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Group 1 dogs: Shepherd dogs and Bouviers, what are the particularities?

Group 1 is made up of Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs, with the exception of Swiss Cattle Dogs, which are included in Group 2. The dogs in Group 1 do not all have common physical characteristics - some are very different - but they all have similarities in terms of their ancestral use and therefore, in terms of aptitudes. Let's take a look at these herding dogs.

First section of Group 1: Sheepdogs

These are dog breeds that have been used for a long time for their abilities. These dogs guarded flocks of goats and sheep, i.e. flocks of sheep.
  • German Shepherd,
  • Australian Shepherd Dog,
  • Saarloos wolfhound,
  • Czechoslovakian wolfhound,
  • Dutch shepherd,
  • Dutch Shappendoes,
  • Serra de Aires sheepdog,
  • Slovakian Chouvatch,
  • Bearded Collie,
  • Border Collie,
  • Long-haired Collie,
  • Romanian Carpathian Sheepdog,
  • Romanian Mioritza Sheepdog,
  • Polish Podhalese or Tatra Sheepdog,
  • Nizinny or Shetland Sheepdog,
  • Majorca Sheepdog,
  • Welsh corgi Pembroke,
  • Welsh corgi Cardigan,
  • Southern Russian Shepherd,
  • Polish Lowland Sheepdog,
  • Briard,
  • Beauceron,
  • Picardy shepherd,
  • Pyrenean Shepherd,
  • Pyrenean Shepherd with short face,
  • Australian Kelpie,
  • Swiss white shepherd,
  • Croatian Shepherd Dog,
  • Bergamasco Shepherd,
  • Maremma and Abruzzo Shepherd,
  • Bobtail,
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog :
    • Tervuren,
    • Groenendael,
    • Malinois,
    • Laekenois.
  • Schipperke,
  • Catalan sheepdog,
  • Puli,
  • Mudi,
  • Pumi,
  • Kuvasz,
  • Komondor,

Second section of Group 1: Cattle dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs)

Cattle dogs are herdsmen of cattle (cows, oxen). The dog breeds in this second section are:
  • Bouvier des Ardennes,
  • Australian Cattle Dog,
  • Australian short-tailed cattle dog,
  • Bouvier des Flandres.

Main characteristics of Group 1 dogs

These dogs are known for their flexible character. They are very easy to raise and to train. Voluntary, courageous, dynamic, reactive, they are hard working dogs. With a great intelligence, they quickly understand what their master expects from them, and they are very enthusiastic in their service. They memorize a large number of words and understand the orders given to them so well that they execute them without difficulty. But they also have an extraordinary capacity for anticipation and have all the skills to work independently. It is for all these reasons that they have this great aptitude to guard flocks.

Which handler for Group 1 dogs?

Group 1 dogs have an impressive need to stay active, to be physically active but also to be intellectually challenged. They are therefore not suitable for sedentary people who do not interact with their animal through outings and play, but also who do not take the time to educate their companion. In fact, without proper training, and if they do not make themselves useful, these dogs can develop behavioral problems as adults and become dominant. Finally, the owner of a Group 1 dog must be able to spend time with his or her pet, as the dog hates solitude.

If you wish to bring a Group 1 dog into your home, whether it is a Group 1 or Group 2 dog, you can have it trained by a professional and it is highly recommended for owners who are not fully capable of doing so.

Groups and categories, how are dog breeds classified?

The FCI, Federation Cynologique Internationale, has established a classification of dog breeds, recognized worldwide. Thus, the 343 recognized breeds of dogs are classified into ten groups. Note that an unofficial eleventh group concerns dogs whose breed is in the process of being recognized or is not recognized at all. Let's take stock of the situation.

How is the FCI nomenclature established?

Fundamental for dog breeders and more generally for dog lovers, this classification of dog breeds is not established on scientific data, nor only on the function of the dogs, but on morphological specificities and only partly on this function. This is why two dogs that are relatively close in origin may not belong to the same group. However, a breed of dog can only belong to one group, which itself can be divided into different sections. This may seem inconsistent to the uninitiated.

It should be noted that the dog classification should in no way be confused with the categorization of dangerous dogs as defined by French law.

The classification is established in relation to international dog shows, and allows dogs to be put in competition.

The ten groups of dogs established by the FCI nomenclature

Here are the 10 groups and the number of dog breeds that each group includes.

Group 1: 42 breeds

  • Sheepdogs,
  • Cattle dogs (excluding Swiss Cattle Dogs).

Group 2 : 49 breeds

  • Pinscher and Schnauzer type dogs,
  • Molossoids (except small molossoids),
  • Swiss Mountain Dogs.

Group 3 : 33 breeds

  • Terriers (large and medium size),
  • Small-sized terriers,
  • Terriers of bull type,
  • Companion Terriers.

Group 4 : 1 breed

  • Dachshunds (standard, miniature, rabbit hunting).

Group 5 : 43 breeds

  • Nordic sled dogs,
  • Nordic hunting dogs,
  • Nordic guard and shepherd dogs,
  • European Spitz,
  • Asian Spitz (including relatives),
  • Primitive type dogs,
  • Primitive type hunting dogs,
  • Primitive hunting dogs with dorsal crest.

Group 6 : 69 breeds

  • Hounds,
  • Bloodhounds,
  • Related breeds.

Group 7 : 36 breeds

  • Continental pointing dogs,
  • British and Irish pointing dogs.

Group 8 : 22 breeds

  • Game retrievers,
  • Retrievers,
  • Water dogs.

Group 9 : 25 breeds

  • Bichons and related breeds,
  • Poodles,
  • Belgian small dogs,
  • Naked dogs,
  • Tibetan dogs,
  • Chihuahua,
  • English Spaniels (pet),
  • Japanese and Pekingese spaniels,
  • Continental Toy Spaniels,
  • Kromfohrländer,
  • Molossoids of small size.

Group 10 : 13 breeds

  • Longhaired or fringed sighthounds,
  • Wire-haired sighthound,
  • Short-haired sighthound.

What about the unofficial Group 11?

This Group 11 includes dog breeds that are not recognized by the classification established by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale. It also includes dog breeds that are waiting to be recognized. Dogs recognized by the cynological organization of one country or another can also be included in this unofficial group. Thus, one can for example find there the Australian Shepherd, the American Bulldog, the Dingo...

A Certificate of Aptitude for International Championship (CACIB) is attributable to dogs whose breed is definitively recognized by the FCI. This means dogs belonging to Groups 1 to 10, but not to provisionally recognized breeds.

The Poitevin, a dog with an affectionate character

The Poitevin is a hunting dog par excellence, excelling in big game hunting. But it can also live in family thanks to its affectionate and friendly character. True runner born, it will need on the other hand of sporting Masters to be happy and in full form.

Characteristics of the Poitevin

A large hound, the Poitevin is cut out for work, so to speak. With its slender and elegant appearance, it combines strength, perfection and lightness. Females measure between 60 and 70 cm and males between 62 and 72 cm. Depending on sex and age, the average weight is 30 kg. The Poitevin is immediately recognizable by its head, which is not very large and rather elongated, revealing prominent bones. The skull is flattened, the muzzle is rounded, the nose is large and strong and the muzzle is slightly tapered. We will not fail to mention the large brown eyes that are surrounded by a black halo and that show a beautiful expressive look. The ears are thin, of medium size and set slightly low. They are also drooping and a little turned. The Poitevin is recognizable by its short, shiny coat and its tricolored coat with a black mantle and white and orange markings.

History of the Poitevin breed

The Poitevin has very old origins which go back to the end of the XVIIth century when it was called "Chien du Haut-Poitou". It is the wolf hunters who were at the initiative of its creation and its naming of Poitevin in the middle of the XXth century. The Poitevin would be born from a cross between the Montemboeuf and the Ceris which are now extinct. The latter would have as ancestor the famous white dog of the king who was present in the royal packs. The Poitevin would also have blood of Saintongeois, Foxhound, the English Greyhound as well as Irish hounds. It was close to extinction during the French Revolution without the intervention of a few passionate breeders.

Living conditions and behavior of the Poitevin

Passionate about its work, courageous and tireless, this dog has all the qualities sought after in a pet. Thanks to a deep chest, it has the ability to run for hours. In addition to its status as a hunting dog, it is also a great pet. It is attached to its masters without being overflowing with affection, because it is used to living in a pack and not surrounded by humans. It is also a balanced and very intelligent animal. On the other hand, he is not really playful and prefers to concentrate on his work. This defect does not prevent him from getting along with children. Still because of its origins as a pack dog, it does not tolerate isolation and loneliness. To be healthy and happy, it absolutely needs sporty masters, because it must be able to run and let off steam as regularly as possible.

Diet and main health problems of the Poitevin

The Poitevin is a robust animal that is not predisposed to any specific hereditary disease. It supports as much the strong heats as the cold and wet climates. Its diet should be varied and adapted to its physical activity and age.

