12 Dog Diseases You Can Combat with Vaccination

Canine vaccination is as important as human vaccinations. It not only helps to keep the serious disease on the bay but also protects your dog’s immune system. Each state in the US has its own law regarding canine vaccination with the exception of Rabies. The vaccination for rabies is mandatory in all states. You can be sure that like Rabies, you can prevent other serious diseases by administering vaccination to your dogs.

Why Canine Vaccination is Important?

Vaccines contain antigens that mimic disease-causing organisms in a dog’s immune system. It prepares a dog's immune system to defend itself from any invasion of the disease-causing organisms. The antigen mildly stimulates the immune system of the dog by having it recognize its presence.
The American Animal Hospital Association's Canine Task Force considers the following dog vaccinations to be core:

  • Canine Parvovirus
  • Canine Distemper
  • Hepatitis
  • Rabies

The non-core canine vaccines, but still important, include

  • Bordetella
  • Canine Influenza (dog flu)
  • Leptospirosis
  • Lyme vaccine

12 Dog Diseases that can be prevented with Vaccine
Here is the list of 12 dangerous canine diseases that can be prevented by timely vaccination.

Rabies (Zoonotic in nature)

Rabies is a viral disease that causes inflammation of the brain. It’s primarily passed to dogs through a bite from an infected dog or wild animals such as bats, raccoons, skunks, foxes, etc. It can easily transmit through a scratch or when infected saliva makes contact with mucous membranes or an open, fresh wound.

Rabies is commonly treated by Nobivac®- Canine 1-DAPPv vaccine, a modified live virus vaccine for the vaccination of healthy dogs as an aid in the prevention of disease caused by canine distemper virus, adenovirus type 1 (hepatitis), and adenovirus type 2 (respiratory disease), canine parainfluenza virus, and canine parvovirus.

The only remedy for rabies is the proper vaccination. Dogs should be vaccinated between 3 and 6 months of age. They need a booster one year from that date. They’re generally vaccinated every three years.

Canine parvovirus infection ("parvo")

Parvo is a highly contagious virus that causes an infectious gastrointestinal (GI) illness in puppies and young dogs. The deadly virus spreads either by direct contact with an infected dog or through feces. The Parvovirus can survive at room temperature for months hence it can easily transmit to dogs. Check for telltale signs such as bloody diarrhea, lethargy, anorexia, fever, vomiting, etc. in dogs.

Vaccines for the parvovirus are recommended for all puppies and are usually given in a series of three shots when the pup is between 6-to-8 weeks old, again at 10-to-12 weeks, and at 14-to-16 weeks. Like rabies, a booster shot is administered one year later and every 3 years after that.

Vaccines for the parvovirus are recommended for all puppies and are usually given in a series of three shots when the pup is between 6-to-8 weeks old, again at 10-to-12 weeks, and at 14-to-16 weeks. Like rabies, a booster shot is administered one year later and every 3 years after that.

Canine distemper

Canine distemper is a viral disease caused by a virus that attacks the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems of dogs. It not only affects dogs but also wild animals. It’s a contagious and serious disease that can easily transmit from wild animals to dogs.


Puppies and dogs most often become infected through airborne exposure (through sneezing or coughing) to the virus from an infected dog or wild animal. Infected dogs often develop watery to pus-like discharge from their eyes followed by a fever, nasal discharge, coughing, lethargy, reduced appetite, and vomiting.


You should administer a distemper shot to puppies at six to eight weeks of age. All dogs need a booster every 3 years or more often.

Leptospirosis (Zoonotic in nature)

Leptospirosis is caused by spiral-shaped bacteria called leptospires that live in water or warm, wet soil. Initial signs of leptospirosis in dogs include fever, lethargy, and lack of appetite. Experts say that any dog that regularly goes outside the home is potentially at risk of contracting this disease.

It takes about 4-12 days for the bacteria to incubate. The four-serovar vaccine is currently the only vaccine recommended by experts for Leptospirosis. Revaccinating annually is often needed to maintain the best immunity.

Canine adenovirus-2

Canine adenovirus type 2 (CAV-2) is related to the hepatitis virus, canine adenovirus type 1 (CAV-1). It leads to recessive or mild respiratory tract infections and may cause infectious laryngotracheitis and symptoms of pneumonia. It’s also one of the causes of infectious tracheobronchitis, also known as canine cough.

The joint vaccine is a core vaccine that contains live attenuated canine distemper virus, canine adenovirus (CAV-2), canine parvovirus (C154), and canine parainfluenza virus. A joint vaccine is commonly administered to dogs to prevent CAV-2 infection.

Canine parainfluenza

Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV) is a highly contagious respiratory virus common in dogs. It may develop in situations where large groups of dogs are close together for a period of time. CPIV is also one of the most common pathogens of infectious tracheobronchitis, also known as canine cough. It shouldn’t be mistaken with kennel cough. Although the respiratory signs may resemble those of canine influenza and CAV-2, they are unrelated viruses and require different vaccines for protection.

Canine enteric coronavirus

Canine coronavirus (CCoV) is an enveloped, positive-sense, single-stranded RNA virus which is a member of the species Alphacoronavirus 1. Most dogs with canine coronavirus are contracted by oral contact with infected fecal matter. A dog may also become infected by eating from contaminated food bowls or by direct contact with an infected dog.

Be wary, canine coronavirus (CCoV) is not the same virus as SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19. Hence, the vaccine for CCoV should be used for treating COVID-19. The vaccine for CCoV is readily available but it’s not recommended for all dogs and will be administered based on your dog's lifestyle and risk assessment.

Canine influenza

Canine influenza or Dog Flu is influenza occurring in dogs that are caused by varieties of influenza virus A, such as equine influenza virus (H3N8). The Dog flu is airborne; respiratory secretions escape into the environment in the form of coughing, barking, and sneezing, where they are then inhaled by a new canine host. 

The vaccine for Canine influenza is easily available. This vaccine must be given twice initially with a two-week break, then annually thereafter.

Lyme disease

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection (Lyme borreliosis) caused by the bite of flea and tick. The ticks that carry Lyme disease are especially likely to be found in tall grasses, thick brush, marshes, and woods. They easily jump into your dog’s coat.

The most common signs of Lyme disease include fever, loss of appetite, painful or swollen joints. The treatment includes antibiotics, usually for at least 30 days. As a preventive measure, you can check for flea and tick collar, vet-approved flea and tick preventive, and a vaccine.

Bordetellosis ("kennel cough")

Bordetella is the most common cause of kennel cough. Bordetella bronchiseptica is a bacterium that is associated with respiratory disease that causes inflammation of the trachea and bronchi.

The symptoms include a hacking cough, retching, sneezing, watery nasal discharge, pneumonia, inappetence, fever, etc.

Adult dogs that come into contact with large groups of other dogs should have a Bordetella vaccine annually.

Heartworm disease

Known as Dirofilaria immitis, the heartworm or dog heartworm is a parasitic roundworm that looks like a small thread-like creature. It spreads from the bite of an infected mosquito.

