Got Dogs? You Need An Air Purifier for Dog Hair

Air Purifier for Dog Hair

 Wondering why you need an air purifier for dog hair? Well did you know that 15-30% of all Americans are allergic to dog hair. Dog hair allergies can be more severe than cat hair allergies, so using an air purifier can be a great help to those with allergies.

Because dogs secrete proteins that end up in their dander, urine and saliva, if you have a sensitive immune system to these proteins you will tend to suffer from dog allergies. These allergens end up on the carpet, clothing, couch, or anything a dog might come in contact with.

It’s not the dogs hair you are allergic to, it’s the dander and dust the hair holds. Not all dogs breeds produce the same dander so you can be allergic to one breed more than another. And as you know, pet dander can float thru the air which can then get into your lungs and eyes.

Symptoms of Dog Hair Allergies

There are many reasons one might have allergies and it can be hard to pinpoint what is causing your allergies, so make sure you always consult with a Dr. before taking medications.

Dog allergy symptoms can include but not limited to:

  • face, neck or chest rash
  • skin turning red after being licked by a dog
  • nose and eye swelling and itching
  • after dog exposure, couching, wheezing or shortness of breath
  • in those with asthma – a severe asthma attack can happen.

 

Do Air Purifiers Help with Pet Allergies?

Air purifiers for dog hair are about the best choice when it comes to getting a handle on all the dander and dust floating around your home. Aside from the dander your pets give off, dust and allergens comes from other places like furnaces, air conditioners, ceiling fans, clothing, clothes dryers, cooking, and having windows open.

Using things to filter the air like a HEPA (stands for high efficiency particulate air) air purifier will work by forcing air thru a fine mesh that then traps those harmful particles like the pet dander, dust, smoke, etc., and filter clean air back out.

Air purifiers come in many sizes and shapes so you can have one in each room, or install a huge unit to take care of your whole house.

 

How to Choose the Best Air Purifier for Pet Hair

Choosing an air purifier for pet hair can be a bit overwhelming with all the air purifiers out there on the market these days. You can literally spend as little as $20 or as much as $1000 or more. The styles vary so much, and it basically boils down to your exact needs.

Here is a list to give you some options when choosing your air purifier:

**One thing that I really like about the Bissell products is that every Bissell purchase helps save a pet. Bissell proudly supports Bissell Pet Foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets.

Are All Air Purifiers the Same

Understanding what your needs are and why you might be on the hunt for an air purifier brings us to that question, Are All Air Purifiers the Same When it Comes to Pet Odor and Hair?

While the answer is a simple no, it might not seem so simple when you start looking at air purifiers. Let me break it down for you.

  1. The most effective at trapping airborne particles are the HEPA air purifiers. But, these do not remove or trap odors, gases or chemicals. Make sure the HEPA air purifier has some level of an activated carbon material that does absorb those.
  2. If it’s contamination in the air you are looking to remove then a carbon air filter helps with that. But, a carbon filter is less efficient at removing allergens and airborne particles.
  3. Using a UV technology filter system is good for killing viruses and bacteria, but not useful at removing airborne pollutants unless it has a HEPA and activated carbon filtration as well.
  4. Negative ion systems are basically no good for removing of airborne pollutants. They take the particles out of the air and transfer them to surrounding walls or solid surfaces instead of eliminating them. This means, those pollutants are still there and will fall to the ground or re-circulate in the air.
  5. The bottom of the list and one that is totally useless for any kind of pet dander or most common air pollutants is an Ozone filter. Most of the indoor environment chemicals take months or years to react to ozone which makes this option virtually ineffective.  And, this type of air purifier can be dangerous if you have pet birds.

 

There are many manufacturers of air purifiers but when looking for one for your home you want to make sure to read all the info.

  • What size room (sq. ft.) does it cover?
  • How often does it refresh (run it’s cycle)?
  • How loud/quiet is it?
  • Does it have auto settings or timers?
  • How many filters does it have?
  • How often do the filters need changing?
  • What is the cost of filters?
  • How easy is it to get parts and filters?
  • How big is the unit itself?

 

Make a few Changes in Addition to an Air Purifier for Dog Hair

There is no reason you should have to suffer just because you are a pet lover. Having dogs is one of life’s great joys and there are so many dogs needing loving home out there, that the more people with big hearts the better.

But, having a big heart might come with some challenges, like dealing with your allergies. If you can make a few small changes in your daily life of living with dogs, it will be better for you, and in turn you can be a happier dog parent.

  • Finding hypoallergenic dog breeds.
  • Weekly bathing and grooming of your dog with a pet friendly shampoo and conditioner that contains ingredients to help your allergies. Allerpet Dog Allergy Relief is a good one.
  • Training your dogs to stay in certain areas of the home. Maybe keeping them out of your bedroom and just allowed in the main area of your home.
  • Using HEPA purifiers to help reduce the dander and airborne allergens from your pets.
  • Washing your hands when you are done playing with your dogs and try to not touch your face while playing with your dogs.
  • Don’t let your dogs lick your hands or face.
  • Dust and Vacuum more often.
  • Wash bedding and any throw blankets or pillows on your furniture more often.

Choosing to be a pet parent is a big responsibility and one nobody should take lightly. If you feel you can’t handle all the pet hair and danger and possible allergies that might come with being a pet parent, and you have read over all the ways to help with that, consider the fact you might not be ready to take on the role of a pet parent.

