushrooms


Not all mushrooms are dangerous to dogs. The challenge is it's very hard to tell the harmless ones from those that are highly toxic. As a result, it's best to keep your dog away from any type of mushroom.


7. Avocados


While this food may come as a surprise, there are actually two dangers with avocados. In addition to the pit posing a choking danger, avocado can cause heart damage in dogs.


Avoiding the seven foods we covered above will help keep your dog safe. In addition to feeding your pup a healthy diet, regular exercise will also play a big role in its overall wellness. A great option for keeping your dog active is to bring it to dog day care in Cincinnati.

Helping Your Dog Lose Weight

Posted by Dawn Donaldson


Pets can look quite cute when they're carrying around extra weight. However, that doesn't mean this condition is good for their health. The reality is that dogs who are overweight face an increased risk of multiple health problems. And because more than half of all pets across the United States fall into the category of being overweight, it's an issue that deserves plenty of attention.


The Ideal Weight for Dogs


How much a dog should weigh will depend on its breed and size. While you can use a dog's ribs to gauge if it's overweight, underweight or about right, a more accurate way to assess your pet's weight is by discussing this issue with your vet. If your dog is currently overweight, a vet will be able to tell you exactly how much weight your pet should lose.


3 Ways to Help Your Dog Slim Down


Once you know the target weight for your dog, there are several different ways to help your pet reach it. The first is to take a long look at what you're feeding your dog, as well as how much you're feeding. Many big brand dog foods have a lot of fillers, additives and preservatives. Those ingredients can result in your dog consuming a lot of empty calories on a daily basis. They also take away from the overall nutritional value of food. If you discover that your dog's food falls into this category, it's time to look for a better option.


You'll also want to take time in gradually transitioning your dog from its old food to the new one. And once the transition is complete, be sure that you're feeding the right amount each day. Even high-quality food can cause a dog to gain weight if it's eating too much of it. The next way to help your dog slim down is by reducing treats. As with food, it's also a good idea to review the type of treats your dog gets and stick to ones that have some nutritional value.


Last but certainly not least is to help your dog be active on a daily basis. Some breeds may only require 20 to 30 minutes of activity a day to get in much better shape. The key is to be consistent! Since this is often a challenge for people with busy jobs, consider doggie daycare for your pet. When you bring your dog to us, you can count on your dog getting plenty of fun physical activity throughout the day!


October is Adopt a Dog Month

Posted by Dawn Donaldson

                                                 

If you've been thinking about adopting a dog, October is the perfect opportunity to make this decision official. Not only will bringing a dog into your home this fall make the holiday season even more memorable, but October is actually Adopt a Dog Month. Since there are a lot of great things about adopting a dog, we want to use this post to highlight five of them:


1. Save a Life


The sad reality of pet overpopulation in the United States is that 2.7 million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized every year. By making the decision to adopt a dog, you are giving that special animal the opportunity to live a full and happy life.


2. Start a Wonderful Journey


Having a pet is a very special experience. You'll be able to bond with your dog in all kinds of ways. Whether you live alone or have a family, the dog you adopt will become a central part of your daily life. From playing outside to hanging around the house, you'll be able to enjoy countless fun experiences with your pet.


3. Adoption is Affordable


Bringing a dog into your life is a financial commitment. However, it's a financial commitment that's completely manageable. And when you go the route of adopting, you won't have to worry about an overwhelming upfront cost. Shelters want dogs to find homes, which is why they work very hard to make this process a smooth transition for people adopting. Not only do shelters do a great job of keeping adopting costs down, but this fee typically includes spaying/neutering, first vaccinations and potentially even microchipping.


4. Lots of Benefits to Having a Dog


We mentioned above that bringing a dog home is an opportunity to save a life and the start of a wonderful journey. While you can give a dog a lot by adopting it, you'll also get so much from having a pet in your life. Studies have found that dogs provide numerous emotional and physical benefits to their owners. Whether it's having a reason to exercise more often or enjoying the stress-reducing effects that pets have, your dog will always be there for you.


5. Gift That Keeps Giving


When you adopt a dog from a shelter, you are freeing up valuable housing space that will allow the shelter to bring in another dog in need. Seeing the great experience you have after adopting may inspire others to do the same, which will continue the cycle of helping dogs that need it the most.


