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St. Hubert's Dog has a melancholic expression

The St. Hubert's Dog is a big, slow-moving, melancholic-looking fellow that will touch you with his gentleness and remarkable kindness. He has all the qualities sought after in a pet and in hunting dogs, as he was originally used for this task. But beware of his education, because he can be stubborn from time to time.

Characteristics of the Saint-Hubert Dog

The St. Hubert's Hound has an impressive build. More powerful and massive than other hounds, it develops a strong musculature, but without heaviness. Despite its strong presence, this dog keeps a lot of nobility. On average, it measures 65 cm and weighs around 50 kg. It is immediately recognizable by its very particular face which reveals a noble and massive head with a marked profile and a little accentuated stop. This one displays skin folds on its cheeks as well as on its forehead with an abundance of skin. The long and hanging lips give it a melancholic air. A feature more accentuated by its sunken eyes which definitely give him an expression of sadness. And what about his ears which are also long and falling in elegant folds. The Saint-Hubert has a short, smooth, dense and tight coat. The coat is generally bicolor with a duo of liver and tan or black and tan. It can also be single-colored red.

History of the breed Saint-Hubert

The Saint-Hubert is an ancient breed whose traces go back to the Middle Ages. Legend has it that Saint-Hubert himself intervened in the modeling of the breed to make it the perfect hunting dog. Then, it would have been imported to England by William the Conqueror. The most plausible version of the breed's history is that it comes from the town of Saint-Hubert, in Belgium. This hound with a remarkable sense of smell excelled in hunting wild boar and other large game. He then became a police dog, especially in the United States. Moreover, over there, they call him "Bloodhound".

Living conditions and behavior of the Bloodhound

The St. Hubert's Hound has a lot of qualities, which is why it is appreciated as a guard dog, hunting dog or pet. He is at the same time kind, calm and of a great softness, perfect for the children towards whom he is patient and devoted. Shy and discreet, he does not develop any sociability problems with his fellow dogs. On the other hand, he can be stubborn and needs a fair and firm education to correct this defect, especially if it is a male. Novice owners can then turn to females that are easier to live with.

Diet and main health problems of the Saint-Hubert

Its skin and eyes are the main organs to watch carefully. The Saint-Hubert can suffer from luxation of the kneecap and hip dysplasia, common pathologies in large dogs. Beware also of stomach torsion. As for his diet, he is an incorrigible gourmet. Its rations must be controlled to avoid overweight.

The Ariegeois, playful and sociable dog

The Ariegeois is not as well known as the Epagneuls Bretons, the Braques Français, the Beagle-Harrier and the Brie Shepherd. And yet, the Ariegeois excels in hunting activities as well as in other breeds. It is a cheerful and sociable dog, in love with the great spaces.

Characteristics of the Ariegeois

The Ariegeois has an easily recognizable physique. This medium-sized hound attracts attention with its elegance and lightness. Its height varies from 50 to 58 cm and its weight, from 28 to 30 kg. It is distinguished by its elongated and fine head with a slightly domed skull, a black nose and a slightly marked stop that gives it its graceful appearance. It also has large, long, drooping, flexible and fine ears. However, their length should not exceed the base of the nose. And what to say about his eyes of such a softness and which also give him an expression of intelligence. They are well opened and of rather dark brown color. The Ariegeois stands out by its short, thin tail, attached to the end of the body. It reminds of a saber. The coat is short and fine. The coat is white with black markings and can also be spotted. The eyes are encircled with black. The presence of tan color on the head and cheeks is tolerated by the standard.

History of the Ariegeois breed

The Ariegeois comes from the Ariege, located in the Languedoc-Roussillon region. The paternity is attributed to the Count Elie de Vézins who wished to obtain the best of the hunting dogs. He then made a hybridization between a Grand Bleu saintongeois or a Grand Bleu de Gascogne with hounds and a Briquet du pays. The result: the Ariegeois obtained shone in the hunting of hares. For a long time, he excelled in this role and also became known for his ability to hunt wild boar. He is even considered to be a hunter's best friend. On the other hand, he is little known outside the borders of the country. The South of France remains its favorite territory.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Ariegeois

The Ariegeois is above all a hunting dog. He will not be at ease if he lives in a small apartment and will prefer to live in the countryside to roam the great outdoors. As a companion dog, he is appreciated for his kindness towards children, his affection and his great intelligence. The fact that it is smart makes easy its education which should not be done too firmly because it is a sensitive animal. It is also a great shy where the interest to begin as soon as possible its socialization.

