Monday, October 15, 2018

Disaster Preparedness- the Moment the World Turns Upside Down

Are you prepared with your pets and family for the moment of Disaster?

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With hurricanes, floods and fires ravaging the countrysides of both the USA and UK, plus Indonesia and other parts of the world having their share of  weather related events. Its a good time to look at what your family would do in the event of a local disaster.

Disasters come in may forms and are suddenly are upon us or they would not be called disasters.

Most of these events are not in our human control but in Mother Nature's hands. In that moment when disasters hit, we humans have no choice but to attempt to survive. Pray and hold on, run and pray some more or hunker down praying. Each person and pet will do the best they can at that moment.

In that moment, no matter how much forecasters and weather stations have warned us to be ready we really do not know what will happen or what to be ready for until the event is over. Usually within a short time, maybe a few hours or in the daylight when the sun comes will we be able to see what is left in the neighborhood or town we live in. Destruction or a normal day.  

Many storms, tornadoes, fires and floods occur at night often waking people from sleep to find out they have lost the lights or electric. Stumbling around in the dark is no fun when danger is on the doorstep. That is the moment we need to prepare for. 

Evacuation is the last resort to get out of the way and when the authorities announce that it is time to evacuation they mean a serious life changing moment is heading your way and move it..Now ! 

Move over out of the way or get hit full force. 

When we chose not to evacuate we are choosing to face the moment of impact, just like letting somebody punch us in the face with our hands tied behind our back because we cannot fight Mother Nature. We cannot punch a tornado or stand up to a hurricane and the best thing to do is duck the punch. Sidestep and get out of the way.

Ready to go with our belongings copyright A.Higgins

What will you do? 

Leave us a comment and share your plan for that moment when the world turns upside down and the lights go out. Somebody may learn something from you that can save a life. 

If you would not evacuate, why not?

Read more about what you can do click the page links below for more articles from Family Disaster Dogs.

See the list of survival supplies a family and pets need to evacuate and live for three days waiting for help to arrive if your home is destroyed.

Learn how your pet dogs can find you and friends or family members who are missing after disasters or wandered from home.  

Emergency Links to Organizations and site about preparing and the aftermath.

Books Recommended Reading

Teach you dog to fetch items by name, find the car keys, bring the first aid kit and get water bottle if you are hurt !

Free lessons show you what to do and to teach your dogs what to do to help you in disasters


Available as a eBook too

A.Higgins copyright

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Unhealthy, But Happy: Making The Most Of Quality Time Together When Your Dog Is Very Old

As their health deteriorates, we will naturally want to spend more time with our dog as they get older. But as time goes on, the idea of what can constitute as quality time can be quite a head-scratcher. We need to find good ways to spend time with our dog, and in some respects, we can overthink it, but how can we ensure that they are getting the best from us?

If They Want To Sleep…

Let them sleep! They are going to spend more time sleeping now than they were years ago, so make it a bit more comfortable for them. Give them some extra blankets to lie on, or give them a space on the couch. It's at this point where the rules of them staying off the couch might not apply, especially if you want to give them your all.
Helping Them Walk

Yes, they will still want to go for walks, but it will be few and far between. As they get older, their mobility will naturally decrease because of stiff joints, but they will still want to accompany us wherever we go. In which case, do your best to help them get up or down stairs, or if you want to take them out for a walk, make sure it's on terrain that isn't too difficult for them.
Getting Them Outside

They will want to stay active, and there are going to be parts of their body that will not do what they want. As they get older, their bladder will be quite weak, but you can purchase a dog belly wrap to help with this so that they can get outside a bit more. And if you were used to going out for hours on end, playing Frisbee, or hiking up and down mountains, you need to pull this back and make sure the time outside is nice and active, but not overly so. Ultimately, the more active they are, the better they will feel, but there has to be a limit.
Getting More Home Comforts

They will be more sensitive to the changes in the seasons, and we have to be ready to adapt to these changes. Keeping some home comforts to hand will ensure that they are a bit happier despite their failing body. They are going to be more sensitive, not just in terms of their body, but their mind also, so think about the home comforts that they usually like, and get a few more ready!
Providing Extra Nutrition

In their senior years, they will need more in their diet to keep the feeling healthy. Not only will they need different types of nutrients, but they will also need an adequate amount of calories. Fluctuations in weight are very common for dogs in old age, and it can be a struggle to find the right balance. 

