Why Is My Dog Itchy in the Winter?

By: Orvis Staff
If your dog is scratching a lot, there may be a problem. Photos courtesy Katherine, Kansas City

Not long after the winter season’s first frost, comes the dry, itchy skin—for people and their dogs. Usually, your best friend is itchy in the winter for the exact same reasons you are, and the soothing fixes are similar. Though you can’t slather moisturizing lotion on a thick coat of fur, there are other ways to help. Read on to learn why your dog often scratches through the winter months, and how you can minimize her discomfort.


Read More

Why Can’t My Dog Get Comfortable Lying Down?

By: Orvis Staff
Photos courtesy  Orvis.com

One of the coziest sights is a dog curled up in his dog bed, or comfy on the couch fast asleep. But what about when your dog can’t get comfortable lying down? Dogs circling before they lie down is normal, but if you notice your dog struggling to get comfortable, lying in an unusual position, or getting up and down frequently, it could be a sign of something amiss—from easy-fix issues to serious health problems. Here are the most common reasons dogs have difficulty lying down and getting comfortable, and what you can do to help:


Read More

Why Do Dogs Run Away?

By: Orvis Staff

A runaway dog can be a stressful situation for all involved.

Photo by: Janie, Midland

Understanding why dogs run away can be tough. After all, home is where the loving (and spoiling) happens. The behind-the-ear scratches. The special dog treats. The games of fetch in the backyard. But no matter how much your dog adores you and the homestead, there’s always a chance she’ll make a break for the door or an opening in the fence. Learning why dogs run away can help prevent a great canine escape, and help guide your search should your best friend ever successfully dash off. Here are the top reasons dogs run away:


Read More

Creating a Dog Drool-Protected Home

By: Orvis Staff

Photo by: Kathryn, Smithfield

Owning a dog makes life a good measure happier—and messier. Constant fur to vacuum, muddy paws to manage, and full-body fur shakes after rainy walks. But the slimiest canine mess is the dreaded dog drool puddle. Your dog puts your devotion to the test when you sit on a drool-soaked couch cushion, or slide across the hardwood floor on a patch of slobber. The good news is, even if your best friend is a copious drooler, it’s possible to keep the mess to a minimum. Here’s a primer on all things dog drool and how to protect your home from unwelcome goo.


Read More

Why Do Dogs Tilt Their Heads?

Murph's quizzical look could have one of several meanings.

Photo by: Paul Fersen

There’s something irresistible about that quizzical head cock in a dog—the tilted noggin, with her eyes and ears akimbo: she looks as though she’s listening with a mixture of attention, excitement, and curiosity, and it’s beyond adorable. While there’s no research to back this up, it’s a safe bet that some people choose to get a dog because of it—they observe a puppy tilting her head to one side and can’t wait to bring home their new best friend with this endearing habit. So why do dogs tilt their heads? There’s a scarcity of research on the subject, but let’s explore some of the top scientific theories.


Read More

A Personalized Dog Collar: The Best Way to Find a Lost Dog

Written by: Deb German
img_0154
Teddy Blue and Maggie Photo courtesy of Deb German

The single best way to find your lost dog is to outfit her in a personalized dog collar, embroidered or engraved with your phone number, before she goes missing. The reason is simple: the person who finds her is most likely to check her collar or tags first, and call the number on them before making ‘found dog’ posters or fliers, or dropping her at the local animal shelter. That one phone call will lead a good Samaritan instead directly to you, and hopefully your pal will be back in your arms again in short order. A redundant system is better still—adding ID hang tags to your dog’s collar and having her microchipped are smart backups.


Read More

Five Tips and Five FAQs for the New Puppy Owner

By: Deb German
A puppy is a big responsibility, and mistakes you make early can have long-lasting consequences. Photo by Staci, Northglenn

It is so exciting to bring a new puppy home. What’s not to love about a warm, fluffy, wriggling mass of energy who delights in playing with her humans and exploring her new surroundings in search of trouble? A puppy brings so much life and energy to a household, it’s easy to get carried away, overindulging her exuberant behavior and insatiable desire for attention. While that behavior might be novel and charming now, it’s not going to be so cute when your dog becomes an out-of-control, full-grown dog.

You should certainly enjoy your new puppy and her hilarious antics, but need to set the groundwork to help her develop into a well-adjusted, obedient adult dog. Hopefully by now you will have read a book or two about raising and training a dog and have some idea about needed structure and discipline. But if you’re like most new puppy owners, you may have lapses where you don’t follow the advice of experts. Here are some guidelines you should never ignore:


Read More

Five Common Questions About Labrador Retrievers

By: Orvis Staff
Photo by Tim Bronson

Among the most beloved, ubiquitous, and recognizable dog breeds, the enthusiastic and sociable Labrador Retriever not only makes an excellent pet, but is also an outstanding working dog. Originally bred as a water-retrieving hunting dog, the Lab possesses a combination of intelligence and eagerness to please his humans, making him highly trainable for a wide variety of work. Long pressed into service aiding those with disabilities, the Lab also has an excellent sense of smell, making him invaluable for police and military work.


Read More