Category: Husky Health

Can Dogs Eat Cheese? What Types Are Healthiest?

Can Dogs Eat Cheese?

Many dog owners are guilty of sharing ‘human food’ with their beloved pet. There isn’t anything inherently wrong with this but you should know that there are certain foods that dogs should never eat and then there are some that it’s okay to share. A popular food with humans is cheese because it comes in all different sizes and flavors so it’s likely that our pets will get a taste eventually.

In this article I’ll answer the question of can dogs eat cheese, what kinds of cheeses are best to feed them, the issue of lactose intolerance in dogs, and some possible side effects of feeding your dog cheese.

Can Dogs Eat Cheese?

The simple answer to the question of can dogs eat cheese is yes they can. However, as with many things in life, the answer is slightly Can Dogs Eat Cheese?more nuanced than that.

Cheese contains calcium, protein, vitamin A, and vitamin B which can be a good addition to your pup’s diet. Some people even use cheese as a way to get their dog to take medication they wouldn’t otherwise eat. Since cheese is often high in calories it’s important to feed it in moderation as it’s easy to overdo it.

Some dogs are lactose intolerant and shouldn’t be fed cheese though. Dogs that suffer from pancreatitis should also not be given cheese because of its high fat content. Even those dogs that don’t suffer from these conditions shouldn’t be fed more than 10% of their daily diet in cheese or any other snack for that matter.

What Kinds of Cheese Can I Feed My Dog?

All cheese should be given to your pet in moderation, but there are certain cheeses that are better than others. Low fat cheeses like mozzarella and cottage cheese are the best, but you can also safely feed them cheddar, cream cheese, swiss, and goat cheese.

Can Dogs Eat Cheese? Cottage Cheese Lactose IntolerantIt’s always best to feed whole versions of these cheeses. That is, avoid any cheeses that have additional ingredients such as garlic, onions, macadamia nuts, avocado, grapes, or raisins. Try to avoid cheeses with high fat or sodium content as these can cause weight gain from the fat or dehydration and vomiting from the sodium.

Lactose Intolerance in Dogs

There are a number of dogs that are lactose intolerant which means their body is unable to process lactose, a sugar found in milk. The severity of this condition can vary from dog to dog so it’s best to start by feeding your pet a little bit of cheese at a time to see how they react to it.

If their system can’t handle it you’ll know pretty soon after feeding because they may display an allergic reaction, upset stomach, diarrhea, severe gas, or bloating. Again, it’s best to start with a small amount of cheese when feeding it to them for the first time.

Possible Side Effects from Feeding Cheese to Your Dog

Cheese, while edible to most dogs, can come with side effects if you feed too much of it at once. These include diarrhea and Can Dogs Eat Cheese?constipation at first and can lead to obesity and gastrointestinal issues if fed too much over a long period of time.

Obesity in dogs is a steadily growing problem and many cheeses come with a high calorie content so it’s best to monitor your dog’s consumption of cheese and, again, give them no more than 10% of their daily caloric intake via this food.

Yes, Most Likely You Can Feed Your Dog Some Cheese

Now you know that most dogs can tolerate moderate amounts of cheese in their diets as long as they are not lactose intolerant or suffer from pancreatitis. You also know that mozzarella and cottage cheese are the best ones to feed your pup, what it means for a dog to be lactose intolerant, and some possible side effects of feeding your pup too much cheese.

For more information check out what the American Kennel Club has to say about dogs eating cheese and check out my articles on what foods it’s okay to feed your dog and what foods it’s not okay to feed your dog.

If you have any questions about feeding your dog cheese or any other food please feel free to leave me a comment below! What kind of cheese is your pet’s favorite, if any?

 

 

 

 

How to Clean a Dog’s Teeth – Tips for Husky Dental Care

How to Clean a Dog's Teeth - Tips for Husky Dental Care

Many people are surprised to learn that ideally they should be brushing their husky’s teeth every day or at least once a week. Dogs in the wild brush their teeth naturally by eating a raw diet devoid of refined sugar and flavored drinks. They also don’t live as long as domesticated animals so their teeth don’t have to last as long as the typical domesticated husky’s life cycle.

Our pets are often exposed to a diet that breeds plaque and tartar if not taken care of though so it’s important to start brushing your dog’s teeth as early as possible. In this article on how to clean a dog’s teeth I will be discussing what supplies you’ll need, how to brush your dog’s teeth, signs to watch out for, and some ways to supplement a good oral hygiene routine.

Supplies You’ll NeedHow to Clean a Dog's Teeth - Tips for Husky Dental Care - Soft Bristled Tooth Brush

When bringing home a new dog there are certain supplies you’ll want to make sure you have. You can get by with a small tooth brush and some doggie toothpaste, but here are a few other things you might think of getting specifically for your new husky’s oral hygiene.

  • Soft-bristled toothbrush with long handle (alternatively a finger brush or cotton swabs)
  • Doggie toothpaste (never use human toothpaste as it may contain fluoride or xylitol)
  • Gauze (a washcloth also works)
  • Dental Toys
  • Dental Chews

How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth

Working with your husky from an early age will make brushing their teeth much easier but a dog at any age can be taught to allow having their teeth brushed on a regular basis. Some dogs can even be taught to brush their teeth by chewing on a toothbrush. For everyone else, however, here is a step-by-step breakdown of how to brush your dog’s teeth.

