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  1. Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?

    fabulous pet dog beds made in uk grass dog piccopy

    One of the most common questions that many pet parents ask me is, "why do dogs eat grass?" In the video above, I shed some light on the motives behind this popular doggy behavior. I urge you to read this article as well to know the reasons why dogs are prone to this unusual habit.

    luxury fabulous dog pet beds grass doggies

    Grass-Eating Is a Common Occurrence in Dogs

    Many dog owners usually feel alarmed whenever they see their beloved Fido chewing on their lawn. But the truth is that grass-eating, a behavior technically known as "pica," or eating things that are not characterized as food, is quite common among dogs. Even wild dogs have been found to do this.

    In puppies and younger dogs, grass eating may be a sign of boredom or playful behavior. However, there are certain health-related reasons why some pets are prone to this – but they do it mainly to purge their system.

    •Dogs eat grass when they suffer from gastrointestinal upset. Most of you are well aware that dogs will, on occasion, eat large amounts of grass in an attempt to make themselves throw up. When they exhibit this behavior, it tends to be almost frantic.

    They'll whimper and cry to be let out, then they'll run outside and start eating any grass they can find; they're not selective.

    After they consume a large amount of grass, they'll often times lick their lips because they're nauseous, and then of course, they'll vomit. It's completely normal for your dog to vomit occasionally (like people do when they are ill), meaning one or two times a year.

    Most often it's nothing to worry about and, surprising as this may sound, your dog knows what's best in terms of intentionally voiding their system of something that could be toxic, or making them unwell.

    fabulous dog beds handmade doggie grass

    •It could be a way of easing nausea, gas or bloating. Again, these conditions are related to gastrointestinal upset.

    •They may be suffering from intestinal worms. A study1 conducted in wild chimpanzees suggested that they consumed plant material to increase intestinal motility and help them eliminate intestinal parasites – the same may be said for canines.

    •Dogs may eat grass to fulfill a nutritional requirement. One study tells the story of a miniature poodle that ate grass and then vomited every day, for seven years. After placing the dog on a high-fiber diet, the dog stopped eating grass entirely.2

    •It is a trait that they inherited from their ancestors. Some people believe that because wild dogs ingested prey that had plant matter in their bowels, present-day canines seek it as well.3

    •They enjoy it! Some dogs consider it a fun and rewarding behavior, and may eat grass simply to pass time (more on this later).

     

    luxury handmade fabulous dog beds grass pooch

    What to Do if Your Dog Eats Grass Often

    As I said earlier, many dogs will eat grass to make themselves vomit, but if your dog is doing this on a frequent basis it's a sign that her system may be off kilter.

    In this case, you absolutely need to reevaluate their diet, as frequent gastrointestinal upset is a sign that something is wrong with the food that you're feeding.

    It may be a great quality food, one your dog has been eating for years with no trouble. But if your dog begins vomiting up grass and food several times a week or even weekly, I can tell you that this is not normal.

    I would recommend switching brands of food, switching flavors and switching protein sources. Above all, if you're capable of going from an entirely dead diet (kibble or canned) to an entirely living diet (raw), that would be wonderful!

    You may want to seek the help of a holistic veterinarian who can help you to switch your dog to a new diet. Most importantly, if your dog has been eating the same diet for most of his life, you will need to make the transition gradually.

    The other items that you should consider adding to your dog's food are probiotics and digestive enzymes. Probiotics help reseed and fortify the beneficial bacteria in your dog's gut, while the digestive enzymes provide what the entrails or the guts of their prey species would have.

    These enzymes provide a rich source of amylase, lipase and protease, which can help your pets process food much more successfully.

    So, that's one scenario -- the obsessive consumption of a large amount of grass in order to produce an episode of purging or vomiting. The next reason is entirely different …

    Dogs May Feed on Grass Simply Because They Want To

    Contrast the first scenario -- your dog rushing out and eating any and all grass in sight -- with this second scenario: you let your dog out the back door. It looks like he's having a great time running around when all of a sudden you see him on a mission. He is sniffing and specifically seeking out tall, broad grasses -- the tall grasses that typically grow along a fence line or up from sidewalk cracks.

    Your dog is very selectively picking out certain grasses. He identifies them and uses his front teeth to nibble and eat them. He's not frantic, he is doing it almost with intention and you see him select a few grasses and go about his way.

    That's an entirely different scenario and that's scenario number two, which means your dog is eating grass because he wants to.

    Eating Grass Is a Normal Dog Behavior

    Dogs know what they need to consume. And in fact, biologists have told us that all canids -- dogs and wild dogs (wolves, coyotes, dingoes, etc.) -- consume grass and it's a completely normal behavior.