The symptoms include soft and dry cough, lethargy, weight loss, anorexia, difficulty in breathing, etc. 

It can be prevented with monthly chewable tablets; Ivermectin (sold under the brand names Heartgard, Iverhart, and several other generic versions), Milbemycin (Interceptor Flavor Tabs and Sentinel Flavor Tabs), and Moxidectin (ProHeart) administered as pills or chewable tablets.

Intestinal worms (roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, tapeworms, etc., some of which can also infect people)

The intestinal worm is common in dogs. There are various kinds of worms contracted by dogs over their lifetime. They mostly contract it from their mother in the womb, by ingesting contaminated soil (soil with feces), eating another infected animal, and fleas.

We have a detail information on infographics as well:


You can easily get your dog screened for worm infections and find proper treatments. Flea preventive measure is often used as a vaccine to prevent intestinal worm.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best pet hospital in Des Moines. Our certified veterinarian can help you with all the questions regarding canine vaccines and preventive measures for healthy dog life.

Safe Temperature for Dogs: How to prevent overheating?

Did you know that dogs can easily overheat when left in the sun? Like humans, dogs are prone to overheating and physical illness when the temperature rises above the normal.

There are many factors that determine the dog’s body temperature. One of the major reasons for overheating is the hot weather. If dogs are let out for a long time, they’ll quickly overheat and start dehydrating.

Dogs only sweat through sweat glands in the pads of their feet and noses. Unlike humans who sweat throughout the body, dogs lessen their body heat by continuous panting which isn't super-efficient so they can quickly become overheated.

Let’s learn more about overheating in dogs and how to control their temperature.

How to keep them safe from Overheating?

Here is how you can avoid your dog from overheating.

Never leave your pets in a parked car

Many pet owners choose to leave their pets inside the car! This can be fatal! You shouldn’t leave them inside a car even for a minute! Many owners claim that they keep the air conditioner on or windows open but this doesn’t help either. On a warm day, the temperatures inside a car can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85F day, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened can rise up to 102 F within 10 minutes.

It can easily lead to overheating and your pet may suffer irreversible organ damage or even die. It’s better to keep them on a leash and tie them somewhere near under the shade.

Watch the humidity

Dr. Barry Kellog, VMD of the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association claims that,

"It's important to remember that it's not just the ambient temperature, but also the humidity that can affect your pet. Animals pant to evaporate moisture from their lungs, which takes heat away from their body. If the humidity is too high, they are unable to cool themselves and their temperature will skyrocket to dangerous levels—very quickly."

Some easy ways to control humidity includes

  • Air conditioning
  • Fans
  • Replace Furnace / AC filters.
  • Take shorter or colder showers.

Limit exercise on hot days

Although your dog loves to play outside, you should consider limiting outdoor visits during summer. It’s better to avoid going out when the sun is up. Instead, you can switch the outdoor schedule to either early morning or in the evening. On a hot day the asphalt can get very hot that can burn your pet's sensitive paws. If you’re stepping outside during a hot day, consider carrying water with you to keep your dog from dehydrating. Use dog shoes and Vaseline to avoid heat burn.

If you often allow your do to exercise outside, you can consider bringing them in during summer.

Provide ample shade and water

Dogs often get dehydrated on a hot day. The lack of water consumption can easily lead to overheating and dehydration. Make sure you keep them away from the direct sun. Keep them inside and provide ample fresh cold water to keep their body heat in check. The best way to provide fresh water is by offering them a Frozen Treat Bowl. Make a solution of nutritious items and water and freeze them to make frozen kibble. The dogs enjoy eating them. This will help to keep them cool as well as provide enough nutrition.

Watch for signs of heatstroke

Overheating can invite heatstroke in dogs. This is why you shouldn’t let your dog stay outside for a longer duration of time. The signs of heatstroke include heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever, seizure, and unconsciousness.

The best way to avoid heatstroke is by setting up a pet’s pool in the backyard so your dog can stay inside the water. You can also wrap a wet towel around them to avoid overheating.

How to treat a pet suffering from heatstroke

When you notice that your dog is suffering from heatstroke, immediately move them into the shade or an air-conditioned area. Start applying ice packs or cold towels to their head, neck, and chest or run cool (not cold) water over them. Let them drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes.

If the problem seems persistent, consider taking them directly to a veterinarian.

How to measure dog temperature?

There are telltale signs that your dog is overheating; excessive panting, lying on the floor motionless, or slowed breathing. It could easily turn into a fever and can be detrimental to their health but there’s no easy way to say this. You need to take your dog’s temperature to determine if it’s really overheating.

The thermometer should be placed in its bum to measure body temperature. As it can often be difficult to keep your dog still, it’s best if two people together on this particular project.

Before placing the thermometer, you should lubricate it well with Vaseline.

Raise its tail and push the thermometer into its rectum with a twist. It should go in one-three inches, depending on the size of your dog.

Hold it in place for two minutes, then remove it, wipe it quickly, and read the temperature.

Dog’s Fever

Fever is common in dogs throughout the year. However, in summer the fever becomes more common because of overheating, dehydration, and lack of nutrition. The normal body temperature for dogs is between 101 and 102.5 F, compared to 97.6 to 99.6 F for humans. This implies that dogs may feel feverish even when its temperature is completely normal. A temperature of more than 103 F is considered a dog fever, although it can be 103 if a dog is very excited or stressed.

Be aware of the rising body temperature because when the temperature reaches 106 F, serious and fatal complications can occur.

Although there are no definite signs, some symptoms for fever in dogs include:

  • Lethargy
  • Depressed mood
  • Shivering
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Coughing
  • Nasal discharge

How to treat Dog’s Fever?

Here are some handy tips to treat dog fever.

Give them a bath

The first thing you can do is wiping their ears and paws with a tepid, wet cloth. This may help to bring its body temperature down.

Consider giving them a tepid bath. Ensure that the water isn’t ice cold. You can water a bit colder than lukewarm. Apply water to its ears, paws, chest, and abdomen. You can avoid using soap.

Hydrate them

Make sure your dog drinks a lot of water. Put fresh water in your dog’s water bowl and encourage them to drink water. This will help to prevent dehydration from fever.

Visit the Vet

Your vet probably has the medical history of your dog which will help to diagnose the fever. They can only offer a solution after conducting proper tests including a physical exam, urinalysis, blood count, or a biochemistry profile. This will help to ascertain the exact reason for the fever and provide a proper solution. Many times, the fever in dogs is caused by an underlying infection but simply overheat.

Here is a quick Infographics for the brief information.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best pet hospital in Des Moines. We provide both mobile and on-location emergency services for pets. Our certified veterinarian will ensure that your pet is immediately treated for overheating, dehydration, or fever. Get in touch with us to learn more about precautionary measures for overheating.

Get inspired with the best ideas & solutions for a life with dog

Living with a dog is probably the most fulfilling time ever. Animals complete your life in so many ways that you will feel gratitude towards them. Getting a new dog takes a lot of planning, effort, consistency, and training. Don't make it hard for your dogs to get comfortable, make sure you provide for them and make them a part of the family.

