Mike Stone, Absolute K9’s Founder and 3 time Schutzhund training champion doesn’t discriminate by breed or a pet’s upbringing. Mike’s motto is simple and his methods prove: There are not bad dogs…just dogs that have yet to be trained.
Today, pit bull owners across America can have a reason to be proud of their breed. Layla, a pitbull mix, and rescue dog, is now returning the favor to the family that saved her; saving the life of their 6 year old son with a deadly allergy to peanuts.
If you have a pit bull and have questions or comments, please say hello and post below!]]>
Please reach out to us with any questions.]]>
In addition to causing irritation, ticks transmit serious diseases including Lyme disease and tularemia, which can affect a person or animal’s health for months or even years. According to the Director of San Diego County Department of Environmental Health, Gary Erbeck, people who visit grassy, brushy, or wooded areas with their dogs should take special care to avoid picking up ticks.
Prevention Tips: Keeping ticks off your dog and yourself
What to do if you find a tick on your dog
The most important thing to remember is that you must remove the entire body of the tick as soon as possible to reduce the risk of injury or illness caused by these pesky insects. To remove the entire body of a tick you can use a tick scoop, available at pet stores, or you can use tweezers, grasping the tick’s head as close to the skin as possible and firmly but smoothly pulling it straight out from the area. (Note: some people recommend against using tweezers for the risk of breaking the tick in the skin. You can also use clean and disinfected fingers to do the same action).
Do not twist, squeeze, or jerk the tick because that may cause the tick to break, leaving the mouth or head of the tick still lodged onto the skin. Remaining parts of a tick must be removed or they can cause infection. If the head does break off, you can use a sterile needle to remove the head much as you would remove a splinter from under the skin. Be sure to wash and disinfect the bite area and your hands with antiseptic wash and apply antibiotic ointment to the bite site.
Do not apply heat via a lit match or lighter to the tick. Not only has this been found ineffective, it can cause serious burn injuries to you and your dog. Ticks do not drown in water, but they do drown in rubbing alcohol. Do not crush a tick, as that can release disease.
If you have any questions about ticks or tick prevention in San Diego, contact our animal experts at Absolute K9 today.]]>
Compared to people, dogs are not very efficient at staying cool. As such, they are more susceptible to overheating. With a normal body temperature higher than ours, 100 to 102.5 compared to our 98.6, dogs also have smaller sweat glands (in their paws and nose) and pant to cool down. In warmer months, it is particularly important to provide your dog with fresh water at all times, as drinking cool water helps them to cool down.
If you dog will be outside, either in the backyard or on an outing, try to maximize time spent in the shade and bring your dog in during the hottest hours of the day. Dogs should not be confined to a sunny area and left alone on hot days.
Exercise your dog in the early morning or later at night, when the temperature is cooler and the sun is not so strong.
Minimize your dog’s time in the car. While it is excellent that dogs are more a part of our everyday lives (i.e. coming along on errands, family vacations, etc), it can be deadly for dogs to remain unattended in a car on a hot day. Never leave your dog unattended in a car on a hot day. Parking your car in the shade and cracking the windows is not enough to prevent the car from becoming dangerously hot. On a hot day, the temperature in a car can rise 40 degrees per hour, with an 80 percent increase in the first 30 minutes. That means an 85-degree day can quickly create a 102-degree car during your run into the grocery store!
If you must leave your dog in the car, bring two keys with you: one to leave the car running with the air conditioner on for the dog, and the other to unlock the door when you return.
Be aware of the signs of heatstroke in your dog:
If you notice any of these symptoms of overheating and heat exhaustion in your dog, slowly reduce their body temperature by taking them into the shade or an air-conditioned room, applying cold packs, and giving small amounts of cool water or ice to lick. Call your vet immediately.
Some dog breeds are more susceptible to heat injuries, including:
For the first five breeds on this list, those with double coats and those bred for colder climates, a good summer haircut and regular brushing are essential in the summer. Regular brushing helps to reduce extra heat-storing fur and is recommended for all dogs in the summer months. Don’t have your dog shaved down, however, as this can increase the risk of sunburn.
