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My dog doesn't like having his claws clipped Play this video 4:43
My dog doesn't like having his claws clipped Clipping claws is a normal part of animal husbandry but what do you do if your dog doesn't like having his claws clipped? This is a particular problem for retired Greyhounds because racing Greyhounds use their claws to grip the track. Retired Greyhounds, therefore, will often present with overly long claws and will need them gradually clipping back to ensure the 'quick' also gradually recedes. In this video, Jo Blake (previous Operations Manager at the Greyhound Trust) offers some helpful advice on how to enable your dog to feel more comfortable with their claws being cared for. Please bear in mind that this training may take several sessions over weeks or months, it may take a few sessions until you get to a 'clipping just one claw' session but keep it gradual and your claw clipping sessions will be smoother from then on!

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Bandaging dog paws

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Dogs are not like people. Dogs can be cuter, funnier, more honest and loving. That goes without saying. But unlike people, you can’t tell your dog to keep that bandage on all the time. We all know how difficult it is playing with an injured dog, but if your dog goes through a surgery or has an injury, you’ll need to bandage that injured limb yourself. Easier said than done, right? With all that fluffy fur, flexible body, and the shape of their paw, good luck trying to keep that bandage from coming off.

To see how to bandage paws, watch our Bandaging Dog Paws video.

Good Materials
To keep the bandage on despite the dog’s best efforts to throw it off, chew at it, and get it dirty, you’ll need a sound strategy. Your strategy should combine good materials, excellent technique, and applying the right amount of pressure to make it tricky even for the pooch to shake it off. For materials, you should have cotton wadding, sterile dressing pads, gauze for wrapping, elastic bandages preferably the ones that are self-adhesive, and an adhesive tape. You can get all these materials online or from your vet clinic.

Bandaging Technique
To achieve your goal of bandaging the dog’s paw the right way and keeping that bandage on you’ll need to apply the right tension. Too tight and it will hurt the dog, too loose and it will slip off a few minutes later. This is vital just like food for sensitive stomach. The golden rule here is to use layers of cotton wads and wrap them with gauze using moderate pressure. When done slip a finger under the bandage. If the dressing grips your finger but allows you to touch the dog’s paw, then you’ve done it right.

Keeping it on
Now that you know how to bandage the paw, you need to know how to keep it on. For starters make sure the dog’s paw is clean and dry. Keep him indoors most of the time to keep the bandage from getting dirty. You can even get them an orthopedic dog bed so they can rest and heal faster. If you have to take the dog out, cover the bandage with a plastic bag. If the dog tends to chew at the bandage check if it’s too tight then use an Elizabethan collar (aka the 'cone of shame'!) to stop him gnawing it off.

Taking care of your dog’s injured paw requires a lot of patience and skill. But if you follow these tips you’ll pull it off and prevent the dog from pulling it off.

We have a number of Dog First Aid videos, including

What you should keep in a Canine First Aid Kit

Emergency Tail Bandaging

CPR for dogs

and How to remove Ticks safely

5 ways to dog-proof your living room

Friday, 24 August 2018

It's great when our four-legged friends join us in the living room, with some of us even encouraging them to snuggle up on the sofa with us on an evening. As a pet-owner, your living room can always be susceptible to shredded upholstery and stained carpets, so knowing how to dog-proof the area will make life a lot easier — and less stressful! — for you both.

So, whether you’ve just bought a plush new sofa, or are sick of hoovering fur off your current one, here are five ways to effectively dog-proof your living room.

Preserve your sofa 

Dogs love digging, and for some of our furry friends, it certainly doesn’t stop when they come indoors. If your dog scratches your sofa it can cause significant damage, whether it’s upholstered fabric or leather. Giving them a special bed of their own to settle down onto will reduce the likelihood of your sofa being shredded — our training video for teaching your dog to settle on their bed might help with this.

However, if you allow your dog onto the sofa with you, make sure you’re keeping it looking and smelling fresh and clean. Laying down a slip cover can instantly protect your sofa from being covered in fur. If you have a leather sofa, then you may find it needs some occasional maintenance to keep it in good condition: this leather cleaning kit from Timeless Chesterfields should erase any muddy prints or scents. And with the latter including both a protection cream and soft cleaner, there’s no need for a costly professional to come do it for you!

Hide all cables

One of the biggest hazards to your dog is the amount of live wires that’ll be linked up to various devices in your living room. Securing any loose wires with a protective casing, like this D-Line multi cable cover from ScrewFix, will stop your pet from getting to any cables — so they stay safe and you can still watch your favourite soaps! However, if floor-level wires are still proving an interest to them after this, you may need to pay a professional to mount your TV and hide the cables behind the wall. This will remove all danger of your dog managing to get hold of them, so you’ll have complete peace of mind.

Choose stain-resistant flooring

If you’re going to allow your dog into your living room, it’s sensible to have easy-clean flooring. So, if you’re planning an upgrade in the near future, switching out your carpet for a stain-resistant one, like this range from Carpet World, will ensure any accidents or mud trails will be easy to clean. There’s plenty of colour and loop pile options to choose from, so you can still achieve your dream living room look.

However, if you’re not planning a living room overhaul anytime soon, adding a large fluffy rug can encourage them to sit on this rather than your cream carpet. But, to significantly reduce the chances of outdoor stains transferring to your living room, be sure to wipe and wash their paws thoroughly before they come into the house after a mucky day out.

Store hazards on shelves 

Some dogs will be tempted to chew almost anything, so keep anything dangerous on a high shelf. Getting down to their level and taking a look around is a useful tool for identifying possible temptations and hazards at their eye-level.

Small items like kids toys, houseplants and pens are among some of the things that seem less obvious to dog-proof in your living room, but they could also be the most hazardous. Remote controls and lit candles also pose a big risk to your dog, so make sure everybody knows not to leave these in reach, no matter how short a time your pet would be left unattended with them.

Put up a fire guard

In the winter months, dogs are just as fond of a warm cosy fire as us humans, so don’t be surprised to see them huddled round the fireplace. However, this is an obvious danger to them — particularly if you have a curious and inquisitive pet!

Remove the danger of burns and accidents by putting up a fire guard, like this extendable one from Baby Travel, which will prevent your dog from being able to get too close to the fire from any angle. It adjusts to fit a range of fireplace sizes, so you don’t have to worry about your furry friend warming up by the open flames in winter. Just make sure your dog is always supervised whenever the fire is lit!

Dogs are curious and sociable animals, so it’s only natural that they’ll want to retreat to the living room to relax alongside you. Keep them safe while in the living room with our top five tips for dog-proofing it — best of all, it doesn’t have to mean diverting from your dream interior look!

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