If you have any questions about local shelters or bringing your newly adopted dog to our daycare, don't hesitate to get in touch with us by calling 513-860-DOGS.

Winter Nutrition for Your Dogs

Posted by Dawn Donaldson

 

Now that winter is upon us in Cincinnati, it’s important to remember the changing needs your dog may have during this busy time of the year. Since it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the hustle and bustle of this season, we want to share a few tips on how you can keep your dog feeling its best:


Adjust Calories


The arrival of winter means your dog is probably going to have different caloric needs than during other times of the year. If your dog spends most of its time inside and may get less exercise during the winter due to the cold weather outside, you should consider reducing your dog’s caloric intake to compensate for the lower amount of energy it’s using on a daily basis.


On the other hand, if your dog spends a lot of time outside, you may actually want to increase the number of calories it gets every day. Taking this step will ensure your dog is able to maintain its optimal weight. Increasing portion size or adding another daily feeding are both ways to accomplish this task.


Go Slow and Consider Different Options, Including Supplements


Regardless of whether you decrease or increase your dog’s daily calories, you will want to ease into this transition. The reason that’s important is it will prevent your dog from experiencing any digestion issues related to a sudden change. It’s also worth looking at different options for how you want to feed your dog during the winter.


For example, some brands have blends of dog foods that are designed to minimize calories while still providing the perfect balance of nutrition. And if you have any concerns about areas where your dog's diet may be lacking, you can easily address them by using dog supplements. Chondroitin and glucosamine are both great options if you want to support your dog’s joint health during this cold time of the year.


Don’t Forget About Staying Active


In addition to what your dog eats during this season, the amount of exercise your pet gets will play a big role in its health and overall sense of well-being. So even though it’s not always the most pleasant experience when the weather is cold, it’s very important to take your dog out on a consistent basis. And if you’re not able to exercise your dog as often as you’d like because of work or other obligations, Dog Day, Every Day is here to help.


With our dog daycare program, which starts at just $15 a day, your dog will get to stay active in a positive and safe environment. We encourage dogs to explore their natural instinct as pack animals in large, open play spaces that are conducive to both high energy stimulation and quiet play.

 

Dogs don’t tend to tell their owners when they’re in pain. In fact, it’s much more common for dogs to try hiding any feelings of pain. Since you want to provide your dog with any care it may need, it’s important to pay close attention to your dog’s behavior and physical condition. One of the ways to do this is by monitoring your dog’s eyes. This element of your dog can provide a lot of information about its overall health. The reason is the eyes are directly connected to your dog’s neurologic systems, as well as its vascular ones.

While it may take a trained specialist to use an eye examination to identify the exact condition a dog has, this type of exam has the potential to reveal viral, bacterial and other systemic infections, as well as diabetes, hypertension and cancer. Although you don’t need to learn all the steps necessary to give your dog a comprehensive eye exam, knowing how to watch for changes and what some of those changes may mean can give you a useful tool for protecting your dog’s health.

Common Causes of Red Eye in Dogs

Most vets will tell you that redness is the most common reason related to the eyes that owners bring in their dogs. It’s possible that redness is just a sign of fatigue. Other possibilities include dry eye, uveitis, conjunctivitis, corneal ulceration or glaucoma. If you’re wondering how to tell the difference between a minor problem and something more serious, experts recommend checking your dog’s eyes in the morning. 

The whites of your dog’s eyes should look quite white with a few pink blood vessels in the morning. Being more bloodshot at the end of the day is normal, but increased redness of the white area may indicate ocular disease. If one eye looks redder than the other or if both eyes look redder than they did the day before, and you notice any other eye changes, definitely see a vet. And if you have any doubts, it’s always best to still have your dog checked out by a vet.

What’s Behind Haziness, Cloudiness, Squinting and/or Rubbing?

Haziness can be caused by an inflammation inside the eye or scratches on the cornea. Both conditions can be confirmed by a vet and then treated with medication. Cloudiness can be a sign of glaucoma, which may be treatable with medication or require surgery depending on its severity.

Squinting or rubbing are other things to watch for in your dog. If you notice either of these behaviors, it normally means something is causing ocular pain. Depending on the specific condition behind the pain, a vet will be able to treat it with anti-inflammatories, topical antibiotics or systemic pain management. - Dog Day Every Day 

After the heat of summer, it’s always nice to enjoy the cooler weather of fall. But because we’re in Cincinnati, it doesn’t take long for that initial cool to transition into temperatures that are downright chilly. When this happens, we all start wearing warmer clothes. Another common change is that it gets harder to spend much time outside.


