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Heatstroke in Dogs

Temperatures that are comfortable for us can, under certain circumstances, lead to heat stroke for the dog.

Heat stroke in dogs

If temperatures rise to over 25°C in summer, dogs are more likely to suffer from heatstroke. Since there are no sweat glands on large parts of the skin in dogs and cats, the animals are very sensitive to heat. Sweat glands are only located on the nose and the ball of the nose. This is too small a surface area to regulate body temperature sufficiently. And unlike humans, the warm fur can be exchanged for an airy summer dress.

 

How does heatstroke occur in dogs?

If the dog is exposed to heat for a long time and has no opportunity to retreat to a cool place, the dog can very quickly develop heat stroke. If you park your car in the sun at a pleasant 24°C, it can become a fatal trap for your dog inside within an hour. Never leave your dog alone in the car, even if it is in the shade. The sun moves and the car turns into an oven within a very short time.

In warm weather, high humidity, and strenuous physical activity, well-trained dogs can suffer heat stroke. Rescue dogs may only be used for 15 minutes at temperatures above 30°C. Then a sufficiently long break must be taken and the animal must have unrestricted access to water. To ensure that the rescue dog is adequately protected, the body temperature is checked regularly.

If your dog is a flat-nosed dog (e.g. French Bulldog, Pug, Boxer, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Pekingese…) you should be particularly careful. Even a quiet walk in the midday heat can cause heat stroke in a dog with restricted breathing.

What happens when you have heat stroke?

Dogs dissipate heat by panting. Due to the resulting loss of fluid, the animals become dehydrated and their body temperature continues to rise. From a body temperature of 40°C, the organs are no longer adequately supplied with blood, significant circulatory problems occur and shock can occur. If the body temperature continues to rise, the body’s own protein clots, the animal collapses and, after a painful struggle, dies of heart failure.

 

These are the signs of heat stroke:

  • heavy panting and shallow breathing
  • great restlessness, the dog is looking for a place in the shade
  • rapid pulse and heart palpitations
  • Body temperature over 40°C
  • deep red tongue and glassy gaze
  • Inside of ears are hot and red
  • the animal is exhausted, restless and convulsing
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Balance disorders and staggering
  • Apathy and, in the worst case, unconsciousness

First aid measures for heat stroke:

  • move the animal to a cool, well-ventilated place
  • offer the animal measured water (never force it)
  • place the dog on a damp towel and cool his head and neck
  • slowly moisten the legs
  • shower the animal slowly and carefully, starting with the legs
  • Do not under any circumstances pour water on the animal, risk of shock!
  • under no circumstances use ice-cold water, danger to life!
  • If the dog is unconscious, place him on his right side, stretching his head and neck to prevent suffocation

take the animal to the vet immediately
If you have a heat-damaged dog, you should always and under all circumstances consult a veterinarian! Only a veterinarian has the chance to prevent irreparable damage and initiate emergency measures.

Here are some useful tips on how to get your dog through the summer heat!

 

 

A very warm welcome

A very warm welcome

Felt cat caves with latex cushionsI am delighted that you have found our blog here. In future, everything here will revolve around dogs, cats and the people that go with them. We will be discussing all topics relating to our 4-legged friends. I'm looking forward to...

Restful sleep for my dog

Why a quiet, restful sleep is so important for dogs.

For most dogs, the daily routine is similar. After the last round of walks, the dog and his owner go to bed. Peace returns, the dog can switch off and get a restful sleep. With a bit of luck next to your master and mistress in the bedroom. These sleeping sounds calm the pack animal dog the most.
It starts with the first alarm ringing. People become active and from this point on, the four-legged friend can no longer properly assess everyday life. He finds it difficult to switch off and usually just dozes in our presence.
If the dog sleeps deeply and soundly, the dog usually lies stretched out for a long time and there is hardly any body tension. If the four-legged friend is just resting, his eyes are closed, but he is always ready to react immediately to any deviations.

Healthy, sufficient and restful sleep is essential for dogs.

Rest periods throughout the day are extremely important to gather strength and process experiences. In addition, the immune system is strengthened and our four-legged friend is less susceptible to illness. Dogs get restful sleep, are much more relaxed in their behavior, more receptive, learn faster and have better motor skills.

Restful sleep is important for the dog.