Food and main health problems of the Ariegeois

Note that the rations will not be the same if the Ariegeois is involved in hunting activities: the food must be doubled in this case. With a nutritious and balanced diet, this dog can live between 10 and 13 years. It is spared from hereditary diseases. On the other hand, it is necessary to pay attention to the otitis which can affect it because of its large drooping ears.

Is the bad reputation of dogs really justified?

 Any dog, whatever its breed and/or size, can be mean if it is badly trained or mistreated. However, molosses are often viewed with suspicion, being impressive by their size, whereas a small dog does not generally inspire any distrust. However, they can be ferocious on many occasions. The question remains: as terrifying as they may be because of their physical appearance, are molossoids as dangerous as we think? They fall under the category of "dangerous dogs" and are covered by a law that may seem discriminatory. What about their character and do they represent a real danger?

What is a molossoid?

It is Jean-Pierre Mégnin (1828-1905) - French entomologist and veterinarian, precursor of cynology - who set up the first classification of dog breeds. Thus, according to some of their peculiarities, the dogs could be of type :
  • Molossoid (a category more commonly known as molosses),
  • Graioid (or greyhound type),
  • Lupoid (evoking the characteristics of the wolf),
  • Braccoid (or pointing dog type).
However, a confusion has arisen in the minds of the uninitiated, so that today large and strong dogs are mistakenly called molosses, without any distinction being made between their breeds. They are considered ferocious, but this bad reputation is completely unfounded. Statistics prove it: out of 100 dog bites, less than 8 are attributable to a molosser.

Classification of "dangerous dog" breeds: what are the 1st and 2nd categories?

The 1st category includes dogs without pedigree presenting morphological similarities with the Boerbull or Mastiff, the Tosa, the Pit-bull and the Am' staff (American Staffordshire Terrier). We can also add the undocumented dogs of the Dogue de Bordeaux type. All these canines are considered as attack dogs.

In order for a dog to enter the 2nd category, its breeder must register it in the LOF. This 2nd category includes the following purebred dogs (with pedigree):
  • Rottweiler as well as dogs that are close to it from the point of view of their morphology provided that they are registered in the French Book of Origins (LOF).
  • Tosa inu,
  • Rottweiler with or without papers,
The dogs of this category are said to be guard or defense dogs. Regarding the Staffordshire Bull Terrier called staffie, it was first classified by mistake among the "dangerous dogs" because it had been confused with a cousin of the Am' staff, namely the Staffordshire Terrier also called American Staffordshire Terrier. The staffie is now excluded from the 2nd category.

Owners of molosses: the obligations

The owners of these dogs that the law considers as dangerous are often saddened by the reputation of their companions. They know that they are less dangerous than they appear and are fully aware that many accidents are due to dogs that do not fall into categories 1 and 2. However, on a daily basis, they are confronted with excessive reactions from people who do not know the character of these animals. Both owners and dogs pay dearly for prejudices.

Anyway, owning a 1st or 2nd category dog implies to respect the law on "dangerous dogs" in force since 1999. Possession permits, mandatory sterilization, forbidden access to certain public places, wearing a muzzle are among the many obligations that are imposed according to the category to which the dog belongs. The owners of these pets are also obliged to take out a specific civil liability insurance.

A molosser is not born mean

Because of its impressive morphology and its powerful jaw, the dog - whatever its breed - is generally considered as a muggle by the common people whether or not it is in one of the categories seen previously. In common parlance, this can refer to a Tosa inu, a St. Bernard, a Newfoundland, a Spanish Mastiff, a Great Dane, a Majorcan Mastiff or a Leonberger.

A big dog, even the most impressive one, is nevertheless able to give a lot of affection to the members of its host family and even to strangers. All dogs are friendly by nature and remain so if they are lucky enough to have a good owner, that is to say if they are well cared for and taken in hand from a young age in order to be perfectly educated. They must be able to enjoy good living conditions with a respectful and loving master.

