Category Archives: Dog Health

Dog Food with Toxic Ingredients?

Dog_food_ingredientsDo we feed dog food with toxic ingredients? Can it be that a dog food we all know very well from TV ads, that the manufacturer claims it is healthy, all natural and whole grains,  is in fact toxic?

You’ll have to decide. I don’t have the tools and the knowledge to determine if it is true or false.
On the consumer affair website you’ll find 1714 letters from dog owners claiming Beneful® Nestle Purina’s caused side affects and even killed their dog.  Some examples:

“started throwing up and had terrible diarrhea ”

“Exactly 7 days from start of mixing this food my poor German shepherd who was perfectly healthy died in my arms. ”

“I switched to Beneful dry dog food last spring thinking the commercials were right. I was under the assumption the food was good for dogs. My dog ended up with severe skin allergies and open sores due to the food. I had to take her to the vet’s office 3 different times and spent a bucket load of money on prescriptions. As soon as I took her off any Purina foods, she cleared up.”

You can read all complaints on the consumer affairs site

The issue i do have with the consumer affairs is that while i was on the site reading the Nestle Purina’s Beneful® consumer letters, a pop-up advertising other company’s dog food. In my book that is the last place i expect to see ads, and i ask myself (and you), is it ethical?

The FDA did investigate the food and the three factories where the food manufactured in the USA.  No action taken.

You can read FDA final report from 2013

What you can take from all of the above? 
WE should not be influenced by ads only. 
We need to check and investigate our-self. Read labels and understand the ingredients and the order they are mentioned. As they say, if any ingredient name is too long that you cannot pronounce it, it shouldn't be there. Move on to the the next food. If meat or fish is not at the top of the list, move on to the next food, and so on. 
After all, all we want is a happy and healthy 4-legged baby at home.

**The facts in this article wasn’t checked by me. I am only reporting from the consumer affairs site and the FDA site

Avoiding Ticks and Lyme Disease

Summer Dog Tick

Usually, when we are talking ticks, we have dogs on our mind. The truth is, ticks love the human blood as much as they like the dog’s and cat’s blood. Avoiding ticks & Lyme disease is for pets and parents (and any human), not only pet owner, who spends time in the outdoors.

The best chance to get the bloodsuckers is in a grassy area like your backyard, wooden areas,  etc. Unlike the believe, ticks are dangers all year round, especially in  the warmer areas.  The deer ticks are those who transfer Lyme disease, and in 2013 about 300,000 new cases of human disease were reported.

The best way to treat the disease, is trying to avoid it. For pet and parents, keep grass cut in the backyard, discard standing water (also good against mosquitoes),  if you are on a trail, walk in the center of the road..

Every day after the last walk outside,  it’s recommended to conduct a full body check of your pet (s), looking close to the skin as possible. If you find a tick, you need to remove it immediately.  Ticks carry lime and other diseases, depends on the tick type.

Brushing the pet fur / hair may be also useful.

Keep your dog groomed with short fur/ hair.

Use tick control for your pet. There are many products on the market of dog tick and flea control like collars, spray, one a month topical, powders. In addition, you can, or should, bathing him with tick and flea shampoo to kill whatever is crawling on him.  Do not use any of them on your cat since cats are highly sensitive to chemicals. If needed, ask your vet what to use.

Remember that sometimes it is hard to see the tick bite, The bites are painful to the dog,  and that it takes about 7 days for illness to affect the dog.

To remove ticks, never use your fingers. Use gloves and a fine-tipped tweezers. Grab the tick by the head (not the body) and just pull firmly directly outward, without twisting.  Then put it in a jar with alcohol and let her die…. Don’t wash it in the toilet, it won’t kill it.

If tick found on your pet, you should also check yourself.  Fined one, wash your clothes and dry on very high temperature.

In case of illness, it is usually treated with antibiotics.

More info can be found on:



Burn Calories with Your Dog The Fun Way.

Burn Calories with Your Dog The Fun Way.Overweight is a real problem in modern life and obese pet’s numbers are growing too. After a long, cold winter, most of us gained some extra pounds. Now, when the weather is nice, Why not put on the sneakers and  go out burn calories with your dog the fun way.

Here are some easy (if not, do it gradually) to burn some calories while having wonderful, bonding time with your dog. Even if he is not overweight, he’ll love the activity. So don’t use it as an excuse 🙂

Walking the dog – do it twice a day. He needs it and it’ll benefit you.

Take new routes so you will not be bored.

Change pace, start slow, increase it for a few minutes and back to the slower pace. Don’t overdo at the beginning.  In time, you’ll be able to go quicker and be less tired.

Benefits: Max has so much energy that, if not released,  may result in restlessness and aggression (some breeds need  harder work than others).  You are doing a big part of the 10,000 daily steps recommended and burning calories. You’ll meet other pet lovers, neighbors, who are walking their dogs. What a great way to socialize for human and animal.

Hiking –  If you love the outdoors, why not choosing a nice park, where pets allowed, and go hiking. Beginners (human and dog) should start with a short, flat  and easy trail. When you feel you both ready, take harder trail. Don’t forget to have water bottles for you and for your 4 – legged companion. Treats should be helpful, if you need him to do something he doesn’t realty want to do along the walk. Small breeds can’t walk very long distances, so plane the road with the dog abilities in mind.

Benefits: This is a full body and cardiovascular exercise for both of you. Improves body health and fitness. Burn calories and gives overall good physical and mental feeling.

Playing in the backyard – It is tempting to open the door and let the dog out.  Instead, throw a ball and compete with him, who gets the ball first.  Play tug while alternating hands. Chase each other (this is one of my dog’ s favorites).

Group Walking DogsJoin a group – It is fun to walk together with other pet owners.  Search on the Meetups site for a group in your area and join.




Do activities on a regular basis. Be innovative and create new games you and your dog enjoy together. Not only you lose weight, but you bond with your dog more than ever.

More ideas for dog and owner exercising on our 4-legged blog.

If you have an idea, just add it for everybody to know.