    So it's important to recognize that you don't have to prevent your dogs from eating grass unless you have treated grass or your grass has pesticides, herbicides, and chemicals on it.

    It's obviously important that you don't allow your dogs to consume toxins when they're consuming those grasses, but if the grass is free from contaminants, you can let your dog eat away.

    Grass Has Nutrients Your Dog May Need

    The grasses your dog is seeking out probably contains some nutritional value that your dog is seeking. We know that grass contains an abundant source of fiber or roughage, for instance, and we know that since grass is a living green food it contains phytonutrients and is high in potassium and also chlorophyll. Grasses are also a pretty good source of digestive enzymes.

    So your dog could be seeking out selective grasses to make up for one of these nutritional components that they're currently not getting in their diet.

    Some dogs may also eat grass because they are under-fed, don't have access to adequate food or are just plain bored. But, in the vast majority of cases, even if your dog is well fed and well cared for, he will still selectively pick out certain grasses just for their nutritional health benefits.

     

  2. Why Do Dogs Eat Grass?

    fabulous pet dog beds made in uk grass dog piccopy

    One of the most common questions that many pet parents ask me is, "why do dogs eat grass?" In the video above, I shed some light on the motives behind this popular doggy behavior. I urge you to read this article as well to know the reasons why dogs are prone to this unusual habit.

    luxury fabulous dog pet beds grass doggies

    Grass-Eating Is a Common Occurrence in Dogs

    Many dog owners usually feel alarmed whenever they see their beloved Fido chewing on their lawn. But the truth is that grass-eating, a behavior technically known as "pica," or eating things that are not characterized as food, is quite common among dogs. Even wild dogs have been found to do this.

    In puppies and younger dogs, grass eating may be a sign of boredom or playful behavior. However, there are certain health-related reasons why some pets are prone to this – but they do it mainly to purge their system.

    •Dogs eat grass when they suffer from gastrointestinal upset. Most of you are well aware that dogs will, on occasion, eat large amounts of grass in an attempt to make themselves throw up. When they exhibit this behavior, it tends to be almost frantic.

    They'll whimper and cry to be let out, then they'll run outside and start eating any grass they can find; they're not selective.

    After they consume a large amount of grass, they'll often times lick their lips because they're nauseous, and then of course, they'll vomit. It's completely normal for your dog to vomit occasionally (like people do when they are ill), meaning one or two times a year.

    Most often it's nothing to worry about and, surprising as this may sound, your dog knows what's best in terms of intentionally voiding their system of something that could be toxic, or making them unwell.

    fabulous dog beds handmade doggie grass

    •It could be a way of easing nausea, gas or bloating. Again, these conditions are related to gastrointestinal upset.

    •They may be suffering from intestinal worms. A study1 conducted in wild chimpanzees suggested that they consumed plant material to increase intestinal motility and help them eliminate intestinal parasites – the same may be said for canines.

    •Dogs may eat grass to fulfill a nutritional requirement. One study tells the story of a miniature poodle that ate grass and then vomited every day, for seven years. After placing the dog on a high-fiber diet, the dog stopped eating grass entirely.2

    •It is a trait that they inherited from their ancestors. Some people believe that because wild dogs ingested prey that had plant matter in their bowels, present-day canines seek it as well.3

    •They enjoy it! Some dogs consider it a fun and rewarding behavior, and may eat grass simply to pass time (more on this later).

     

    luxury handmade fabulous dog beds grass pooch

    What to Do if Your Dog Eats Grass Often

    As I said earlier, many dogs will eat grass to make themselves vomit, but if your dog is doing this on a frequent basis it's a sign that her system may be off kilter.

    In this case, you absolutely need to reevaluate their diet, as frequent gastrointestinal upset is a sign that something is wrong with the food that you're feeding.

    It may be a great quality food, one your dog has been eating for years with no trouble. But if your dog begins vomiting up grass and food several times a week or even weekly, I can tell you that this is not normal.

    I would recommend switching brands of food, switching flavors and switching protein sources. Above all, if you're capable of going from an entirely dead diet (kibble or canned) to an entirely living diet (raw), that would be wonderful!

    You may want to seek the help of a holistic veterinarian who can help you to switch your dog to a new diet. Most importantly, if your dog has been eating the same diet for most of his life, you will need to make the transition gradually.

    The other items that you should consider adding to your dog's food are probiotics and digestive enzymes. Probiotics help reseed and fortify the beneficial bacteria in your dog's gut, while the digestive enzymes provide what the entrails or the guts of their prey species would have.

    These enzymes provide a rich source of amylase, lipase and protease, which can help your pets process food much more successfully.

