DOGA Sessions – Yoga With Your Dog

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By Fiona Appleton

walkingdogHave you heard about Doga classes being held in your neighborhood? Are you intrigued by what it is all about and what are the benefits of such sessions?

New yoga form—known as Doga—became popular in last few years. Doga is yoga with your companion pet that helps you connect with your pooch at a deeper level. Doga benefits both the dog and the dog-owner. Doga has meditative effects that calm your nerves and the dog’s anxious behaviors.

Doga is not about fidos imitating your exact poses, but a sense of companionship to provide an extra motivation for you to continue the classes. However, not all pooches are interested entirely, so it’s better to develop positive associations in the Fido’s mind to make his routine.

Here are some of the benefits you can reap after joining Doga classes:

Stronger Bond with Fido:

Yoga with the dog is simply a fun-filled exercise that strengthens the bond between you and your dog. When both of you are involved in a single relaxing activity, the dog feels important and loved, so his anxiety fades away. The exercise makes you mindful of the dog’s body language and, similarly, increases the dog’s focus on your commands.

The dogs relax as the soft music fills up the surrounding space. Moreover, dogs are interested in the pet-massage they get during the session.

Dog’s love to gain your attention will act as a trigger to leave behind unwanted behaviors. You will find him behave more calmly and listen to your commands more attentively as his focus will be enhanced.

Beware of dog poops during the class, especially, if he is suffering from stomach problem. Take the poop bags and pooper scooper to clean up after your dog.

Mind and Body Connectivity:

The mindfulness exercise develops a feeling of connectedness in both the yogi and dogi.  It relaxes the muscles via stretches, and both parties involved feel exhausted yet relaxed.

Deep breathing and relaxing stretches are the crux of Doga sessions. Doga is based on the model of meditating with a close partner to help reduce the sense of solitude. It assists in relaxing dog and you mentally as well as physically.

The meditation together develops awareness in you about the dog’s behavior. It will help you maintain a patient behavior towards the little furball.

Better Social Skills:

As the dog parks create an opportunity for you to socialize with people, doga class will provide you a chance to meet more self-aware and mindful people. If you are not fond of the extroverts, at doga class, you will encounter many introverts or I would say, like-minded people.

Dog parks do not necessarily have well-trained and well-behaved dogs, but doga class is the right place to socialize, for your four-legged. Your pooch may find some well-behaved ‘poochy furrends’ at the doga class. Your dog will remind you daily to visit the yoga class so they can meet some good ‘furrends.’ It might help the pooch improve his behavior by imitating other dogs.

Exhausting Stretches:

The stretches will not just relax your muscles but also exhaust the pooch too.

If you have an obese one, doga class will burn the extra calories without him knowing it and getting hungry too often.

If you want a substitute for daily long walks, join doga classes to enjoy greater benefits. With increased blood circulation, the dog begins to feel calmer and abandon destructive behaviors.

Additionally, daily dog massage will strengthen the bones to prevent injuries, early onset of arthritis, or hip dysplasia.

If the dog has survived a trauma recently, the mind-full exercise will ease the pain and strengthen the muscles again.

Joyful Activity:

In an attempt to imitate you, you will find the pooch making funny poses that will entertain you throughout the class. Their curious spirit is a great distraction from your stress.

The dog enjoys the equal fun at the class because he gets to meet and play with his ‘furrends.’ They get entertained by the playtime they get between sessions.

– Fiona Appleton is a Labrador owner. She is the manager of ultimatehomelife.com which has been developed to help people solve the troubles of pet ownership. She is an active advocate of animal protection campaigns. She wants people to understand that dog-behavior is reflective of our behavior.

What To Do If A Dog Is Having A Seizure

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your comments below…..

