Is My Dog Sick?

Every dog owner will at some point wonder, Is My Dog Sick?

Checking a pet’s vital signs and performing a basic exam at home can help dog owners determine if their dog is sick and in need of a vet visit.

According to Dr. Michael Levine, DVM, there are several things that should be checked to help pet owners determine if their dog is, in fact, ill. The following values should be checked hourly and recorded, so pet owners can determine if the dog’s condition is worsening, improving or remaining stable.

- Has your dog stopped eating? An ill dog will not eat at all, or the dog will consume much less in terms of the amount of food. A dog who isn’t eating will need supplemental sugar to ward off hypoglycemia.

- Has your dog stopped drinking? A dog who feels unwell will stop drinking, which can quickly lead to dehydration and ultimately, death due to organ failure.

- Is your dog lethargic? A sick dog will sleep more and their activity level will be below normal. The dog may be hesitant to get out of bed, go for a walk, or play.

- Does your dog have a normal temperature? A dog’s normal rectal temperature is between 100.5 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. Ear temperature will be slightly lower. A temperature outside of this normal range is an indicator of a sick dog and a trip to the veterinarian is in order.

- Do your dog’s gums look normal? Normal gums should be a shade of pink, while problems like internal bleeding, anemia, or a disruption of normal blood flow will cause gums to be a shade of white, grey, blue or brick red, or yellow in color.

- Is your dog panting or drooling excessively? Panting can be a sign of distress, pain and discomfort.

- Is your dog restless? A restless dog is often a sick dog who is experiencing serious discomfort.

- Is your dog’s heart rate abnormal? Normal heart rate varies from dog to dog based on age, size and activity level, but a consistently fast or slow pulse can be indicative of illness and distress. A puppy or small dog’s heart rate will be around 180 beats per minute. And adult dog or a larger dog will have a normal rate somewhere between 60 and 160 beats per minute.

- Is your dog vomiting? Vomiting all food and drink for 18 hours or more can lead to serious dehydration and it can be a sign of a serious problem like an intestinal obstruction. Also look for projectile vomiting, blood in the vomit (either bright red or the consistency and color of coffee grounds), or a foul smelling vomit that smells similar to excrement.

- Does your dog have diarrhea? A dog with chronic diarrhea can end up seriously dehydrated. Other signs of a problem include blood in the feces or unproductive straining.

- Is your dog dehydrated? Pinch a dog’s skin between the shoulder blades. A healthy dog’s skin should flatten right out. A sick dog’s skin will flatten out over the course of several seconds. Also feel the gums; they should be slick and wet, not dry and sticky.

- Is your dog urinating frequently? Frequent urination, pain while urinating and straining can be a sign of a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) in dogs.

- Has your dog stopped playing? A normally playful dog will be less active when he’s sick.

Pet owners should also where they can find help for their pet in the event of an emergency.

In advance of a pet illness or injury involving a pet, locate a 24-hour veterinary clinic in your area and visit the clinic so you’re familiar with its location. Pet owners shouldn’t waste valuable time locating a 24-hour clinic in an emergency situation involving their pet.

Is There A Pet Food Where I Can Give My Dog Variety?

Customers ask me this question all the time. Is there a pet food on the market where I can switch flavors from time to time and give my dog some variety that wont bother my dogs belly? I just feel like my dog gets bored with the same flavor.


The answer is YES.


FROMM Four-Star pet food is all about variety. Each recipe is formulated for all life stages and is suitable for puppies, adults, and senior dogs. Because each recipe has a similar blend of fresh fruits, vegetables, brown rice, and potatoes it is encouraged to switch between each variety monthly, weekly, or even daily. We even have grain-free varieties.

What Dog Breeds Do Not Shed?

Small dogs that don’t shed:

  • Basenji
  • Bedlington Terrier
  • Bichon Frise Bolognese
  • Border Terrier
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Cairn Terrier
  • Chinese Crested
  • Coton de Tulear
  • Havanese
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Maltese
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Miniature Schnauzer
  • Shih Tzu
  • Silky Terrier
  • Toy Poodle
  • West Highland White Terrier
  • Xoloitzcuintli
  • Yorkshire Terrier

Medium dogs that don’t shed:

  • Cocker Spaniel-Poodle mix
  • Lowchen
  • Kerry Blue Terrier
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Portuguese Water Dog
  • Puli
  • Standard Schnauzer
  • Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
  • Wirehaired Fox Terrier

Large dogs that don’t shed:

  • Airedale Terrier
  • Bouvier Des Flandres
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Irish Water Spaniel
  • Labrador Retriever-Poodle mix
  • Standard Poodle
  • Tibetan Terrier

How To Trim Your Dogs Nails

Your dog’s nails should just touch the ground when she walks. If her nails are clicking on the floor or getting snagged in the carpet, it’s time for a pedicure.