  1. Choose an appropriate time. You’ll want your dog to be in a relaxed state when you start working with them so ideally after a walk or some strenuous activity that will use up a lot of their energy is best.
  2. First get them used to having their mouth played with. Practice getting your dog to let you put your fingers in their mouth by first gently massaging their face with your hands. This can take multiple sessions depending on how resistant your husky is. How to Clean a Dog's Teeth - Tips for Husky Dental Care - Husky Teeth
  3. Next, use two fingers wrapped in gauze or a washcloth to gently scrub at their teeth and gums. Again, this can take multiple sessions if your dog is resistant to it. Stop and try again later if your dog becomes agitated at any point.
  4. Once your dog is comfortable with this, you can begin using a toothbrush (or fingerbrush) and dog toothpaste to gently brush their teeth and gums. Dampen the brush, lift your dog’s lip on one side and brush the teeth and gums at a 45 degree angle in a gentle, circular motion for the best results. Start by getting them used to brushing the front teeth in short two minute sessions (or even less if your dog is resistant or becomes agitated). Eventually you’ll be able to get to the back of their mouth to reach those back upper molars and canines which are most prone to tartar buildup. If you can brush the inside surface of their teeth great but as long as you’re getting the outer side of each tooth this is sufficient.
  5. After every session be sure to reward your husky with a treat or extra attention. Rewarding good behavior and creating the positive reinforcement that teeth brushing sessions come with good things will help immensely. This is especially important during steps 2 and 3 when you’re getting your dog used to having their mouth played with.
  6. In between teeth brushing sessions give your dog dental chews and dental toys. These are products specifically designed to brush your dog’s teeth as they chew and are a great supplement to a good oral hygiene routine. We try to brush Aura’s teeth at least once a week and give her one dental chew each day. I recommend Nylabone’s Dental Chew Treats but other brands like Greenie’s are also available.

Signs to Watchout For

Even if you don’t brush your husky’s teeth it is important to look inside their mouth on a weekly basis to watch out for bad breath, missing or misaligned teeth, discolored or broken teeth, swollen or painful bleeding gums, tartar buildup along the gums, and any bumps or other abnormalities in the mouth.

If you notice any of these signs see your local veterinarian as soon as possible. These are all indications of periodontal disease which can lead to bacteria growing inside your pet’s mouth, eventually resulting in further health complications in the heart, kidneys, and liver!

Supplementing a Good Oral Hygiene Routine

On top of brushing your dog’s teeth there are a number of products out there designed to supplement a good oral hygiene routine. Below is a list of a few different options.

  • Tooth Wipes – If you’re having trouble getting your dog to let you brush their teeth with a toothbrush there are companies that produce ‘tooth wipes’ which may be good if you can at least get your fingers in their mouth. While not as great as brushing, it’s better than nothing.
  • Dental Chew Toys – These toys are specifically designed with little crevices and brushes to brush your dog’s teeth as How to Clean a Dog's Teeth - Tips for Husky Dental Care - Nylabone Natural Nutri Dent Dental Chewsthey chew on them.
  • Dry Food VS Soft Food – Dry kibble is better for your dog’s oral hygiene than soft food which more easily sticks to your pet’s teeth. There are even specially formulated dry kibbles that are made to brush your dog’s teeth as they crunch down on it.
  • Natural Dental Sprays – These products are made to be sprayed directly onto your dog’s teeth to reduce tartar and plaque buildup and leave their breath smelling fresh.
  • Coconut Oil – With natural antimicrobial properties, coconut oil has a flavor sure to attract most dogs. One popular way to use coconut oil is to drill holes in a carrot, dribble coconut oil into them, and then freeze the carrot for a few minutes before serving to your dog.
  • Raw Bones – Choosing an appropriate size raw bone for your dog will naturally brush their teeth as they chew. Beware of cooked bones which can splinter and become stuck in your dog’s digestive system.
  • Water Additives – If your dog doesn’t mind the taste of them special additives can be added to their water which will cut down on bacteria and keep their breath smelling fresh.
  • Professional Cleanings – Veterinarians have special training and experience when it comes to identifying, preventing, and treating oral issues in your dog. You should have your dog’s teeth professionally cleaned at least once a year. Many times a vet will look for symptoms during a checkup but if not be sure to specifically request this service.

Conclusion

How to Clean a Dog's Teeth - Aura's TeethBy now you should have basic knowledge on what products you’ll need to clean your dog’s teeth, how to brush their teeth, some warning signs to be on the lookout for, and about the many products available to supplement a pup’s good oral hygiene routine.

In a perfect world you should be brushing your dog’s teeth every day but more realistically once a week if you can get them used to it. At the very least you now know about some products such as dental chews or dental sprays which can be used to help prevent periodontal disease in your husky. For further reading checkout these resources from The American Kennel Club, WebMD, Banfield Pet Hospital, and Cesar’s Way.

If you have any questions or are having a hard time getting your husky used to having their teeth brushed let me know in the comments below and I’ll do my best to help!

 

 

 

 

10 Human Foods Dogs Can Eat – What Can Dogs Eat?

10 Human Foods Dogs Can Eat - What Can Dogs Eat?

One of the many ways we show our dogs we love them is by sharing delicious foods. Many people will give their dog dinner scraps and other foods. However, dogs digest and metabolize food differently from humans and because of this there are certain foods that are safe for humans but poisonous to dogs.

While there are foods that you should never feed your dog there are others that both humans and their pets can enjoy equally. So this begs the question, what can dogs eat then? Below you’ll find 10 human foods dogs can eat as well.

1. Apple SlicesApple Slices 10 Human Foods Dogs Can Eat

Apples are a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber. Be sure to cut them into appropriate sized pieces for your dog and avoid giving them any seeds as these contain small traces of cyanide believe it or not. Try freezing the apple slices for an ice cream like dessert for your pup.

2. Carrots

Cooked or raw, carrots are a great low calorie food to feed your husky. They are great for your dog’s teeth and are high in fiber and vitamin A. Be sure to cut the carrots into smaller pieces or feed them baby carrots if they have a small mouth.