A dog is not born bad. He is simply likely to become one if his owner fails in his duty. And this is just as true for a Yorkie that weighs at most 4 kg as an adult, far from having an impressive musculature, but that can be extremely snappy and bite at every turn!

It is therefore the lack of socialization that is dangerous and not the dog. Aggression is not innate in dogs, but it can be born in these pets if they have been mistreated, trained to attack for no reason, or if they have not been provided with a suitable environment. Dogs need to be able to release tension and stress and therefore need to exercise sufficiently. Welcoming a dog into your home means facing up to your responsibilities. But this is what happens when you want to have a pet of any kind.

The Shikoku, a dog with an athletic and powerful look

The Shikoku is a primitive Japanese dog with an athletic and powerful appearance. Originally used for hunting big game, it has become a dynamic and alert companion dog. This breed is known for its great loyalty to its masters.

Characteristics of the Shikoku

A Spitz-type dog, the Shikoku is blessed with a harmoniously proportioned body with well-defined limbs, a powerful bone structure and a medium conformation. At the back, the tail curls over the back and gives the animal presence. With a stoic and graceful air, the dog is recognizable by its wedge-shaped head with a broad forehead, a black nose and a clear stop. The long pointed muzzle is similar to that of a fox and gives it a false air of Shiba Inu. The Shikoku has eyes well spaced between them, triangular in shape and relatively small in size. The ears are also triangular, erect, small and pointing a little forward. The Shikoku has a rough, short and hard coat. The sesame coat (equal combination of black and white) can also go in the shades of black sesame or red sesame. Black and tan or cream coats are not allowed.

History of the Shikoku breed

The Shikoku comes to us straight from Japan, more particularly from the mountainous region of Kochi. The history of this breed is not well known but one thing is sure: it has preserved its original characteristics over the centuries. As it comes from a very difficult to reach place, it has not been hybridized by man. Japan will even declare it "national monument" in 1937. At the beginning, this dog was very appreciated for its ability to hunt wild boar. Today, it is more appreciated for its qualities of pet although it is a rather confidential race, little present in France.

Living conditions and behavior of the Shikoku

The Shikoku has an important endurance and a lot of energy. Having developed in remote areas, it has gained in agility and has developed boldness and courage. At the same time, it is very affectionate and intelligent. In the home, this dog will be unmatched in its devotion to its owners. He is cheerful and will never balk at the idea of a game of fetch with the children. However, vigilance is necessary because he can lack patience. It can sometimes appear as a bit stubborn and dominant, hence the importance of providing a firm education and socializing him early so that his hunting instinct does not take over. This dog has difficulty living in the company of other animals, especially its own congeners, and even less so with felines.

Diet and main health problems of the Shikoku

The purity of the breed spares it from the various usual canine pathologies. It is a robust dog able to live up to 12 years. Its diet does not need to be specific as long as it gets all the nutrients necessary for its good development and health.

The Komondor, dog with a dishevelled aspect

Considered as a real legend in Central Europe because of its strong guarding instinct, the Komondor does not have only followers especially in France. Its disheveled appearance makes some detractors especially because of the difficulty to maintain its coat. The only thing to remember about this breed is that it shines by its sincerity and its valiant heart.

Characteristics of the Komondor

There are no two like it. The Komondor's style is somewhat original, to say the least. It is recognizable between thousand thanks to its particularly dense ivory white topcoat which looks like felted braided ropes. The coat can be up to 27cm long, which is to say that it is quite exceptional. The dog has a rather imposing size and is between 65 and 80cm high at the withers and weighs between 40 and 60kg. The body is square-shaped and has a proud and dignified appearance. Its head remains relatively massive, but without detracting from the rest of the body. The Komondor displays a black nose and a stop accentuated. Its U or V shaped ears are placed halfway up and are hanging. At the level of the eyes, the dog has them of dark brown color.