Dogs need a restful sleep.

How do I recognise if my dog is sleeping deeply?

If the dog is just resting, he has his eyes open and is looking around. He lies quietly in his place in the dog bed and doesn’t let himself be disturbed immediately.

When the dog is dozing, its nose and ears scan the surroundings. He has his eyes closed, is breathing normally and is not dreaming.

Dogs’ deep sleep phases are quite similar to those of humans. When you fall asleep, your heart rate and breathing slow down and your blood pressure drops. The REM phase comes in which the dogs process their experiences of the day. If the four-legged friend twitches and whines with his eyes closed, he is dreaming and is in the deep sleep phase. In contrast to humans, who dream for about a quarter of the deep sleep phase, the REM phase in adult dogs only lasts about 10% of their sleeping time, although young dogs need a little more.

Scientists have found that humans and dogs show identical patterns of sleep deprivation. They are initially more overexcited, then unfocused and have poor motor skills. Then comes the phase in which they are very irritable. The first symptoms of illness then appear, which can become chronic.
That’s why you should provide your dog with a place to sleep that offers maximum regeneration, because restful sleep is so important.

Restful sleep can be learned again.

Our dogs are no longer used to natural periods of rest. They are just as active as their master. Many dog owners also think they have to keep the dog busy. But the animal actually has to learn again to fall into a deep sleep during the day. In order for the dog to fall into a deep sleep during the day, a few things must be considered.
The perfect sleeping place is the be-all and end-all for the optimal regeneration of your four-legged friend.

Nature has shaped dogs’ natural sleep experience. In order to have a feeling of security and protection, wolves dig a hole for themselves. Dogs get this security when their backs are protected, for example with our BOOX, CUBE, BLOOM dog bed or our ARENA dog basket.

Do not place the dog basket in the middle of the room. It is better to place it on a quiet side or corner of the room, without direct sunlight and free from drafts. Also not directly in front of the heater, as the dog can quickly become too warm. Please do not place the sleeping area in a passage or hallway. There is too much “traffic” and unrest at this point. So that your furry friend can switch off and find peace, a somewhat hidden, protected place is the right place for the dog bed.

To prevent joint problems, please do not let your dog sleep directly on the cold, hard floor. Provide him with a place to sleep that is well insulated from cold and heat (underfloor heating). Our dog cushions are thick enough to meet these requirements. The orthopedic latex filling also ensures a healthy, deep sleep. It supports the dog’s body with its excellent point elasticity and optimally reflects the body shape so that there is no pressure on the intervertebral discs and spine. This ensures optimal muscle relaxation.
If the dog already has problems with its joints, we recommend a viscoelastic (memory foam) dog mat like our PAUL or MARY.
Make sure the dog bed is the right size. The dog should also be able to stretch out properly.

Which also ensures a good night’s sleep.

Exercise and exposure to fresh air are essential for a good night’s sleep. Mental demands such as nose work and tracking require not only the muscles but also the head. A restful sleep also depends on a good sleeping environment, but we have already discussed that. At night it is also important that the room is dark. The animal should also not be disturbed by loud ambient noises. To ensure that the bladder doesn’t strain during the night and prevent the dog from sleeping through the night, a final walk should take place before going to bed. Feed him early in the evening so that he has enough time to digest his evening meal.

Serious causes of too much sleep.

There is a big difference between sleeping and lying lethargic. Watch your dog closely. If he seems rather sluggish and lethargic, you should first check his feeding habits. Is it possible that your four-legged friend is not drinking enough or does he hardly have an appetite? This can be a serious red flag. When we humans have the flu, we don’t want to get out of bed and suffer from loss of appetite and lack of motivation. Watch your dog closely and see if he might
– receives too little employment and is under-challenged
– suffers from an underactive thyroid
– Is diabetic
– suffers from depression
– was infected with Lyme disease from a tick bite

Basically: 16 to 20 hours of sleep is normal for dogs and usually not a cause for concern. However, if your animal’s behavior suddenly changes, he is much less active, lies lethargic in his bed, or his drinking habits or eating behavior change, you should always consult a veterinarian.

Simply bake healthy dog biscuits with oatmeal yourself

Homemade dog biscuits are a healthy treat for your dog.

