Top 10 Things Dog Owners Think When a Stranger Comes To Pet Their Dog!

Top 10 Things Dog Owners Think When a Stranger Comes To Pet Their Dog!

If you take your dog out in public, it’s going to happen eventually. It’s inevitable. Somebody is going to run up and grab your dog. Pet your dog. Maybe take its picture. And while you may force a smile or try to make the best out of what could be a bad situation, let’s face it, we know you are thinking one (or two) of the following things.

Are you the dog lover on the other end of the leash? We GET IT! And we love that you think our dog is cute. But sometimes our cute dog is not so friendly and we are worried about YOUR safety. Think of this as a “what not to do” next time you see an adorable dog coming your way. The owner and the dog will both appreciate it!

1 – She’s headed straight for us, hand already out stretched, no intention of asking first I bet!

And unfortunately, nine times out of ten, the dog owner’s thoughts are right. The dog lover approaches, arm outstretched towards the dog’s head (and teeth!) without a thought in the world.

2 – CRAP!! Is there an escape route nearby?

Those of us with dogs that do not like to be petted know this feeling all too well. You see the person coming and you know your only chance is if you can move your dog before the stranger’s hand comes within teeth range.

3 – Why don’t they EVER believe me when I say ‘He’s not friendly’??

Why would we make that up? We continue to think as our vocal words of “he’s not friendly! Stay back! He doesn’t want to greet!” seems to fall on deaf ears. It’s frustrating because we are just trying to keep the stranger safe.

4 – Great. Now I am LATE for my appointment – when will this person go away so my dog can pee?

Even if you have gotten permission from the owner to say hi, don’t set up camp. A quick pet under the chin is enough. They have lives too and they don’t revolve around you getting your doggy fix.

5 – This person must have missed the day in school where they taught “GENTLE”!

The best way to pet a dog is to crouch down next to (not in front of), and pet them under their chin or around their neck and under their ears (most dogs like ear scratches). Bending over a dog, going for the top of the head and patting instead of stroking can all lead to bites.

6 – Since when does my dog have Paparazzi?

You see a cool dog. Maybe it’s a pretty color, a rare breed, or your favorite one. You really want to take a picture to show the world. But before you snap a selfie, ask the owner. They may find it rude that you are taking pictures of their dog (and possible them!) without permission.

7 – This one’s not EVEN going to acknowledge I’m alive

We understand being excited about seeing a cute dog. After all, we love dogs too. But the polite thing to do is to pause and talk to the person holding the leash as well.

8 – If one more person calls her a “MINI COLLIE” I might explode

Yes, it might seem like over-reacting, but when a dog owner has had their dog mistaken for another breed (or one that doesn’t exist like a mini collie) for years, it can try the patience. Better to ask a dog owner what breed their dog is, than to assume. Many find a mislabel insulting (we dog owners are a sensitive lot!)

9 – Try to pick up my dog one more time, I DARE YOU!

Little dogs fall victim to this all the time. A stranger sees a cute Chihuahua or the like, and stoops down to immediately pick them up, without even thinking about it. But they should think about it. Some small dogs will bite if a stranger tries to pick them up. Again, it comes down to safety, but also respect for the dog and his owner.

10 – Maybe if I don’t make eye contact, speed up, and change direction I can avoid that person walking straight at me like they are on a mission. CRAP! They changed direction to keep coming at me. Maybe if I go the opposite direction…??

Sometimes, we may be walking our dogs because we needed to get away. To relax. Or maybe we are more introverted and prefer the silent company of our dogs to other humans. Maybe we have exactly five minutes to potty our dog before we have to go to work. Our dog shouldn’t be an open invitation to approach us. Be respectful of those giving obvious signs they do not want to interact. It’s the polite thing to do.

There are millions of dogs in the world, you are sure to find one to pet at some point. Just maybe not this one. Follow this advice and you will find dog owners will be much nicer to you in return.

Should My Dog Be Fatter In Winter?

Should My Dog Be Fatter In Winter?

Bears, bats, squirrels, and many other animals start to pack on the pounds at the end of summer through autumn to prepare for winter. This may make you think your dog should also be packing on the pounds for winter. So maybe you add a bit extra to their food. After all, they need to stay warm right?

But, let’s look at the facts of the life of a house dog:

Food is not scarce. The main reason wild animals pack on pounds is because they cannot find food in the winter. But your dog is getting his meals every day, no matter the weather or the season.

They don’t hibernate. Bears pack on pounds before they hibernate. No matter how much your Basset Hound sleeps a day, he is not hibernating!