An estimated 49% to 68% of Americans are pet owners. Over 90%of them own dogs and cats.

Owning a dog is associated with lower rates of both cardiovascular disease (CVD) and mortality. When dogs can do so much for their human companion, why can’t humans do the same for their dogs?

Here are some best ideas and solutions to better your dog’s life

There are many ways you can better the life of your dog. Buying new toys, readjusting their kennel with heating pads and insulation for winter, buying new stainless steel eating bowls, etc. are a few of the ways you can provide for them. Here are some of the other ideas to better their life.

Make Life an Adventure

Dogs love adventure! They love exploring new things and places. You must have wondered why your dog always spring outside once you open the gate. They enjoy the feeling of going out and exploring either that be in your backyard, a park, or a hiker’s trail.

To make their outing fun, instead of taking the same walk every day, consider what your dog likes and find places that match its interests. It can be nearby forests, a new neighborhood, a new park, an unexplored hiking trail, etc. Be wary about the new place you wish to take your dog and assess the safety measures beforehand. You can also take them on a car or bike ride. It’s easier to keep them in an open-crate and ride on a bike if you have a small dog breed.

Let Them Decide

Most dogs love the freedom to make their own decisions. Let them explore certain places off-leash. We’re aware of the safety concerns –not to mention laws and common sense, but you can simply open your doors to let your dog loose in certain cases.

Don’t put them on a leash when you’re home. You should let them lose and enjoy their quality time exploring the backyard. When you’re in the park, you can let them off-leash. Take proper precautions before letting them free to ensure that they don’t land up in any trouble.

Encourage Playtime

We can’t emphasize enough how important playtime is to the canine’s happiness. Dogs are active beings and they enjoy using most of their time playing and exploring. Encourage more playtime in their daily schedule by introducing new games such as puzzles and finding clues that include treats. You can indulge them in “fetching game” too. Most dogs find things to do by themselves but they always enjoy the company of their human companion. Spend more time with them when you’re home! In addition to the obvious fun, the play also provides mental and physical exercise and socializing opportunities and leads to feelings of success as well as enhanced cooper

Make Toys and Chews a Priority

Dogs love playing with toys. It keeps them engaged for a long time! Each dog has its own favorite toy. Some love biting it while others like toying around with it. Enrich your dog’s playtime by introducing new and engaging toys. Such activities prevent canine boredom while providing mental exercise. Add new toys and puzzles in their life. These keep them engaged for a long time.

Chewing is another part of their daily to ensure good dental hygiene. Young dogs love chewing on things when they get new teeth. Don’t let them chew on hard surfaces which can distort normal teeth growth. Buy organically chewable such as all-natural pet chew made from Yak's Milk easily available in the www.urbanpetssupply.com online store.

Encourage Training and Socializing

The more you understand your dog, the easier it is to avoid misreading them and to successfully communicate with them. You can start brushing up on your dog body language by initiating training programs. You can hire a trainer or do it yourself by looking at the online tutorials. This helps to tame their behavior from an early age and provide a gateway to learn more about them.

Maintain a balanced diet

Maintaining a dog's daily nutritional intake is essential to ensure they remain healthy and safe throughout their life. Malnutrition or excess intake of minerals is common among most dogs. This can be prevented with proper diet chart provided by your veterinarian. Dog's daily nutrition should include 45% carbs, 25% fats, and 30% protein. Water and supplements such as Vitamin D and minerals are as important as their daily diet.

Vary their food by introducing different dog food brands after duration. Introduce them slowly to the new food brand.

Protect Them from What They Dislike

Many dogs hate the sound of crackers and loud noises, mostly during holidays. You need to ensure that you keep them away from any places close to creating loud noises. Few dogs hate to be around when there’s incessant noise from small kids. Assess if your dog isn’t stressed by the noise. If it is, you need to remove it from there.

Keep On Training

Training isn’t just a regime but a lifestyle. Nobody is ever done training a dog, and certainly not after one or two eight-week sessions. Training can vary from age and skills. There are only certain training you can conduct when your pup is young. Eventually, you’d need to introduce new training to instill new skills into your dog. Dogs that are well trained can be given more freedom, have more opportunities to socialize, and are able to go more places.

Learn To Rub the Right Way

Dogs love to snuggle with humans and being rubbed. They feel content when they’re being rubbed in exactly the right spot. You would need to find out the sweet-spots where they feel the most comfort such as their hips, neck, chest and the area just above their tail gently massaged. You can find different resources online where and how to rub them the right way.

Keep them tidy

Pet grooming is a cleansing process that enhances your pet’s appearance and keeps it stay hygienic and clean. The recent study concluded that grooming helps to keep the pets stress free and comfortable, especially those with long or heavy coats.

  • Some of the benefits of regular grooming include
  • Eradicate health problems
  • General cleanliness
  • Keeps vital organs in check
  • Increase physical appeal
  • Ensure a stress-free environment

 Removing tangles helps them defecate more easily. Keep their toenails short to allow for easier movement comfortably. Never shave them fully, this can create rashes on their skin and invite germs.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best doggy daycare in Urbandale. Our in-house vets and trainers can always help you with training and grooming your dog. Being a pet hospital in Urbandale, we can always provide immediate medical assistance to your dog.

Most Effective Tactics for Training Your Dogs At Home

It is easy to inhibit basic commands in dogs when they are young and intuitive. Dog trainers and behaviorists insist on providing basic commands for training your dogs at an early age to prevent any difficulty faced by them in later years.

Trainers suggest that you can start training your dog at home by adhering to effective tactics by engaging, rewarding, and positive disciplining them.

When it comes to training a canine, you could find many known techniques such as reward-based training, scientific training, operant conditioning, pack leaders, positive reinforcement, dominance theory, the Koehler method, Cesar’s way, etc. The list goes on. But one technique doesn't always fit all.

Regardless of which method and techniques you use, effective dog training boils down to one thing-controlling the consequences of your dog’s behavior. If you want to influence the way your dog behaves, you need to:

Reward behaviors you like.

Make sure behaviors you don’t like aren’t rewarded.

Most effective tactics for training your dogs at home

Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is the most talked about and popular method for canine training. It was popularized by trainers like Dawn Sylvia-Stasiewicz, who trained the Obamas’ dog, Bo.

The theory of “Positive Reinforcement” suggests that you should reward your dog for good behavior. If you reward them, they’re more likely to repeat good behavior. On the contrary, bad behavior does not get a reward or acknowledgment. However, the dog owners must practice positive disciplining to demotivate dogs from repeating bad behavior such as removal of rewards, like a toy or treat is taken away.

This method of training is often combined with clicker training which gives the dog a distinct sign of the exact moment the behavior was completed. Commands also need to be short and to the point such as Sit, Stay, and Come.

Start with continuous rewards every time your dog does the right thing. Then, gradually move to intermittent rewards as the behavior becomes consistent. It can also be easy to overfeed during the training, hence try using small treats or avoid using food every time you reward them.