The Harrier, a dog full of energy

The Harrier is an old English hound, like the Beagle, specialized in hunting, hence its name, which comes from the English word hare, meaning "hare". Excellent in work, it is also a companion of life full of energy which is addressed to the dynamic Masters.

Characteristics of the Harrier

The Harrier gives a beautiful impression of power and reveals balanced proportions. Of average size, the animal is between 45 and 49 cm if it is a female and between 48 and 55 cm if it is a male. The weight goes from 25 kg on average to 30 kg. The Harrier is distinguished by its medium-sized, expressive head with a flattened skull, with a relatively pointed muzzle and not square and more or less wide. It reveals a nice pair of dark brown eyes that are not excessively round and are of medium size, without ever being prominent. About the ears, they differ by their wider attachment compared to the Beagle-Harrier or the Beagle. The V-shaped ear is flattened with a high attachment. The coat is short and has a soft texture. The standard tolerates all colors from black to orange, but only with a white background. In France, we usually meet tricolored Harriers whose back is covered with black.

History of the Harrier breed

The origins of the Harrier are still poorly defined to this day. Some say that it would have come from France and would have as ancestors the Talbot Hounds, the Bloodhounds as well as the Basset Hounds, which in spite of their name with English connotation, would find their origin well and truly in Belgium and in France. Another version says that the Harrier would have been born rather in England and would have appeared in the existing hunting packs in the XIIIth century. Even in North America, there would have been very old records of Harriers. However, the breed was not really popular either with American hunters or families. Regardless of its country of origin, this breed is known to excel at hunting foxes and hares. It is also becoming increasingly rare.

Living conditions and behavior of the Harrier

When it comes to hunting, it is difficult to compete with the Harrier. It is a particularly gifted working dog. This specialization has made it difficult for the breed to spread throughout the world, which explains why it is less and less common today. In the home, the Harrier also has many qualities. They are gentle, affectionate, cheerful, intelligent and enjoy being around children. He tends not to support loneliness. This defect must be rectified by an early education. Obviously, because of its origins of hunting dog, it will badly support the city life and will prefer to be in the countryside. It is nevertheless necessary to take care to secure the garden well, because its instincts of hunting can take the top and push it to run away.

Food and main health problems of the Harrier

The life expectancy of a Harrier is about 13 years. In order for the animal to live as long as possible, its diet must be built on the basis of its health, age and physical activities. As far as health is concerned, this dog is robust, but it is recommended to watch out for elbow and hip dysplasia and hypothyroidism.

Mammary tumor in female dogs: causes, symptoms and treatment

Mammary tumors are very common in female dogs, mostly unspayed, as they get older and are malignant in half of the cases. It can affect male dogs, but it is much rarer, since they are between 0.5 and 2% to be concerned. Obviously, in order to preserve the health of his animal at all costs, the owner must take him to the veterinarian at the first symptoms. The diagnosis is not easy to establish, and the treatment depends on the type of tumor. Let's review.

Mammary tumor in female dogs: what is it?

In most cases, the mammary tumor is hormonal. This means that it can be influenced by the secretion of progesterones and estrogens, the sex hormones. 50% of breast tumors are benign and 50% are malignant, i.e. cancerous.

Benign mammary tumors in canines

These are tumors that are not serious, whose evolution is local, i.e. they are limited to the animal's udder. They are generally perfectly delimited and can be felt by palpation because they are rather indurated. It can be:
  • A fibroadenoma that develops inside an udder. It is a non-serious mass made up of glandular and fibrous tissue,
  • An adenoma or nodule that appears on the mammary gland,
  • A papilloma, commonly called a wart.
This type of benign breast tumor can be identified by the formation of a small mass on a nipple, for example. At first, a string of tiny balls is felt under the finger, but these grow over time. From a few millimeters, the masses intensify. One can then notice a localized redness at the level of the skin which turns purple. In some cases, the "balls" suppurate after having pierced themselves.

Malignant mammary tumors in canines

These cancerous tumors develop rapidly. Their metastasis spreads to many organs such as the liver, brain, kidneys, lungs, bones, etc. At the beginning of the disease, the female dog does not show any particular sign, but the tumor grows over time until it becomes very large. It compresses the blood vessels. As a result, the blood and lymphatic circulation is disturbed. The symptoms are thus :
  • A general fatigue,
  • A loss of weight,
  • An oedema,
  • An attack on one or more organs when they are invaded by metastases, such as
    • respiratory difficulties (lungs)
    • neurological problems (brain),
    • urinary problems (kidneys),
    • skin redness (poor lymphatic circulation)
    • digestive problems (intestines, liver, stomach...).
It is necessary to consult the veterinarian as soon as possible when these types of symptoms are detected or when there is the slightest doubt.

Mammary tumor in female dogs: early diagnosis and treatment are essential

The type of tumor cannot be diagnosed by palpation alone. To know if it is a benign tumor or a cancer, it is imperative to submit your female dog to more thorough investigations.

Samples must be taken for a precise diagnosis (urine analysis, blood analysis, biopsy) and imaging examinations (radio, scanner, MRI...). When possible, the tumor is surgically removed and then analyzed to determine if it is cancerous or not. The treatment is adapted to each case. It is much less severe if it is a benign breast tumor.

In the case of a cancerous tumor, surgery is required and the entire breast chain is usually removed to limit the risk of recurrence. It is important to know that a recurrence within one year is possible for 6 out of 10 treated female dogs.

In addition to the surgery, the veterinarian prescribes chemotherapy to limit the development of metastases that cannot be destroyed. If the operation does not remove all of the affected tissue, the female dog treated for a cancerous mammary tumor will undergo radiation therapy.

After surgery, anti-cyclooxygenase medication can also be prescribed. The aim of this treatment is to slow down the production of this enzyme by the tumor in order to prolong the life of the animal. Treatment of a mammary tumor in a female dog can be very expensive. Fortunately, if the animal is insured with a pet health insurance company, the owner can be reimbursed at least partially for the expenses.

6 natural anti-fleas for your dog

To rid your dog of fleas, you can prepare natural flea repellents based on common products that cost only a few euros at most. They also allow you to treat the dog's environment, which is essential to eradicate these parasites. Between white vinegar or apple vinegar, garlic clove, some essential oils, mint and eucalyptus leaves, citrus fruits and brewer's yeast, here are the 6 natural solutions against fleas that are very effective and safe for canines.

Natural flea control for dogs: vinegar

Whether it's white vinegar or apple vinegar, this product helps fight fleas naturally. Simply dilute 250 ml of vinegar in the same amount of water and use this solution as a conditioner.

In addition to killing fleas and therefore treating the dog completely against parasites, this has the additional effect of making the hair silky and giving it back its shine. Care should be taken not to get vinegar in the animal's eyes or on its nose.

A crushed garlic clove to scare away fleas

You should avoid adding garlic to your dog's food because it can be toxic. However, you can crush a clove of garlic and sprinkle it on your dog's coat before rubbing it in well. The strong smell of garlic acts as a repellent. It is therefore a natural flea repellent to use before a long hike in the nature, or from time to time even if the dog spends most of his time at home.

Essential oils to treat your dog naturally against fleas

Some essential oils (EO) are well known to work naturally against fleas. They are for example:
  • True lavender EO (or true lavender),
  • Cedar EO,
  • Eucalyptus EO,
  • Thyme EO,
  • Rosemary EO,
  • Mint EO.
Be careful not to abuse and never use essential oils on a cat because they are toxic for the little feline. On the other hand, those listed above are suitable for dogs.

You can prepare a 100% natural flea repellent for dogs by putting 5 drops of one or the other of these essential oils in almond oil or in water and rubbing it into the animal's coat. Of course, avoid pouring it into the ear canal, the eyes and the nose.

Natural flea repellent for dogs: the mint and eucalyptus leaf bath

If you grow mint in a pot or in an aromatic garden and you are lucky enough to have a eucalyptus tree, don't hesitate to pick a large handful of leaves and infuse them in a liter of boiling water. After about fifteen minutes, filter and pour the liquid into a spray bottle.

This minty eucalyptus product can then be sprayed on the dog's basket but also on its coat. You can even pour a large glass of it into the bathtub to prepare a flea bath in which you just have to immerse your dog. Just be careful not to splash his eyes. You massage his coat well with this water and then dry his little companion in a large bath sheet.

If the dog does not appreciate the bathtub, one can be satisfied to vaporize its hair with this infusion and to brush it well then to let it dry naturally.

The smell of mint and eucalyptus is a good flea repellent that is safe for your dog.