Epilepsy is a seizure disorder that occurs in humans and dogs. 1 in 26 Americans will develop epilepsy, 1 in 5 Dogs will too. MedVet Medical & Cancer Centers for Pets is participating in promoting International Epilepsy Day on Monday, February 8.

walkingdogEpilepsy is a seizure disorder that occurs in humans and dogs. MedVet Medical & Cancer Centers for Pets is participating in promoting International Epilepsy Day on Monday, February 8th. This is an annual event to promote awareness of epilepsy worldwide. Epileptic seizures can vary from brief and very subtle trembling to long periods of vigorous shaking and disrupt lifestyles for affected people and their canine best friends. Similar to people with epilepsy, the cause is unknown in most dogs, although more serious problems, such as trauma, infections or cancers also occur.

According to the American Epilepsy Society, 1 in 26 Americans will develop epilepsy in their lifetime adding more than 200,000 new epilepsy cases annually to the 3 million already living with the condition in the US. According to Dr. Michael Podell, MSc, DVM, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology), head of the Neurology and Neurosurgery department at MedVet Chicago and Affiliate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Pritzker School of Medicine at the University of Chicago, “the prevalence of epilepsy in dogs in the U.S. may range from 0.55 percent to 5 percent.” That could mean that about two million dogs are affected.

Dr. Michael Podell of MedVet Chicago states, “There is no cure for epilepsy. Living with epilepsy can be extremely difficult not only for the humans and dogs that have the disease but also for the caregivers. Unlike other diseases, a long period of normal activity may occur between the seizure events. The focus of treatment is to balance the best quality of life for the patient and owner with optimal seizure control.” The diagnosis of epilepsy involves consultation with a board-certified veterinary neurologist who may recommend more advanced diagnostic tests such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Many patients do not necessarily need more tests, but to start appropriate anticonvulsant treatment. Many of these drugs used to control seizures in humans and dogs are the same.

Dr. Podell was the chair of the panel and lead author on the upcoming American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) Consensus Statement by the College of Neurology to be published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine titled: “2015 ACVIM Small Animal Consensus Statement on Seizure Management in Dogs.” Dr. Podell states that he hopes this information “helps to improve the care and treatment of epileptic dogs throughout the world.” Similar to the International League Against Epilepsy, which works to provide guidelines for best practice standards of care for epileptic people, the International Veterinary Epilepsy Task Force (IVETF) was recently established to work towards these same goals in veterinary medicine. Dr. Podell is one of the founding members of the IVETF, which held their inaugural meeting this past year, and has also published several consensus statements on epilepsy.

About Canine Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a common disease in dogs and can occur in most other animal species. The disorder is characterized by unpredictable seizures in which the brain produces sudden bursts of electrical energy. Seizures differ in movements and alternations in consciousness from subtle to severe tonic-clonic muscle movements. There is not a cure for epilepsy however daily medication can decrease the frequency and severity of the seizures in the majority of dogs. Commonly used drugs include phenobarbital, bromide, zonisamide, and levetiracetam.

What to Do if A Dog is Having a Seizure

If your dog has a seizure, keep your dog safe. If your dog is near stairs or water, move them away while taking care not to get bit. Seizuring dogs are not aware of what they are doing and their chomping behavior can result in severe bites. Dogs will not swallow their tongues so stay away from their mouths. Most seizures cease in two to three minutes. If your dog seizures, please call your veterinarian or emergency clinic immediately.

If a pet is experiencing a medical emergency, pet owners are encouraged to immediately contact their family veterinarian or MedVet Chicago for guidance and help. MedVet Chicago can be reached 24 hours a day, every day of the year, by calling (773) 281-7110 or in-person at 3123 N. Clybourn Ave., Chicago, IL 60618. For more about MedVet, go to medvetforpets.com.

About MedVet Chicago

MedVet Chicago (formerly Chicago Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Center) is a 24-hour emergency, critical care and specialty animal hospital which is part of the MedVet Medical & Cancer Centers for Pets patient care family. MedVet is employee owned, veterinary led, and is leading specialty healthcare for pets. MedVet provides specialty referral services for in-depth care and patient management, as well as emergency services, available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. More than 100,000 dogs and cats are treated annually at MedVet’s expanding network of medical centers across the country.

