If your Dog’s Gained Weight, Does that Mean You’ve Gained Weight?

Fairly recently we took Cody and Sierra to the Veterinarian to get a checkup, some shots, and they each got their nails clipped.  (Sierra wasn't happy about that!)

As most people know everytime you go to the Vet they weigh your dog.  Well to our surprise each of our Singing Dogs has gained roughly 2 pounds since the last Vet visit.  While this doesn't sound like a lot for humans, for medium sized dogs this is a fairly large weight gain.  While I mulled over their weight gain I thought, “If they've gained weight, does that mean I've gained weight?”

Since hearing your dog's gained weight is almost an insult that you've gained weight, I started questioning the scale at the Vet.  Could it be they don't calibrate it or it has not been calibrated properly?  Maybe it's just old?  What if it wasn't zeroed?  The scale must be broken! 🙂

While I think it's the weight scale and not all those extra treats we give the dogs, the reality started to set in a little bit.  Honestly we probably don't spend enough time playing and exercising with our dogs.  The food we buy is generally healthy but we could be doing a better job for the dogs and ourselves.

So if your dog's gained weight, does that make you feel like you've gained weight?  What are going to do to change it?

Do Dog Seatbelts Really Protect your Dog?

During BlogPaws 2013 I learned a lot about the dog and pet blogging industry.  Something about Dog SeatBelts quite frankly surprised and shocked me though.  Do Dog Seatbelts Really Protect your Dog?  The answer, No they will not protect your dog nearly as well as you think.

The Center for Pet Safety has done testing with various dog seatbelts, harnesses, and restraints.  Their findings concluded that a lot of dog seatbelts don't provide adequate protection in the event of an car accident.

From the Center for Pet Safety‘s brochure they state;

many of the pet safety restraints currently on the market do not provide acceptable levels of protection to the animal and/or humans in a crash situation.

One thing to consider is that if a dog seatbelt or harness fails in your car it can hurt you and other passengers in the vehicle.  Other things to consider ;

In the US there are no performance standards or test protocols for many classes of pet product.  Manufactures are not required to test products before going to market!

Some manufactures claim to test their products, but with the absence of independently verified test standards, consumers are wise to cast a wary eye on these unsubstantiated claims.

This is a video of crash test conducted and you can view crash tests videos that the Center for Pet Safety here.

All the tests conducted were specially designed and mainly for larger dogs.  (I assume this is because larger dogs pose a greater risk in accidents.)  No animals were used in the testing and the crash tests conformed to the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) specifications.

It should be noted that the Center for Pet Safety (CPS) is not affiliated with the pet product industry and does not endorse products.   The CPS also does not want to reveal what products they used in their testings since they believe the restraingts and seatbelts, while not providing enough protection, are better than if you let your pet roam freely in the car.

While the findings of the CPS are a bit concerning it is good they are raising awareness.  We personally use dog seatbelts with Cody and Sierra not only for their safety but ours too.  We have gotten both of our dogs are used to wearing dog seatbelts but we have noticed the restraints don't always seem to work adequately.  Cody manages to unlatch his seatbelt and make himself more comfortable.

Seems the companies that sell dog seatbelts and harnesses need to do mandate better testing on themselves.  Probably not something they will do easily but they will if enough pet owners let them know they need to change.  Kurgo, the dog seatbelts we have, will be getting a letter from us.

I will admit when we had our old dog, Roger, we let him roam freely in the car.  We knew this was dangerous but he liked the freedom and in those days I don't even think they sold dog seatbelts or restraint systems.  At least were we not aware of it.  These restraint systems seem rather new.

I'm curios to know if you use dog seatbelts or harnesses does that make you feel more safe?  What are your thoughts about the CPS findings?

Cody’s Cracked Dog Nail

Yesterday we went to the vet's office because Cody somehow managed to crack one of his nails on his right paw.  I first noticed when he was holding up his paw but luckily the it was not that bad.  Of course he was licking his paw a lot since it was clearly uncomfortable.  Take a look at the picture below.

cracked dog nail

Like any smart and responsible dog owner after I Googled all sorts using “Dogs” and “Cracked Nails” “Cracked claws” etc.  I see a lot of different information out there about cracked dog nails and claws but I haven't seen anything definitive about whether it is ok for a dog owner to handle this sort of issue on their own or have a veterinarian and vet tech take care of it.

The last time Cody cracked his nail it was splintered in several places.  It was fairly serious and he had to have bandage on his paw for awhile.  That time it seemed like it was better to have a vet take care of it instead of us.  I wonder though if the visit this time was really necessary.

What the veterinarian basically did was just cut above the crack.  There was minimal bleeding since it went into the Quick, as it is know.  The vet  applied some powder that helped stop the bleeding.  Cody was not a happy camper when she did it and had to have a vet tech help clip the cracked nail and Cody's other nails while we were there.  Since we were already at the vet's office why not just have them do it, right?  Cody also got a few shots that he was a bit overdue for and the vet drew some blood so so they could test for heartworm.

Sierra also got her nails cut too.  It was funny because Cody went first and then Sierra hopped over to the vet as if to say “My turn!” (Sierra is a bit jealous if another dog is getting more attention.)  Little did she know that she was going to get her nails clipped which she found out was not as fun as it looked.

If you have a decent set of dog nail clippers and basic First Aid supplies in your house, it seems easy to take care of a cracked dog nail in my opinion.  All the vet did was cut Cody's nail and use some power to stop the minimal amount of bleeding.  Something I felt we could have taken care of on our own.