Citrus fruits against fleas in dogs

They smell good and they are also effective against fleas. Citrus fruits can therefore be used to treat your dog against these undesirables. They can be used in different ways, namely:
  • Squeeze a lime or lemon and rub the juice on your dog. The same result can be obtained with oranges, grapefruits and others.
  • Prepare a homemade anti-flea lotion by adding the juice obtained after squeezing a lime or a lemon or an orange to 60 cl of water. Spray it generously on your dog's coat, but also on all the places where your pet likes to settle: carpets, chairs, sofa, armchair, basket, plaid, comforter...
  • Give your dog a citrus bath: the day before, cut slices of various citrus fruits and place them in 75 cl of boiling water, then leave to infuse overnight, covered. The next day, the lotion is collected and spread on the animal's coat. It is then necessary to rub energetically. There is no need to rinse unless the dog doesn't seem to like this deliciously scented and completely natural anti-flea lotion at all.
As for all the other solutions described here, you must of course take care to avoid the eye area.

Brewer's yeast for a flea food

Brewer's yeast is natural and effective against fleas because it is rich in thiamine hydrochloride, another name for vitamin B1. Moreover, it is safe for dogs. If you want to use it as an internal deworming agent, just put a teaspoon of brewer's yeast in your pet's food. It is good against fleas, but also very useful for the health of the dog.

In addition, nothing prevents you from rubbing your dog's fur with the equivalent of a glass of brewer's yeast and to insist that it penetrates the fur so that it can act on the skin. After two or three days, the master can pass the brush and/or a comb on the totality of the hair of his small companion to eliminate the dead fleas. The operation can be repeated every 7 or 8 days for 3 to 4 weeks.

The Fila Brasileiro, dog with a powerful appearance

This Brazilian Mastiff impresses with its powerful appearance, typical of molossoids. This force of nature is best known for its bodyguard qualities. Naturally wary of strangers, he will protect his family from all types of dangers.

Characteristics of the Fila Brasileiro

Muscular, compact and powerful, the Fila Brasileiro's body has all the characteristics of a hound. Despite its large size and developed bones, the animal reveals a harmonious and well-proportioned construction. Moreover, it is a dog known for its agility. Females measure between 60 and 70 cm and males are between 63 and 75 cm. The weight varies from 40 to 50 kg. The head is heavy, large and massive, but balanced in relation to the rest of the body. It is distinguished by a muzzle that is shorter than the skull, an almost non-existent stop seen from the front, a black nose with large nostrils and strong jaws. The eyes are of medium size, almond-shaped and have a dark brown or amber color. The ears are rather large at the base, hanging and of accentuated thickness. They form a sort of V. The Fila Brasileiro has a short hair, but at the same time silky and very dense. The coat can be of various colors. Blue, black and tan, mouse gray and white are not allowed by the standard.

History of the Fila Brasileiro breed

There are several theories explaining the origins of the Fila Brasileiro. The most extensive research on this subject has shown that the breed arrived in Brazil thanks to the Dutch of the West India Company around the 17th century. It is said to be the result of a cross between several molossoids, including Mastiffs, Mastiffs and Bloodhounds. The animal was mainly used to guard the herds and the sugar cane plantations. In the 19th century, improvements were made to the breed and Spanish Greyhound blood was added so that the dog gained speed and agility. On January 1, 1960, it was officially recognized by the FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale).

Living conditions and behavior of the Fila Brasileiro

The Brazilian Mastiff has a deterrent aspect that tends to arouse fear. This is a good thing, since the main role of the animal is to guard by scaring strangers. It is clear that this dog does not like strangers, certainly because of its historical origins as a guard dog. He will protect his family against criminals and can even be aggressive if the situation requires it. A real quiet force, the Fila Brasileiro can also be calm, cuddly, sensitive, gentle, loyal and even a glue pot. He enjoys playing, but it is important not to make too much physical effort to spare his joints. Being obedient and docile, this dog is easy to train. For his well-being, it is better to offer him the tranquility of a country life rather than urban agitation.

Diet and main health problems of the Fila Brasileiro

The Fila Brasileiro is a robust animal, but its slow growth, like that of all molosses, requires an adapted lifestyle and diet. Over the years, some individuals may also develop herniated discs or hip dysplasia due to their large size.

The Griffon Nivernais, a dog with a rustic appearance

Its rustic aspect and its very bushy coat can put off many people. However, you have to look beyond its physical appearance, because the Griffon Nivernais is a solid and balanced dog that makes a great companion dog and a formidable hunting dog.

Characteristics of the Griffon Nivernais

The Griffon Nivernais immediately attracts the eye with its very rustic and shaggy style. A "Barbouillaud", it develops a robust appearance with a muscular structure and "dry" limbs that allow it to be more enduring than fast. This dog measures between 53 and 60 cm in females and between 55 and 62 cm in males, for an approximate weight of 25 kg. It has a light, lean, medium-length head. Flat, the skull is broad without exaggeration and has a stop that is not very accentuated, but which gives the impression of being so when the hair that covers the head is raised. The Griffon Nivernais has a black nose, a muzzle of the same length as the skull, as well as developed jaws of robust appearance. The eyes give off a penetrating and lively look. They are covered with a very dense eyebrow that barely allows the dark tone of the eye to be noticed. The ears for their part are flexible, drooping and slightly fine. As for the coat, it is long and bushy, giving a disheveled aspect to the animal. The dress can be of various colors, but always charcoal.

History of the Griffon Nivernais breed

The Griffon Nivernais is a rather old breed. Its existence goes back to more than 200 years. It would be resulting from a crossing between the Chien gris de Saint-Louis and the dogs of Hautes-Pyrénées. The great kingdoms that followed used this breed to hunt wild boars and wolves. The popularity of the Griffon Nivernais declined, however, during the reign of François I, who removed it from the royal packs and replaced it with other breeds. The dog was close to extinction without the intervention of a few gentlemen of the Nivernais. It is said that the breed was improved towards the end of the 19th century with the addition of Foxhound, Vendeen and Otterhound blood.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Griffon Nivernais

The Griffon Nivernais has all the qualities expected of a hunting dog. It is resistant, lively, energetic, courageous and has a developed spirit of initiative. At home, he is a pleasant companion, attached to his masters, obedient and calm even if he tends to be sometimes independent and stubborn. Like many hounds, the Griffon Nivernais does not like to be alone. Its ideal lifestyle would be in the country in a house with a garden. City life is not recommended.

Diet and main health problems of the Griffon Nivernais

The Griffon Nivernais is not prone to any specific disease. One of the regular health follow-ups to be done concerns especially its ears. They must be monitored, as their drooping nature can lead to certain pathologies. As for food, the Griffon Nivernais being very active, it needs a sufficient energy supply and of course, all the essential nutrients.

Arrival of a child at home, how to manage the reactions of my dog?

A birth is announced? Congratulations! For a child, growing up with a dog brings many benefits by contributing to his awakening and education. However, your four-legged friend is very attached to his routine and may be disturbed by the upcoming change. Here are some tips on how to prepare your dog for the arrival of a new member of the household.

Before the baby arrives

Mastering your dog's obedience

First and foremost, make sure your dog's obedience is under control. If he's listening, you'll be able to ask him to go to the basket more easily if, for example, you find him too close to the newborn. If your dog has a tendency to jump, it's also important to address this bad habit, which can be risky for your child. Put the prohibitions in place as soon as possible.

Establishing new habits

You'll need to set up the new environment by rearranging the rhythm little by little. To prepare your dog, give him a little less time and attention, but don't neglect him. You need to slowly adopt a schedule that will correspond as closely as possible to the one you will have after the baby arrives. Get him used to this change gradually, while keeping in mind that your dog needs daily exercise outside the garden.

Should you ban the baby's room?

Before your child is born, decide whether or not your dog will be allowed in the baby's room. If you don't want him to, make him understand this prohibition by saying "no" rather than by using an obstacle such as a door, which you might forget to close one day. Remember to reward him when he obeys (with petting or treats). However, be careful not to chase him away systematically when he comes near baby's things, let him sniff to find out.

Where to allow the baby's room?

If you're thinking of allowing him into the room, let him explore the area in your presence and sniff his things. You can also teach your baby to go into the room with you, but don't allow him to go in without you. In any case, he should not leave the room with a toy that does not belong to him.

After the arrival of the baby

Let him smell an infant's clothing

Before the baby comes home, some people recommend that you let the dog smell something the baby wore in the hospital or clinic. Ask your veterinarian first if this is appropriate for your dog's temperament. If so, ask someone close to you to bring home a blanket, cloth or piece of clothing that your child has been wrapped in and have your dog sniff it. This way, he'll already know the scent of his new family member.

Making first contact

On the day you return home, wait for the dog to come to you and greet him as usual, warmly, without pushing him away. Under your close supervision, let him initiate the first contact and allow him to sniff the baby. Depending on his reaction, gently approach your child by presenting his legs or feet, but not his face. In the vast majority of cases, the dog understands very quickly that this new inhabitant is important in the household and will be gentle with him.