About Dr. Podell

Michael Podell, DVM, MSc, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) is a board-certified veterinary neurologist at MedVet Chicago. Dr. Podell was a Full Professor in the Departments of Veterinary Clinical Sciences and Neurology at The Ohio State University until 2002, when he moved to Chicago to open the area’s first veterinary neurology and neurosurgery practice. Currently, Dr. Podell continues to demonstrate his passion for veterinary medicine and neurological sciences through his daily work with neurologic patients at MedVet Chicago, numerous published book chapters and articles, and as an Affiliate Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Pritzker School of Medicine at the University of Chicago. Dr. Podell is actively engaged in comparative medicine curative research for animals and people through clinical trials, and educating the future generation of veterinary neurologists.

5 Secrets To Keep Your Dog Healthy

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Thank you to PRWeb for supplying this article. Please share your thoughts in the comments section…..

walkingdogIf you own a dog, caring for it is an important responsibility that requires a real and genuine personal commitment. It is important to make sure that everyone in the family shares in this responsibility and commitment. The dog that you bring into your home must honestly feel loved by each family member.

You can do five important things when caring for a dog to ensure it stays happy and healthy.

The first thing to know is that your dog needs water. Like any other living thing, your dog always needs fresh water to stay healthy. Poorly regulated contaminants, including harmful chemicals such as lead and even low levels of prescription medication, can enter into your tap water supply. The solution is to have a good water filter. A water filter will help remove most harmful toxins, making the water much healthier for both you and your dog.

The second thing your dog needs is highly nutritious, quality food. When you feed your dog, it is important to choose healthy ingredients. Many dog food labels on the market today are nutritiously quite deceiving. They may have dubious sourced ingredients or product mixes to comply with government labeling standards. They may contain things that you would probably not want your dog to eat. A good dog food is one that meets the higher labeling standard of being “complete and balanced.” When you choose your dog food look for one with more meat than fillers. When you are looking at the package look to see that it lists meats like lamb, beef, or chicken and that the fat to protein content meets recommended nutritional guidelines. Also, look to see if it contains natural preservatives, as these are much healthier for your dog.

The third thing you can do is make sure that your dog receives proper health care. It is very important that you take your dog to the vet for regular check-ups. Flea and heartworm control are common canine conditions that are easy to diagnose and prevent but extremely costly if not treated. Heartworms are parasitic mosquito-borne infections known to kill or injure dogs by damaging the heart and blood vessels. To paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, taking your dog to the vet is an ounce of prevention worth a pound of cure.

The fourth thing you can do is exercise your dog. Many people don’t think about this as being one of the most important things that keeps a dog healthy, but it is. In the United States, 40 percent of dogs are considered overweight. Just like humans, it is important to keep your dog’s weight under control because it can lead to health problems. Help your dog exercise by doing things like taking it for daily walks. Exercise and playful workouts not only enhance the bonding experience but also can help avoid some behavioral problems.

Lastly, and probably the most important thing you can do for your dog is show affection. Letting your dog know that you care affects their health in the most positive way. To learn more visit, http://www.ccprotectiondogs.com

Owning A Dog Can Improve Your Health

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By Ken Myers

walkingdogThere are various reasons for owning a dog or any pet for that matter, but today I am going to boast on behalf of our canine friends. If you are on the fence about getting a dog then I am here to tell you all the reasons why it would be a benefit to you as a single person or as a family dog.

1. Walking your dog gets you healthy – Unless you live on a farm with lots and lots of room for a dog to run you will be walking the dog. In turn this will make you a healthier and happier individual. Dogs love to go for walks and will encourage you to take your walk every day and you will have a loving, enjoyable, warm, interested companion. Not to mention a great protector. You may think, what if I have a small breed, what can they do for me? I can tell you from experience that the small breeds can be just as scary as the larger dogs. When I was a teen a friend of mine had a Chihuahua and every time I came to see them that dog would attack me. I was terrified and called ahead to get it restrained. It was so fast and little it was hard to figure out where it was going to attack next! I myself own a two pound Toy Fox Terrier who thinks she is a Pit Bull. She stands her ground with the biggest dog and lets you know exactly where she stands at all times. The funny thing is that no larger dog or person is yet to challenge her!