3. Cheese

While in most cases dairy products should be avoided, cheese is one exception to the rule as long as your dog isn’t extremely lactose intolerant. Low fat cheeses like mozzarella and cottage cheese are best and should be given in small doses, especially at first, to see if your dog has any negative reactions to it. If they can handle it cheese is a great source of calcium and protein.

4. Eggs

Eggs 10 Human Foods Dogs Can EatEggs are a great source of protein for your husky. Cooking up some scrambled eggs is a great way to get them a good dose of riboflavin and selenium.

5. Green Beans

Again cooked or raw green beans are a great low calorie, high nutrient food to give your dog. They’re also a great source of vitamin C and K.

6. Lean Meats (Chicken, Turkey, & Beef)

Cooked chicken, turkey, or beef are great safe, healthy options that are great for an added boost of protein in your pup’s diet. Be sure not to use any seasonings and to remove any bones which may splinter and get lodged in your dog’s digestive track. Cooked is preferable to avoid any food borne illnesses such as salmonella. Chicken and rice is a great recipe my mom used to use whenever our dogs would get upset stomachs.

7. Oatmeal

Cooked oatmeal is a great treat to give your dog as it is packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Be sure to avoid any flavored oatmeal as they often contain unhealthy sugar which could upset your dog’s stomach.

8. Peanut ButterPeanut Butter 10 Human Foods Dogs Can Eat

Plain, unsalted, and made from unroasted peanuts peanut butter is a dog favorite. Peanut butter and peanuts are a great source of healthy fats, vitamin B, vitamin E, protein, and niacin (vitamin B3). Putting some peanut butter in a Kong toy can keep some dogs busy for hours. Be sure not to give them too much though as this can result in unhealthy weight gain.

9. Salmon

Salmon, cooked and boneless, is loaded up with protein, vitamins, and iron. It’s also a great source of omega-3 acids that will keep your husky’s skin and coat healthy.

10. Yogurt

Yogurt 10 Human Foods Dogs Can EatFull of protein, calcium, and helpful digestive cultures, plain yogurt is a great option to share with your dog. Be sure that it is plain yogurt without any added sugar or artificial sweeteners like xylitol. Start with a little at first as some dogs can be lactose intolerant and have a negative reaction to any yogurt.

Additional Resources

There you have it, my top 10 ‘human’ foods dogs can eat! It’s important to remember you should introduce new things into your dog’s diet very slowly as their digestive system is much more fragile than ours. If you’re looking for additional snacks to feed your pooch check out my articles on store-bought treats as well as some recipes to make at home.

For further reading on human foods dogs can and can’t eat check out these resources from the American Kennel Club and Cesar’s Way.

This is by no means a complete list of foods that are safe for dogs to eat. What are some of your pet’s favorite safe foods to chomp on? Feel free to share in the comments below!

 

 

 

Foods That Dogs Should Not Eat Under Any Circumstance

Siberian Husky Face

As dog parents we only want the best for our pets and for them to know that they are loved. There are many ways to show our dogs we love them and one of the most popular methods comes in the form of sharing delicious treats. Usually we will feed them with dog treats we purchased from a store or that we have made ourselves especially for them.

Other times, because they’re so adorable, some of us may give them a little bit of ‘people food’ to mark special occasions or reward good behavior, or because they guilt us into sharing with those sad puppy dog eyes. While there are plenty of foods that are okay to feed our dogs in small doses there are certain foods that dogs should not eat under any circumstance.

Below is a list of the top 13 ‘people food’ items you should never let your dog eat and what to do if they get into something they shouldn’t have.

1. AlcoholAlcohol

Alcohol has the same effects on dogs that it does on humans. However, because they are smaller, alcohol will hit a dog much faster and in much smaller doses. Alcohol poisoning is a serious threat to the health of your dog and can result in the need for immediate medical intervention. Be on the lookout for symptoms such as decreased coordination, diarrhea, vomiting, and central nervous system depression which can lead to coma and even death.

2. Avocado

Avocados are a popular food item for people but can have deadly consequences if ingested by a dog. Avocados contain a fungicidal toxin called persin which is poisonous to dogs causing diarrhea and vomiting. Additionally, the sizable seed in the middle is a choking hazard. If a dog is able to swallow the seed without choking it can then become lodged in their stomach or intestines.

3. Candy / Gum

Licorice and other candies that are high in sugar can affect dogs similarly to humans as well. Too much sugar can cause weight gain and tooth decay in dogs and may even lead to diabetes.

Meanwhile many sugar free gums and candies use an artificial sweetener called xylitol which is highly poisonous to dogs. Ingesting even a small amount can cause a drop in blood sugar and lead to liver failure. Early warning signs include lethargy, decrease in coordination, vomiting, and even seizures.

4. Chocolate

ChocolateMost people are aware that chocolate is a big no-no for dogs. Dark chocolate and unsweetened baker’s chocolate are the worst because they contain the highest concentrations of caffeine and other methylxanthines.

Methylxanthines are a chemical compound that can cause abnormal heart rhythm, hyperactivity, excessive thirst and urination, seizures, tremors, diarrhea, vomiting, and even death in dogs.

5. Citrus Fruit

Avoid letting your dog eat any citrus fruit such as oranges, lemons, and limes because the citric acid can lead to an upset stomach even in smaller doses. The more of it they eat the more potent the effect and it can even lead to central nervous system depression if they eat too much.

6. Coffee / Caffeine

Coffee beans can be very enticing to a dog but those and anything else that contains caffeine are no good for your dog for the same reason chocolate isn’t; they contain methylxanthines.

7. Grapes / Raisins

Eating grapes can lead to kidney failure in dogs and raisins are even worse. Be sure to watch out for things like fruit salads Grapeswhich may contain grapes or raisins as one of the ingredients. Early signs that a dog has eaten too many grapes are lethargy, vomiting, and depression.