Maybe you can donate time at a local shelter for a bit to see how you react to being around dogs and their dander. This will be a good indicator if you can invite a dog into your home to be a forever family member.

For More Help With Dog Allergies

How to Get Rid of Dog Hair

Best Hypoallergenic Dogs for Kids

 

 

Help Your Senior Dog Live A Happy Healthy Life

The beautiful, bright-eyed, over-active puppy you brought home about seven years ago, is now entering a new phase of his life. Welcome to the senior dog years!

Signs of Aging in Senior Dogs

Just like humans, senior dogs will begin to display signs of aging.  Along with the graying muzzles, his mental and physical health will begin to change.

Aging Dogs Arthritis and Joint Problems

You may notice your senior dog begins to walk slower and tire easier.  He may become snappy and not want to be touched.  He probably long ago learned not to jump up on people but now he may also have trouble jumping up onto the porch, into the car or onto the bed. And stairs may be slow or impossible to climb. Old bones and tired muscles are now in control. Consider putting carpet or treads on your steps. Ramps are available for porches, decks, cars and beds. And nutritional supplements can help to ease the arthritis achiness he is feeling. Your Vet may also prescribe an arthritis medication.  A supplement that is working well for our fifteen-year-old senior dog is Glucosamine Chondroitin.  Short frequent walks with your senior dog help to keep his joints limber. Your Vet may also prescribe an arthritis medication.  

  • Consider putting carpet or treads on your steps.
  • Ramps are available for porches, decks, cars, and beds.
  • Nutritional supplements can help to ease the arthritis achiness he is feeling. Your Vet may also prescribe an arthritis medication.  A supplement that is working well for our fifteen-year-old senior dog is Glucosamine Chondroitin.  We use and like the Naturvet Brand.  
  • Short frequent walks with your senior dog help to keep his joints limber.
  • Get an Orthopedic Bed to cushion and support your older dog’s joints.

Incontinence and Your Aging Dog

Older dogs go through changes just as they did in their puppy years. You may notice your senior dog urinating in the house. Remember when you patiently (for the most part) cleaned up his potty accidents, taught him not to jump on visitors and walk beside you (not several blocks ahead) on a leash? Well, now there may again be potty accidents due to forgetfulness or the fact that his bladder and bowels cannot hold it so well any longer. More frequent bathroom breaks may be in order. Remember, your senior dog does not want to disappoint you. He just is not able to wait.

  • If you have a job outside the home, try to arrange for someone to come in during the day to let your dog out for a bathroom break.  Hiring a dog walker may be an option.
  • You can revert to the puppy days and use pee pads in your dog’s area when you are not home.  Puppy pads can also be used in your dog’s bed if he is peeing while lying down.  
  • Another option for dog’s that wet their bed;  Replace the bed with a crib or bassinette mattress, depending on your dog’s size.  Cover with sheets to fit and then you can simply remove the wet sheet, wipe down the plastic surface of the mattress and replace it with a clean sheet.  Often these sheets can be found at yard sales.

 

Age Related Health Issues to Watch for in Your Older Dog:

*Sudden lethargic behavior in a senior dog

*Cloudy eyes in your aging dog

*Older dog not seeming to hear you when called

*Slowness in movement or limping

*Confusion

*Senior dog losing weight

*Senior dog urinating in the house

While many of these changes are a normal part of aging if the symptoms appear suddenly or are very pronounced, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. It could be a sign of a serious ailment that needs medical treatment.

15 Tips to Help Your Senior Dog Enjoy a Healthy, Happy Retirement:

  1. Exercise your senior dog with short, frequent walks and gentle, stimulating play.  Don’t over do and be aware of the temperature when walking.  Choose to take your walks in the early morning or later evening times.  Take a small container and bottle of water with you and offer frequent sips to your dog. For convenience, I recommend a portable water/feeder to carry with you on your dog’s walk. This one has over 13,000 great reviews on Amazon.
  2.  Change to a good quality senior formula dog food.
  3. Avoid giving too many treats or overfeeding to help prevent extra weight on his old bones. Green beans are a good substitute for more fattening treats and are easy for your aging dog to chew.
  4. Consider helpful aids like dog ramps, quality padded and heated beds, add nutritional supplements to his diet.
  5. Hopefully, you have already established a relationship with a good veterinarian that knows your dog. Now is the time to step up the visits to at least twice a year so your vet. can give your senior dog a physical assessment, checking for lumps and any other warning signs that may signal a need for further tests or treatment. Be sure to include dental care in your dog’s Vet visit.
  6. Keep your senior dog groomed, bathed, nails clipped and ears cleaned to help him feel refreshed. He may not think he likes a bath but, just like us, he will feel so much better when freshly bathed and groomed. And don’t forget to tell him, in your best praising tone, how good he smells and looks.
  7. Consider seeking out a dog massage therapist or learning to do dog massage yourself.  Does wonders for achy joints and dogs love to be touched.
  8. Provide your aging dog with good dental care.  Poor care of your dog’s teeth and gums will cause him discomfort and may lead to heart and kidney disease.  Brush his teeth at least a couple of times a week with a toothbrush specially made for dogs.  If you need help with how to brush your dog’s teeth, take a look at this article.  You can also supply your senior dog with a dog teeth cleaning chew toy that helps clean his teeth and massages the gums.  And, he will not even suspect it is good for him.  Get your dog a professional teeth cleaning at his veterinarian if his mouth has been neglected and he has tarter and plaque buildup.
  9. An elevated food and water bowl will be helpful if your aging dog has difficulty bending down to eat and drink.
  10. If your senior dog has trouble walking or getting up, try a sling lift harness specially made to help him.  We used one for our senior Lab mix and it was a true blessing.  It helped us to get her outside to potty as well as gave her a small bit of exercise.
  11. Older dogs tend to have less of an appetite and may lose some weight.  f your senior dog does not want to eat, try adding bits of cheese, some meat baby food or canned sardines to his food.  This often will help stimulate his appetite and help prevent weight loss.
  12. As the weather gets chillier, make sure your elderly dog is staying warm.  Provide him with a warm sweater or tuck a blanket around him as he sleeps.
  13. Keep your aged dog bathed and groomed.  We all feel better after a nice bath or shower and your older dog is no exception.
  14. Spend time taking your older dog out for special treats.  Chances are he will still enjoy a trip to Starbucks for a Puppichino or to McDonalds for a plain cheeseburger.  Take him to the park, simply to enjoy being outside and watching the world go by.
  15. Above all, shower your senior dog with lots and lots of hugs, praise and affection. Dogs, as well as humans, live happy healthier lives when they are shown love and acceptance.