Use trimmers designed for pets. Ask your veterinarian or a groomer for advice about what types of nail trimmers are best for your dog and how to use them properly.

Make sure the clippers are sharp.

Start at the tip of the nail and snip a little at a time. Look at the cut edge of the nail. When you start to see pale pink tissue near the top of the cut edge, stop. You can use a nail file to smooth the edges further.

Avoid cutting into the quick, which contains nerves and blood vessels. It is painful and will bleed easily. On white nails, the quick is the pink section.

Be extra careful when cutting dark nails, because the quick is difficult to see.

If the tip of the nail begins to bleed, apply pressure using styptic powder or a substitute such as baby powder or cotton.

Avoid wiping the blood clot off the tip of the nail once the bleeding has stopped.

Remember to trim the dewclaw nail, on the inside of the leg. Since it doesn’t touch the ground, it wears down less rapidly than the others.

Trim nails once or twice a month. The quick will lengthen if you don’t trim the nail regularly, and long nails can cause traction problems or become ingrown.

How And When To Bathe Your Chinchilla

Chinchillas don’t take normal baths with water. They prefer to take dust baths with a fine dust that gets into their coats and absorbs oil and dirt from the fur. As you learn about chinchilla care, you’ll find they actually need regular dust baths to keep their fur healthy and clean. They also seem to enjoy them quite a bit.It’s important to never bathe your chinchilla with water either, it will remove the oils from their skin and fur that helps regulate their body temperature.

Chinchilla Dust Bath Dust – What Is Best?

Special chinchilla dust bath may be purchased here.  It’s specially made to imitate the dust they would normally find in their natural habitat to take a bath in. Beware of buying similar powders or sand that may look the same, but won’t penetrate your chinchillas fur down to the skin to fully cleanse them.

To give your chinchilla a dust bath, you may purchase a ceramic chinchilla bath or find a big, heavy bowl that won’t tip over and put the dust into it. It should be just a bit larger than your chin that will be using it. A slightly enclosed container works perfect for this (like a canister or fishbowl). Make sure there’s about a half inch of dust in the bottom and stick it in your chinchilla cage when they are most active (evening is a good time).

You can reuse the dust if it looks fairly clean s long as you clean any clumps out after each use. If it gets dirty or too clumpy, then it’s time to throw the old dust out and refill your container with new stuff. You shouldn’t leave the dust bath in their cage all the time, as too much can dry their skin out and they might start using it for their litter box. Leaving the dust in the cage can also cause eye irritation, so it’s best just to take it out after it’s been used.

How Often Should I Set Up Chinchilla Dust Baths

Offering your chinchilla the dust bath around twice a week is usually enough to keep them clean. You can give them more though, if their fur starts to feel damp or oily. If you live in a more humid climate, then you’ll want to give your chin more dust baths. You should allow about 10-15 minutes of good rolling for a thorough cleansing. If you find their skin is becoming dry and flaky then try decreasing bathing time and frequency a little.

Just like many things that your chinchilla does, watching them take a dust bath can be pretty entertaining. It’s so different than what we’re used to, and very cute!



Care Instructions For Your Dog Gone Smart Crate Pad / Mat


Follow these few simple steps to care for your Dog Gone Smart Crate Pad / Mat:Because Dog Gone Smart crate pads/mats stay clean longer you don’t have to wash them as often as similar products on the market. When you do wash them they come out looking brand new just follow these simple instructions: 

  • Machine wash, gentle cycle, wash with similar colors
  • Use regular detergent
  • NEVER use fabric softener, dryer sheets or bleach as
        these will alter the finish of the fabric
  • Tumble dry at high heat
  •  Ironing is recommended 
  • These Mats are great I purchased a few of them for my dogs and they absolutely love them and they are very easy to care for. I highly recommend these Mats.  The beds are also great!

    Introducing the New Dog Gone Smart Crate Pads / Mats

    The Dog Gone Smart Crate Pads / Mats:

  • These easy-care fabrics are ideal for the messy puppy and older dogs alike 
  • The Dog Gone Smart Crate Mats have been Designed to fit most standard-sized crates and carriers 
  • These Crate Mats are Great for traveling.  These plush pads can be used as a bed or a protective car seat cushion. Your dog will just flop down wherever he sees his favorite mat and feel right at home
  • 100% soft cotton fabric on one side makes the pads cool in the summer while the reversed sherpa side provides extra warmth in the winter
  • The Dog Gone Smart Crate Pads / Mats come in a variety of diffrent Colors and sizes to fit your dogs needs.