8. Milk & Other Dairy Products

Most dogs are lactose-intolerant which means their body is unable to efficiently break down lactose, a sugar found in milk and dairy products. For most huskies consuming too much dairy can lead to an upset stomach, diarrhea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal issues.

9. Nuts

Many types of nuts including walnuts, almonds, and pecans are not good for dogs because they contain a high concentration of fats and oils. A dog that ingests enough may experience diarrhea, vomiting, and even pancreatitis. Macadamia nuts are especially dangerous and sometimes lethal for huskies resulting in vomiting, lethargy, depression, and hyperthermia (increase in body temperature).

10. Onions & Garlic

Onions & GarlicOnions, garlic, and chives can all cause serious gastrointestinal issues if ingested by your dog. Eating enough of them can cause permanent damage to red blood cells resulting in a condition known as anemia.

 

 

11. Rhubarb

Rhubarb, a fruit like vegetable, can cause a number of different ailments if ingested by dogs. These include diarrhea, vomiting, drooling, tremors, bloody urine, and even kidney failure.

12. Salt

Snack foods like chips or pretzels that have a high salt content are not good to feed your husky. If too much salt is ingested Salt Pretzelsit can lead to sodium ion poisoning. The symptoms include excessive urination, excessive thirst, diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, depression, hyperthermia, seizures, and even death.

13. Yeast Dough

If your dog ingests even a little bit of yeast dough it can cause life threatening problems. The dough in their stomach will begin to expand causing discomfort and bloating. If severe enough it can even rupture their stomach or intestines. Additionally, yeast produces ethanol as a byproduct which can result in alcohol poisoning in the poor pooch.

If Your Husky Eats Something They Shouldn’t Have

Now you know some of the top foods that dogs should not eat under any circumstance, but accidents do happen and dogs get into things they shouldn’t all the time.

If you even suspect that your dog has gotten into one of these foods or anything else that could be potentially poisonous remain calm and contact your veterinarian or the closest animal emergency clinic immediately. If this isn’t possible you should contact the official ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435 for assistance.

For additional reading check out these resources from the ASPCA and the American Kennel Club.

 

 

Alaskan Husky VS Siberian Husky – What’s the Difference?

Siberian Husky VS Alaskan Husky

While learning about huskies I discovered that there are two major breeds, Alaskan Huskies and Siberian Huskies. At first, I thought the obvious difference is that one breed hails from Alaska and the other Siberia. This is true, however there are a few other things that differentiate these two.

Husky History

Siberian Huskies, like our husky Aura, are a purebred dog that was domesticated by the Chukchi people and developed as working dogs to help them survive the unforgiving climate of Siberia. The Siberian husky is part of the ‘spitz‘ family and has been officially recognized by The American Kennel Club since 1932.

Alaskan Huskies started popping up in 1909 when the first Siberian huskies were brought to Alaska as racing dogs. To make the Siberian husky more effective at pulling sleds they were bred with other working dogs like German Shepards and Border Collies. This resulted in the birth of Alaskan Huskies which are basically mixed dogs and are not recognized by The American Kennel Club as a breed.

Physical Attributes of Alaskan VS Siberian Huskies

Because Alaskan Huskies are mixes they can vary quite greatly in appearance from dog to dog. That being said generally Black Husky with Heterochromiamales will be around 40 to 60 lbs and females around 35 to 55 lbs. They are medium, sometimes large, sized dogs and can get up to 26 inches tall. They tend to have lean bodies with long, slender legs. Their fur coats come in a variety of different colors based on what they’re mixed with and predominantly have brown eyes. They are usually taller and faster than Siberian huskies, making them even better sled dogs.

Since they are purebred, there is usually more consistency in the physical appearance of Siberian huskies. Males tend to be around 45 to 60 lbs with the females coming in between 35 and 50 lbs. They are generally a medium-sized dog, about 18 to 24 inches tall. Most Siberian huskies have a black and white coat but there are also white, gray, and red huskies as well. Usually they will have brown or blue eyes but some have heterochromia which means that one eye is a different color than the other. Our husky Aura has a matching set of beautiful blue eyes.

Both dogs sport a two layer coat that keeps warmth in during frigid weather and reflects heat when it is sunny. It’s hard to believe but Aura loves to go out sunbathing in the backyard here in Phoenix Arizona where temperatures often break 100 degrees Fahrenheit!

Behavior of Alaskan VS Siberian Huskies

In terms of behavior Alaskan and Siberian huskies are both very similar. They’re generally very friendly dogs and love belonging to a pack. Since Alaskan huskies are mixed with other breeds they tend to be slightly less hyper than Siberian huskies. Our husky Aura is full Siberian but lacks the relentless energy of most dogs her breed. White Alaskan Husky Standing

Huskies are known to love exploring and will easily get lost if you don’t keep them on a leash. Digging is another favorite hobby of theirs and they will dig up your yard for fun or to escape the confines of their enclosure. They are very intelligent creatures so it’s important to train them from a young age to reinforce good behavior.

Huskies tend not to bark but instead howl in unique and often amusing ways. These dogs are known for being very loud and talkative and there are plenty videos on the web that showcase this trait of theirs. One thing of important note with these dogs is that they have a predator’s instinct and will chase down and kill small animals without thinking twice. It’s important to introduce them to smaller pets in a safe and controlled environment.

The Simplest Explanation of Alaskan VS Siberian Huskies

Hopefully by now you understand a little more about the minor differences between Alaskan and Siberian huskies. The simplest explanation is that Siberian Huskies are a purebred breed recognized by the American Kennel Club and Alaskan Huskies are husky mixes that were bred to make more efficient sled dogs.

There is also a breed of dog called the Alaskan Malamute that are often mistaken as huskies and vice versa. While Alaskan Huskies and Siberian Huskies are basically the same breed they are separate from malamutes despite the resemblance. For more information check out this article by siberianhusky.com.