Dealing with the baby's cries and screams

Screaming and crying are inevitable. You and your dog, who has a much better sense of hearing than we do, will have to get through this turbulence calmly. When your baby cries, invite the dog to come and see him with you to get him used to it and reassure him. On the other hand, if you observe your pet in a state of stress, offer to move him to another room or to go out in the garden to calm him down. Do not pet your pet as this may reinforce the behavior.

Walking with your child and dog

Bring your dog along when you walk your child in the stroller. He'll get used to the new exercise and won't feel left out. It's important to have taught your child to walk on a leash near you beforehand. If your dog pulls, correct this behavior. If necessary, call an educator or ask your veterinarian to help you with this training. Under no circumstances should you attach the leash to the stroller.

Establish moments of sharing

When you're holding your baby, don't push your dog away because he'll see the new arrival as a nuisance. Try to share pleasant moments together: let him approach and settle down with you. When you give the baby milk, invite your four-legged friend to join you. You can even offer your baby a treat if he or she is standing quietly beside you. In general, pet and reward your dog more when your baby is around. This will help him associate his presence with a positive environment.

Make time for your dog

Choose a time each day when you're just looking after your dog. Continue to give your dog attention by doing activities with him that will stimulate him physically and mentally. Playing games and showing affection will help prevent him from feeling left behind. Preserve your pet's usual places: the location of its basket, its food bowls, a space with its pillow and its favorite toys where it can always take refuge.

Teaching your child respect

It is recommended to educate your child as soon as possible on the behavior to adopt with your dog. You should not allow your baby to see him as a toy to which he will pull his tail, ears or hair. He must respect him and you must never let the child disturb your dog when he is calm in his basket or while he is eating. It is imperative to remain vigilant during the different contacts between them.

Do not leave a child and a dog alone

Never leave a baby with a dog without adult supervision because a young child does not yet have good control over his movements and, as he does not yet know dog language, he will not be able to decipher the signals given by the animal before biting. Always refuse to let your dog growl at your child and if this happens, intervene quickly and firmly, but without being aggressive.

Take care of your child's hygiene

With the arrival of an infant, take hygiene measures. A visit to your veterinarian is necessary to establish a small health check-up of your dog, to treat him against external parasites (fleas and ticks) and to administer a deworming treatment, to be renewed every season for an adult. Since various diseases can be transmitted from a pet to a child, it is recommended to disinfect objects that the baby brings to its mouth and that the doggie may have licked.

Now, all that's left to do is to equip yourself with a camera to immortalize the tender moments to come between your baby and his future best friend.

Is the pit bull necessarily a dangerous dog?

It is said that he is a very aggressive and violent dog. The American Pitbull Terrier has a reputation that is not very glorious, especially due to its past. But in reality, this animal is faithful and affectionate. Its character depends on the education it has received.

Origins and physical characteristics of the pit bull

The Pitbull has the same size as the molossoids even if it is not part of this category. It impresses by its lively air and its very strong muscles. It has a rather short body and a short tail compared to the body. The Pitbull has a round and imposing head with semi-erect ears. The eyes are rather small and round. The Pitbull has a coat with short hair. The dress as for it can raise various colors: white, fawn, black, red, brown...

Concerning its origins, it is necessary to know that this breed is not recent since it would have appeared towards the 18th or 19th century and would be resulting from a crossing between the terrier and the bulldog. At that time, the Pitbull was already used as a fighting dog against bears or bulls. Later on, it became a guard dog, but also a herding dog. From the 80's on, breeders started to develop the breed again, but with bad intentions since the dogs are mainly used as guard dogs or fighting dogs. Everything is done to develop their aggressiveness.

A dog victim of preconceived ideas

Since then, this reputation of aggressive dog has not left the Pitbull. In France, this dog has even been classified as a dangerous dog. The law is therefore very strict about them. Owners are not allowed to give or sell these dogs on French territory. Pitbulls can only be owned by people of legal age and must never be let out without a leash or muzzle. They are not allowed to walk in public places or be on public transportation.

The Pitbull is considered dangerous even though many owners testify to the good character of this dog. The only problem is that it cannot be owned by people who have no experience in dog training or who are first-time dog owners. Indeed, the Pitbull has an overflowing energy that it is very important to channel. Also, this dog is not made to evolve in an apartment or, in this case, at the limit, it is necessary to take him out as regularly as possible each day so that he stretches himself.

Rules to follow before taking in a pit bull

The Pitbull is not genetically disposed to be aggressive. On the contrary, it is a very cuddly and affectionate animal that is also obedient, attentive and very intelligent compared to other dogs. You just have to give him the essentials: attention, a good education and, above all, a lot of space so that he can exercise. Be careful, as he does not know his strength, it is not recommended to leave him with small children without supervision.

Putting down your dog or euthanizing it: why, when, how?

Euthanasia is a veterinary act consisting in ending the life of an animal prematurely, or in giving up a so-called "natural" death. Of course, it is a trying and heartbreaking act for the owner and the family who has lived with the dog for a long time, but unfortunately, it is better in some cases to take the decision to end the life of your companion for his own good. This is not a cruel choice, but a decision made out of love and compassion.

Let's take a look at euthanasia to find out when it is appropriate to do so and how to prepare for it.

When should a dog be put down?

There are many cases where euthanasia is the best decision to make:

A too advanced age

Indeed, some dogs that have become too old are extremely diminished physically. Your dog may suffer from various problems due to its age, such as arthritis or cataracts, it may have become deaf, or many other things. When the dog gets to the point where it is so physically diminished that it no longer eats, drinks, cannot make a movement without squeaking and therefore becomes amorphous, the best decision is unfortunately to put it out of its misery.

A serious accident

Sometimes a dog can be the victim of a serious accident, for example if it is hit by a moving car. Even when you manage to reach an emergency veterinary clinic, it is sometimes too late and the veterinarian will tell you that the only way to help your dog so that it does not suffer anymore is to euthanize it. This is a very painful moment that will force you to make a serious decision without being prepared, but you must tell yourself that this is the only way to help your companion.

A degenerative disease

Some dogs, especially with age, can develop a disease, not necessarily fatal but extremely disabling and painful. This is the case, for example, of an arthritis at a too advanced stage. In any case, if your dog has a disease that makes him suffer too much, your veterinarian will talk to you about euthanasia, the only way to relieve him of his suffering.

We have seen the cases where euthanasia is certainly the best way to help your companion. But there are also other cases where dogs are euthanized, and this without the agreement of their master:

A dog judged aggressive

Some dogs, often because of mistreatment by humans who have traumatized them in the past, become very aggressive, and even dangerous for the people around them. Sometimes, in spite of all the resocialization work done by professionals, nothing is done and the dog remains aggressive. In this case, after a behavioral study, the choice to euthanize the animal can be made.


Unfortunately, it happens that, in shelters, dogs are euthanized due to a lack of space or budget for their basic needs, i.e. feeding and caring for them, because they cannot find a master and the shelters are overcrowded. That's why we can't advise you enough to adopt your animals from a shelter rather than from another one, it can save animals.

How does a euthanasia take place?

Euthanasia is a supervised medical procedure performed by professionals who love animals, namely veterinarians, and who will therefore perform this act with great respect for the animal.

At first, the dog will be placed on an operating table, immobile. If he is nervous and gets too agitated, which could make him suffer even more or disrupt the operation, he will be given a sedative to help him calm down.

The veterinarian will then inject an overdose of anesthetic, and the animal will gradually fall asleep, without pain.

About ten minutes later, the veterinarian will check the dog's condition with a stethoscope, listening to whether or not the heart is still beating.

Once the dog is dead, it will be buried or buried in accordance with legal requirements.

Your presence during the euthanasia

Your presence during the operation is not mandatory. It can indeed reassure your dog during its last journey, but if you do not feel like living this very hard moment, nothing obliges you to do so.

You can also, if the clinic has the necessary tools, ask for the euthanasia to be done by catheter, the product will be sent remotely by a pipe, and this will allow you to be alone with your friend for his last breath.

Finally, if you wish, you can have a veterinarian come to your home.

The cost of a euthanasia

A euthanasia represents a certain cost, depending on the weight of the animal. Count between 30 and 100€ on average for a euthanasia, but it will sometimes be necessary to add the price of the cremation, between 50 and 150€.

Remember to ask your veterinarian for these details before the act, it is better to avoid an additional bad surprise during your mourning.

Finally, you should know that some insurances offer formulas that cover the costs of euthanasia and cremation.

Is it true that the chocolate Labrador is more fragile than others?

The life expectancy of a dog is linked to its lifestyle, its diet, but also to its breed, and therefore to its size or weight. In some cases, it can even be linked to its color, as surprising as it may seem. For example, the chocolate colored Labrador has a shorter life span than other black or sand colored Labradors. Let's take a closer look.