Your senior dog may not be the bouncy active dog he once was but inside still dwells the puppy you once knew.  But, in his golden years he still desires many of the things he has always enjoyed.  By giving him these things, as his health permits, it will help him to live a happier healthier life and you will know you have given him the best throughout all the years of his life.

 

Your Dog Swallowed WHAT???

Panic settles in when you discover your dog swallowed an object not meant for canine consumption.  Dogs have an innate ability to find and consume the most unusual things.  Knowing what to do when your dog has swallowed something bad for him is the first step to making sure he will recover from his antics.

Prevent Dog Swallowing Foreign Objects

It is nearly impossible to entirely prevent your dog from swallowing things that are bad for them.  But, it is important to take our best precautions in order to assure our canine companions remain healthy.

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won’t cost you a penny more) Click here for my full disclosure policy.

  • If you have a fenced yard your dog is allowed to play in, check it regularly for any items that may have fallen or been thrown into the yard.  Make sure your children keep any toys picked up after playing.
  • Always check on your dog regularly when he is outside.
  • When walking your dog, keep him within sight on a leash.  They are amazingly fast at finding foreign objects to eat.
  • Keep all laundry, socks, underwear, and shoes out of reach of your dog.
  • Make sure your purse is tightly closed and out of reach.
  • Keep all trash secured in a locked trash can away from your dog’s inquiring nose.  This locking trash can works great for that purpose and comes in five colors to match your decor.
  • If you crate your dog at night or while you’re away, use a crate bed that is as chew proof as possible.
  • Dogs love raw beef bones, but be sure to take the bone away after all the meat is off the bone. (Do not feed cooked bones as they break down and become splintery.
  • Two great options to keep your dog busy and satisfy his desire to chew are Buffalo Horns or Deer Antlers.  They last forever and don’t tend to splinter or break off.  Of course, as with anything, always monitor your dog’s chewing, removing the item when you are not with him.  My dogs have had their Bully Bones and Deep Antlers for months and they remain intact.  And, my heavy chewer, American Staffordshire Terrier really gives them a workout.

Symptoms Your Dog Swallowed a Foreign Object

  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting – usually undigested
  • Nausea – frequently licking of the lips, drooling, gagging
  • Loss of appetite
  • Panting
  • May want to be alone, retreating to another room or into a corner
  • Abdomen tender to the touch

What To Do If You Suspect Your Dog Swallowed A Foreign Object

The first and most important thing to do if you even suspect your dog has swallowed a foreign object is to call your Veterinarian.  The Vet will be able to tell you if your dog will need to be seen immediately or if you can take a wait and see approach.  Some of the most common things veterinarians hear are:

My Dog Swallowed A Sock  

We all seem to have the problem of our washing machine eating socks, you know, the mysterious occurrence of two socks going in and only one coming out, usually never to be seen again.  A similar thing happens with dogs.  Maybe you left your dirty socks on the floor or in an accessible laundry basket.  Suddenly, instead of a pair, you have a single.  This could be a case of your dog swallowing your sock.  It is important to get your dog help as quick as possible before the sock enters the intestine where it could become lodged, creating a blockage. Your Vet will likely decide to x-ray to determine where the sock is located within your dog’s body.  From there he will possibly decide to induce vomiting if the sock is not yet in the intestine or surgery may be needed if the sock has passed into the intestine.  In any event, it is imperative that the dog is at his Vet.  Do not induce the vomiting yourself, as the sock could come partially up and cause the dog to choke.  Best to be at the Vet if that happens.   

My Dog Swallowed A Corncob

We know this emergency well.  Our Pitbull, Bella was adopted from our county Pound.  She was very thin and sad looking but did not appear really unhealthy.  Withing about two months she had put on some pounds and looked good.  Suddenly, she began to vomit, grow lethargic and would not eat.  We took her to her Vet who examined her and sent her to a specialist who diagnosed her with an intestinal obstruction.  She was scheduled for surgery where they removed a putrid corncob about six inches long.  The corncob was still intact.  Apparently, before being picked up by the county Pound, she had been roaming the streets, finding whatever she could to eat and survive.  She found a corncob.  Bella’s surgeon theorized that the corncob had originally settled in a place where it was not causing symptoms.  Then, it moved and that’s when the symptoms began.  Even with the corncob removed, there was considerable infection left behind.  With good care and about $5,000 in fees, Bella recovered.