Between the Alaskan Husky, Siberian Husky, and Alaskan Malamute do you have a favorite? Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

 

 

Easy Homemade Dog Treat Recipes For Healthy Dogs

Hand feeding husky easy homemade dog treats

For most dogs using treats during training is key to being successful. Nothing quite motivates our husky Aura quite like a delicious treat does!

We’ve already covered the best healthy dog treats that can be purchased in stores. However, even the best store bought dog treats come with risk of contaminants. To avoid this and possibly cut down on our dog treat budget I started looking into easy homemade dog treat recipes.

First we’ll discuss the issues with store-bought treats, then the advantages of homemade dog treats, and finally we will go over a few great healthy recipes for you to try out.

The Problem With Purchasing Treats

The biggest problem with purchasing store-bought treats is that many treats are made to be marketed to humans and don’t take a dog’s diet into consideration. There are countless products that use chemical preservatives and dyes which are not good for long term consumption by your pet. The preservatives make the treats last longer but could make your dog sick. The cost of store bought dog treats adds up quickly.Your dog doesn’t care what color their treats are, just that they taste good, so adding dyes is pointless and potentially harmful.

Additionally, because these products are marketed towards humans for they have a markup in their price tags which can add up really quickly depending on how fast your dog goes through treats.

Just like humans dogs can become overweight very easily if their diet is filled with sugar and empty carbs which is what many store bought dog treats are packed with. If you are going to purchase dog treats from a store consider going with one of our recommendations.

The Advantages of Homemade Dog Treats

There are so many advantages to making dog treats at home. The best and most obvious one is that you can control exactly what is going into your pet’s body.

You not only avoid any toxic chemicals making their way into your pet’s snacks by mistake, but you can control how healthy they are as well. No more added sugar! With a more healthy snack for your pet, achieved through healthy ingredients and portion control, you can feed them more of it and possibly extend training sessions.

Making treats yourself is also much more cost effective than purchasing pre-made treats. You’ll often get more out of your batches as well. With the money you’ll save you can afford to purchase more high end ingredients for additional homemade dog treats.

Making treats at home for your pup is also another great way to show your love for them! Let your pup hang out with you and lick up unused ingredients to make it a great bonding experience. Plus unlike people your dog is always going to love your cooking.

Healthy Recipe Ideas

Here is a list of healthy homemade dog treat recipes.

The Secret Ingredient

Hopefully by now you understand that store bought dog treats come with convenience and the possibility of being contaminated with harmful chemicals and ingredients. By sourcing your own high quality ingredients you can make healthier, tastier options for your favorite canine friend to enjoy without fear of obesity or getting sick. Be sure to keep in mind that treats should make up no more than 10% of your dog’s diet with the rest coming from other sources like kibble.

The only downside to homemade treats are that they often don’t last as long as the store bought treats. You can make them last as long as possible by sealing them in an airtight container and leaving in the freezer for storage.

If you try one of these recipes you’ll need a secret ingredient, love. The fact that you have found yourself here indicates that you already have plenty of that for your dog so this shouldn’t be a problem at all.

Is there a healthy recipe that your dog loves but isn’t here on our recommendations? Leave us a comment and let me know about it. If you try one of these recipes be sure to let us know how your experience was and if your pooch loved the things you made!

 

 

 

 

Best Healthy Dog Treats to Feed Your Husky

Dog Treats to Avoid

One of the best ways to train your dog is to use treats to reward and reinforce good behavior. However, with so many products on the market it can be overwhelming for a new (or even veteran) dog owner looking to purchase treats and other new dog essentials.

The documentary ‘Pet Fooled‘ caused me to take a closer look at the dog treats we feed our husky Aura. So I’ve done the research and found some of the best healthy dog treats to feed your husky.

What Makes a Treat ‘Healthy’?

First off, treats should only make up approximately 10% of your dog’s diet, the rest being kibble or another source. Being able to break a treat into smaller pieces will give you plenty of training treats without spoiling your husky’s dinner! Whole Unprocessed Ingredients in Healthy Dog Treats

Many of the same factors that make ‘human food’ healthy also apply to pet foods and treats as well. Ideally we want to find whole, unprocessed ingredients that are sourced as close to the manufacturer as possible. Organic ingredients are less likely to contain contaminants but do cost more.

For the most part we want to avoid preservatives and dyes in our dog treats. If there are preservatives they should be natural ones such as vitamin C and vitamin E. We also want to avoid treats with packaging that doesn’t provide calorie intake information.

Ingredients to Watch Out For

Here is a list of ingredients to steer clear of when selecting your dog treats.

  • Artificial preservatives like BHA and BHT.
  • Artificial colors which are unnecessarily added.
  • Added sweeteners such as sugar and corn syrup.
  • Chemical humectants like propylene glycol, used to lock in moisture.
  • Byproducts or ‘meat meal’ which is everything deemed unfit for human consumption.

You should also be aware that dogs can be allergic to certain ingredients just like a human can. One report found beef and dairy products to be the top two allergens among canines. If you suspect your dog of being allergic to something take them to your veterinarian as soon as possible to have an allergy test performed.

The Best Healthy Dog Treat Recommendations

Here is a list of the best recommendations for healthy dog treats.Newman's Own Premium Dog Treats Turkey & Sweet Potato Flavor

Dog Treats to Avoid

Here is a list of some popular dog treats that should be avoided at all cost.

Protect Your Dog From Obesity and Contaminants

Events like the 2007 Pet Food Recalls show that the best way to make sure nothing poisonous is getting into your dog’s treats is to make them at home. This way you can moderate exactly what ingredients are going into your pet’s snacks.