Fragility of the chocolate Labrador: genetics in question

A scientific study conducted by a university in Sydney (Australia) has allowed researchers to look at the particularities of the brown Labrador or chocolate Labrador, but also more specifically at the health of Labradors in general living on the soil of the United Kingdom. The number of dogs on which this study was based is still 33 000. The scientists therefore have a large amount of electronic data and markers that have allowed them to draw certain conclusions.

The chocolate color can only be passed on to a puppy if both his father and mother have passed on the DNA portion that gives him this coat color. This is why it is said to be recessive. Some breeders who wish to produce litters of chocolate Labradors select their males and females at the time of mating. But as these dogs are quite few in number, they are confronted with restricted lines and a limited gene pool during sexual crosses.

It is clear that the genetic pool of the chocolate Labrador is reduced, because the more the genetic pool is limited, the more the risk of developing certain pathologies increases.

Pathologies more frequent in the chocolate Labrador than in other Labrador Retrievers

It has been scientifically found that the chocolate Labrador is more susceptible to certain health problems, as described below. This seems to be a consequence of the very rarity of this variety of Labrador. When the pigmentation is created, the so-called "accidental" risks are more numerous, as explained by the scientists who studied this case.

Pyotraumatic dermatitis

This is a skin condition that manifests itself in the form of hot spots. It affects more particularly the rump, the neck, the ears and the cheeks of the animal. It is responsible for increasingly virulent itching, so much so that the dog scratches constantly and insistently. The scratching, biting and licking become obsessive and lead to sores and then to infections and skin superinfections.

At the beginning of the disease, perfectly delimited red patches appear with a more or less swollen center. The hair on and around these patches falls out. Pus leaks out and sticks to the other hairs in the affected area. The purulent lesion frequently becomes crusted and has a peculiar bad smell. Gradually, the patches may spread to a greater or lesser extent.

The main causes of pyotraumatic dermatitis are flea bites, sarcoptic mange, inflammation of the anal glands, irritation of a harmless wound and otitis.

Depending on the extent of the animal's reaction to the disease in question, hotspots may or may not appear because they are not systematic. This is why it is imperative to limit the risks of proliferation of bacteria in the upper layers of the dog's skin by avoiding scratching, biting or licking its wounds. In any case, it is very important to consult the veterinarian without delay.

Pyotraumatic dermatitis affects more than 4% of chocolate Labradors, while less than 1% of black or sand Labradors are affected by it.

Otitis externa is common in chocolate Labradors

It is a prevalence in these dogs. The inflammation of the external auditory canal is called otitis externa. It is about 13% in black Labradors, almost 17% in beige Labradors and reaches almost 24% in chocolate Labradors.

Obesity, more important in brown Labradors

This is another health problem that affects chocolate Labradors more frequently than others. But knowing this, the owner can take precautions to prevent obesity in his little friend. It is essential that these dogs receive a strictly balanced diet and are able to get enough exercise every day. As a reminder, obesity affects nearly 9% of chocolate Labradors.

The life expectancy of the chocolate Labrador is reduced by 10% compared to that of a sable or black Labrador. Thus, for a life expectancy of about 12 years for black or light-colored dogs of this breed, brown-coated individuals have a life expectancy of less than 11 years, a significant difference.

The Kai, a dog with a strong temperament from Japan

Originating from the country of the Rising Sun, the Kai is a particularly rare breed that is distinguished by its typical Spitz appearance. Its assertive temperament does not prevent it from being a good pet.

Characteristics of the Kai

The Kai is a medium-sized dog with a robust and harmonious constitution and a pronounced musculature. Like most dogs that come from the Japanese mountains, it also has very pronounced hocks and strong legs. Female dogs are on average 48 cm tall and males are about 53 cm. The weight depends on the sex and the size and goes from 15 to 25 kg. The Kai has a head with a broad forehead and a sharp stop. The muzzle is quite pointed as in most Spitzes. The nose is black, the jaws are strong and the lips are tight. Physically, the Kai has all the characteristics of a fox. Its eyes in triangle are small and dark brown. The ears are of medium size and triangle shaped as well. To conform to the standard, the Kai must have a short coat and a brindle, red brindle and black brindle. Because of this specific pattern, the Kai is often called Tora Inu which means "tiger dog".

History of the Kai breed

Like many Japanese breeds, the origins of the Kai are relatively unclear. It seems to have developed in the green and mountainous regions southwest of Tokyo, in the Kai district now known as Yamanashi. Its existence dates back to the 5th to the 15th century, but the first selections only started in the 18th century. The animal owes its fame to the prosecutor of the city of Kofu, Daisuke Adachi, who was attracted by the brindle coat of the dog. In 1934, the Kai was awarded the title of national monument in Japan due to its purity, among other things.

Living conditions and behavior of the Kai

The Kai is not the most recommended breed for company. It is not really known to be demonstrative and is known to have a strong temperament. This does not prevent it from developing many other qualities. Indeed, it is an active breed, faithful, very alert and endowed with a lot of intelligence. It is also very independent and calm when necessary. The Kai can also be a good watchdog, as it is reserved when dealing with strangers. For its well-being, this dog needs the maximum of physical activities, whether it lives in town or in the country. Tracking activities, among others, will do him a lot of good if he does not practice hunting.

Diet and main health problems of the Kai

The Kai is a primitive dog that is distinguished by its robustness. Since its genetics has been little manipulated, it does not show any specific hereditary disease. To keep him in good shape, it is enough to provide him with a diet adapted to his lifestyle and health.

The Hovawart, intelligent and versatile dog

Chosen for its companionship, the Hovawart can also take on the role of guard dog, search dog or even dog for the disabled. One thing is certain: this breed shines for its versatility.

Characteristics of the Hovawart

The Hovawart is a medium-sized utility dog with a rectangular body that is aesthetically pleasing and balanced. Females measure between 55 and 65 cm while males are between 60 and 70 cm. Depending on the sex and age, the dog can weigh between 27 and 40 kg. The Hovawart is recognizable by its strong head, its rounded and broad forehead and its well accentuated stop. The strong muzzle, the joined lips and the nose, which can be snowy or black depending on the color of the coat, are some of the animal's special features. The dark brown eyes are oval shaped and have a balanced appearance. As for the ears, the triangle shape as well as the high attachment allow to recognize the Hovawart. It has a thick, long and wavy coat that can be blond, solid black or with tan markings.

History of the Hovawart breed

The Hovawart comes from Germany and is a very old dog that has been mentioned since the Middle Ages. Its name means "farm guard". Indeed, it was mainly used for this task. This dog has undergone severe selections during its life. An improvement was made by crossing with the Leonberger, the Newfoundland or the German Shepherd. Moreover, one of the founders of the German Shepherd Club, Captain von Stephaniz, even indicated that the Hovawart was an ancestor of the German Shepherd. Like many breeds, it almost perished during the Second World War. Fortunately, interest in this dog continued to grow among breeders, which allowed it, among other things, to finally be officially recognized by the FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale) on November 21, 1955.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Hovawart

As a pet, the Hovawart has many qualities. It is of kind nature, attached to its family and especially endowed with a great intelligence which enables him to understand the orders very quickly. It is the ideal companion for children. Its sporting nature makes it tireless in the sessions of games. Versatile, the Hovawart is able to lead the guard thanks to its very developed instinct of protection. It is also used as a police and security dog and to accompany disabled people. As for his lifestyle, although he can live in the city, it is preferable to offer him a house with a garden rather than a tiny apartment.

Diet and main health problems of the Hovawart

The average life expectancy of the Hovawart is 14 years. One of the diseases that can greatly impact its health is hip dysplasia which has been very common in this breed. However, the percentage of occurrence of this defect, especially in Germany, has decreased enormously thanks to drastic selections. In addition to dysplasia, the animal can also be affected by degenerative myelopathy. Appearing around the age of ten years, the pathology very often affects the German Shepherd. It affects the spinal cord and causes the loss of motor skills in the hindquarters. Eventually, the dog suffers a cardiac arrest.

Diabetes in dogs: causes, symptoms and treatment

As with humans, diabetes in dogs can lead to serious complications. The main causes of diabetes are very diverse and not all of them have been identified yet. When a dog has diabetes, certain symptoms should alert the owner. A consultation is necessary so that a treatment can be prescribed, a dietary rebalancing can be set up and the owner can allow his little companion to have a regular physical activity. Let's take stock.

Diabetes in dogs: the main causes

Diabetes mellitus is a serious endocrine pathology whose evolution, at first rather discreet, leads to very serious complications. It is therefore imperative that the diagnosis of diabetes be made as early as possible so that the animal can benefit from an adapted treatment and its condition can improve.

This disease, which is still not well known, is becoming more and more frequent in dogs. Currently, between 3.5 and 5% of dogs are affected. Diabetes is more common in older animals, but this does not exclude that a young adult dog can also suffer from this disease.