It relies on four points:

  • Positive reinforcement –It reinforces their positive behavior.
  • Positive punishment -It discourages any behavior by adding something the dog sees as unpleasant.
  • Negative reinforcement – It increases behavior by taking something away that’s unpleasant.
  • Negative punishment – It demotivates behavior by taking something away that’s desirable.

Scientific Training

Scientific training is a mixture of lots of different training methods that are continuously analyzed, tested, and improved. Science-based dog training can be difficult to define as it relies on information that is continually building and changing.

The trainers aim to understand dogs’ nature, their ability to be conditioned, and the effectiveness of rewards and punishments while training any canine. Hence, training a dog slightly differs from training another dog.

Trainers work hand in hand with animal behaviorists who are constantly creating new studies and experiments to comprehend dog’s psychology. This method relies heavily on these studies to work with dogs. It relies on operant conditioning

Operant conditioning, sometimes referred to as instrumental conditioning, is a method of learning that employs rewards and punishments for behavior.

It mostly follows positive reinforcement and, less often, some forms of punishment. Trainers believe that it’s important to reward the positive behavior of dogs and punish the bad behavior to discourage its repetition. This method also relies on dog psychology to find ways to improve off-leash relationships between owners and their pups.

Clicker Training

Clicker training is the most basic form of a pet training method. It heavily relies on operant conditioning and follows the same principles as positive reinforcement. Mostly, it’s grouped in as a method of positive reinforcement, rather than as its own form of training.

The trainer relies on a device to make a quick, sharp noise, such as a clicker or whistle or to address a dog when a wanted behavior is accomplished. The advantage of using clicker training is that it helps dogs to easily comprehend and imbibe the desired behavior. As every good behavior is rewarded, the clicker also helps to signal the dog that with the completion of every command they’ll receive a treat.

First, the dog needs to be conditioned to know that a click means a reward is coming. Then the dog can associate a behavior with a click and a reward. Finally, verbal command can be introduced to form a new association.

Electronic Training

Electronic training is a bit extreme method of training a dog. It relies on the use of an electric collar that delivers a minimal electric shock or a spray of citronella when your dog is not performing the desired task. It’s mostly used for training at a distance when a leash can’t be used.

Shock collars are very effective when training a dog to stay within boundaries of an un-fenced yard or to teach them to work in fields or do hunting work. Unlike the popular belief, people who rely on shock collar claim that there’s less risk of a dog getting hurt than with choke collars or other mechanical devices.

This method mostly relies on punishment for bad behavior instead of rewards. Professional trainers believe that this may help the dog learn what they shouldn’t do, rather than what they should do. Using continuous punishment can also lead to a great deal of stress and permanent anxiety issues for dogs. It can be a weapon in an inexperienced hand.

Model-Rival or Mirror Training

The model-rival method of training, also known as mirror training, believes that dogs can learn by observing other dogs. By providing a model of good behavior or a rival to compete for resources, dogs learn to mimic behaviors.

This method may use another human or animal act as the model. The trainer will praise them for completing tasks on command or punishing them for unwanted behavior. The dog, as an observer, will learn from the observation. The model can also be used to act as a rival, competing to do the right task for a desired toy or treat as a reward, encouraging the dog to pick up on the task and accomplish it more quickly.

As the term stands, mirror training relies on mimicking good behavior. To put it simply, the dog learns by example. This training method is equally successful in training a canine as positive reinforcement or clicker training.

It’s also easier for the dog owners who spend a lot of time with their pets. Your dog spends a lot of time observing you and following you around making it easier to conduct the training at any time.

Alpha Dog or Dominance

Alpha dog or dominance training relies on a dog’s instinctual pack mentality to create a relationship of submission and dominance. It relies on the theory that dogs will follow a social hierarchy, as observed in captive wolf packs. When a dog sees themselves as the alpha, they need to learn to instead respect their human as the alpha and submit.

Trainers conduct this method by learning a dog’s body language and responding accordingly, projecting confidence and authority, and going first when it comes to eating, entering or leaving rooms, or walking on a leash.

The alpha training follows a strict guideline that enables your dog to understand that they must submit to you. You forbid them from sleeping with you on the same bed or eat on the same furniture. You also don’t get down to your dog’s eye level. That’s because these are signs that your dog has equal standing in the relationship. You are in charge; you are dominant.

Many modern trainers are critical of this method and claim that pet dogs do not rely on pack mentality as much as previously thought.

Relationship-Based Training

Relationship-based training relies on combining different training methods into one. It focuses on a more individualized approach for both dog and owner where the relationship between dog and human drives everything.

This method can help meet the needs of the dog and the trainer and helps to foster communication. It also helps to build a stronger bond between the human and the animal.

The trainer relies on understanding the dog’s body language. They also rely on positive reinforcement techniques such as rewarding good behavior and punishing bad behavior.

The dog’s environment is controlled to limit possible unwanted behaviors. New information is built on previous success.

There are many animal training methods and techniques you can adopt to train your own dog. Although it can be difficult for most new pet owners to conduct training at home by them, trainers can always step in to assist you whenever needed.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best doggy daycare in Urbandale. Our in-house trainers can always help you with training your dogs. Being a pet hospital in Urbandale, we can always provide immediate medical assistance to your dog.

DIY - Best Pet hacks for Summer and Winter

The summer is already upon us. Although it is one of the great times of the year for the pet, the heat can be super dangerous to your little furry friend.

There are 1001 ways to beat the heat to keep your pet cool in summer. Here are some of the most popular DIY Hacks for you to try.

Unlike us humans who are covered in sweat glands, dogs only sweat through sweat glands in the pads of their feet and noses. They release heat by panting, which isn't super-efficient so they can quickly become overheated. To avoid the dangers of heat, they need our help.

10 Best DIY Pet Hacks for Summer

Here is the list of ten best Do-It-Yourself Hacks to beat the heat this summer and keep your furry friend cool and happy.

Frozen DIY Treats

  • Creating a frozen pet treat is one of the most popular DIY hacks. It’s easy and very much loved by dogs. You can choose to buy frozen pet treats from the market and keep it inside your freezer until you need them or you can create one yourself.
  • You can create frozen treats at home by using these ingredients
  • Frozen broth cubes - Pour beef or chicken broth with no salt in the ice-cube tray and freeze them overnight.
  • Frozen yogurt - Yoghurt is good for dogs. Choose to buy lactose-free yogurt and freeze it in an ice-cube tray for a few hours.
  • Frozen Kong - You can use oven-baked traditional kibbles and spread some peanut butter or cream cheese and free it.
  • Peanut Butter Popsicles - Who doesn't love popsicle? Mix peanut butter, mashed bananas, and plain yogurt and free it in an ice-cube tray.
  • Remember that you must use healthy meal options to create frozen treats for your dog, to keep it active and relished.