Ensuring that they have adequate supplements is something you need to provide for them at the very least, but you may want to think about other approaches to ensure they have healthier functions, such as the gut. 

A lot of dog owners give their dog kefir grains, as the good bacteria benefits their gut in many ways, but be careful not to overdo this, and ensure that their stomach can take this influx of good bacteria. On the other hand, bone broth has been shown to be a great way to improve digestive health as it is very light on the stomach and provides many nutrients.

Taking Those Opportunities To Bond

Even if it's not like it used to be, you can still bond over old activities. Even if they don't get out much, something as basic as grooming time is your opportunity to bond with them. It's the two of you, together, and it's a very simple way to show them how much you care.
Take Each Day As It Comes

It can be very upsetting when your dog isn't able to move around as they once did, and they may not want to do anything anymore, but you need to judge each day on its own merit. As long as you are keeping them as healthy as possible, and you are doing everything in your power to ensure they are comfortable, then there's no telling how they will be tomorrow. They may be sprightly and full of energy, but they might not, and this is something you have to take on a day by day basis.
Keeping Your Medical Knowledge Up-To-Date

Something as simple as keeping in touch with the vets during this difficult time will make sure that you are doing everything you can for them. Old age is one of those things that happen to each and every one of us, and while your vet will tell you that they need to be comfortable and healthy, it doesn't hurt to know the signs and symptoms of a certain illness, so you can act quickly if there is an emergency.
Have Some Fun!

You may feel sad, and understandably so, but you have a lifetime of memories together, and they wouldn't want you to be sad for them, and instead of dreading the worst, give yourself the opportunity to relive some old times. They need you more now than ever, but you can still do the things that you used to do, albeit with a little more care and attention. Enjoy some fun time together, and talk to them. 

They don't want to feel scared or upset, and this is why you should spend quality time with each other. It can be incredibly heartbreaking to see your dog give into old age, and while everyone will say it's a part of life, it can hurt. But it's not helpful at this point in time to dwell on the negative aspects, because they may still have a lot of life in them yet, and it's your responsibility to make the most of their twilight years, and you can still make new memories. 

Your dog is your best friend, so treat them accordingly, and make the most of your quality time together.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Why Does A Dog Bite?

There are a lot of scary stories about dogs attacking people these days. But the reality is that dog bites are a lot more common than you might think - it’s just the serious, terrible, and disastrous incidents we hear or read about in the news. In fact, there are over 4.5 million dog bites that occur every year, most of which are mild accidents - and almost all of them can be avoided.

The key to understanding how not to get bitten is to learn why dogs bite. Having covered what to do to avoid and deal with a bite from a dog, we thought it was time to explore the reasons why it happens so much. Let’s take a closer look.

Why do dogs bite?

The first thing to understand is that any dog can bite. Sure, there are aggressive strains and personalities out there in the world, but even a timid dog will snap at you in fear if you close off their escape route. Big, small, male, female, young, old, cuddly, scary: any dog will try to protect themselves the best way they know how when they find themselves in a stressful situation.

‘Stressful’ is the key word to understand, here. Almost every dog bite will occur as a reaction to something - they don’t just do it for the sake of it. It could be to protect something, or to ward you off from its territory. It might be because they feel threatened - or even that someone or something is threatening you. They can even bite when they feel unwell and just want to be left alone. But the key thing to remember is that in almost every scenario, it’s because your dog is stressed.

Understanding the issue

The trouble is that too few owners understand the signs that their dog is stressed. And unless you learn those signs yourself - as a dog owner or otherwise - it could spell trouble. For example, if you have a small child who loves pooches and sees one on the street, can you be sure that the dog they go up to and try and stroke isn’t afraid? And can you guarantee they will not bite? Educating yourself and your kids on how to approach - or not - any animal is wise.

That said, if you do ever receive a bite from someone else’s dog, it is the owner’s fault. Contact a lawyer to file a claim for canine bites and make sure you get the relevant medical attention - every owner has a responsibility to look after their animals. And if you know your dog is stressed, make sure you have full control over them and let the approaching party know to keep a good distance away.

What about play?

In their natural environment, dogs will play with other dogs - and they tend to nip at each other for fun. The trouble is that they nip and bite during play with humans, too. And while it’s fun for them, it’s dangerous for you - and especially for your kids.

You can avoid getting bitten by not wrestling with them, or playing tug-of-war. Ultimately, these are games that will overexcited your dog and accidents are more likely to occur.

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