2. Petting dogs lowers your blood pressure – Studies have been done and have substantiated that petting a dog or any animal lowers your blood pressure. So for those of us with high blood pressure this is ideal. This is also beneficial for those who do not suffer from high blood pressure but are in a high stress environment and need the calming affect of a canine.

3. Recovering from a heart attack – Statistics show that pet owners recover faster from heart attacks when they own a pet. It also shows that they have better chances for survival if they suffer a heart attack than those that do not own pets.

4. Dogs can detect epileptic seizures and diabetic blood sugar levels – There are studies being done regarding dogs detecting epileptic seizures, it seems there is some controversy on the subject. The diabetic dogs are a proven method for those who have Type 1 Diabetes however. It seems dogs can be trained to smell changes in the breath of their masters and let them know when their blood sugars are dropping to a critical level. I have some first-hand experience with this one as well. I have an aunt who is a Type 1 Diabetic and she has owned multiple Yorkshire Terriers who were all valuable to her and one who she deemed as a miracle dog. Her dog, Kylie, would awaken her from sleep every time her blood sugar would drop too low. It seems that my Aunt is a brittle diabetic and her blood sugar would nine times out of ten drop at night while she was asleep. Kylie would wake her every time. What a marvelous blessing this dog has been to my Aunt!

Having a pet of any kind helps their loneliness but there is just something about a dog there to greet you at the door with a wagging tail that really makes you feel at home.

5. Improves loneliness, heals personal trauma, and helps your social life – There are so many people today who live alone and not by choice. The elderly, the singles, and the widowers are just a few examples of those who live in solitude. Having a pet of any kind helps their loneliness but there is just something about a dog there to greet you at the door with a wagging tail that really makes you feel at home. It does include extra responsibility for the individual but the benefits of love, protection, exercise, and social interaction that a dog brings can be the difference that a lonely individual needs today. Dogs can also benefit those who have suffered personal trauma as in the case of loss of a loved one. If dogs are nothing else they are great comforters and are always there for you. There is something about having a warm, living creature by your side when you are hurting. And they do not need to say a word. I was in a serious automobile accident and could not walk for a long period of time. I had an animal that stayed by my side, listened, put a warm paw on my arm and looked in my eyes and seemed to feel my emotions. It is a wonderful thing to have a companion like this at critical times in one’s life. It is also true that you always have a social companion and they often draw you to other dog lovers. When you go to a dog park and walk your dog you meet other dog lovers and can strike up friendships. You can take your dog to the large pet stores and meet people who are of the same mind.

6. Protection – Dogs are a means of protection no matter what their size due to their heightened sense of smell, sight, and hearing. They can hear things we cannot and when we are dead to the world in sleep they are still very alert. They can smell smoke and alert us to fire, they can see better than we can in the dark. They are a wonderful sense of security; just knowing you will be alerted to an intruder is benefit enough. They can also tell the difference in the sound of your car engine verses a stranger, as well as your voice and scent as compared to any other human. I have had many dogs in my lifetime and all hold a dear place in my heart but none as beloved as my dear German Sheppard Max. I was a teenager and we lived on a three acre piece of property out in the outskirts of town. My dear Max would circle the entire property all through the night and day but especially during the nights. We lived in a remote area in Florida near some swamps so this meant there were many varieties of animals that would visit us from time to time. He took care of any and all that would encroach upon his domain. If a car drove through our gates they were not allowed to get out unless he knew them. We would have to come out of the house and tell him that they were okay, they were our friends. I have particularly fond memories of my dates bringing me home at night. There was absolutely no kissing goodnight once you left the car. Even if Max knew them well they were not allowed to get that close to me. He was not mean to those he knew and loved, just strict. He would push in between us and separate us and if they still persisted he would stand up and put his paws on their shoulders and look them in the eye. He got his meaning across quick and to the point. My Father traveled a lot and I think Max knew that he had to take over the role as the great protector!

boydog7. Calming effect on hyperactive or over-aggressive children, self esteem, anti-depressant, and teaches responsibility – The benefits of a dog on children is wide spread in that they can help a child dealing with ADHD and other physical or emotional issues because they are so comforting and have pretty much unlimited patience and energy to spend with children (depending on the breed of course). They are said to also instill better self-esteem in the lives of children who own them. They are said to do much better in school and in social situations. Feeling unconditional love by a dog can be a wonderful experience. Playing with a dog can also elevate your serotonin and dopamine levels which help with depression, anxiety, and a general sense of well being in any individual including children. It is also a great way to teach your children responsibility when they are the care of an animal in their charge. Of course you will want to be there to oversee that the dog is getting the proper care but allow the child to do the actual work until they completely take over the responsibility.