Summer Dog Shoes

You must have heard of dog shoes, but have you heard dog shoes for summertime? Yes, pet essential manufacturers have come up with dog shoes that keep your furry friend’s paws safe from blistering hot asphalt and tiles while providing enough hydration and air-flow.

  • Summer dog shoes can be very useful you take your dog out for a walk or play during day time. Keep in mind to find the right size of shoes for your dog.
  • Features of proper dog shoes
  • Rugged – Rugged and strong shoes with a sturdy sole protects sensitive paws from sharp objects, heat, rubble, and hot pavement.
  • Comfortable – It should be comfortable to put on and take off. If it’s difficult to get off, it’s likely that your pet’s paws are squeezed inside.
  • Reflective - Reflective strips on the shoes help to make sure your dog is visible if you’re adventuring during dawn or dusk.
  • Durable- Consider durable over cheap options. Durable shoes can be used for years.
  • Breathable – Remember that your pet’s paw needs to breathe. Dogs sweat from paw and nose, hence, air circulation is a must.

Proper Grooming

Pet grooming is essential throughout the year. There are certain times during a year when your furry friends need more grooming and care. Summer is one of the times when your pet needs extra attention. Many dogs with double coats and thick fur are prone to overheating during summer. Regularly brushing their fur using grooming brushes and keeping their coat neat and clean helps to maintain the airflow. Regardless of the season, it’s important to ensure that fur is never matted or disheveled. Never get your pet fur entirely shaved off. Direct sunlight on the skin can cause sunburn and other allergies.

Many pet owners believe that double-coated dogs can’t handle the heat, but during summer they actually shed their undercoat which helps them to stay cool. Ensure to keep their fur clean and unmated.

Pet Mini Pools

What could be better than creating a mini-pool for your furry friend and their friends? Mini pools can easily be assembled and fit in your backyard. If you have any outdoor space to offer your pet some relief in the form of a quick pop-up water park, try purchasing a small kiddie pool.

If you’re buying a blow-up pool, ensure that it’s made out of harder plastic that is claw-friendly. You can always add accessories such as water-hose over the pool, pet toys, and games, etc. to fit inside the mini-pool!

Damp/Wet Towels

While some dogs enjoying jumping into a water pool, few dogs may shy away from stepping into one. Fear of water is common in many dogs. To ensure that they get to enjoy cool water during summer, you can use damp or wet towels and wipe your pet with them.

If your furry pet doesn’t mind, you can use a water hose to spray cool water on them. Both of these are less scary ways to ensure that they aren’t missing out on the relief of a cool bath.

Ice Cubes in Drinking Water

Ice cubes are the best treats for your furry friends during summer. You can simply put it in front of them or add in their water bowl to keep the water cool.

If you’re unsure how your pet will react to ice, start off with smaller chunks. Get them used to it! Dogs enjoy licking ice cubes which can keep their tongue cool. Aggressive chewers might find danger in larger ice cubes, but many dogs love them. Teething puppies can also use this as a way to soothe their gums.

You can also add ice cubes into water bowls to keep the temperature down during summer.

Make a Frozen Treat Bowl

Just like frozen kibble, you can keep your pets occupied and refreshed with a frozen treat bowl. Ensure to use a different kind of mixture and solution in the frozen kibble. The chicken broth works well because the flavor keeps them interested until they get to the good stuff. Don’t make a mistake of keeping the frozen treat bowl outside the house. It will melt instantly!

Create a Shaded Sanctuary

Shaded sanctuary works well for both humans and pets. Originally designed for a child, you can use the tiny shaded sanctuary for your furry friends. Building one in the backyard ensures that your dog can find shade at any time of the day. This cute tepee tent is the perfect shady spot for a pet on a sunny day and can easily be created by hand using few tools.

Protect Pet Paws with a DIY Wax Treatment

You cannot always prevent your dog from stepping on a hot surface such as hot asphalt and tiles during a sunny day. To ensure that their paws aren’t scalded by hot surface, you can apply paw wax. If you can't your dog from walking outside during the heat of the day, ensure that you provide an extra layer of protection against the heat.

You can create paw wax at home.

  • In a small pot – or double boiler – over low heat melt the oils, shea butter, and beeswax. ...
  • Pour the mixture into lip balm tubes and/or tins.
  • Let them cool on the counter until hard.
  • Cap and label.
  • Keep away from extreme heat.
  • Use within 1-2 years

Freeze a Toy

For added fun, you can add water, treats, and your dog’s favorite toys to a plastic container and freeze them. This will help keep them entertained for hours. The ice will also help keep them cool and hydrated.

Some of the useful DIY hacks for winter are as such:

  • Use basic cold tap water to fill pet water bowls. It takes longer to freeze in the cold outside.
  • Always wipe down your dog's paws after a walk outside to prevent the build-up of residues such as rock salt, and antifreeze
  • Get them winter booties or use Vaseline on their paws to keep them protected
  • Reduce the number of dog baths during winter. Let them stink a bit.
  • Let their hair grow during winter. No need to trim them off!
  • Feed them more during winter as they can easily burn up calories to stay warm
  • Dress them up in a winter coat or doggy sweater. You can also repurpose old kids' clothing.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is the best pet hospital in Des Moines. Get in touch with us to find the best doggy daycare in Des Moines.

 

Human Food You should Never Feed your Dog

Many pet owners let their dogs eat from their plates and left-overs. Let us tell you that this is very wrong! Allowing your pet to eat the food you consume isn’t only harmful but also life-threatening to them. The food we commonly eat on a daily basis consists of fats, cholesterol, and natural chemicals that are prone to a dog’s health.

Xylitol, a naturally obtained chemical mixed in chocolates to make it sweet, can cause insulin levels to rise and damage your dog’s liver.

There are many food items, raw or cooked, that we consume on a daily basis which can create troubles for your pet. As a precautionary measure, you should stop feeding pet your of your kitchen. And, put your trash away from the reach of your nosy-friends who often dive into the trash can to scavenge for food scraps.

10 Human Foods to Avoid Feeding your Dog

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort, the best doggy daycare has compiled a list of food items that are harmful and useful for dogs. The list is also recommended by the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center of food harmful for dogs.

Yeast Dough

Yeast dough is harmful to dogs mainly because the yeast begins to rise once it gets into your dog’s digestive system. As it swells inside, the dough can stretch their abdomen, bloat their stomach or even twist it, making it a lot painful to them. In many cases, consuming a large amount of yeast dough can become a life-threatening emergency. The yeast produces a chemical ‘ethanol’ as a by-product which leads to alcohol poisoning in dogs.

Xylitol

Xylitol is a naturally originating chemical found in many plants and trees. It is used as a sweetener in many food items such as chewing gum, candy, baked goods, and toothpaste. Ingesting xylitol leads to the release of insulin in dogs. The excessive increase in insulin can lead to hypoglycemia (lowered sugar levels) and can trigger vomiting, lethargy, and loss of coordination. If not treated within a few days, it can lead to elevated liver enzymes and liver failure in dogs. Carefully dispose away of the candy and gums, and keep the trash can away from your dog’s reach.

