Dog Training Tips

Would you like to improve your dog’s behavior? Do you have problems such as aggressiveness, pulling on the leash, being fussy with food, lack of obedience, etc?

Until recently the only option was to hire a dog trainer. However, NZ’s own Doggy Dan now has a website filled with instructional videos that show you very clearly how to deal with any issue you can think of in training your dog.

Dan was recently endorsed by the SPCA and is widely respected as one of the world’s leading trainers, so if you’re having any issues, or would just like to have a brilliantly trained dog, check out his website here:

The problem with by-products in pet food

The majority of dried pet food brands available on the market contain ingredients labelled “by products”. They may be labelled as chicken, poultry, lamb or meat.

Looks harmless enough, but that’s not the full story. Depending on what type of by-product they are, they will not be doing your pet much good…and they may even be harmful.

If the by-product is from a specified type of animal – chicken, poultry – etc then the result is not as bad as it could be. The petfood industry’s standard definition of chicken by-product, for example, is:

“the non-rendered clean parts of carcasses of slaughtered chickens such as heads, feet, viscera, free from fecal content and foreign matter except in such trace amounts as might occur unavoidably in good factory practice”

In other words, all of the waste unfit for human consumption.

However, if the animal is not specified, the by-product could contain almost anything. The industry standard definition of “meat by-product” is:

“the non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals. It includes, but is not limited to lungs, spleen, kidneys, brain, livers, blood, bone, partially defatted low temperature fatty tissue, and stomachs and intestines freed of their contents.”

In a word, by-products are simply slaughterhouse waste. So why do petfood companies use them?

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Water: one of the major causes of digestive problems in dogs

You might be interested to know that water can be one of the major causes of digestive problems for pets. When a dog or cat drink, bacteria in their mouth will drip and down and can contaminate their drinking water. Within hours these bacteria can grow to the  point where they pose a risk to the animal’s digestive tract. Make sure you clean the bowl and change your pet’s water twice a day. Also use the largest bowl you can find.
Food is often blamed for a dog’s ‘sensitive’ stomach, and rightly so. However, if you are feeding a quality food (without by-products or fillers) it is less likely the food – could it be the water?

Are bones good to feed a dog?

This from

“RAW MEATY BONES (especially from poultry) can be quite healthy and are generally considered safe and digestible for most dogs. However, never feed cooked bones of any kind. And avoid weight bearing leg bones from larger animals. They can easily splinter and become dangerous.”

Dogs are obviously designed to eat raw food, including bones. Salmonella and other bacteria can definitely be a concern, however, so make sure the bones come from a reasonable source. The real problem with cooked bones, however, is that they can easily splinter inside your pet.

Raw bones can also promote gum and teeth health, although a quality dried food kibble can also perform the same function.


The Difference Food REALLY Makes to Your Dog…… Separating Truth From Marketing

“It has taken me 20 years as veterinary doctor to realize that 90% of health problems in dogs is due to their food” (Dr Michael W. Fox)

With so many different brands of dog food on the market – and the billions spent on advertising – it is easy to believe that there isn’t a lot of difference between dog foods. After all, they all claim to offer “complete nutrition” and be “totally healthy” for your pet. They all come with attractive packaging and show images of healthy, happy pets.  And while we know that the more expensive foods are probably a bit better for our dog’s health, the cheaper ones sold in supermarkets can’t be that bad….after all, they sell them, don’t they?

Continue reading “The Difference Food REALLY Makes to Your Dog…… Separating Truth From Marketing”