Protect your dog from sunburn
While many people don’t realize a dog can get sunburned, it is very common, especially in pale and shorter haired dogs. Any dog can suffer sunburn on their nose, the tips of the ears, the groin area, and the inside of the legs. The latter two areas can get burned even when a dog is walking, as the sunlight can reflect onto their underside off beach sand and sidewalks. Use a sunscreen approved for use on animals on your dog’s nose and ear tips. You can try to put it on their underside but they may lick it off.
Protect your dog’s paws
Dogs’ paws can get burned on virtually any surface on a hot day, including sidewalks, asphalt and sand. You can determine whether or not it is safe to walk on a surface by feeling the ground first with your hand. If it is too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog to walk on.
A beach “break”
Experts recommend leaving your dog at home on beach day unless you can assure a shady spot is to be found there. The hot sand reflects the sun and can overheat your dog (and you!) quickly. If you do decide to enjoy the beach on a hot day, make the trip short and make sure you have fresh water along, as salt water and the sun can dehydrate your dog.
Like children, dogs are at risk of drowning in pools when left unattended. Make sure to secure the pool area to keep your dog safe. It is wise to teach your dog how to swim and where the steps and/or ladder are located in case she does jump in. Always supervise your dog if you let them play in the pool.
That said, kiddie pools and sprinklers are excellent ways to help your dog cool off in the summer.
For more ways to keep your dog happy and healthy in the summer, contact our dog experts at Absolute K9 today.
Congratulations on adding a new companion to your family! Having a pet will likely bring you joys you have never before experienced! However, pet ownership should not be taken lightly: it takes time, patience, and lots of training (of both you and your new four-legged friend!). If you have just adopted a new pet, contact us to learn more about dog training, which can set you up for a successful life with your new pet.
Pet Ownership 101
If you have just brought home your first pet, you may be wondering: “Okay, now what do I do?!?!” It is important to first learn about your dog’s essential needs:
Proper food is key to a happy and healthy pup. It is important to ask your vet or a trainer what kind of food is best for your dog and how much you should feed, given your dog’s age, size, breed, and health.
Quality Dog Food: All dog foods are not created equal. Some have fillers, allergens, and other ingredients better avoided. Some are for growing puppies and others are for sedentary seniors. Some are for big dogs and others are for toy breeds.
Dog Food Quantity: It is important to make sure you are not overfeeding your new dog. Remember that snacks and treats contribute to your dog’s total caloric intake. It is best not to give table scraps; doing so increases the risk of obesity, tummy upsets, begging, and other undesirable effects.
Studies show that 20 to 40 percent of all household pets are overweight, which increases their risk of disease, just as it does in humans.
Playing and socialization:
It is important to understand that dogs are social animals and will not thrive in a situation where they are left alone or separated from their pack most of the time. Dogs need playtime and social interaction. They also need outlets for their energy and their natural instincts, such as tugging and chewing. For play, take a trip to the pet store to find some safe toys. Every dog has a different preference for toys. Some love nothing more than to stuff their face with tennis balls and beg you to play, while others prefer soft plush toys, nearly indestructible solid rubber tug toys, ropes, or chew toys. Make sure whatever toys you select, you ensure they have no small swallowable parts and that you supervise your dog during play with these toys.
A Healthy Hound:
After bringing home your new dog, it is important to schedule a visit to the vet within the first couple weeks of ownership. A vet visit can determine if your dog has any current health problems that need attention. A vet can also talk to you about the breed-specific risks affecting your new canine companion and how to reduce these risks. You should talk to your vet about local health risk prevention measures, including heartworm medications, flea and tick prevention, and vaccines. Animals are susceptible to a host of different diseases, some of which can be prevented through simple vaccines. Such preventable diseases range from bacterial and parasitic infections, to parvo, rabies, and more.
Puppies receive a series of shots, usually every 3 to 4 weeks until 16 weeks of age. Adult dogs often receive boosters of these shots annually or every few years. Your vet can tell you which vaccines your dog should receive and how often.
You should also talk to your vet about spaying or neutering your dog.
Outfit your dog:
Another way to protect your dog’s well being is to make sure they have proper ID so they can be reunited with you in the case they get loose and get lost. A dog should have a comfortable and secure collar with current identification tags, including your name and the best phone number to reach you. It is also a very good idea to get your dog microchipped. A microchip is a tiny chip inserted just under the dog’s skin. This chip contains information about you. When your dog is lost, any animal shelter or vet can scan this chip and help reunite you with your lost pet.