My Dog Swallowed A Bone 

Dogs and bones, of course, go together.  Dogs love them and will love them to death, gnawing away until they are gone, but the cannot be allowed to do so. 

  1. Splinters of the bone can become stuck in the dog’s teeth, gums or throat. 
  2. Whole chunks of bone can be swallowed and become lodged in the dog’s intestines. 
  3. Sharp pieces of bones can cause injury to your dog’s esophagus, windpipe or cause severe rectum bleeding. 
  4. Sharp fragments may pierce the intestinal wall or stomach causing a bacterial infection called peritonitis.  This is potentially fatal to your dog.
  5. The bone may become lodged in your dog’s windpipe, blocking air passage and creating a breathing difficulty
  6. The bone can become stuck in your dog’s jaw, keeping him from being able to open or close his mouth and causing great pain and discomfort.
  7. Constipation may result from the bowel being unable to pass the stool past the bone piece that is stuck in the intestine.  This will cause your dog to experience a build-up of painful gas as well as pain from the sharpness of the bone.

My Dog Swallowed String

String is so much fun for dogs, but bad fun.  They love to unravel their bedding and toys, pulling and devouring the string.  Unfortunately, this fun can turn hazardous, when the string is swallowed and becomes wrapped around your dog’s insides.  Be cautious around Thanksgiving.  The string used to tie the turkey legs are an especially tasty temptation with the bits of meat attached. Sometimes string your dog eats will also have objects attached to them, such as fish hooks or needles, causing even greater concern.  DO NOT pull or cut any string you may see visible in your dog’s mouth or protruding from his rectum as this will likely cause even more danger for your dog.  Take him to his Vet immediately. 

My Dog Swallowed A Bully Stick

Bully sticks are easily digestible and break down in your dog’s digestive tract.  This makes them one of the least harmful objects for your dog to swallow.  Just be sure to choose a quality Bully Stick.  These Dog Bully Sticks are 100% USA sourced and made so no worrying about what some foreign country is allowing in the product.  They are high in protein and odorless.

My Dog Swallowed A Penny

A penny may seem the least harmful foreign object your dog could swallow.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Pennies contain zinc which is extremely toxic to dogs.  Your dog needs to be seen IMMEDIATELY if you even suspect he has swallowed a penny.  Zinc poisoning can cause:

  • Liver Failure
  • Kidney Failure
  • Anemia

Your vet will likely x-ray to reveal the location of the penny.  Smaller objects can often be removed through an endoscopy tube inserted down your dog’s throat.  Then the dog will need supportive care to monitor and treat any toxins from the penny.

My Dog Ate His Toy

Depending on what kind and what part of his toy he has swallowed, the dog may eventually pass it through his stool.  Small non-sharp pieces, without string attached, may come out the other end okay.  Of course, call your Vet anyway to be safe.

My Dog Swallowed A Rock

A rock of all things!  Couldn’t be tasty.  But dogs will eat about anything.  If your dog swallows a pebble of smaller rock, it will likely pass through the stool.  If he swallows a larger rock, your dog may require surgery.  As always, call your Vet to confirm the best course.

My Dog Ate A Stick

Dogs love chewing sticks.  They can and will chew off and swallow bits and pieces.  The danger occurs when sharp pieces jab into the mouth which can cause an infection.  Also, sharp chunks can become lodged in the dog’s throat or intestine causing a blockage or infection.  Call your Vet right away if you know your dog has swallowed a stick.

Dogs are natural chewers.  They can and will chew almost anything.  We as their caretakers must be vigilant to supply safer alternatives for chewing as well as making sure their environment is as safe and free from danger as possible.

  • Choose dog beds that are as indestructible as possible.  The Kuranda Elevated Dog Bed is exceptionally strong and durable.  It can be used inside or out and resists moisture.  If you prefer a plusher choice, the PetFusion Ultimate Dog Bed is a great choice.  Not only is this bed durable and made for heavy chewers, but it is also made of orthopedic memory foam and has a waterproof liner with a removable cover for washing.
  • Supply your dog with an assortment of safer chewing options. Elk Antlers are a wonderful option for aggressive chewers. Elk Antlers are long-lasting and very hard to break off pieces.  They will supply months of chewing pleasure for your dog and hopefully distract him from seeking out guilty and dangerous pleasure, such as socks, underwear, and trash.  This Ultra-Durable Chew Toy made by Monster K-9 has been tested on heavy chewers including Pitbulls and German Shepherds.  It is non-toxic with a lifetime guarantee, so you have nothing to lose in giving it a try.

Your veterinarian is your dog’s best ally.  When your dog swallows a foreign object, place a call to him immediately.  He is the best one to advise on the next step.  If after hours, do not hesitate to call the nearest Emergency Veterinarian.  Time is of the most importance on many swallowed objects.  It can make the difference in a simpler inducing vomiting solution and a serious and expensive surgery.  Also, it can make a difference in whether your dog recovers completely or dies.

 

 

Choose The Best Hypoallergenic Dogs For Kids

Choosing the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids is an important step if your allergic child wants to have a dog in his life. Hypoallergenic dogs is a term that is not totally true.  No dog is completely hypoallergenic but some dogs are less likely to cause allergic reactions.  Do keep in mind; just because a dog is considered hypoallergenic does not make him the perfect dog for your child.  Anytime you are adding a dog to your family, there will be many considerations, including: the size of the dog, the activity level of the dog and how that matches your family’s lifestyle, and upkeep of the dog.  With these things in mind, let’s look at some of the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids and their particular characteristics.