    So, that's one scenario -- the obsessive consumption of a large amount of grass in order to produce an episode of purging or vomiting. The next reason is entirely different …

    Dogs May Feed on Grass Simply Because They Want To

    Contrast the first scenario -- your dog rushing out and eating any and all grass in sight -- with this second scenario: you let your dog out the back door. It looks like he's having a great time running around when all of a sudden you see him on a mission. He is sniffing and specifically seeking out tall, broad grasses -- the tall grasses that typically grow along a fence line or up from sidewalk cracks.

    Your dog is very selectively picking out certain grasses. He identifies them and uses his front teeth to nibble and eat them. He's not frantic, he is doing it almost with intention and you see him select a few grasses and go about his way.

    That's an entirely different scenario and that's scenario number two, which means your dog is eating grass because he wants to.

    Eating Grass Is a Normal Dog Behavior

    Dogs know what they need to consume. And in fact, biologists have told us that all canids -- dogs and wild dogs (wolves, coyotes, dingoes, etc.) -- consume grass and it's a completely normal behavior.

    So it's important to recognize that you don't have to prevent your dogs from eating grass unless you have treated grass or your grass has pesticides, herbicides, and chemicals on it.

    It's obviously important that you don't allow your dogs to consume toxins when they're consuming those grasses, but if the grass is free from contaminants, you can let your dog eat away.

    Grass Has Nutrients Your Dog May Need

    The grasses your dog is seeking out probably contains some nutritional value that your dog is seeking. We know that grass contains an abundant source of fiber or roughage, for instance, and we know that since grass is a living green food it contains phytonutrients and is high in potassium and also chlorophyll. Grasses are also a pretty good source of digestive enzymes.

    So your dog could be seeking out selective grasses to make up for one of these nutritional components that they're currently not getting in their diet.

    Some dogs may also eat grass because they are under-fed, don't have access to adequate food or are just plain bored. But, in the vast majority of cases, even if your dog is well fed and well cared for, he will still selectively pick out certain grasses just for their nutritional health benefits.

     

  3. Do Dogs Dream?

    fabulous luxury dog beds dogy nap

    Let’s look at this scientifically: we know that human beings have dreams because research has shown that the electrical impulses in the brain can become active during sleep.

    Researchers have used similar techniques to monitor our canine companions, in order to determine whether those cute night time shuffles are evidence of dreams, or something different. Using an electroencephalogram to test for brain wave activity during sleep in dogs, scientists discovered that we have even more in common with our furry friends than we thought! It seems very likely that dogs do dream, just as we do.

    fabulous handmade dog beds doggy nap

    Dog sleep patterns and dreams

    You might already know that human beings have different stages of sleep during the night, and that dreaming is most likely to occur at a specific point in the sleep cycle. Incredibly, this seems to be true for dogs as well!

    Your pet will enter a stage of sleep known as ‘REM’, which stands for rapid eye movement. At this point, your dog’s breathing will begin to sound more irregular and their eyes will start to move around more rapidly. You may notice their eyelids flickering. It is during this stage of sleep that dog dreams are most likely to happen.

    Signs your dog is dreaming

    If you’ve already noticed that your dog is in a deep stage of sleep, or REM, then it’s more likely that will have a dream. This type of sleep doesn’t happen very quickly, so it’s less likely to occur during a quick power nap in the afternoon than a longer sleep. During REM, your dog’s breathing will become irregular and they will experience rapid eye movement.

    Other signs of dog dreams? Just like humans, dogs seem to react subconsciously to dream images during their sleep. You might hear a growl, whimper, whine or purr. They may make movements with their legs, as though running. You could notice the occasional twitch or shudder. Dogs have even been known to bark in their sleep—sometimes even waking themselves up!

    fabulous handmade dog beds pooch

    What do dogs dream about?

    The most intriguing question of all! The scientific research all points to the fact that our dogs have dreams just like we do: but how can we tell what it is that they’re dreaming about?

    Unfortunately, until the day we’re able to see inside their heads, or learn how to interpret barks into a human language, we’ll never truly know! However, it is likely that dogs dream in a similar way to humans: reliving their daily experiences and enacting their usual activities. So if your dog normally barks at cats, and you notice them bark during their sleep, they may well be dreaming of the cat next door!

    What we do know is that small dogs tend to dream more frequently than larger dogs within their sleep pattern. Lynn Buzhardt DVM notes that research by psychology professor Stanley Coren indicates that the length and frequency of dreams may be linked to the dog’s size. For example, a Toy Poodle might display the signs of dreaming up to once every ten minutes, whereas a dog the size of a Golden Retriever may only dream once every 90 minutes.

    How do you know if your dog is having a bad dream?