History of the Komondor breed

So far, it is difficult to establish the exact origins of the Komondor. What is certain is that it is an ancient breed that appeared in the 9th century in Hungary and was introduced from Asia. The Komondor shines by its strong capacities in the guard of the herds. It is able to hide in the middle of the livestock to appear from nowhere and attack predators. It has contributed to the fight against wolves, a legend that attests to the strength and robustness of this breed. In Hungary, it is considered a national heritage, but in the rest of the world, it is still little known. And it is not for lack of trying to gain popularity, since it participated in many dog shows where it aroused admiration by its atypical physique.

Necessary living conditions and behavior of the Komondor

Let there be no mistake, even if it is not a fan of cuddles and seems to lack affection, the Komondor is still very attached to his masters. The latter can always count on its valour and its instinct of protection to go up the guard in the house. He excels in this field. At night, he will make rounds to make sure that everything goes well in his home. He is very protective of the children and will always keep an eye on them. The little ones will be able to play with him in spite of his calm and reserved character. Another thing: it is neither a city dog, nor an apartment animal. Life in the open air is all he needs to be happy.

Food and main health problems of the Komondor

The Komondor is not spared by some diseases typical of large dogs as hip dysplasia. A monitoring of eye diseases (entropion) and dermatological (dermatitis, sebaceous cysts) is also required. As far as diet is concerned, nothing very specific is declared by the specialists. In any case, it is not a big gourmet. An industrial or domestic food will be able to suit him, provided that the rations and the rates of nutrients essential to his development are well respected.

What are the natural tranquilizers you can give to your dog?

A hyperactive, anxious or stressed dog can find a real well-being thanks to natural sedatives. If his condition is not due to a serious pathology, these solutions are better than a chemical drug whose side effects are not to be neglected. Let's take a look at the natural remedies that can calm a dog.

A natural solution for hyperactive dogs

Owning a hyperactive dog is not easy and the difficulties of adaptation for the owner are manifested on a daily basis. This developmental disorder causes behavioral problems in dogs that were not raised by their mothers or that were raised in a non-stimulating environment. The consequences of hyperactivity can be disastrous. The animal whose emotional state is unstable must be taken care of by a canine behaviorist educator.

In addition to this support, the hyperactive dog can take natural calming agents specifically developed for agitated or very nervous animals. Some canine food supplements give good results. We recommend that owners give priority to preparations based on trace elements that also contain plant extracts with calming properties such as valerian, passionflower or eschscholtzia.

Without side effects, these natural calming agents for hyperactive dogs help to improve the animal's mental balance and bring it real well-being. They are easy to take as you only need to add the dose recommended by the manufacturer to the dog's food portion. Generally marketed in boxes of 50 capsules, these food supplements should be distributed at a rate of one capsule per 10 kg of weight. For example, for a 30 kg dog, each dose corresponds to 3 capsules.

A molecule against stress in dogs

Stress is quite common in dogs. And even if the owner is affectionate and tries to soothe his animal by talking to it nicely or playing with it, none of these good intentions are enough to de-stress it. In this case, one can resort to a natural anti-stress agent such as solutions made from alpha-casozepine. It is a molecule without side effects. Its effectiveness has been approved by owners of stressed or anxious dogs whose behavior visibly improves after taking this molecule regularly.

It is found in particular in Zylkene capsules sold in pharmacies that dedicate one of their sections to animal health. Although it is a natural calming agent, it is essential to strictly respect the dosage indicated by the manufacturer according to the animal's weight. An overdose is strongly discouraged, and the duration of treatment must be limited.

Natural anti-inflammatory to soothe pain in dogs

Older dogs in particular can suffer from inflammatory pain due to joint problems for example. To calm them, the veterinarian can prescribe a medication. But there are also natural anti-inflammatories that can calm this discomfort.

Some painkillers for dogs are very effective, and they have the advantage of not causing side effects or addiction. Based on medicinal plants, they reassure owners who do not wish to burden their little companion's body with chemicals that could prove toxic in the long term.

Among the tranquilizers adapted to dogs suffering from inflammatory pain, we find, for example, valerian, St. John's wort, wheatgrass, propolis or even harpagophytum, which is nicknamed devil's claw. After a few weeks of natural painkillers, the dog will feel better and will start to move much more easily.

Whatever the natural solution chosen, the owner of a stressed or suffering dog should always seek professional advice to ensure that his little companion is suitable for this type of painkiller.