What causes an allergy to dogs?

Dogs are typically the most common animal that causes allergies while cats, horses and other animals may also cause allergic reactions. Allergies can be triggered by a number of factors but there is no definitive answer on what specifically triggers an allergy to dogs in humans. Often people who have been living with pets for many years suddenly develop an allergy as their immune system changes over time or they are exposed to more allergens than before from different sources such as work, home environments etc…

Some characteristics of dog breeds might contribute towards making them ‘hypoallergenic’. These include furless coats (like poodles), short hair like terriers and low dander production – which refers to how much particles become airborne when it’s released from the animal’s skin.

What Makes a Dog Hypoallergenic

While you may long to see your allergic child running along beside a beautiful Golden Retriever or friendly Labrador Retriever, it is not recommended for a child with allergies.  The Golden and Lab are huge shedders along with being big droolers.  Both breeds make great dogs for kids but not for a child with allergies.  But, there are some amazing hypoallergenic dog alternatives.

This brings us to what makes a dog be considered hypoallergenic.  Dogs that shed a lot of their hair are very allergenic due to the amount of dander that is also shed with the hair.  the more shed hair, the more dander.  Dander is the main culprit that affects allergies.  The other thing that causes allergies to flare is saliva from the dog.  Dogs that are big. slobbery droolers are out of the question for allergy sufferers;  think Saint Bernard, that would be a big NO!

So, the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids with allergies would be a low-shedding dog that does not slobber a lot.

Best Hypoallergenic Dogs For Kids With Allergies

  • Bichon FriseThe bichon is a small dog that especially seems to like kids.  With their tightly coiled wooly hair, they are non-shedders but will require regular brushing and grooming about once per month to avoid matting.

  • Yorkshire Terrier– the Yorkshire Terrier is a small, energetic dog that’s perfect for children. They are also considered to be hypoallergenic because they don’t have any heavy shedding or dander.  Yorkies make great dogs for older kids who want a pet but not something too demanding of their time and attention. The Yorkie is definitely one of the little dogs that is a good non-shedding choice.  Health issues of the breed include epilepsy, patellar luxation and hypothyroidism.
  • Poodle – Poodles come in several sizes, so there is a poodle to fit in all needs and lifestyles.  Sizes range from the Tiny Teacup Poodle, weighing 3-5 pounds to the Standard Poodle, weighing in at 70 pounds plus.  Poodles have tightly curled hair that does not shed but will mat if not regularly brushed and professionally groomed.  Often poodle owners choose to clip their dog’s hair close for easy maintenance.  Poodles generally are real clowns and enjoy playing with the children in the family. The poodle is usually easy to train. Health concerns in the breed include epilepsy, patellar luxation, and hypothyroidism.

  • Soft Coated Wheaten TerrierThe Wheaten Terrier is a dog that likes to be active and should be exercised daily. This hypoallergenic breed does well with kids and usually readily adapts to his environment, whether that be city life or country life.  This silky-coated dog needs regular brushing to prevent his hair from matting.

  • Portuguese Water DogThe Portuguese Water Dog is a larger breed that would do well in an active family who likes outdoor activities. This low-shed breed would make a great dog for kids who suffer from allergies.  This is the hypoallergenic dog that President Obama chose for his daughter who was allergic to dogs.  This breed requires grooming to keep his waterproof coat in top shape.

  • SchnauzerThe Schnauzer is an active breed that enjoys living in an active family with kids.  This hypoallergenic dog breed comes in three sizes; Miniature Schnauzer, Standard Schnauzer and the Giant Schnauzer, so there is one for every age child.  The breed does require regular grooming to prevent his coat from matting.  The schnauzer tends to be a protective breed that will guard his family.

  • MalteseThe Maltese dog is small size dog and known to be brave and fearless.  This non-shedding dog would probably do best in a home with older children due to being more fragile despite the fact that they view themselves as big and bad.  The Maltese requires regular grooming of their silky hair.

  • Bedlington TerrierThe Bedlington Terrier has an appearance that reminds you of a lamb.  His soft, curly, wooly coat does require regular grooming.  His activity level is less demanding but he does enjoy a daily walk and play activity.

  • Irish Water SpanielThe Irish Water Spaniel is a happy go lucky dog that requires an active lifestyle.  This double-coated dog will need to be brushed regularly to keep his coat mat-free.

  • Spanish Water DogThe Spanish Water Dog is a highly active dog and will need a family that has an active lifestyle.  If hiking, boating or running is a part of your life, this non-shedding dog will fit right into your family.  The breed tends to have a naturally protective nature.  The Spanish Water Dog does not require as much grooming as some of the other hypoallergenic dog breeds but should be shaved yearly.

  • Kerry Blue Terrier The Kerry Blue Terrier is an active dog who loves to have fun with his family.  His coat will require regular brushing and grooming.

The Crossbred Hypoallergenic Dog Breeds for Kids

Crossbreeding of various dogs with the poodle has become quite popular in recent years. This is mainly due to the desire to create a more allergy-free breed.  As with all dogs, you will not be getting a completely allergy-free dog, but it brings you closer to achieving it.  It should be noted that the second generation of these dogs is where the lessening of allergens kick in. Both of these breeds are considered great hypoallergenic dogs for kids. Generally, crossbred dogs tend to be more-free of health concerns due to the diluting of any health issues of a singular breed.  However, the dog is still susceptible to the health concerns of each breed he is mixed with.  