    The signs that your dog is having a bad dream are just like the signs that your dog is anxious, distressed, or annoyed when they are awake. If your dog is simply paddling their legs and making noises of excitement—they’re probably having a good dream, most likely about dinner! But if your dog is whining, crying or growling, then they may be having a bad dream, in which they feel threatened or anxious.

    fabulous dog pet dods sleepy pooch

    Is it ok to wake a dreaming dog?

    If you believe your dog is having a bad dream, it’s best not to disturb them—even though it may be tempting to wake them up and comfort them. It could take your pet a moment to realise that they are no longer asleep, and you don’t want to risk them lashing out as though still in the dream. Although it can feel distressing to watch your dog experience a bad dream, try to remember—it is just a dream!

  4. Why Do Dogs Wag Their Tails?

    fabulous dog beds waggy tail

     

    It's commonly believed that dogs wag their tails to convey that they are happy and friendly, but this isn't exactly true.

    Dogs do use their tails to communicate, though a wagging tail doesn’t always mean, "Come pet me!"

    Dogs have a kind of language that's based on the position and motion of their tails. The position of a dog's tail reveals its emotional state.

    It's commonly believed that dogs wag their tails to convey that they are happy and friendly, but this isn't exactly true.

    Dogs do use their tails to communicate, though a wagging tail doesn’t always mean, "Come pet me!"

    Dogs have a kind of language that's based on the position and motion of their tails. The position of a dog's tail reveals its emotional state.

    fabulous handmade dog beds waggy tail

    When a dog is relaxed, its tail will be in its "natural" position, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

    This natural position differs between breeds. The tails of most dogs, for example, hang down near their hocks, or heels. But pugs have tails that curl upward, and greyhounds have tails that rest slightly between their legs.

    If a dog is nervous or submissive, it'll hold its tail lower than its natural position, and will tuck its tail under its body if it's scared. On the opposite end of the spectrum, a tail held higher than normal may indicate the dog is aroused by something, while a vertical tail indicates aggression.

    A tail held straight out means the dog is curious about something.

    Tail wagging reflects a dog's excitement, with more vigorous wagging relating to greater excitement.  

    In 2016 researchers discovered that the way a dog wags its tail also gives clues about what it's feeling.

    the fabulous dog bed company handmade dog beds waggy tail

  5.  

    How Far Should You Walk Your

    Small Breed Dog?

    the fabulous dog bed company walkies

     

    When it comes to owning and properly caring for a small breed dog, you need to ensure that it gets daily exercise and physical activity to stay healthy and happy.

    Dogs that lack sufficient activity can exhibit behavioral problems, come down with mental issues, and develop obesity problems. But daily exercise can help to ward off these negative outcomes. In addition to exercise, your dog needs a healthy diet, proper grooming, and good health supplements to keep it limber and up for the rigors of regular physical activity and exercise.

    If you’re wondering how far should you walk your small breed dog, read on for some tips.

    Deciding How Far to Go

    When considering how far you should walk your dog, you should think in terms of time, rather than distance. Because each dog breed is a little different and is of a different size, a 1-mile walk for a golden retriever is going to be vastly different than a 1-mile walk for a Chihuahua.

    A general rule of thumb is an average dog in good health should be able to easily tolerate a 30-minute walk daily. If you have a more active breed, as much as 60 minutes may be tolerable. An older dog or a breed that is more sedentary may be better served with a 15- or 20-minute walk.

    However, make sure you know whether your dog is healthy or not. Certain behaviors that may seem slightly weird may actually be signs of illness. This could impact the amount of time your dog requires to be walked significantly.

    Another strategy is to try breaking up the walk into two sessions. Perhaps a brisk 20-minute walk in the morning followed by a 45-minute walk in the evening would fit your schedule well. An older dog or a puppy may tolerate shorter, but more frequent, walks better.

    Keep an eye on the weather too. If it's a hot day, cut back on the walk time, especially if you're only able to walk on hot pavement. Or if your dog seems especially frisky on a cool autumn day, adding another 5 to 10 minutes to the walk shouldn't cause any problems.

    fabulous dog beds handmade in the uk walkies

    Building Stamina

    As when humans begin an exercise program, it's also important when your dog begins going on regular walks to make sure you don't overdo the workout. Too much exercise will leave the dog sore and less willing to go on a walk the next time.

    Start slowly with the program and build up to the desired walking time. If you have a large dog, a gradual build-up of stamina is even more important to prevent joint injuries. Start with 10 minutes for a few days, then 15 minutes for a few days, and onward until you reach the ideal walking time.

    Be Smart on the Walk

    Always keep in mind just how far you are from home as you're going on the walk. If you're walking around the block, you'll end up close to home eventually.