Doggy Door: The Perfect Door For Your Pet

Doggy Door 101

Having a doggy door installed in your home can save you a lot of time. It allows your dog to take care of his basic needs without requiring you to open the door each and every time. It also allows your dog to go out and enjoy the yard at will. This means you don’t have to hear him bark or cry each time a bird flies by or a rabbit runs through the lawn. Teaching your dog to use the doggy door is one of the simplest tasks that you will have to train on. Most dogs will get this concept within a couple of tries.

Installing Your Pet Door

Before you can begin training, you must have the doggy door installed. When selecting and installing the doggy door, make sure you measure your dog’s “rise.” This is the amount of room between the floor and the lowest part of your dog’s chest or stomach. Place the bottom of the door an inch or two lower than your dog’s rise to allow for easy access.

For puppies, install the door flush with the ground and then move it upwards as your puppy grows. If this option isn’t feasible, take a guess at your dog’s full-grown size and install the door for your puppy’s estimated adult size. Then install a ramp so your puppy can use the door easily until he grows into it.

Initial Training Preparations

Once you are ready to start doggy door training, open the door for your dog. If there is a flap on the door, like most models, remove it. If you cannot remove it, make sure it is fully open so the opening is not obstructed. This will allow your dog to see that he can come through the doggy door, and help calm any fears he may have. He’ll also be able to see you during training and know that it’s safe to go back and forth.

Training With Your Dog

If your pooch is a little stubborn or afraid of the door, do not force him to go through it. Just sit by the door and hang out for a while. Read a book or surf the internet while you ignore the door. After a while, your dog will go up and sniff the door and check it out and learn that it’s not so scary. After he is used to the door being where it is, then you can begin training.

Next, go outside and call your dog. Have plenty of treats on hand to encourage him to come through the doggy door. After he is outside with you, praise and positive reinforcement will teach him that the door is a good thing. Then go back inside and call your dog again. Repeat this process several times until your dog goes through the door willingly and without coaxing. After your dog is proficient at using the doggy door with no flap, it’s time to put the flap down. Then repeat the training process as you did above. You will do this until your dog understands that it’s okay for him to go through the flap.

Training Tips

Be liberal with your praise (and the treats), but don’t get complacent. Your dog may think the doggy door training is a game, and may be confused or leery of going through the door again when it’s time to go potty. You should watch out for signs that he has to relieve himself so you can remind him that it’s okay to go through the doggy door when he needs to go outside. After your dog gets the hang of things, you can move on to other training.

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Homemade Toys for Feline Fun

Pet owners immediately have toys ready for their new furry family members when they come home. However, cats don’t necessarily need fancy, expensive toys to quell their natural curiosity and need for play. You can transform several simple items into the best homemade toys for cats. Create safe, inexpensive, and creative toys for loads of feline fun.

Before getting started, keep the following in mind:

  • It is important to always supervise your cat during play time. Be sure to remove the toy if it becomes too battered, broken or could pose a hazard.
  • Ensure your cat has ample energy to romp and play by providing a healthy, well-rounded diet. Adding a daily supplement to your feline friend’s diet, like NuVet Plus Feline formula, can enhance your cat’s overall health, energy, and well-being.

The Catnip Sock

First, find an old, clean sock. A thicker sock is ideal because it will last longer. Put a few tablespoons of catnip in the sock and make sure it doesn’t have any holes so nothing leaks out. Tie the top of the sock shut and watch your cat go nuts for the savory sock.

The Toilet Paper Tube

An empty cardboard toilet paper tube on its own may be enough to amuse your kitty. Yet, you can go a step further and make it even more amusing with a few snips of the scissors.

First clean off any leftover paper shards that may be stuck to the cardboard tube. Then cut a series of slits around each side of the tube.

Start with a lengthwise slit about 2-inches long. Continue to cut slits about 1-inch apart around the tube’s outer edge. Repeat this process on the other side of the tube. Finish by folding up the cut edges to create a kind of sunburst pattern on each side of the tube. Place the tube in front of your feline companion and let them give it a go!