There are also working dogs that help us in so many ways. There are Seeing Eye dogs, hearing dogs, therapy dogs that help in recovering patients of illness and therapy dogs for mental health patients. Dogs that protect us who work for the police and the army, search and rescue dogs who find us when we are lost or hurt as well. The loyal farm dogs are in place to take care of the flocks and protect the animals on the farms from predators. They guard us, entertain us, love us, and never want to leave us. There are so many benefits to having a dog and they do so much to keep us happy, well, and safe. I do believe that the positive outweighs any negatives you can think of!

– Ken Myers is the founder of longhornleads.com & has learned over the years the importance of focusing on what the customer is looking for and literally serving it to them. He doesn’t try to create a need; instead he tries to satisfy the existing demand for information on products and services.

Guest Post – Julie Austin, How Man’s Best Friend Can Help Your Family Live A Longer, Healthier Life

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dogsilouette

Man’s Best Friend Can Help Your Family Live A Longer, Healthier Life

Growing up I can’t remember a time when there wasn’t a dog in the house. I just thought they were good buddies, but I never knew they were actually helping us live longer. In fact, studies show that people who have dogs live an average of 3 years longer than non-dog owners.

If that’s not a good enough reason, then wait, there’s more! Any dog owner will tell you that within a few minutes of being around Fido or Scruffy, they just simply feel better and less stressed. Science tells us it’s not just your imagination. The stress hormone cortisol is actually lowered after spending time with the family dog. Anything that lowers stress is good for your overall health.

Studies show that people who have dogs live an average of 3 years longer than non-dog owners.

Researchers have found that kids who grow up on a farm with animals or in a home with dogs are less likely to develop allergies. They also tend to have a healthier immune system and are less likely to be depressed. Studies show that dog owners are more likely to see the world in a more positive way and are less likely to have as much anxiety.

The American Journal for Preventive Medicine revealed that “dog owners walked an average of 300 minutes a week compared to non-dog owners who walked an average of 168 minutes a week.” And a University of Virgina study showed that teenagers got an average of 15 minutes more exercise a week than those that didn’t have a dog.

walkingdogJust the fact that dogs have to be walked at least twice a day forces you to get some exercise. But it’s even better than that. Have you ever noticed that dogs are a good conversation starter? They also kind of force you to be social, which is good for your mental health. I’ve noticed that the neighbors refer to people as Max’s mom or Molly’s dad. Just having a dog makes people more comfortable about talking to strangers and gives them something in common to talk about.

A doggie park is a great way to meet new friends and stay active at the same time. Encourage the kids to bring a Frisbee and a ball and you’ve just created your own workout routine. There are even yoga classes for people and their dogs called doga.

Watch for signs that your dog is tiring or dehydrated and bring plenty of water for them. Just like a person who is just starting a workout routine, make sure you ease the dog into it slowly and go at their pace. If you notice they are drooling, stumbling or having trouble breathing, stop for the day. It’s best to wait until they are at least 9 months old before engaging them in any strenuous exercise. Also, older dogs usually don’t have the same energy as a young child, so take it easy with them as well.

Owning a dog is as good for the kids as it is for adults. But owning a dog is a big responsibility. Make sure the whole family is on board with the job of caring for them. As any dog owner will tell you, a dog is one of the greatest joys in life, and now we know they also extend our lives as well.

– Julie Austin is an award-winning writer and inventor. Her product Swiggies, wrist water bottles for adults and kids, was a NASDAQ product of the year semi finalist and are sold in over 20 countries. They have been approved by Child Safe International as a safe, BPA-free product.