Aura the Husky

Obesity is an increasingly bigger issue among pets in the United States so be sure to remember that treats should make up no more than 10% of your dog’s total diet. Consider feeding them dinner after training time because this way you can simply feed them less to account for any excessive snacking during the training session.

Is your favorite healthy dog treat not listed in our recommendations? Leave a comment below and let us know what healthy snacks you’re feeding your pet!

 

 

 

 

Siberian Husky Life Expectancy, The Siberian Husky Life Cycle

Siberian Husky Life Expectancy

It’s a depressing topic but knowing the siberian husky life expectancy is an important thing to take into consideration when thinking about adopting one of these majestic creatures. They aren’t puppies forever and you should be aiming to provide a forever home, not just a home until they outgrow you! Luckily we got Aura when she was about one and a half years old and should have many years to come with her in our lives.

Once again I’ve done some research and have assembled the best information on the siberian husky life cycle.

How Long Does a Husky Typically Live?

You can usually count on a healthy Siberian Husky to live approximately 12 to 15 years. Keep in mind this is under ideal conditions where the dog gets plenty of How long does a husky typically live?exercise and a nutritious diet. Additionally, female dogs tend to outlive males by a small margin.

Siberian Husky Life Cycle

Typically from 0 to 12 months of age a husky is considered to be a puppy. When they reach about 1 year old most huskies are about as big as they are going to get and are considered an adult dog. This adult stage lasts until the dog is about 7 years old at which point they are considered to be a senior dog. As a senior you can expect your dog’s energy level to decline and they could potentially develop health issues that shorten the life span.

Common Health Issues in Huskies

Here is a list of common health issues that huskies are susceptible to.

  • Hip Dysplasia – an orthopedic condition found in medium to large size dogs where the top of the thighbone doesn’t fit properly into the dog’s hip socket. Common Health Issues in Huskies
  • Follicular Dysplasia – a condition that results in abnormal hair growth, hair loss, or even patchy and infectious skin.
  • Juvenile Cataracts – a condition where an opacity develops within the dog’s eye, specifically the lense, and potentially causing blindness. This usually develops before the dog is 2 years old and as young as 3 months.
  • Corneal Dystrophy – similar to cataracts this condition affects the dog’s eye again, this time the cornea, potentially causing blindness.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) – once again another condition that affects the eyes, this time when the retina begins to deteriorate, and can yet again lead to blindness.
  • Zinc Deficiency or Dermatosis – huskies require more zinc in their diet when compared to other breeds of dog or they can develop infectious crusty patches of fur, or dermatosis, and other symptoms.
  • Gastric Disease – more common in working or sled dogs, gastric diseases can cause pain and other symptoms to the dog’s stomach and intestines.

Tips to Keep Your Husky Healthy Longer

Luckily there are some preventative measures you can take to ensure your husky lives a full and healthy life.

First, when adopting a husky, if through a breeder make sure they are reputable and do not shy away from questions regarding the health of their dogs.

You should take your husky to the vet once or twice a year for checkups to make sure they are growing well. This will ensure that any big health issues are identified as early as possible and can be taken care of quickly.

Make sure your husky gets plenty of exercise and be sure not to feed them too much or they may put on additional weight leading to other health issues.You Can Never Love a Husky Too Much

A balanced and nutritious diet will help avoid gastric diseases and obesity in your husky. If you feed your dog ‘human food’ don’t do it too often and be aware of certain things that your dog should never have such as chocolate.

You Can Never Love a Husky Too Much

Adopting a husky is a huge commitment to make but before you know it a decade will have come and gone and your now senior husky will start to slow down and come to the end of their life cycle.

It’s important to be patient with your dog and know that you can never give them too much love.

We’re only here for a speck of time in the grand scheme of things and our dogs get even less so cherish every day with your beloved pet!

 

 

 

New Puppy Checklist – New Dog Checklist

New Puppy Checklist

Bringing home a new dog of any age is a big decision that should be made together as a family. Even before we met Aura my partner and I knew that bringing home a dog would be a huge responsibility to share and had many open and honest conversations about it.

To help make sure you’re prepared to bring home your new pet use this new puppy checklist which doubles as a new dog checklist to make sure you have all the necessary essentials and then some.

Collar

There are many different types of collars for a new dog owner to choose from and each has its advantages and disadvantages. It might be a good idea to buy a variety to see what works best with your husky. Aura's blue martingale collar

For Aura we bought her a pink martingale collar that really brings our her eyes. Martingale collars are much gentler than a choke collar and much safer on the dog making them great for training purposes. To the right is a picture of the blue martingale collar that she came with.

ID Tag

In case your dog ever gets lost or escapes it’s a good idea to have an ID tag on them at all times. Huskies are especially adept at getting away so you may also want to get your pup microchipped as an added precaution.

We had a custom ID tag made at Petsmart and it was a very simple and easy process. We put Aura’s name and our address engraved on the front of her tag. On the back we had our names and phone numbers engraved. She is also microchipped so if and when she gets away from us anyone who finds her will be able to locate her home easily.

Leash

A leash is a very important essential for any dog owner to have. In Arizona a leash no longer than 6 feet is required by law if you have your dog out in public.

Like collars leashes come in a variety of styles but they’re all essentially just a rope you can attach to your dog’s collar to help keep control over them. We have two standard nylon leashes, one is about 3 feet and the other one is closer to 5 feet in length.

Dog Food

You’ll need something for your dog to eat when you bring them home and human food is unfortunately not going to cut it. Awhile ago I watched a documentary on Netflix called ‘Pet Fooled’ and it left me feeling like I don’t even want a dog because I’m going to end up killing it by choosing the wrong or contaminated food.

Our best advice is to do your own research and feed your pooch what you think is best, and stay consistent. If you elect to make any changes to your pet’s diet do it slowly so their stomach can acclimate to the new food.

