I want to start cooking for my dog and get him off commercial diets. Any advice?

Preparing a diet at home for your dog can be a rewarding task, but caution must be taken to do so correctly. Home-prepared diets tend to be highly digestible and can provide high-quality nutrition. However, home-prepared diets can be more expensive, can provide variable nutrition, and take considerable time and care to ensure they are adequate for your dog’s health.

 

Dogs are omnivores and require a diet that consists of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water in correct proportions. …

Is it O.K. to give my dog rawhides to chew?

Yes. There appear to be no negative effects of offering rawhide chews. Feeding rawhide chews is an effective method of maintaining dental health, specifically in preventing gingivitis. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums due to bacterial plaque. Chewing rawhides helps keep plaque from forming by scraping teeth to clean them. Rawhides can also prevent or decrease the severity of periodontal disease (gum disease). Gum disease is seen over a long period of time as a buildup of plaque, tartar, …

I want to smoke beef bones and sell them to my customers for their dogs. Is this safe?

Cooked bones, including smoked, should not be fed to dogs. The bones can splinter from the cooking process which causes the bones to harden and become brittle; splintering bones can cause severe damage to a dog. Dogs can cut their mouths, pierce their stomach lining, and possibly block the intestines. 

 

Some raw bones can be fed because they will not splinter; however, some meat should be left on the bones to act as a cushion. The major bones of support …

Are shock collars harmful to dogs?

Shock collars (also called bark collars) are a form of punishment and work by remotely delivering an electric shock to the neck. They do cause some pain, which can vary depending upon the intensity of the shock given. While this shock may not cause physical harm, it can cause psychological damage to a dog when used incorrectly, as it relies on very precise timing to deliver the punishment effectively. 

Shock collars differ in the strength of shock they deliver and …

My dog's skin is flaking, and fur is falling out. Is that because of the food?

Food allergies are typically presented in dogs with the itching of the skin. However, other signs of food allergies can vary depending on the severity between animals.

The best way to determine if your dog is suffering from a food allergy is to see your veterinarian. If your veterinarian rules out infection or other diseases, he or she will then do an “elimination.” This is a diet that is nutritionally complete, yet it does not contain any of the ingredients …

I think my dog ate some mushrooms in our backyard. Will they hurt him?

Wild mushrooms can be extremely poisonous to animals and humans, especially if you do not know what type of mushroom was eaten. Your dog should be taken to a veterinarian immediately. Take a sample of the mushroom eaten (in a wet paper towel or a paper bag) and if your dog has vomited, take that with you, too. Signs of mushroom poisoning can be diarrhea, lethargy, or jaundice. Other effects of mushroom poisoning can include unusual changes in behavior such …