There are family predispositions. However, it is known that obese dogs are more prone to diabetes, as are unspayed female dogs because of their hormonal cycles. Finally, the risk of diabetes may be increased in dogs (male and/or female) undergoing treatment with corticosteroids or contraceptive drugs.

Diabetes in dogs: symptoms that should alert you

Generally, when a dog suffers from an abnormally high level of glucose in the blood, it presents several of the following symptoms
  • Intense thirst and consequently increased water consumption,
  • Weight loss for no particular reason,
  • A lack of interest in interacting with his owner or with other dogs,
  • A great fatigue,
  • An increase in the volume of urine which inevitably leads to some accidents of cleanliness, especially at night: the dog urinates in the house when it never happened to him,
  • Urine that seems sticky,
  • His eyes become white because of the opacification of the cornea,
  • A rapid and significant decrease in visual acuity, even blindness.
The owner may find that in a short time his dog has aged because he no longer has the same spirit as before and especially no longer takes part in games. Moreover, when the animal forgets itself on the floor or tiles, its abundant urine appears sticky because it contains sugar. This is a telltale sign of diabetes and warrants a consultation without delay.

Diabetes in dogs: the risks of complications

It is important to note that some owners, often because they are not aware of the symptoms their dog is suffering from, do not suspect them. However, if not taken care of, diabetes intensifies, does damage and when the owner is finally alerted by a change in the health of his little companion, it is because he is already suffering from serious complications. It is important to know that diabetes can lead to:
  • A diabetic cataract,
  • Blindness,
  • Recurrent infections,
  • A kidney problem,
  • Death of the dog.
At the slightest clinical sign, do not hesitate to make an appointment with the veterinarian.

Diabetes in dogs: treatment

The effects of this disease can be greatly mitigated with targeted management, even if the diabetic dog cannot be completely cured.

The treatment is based on the sterilization of female dogs in order to suppress hormonal cycles, as these impact the balance of the disease. In addition, a change in the dog's lifestyle brings a clear improvement in its state of health as long as the animal also receives the necessary insulin injections. These injections compensate for the insufficient production of insulin (hormone) by the pancreatic cells. Twice a day, in the vast majority of cases, the master himself must inject this hormone under the skin of his little companion thanks to a very fine graduated needle that causes no pain.

Note that veterinary insulin can also be injected into the dog using an injector pen into which a cartridge is simply inserted. A small knob allows you to choose, with the greatest precision, the dose determined by the practitioner. This makes the injection even more comfortable for the animal than using a needle. The pen injector is often preferred by owners of diabetic dogs because it is easy to use and extremely reliable.

Concerning the modification of the lifestyle of the dog suffering from diabetes mellitus, it is based on :
  • The fight against obesity,
  • An adapted and controlled diet in order to regulate the glycemia. The diet must be determined by the veterinarian. It does not contain any fast sugars and few lipids of vegetable origin. The diet must be sufficiently rich in vitamins, minerals and trace elements because diabetes leads to an excessive elimination of these nutrients through the urine. Also a supplementation can be recommended. Each food ration is made up of :
    • Either food specifically elaborated for dogs suffering from diabetes. The owner can find them in specialized shops,
    • Or rations prepared at home: they must be perfectly balanced in proteins, fiber (green vegetables) and slow sugars (rice, pasta).
  • Very regular meal times,
  • No eating outside of meal times,
  • Maintaining (or resuming) a daily physical activity outside, at regular times,
  • Avoiding excessive physical activity until the disease has stabilized. Thus, the duration of walks is reasonable and intensive work is avoided, especially for hunting dogs or herding dogs, for example.
Finally, it is important to know that the support of a veterinary team is essential in parallel with the treatment and a healthy lifestyle for the diabetic dog to get better. If all the conditions are rigorously respected, the animal can live serenely for several years.

Top 10 sled dog breeds

Welcome to the special world of sled dogs! Here are the top 10 breeds used for sledding. The Fédération Cynologique Internationale recognizes 6 of them (from 1 to 6), to which we have added 4 other breeds, very much used in sledding.

1- The Alaskan Malamute

The Mahlemiuts from which the dog takes its name are an Inuit people living in the Gulf of Kotzebue, Alaska. The uninitiated may confuse it with the Husky, but its tail is straightened and curved, unlike the Husky in which the tail is drooping.

It is a powerful and robust breed. Malamutes are capable of pulling heavy loads. But it is not a fast dog. For races, we prefer other breeds.

Its resistance to cold is due to its long coat that protects a dense and woolly undercoat. This density is not synonymous with softness and its coat is rough.

2- The Greenlander

The Greenlander is genetically a dog close to the wolf. This breed of dog was widely used during the great polar expeditions: the Greenlander was present alongside Admiral Robert Peary at the North Pole in 1909, Roald Amundsen at the South Pole in 1911, Knut Rasmussen between 1921 and 1924, and Paul-Émile Victor in all his expeditions. It was also used to transport the materials necessary for the construction of the Jungfrau railway in Switzerland, which was done in 1913 at altitude, in the snow.

This breed of dogs offers a good compromise between speed and endurance, an effective balance between the velocity of the Husky and the power of the Malamute.

Without the intervention of breeders who had at heart to preserve the species, the appearance of snowmobiles in the Canadian Arctic would have made this breed disappear.

3- The Siberian Husky

Known for its blue eyes, this dog was very fashionable for a while. But a sled dog is not a lap dog, and this fashion has led to many abandonments. Indeed, the Husky is a working dog, appreciated for its strength and speed. This is what makes it an excellent racing dog.

The Siberian Husky was bred by the Chukchi, a nomadic tribe in eastern Siberia. The puppies were selected on their natural taste for traction. The females were eliminated at birth, except those particularly suitable for reproduction.

It was in 1925 that these dogs became famous. That year, they were the actors of a true story. Diphtheria had broken out in the town of Nome, located in the extreme west of Alaska. In order to provide the inhabitants with medicine, the railroad did not cover the entire distance, so a relay of carriages made up of these dogs was organized over 1000 km.

4- The Samoyed

Samoyeds are not used much for races because their speed performance is poor.

It is the breed of sled dogs that barks the most, which makes it a very good guard dog. They are mischievous by nature and are playful, often tying knots in the line or disturbing their neighbor. He is probably the least aggressive of all the dogs in the carriage, being particularly confident with humans.

5- The Canadian Eskimo

This dog is also called "qimmiq", an Inuit word for a versatile working dog. The snowmobile has also threatened this breed whose number of specimens was only 200 in the 1970s. It is still rare today.

6- The Yakutian Laika

These dogs have, like the Husky, light blue eyes. They are dogs classified among the primitive dogs. Their education is therefore demanding, perhaps a little less than those required by other sled dogs. He seems to be able to adapt to life indoors, especially since he is strongly attached to his home and his master. During walks, his hunting instincts may take over and cause him to flee.

7- The Sakhalin Husky

This is a very rare dog that resists the worst conditions. A very real story proves it. In 1958, Japanese researchers organized an expedition to Antarctica. Forced to evacuate in emergency, they left 15 sled dogs of different breeds with a little food, thinking to come back for them later. Finally, it was only a year later that some men returned to the camp. Only two dogs had survived: they were both Sakhalin Husky. This story was adapted into a film released in 1983 under the title Antarctica.

Despite all the qualities inherent in these breeds, mushers continued to make crosses to obtain faster dogs. Here are 3 breeds created:

8- The Alaskan

The dogs used to create this breed are :

Husky type dogs (Siberian Husky, Sakhalin Husky, and Husky crossbreeds),
dogs like North American Indian Dogs, a kind of wolfhound, or slender European dogs, known for their speed, like greyhounds, English Pointers, English Setters, and Pointer dogs.

9- The Eurohound

The Eurohound is more commonly known as the European Sled Dog. This breed is a cross between Alaskans, English Pointers and German Shorthaired Pointer. It is particularly adapted for sprint type races: high speed over a short distance.

His gait is very different from all the dogs mentioned so far. It does not have the medium-long coat of all the others. His short coat reveals an athletic morphology and underlines a very slender look.

10- Greyster

Like the Eurohound, the Greyster has a short coat. These dogs are a cross between a Greyhound and a German Shorthaired Pointer. The size of these dogs exceeds that of other sled dogs. They are used more in tamdem than in larger groups. Running and mountain biking enthusiasts will appreciate these dogs to accompany them on their runs.

The dogs and the team

There are traces of dogs being used in carriage driving 6000 years before our era. However, it is mainly the Inuit culture that developed this practice at the end of the first millennium of our era.

In Europe, the use of dogs in carriage driving in the 19th century is proven by police regulations that prohibit these practices in Versailles and Paris, as well as by photographs. Despite the bans, these practices continue. In France and Belgium, dogs were used by the poorest social classes, small farmers and market gardeners, street traders, salesmen, and other nomadic occupations such as remoaners, ragpickers... The dog was then the horse of the poor. The dogs were also very present at the side of the gold diggers in Alaska.