Water and Food Dishes

At least one set of food and water bowls should be purchased before you bring your new pup home. Feeding them in the same place with the same bowls will teach them good eating manners and provide a perfect time for training.

Weighted stainless steel or chrome dishes are the best as they can’t be pushed around as easily or develop crevices from the dog chewing on it. If your dog is an outdoor dog and you live somewhere where it gets cold enough use a ceramic or plastic bowl as this will prevent your dog’s tongue from getting stuck to it in colder temperatures.

Treats

For many dogs treats are key for good training. In most cases nothing can hold the attention of a husky better than a delicious treat can.

Give treats to your dog to reinforce good behavior and to connect a good action to reward, or even just out of the blue every once in awhile to show you love them.

Chew Toys

Chew toys are a great thing to have around when you need your dog to entertain itself for a little while. These can also make good training treats if your dog responds well enough to them. Be sure to purchase new toys on a continuous basis to keep your pup interested and expose them to new experiences.

Aura absolutely loves toys that squeak and she can tear them to shreds within a day so we will definitely be buying her a variety of new chew toys on a regular basis.

Crate

Some people have an aversion to crates because they remind us of little jail cells but it doesn’t have to be that way. A crate Fold and Carry Dog Crate Box from Grreat Choiceshould be a safe sanctuary for your dog to run to when they are feeling anxious or afraid. If your dog is ever injured or you need to transport them somewhere it is much easier with a crate. Plus if you’re traveling with your pet many hotels will only allow crate trained dogs in their establishment.

We have a ‘Fold and Carry Dog Crate’ from Grreat Choice and it’s plenty big for our husky Aura. Its dimensions are 42 in L x 28 in W x 30 in giving her plenty of room to turn around and get comfortable in. We plan on eventually converting one of our closets into a custom space that can be used like a den for her.

Outdoor Kennel

Especially if your dog is an outdoor pet you should purchase an outdoor kennel which, similar to a crate, gives the dog somewhere they can retreat to the feeling of safety. If you don’t have a yard for your outdoor pup the kennel should be at least 6 x 12 feet and 6 feet high. Huskies are known to be good diggers and climbers when they want to get somewhere so putting it on a concrete slab is most ideal if possible.

We bought our house with adopting a dog in mind so our backyard is plenty big and has very high walls.

Grooming Tools

Here are a few grooming supplies to pick up before you bring your husky home.

  • Rake Brush – Huskies have two coats of fur and a rake brush can help get knots out and untangle hair.Rake Brush, Wide-toothed Metal Comb, Slicker Brush
  • Wide-toothed Metal Comb – Like the rake a wide-toothed metal comb or ‘collie comb’ can be used to further untangle matted fur and is a little gentler.
  • Slicker Brush – Once you have raked your husky’s undercoat out you’ll want to use a slicker brush to smooth the fur over and keep it fluffy and soft.
  • Spray Bottle – Filling this with water and using it when brushing matted fur out with a rake or collie comb can be very helpful. Depending on how your dog reacts to it and spray bottle can be used as a deterrent for bad behavior.
  • Dog Nail Clippers – Husk nails should be trimmed three to four times a year but be careful not to cut too deep or you’ll cut the quick and cause a lot of pain for your friend. You can always have a professional dog grooming service take care of this step if you’re concerned about messing up.
  • Dog Shampoo – Try not to bathe your husky too much or you will dry out their skin and fur. A few times a year is more than enough or whenever your pup gets into something nasty and makes a mess.
  • Small Tooth Brush with Dog Toothpaste – Toothpaste made for humans sometimes contain toxic ingredients to dogs so be sure to get tooth paste specifically made for dogs or just use water.
  • Grooming Table – It’s really nice to have a space dedicated to your pets grooming needs.

Dog Bed

Even if your dog sleeps in your bed it is important to get them a spot reserved especially for them. Feel free to put your dog bed in your dog’s crate or leave it somewhere else around the house that your dog is likely to nap.

Dog Door

A dog door isn’t necessarily a necessity but they are a nice thing to have for convenience. A good dog door will allow your pet in and out at will and certain models can do more than others such as letting your pup in but not back out or vice versa.

Gates

Baby or doggie gates can be used to restrict your dog’s access to certain parts of the house. We plan on purchasing one to teach Aura to stay out of the kitchen when dinner is being made.

Cleaning Supplies

Especially if you’re bringing a puppy home expect there to be mishaps and spills so here is a list of some cleaning supplies that will come in handy.

  • Paper towels – for when you inevitably need to clean a mess up.
  • Baby wipes – an easy way to wipe your dog down without a full on bath if they get into something icky.
  • Stain remover – if you have carpet anywhere in your house this will come in handy if there are any accidents.
  • Training pads – especially for puppies you may want to line the area they’ll be in with training pads while potty training.

Miscellaneous Extras

These items aren’t absolutely necessary to have but are very convenient to have!

  • Bag Dispenser – Having a place to keep all your doggie bags neat comes in handy. You can purchase the bags separately or like us just save and use plastic grocery bags.
  • Pooper Scooper – Especially if your yard is your dog’s main restroom one of these will make picking up after your pet much easier on your back. I try to go out and clear our yard of dog droppings once a week or so.
  • Food Scooper – If you monitor your dog’s diet a dedicated scoop that measures out the perfect amount of food is awesome to have.
  • Dog Literature – If you’re going to own a husky, or any dog for that matter, it’s good to do a little research on the breed. We recommend Siberian Huskies for Dummies by Diane Morgan as a good start.

A Whole Bunch of Love

The most important thing on this checklist is love. Dogs are very intelligent creatures that pickup on whatever energy you’re putting out there. If you’re stressed or angry they will know it. They’ll give you unconditional love and will know if you’re giving it back.