  • Labradoodle – The Labradoodle when bred with a poodle can produce offspring that are considered to be hypoallergenic.  With this dog, you have the sweet, kid-friendly nature of the Lab, combined with the non-shedding characteristic of the poodle.  This dog will also need regular grooming and brushing to prevent matting, especially if they have inherited the curly coat of the poodle parent.
  • Goldendoodle – What could be more adorable than the combination of the sweet golden retriever and a poodle?  Not much!  Goldens are also usually gentle-natured and very loyal to their kid.  Again, regular grooming is necessary to keep that gorgeous coat mat-free.

 

This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won’t cost you a penny more) Click here for my full disclosure policy.

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, as many as 3 in 10 allergic people in the United States have an allergic reaction to dogs and cats.  The hair itself is not the culprit but the saliva, dander, pollens, and dust that cling to it.  This is why it is important to bathe and groom your dog on a regular basis.  Between grooming, use grooming wipes to gently remove allergens from your dog’s coat.

 

Helping Your Child Live With Allergies to Dogs

  • Carefully research and select from the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids.  If possible, have your child spend some time with the dog before committing to adopting it.
  • Regularly groom your dog to remove allergens and keep the hair mat-free.  Many non-shedding dogs are double-coated.  The hair does shed but instead of dropping loose, it mats under the top layer.  Use a brush meant for the purpose of removing the undercoat.  I like the Pet Grooming Tool with the Two-sided Undercoat Rake.
  • Develop a housecleaning routine to minimize allergens.

Reducing allergy symptoms from your dog in your home:

-Place a HEPA filter in your bedroom and the room where you spend most of your time. This will remove allergens from air as they enter through heating or cooling vents, doors, windows etc.

-Keeping your home clean and as dust free as possible will also help reduce allergens. Vacuum regularly and consider getting a HEPA vacuum cleaner to remove dust, hair and dander from carpets as well as furniture surfaces.

-Keep pets off of upholstered furniture and mattresses if possible or get slipcovers which are washable for the purposes of cleaning.

-Bathe your dog weekly with hypoallergenic shampoo (and use antihistamine treatments) in order to keep them free of excess oils, dirt and bacteria that can trigger allergies in people around your home; this is especially important when it’s time for allergy season!

Give the idea of dog ownership careful thought before deciding to add a dog to your family. A dog should be a lifetime commitment once he becomes yours. It is very stressful and hurtful for the dog to be brought into a family, only to be given away if problems arise. If you know someone that owns one of the breeds considered hypoallergenic, ask if you can bring your child for several short visits. Allow your child to interact and play with the dog to see if any allergy symptoms appear. Sort of a test drive. Spend as much time as you can with the non-shedding or less allergen type of dogs to get a good idea of what works with your child.

Although some allergic children may not be able to live with a dog, many can with the proper preparation and care.  With careful selection and care, your child with an allergy to dogs may soon be romping and playing with his new best friend with less or no allergy symptoms. Spend as much time as you can with the non-shedding or less allergen type of dogs to get a good idea of what works with your child. Don’t skimp on the time spent looking for the new less dander family member to add to your family. The time spent looking for a hypoallergenic dog will lead you to the perfect canine companion to add to the family.

HOW TO GET RID OF DOG HAIR

If you have dogs, dog hair is simply part of your life.  As dog owners we are constantly fighting the swirling hair floating across the floor and hunting for the lint roller to swipe at our clothing before heading out the door.  Let’s explore some helpful tips to get rid of dog hair.

Best Dog Hair Remover For Furniture

Ideally, pet households will have leather furniture.  Leather is simply the easiest to clean up dog hair.  Wipe with a slightly damp cloth and the hair comes right up.  The same holds true for cleaning up muddy paw prints.  If leather is not your taste or in your budget, here are easy tips to keep your home free (ish) of dog hair:
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  • Furniture upholstery can be cleaned of dog hair with a damp latex glove.  Wipe across the furniture fabric and the dog hair will stick to the glove.  Pre-wiping with a fabric softener sheet will help to loosen the hair.  In a pinch, if you can’t locate your latex glove (or if you are allergic to latex) a damp hand will help remove the hair also.  After removing the hair, simply rinse the glove well and it’s ready to go for your next dog hair cleanup.
  • Sticky tape, such as packing tape or duck tape works well to remove dog hair from furniture.  Either use by the piece or wrap sticky side out around your hand to pickup dog hair.
  • I’ve recently discovered that a kitchen plastic wrap called Press n Seal works great at dog hair pickup.  Tear off enough to wrap around your hand, sticky side out and use like you would use tape to remove the hair.  Or, tear off a larger sheet and lay sticky side down on your furniture, press flat with your hand and remove.  You will be amazed at the amount of dog hair that is sticking to the wrap.
  • Of course the trusty lint roller is a staple to help get rid of dog hair.  Mine was always running out of sticky paper or I’d find it sticking to everything that was in the drawer with it.  Then I found the washable, reusable lint roller. This thing is amazing at picking up dog hair, dust and lint.  And, it does not stick to everything stored with it.  Added bonus, it comes with a short handle version and a longer handle one to reach out of the way places.