Salty Food

Most fast food items eaten by people including Pizza, burger, fries, Lasagna, pop-corn, and Pasta consist of a large amount of salt (sodium). Large amounts of salt intake can produce excessive thirst and urination in dogs. In many cases, the continuous intake of sodium can even lead to sodium ion poisoning in pets.

There are tell-tale signs of sodium poisoning such as vomiting and diarrhea. Severe symptoms include depression, tremors, elevated body temperature, and seizures.

Onion, Garlic, and Chives

We often use onion, garlic, and chives in our meal to make it delicious. The problem with these natural root-items is that they can cause gastrointestinal irritation in dogs and cats. It is less troubling if consumed in a small amount. However, if your dog consumes a large portion at once, it can lead to red blood cell damage or anemia. The tell-tale signs include weakness, vomiting, and breathing problems.

Toxicity is normally diagnosed through history, clinical signs, and microscopic confirmation of Heinz bodies. You should keep onions and garlic -- powdered, raw, cooked, or dehydrated -- away from your dog.  Do not let your dog nibble on fast foods found at fests, carnivals, and beaches

Milk and Dairy

Milk and dairy products can be harmful to dogs mainly because they do not possess significant amounts of lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose in milk. Consuming a large amount of milk and other dairy-based products can lead to diarrhea or other digestive upset in dogs. They can also trigger food allergies, which can cause her to itch. Unlike popular belief, milk is harmful to cats. Instead of sharing your ice cream with your dog, instead, give them some cold water.

Grapes and Raisins

Popular fruits like grapes and raisins consist of unknown toxins that can lead to kidney failure in dogs. Although the actual toxic compound is unknown, many instances and research have led to the belief that consuming grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure. Even small amounts of grapes and raisins can be troublesome for your dog. Signs of ingestion include vomiting, tremors, lethargy, and dehydration.

Chocolate and Caffeine

Do not let your dog nibble on chocolates and caffeine-based food products. Chocolate contains a substance called methylxanthines which are commonly found in Cacao seeds. Ingestion of methylxanthines leads to vomiting and diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, abnormal heart rhythm, tremors, and seizures. In a severe case, death is common too. The dark chocolate is more dangerous than milk chocolate because it contains more methylxanthines and caffeine. Prevent your dog from slurping coffee and tea from the cup or floor.

Alcohol

Alcohol causes ethanol poisoning in dogs. They shouldn’t consume it even the smallest bit of amount. The tell-tale signs of ethanol poisoning include a lack of coordination, diarrhea, seizures, and vomiting. In many cases, it leads to central nervous system depression, tremors, and abnormal blood acidity in dogs. Contact your pet hospital in Urbandale as soon as you notice these signs.

Coconut and Coconut Oil

When ingested in small amounts, coconut or coconut-based products do not pose problems to dogs. However, the flesh and milk of fresh coconuts contain oils that may cause stomach upset, loose stools, or diarrhea in dogs. Coconut water is mainly avoided for pets because it contains a high amount of potassium.

Citrus

Citrus fruits are commonly found around many gardens, parks, and forests. Beware if your dog starts nibbling on these small fruits. The stems, leaves, peels, fruit, and seeds of citrus plants contain varying amounts of citric acid, essential oils that can lead to bowel irritation and central nervous system depression. A small amount doesn’t necessarily hurt your dog, however, if ingested in a significant amount it can lead to many problems.

Here are some of the food items and fruits that you can consider feeding your dog. However, you must remember to use moderation when introducing these food items.

  • Blueberries
  • Pineapples
  • Strawberries
  • Salmon
  • Peanut Butter
  • Bananas
  • Cheese
  • Cooked eggs (Never feed raw eggs)
  • Oranges
  • Carrots

 

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort offers some of the best-certified veterinarians in Urbandale. Get in touch with us to find out about the best ways to take care of your pet.

Pet Essential that Every Pet Owner should Own

Pet essentials are assorted items that you will need at the beginning, middle, and end of your canine’s journey. They aren’t only items but essentials that make their and your life easier. These are things every pet owner should have on hand at the beginning, middle, and end of their journey with their canine companions.

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort, the best pet hospital in Des Moines, has compiled a list of ten pet essentials that every pet owner should have at home.

  1. ID Tag

Although many say that ID Tags are old school, it is one of the easiest ways to identify a dog and its owner. Like us humans, the pet needs identification in case they are lost, wander off, or fall in some accident. Although microchipping your dog works almost all the time, if they escape or get lost, personal ID tags can help identify them without going through the microchip reading process. ID Tags can ensure to get them home as quickly as possible.

Along with ID Tag, it’s essential to microchip your pet. There are greater advantages to micro-chipping such as during holidays and celebrations where there are many cases of missing pets. Most of these pets are lured into a trap or are distracted. Once the ID tag is removed, it becomes difficult to locate a dog even when they are found by rescue shelters. A microchip can help prevent this by easily identifying the dog.

  1. Pet First Aid Kit

Pet First-Aid Kit is another pet essential that should in your home, car, or office at all times. Owning and being able to use the first-aid kit can prove to be a life-saver! These are the items that should be in the first-aid kit all the time.

  • Absorbent gauze pads
  • Adhesive tape
  • Cotton balls or swabs
  • Fresh 3% hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting
  • Ice pack (Replaceable)
  • Disposable gloves
  • Scissors with the blunt end
  • Tweezers
  • OTC antibiotic ointment
  • Oral syringe or turkey baster
  • Liquid dishwashing detergent (for bathing)
  • Towels
  • Small flashlight
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Styptic powder
  • Saline eye solution
  • Artificial tear gel
  • Phone number, clinic name, address of your veterinarian

 

  1. Comfortable Harness/Leash/Longline

There has been a debate about harness and leashes for dogs. While it is true that a harness can be more comfortable for your pets compared to a leash, for smaller dogs and pups, leash works best. Most harnesses won’t fit the small-sized dogs unless you make a customized one for them.

Take suggestions from your pet trainer and veterinarian if you should buy a harness or leash for your dog. Longline works best when you take your dog out in the park or near forests. This will prevent it from running off into the forest or bushes and also keeps it away from the reach of coyotes and other wild animals.

  1. Dog Diapers

Dog diapers become essential at different points of time in the life of dogs. While dog diapers are common when they are young or older, some dogs may need dog diapers when they are facing certain medical conditions such as incontinence.

Diapers help to prevent dirt and germs on the floor from entering the urethra and causing a Urinary tract infection in dogs. The thing to keep in mind is that you should change the dog diaper frequently. Just like children, dogs n`eed to feel fresh and clean to stay in a healthy state of mind.

  1. Pet Hair Brush

Even though you frequently take your dog for grooming, it’s quite handy to keep a comfortable pet hairbrush around the house.  Frequent grooming in dogs is linked to their mental well-being. Regular grooming is linked to a balanced mental and physical state of the pet. It keeps them stress-free and comfortable, especially those with long or heavy coats.