They don’t expend energy foraging. Wild animals that do not hibernate spend a lot of energy looking for the small amounts of food available in winter. Your dog uses very little energy to walk to the food dish.

They are in a temperature-controlled environment. Unless your dog is outside 24/7, he does not need extra fat to keep warm. A dog that lives outside year-round in the southern states may need a layer of fat to be warm – northern dogs do not. Even then, you don’t want him too fat. If you can see three or four ribs, he may need to bulk up a bit. Remember, being able to see one or two ribs and feel them with your hands is a sign your dog is in great body condition.

But Winter Weight Gain Can Still Happen!

So now you know your pampered house pet has no reason to be packing on those pounds. But, their body may be telling them something different. Colder weather slows down our metabolism (dogs and humans alike!), making it more likely we will gain weight even if our food intake doesn’t change. In addition, we usually take our dogs out less in winter, because of bad weather and shorter days, so now they are getting less exercise. Combine the two, and chances are your dog may gain weight in the winter.

And since most dogs are already overweight, this is not good news. The more obese your dog gets, the more health issues he is likely to develop, not to mention shortening his lifespan.

You can stop this by making sure you take your dog out to exercise, regardless of the weather and/or feed him less depending on his current body condition. Stay Loyal is formulated so that you can feed less to keep your dog at an ideal weight, making it easier to keep your dog in good health year round. If only feeding ourselves was this easy!

What Does “Holistic” Mean & Why it Matters!

What Does “Holistic” Mean & Why it Matters!

In the last decade, there have been many changes in dog food and with them came a whole new set of terminologies. Two of the most used are “natural” and “holistic.” Unfortunately, the definition of these two terms have become muddied, with many consumers believing they mean the same thing. Others don’t really understand what either word means.

The term “holistic” was actually first used in medicine. There, it was confused with “alternative medicine” by “westerners” when it first began to appear alongside western medicine.

So What DOES Holistic Mean?

Holistic is a philosophy that believes in treating the whole – mind, body, spirit – of a person (animal). Those that practice it believe the three parts of the body must be treated together in order for real change or healing or occur.

So how does that translate to dog food?

Natural food simply means it doesn’t contain chemicals – such as chemical preservatives or artificial colors. Basically, if it doesn’t exist in nature, it shouldn’t be in the food. The exception being the addition of vitamins and minerals needed for health.

Organic food involves not only having natural ingredients, but that those ingredients are raised without the use of chemicals, GMOs, etc. Meat is raised humanely. There are regulations for the use of the word “organic” on human food, but not yet for dog food.

The term holistic on a dog food label is vastly different from the other two terms because it has nothing to do with how the ingredients are sourced. Instead, holistic food means the makers have taken into consideration the needs of your whole dog when choosing their ingredients. It should mean the owners of the company are believers in the holistic philosophy, and therefore encourage pet owners to address the needs of their dog’s mind, body, and spirit.

It’s important to note that when it comes to food, there is no guidelines for the use of the word holistic (like there are for organic). So, pet owners need to be diligent and research a company before believing what the label says.

How is Stay Loyal Holistic?

Now that we just told you there are no regulations on the use of the word, how do you know Stay Loyal is a holistic brand? For starters, I have been around dogs my entire life, including breeding, working and training, so I understand how dogs function. I also understand the issues their entire body, mind, spirit can have from improper nutrition. Dogs that are not being fed correctly have health (body) and behavior (mind and spirit) issues. In fact, it was my struggles with my own dogs that led us to make a food that really did address all the needs of our dogs, so that they would be happier, heathier, and even live longer.

And since holistic is all about feeding the entire body well, there was no way it was going to be anything but natural, because chemicals and artificial anything is not good for anyone’s body. In addition, we have several key ingredients that target specific parts of your dog’s body to promote whole body health:

* Omega 3 and Omega 6 in the right ratios to promote healthy skin and coat and also decrease inflammation throughout the body.

* A high ratio of soluble fibers to stimulate good bacteria in your dog’s gut.

* Digestible animal protein to help cell repair, immunity, muscle growth and energy as well as good brain function.

* DHA and EPA to promote brain and eye development.

* Antioxidants like Rosemary, green tea, turmeric and vitamins C and E to protect against free radicals like air pollution. Rosemary also promotes calmness and helps your dog relax.

Aside from these ingredients, we help your dog be happy and healthy through our free dog care information in our newsletter, emails and this blog – which gives pet owners information they need on every facet of their dog’s life – from feeding and grooming to training and general household tips. In this way, we are truly helping your whole dog live a whole, healthy, and longer life.