Start training right away:
Those first hours and days with your dog are important in helping him or her learn how to be a member of your pack. They need to learn where to go to the bathroom, what behaviors are acceptable and not, and much more. Fortunately, we can help you with all of this. Our experienced trainers at Absolute K9 can talk with you about your new pet and determine the best way for you to train them and get the most out of your new pet ownership! Contact us today to learn more about training your new dog.]]>
Most pets adjust to small changes easily, but bigger changes—such as moving or welcoming a new pet to your home—can require extra energy to minimize your pet’s stress and anxiety.
Avoiding the Move Blues
Moving—whether across the street or across the continent—can be stressful for pets. You can help them adjust and acclimate with these simple steps:
Resident Pet Meets Newcomer
Even for the most friendly of pets, meeting another animal in their territory can be stressful. Getting used to this new pet’s sights, sounds and smells and determining who ranks where in the pack can cause some peculiar and sometimes problematic behaviors in both animals. With a little patience and a good plan, your resident and new pets can be the best of pals in no time. When introducing a new pet into your home:
How to Avoid Anxiety in your Pet
If you are having trouble or have additional questions about moving or introducing a new animal, please contact us at Absolute K9. Our trainers would be happy to help you find a solution to any pet problem.]]>
If you decide to bring your favorite four-legger on your next adventure, here are a few tips to help you make the journey a success.
Stage One: Trip Planning
When planning out your travel and your lodging, be sure to do the following:
Is your lodging pet-friendly?
Flying with Fido?
Stage Two: Trip Preparation
Getting your pet travel ready:
What to Pack. Here is a pet travel checklist of things you may need to bring along on your adventure:
Stage Three: Adventure Commence!
Now that you are all ready to load up the gang and hit the road, there are just a few more tips to remember.
Avoid Tummy Troubles! Traveling with a sick pet is no fun for anyone. If your pet is not used to travel, try these steps:
Relax, you made it! Once you have made it to your destination, let your pet explore their new environment. Stay with your pet until he or she is calm and settled in. If you are staying in a hotel and you have to leave your pet in the room for a short time alone, make sure to hang the “Do Not Disturb” sign and call housekeeping to confirm that no one should enter the room.
Of course, if there is a trip that you just can’t bring your furry friend along for, AbsoluteK9 and Snug Pet Resort have a variety of boarding options to accommodate your schedule. Contact us anytime.]]>
What is cancer?
The basic biological characteristics of cancer are the same for our pets as they are for humans. As in humans, cancer can affect virtually any organ or system in an animal’s body, from the bladder to the blood. Healthy cells go through a cycle in which they grow and multiply as the body requires. Sometimes, abnormal cells can grow and divide at uncontrolled and unhealthy rates, resulting in tumors and masses. These growths can be benign (non-cancerous), or they can be malignant (cancerous). In other cases, cancer cells do not form masses, but they invade the blood, causing the cancer to travel throughout the body.
My dog has a lump, is it cancer?
Not all lumps and bumps on dogs or cats are cancerous. To know for sure, you need to have your animal checked out by a veterinarian. Some lumps and bumps are just masses of fatty tissue (called lipomas) and are common and non-cancerous. For cat owners, it is important to monitor the site of a vaccine injection, as a bump there can signal a problem. Sometimes a dog or cat can have cancer without ever developing a noticeable lump or bump.
Is my pet at risk?
Cancer is the #1 disease-related cause of death for our furry friends. Diseases, including cancer, don’t discriminate: they can affect any breed or type of dog, though some breeds are more susceptible to certain cancers than other breeds. Most dog cancers affect adult and senior dogs, though dogs of any age can be affected. Early detection is crucial, so it is important to talk to your vet about the risk factors for pet cancer in your animal.
What are the symptoms of pet cancer?
While some animals will not exhibit any outward signs of cancer, many pets that develop cancer will display some or all of the following characteristics:
How can I be proactive about pet cancer?
Detecting pet cancer early can greatly increase the chances of successful treatment and recovery. Pet health experts recommend bi-annual wellness exams and yearly blood screenings, which can help to catch problems before they become difficult or impossible to treat.
Is pet cancer treatable?