The Dried Bean Shaker

A small handful of dried beans, combined with a plastic container, results in the perfect cat toy. The sound the dried beans make in the plastic container provides an enticing noise most cats can’t resist. The dried beans can be of any variety, or even include dried peas. The plastic container can be an empty plastic Easter egg or an empty and thoroughly cleaned vitamin or pill bottle. Place the dried beans in the bottle of choice and give it a shake for your feline friend to hear.

The Empty Box Toys

Whether you just finished off your box of morning cereal or received a package in the mail, empty boxes can be a favorite plaything. Remove any plastic labels or peel-able stickers, put the box on the floor and watch your cat enjoy. That’s it.

No matter what homemade toy you decide to make, remember to keep a keen eye on your cat during playtime. Keep an even keener eye on their health with the addition of pet supplements to their daily diet.

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Walking Your Dog: How To Guide

Walking your dog is an important experience for both you and your pet. Not only does it give your dog the exercise it needs, but it also helps to socialize your dog with new situations and other animals. When you walk your dog, you are bonding with your animal and proving to your dog that you care about their quality of life.

Tips for Walking Your Dog

Walking Your Dog

• Remember that you should be walking in front of your dog. This signifies that you are the leader, and you are the one in control. Allowing your dog to walk beside you or in front of you gives them the advantage, and allows your pet the opportunity to take control.

• Keep your dog on a short leash. This also helps you to maintain control of your pet, and train them properly while you walk along the sidewalk.

• Choose the right time to walk your dog. Your dog will prefer a walk in the morning, as opposed to a late evening walk. Make sure you time the walk accordingly. Your dog should walk for an average of 30 minutes to 60 minutes every day. Remember, this is cardio exercise for you as well, so the benefits are twofold.

• Treat your dog after it behaves well while you are on your walk. This will show your dog that there are rewards for good behavior. You might give them a quick treat, or an ice cube. Whatever you choose, make sure it is something that makes your dog feel special after a job well done. Of course, always hydrate your dog with plenty of water after the exercise session.

Dog-Walking Etiquette

• Understand your dog and your dog’s personality before choosing a place to walk. If your dog does not like other dogs, try to find a more secluded and private place to walk. If your dog is frightened of small children or aggressive towards them, do not head to the local park and playground area.

• Remain vigilant and be aware of your surroundings. You will want to be calm and confident on your walk, as your dog will be able to tap into your feelings. Note if there are other dog walkers in the area who are not in control of their pets. You will want to avoid these situations so as to prevent confrontation or injury.

• If you have to change directions, be sure to do so discreetly and politely. If you notice a family coming with two large dogs and a few unruly kids, and you know that your dog will not handle the situation well, simply turn the corner as if that was your plan all along. You won’t offend the other dog walkers, who might want to stop and chat, and you’ll avoid putting your dog in a situation where it feels insecure or uncomfortable.

• Always ask another dog owner if your dog can introduce itself to their dog. Not every dog wants to be approached by an unknown animal, and it can lead to confrontation or injury. It’s polite to simply ask the other dog owner if your dog can say hello.

• Always pick up after your pet. Your dog might have to take a bathroom break along the way, so be prepared with a baggie and a scoop in order to clean up the mess. You don’t want to encounter another dog’s mess on the sidewalk, so make sure your dog doesn’t leave one behind either.

Benefits of Walking Your Dog

You’ll find that there are many benefits to walking your dog. It well help your dog maintain a healthy weight, as well as display better behavior habits as the regular exercise helps to burn off excess energy. However, you need to train your dog to walk well before you start these exercise sessions and also understand the rules of the sidewalk when it comes to dog walking.

Remember to utilize this time as special bonding time for you and your four-legged friend. Don’t spend the walk texting or talking on the phone. Avoid putting your MP3 player headphones into your ear. Instead, enjoy this special time with your pet and socialize with other dog owners who are doing the same.

Adding a nutritional supplement to your canine friend’s diet will also benefit their health and quality of life. Learn how the unique ingredients in the NuVet Plus immune system builder support optimal pet health by visiting the NuVet YouTube channel.

For more interesting articles about your canine and feline friend, check out the NuVet Labs blog.