The Puli, the hairiest dog in the world

Did you know that the Puli is the hairiest dog in the world? Although it has big braids similar to dreadlocks, this dog does not come from Jamaica, but rather from Hungary, hence the name Hungarian Puli. A breed that is efficient in herding and guarding.

Characteristics of the Puli

The Puli has a physique that is out of the ordinary, to say the least. It has a physical appearance similar to that of the Komondor. The dog has a coat so thick that it is relatively complicated to describe its body and head. The standard speaks about an animal of robust constitution and of average size which measures between 37 and 41 cm if it is a female and between 40 and 44 cm if it is a male. The weight varies from 10 to 15 kg. As far as the head is concerned, we know at least that the skull is thin and small and that the stop is not very accentuated. The dog has a black and small nose, dark and tense lips and a non-pointed muzzle. From what can be discerned of the eyes, they appear to be dark brown and of medium size. The ears are drooping and of medium size. Now it's time to talk about the famous coat that the Puli is known for. The dense tufts of hair with a coarse texture form rope-like strands or highly structured flakes. The entire dog is covered with these twists, the length and density of which will vary depending on the area of the body. The coat can be white, apricot, gray, black or rusty black.

History of the Puli breed

The Puli is an ancient breed. Originally from Hungary, it is said to have been introduced into the country during the invasions of the Magyar nomads. Specialized in herding, it underwent very drastic selections since the subjects less efficient in the task were directly eliminated by the breeders. Because of these practices, the dog became fast, very rustic, but especially of a rare intelligence. It almost disappeared around the 19th century without the intervention of enthusiasts who established its standard in 1915. The Puli is not well known outside its country of origin. However, its popularity rose when the boss of the social network Facebook Mark Zuckerberg was seduced by the hairball and adopted it.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Puli

The Puli is very endearing. It is an affectionate animal that tends to be clingy if it feels it lacks affection. It is rather calm and reserved and at the same time very clever and lively. It can get along with children with whom it likes to play. The Puli is also a good watchdog, as it is wary of strangers and knows how to distinguish malicious people. They are easy to train and adapt easily to urban life, provided they are given appropriate physical activity.

Puli Diet and Key Health Concerns

The Puli has a life expectancy of 14 years. It is robust, but this does not prevent it from being affected by certain diseases such as hip dysplasia, cataracts, patella luxation, skin problems, heart problems or progressive retinal atrophy.

The Porcelain or Franche-Comté dog

It owes its name to its transparent white coat which reminds the appearance of porcelain. The Franche-Comté Dog, affectionately known as the Porcelain, is an extremely old French breed that has built its reputation on its hunting skills.

Characteristics of the Porcelaine

Of medium size, the Porcelaine is distinguished by its elegant shape and distinguished appearance. Its muscular body and harmonious bone structure give it a vigorous and athletic appearance. It is a dog clearly cut for speed. It measures on average between 50 and 58 cm. Its weight goes from 20 to 25 kg. There is no big difference in measurements between the male and the female. The Porcelain is recognizable by its sculpted head which reminds the shape of a pear with a large skull, a flat forehead and a stop relatively accentuated, but without excess. The muzzle is of correct length and ends in a bustle while displaying a black and developed nose. The dog has a look full of softness and intelligence which has a dark color. It is also distinguished by its large, thin, floppy ears that reach the muzzle. As for the coat, it is short, shiny, fine and tight. Thick and coarse hair is not tolerated. The standard admits only the white dresses strewn with small orange markings.

History of the breed Porcelain

The origins of the Franche-Comté Dog are not known with any accuracy. There is very little to say on the subject. It is known that the breed is one of the oldest in the country. Coming straight from Franche-Comté, it would be a descendant of the white Saint-Hubert of Lorraine and the White Dogs of the Roys. During the Ancien Régime, the animal would have been called "Briquet Franc Comtois" and was mainly used in the hunting of blood game. The name Porcelaine would have been given by Théodore de Foudras, a dog writer. This breed almost became extinct during the Revolution if it wasn't for the passion of a few breeders who brought it back to life in the 19th century.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Porcelain Dog

The Porcelain is a hunting dog par excellence. Sporting, courageous and impetuous, it develops a lot of vigor and an excellent nose. It is also recognized a very beautiful voice. This breed can be used for company. Joy of living, constancy, fidelity and affection are part of its many qualities. This dog can become a good companion for children. To be happy, it absolutely needs long daily walks that will allow it to spend all its energy.

Food and main health problems of the Porcelain

The Porcelain is an energetic and vigorous animal, it needs a sufficient energy supply. Its diet must be adapted to its lifestyle, weight and health. On this point, it is necessary to watch the problems of stomach turning. Daily rations must be divided in two and physical activities after meals are prohibited.

What does a health insurance for dogs cover? Which guarantees ?

The guarantees of a mutual health insurance contract for dogs depend on the chosen formula. This is why it is important not to subscribe lightly. You can use a pet health insurance comparator to compare each contract proposed. This allows you to subscribe to the one that offers the desired coverage at the best rate. Between the basic formula and the high-end formula, the guarantees are far from being comparable. Let's take a closer look.

Is it useful to insure your dog with an animal health insurance ?

As an indication, for a dog in perfect health, the annual budget in France for routine visits is between 180 and 300 $. In addition, there are the costs of sterilization, vaccination, medication, examinations and other procedures in case of accident or illness. The bill can climb considerably and destabilize the finances of the pet owner. If he has a low income and his dog is not insured, he may have to give up - with a heavy heart - to have his little companion treated.

Taking out a health insurance policy is therefore very important if you love your dog and want to ensure the best possible living conditions for it, whatever the circumstances. Indeed, when the dog can benefit from sufficient guarantees, his owner reduces considerably his expenses.

Finally, there is not much difference between health insurance for humans and those that take care of dogs.

Health insurance for dogs: guarantees vary according to the formula chosen

In general, pet health insurance companies offer at least three formulas, namely
  • A basic or entry-level plan that covers only the main care following an accident.
  • A mid-range plan that covers major illness or accident care.
  • A high-end plan that covers all types of care, whether following an illness or an accident, including preventive procedures (sterilization, vaccination, deworming, specific lotions, dietary food, etc.). A lump sum determined in advance can even be allocated to the owner in the event of the death of his dog so that he can buy a new animal.
Each plan has a maximum reimbursement amount for one year. If the total expenses incurred by the owner are higher than the limit, the excess amount will of course be paid by the owner. It should be noted, however, that some limits are quite high and cover a good deal of care.

Pet health insurance can be considered satisfactory when the level of coverage is at least 70 or 75% for a contribution of about 20 to 28 $ per month. But for a dog whose health is fragile, it is better to turn to a contract that reimburses at least 90%. This is the case of the complete formula also called Premium formula or top-of-the-range formula.

Being well reimbursed for veterinary procedures

This allows you to take care of your dog's health without having to worry about the financial issue and this is really a problem in our country because veterinary fees are freely fixed. Even the smallest consultation is expensive... not to mention complex surgeries, imaging tests, biopsies, rehabilitation or even euthanasia and burial.

Reimbursement levels are critical when considering a policy. In general, reimbursement can range from 50% to 100% of the expenses incurred within the limit of the ceiling which varies from 800 to 2,500 $/year depending on the insurer. Obviously, the higher the level of reimbursement and the higher the ceiling, the higher the premium. So much so that the cheapest health insurance contracts for dogs are around 7 or 8 $/month, whereas the highest policies can reach 70 to 80 $/month for optimal guarantees.

Covering your dog without waiting

As soon as the health insurance contract comes into effect (as soon as you subscribe if you opt for an insurance without waiting period or at the end of this period in other cases), the owner of the insured dog can be partially or totally reimbursed for the expenses incurred for veterinary and preventive acts.

To do so, he/she just needs to send the mutual insurance company a care sheet and the receipted invoice from the veterinarian. But whatever the formula you choose, the reimbursement is always limited by an annual ceiling. If you wish to increase the level of coverage, you must opt for a complete formula.

More and more owners are trying to avoid policies with a waiting period because during this latent period, their dog is not yet covered. In case of illness or accident, all veterinary fees are still to be paid by the pet owner.

Dog health insurance: beware of the age limit!

It is strongly recommended to insure your puppy as soon as possible, from the age of 2 months, so that he can benefit from the best care all his life. This is also important because many pet insurance companies refuse any new subscription if the dog has reached the age of 6 or 7. If you want to insure your old dog, it is in your best interest to choose a dog health insurance with no age limit.

Behavioral problems in dogs: causes, symptoms and solutions

Apart from the fact that some behavioral problems can be due to aging, a dog can present behavioral problems at any age, most often related to inappropriate training or a lack of socialization. But there are many other causes. How to spot them and what to do?