    Caring For Your Dog Gone Smart Bed


    Because Dog Gone Smart Beds stay clean longer you don’t have to wash them as often as similar products on the market. When you do wash them they come out looking brand new just follow these simple instructions:    
      Inside Tufted Cushion:

  • Remove inside tufted cushion
  • Machine wash, gentle cycle, wash with similar colors
  • Use regular detergent
  • NEVER use fabric softener, dryer sheets or bleach as 
        these will alter the finish of the fabric
  • Tumble dry at high heatCover:
  • Unzip Cover and remove inside bolster, rezip cover
  • Machine wash, gentle cycle, wash with similar colors
  • Use regular detergent
  • NEVER use fabric softener, dryer sheets or bleach as 
        these will alter the finish of the fabric
  • Tumble dry at high heat
  •  Ironing is recommended   Bolster:
  • Hand wash only 
    Because Dog Gone Smart Beds stay clean longer you don’t have to wash them as often as similar products on the market. When you do wash them they come out looking brand new just follow these simple instructions:


  •  Unzip Cover and remove inside pillow, rezip cover
  •  Machine wash, gentle cycle, wash with similar colors
  •  Use regular detergent
  •  NEVER use fabric softener, dryer sheets or bleach as
         these will alter the finish of the fabric
  •  Tumble dry at high heat
  •  Ironing is recommended   Inside Pillow:
  •  Hand wash only
  • Why Purchase a Dog Gone Smart Bed?

    Built with Nano Technology, The Dog Gone Smart Bed is the most technically advanced dog bed on the market.
    Using the performance fabric finishes NanoSphere and ActiveSilver, these beds stay clean and kill bacteria naturally, standing up to the wear and tear of the most active dog. Non-toxic, pet safe, environmentally friendly, The Dog Gone Smart Bed earned the Bluesign health seal of approval! Canvas bottom with sherpa top.
    Dog Gone Smart Beds Have A Durable protective function:
    Dog Gone Smart Technology has an extremely high level of abrasion resistance using NanoSphere.  The protective function is retained even with heavy duty use, frequent washing or cleaning.
    Dog Gone Smart Technology uses a bacteriostatic that reduces the spread of bacteria which can cause doggie odor as well as bacterial infections and allergens creating a healthier environment for your dog.

    The NanoSphere is a Bluesign approved technology that is compliant with global environmental, health and safety (EHS) standards. The Bluesign criteria guarantees that the most economical use of resources and the greatest possible exclusion of substances harmful to human/environmental health have been maintained in the manufacturing of the Dog Gone Smart bed.

    All fabrics are non-toxic, pet safe and environmentally friendly and earned the Bluesign® health seal of approval. These Beds are extremely resistant to liquids, dirt and coat oil. Contains ActiveSilver, a permanent antimicrobial that kills bacteria and viruses.






    Dog Training Obedience Clicker, How Does It Work?

    What is a clicker?
    A clicker is a small device that you can carry easily, attach to a jacket, or keep in a pocket. When you press on it, it makes a distinctive clicking sound. They are sold at pet supply places, quite inexpensively and usually in groups, as it’s handy to have several around.

    You can click a clicker much faster than you can say “Good!” or any other praise word. I have experimented with making a clicking noise with my mouth, and have found that it’s much slower than clicking a clicker. Since dogs can do a lot of different things in a short time period, the faster your click, the more likely you are to have indicated the exact behavior you wanted to reward.

    One of the most important aspects of animal training is the timing. In order for the dog to learn that a certain behavior gets him a reinforcement, the reinforcement must be delivered while the behavior is taken place. The more accurate we are, the easier it is for the dog to learn. The more we postpone the reinforcement , the less is the ability to associate between the behavior and the consequence. For example, if I want to teach my dog to sit, I need to deliver the treat (reinforcer) right as the dog’s behind touches the ground. This is where the clicker comes in: by establishing a connection between the “click” and the treat, I can manage to deliver information to the dog immediately.
    How does the training clicker work?
    We create an association between a “click” and a treat. We click and immediately treat, we click and treat. We repeat this dozens of times and the dog realizes “ok , when I hear this sound, I get a good thing”. Now, when this association is made, we can use this click to deliver information to the dog about his behavior. We will click the clicker the instant a behavior we want occurs. The dog sits, we click immediately when the dog’s behind hits the ground and deliver the reinforcer right after – the dog realizes “ok – putting my behind on the ground is good”. The clicker eliminates the need to deliver the treat as fast as possible. It allows for a gap or bridge between the behavior and the reinforcer.

    It is important to note that once the association is established, it is important that every click is always followed by a treat. If you click and you do not treat, you weaken the association.

    The reinforcer does not have to be food. Many dogs would love to work for a game of tug, or a Frisbee throw. The reinforcer that comes after the click can be anything the dog wants at the moment and it is important to know your dog and what he/she loves.