If you enjoy baking for yourself and your loved ones, it makes sense to make some healthy dog biscuits for your dog. Just bake these oatmeal dog treats for your four-legged friend. You can be sure that your homemade dog biscuits do not contain any harmful colors or preservatives. They are also ideal for dogs that cannot tolerate wheat. The recipe for these treats is simple and doesn’t require many ingredients. The combination of oat curls, egg and butter is sure to hit your dog’s taste buds.
Ingredients for the dog biscuits:

300 g fine oat flakes
2 eggs
125g butter or margarine
Water, as needed

oatmeal

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preparation of the treats:

Knead all the ingredients into a dough and add a little water if necessary so that a roll can be formed. Let the roll rest in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. Then cut into thalers and bake them at 150°C. The thalers keep well if they are dried and stored in a paper bag.

You can also customize the dog biscuits according to your four-legged friend’s preferences. For example, you can refine the cookies with cheese, meat or vegetables. Whatever your four-legged friend’s taste is. He will be thrilled.

A very warm welcome

Felt cat caves with latex cushions

I am delighted that you have found our blog here. In future, everything here will revolve around dogs, cats and the people that go with them. We will be discussing all topics relating to our 4-legged friends. I’m looking forward to it!

 

Best regards Christel

Dog cushion from Buffalo leather

A cat moves in – the best tips for settling in

The time has finally come: a cat is moving in. You can look forward to some intense and exciting weeks. Whether it’s a kitten or an old cat, a pedigree cat from a breeder or from animal welfare, the new family member will take your heart and your home together by storm.
It is difficult to give precise instructions on how to acclimatize a cat. There are great settling-in tips on how to prepare for the arrival of a kitten. With our experience, the settling-in phase will go smoothly.

A cat moves in - the best tips for settling in

3 little Kittens in Credo Cat Basket

How old should the cat be when it moves in?

In order to experience good socialization, a kitten should live with its mother and siblings for at least 12 weeks. Researchers at the University of Helsinki have found that cats should live with their mother and siblings for the first 13 weeks. Then they develop into friendlier creatures with fewer behavioral problems. It therefore pays to wait patiently for the cat to move in.
However, the separation from mother and siblings should not be underestimated. The separation is not easy for the young kitten and the mother. To give the kitten some comfort in its new home, it is advisable to prepare a blanket that smells of its mother and siblings. You can bring the blanket together with the mother and siblings for some time so that the scent is transferred. The blanket will help to calm the little kitten in its new home. If possible, adopt two kittens from the same litter. This makes separation easier and most cats love to live with a conspecific.
Conversely, it is a good idea to introduce the cat to your scent before you move in. You can bring the breeder or the owner of the mother cat one of your items of clothing. This will help the kitten get used to your smell.

A cat is moving in: How do I get them used to their new home?

Whether a kitten or an older animal, a cat moving in is exciting for every age group. You can prepare a few things so that the many new impressions don’t overwhelm the cat when it moves in. If possible, prepare a room (not a transit room) in which the new resident can acclimatize alone. Ideally, secure the entrance to the room with a puppy fence or net. After moving in, the cat can observe what is going on without having to leave the room. The cat’s room should have everything the new arrival needs. A litter tray, a cat basket, a scratching area and food and water will be needed when the cat moves in.
As soon as you arrive home with your cat, leave the transport box open in the cat’s room. Ideally, the room should not offer too many hiding places. Leave it up to the kitten to decide when it wants to leave the box. If the new family member still hasn’t ventured out after several hours, you should help. Lure the animal out with a treat or toy. However difficult it may be, give the kitten time. The kitten first has to get used to the new noises, smells and impressions. Cats are curious and will soon explore the room on their own and seek contact with the other housemates. With these settling-in tips, the move in will go smoothly.

How long does it take for a kitten to settle in?

Let the new roommate set the pace. First he has to get used to the unknown people and the unfamiliar surroundings. It is not easy to interpret and assess the new impressions correctly. As soon as the kitten feels safe and secure in the cat room, it will want to explore the rest of the house. Cats also have very different characters. Some are more alert, while other kittens are not so brash. You can be sure that you will soon wish you had a shy representative in the house rather than the extroverted explorer it may have become.
Do not pick up or hold the kitten against its will. Wait patiently for the moment when it comes to you on its own. We are still not allowed to pick up our Gisela after 8 years together. She hates it and doesn’t want to be carried around at all. She comes for cuddles very often, but only when she wants to. Always at the wrong time, of course. And what does the cat lover do then? He takes the time to look after her, of course.
Surround your new arrival with as many things as possible that he knows from his old home. The blanket that smells of his mother and siblings, the same familiar food and cat litter. Do you want to make changes? Do this carefully and only when the cat has already settled in.