Cleanup Dog Hair From Bedding and Pillows

  • Remove pillow covers from their forms.
  • Shake the bedding (human or dog) thoroughly outside before adding to the washer.
  • Add approx. 1/2 cup white vinegar to the rinse cycle.  This acts as a natural softener and helps to release the hair from the fabric fibers.
  • Toss a couple new tennis balls into the dryer with the bedding.  The tennis balls tossing about with the fabric will help to gently pound the hair loose and it will end up in the lint trap (which you will need to clean immediately.)

Clean up Dog Hair From Wood and Tile Floors

Best Broom For Dog Hair on Hardwood Floors (and Tile!)

  • Rubber brooms are a wonder tool to get rid of dog hair. Unlike regular bristle brooms, the rubber broom for pet hair allows you to sweep up the hair without it blowing about.  I first saw this in use at a Home and Garden Show and was mega impressed.  Bought it and have been loving it for about five years now.  I’ve since noticed my dog’s Veterinarian office as well as the Doggie Day Care are using this rubber broom to get rid of dog hair.  Must be something to it!  You can get the Rubber Broom for a great price on Amazon.

Best Dust Mop For Dog Hair

The Best Dust Mop for Dog Hair is a microfiber mop that the hair clings to as it is picked up.  I’ve used several but finally settled on the Bona Dust Mop.  I am a huge fan of all the Bona products and use their cleaner regularly for all my hard surface floors.  I even put their cleaner in my Bissell Crosswave.  I found a good deal on Amazon, especially if you are just getting started with the Bona products.  You get the long handle, dusting pad, cleaning pad and a 32oz. spray bottle of their cleaning solution.  Get the 4-piece set from Amazon.

Best Vacuum For Pet Hair And Hardwood Floors

  • One of my favorite go-to tools is a bit pricier but I would not be without it.  The BISSELL Crosswave Pet Pro All in One Wet Dry Vacuum Cleaner and Mop for Hard floors and Area Rugs is AMAZING!  This machine is a vacuum and floor cleaner in one.  You simply fill the canister with either the Bissell Floor Cleaner or your favorite brand and the machine lays down the cleaner and sucks up the dog hair, cleaning and vacuuming the floor at the same time.  This dual action saves time and does a super job of cleaning the floor.  Wood floors should never be subjected to large amounts of liquid and this vacuum allows you to control how much you put down.  I love this machine soooo much.  Between my daughter and I, we have six dogs and three of the Bissell Crosswaves.  An added advantage of this vacuum is that it also cleans area rugs.  This video will give you an excellent view of how well the Bissell Crosswave works.

I consider the Bissell Crosswave to be the Best Vacuum for Tile Floors and the Best Vacuum for Wood Floors

Order the Bissell Crosswave from Amazon.

How to Get Dog Hair Out of Carpet

Carpet can be a really dirty place in your home.  The germs and dirt that reside there are scary.  Particles get caught up in the fibers and set up house.  That is one very big reason why solid surface floors, such as hardwoods, laminate and tile have become so popular.  Easy to clean and keep relatively germ-free.  However if your home already has carpet or you simply prefer the soft feel of carpet beneath your feet, her are some ideas to help keep your carpet clean and get rid of dog hair.

How to Remove Hair From Carpet Without A Vacuum

A good pet hair vacuum is really a necessity for families with pets in their homes.  No matter how much brushing and grooming you do, your sweet Fur Child will still be releasing a huge amount of hair and dander each day.

However, sometimes it is just not convenient to drag out the vacuum.  Or, for times your vacuum breaks, these dog hair remover tips will help you to clean up quick.  You can also use these ideas before you do your regular vacuuming if you like.

  • Add several drops of fabric softener to a full spray bottle of water.  Spray over carpet, then brush with a stiff-bristled brush or bristle broom.
  • Rake through carpet with a Rubber Broom or Carpet Rake.
  • Use a long-handled Lint Roller.

What is The Best Vacuum For Pet Hair

Before I bought my vacuum, (the one I consider the best vacuum for dog hair)  I vowed not to give in to all the advertising and hype I had seen for this particular vacuum.  But, after struggling for years with my cheaper sweepers and never being satisfied with how well they removed the hair from the carpets in my multi-dog house, I succumbed.  I finally purchased a Dyson Vacuum.  So very glad I did.  This vacuum really sucks (in a good way).  These are a few of the things I like about this amazing sweeper:

  • Strongest suction of any vacuum. Even more power for tough tasks
  • Self-adjusting cleaner head Seals in suction across carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile floors
  • Tangle-free Turbine tool, stair tool, combination tool included.
  • Whole-machine HEPA filtration ensures allergens and bacteria are captured and trapped.
  • Hygienically empty the bin with the push of a button

NOTE: I am a huge fan of Bissell and own their Crosswave (which, as stated above, I love) but have not tried their larger vacuums yet.  Planning to in the future, simply because I appreciate this company so much.  They are very animal oriented, especially Cathy Bissell who hugely supports animal rescue.  And, each purchase of their products results in a donation made to rescue efforts.  Yay!!!

How to Remove Pet Hair From Clothes

  • Duct tape
  • Rubber glove, slightly wet
  • Sticky Lint Roller
  • Palm of your hand, slightly wet

When a dog is a part of your family, his hair will naturally be a part of your decor.  It’s difficult to totally eliminate dog hair but with a little effort you can greatly decrease the amount.  Having the right tools and products on hand will help make the job easier and it does help to only have friends who are dog lovers too.  They understand!