There are different kinds of pet hair brushes which you can choose from,

  • A slicker brush helps to get rid of any debris, loose hair, and mats/knots.
  • A pin brush is made for dogs with longer and silkier coat types.
  • A bristle brush is well suited for dogs with short or wiry coats.
  • The undercoat rake is designed to get deep into double and heavy coats of dogs.

 

  1. Steel Food and Water Bowl

Using plastic food and water bowl for dogs is a complete No-No. The plastic bowls often form cracks after extensive use which leads to debris or residue. These can lead to the formation of germs and bacteria which can easily pass into the digestive system of your pets. Using a ceramic bowl is another best option.

You should fill the water bowls often during summer because dogs often perspire while sitting indoors. This is the best way to ensure that your pet doesn’t remain dehydrated. Additionally, some dogs may develop an allergy to the plastic, resulting in a mild skin reaction on the chin or face

  1. Cozy Bed with Heating Pads

Your dog spends most of its life in its bed; hence ensure that you provide a cozy and comfortable bed. Using a cozy mattress is one of the options to make the bed extra cozy. During winter, you should consider installing heating pads in their bed. Do not use heated blankets meant for humans. Heated dog beds heat up safely for a dog's needs and work on low voltage making them safe for canines.

  1. Toys and Puzzles

Keeping pets engaged with different forms of toys and puzzles help to keep them away from developing isolation, boredom, or stress. This is important because dogs that “need a job” have a problem-solving mindset and will find puzzles very satisfying. You can find different forms of interactive games for pets. When you’re home, you can consider hiding treats and giving them clues to solve the problem. This helps to strengthen you and your pet’s bond.

  1. Flea Treatment Agent

Fleas can also sneak into your home any time of year. Easily available flea treatments can help to remedy your home from flea infestation. As an option, you can create your own concoction of home-based agents to develop flea treatments.

Use flea shampoos to wash your dog when it's flea season. This prevents flea from getting into your dog's coat, which is later carried inside your home.

Flea infection becomes common during spring and summer.

  1. Stain and Odor Remover

Stain and odor remover helps to remove stubborn urine smells from just about anywhere while removing the underlying pheromones. These pheromones are like a marker where your dog tends to return to and re-mark. You can find many enzyme-based cleaners on the market.

 

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is a premier pet hospital in Urbandale. We employ some of the best-certified veterinarians in Urbandale. Get in touch with us to find out about other pet essentials you can gift your companion.

Water Therapy Service for Dogs

Like humans, a pet is often prone to physical ailments. Arthritis and hip dysplasia are common in many canines, while Obesity remains common in both canines and felines. Therapy has been proven to reduce physical pain and ailments in pets.

Water therapy service for dogs is specially designed to treat obesity and different forms of bone ailments in dogs.

Pet therapy service

Not to be mistaken with Animal Assisted Therapy, Pet therapy service is specifically designed for the pets. Pet therapy is a human-assisted treatment designed for pets as an intensive therapy session for various ailments, weight loss, physiological diagnosis, and treatment.

According to a study by the Association for pet obesity prevention, 56% of the pet dogs in the USA are overweight in 2017. Among them, 19.6% are suffering from obesity. Overweight is not only the problem in itself but also the cause of many problems in both humans and animals. Well planned diet, proper exercise, and regular health checkup is the key to healthy pets.

Every veterinary and pet hospital should be equipped with therapists and water therapy services for dogs.  They should be well prepared to rehabilitate major pet problems such as:

  • Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD)
  • Obesity
  • Arthritis
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Gait Abnormalities
  • Bone and Joint Injuries

Importance of pet therapy service

Pet Therapy service has both physical and mental benefits for pets. From reducing physical pain to gaining confidence, pet therapy has larger implications on pet health.

  • Depression and anxiety are common in pets with arthritis. The difficulty in movement often reduces endorphin (any of a group of hormones secreted within the brain and nervous system and having a number of physiological functions including happiness). Intensive therapy can help dogs move freely which can certainly improve their mood.
  • Along with increasing endorphin, pet therapy can help decrease feelings of isolation and alienation. They will be encouraged to communicate with other animals and humans.
  • The decrease in anxiety, boredom, and increase in exercise can improve the overall health of the dog.
  • In the case of obesity, water therapy can help reduce the unnecessary weight by intensive underwater exercise. This has proven to be helpful to many overweight dogs and cats.

Water therapy service for dogs

Water therapy, also known as hydrotherapy, is a technique of reducing weight within a short duration. Water therapy implies two different methods of reducing weight: exercising in the swimming pool and the underwater treadmill.

Water induced therapy in the swimming pool helps dogs to play and engage in an exercise in the swimming pool, whereas, the underwater treadmill is a focused therapy applied to reduce weight or treat physical ailments such as hip dysplasia and arthritis.

Hydrotherapy originally began as a treatment for humans in ancient times. It later expanded to include animals too. The first instance of the therapy saw benefits among racehorses as well as racing Greyhounds.

Various therapies used in the present-day treatment employ water jets, underwater massage and mineral baths (e.g. balneotherapy, Iodine-Grine therapy, Kneipp treatments, Scotch hose, Swiss shower, and thalassotherapy)

About pool therapy

The pool tends to be smaller than a human swimming pool and is heated. A dog's muscles benefit from the warming effects of the heated water. Most pools are equipped with a ramp for entry and exit and some have harnessed to maintain the dog in position in the water. Water is chlorinated or treated with an alternative chemical. Some have jets to add resistance and make the dog swim more strongly.

Benefits of Water Therapy Service for Dogs

The many benefits of water therapy service for dogs include:

  • Hydrotherapy helps in relieving pain and strengthen or re-training muscles. The dog is effectively weightless when swimming which helps to minimize pain and enforce the strengthening of muscles or bones.
  • It encourages a full range of joint motion, thus improving muscle tone without imposing unnecessary stress on damaged tissues.
  • It also helps your dog lose unnecessary body weight by encouraging regular exercise.
  • It helps dogs to recover from the injury or surgery.
  • It can be beneficial for dogs who suffer from arthritis due to old age. The water buoyancy helps to reduce joint swelling, stress on muscles and bones, etc.
  • The older dogs tend to experience sadness and fear, especially when their ailing health causes pain. The support of water and relief from pain promotes a sense of safety and well-being in them.

Why you should perform a water therapy service?

The hydrotherapy technique has been applied to animals since the 18th Century. It is one of the most effective forms of alternative treatment.

The water is denser than the air, thus making it 5x more effective for the exercise. The intensive exercise can help lose more weight through water therapy in a very short time. Although water therapy is mostly implemented for weight loss, it has many other health benefits. Regular water therapy helps maintain fitness, strength, and condition of body. Being in shape and good health will help reduce future medical costs.

Water buoyancy makes it possible for dogs with joint problems to exercise without any pressure. It is very useful for joint and limb problems.

Water therapy can help in healing after surgery or injury. It makes it easier for muscle mass development and muscle strength in necessary body parts. Water therapy, usually warm water, improves circulation and lymphatic drainage. It reduces swelling, increases mobility and relaxes the muscle.