Behavioral problems in dogs: main causes and associated symptoms

Poor breeding conditions impact the dog's behavior because they lead to developmental disorders in the animal. This results in:
  • Relational difficulties between the dog and its owner or interspecific disorders,
  • Communication difficulties between the dog and its conspecifics which are intraspecific disorders. These can be detected in a dog that has not had regular contact with other dogs and therefore has not integrated the canine codes.
A dog can therefore present a behavioral disorder for a very specific cause such as
  • The bad relationship or the absence of contact with its congeners. This can be translated by an extreme submission or on the contrary an aggressiveness, barking, fear...
  • Uncleanliness that can become chronic: it appears in dogs that suffer from a deep malaise (separation anxiety, stressful situation, fear of abandonment when a new child or another pet arrives at home...). It is very different from "accidental peeing" and must be taken seriously.
  • Hyper-attachment: not used to being left alone, the dog has a very hard time with the absence of his master. It may, for example, howl at death until its owner returns, relieve itself daily in the house, destroy objects or furniture, steal food...

Behavioural disorders in dogs: symptoms

The manifestations of these disorders are numerous. It can for example be :
  • Fear,
  • A permanent feverishness observed in the dog unable to manage all kinds of stimuli. This is called kennel syndrome or sensory deprivation syndrome,
  • Untimely barking,
  • Anxiety, anguish, stress,
  • Nervousness,
  • Repeated runaways,
  • Uncleanliness,
  • Coprophagia (the dog eats its excrements),
  • Aggression,
  • Hyperactivity,
  • Asociability.

Behavioral problems in dogs: you must consult a veterinarian

It is essential not to leave things as they are, because living with a dog with this type of disorder can quickly become a hellish situation or even represent a danger for the owners, the children of the family or any other person outside the family, especially when the dog is aggressive for example. In order to find the right solution, it is first of all essential to understand the reason(s) why the dog has a behavioral disorder. It is necessary to talk to the veterinarian who will have to make sure that the origin is not a disease in which case he should prescribe a treatment. In the case of uncleanliness, for example, if it is due to kidney failure, it cannot be considered a behavioral disorder.

The owner of the dog should give as much information as possible to the veterinarian, such as how often and for how long the problem has existed, how it manifests itself and under what circumstances. If the dog has a complicated life history or has been abused, it is equally important to tell the practitioner. Many dogs adopted after abandonment or after living for some time with an abusive owner often show behavioral problems.

The slightest indication is important because it can help the veterinarian to set up the most appropriate behavioral therapy. In some cases (aggressiveness, anxiety...), this therapy can be accompanied by a medical treatment based on the prescription of anxiolytics for example.

Behavioral problems in dogs: some examples of solutions

Among the main solutions allowing a dog to have better relationships with its fellow dogs in the case of intraspecific disorders, we inevitably find re-education. For this to be successful, it is preferable that the animal be taken in charge by a dog trainer or a veterinary behaviorist, or both. It is a long term work that requires patience, know-how, consistency, a perfect knowledge of the canine species and its codes. It is the same if the dog presents interspecific disorders.

Learning or relearning to walk on a leash, but also increasing the number of outings can help a runaway dog to become more manageable. Keeping a dog busy by playing and paying more attention to it than before are attitudes to adopt when faced with an animal that barks incessantly and disturbs the life of the neighborhood. All intellectual but also physical stimulation is necessary for the dog to find a certain stability.

The owner's involvement is crucial in the management of behavioral problems in dogs and he must always adopt a positive attitude. The owner should never punish the dog or even scold or yell at it. On the other hand, rewarding the dog when it obeys a consistent command is encouraging. The owner should also not overprotect his small dog from larger dogs. However, this is often the case and can lead to desocialization or excessive fear of other dogs. The overprotected dog becomes fearful and aggressive.

Whatever the behavioral disorder from which a dog suffers, therapy should never be haphazard. It starts with understanding to act in the right way by adopting the solution on a case by case basis. And one systematically applies the gentle way instead of being aggressive with the animal. If you don't have any knowledge in this field, meddling with your dog yourself can lead to even more serious problems. It is therefore essential to get professional help.

Discover 6 breeds of dwarf or toy dogs

The small dogs make crack many people. They can evolve perfectly in apartment and are good company, in particular for the children. Here is a selection of the six most famous breeds.

The Shih tzu

The Shih tzu is also known as the lion dog, even though its appearance has nothing to do with the king of animals. The Shih tzu is of Tibetan origin and is a cross between the Pekingese and the Lhasa Apso. It is distinguished by its small size since it is between 20 and 27 cm long for a maximum weight of 8 kg. This dog is known for its calm character. It is also jovial, soft and endowed with a great sociability. He loves to be pampered and to have fun. On the other hand, it can be sometimes obstinate what makes difficult its education, more especially as it does not like either to be forced to carry out orders.

The French Bulldog

The French Bulldog is another well known toy dog breed in France. It has a maximum height of 35 cm and weighs up to 14 kg. It is recognizable by its snub nose with wrinkles and folds. This dog is born from a hybridization between a ratter and an English Bulldog. Its true origins remain unclear. He is appreciated for his joy and his playful side. It is also excellent company for children.

The Chihuahua

The Chihuahua is ranked as the smallest dog in the world. And for good reason, in the standard, a Chihuahua is not more than 21 cm for an approximate weight of 3 kg. This ball of hair can be recognized by its huge, erect ears that are far apart and by its large, round eyes that reveal strong expressions. The Chihuahua is very energetic, but has difficulty tolerating the presence of strangers to whom he will bark loudly. This is why they are often used as alarm dogs.

The Maltese

The origins of this breed go back to antiquity. The Maltese is even one of the dogs listed by Aristotle in a nomenclature he drew up at the time. This dog has a very long, shiny, soft and wavy coat. It is also of small size since it does not measure more than 25 cm. With a sharp intelligence, this animal does not like to be alone and has a sweet and playful character.

The Jack Russell

With a size of 25 to 35 cm, the Jack Russel is another small dog appreciated in France. Historically, it would have originated in England. This dog is known for its great vitality. Moreover, to feel good, it needs a lot of space and can only evolve in the countryside or in houses with a garden.

The Yorkshire Terrier

He is the king of beauty contests. The Yorkshire Terrier is famous for its long, straight and very silky coat. It has a small head with a flat, small skull, sparkling eyes, a medium-sized muzzle and a black nose. An excellent pet, the Yorkshire Terrier is very affectionate, lively, but also a bit stubborn.

The Belgian Shepherd Malinois, sporty, cunning and hardworking dog

The Malinois is known for its liveliness and intelligence. But that's not all! It is also a great sportsman, a very cunning dog that will always try to accomplish tasks. Because of its innumerable abilities, the Malinois is nowadays very much in demand by the forces of order. It can also evolve in families, provided that it enjoys regular physical activities.

Characteristics of the Malinois

The Malinois belongs to the large family of Belgian Shepherds as well as the Tervueren (short hair of charcoal color and fawn), the Laekenois (rough hair of charcoal color and fawn) and the Groenendael (long hair and black). It is distinguished by its short hair and its fawn coat shaded with a grey to brown color. With a harmonious physique and a slender silhouette, the Malinois has a straight head with two small triangular ears. The eyes are medium-sized, almond-shaped and dark in color. The muzzle is long and the stop is not very pronounced. The standard of the race wants that the Malinois carries a black mask on the face.

History of the Belgian Shepherd Dog Malinois

The Malinois has its origins in Belgium. Namely, sheepdogs have existed for nearly a century in the country. However, they had different physical appearances. At the dawn of the 20th century, breeders, under the leadership of veterinarian Adolphe Reul, decided to improve the morphology of these dogs, which eventually gave birth to the four types of Belgian Shepherd Dogs. The year 1892 marks a turning point since the first standard will be fixed at this date. The registration to the LOOF will be done nine years later.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Malinois

Overflowing with vitality, very vigilant and always on the alert, the Malinois has many qualities that have earned it the recognition of the forces of law and order, which call on it for all sorts of tasks. This dog is always ready for action and is very protective of its owners. Moreover, it is preferable to educate and socialize him from a young age to avoid that he attacks all the people who come too close to you.

The Malinois has all the necessary aptitudes to be an excellent dog for defense, shepherding, guarding or service. It is neither aggressive nor timid and can evolve perfectly with children. On the other hand, it will be necessary to envisage a large house with garden to accomodate it as well as very regular sessions of walk.

Feeding and main health problems of the Belgian Shepherd Malinois

The Malinois is a hardy breed particularly robust. No specific disease is attributed to it even if, as for all the large dogs, it can potentially be touched by a dysplasia of the hip. But here again, the Malinois is less prone to this disease, compared to other dogs of this size.

The diet should be adapted to the sporting nature of the Malinois. Many nutrients, especially carbohydrates and proteins, are essential for its proper development.