In many cases, and especially when the cancer is caught early, pet cancer IS treatable. Thanks to veterinary medical advances, there are many options in treating pet cancers including surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Treatment for pet cancer depends on many factors including the type of cancer, how far the cancer has progressed, the age of the animal, and more. It is best to speak with a vet, like the specialists at the Snug Animal Hospital, to learn about possible pet cancer treatments.
More than 2,000 people from as far away as Minnesota and Hawaii flocked to this event held on the shores of Imperial Beach, San Diego. Among these spectators were actors Owen Wilson, George Lopez, and George the Great Dane, all premiering in a new dog movie called Marmaduke, opening Jun 4, 2010.
This surf competition attracted 65 canines small and large, all competing for a chance to take home the gold in one of the most beloved sports in San Diego: surfing. Each of these dogs had ten minutes to strut their stuff in the surf, showing off their two best wave rides as judges weighed in on their confidence, ride length, and general ability to “grip it and rip it” and “hang 20.”
For some of these dogs, Saturday was their first time surfing, while others had previously competed in Loews Coronado Bay Resort Surf Dog competitions or elsewhere.
Thousands of spectators thronged to get a closer look at these amazing canines, which competed in three heats: one for small dogs, one for big dogs, and one for tandem dog and human rides.
Here is the breakdown of our big winners of this year’s surf dog competition:
Heat One: The Small Dogs
Smallest dog to enter the contest was Bobby Gorgeous, a 5-pound Pomeranian from Hawaii.
The winner was Abbie, an Australian kelpie hailing from North County, who took some long rides on a few tasty waves to clinch her spot as top dog. Runners up were Shih Tzu Toby and a Nova Scotia Duck Trolling Retriever named Torri.
Heat Two: The Big Dogs
A Chesapeake Bay Retriever named Stanley surfed into first place in the big dog competition. In second place came the biggest dog to enter this year’s dog surf contest: Nani, an 85-pound Bernese Mountain Dog. Taking third was Kalani, a Golden Retriever who also placed in the third heat.
Heat Three: Tandem Dog-Human Surfing
In the last heat, a Golden Retriever duo dubbed the Twisted Sisters took first; Buddy, a Jack Russell terrier, and his human dad took second; and Pudge, an English Bulldog, and his dad took third.
Each of these surfing canines earned exclusive bragging rights both at the dog park and in the surf line up. The winners from each heat also won a pet vacation at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort.
Absolute K9 partnered with Loews to make this year’s dog surfing contest possible, contributing to the $45,000 this fundraiser has earned since 2005.
For pictures from the Dog Surfing Competition Click Here.]]>
Those who see this film witness the endearing and hilarious adventures of this oversized lovable canine as he moves from Kansas to California and awkwardly attempts to fit in as the new kid in town. Between romping through the dog park and entering an Orange County surfing competition, Marmaduke puts his family through a series of canine calamities, running the gamut from attempting to dive into the kitchen sink to steamrolling the boss. Twice.
What’s more, this dog leaps out of bathtubs, counter-surfs to snatch up the family’s feast, sends his feline friend flying across rooms, ingests hallucinogens, and practically devours an entire floor of his human family’s home—from couches to curtains and everything in between.
While Marmaduke’s misadventures are hilarious on-screen, most dog owners would be hard pressed to find the humor in such behaviors from their own dog. For those of us who are all too familiar with Marmaduke’s methods, we can relate to the Winslow’s struggle, which is made worse in the film when Marmaduke decides to run away from home and the family is forced to pile in the family car to go in search of their wayward dog.
If your dog reminds you a little too much of Marmaduke, we can help. Whether your Marmaduke is a 200-pound Great Dane or a 10-pound Chihuahua, we can help curb his unruly behavior—from leash pulling, to barking, to some of the more ridiculous stunts portrayed in this dog movie. We work with dogs of all shapes, sizes, ages, and temperaments, helping to reign in the unruliness and restore some structure and peace to your family life. We can help any dog and their family, no matter the issue.
Perhaps in the Marmaduke sequel, the Winslows will head south to San Diego for a visit to Absolute K9 and this dog will be magically transformed from a crazy canine to a well-behaved member of his family. While the new and improved Marmaduke may not be as funny to watch on screen, you can guarantee any real-life Winslows would be pleased to have such a happy ending.
Contact us today.]]>