While dog owners still get out to give their companion bathroom breaks, things like going to play in the park aren’t nearly as appealing. Helping keep their dogs active is one of the many reasons that owners bring their dogs to our daycare during the winter. 


With all of these seasonal shifts, dog owners often wonder if they should make any changes to their pet’s feeding routine. To answer that question, we want to take a quick look at pet nutrition, followed by highlighting the best feeding approach to take throughout fall and winter:


5 Reasons Proper Dog Nutrition is So Essential


Daily nutrition has a direct impact on a dog’s quality of life. Getting the right amount of calories, along with the right mix of nutrients, will ensure your dog feels and looks it best. Hair and skin health, immunity and preventing diseases, body condition, muscle tone, along with digestion and elimination are all reasons that optimal dog nutrition should be a priority throughout the year.


Understanding the Impact of Fall and Winter on a Dog’s Food Needs


As we mentioned at the start of this post, it’s fairly common for dogs to get less exercise during the colder months of the year. Even if the amount is only slightly less, the cumulative impact over several months can be meaningful. When dogs are burning less calories each day, they don’t need to consume as many.


Another change that occurs during the transition from fall to winter is the presence of less daylight will reduce a dog’s metabolism. By slowing down their metabolism through what’s referred to as the thrifty gene, dogs will conserve their calorie expenditure. However, for an indoor dog, that genetic adaption can work against them and cause weight gain if they continue eating the same amount of food.

So, what’s the verdict on fall and winter feeding? If your dog spends most of its time indoors, you will want to reduce feeding by at least 10%. You can monitor your dog’s weight and reduce slightly more if needed. Just be sure that you use a nutritionally complete dog food so that your dog doesn’t miss out on any essential nutrients.

On the other hand, if your dog is outside most of the time, you will need to increase daily calories to prevent weight loss. While the increase for an outdoor dog may ultimately be by two to three times during winter, you can start with gradual increases and monitor how your dog responds.

Spring Grooming Tips for Your Dog

Posted by Dawn Donaldson

Now that the weather is heating up in Cincinnati, you can enjoy spending more quality time with your dog outdoors. While temperatures aren’t yet at the levels they’ll hit during the peak of summer, a dog may still get quite hot after spending so much time inside. One way to help keep your dog’s temperature at an optimal level is through spring grooming. By following just a few guidelines, you’ll be able to keep your dog looking and feeling its best.

Dealing with the Aftermath of a Heavy Winter Coat

It’s common for dogs to grow a heavier coat during the cold months of winter. Although this type of coat is more obvious in some breeds than others, it’s pretty common across the canine spectrum. Once spring arrives and temperatures start going up, these heavier coats can get matted. And loose hair that doesn’t get matted can end up everywhere. The extent of shedding will depend on a dog’s breed. However, just about any kind of dog will benefit from lots of brushing during spring.

In terms of how to brush your dog, the best tool to use will depend on whether it has a coat that’s short, medium, long or undercoat. Once you find the best tool for your dog’s specific coat, you’ll want to brush in the direction that the hair grows. For mats, be sure to untangle them with your fingers instead of trying to break them up through brute force.

While some dogs may be easy enough to brush out in a short session, others may require more frequent brushing spread out over shorter sessions. And to get the best results from a solid spring brushing, be sure to promptly follow up with a bath. Just like people, a dog’s coat can dry out during the colder winter months, which is why you may want to include a conditioner in your bath routine.

Call a Professional

In addition to taking some grooming steps on your own, it’s also great to take advantage of professional help. At Dog Day, Every Day, we’re proud to offer a a variety of great spa services. Our bath service with blow dry and brush is a great way to freshen your dog. You can maximize freshness by adding a blueberry facial.

Despite your best efforts to follow the tips above, your dog’s shedding may be driving you crazy. Fortunately, our shed-less treatment or shed-less package are very effective at dealing with this issue. Complete your dog’s spring grooming with one of our thorough pawdicures. If you have any questions about our spa services or would like to schedule an appointment, you can easily reach us by calling 513-860-DOGS.