A cat moves in: How do I get two cats used to each other?

If the new roommate will be part of a cat community, it makes sense to prepare the existing pack for the arrival of the new member of the same species in good time:

Bring along a sample of the new cat’s scent (blanket, cloth, cushion) so that the animals already living in the household can get used to the new arrival’s scent.
As soon as all the animals in the household have arrived, take turns stroking both animals. Do not wash your hands in between so that the cats’ scents mix.
The room where the first cat prefers to spend time should not be the new cat’s arrival room. The animals should be able to sniff each other first through the puppy gate or partition. Separation also prevents the new arrival from unknowingly entering the territory of the cat already living in the household.
Place the two cats’ food bowls opposite each other, separated by the barrier. This will give the “foreign” smell of the food a positive imprint.
Please pay particular attention to the first cat during the arrival period to avoid jealousy.
If the reunion is imminent, it is important that you are in the same room. If the situation gets out of hand, you can intervene if necessary.

A cat is moving in: What accessories are needed?

Cat litter tray

Normally there should always be one more litter tray than there are cats in the household. It’s best to let the cat decide whether it should be a toilet with a lid or not. Some animals love a cave, which also has the advantage that the smell stays in the toilet. Other cats, however, need the free space above them.
In any case, the lower bowl of the toilet should be relatively high. The litter can be poured in generously and there is still enough space at the top. Because if the cat buries its droppings with passion, not so much litter flies over the edge of the toilet.
There are also different preferences when it comes to litter. Try out what your house cat likes best. Gisela prefers fine clumping litter. When we buy it, we make sure that it does not contain any fragrance additives. We can’t imagine that this strong scent is pleasant for cats’ noses. A carpet under the toilet that picks up the crumbs from the paws has also proved its worth. This way, the cat litter pellets are not carried around the whole apartment.

Scratching post

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a complete scratching post. It is enough if you offer your kitten a surface to scratch on. Whether sisal, needle felt or something similar, you should also test out your cat’s preferences here. The cat will use the scratching surface provided for it if it is comfortable for it. Our first cat, Mrs. Schmitt, preferred needle felt and scratched on nothing else, Gisela only sharpens her claws on sisal.

Sleeping place for the cat

We now know that cats are individualists. Whether a cuddly cave, a cat house or a cat basket is the chosen place to sleep, cats prefer to choose it themselves. Observe the kitten for a while. You will recognize whether it prefers to sleep in seclusion and quietly or at a lofty height with an overview. For a relaxed nap, a cozy cave or a hollow in the pillow may also be an option. Our Gisela is showered with places to sleep and has to work hard for her food as a prototype tester. No matter where we are in the house, she always sleeps near us. In the office alone, she has three pillows and baskets, all of which she sleeps on equally. Of course, this is not necessary for your cat, but it shows that there is not just one favorite place.

Feeding and drinking bowl

For our Gisela, two feeding bowls have proved their worth. One for wet food, which is fed at a certain time of day. A fumble box for dry food, in which food is available throughout the day. However, Gisela has to use skill and patience to get the individual treats out of the fumble box. This keeps her mentally fit, food is not automatically available and has to be worked for.
Place several water bowls in different places, but none next to the food bowl. Cats tend to drink very little. When they feel thirsty, they will prefer to eat rather than quench their thirst. You will be surprised which watering places they prefer.

Transport box

To transport your kitten safely, you need a transport box. It’s up to you whether you want it with the opening facing upwards or forwards.

Food adapted to age

There is food to suit every age. I cook wet food for our Gisela myself and freeze it in portions. She loves it. We buy very different dry food so that she doesn’t get used to one taste. Is the kitten still so small that it can’t cope with the bowl? That’s because it hasn’t figured out the head-bobbing trick yet. You can start feeding with a spoon. Slowly lower the spoon towards the bowl until it is able to eat from the bowl on its own. A small kitten initially needs four to five smaller meals. We have found that cats do not need a feeding time. Dry food, which she has to work for, is always available. Gisela gets wet food once or twice a day. This prevents food cravings and you personally do not have to be at the bowl at a certain time.