Bringing home a puppy or new dog is an amazing experience but can also be a stressful one. I hope this new puppy and new dog checklist helps prepare you a little better if you’re thinking about adopting a dog.

Leave a comment below with your new puppy checklist and let me know if there’s something I missed!

How to Show Your Dog You Love Them – Best Tips for Dog Lovers

Show Your Dog You Love Them

As humans I don’t know what we did to deserve dogs but I’m so happy they’re here. They are beautiful creatures that shower us in unconditional love and affection. I know Aura loves me, but how do I show her that I love her right back just as much? I did some research and found some of the best ways on how to show your dog you love them.

Dogs are just as unique as people and each one has a unique and distinct personality. While these are a few tips on how to show your dog you love them, keep in mind your own critter may take to some of these tips better than others or not at all. Most importantly to show your dog you love them you should spend time with and get to know what they like and don’t like.

Talk to Your Husky

Recent evidence has been uncovered that dogs actually understand human speech better than previously thought. So saying derogatory words in a happy voice, as fun as it can be, should be avoided. We tell Aura we love her every day in a loving tone to match. Telling your dog you love them, telling them about your day, or even reading them a book is a great way to show them your love. If you need something to brighten your day be sure to read about the Shelter Buddies Reading Program where kids in Missouri are learning to read stories to shelter dogs.

Let Your Husky Hang Out With You

This may seem like an obvious one but let your dog hang out with you. Dogs are social creatures like us and crave being around you. If your dog is an outside dog be sure to go outside and spend time with them! For your next vacation think about looking at pet friendly destinations because a dog can make a great vacation exponentially better. We let Aura hang out with us whether we’re hanging out watching television or out working in the backyard.

Raise Your Eyebrows

Dogs have an amazing ability to pick up on human emotions through body language and facial expressions. In 2013 a group of Japanese researchers discovered that dogs raised their eyebrows, especially the left one, when reuniting with their owner. Smiling and raising your eyebrows while talking in a calm or uplifting voice is a great way to show your dog you love them.

Socialize Your Husky

It’s extremely important to socialize your dog starting at a young age to avoid the Two Huskies Socializingdevelopment of aggressive or overprotective behavior. Going on walks, maybe to a dog park, is an excellent way to get your pooch some exercise and maybe meet some friendly neighbors. Better yet, plan a play date with a friend’s dog or enroll your pup in a class to pass the American Kennel Club’s ‘Canine Good Citizen‘ test.

Give Your Husky Physical Affection

Most pets, not just dogs, crave physical affection just as much as they do attention and food. Aura absolutely loves being pet and will transform into a puddle right before your eyes if you give her enough of it. Plus petting your dog is a great way to release helpful neurochemicals like oxytocin into your brain.

You may have heard that dogs actually don’t appreciate hugs as much as humans do. There is some debate behind whether this information is concretely backed with scientific data so it’s best to get to know your dog to see if he or she likes hugs or not. Aura loves to be cuddled and pet but is not a fan of hugs.

If you don’t want to risk hugging you can always go for ear scratching. The spot behind your dog’s ear is a nerve center that sends ‘feel good’ endorphins all throughout their body when you give it a good massaging. This is a very sensitive area so it’s important to be gentle with these precious parts by rubbing softly.

Take Your Husky on Walks

Dogs, especially huskies, crave structure and need something to do. Going on recurring walks at the same time every day is a great way to provide your dog with something to look forward to as well as ensuring they get adequate exercise. Plus they will love spending this precious time with you.

Physically Lean on Your Husky

Sometimes a dog will brush its coat against or lean on a person. The cute little critter isn’t trying to move the person out of the way or anything malicious, it’s actually a sign of love and trust from dogs.

When Aura leans up against me it’s the equivalent of a dog hug and is one of the ways that she communicates her trust in me. If you want to show your dog you love them feel free to lean right back into them (but not so much that you squish them) when this happens.

Let Your Husky Sleep With You

Letting your dog sleep in your bed can be a divisive issue amongst couples and Husky Sleeping on Floortruthfully we don’t allow Aura in bed simply because it’s too small for all three of us. However, letting your pup sleep with you is one of the highest forms of trust a dog can show and receive. While asleep dogs are in a very vulnerable state and so need to put quite a bit of trust in you before cuddling up for some ‘Z’s.

Letting your dog sleep with you is a great way to show your love and reap some positive health benefits as well. If you don’t want your dog up on your bed you can always join them on their dog bed or catch an afternoon nap on the sofa with them!

Gaze Lovingly Into Your Husky’s Eyes

Most people know you shouldn’t lock eyes with an aggressive dog because it can be perceived as a challenge from the dog and even instigate aggression.

However, as with most words context is extremely important. A recent study found that when a dog and owner share a calm, longing gaze, much like with petting oxytocin is produced in both the dog and the human. For best effect speak in a soft voice while petting and looking calmly into your pet’s eyes!

Groom Your Husky

Having your dog groomed on a regular basis, or better yet doing it yourself, is a great way to bond with and show your love for your dog. Huskies especially can develop very thick overcoats that need to be brushed often or it can become tangled and matted.

Baths are also a great bonding experience to have with your dog. Some dogs take to bath time with fun and pleasure immediately while others may have to be coaxed into letting you wash them. A good rule of thumb is to brush your husky at least once a week and bath at least once a month.

Heart Your Husky

Love Your Husky

Once again I just want to reiterate that every dog has a unique personality special just to them so it’s extremely important for a dog owner to get to know their dog to find out what kinds of thing he or she likes or dislikes.

Some dogs love being pet while others prefer not to be touched. Some like games of fetch while others refuse to be interested in any toys. The most surefire way on how to show your dog you love them is to spend time with and get to know his or her personality.

In what unique ways do you show your dog you love them? Let us know in the comments below!

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