What do you think? Is a cracked dog nail something a vet should take care of or is this the type of thing dog owners can handle i?  I am interested to hear opinions, comments, and advice.

Maybe this will inspire us to write a song about cracked dog nails and broken dog nails.  Cody would be good at singing that song! 🙂

Sierra’s Auld Lang Syne Video on Good Morning America!

Sierra's Auld Lang Syne Video on Good Morning America!

Another BIG appearance I haven't put up on Singing Dogs is that Sierra was on Good Morning America for the New Year's Show! A producer contacted me and said that they “Loved” the video of Sierra singing to ‘Auld Lang Syne' lying down and they wanted to show it on Good Morning America for the Play of the Day segment.

For those that might have missed it (we did too by the way) you can watch the video here.  I included the short promo they did before the commercial break.

Pretty cool, right?  I mean the guy call Sierra a “He” but at least she was the best part of the Play of the Day segment.  (That is my biased opinion.)  He did say “English Shepherd” which was accurate.

It took me awhile to get the video on Youtube.  Someone sent me a VHS of the show, then I transferred that onto a DVD with my Toshiba DVD Recorder, put the file on my laptop, then I finally got it edited correctly and uploaded it to the SingingDogsRock channel.  It was sort of annoying because it was so time consuming.  At least the video is up so people can see it now.

Please leave a comment below and let us know what you think of Sierra's Good Morning America appearance.  Got an opinion about Cody and Sierra's other media and press appearances?  Leave a comment too!

Follow the Singing Dogs on our Facebook Page and Twitter feed to keep updated with new videos and posts to the blog. 

Sierra featured on MSN Now

sierra on msn now

Sierra featured on MSN Now

Including Sierra being featured on Babble and the Huffington Post she was also featured on MSN Now back on December 31st, 2012.  It was a pretty funny and cool article:

Hoping for a rocking New Year's Eve party? Might want to cross Sierra the singing dog off your guest list. Here she is, moaning along to “Auld Lang Syne,” with her buddy Cody chiming in from the sidelines. The musical canines belong to sax player Adam Yamada-Hanff and have appeared on Anderson Cooper's show. They're also the stars of Yamada-Hanff's SingingDogs.net website and have their own Singing DogsRock channel on YouTube. But while this Baltimore-based English shepherd may be a musical maestro, this time she just can't be bothered to sit up straight to ring in 2013. Here's hoping this isn't yet another sign of an impending apocalypse.

What do you think of all of our media coverage?  Leave a comment below and let us know.

Hopefully in 2013 we will have even more press and media appearances.

Follow the Singing Dogs on our Facebook Page and Twitter feed to keep updating with new videos and posts.

Pet Blogger Challenge

Pet Blogger Challenge Jan. 10

Pet Blogger Challenge

I noticed this Pet Blogger Challenge being put on by GoPetFriendly.com and thought I would answer the questions just for kicks even though we are one day late.  Hopefully this will encourage us to kick start SingingDogs.net into an even more awesome dog blog with better content for 2013.

1. When did you begin your blog?

I started Singing Dogs on May 21st, 2012 with this post!

2. What was your original purpose for starting a blog?

To showcase and keep people and fans updated with Cody and Sierra also known as the Singing Dogs.  As well as showcase their talents by posting videos.  It was also so it would be easier for media to find and contact us.

3. Is your current purpose the same?

Generally yes, it has served it's purpose well.  We were contacted by Good Morning America via this blog to use one of Sierra's videos for New Year's.  Many other website and blogs have picked up our videos now.

If so, how do you feel you’ve met your goals?

I think we have meet our goals pretty well.  I would like more traffic ( like all bloggers) but we are doing pretty well.  We were mentioned on the MSN, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed and a ton of other websites and I feel 2013 will only bring more great things for Singing Dogs.

4. How often do you post?

Not often enough!  Sparringly once a week maybe but I will work on improving that in the coming months.  More content but shorter posts probably.

5. Do you blog on a schedule or as the spirit moves you?

More as the spirit moves me.  I feel that's better than forcing yourself to put out content you don't like or want to write.  The blog is mainly for keeping people updated with Cody and Sierra.  I will move into doing product reviews and showcase adoptable dogs.

6. How much time do you spend writing your blog per week? How much time visiting other blogs? 

I read a lot of other blogs but they are mainly not pet related.  Mostly for internet and web marketing and researching new SEO techniques.  I do keep up with other pet bloggers via Twitter though.

7. How do you measure the success of a post and of your blog in general (comments, shares, traffic)?

Even if a post hasn't gotten a lot of shares but is bringing in good targeted traffic, I consider it a success.  I think not ever post has to be SEO friendly and get lots of traffic.  Many bloggers get too caught in making ever post great, when that just can't happen all the time.

The pet and dog niche is specific.  The visitors here like to comment and share and I feel if someone has commented I have done a good job.  So please comment! 🙂

8. If you could ask the pet blogging community for help with one issue you’re having with your blog, what would it be?

Probably to share Cody and Sierra's videos more!  We want to go viral around the world! 🙂

9. What goals do you have for your blog in 2013?

I have a lot of goals for this blog and my other websites.  I want to learn to graphic design and more coding to make this blog look better and do some funky stuff.

I also hope that I can turn Cody and Sierra into worldwide internet sensations and in the process raise awareness about animal cruelty.  I think there is way to use our videos to raise money for animal shelters and drive adoptions, but haven't quite figured that out yet.  Singing Dogs seems to make everyone happy.

Follow the Singing Dogs on our Facebook Page and Twitter feed to keep updating with new videos and posts.