Brush

Not only long-haired cats need regular grooming, short-haired cats also love to be brushed. For one thing, the winter coat comes off more easily in spring and the cat loses significantly less hair. It has also become a wonderful ritual between us, Gisela loves being stroked with the brush. You can find an article on grooming here.

a cat-shaped toy out of wool felt dashes over the smooth floor

little felt cats are dashing over the floor

Toys

It is important to buy or make toys where no parts can come loose and be swallowed by the kitten. Our felt cats are very popular. These run noiselessly over smooth floors and can be maltreated wonderfully.

 

Here you will find useful tips on how to keep your new cat busy.

A very warm welcome

A very warm welcome

Felt cat caves with latex cushionsI am delighted that you have found our blog here. In future, everything here will revolve around dogs, cats and the people that go with them. We will be discussing all topics relating to our 4-legged friends. I'm looking forward to...

Incontinence in dogs – Is my dog incontinent?

If the animal loses urine uncontrollably, this is known as canine incontinence. After sleeping, the dog leaves wet patches on its dog bed and leaks urine, even though it has long been house-trained. The lives of both dog and owner are severely affected and a veterinary diagnosis and treatment is necessary.

DIVAN Uno dog cushion with incontinence cover

What is incontinence in dogs?

An incontinent dog unconsciously leaks urine or faeces. This can happen while standing, walking or sleeping. Depending on how severe the dog’s incontinence is, it can be a few drops of urine or a whole stream. More rarely, incontinence affects faeces. In the most common form of incontinence, the dog loses a few drops of urine at night while sleeping. If the bladder sphincter is relaxed, the dog can no longer control it. This often happens in older female dogs when they no longer produce female sex hormones. However, incontinence can also occur in neutered dogs, due to illness or trauma.
More female dogs are affected than male dogs, as the ureter is much shorter and straighter in female dogs. Large dogs such as Dobermans, Rottweilers, Boxers and Giant Schnauzers are more frequently affected. Sheepdogs, Bernese mountain dogs, dachshunds and spaniels are less frequently affected.

Why is my dog incontinent?

Several reasons can lead to incontinence in dogs. There is age-related incontinence, which is more common in female dogs than male dogs. Castration in dogs is also associated with incontinence. In around 30% of all large, spayed bitches, incontinence occurs on average after 3 to 5 years. In unfavourable cases, incontinence occurs immediately, in favourable cases only after 8 to 10 years. Only 10% of smaller dog breeds are affected by incontinence.
Various diseases such as cystitis, malformations of the ureters or nerve damage can lead to incontinence. To find out the cause reliably, an appointment with the vet is essential.

Diagnosis and treatment of incontinence in dogs

If there is a disease causing the incontinence, it must be treated without fail. Malformations in the urethra, bladder stones or a tumour in the bladder are serious conditions that may require surgical intervention.
Dogs that become incontinent due to castration can be treated well and successfully with appropriate medication. These drugs increase the muscle tension in the urethra and support urethral closure.
Homeopathic therapy can help and nutritional supplements such as pumpkin seeds or cranberries can have a positive effect.

Can incontinence in dogs be prevented?

Basically not. It is assumed that there is less urinary leakage due to castration if only the ovaries are removed and the uterus remains in the dog.

Tips for living with an incontinent dog.

It is not in a dog’s nature to soil its living area. House-trained animals suffer psychologically from their incontinence. Dogs have fine noses and they hate smelling their urine. It is very important to react with understanding. As the dog is not leaking urine on purpose, it must not be punished for it under any circumstances.

Wearing nappies from time to time can be a way of making everyday life easier. Unfortunately, it is not advisable to wear nappies permanently, as this can irritate the dog’s skin and coat.

To prevent unpleasant odours from forming in the house, it is helpful to clean all floors regularly. Also wash the dog bed at short intervals. The dog beds from pet-interiors are all washable and suitable for tumble drying. We have developed matching incontinence covers for all our dog cushions to make it easier for you to live with your four-legged friend.

The incontinence cover from pet-interiors keeps the dog bed clean