It increases the metabolism in the body. It helps to digest the food and absorb all the nutrients and spread throughout the body.

Real news about “water therapy service for dogs”

The news was covered by ABC7 Chicago.

Montana beagle named 'Pearl' weighed 50 pounds. Within one year, she lost 20-25 pounds thanks to hydrotherapy.

Pearl's owner said, "She weighed 50 pounds, unable to walk more than 4 to 5 steps before her legs would give out. She had a dislocated hip that prevented her from being able to walk well."

Initially, she was only able to exercise 45 seconds along with many breaks in between. However, after sessions six days a week, he built up the endurance to swim for 15 minutes.

Pearl has Cushing's disease hence she has to follow a strict diet but enjoys a treat now and again.

Pet Care Service in Des Moines

Urban Pet Hospital & Resort is a premier veterinary specializing in pet care service in Des Moines. We offer different forms of pet therapy services such as canine massage, Low-Level Laser Therapy, different range of motion exercise, aqua paws underwater treadmill, magnetic field therapy, hydrotherapy - In the ground endless pool with swim current.

Our therapists perform special weight loss programs. Get in touch with Urban Pet Hospital & Resort for the best pet care service in Des Moines.

How often do you bath your dog?

Bathing your dog is essential to keep it clean and hygienic or parasite free. The pets enjoy an entirely different lifestyle than us humans, hence, their hygiene may vastly differ. Dogs tend to keep themselves cleaner by licking themselves or by removing toxins from skin through perspiration, however, this may not prove to be hygienic for the owners.

The type of bath and how often may depend on various factors. It is essential that you consult with the Veterinarian or the pet shop owner with whom you bought your dog before indulging in any particular bathing practice.


What is the nature of your dog?

Dogs who spent more time outside the house may need frequent bath than the one staying inside the house. Most dogs tend to just sit on the couch in a room all day.

If a dog play outside in mud and soil, it may need regular wash with soap and brush. These dogs have tendency to carry alien parasites if not cleaned properly and can contaminate entire house indoors.

What type of coat does your dog has?

Bathing once a month works with almost all the dog, however,

  • Dogs with oily coat like Basset Hounds may need a weekly wash.
  • Dogs with short hair, like; Beagles and Weimaraners, may need less frequent baths.
  • Dogs with water-repellant coats, like; Golden Retriever and Great Pyrenees may need less baths so as to preserve their natural skin oil.
  • Dogs with thick, double coat such as Samoyeds, Malamutes and other northern breeds may need fewer baths and lot of scrubbing to get the dirt off their skin.

Does your dog have any skin related or dermatological condition?

As stated before, dogs with short fur and thin coat may need lesser bathe than the rest, however, the skin condition may remain a useful factor in deciding how often to bathe your dog.

Dogs with acute allergies, excess hair loss, bald or dry patches, lumps and bumps need special care. You must consult your veterinarian and only bathe with certain products or at a time prescribed by the expert.

In most cases, wrong shampoo or frequent baths can cause skin related problems. This can be eradicated by consulting with the Vet or when you first catch the sign of any problem.

What bathing products to use?

Soaps and shampoo used by humans mustn’t be used for dogs. Human skin has pH level of 5 while dogs have pH level of 7. The shampoo used by humans are more acidic in nature, which if used on dogs can cause irritation or skin rashes.

Bathing product must have a pH value that is especially formulated for a dog's delicate skin, between 6.5 to 7.5.

The Vets can recommend the right shampoo and technique of bathing to prevent any problem in the future. You should always stick to quality dog related bathing products.

How to bathe your Dog?

The process of bathing your dog is simpler. Here are few factors to remember,

Brush them before bath

It is essential to brush your dog before bath to prevent matted hair which soaks up lot of water and can cause irritations later.

Use lukewarm water

Do not use hot or warm water to bathe your dog, as they have sensitive skin. Hot water can burn the skin easily. Using cooler water for the most larger breed dogs is recommended as they tend to easily overheat.

Use dog shampoo

You must always use dog shampoo and products. The dog shampoo specifically comes with ph level of above 6 and up to 7.5 which is recommended for their skin. Shampoo with lesser pH level are acidic and can cause skin irritations.

Rinse well

You must rinse them well after bath to soak up the water. Water left in the ear or sensitive areas can cause irritation later.

Air-dry

Using natural air-dry or dryer specifically for dogs is essential to keep their fur in healthy condition.

Reward your dog

Do not forget to reward your dog after the bathe to encourage them to stay healthy and love occasional baths.


Check out Pet Grooming to learn more about your dog’s habits and grooming.

Gift to our best friend: Water therapy for dogs

Dogs have been our best friends from centuries. They have been with us in our joy, grief and troubles. They have been the reason for our happiness. They can be taken as the definition of unconditional love. The welcome they offer to us every time we come back home is beyond the explanation of words. Their love, care and warmth always restore our faith.

We all can agree on the fact that dogs have given us a lot. Why not thank them by giving them a productive gift this best friend day, a good health.

According to a study by Association for pet obesity prevention, 56% of the pet dogs in usa are overweight in 2017. Among them, 19.6% are suffering from obesity. Overweight is not only the problem in itself but also the cause of many problems in both humans and animals. Well planned diet, proper exercise and regular health checkup is the key to healthy pets.

You can be preventive about your pet's health and overweight issues, prevention is always the best way to deal with the problems. But, what if your dog is already overweight? Now it's the cure time. When it comes to reducing weight, the first thing that comes in my mind is water therapy.

Water therapy

Water therapy, also known as hydrotherapy, is a technique of losing weight by the use of water. There are two techniques within the water therapy: swimming pool and underwater treadmill. In swimming pool, the dogs can play around freely whereas underwater treadmill is more of a focused therapy which is usually used with a targeted amount of weight to be lost.

The water is denser than the air, thus making it 5 times more effective exercise. The dogs can lose more weight through water therapy in very few time span. If trained properly, they love swimming, making it a fun and they won’t have the burden of the feeling of exercise.

Along with weight loss, water therapy has many other perks for dogs. Regular water therapy helps maintain fitness, strength and condition of body. Being in shape and health reduces most of the future medical costs.

Water buoyancy makes it possible for dogs with joint problems to exercise without any pressure. It is very useful for joint and limb problems.

Water therapy is a healer after surgery or injury. It makes it easier for the muscle mass development and muscle strength in necessary body parts. Water therapy, usually warm water, improves circulation and lymphatic drainage. It reduces swelling, increases mobility and relaxes the muscle.

It increases the metabolism in body. Because of this, all the food consumed get properly digested and the nutrient reach all the necessary parts of the body.

Urban pet hospital and resort is well equipped with in-ground endless pool with swim current and aqua paws underwater treadmill. Our swimming trainers train dogs in regular basis and perform special weight loss programs, too. If you are living in Urbandale, Central Iowa, we are here for you. You can contact us at 515 727 0607. Wish you a happy best friend day.

#BestFriendDay