Going for a run outside always feels great. Even though there may be times during the run when you feel tired, the end result of a run will leave you feeling energized. Dogs feel the same way. Regardless of their size, they enjoy being able to burn off energy by running around and having fun.


While the fresh air is always nice, living in Cincinnati means the weather doesn’t always cooperate with plans to go for a run. Whether it’s too cold or all muddy outside due to rain, these conditions definitely aren’t ideal for enjoying a run.


What’s great about dog treadmills is even when the weather isn’t cooperating, it’s still possible for a dog to get plenty of exercise. Let’s take a look at the specific benefits that make this type of machine so great:


1. No More Excuses: Just as people do, dogs benefit from exercise consistency. Having a treadmill to use means that even when the weather is terrible, you won’t have an excuse for skipping a workout.


2. Minimizes Stress: Dog treadmills are designed to absorb shock, which makes them less stressful on dog’s joints than running on concrete or asphalt. This can be especially helpful for older dogs.


3. Controlled Speed: A treadmill eliminates the distractions that can occur outside and makes it possible for your dog to exercise at a consistent rate.


4. Really Fun: In addition to using a consistent speed, you can also add a fun twist by varying speeds. This gives your dog the ability to run in the way they want (which may not be possible when they’re outside on a leash).


Take Advantage of the Treadmill at Dog Day, Every Day


Although there are a lot of good things that can be said about dog treadmills, there are two notable drawbacks. The first drawback is their price. It’s difficult to find a reliable doggy treadmill for under $500. Unless you get lucky and find an amazing deal, you’re likely going to pay in the $500-$800 range for one. The other drawback is this device can take up quite a bit of space. While a dog treadmill is smaller than ones made for people, it may take up too much space in a place like an apartment.


If you’re concerned about either of those drawbacks, you’ll be happy to know that you can still take advantage of everything a dog treadmill has to offer without worrying about the downsides. The way you can make that happen is by bringing your dog to daycare at Dog Day, Every Day. In addition to our outdoor space, we also have a great dog treadmill!

Our rates start as low as $15 a day. And if you have any questions about our daycare program, don't hesitate to give us a call at 513-860-DOGS.

Your Guide to Dog Dental Health Month

Posted by Dawn Donaldson


February is officially here, which means that in addition to Valentine’s and Presidents’ Day, it’s also Pet Dental Health Awareness Month. While everyone knows that they should personally floss more often, it’s easy to forget just how important dental health is for dogs. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 80% of dogs show signs of oral disease by the age of three.


Since everyone wants their beloved pets to be healthy and happy for as long as possible, dental health is something to take very seriously. Given that only 14% of dogs receive dental care at the vet’s office, it’s safe to say that there’s a lot of room for improvement. So with that goal in mind, Dog Day Every Day wants to cover some of the things you can do to help your dog maximize its dental health:


Understand the Signs of Dental Disease


Taking care of your dog starts by understanding the signs that there’s something which needs to be addressed. Bad breath, loose or discolored teeth, teeth covered in tartar, drooling, dropping food from the mouth or your dog not being comfortable with having its mouth touched are all potential signs of dental disease. Bleeding from the mouth, loss of appetite or loss of weight are often signs of more serious oral health problems.


Take Your Dog for a Dental Exam


Even if you haven’t noticed any of the signs covered above, it’s still a good idea to take your dog for an annual dental exam. Giving a vet an opportunity to look in your dog’s mouth will ensure that any potential issues are noticed so that they can be properly addressed.


Start Brushing and Chewing


While it’s important to have a medical professional check out your dog’s teeth, gums and mouth, you can make the biggest impact by committing to a consistent brushing schedule. If you have any questions about how often you should brush (once a week is the rule of thumb but can vary), what type of toothpaste to use or the best dental chews to give your dog, don’t hesitate to ask your vet for guidance.


Schedule Dental Cleanings


When you visit the dentist, they’re always able to clean your teeth despite the fact that you brush at least twice a day. The same is true for dogs. In addition to consistent brushing at home, it’s important to schedule dental cleanings on a regular basis so that your dog's mouth can be completely cleaned out and prevent any issues with tartar build-up.


By putting these dental health habits into practice for your dog during February and then continuing to make them a priority throughout 2016, you can ensure that your dog has the healthiest year possible!