 

 

 

Dog Poop; What the Color and Consistency Means

Dog Poop, something no one wants to talk about (or clean up.)  However, your dog’s poop can reveal a lot about his health.  Consistency, color and frequency can all be indicators of problems.

Nobody likes cleaning up dog poop but paying attention to certain aspects of your dog’s poop can help to detect health problems early on.  And, since it needs cleaned up anyway, take the opportunity to check out these characteristics of your dog’s smelly gift. 

What is Normal Dog Poop?

Normal can vary from dog to dog but generally speaking, normal dog poop will be firm and moist with a medium to darker brown color, similar to chocolate.  It is also usually shaped somewhat like a Tootsie Roll.

Changes in Dog Stool Color or Texture

Why is my Dog’s Poop Yellow?

Changes in your dog’s stool to a yellow color could be the result of something he ate.  In this case, the yellow will usually appear in splotches in the poop as opposed to a solid yellow.  Yellow dog poop can also be caused by something more serious, such as, liver problems or intestinal parasites.  A trip to your dog’s vet is the best idea to rule out serious issues.

Why is my Dog’s Poop Red?

Red dog poop can also mean your dog has eaten something red.  This is usually caused when feeding human table scraps to your dog.  The red poop color is also caused by bleeding in the dog’s lower digestive tract.  It can be the result of inflammation or if the dog is straining to poop.

Why is my Dog’s Poop Green?

Green dog poop can mean that your dog has eaten an large amount of grass or it could be a result of a more serious issue, such as internal parasites or the ingestion of rat poisoning.  An immediate Vet appointment is necessary.

Why is my Dog’s Poop Black?

If your dog’s poop is a black tarry color or a maroon shade, it can mean he has bleeding in his upper gastrointestinal tract and is bleeding internally.  An immediate trip to the dog’s Veterinarian is necessary.

Why is my Dog’s Poop Runny?

Runny, loose dog poop can happen anytime.  And, usually does.  Often, this is a result of changing your dog’s diet.  Or, he may have been counter-surfing or garbage can diving.  If this is the reason, the stool will return to normal in a short time.  If it does not, or if your dog is showing other symptoms, such as; lethargy, loss of appetite or not drinking water, call your Vet right away.

Why is my Dogs Poop Greasy Looking?

A greasy looking dog stool can be a sign of Pancreatitis, which is an inflammation of the pancreas.  This may be caused by too much fat in the diet from a high fat dog food or feeding table scraps.

Why is There Mucous in my Dogs Poop?

A certain amount of mucous in a dog’s stool is normal.  It is produced to help lubricate and move food waste through the colon.  An excess of mucous in dog poop can be a sign of parasites or even parvovirus.  See your Veterinarian to check it out.

Why are There White Specks in my Dog’s Poop?

Small, white segments in dog poop can be pieces of tapeworm.  You may also see very thin, wiggly worms within your dog’s poop.  Take a sample to the Vet for treatment options.

Why is There Hair in my Dog’s Poop?

Hair in dog poop can be a result of excessive grooming on your dog’s part.  Allergies or skin issues can cause your dog to lick himself excessively which will allow him to swallow the fur.  What goes in, will come out.  Check your dog’s skin for red or bumpy spots and pay attention to runny noses, sneezing and coughing which are signs he may have allergies.  Check out these signs your dog has allergies for more help.

 

Infographic by petMD.com

You likely will need to take a stool sample into your veterinarian for a definitive diagnosis why your dog has a change in color or texture of his stool. 

Tips for Gathering a Dog Stool Sample:

  • Make sure the stool is fresh.
  • Using a clean plastic bag, placed over your hand, gently scoop the sample into a clean, shallow plastic container.
  • You can also try a plastic spoon of popsicle stick to scoop the stool into the container.
  • Refrigerate the stool sample until transport to the Vet.

The color and consistency of your dog’s poop can be indicators of health issues, both minor and serious.  Your dog’s veterinarian is the only one who can give you the full scoop on what the changes in your dog’s poop means.  Any changes should be checked out by your vet, especially if they persist and/or are accompanied by other symptoms, such as: change in appetite or water consumption, lethargy, vomiting or anything else that is unusual to your dog.  Get your dog seen by his vet quickly to assure his return to good health.

 

Are Rawhide Bones Bad For Dogs?

The short answer is YES!  Rawhide bones can be a danger to your dog’s health.  Chewing is a healthy and necessary part of your dog’s life.  Dog love to chew and chewing helps to keep his teeth clean but be very careful what your dog chews.

Five Reasons Rawhide Bones Are Unsafe For Your Dog

  • Can cause digestive upset  As your dog consumes his rawhide chew, it becomes a gooey, slimy mess that can get stuck in the roof of his mouth, in his throat or esophagus.  
  • Large pieces may be broken off and become lodged in your dog’s digestive tract, causing a potentially fatal blockage.  this is one of the most common causes of emergencies in Veterinary practices and often requires surgery to save the dog’s life.
  • Rawhide bones may contain harmful chemicals.  Rawhides are soaked in peroxide, bleach and even has been soaked in arsenic to remove the hair and “clean” the hide.  The chews are often coated with “flavor enhancers” to entice your dog.
  • Rawhide bones are commonly made outside the USA, where regulations are laxer.  Countries such as China, Korea and Thailand are frequent sources. 

Why Rawhide Bones Are Unsafe For Your Dog

 

After seeing how Rawhide Chew Bones are made, I’m sure you will agree, these should not be an option in your dog’s life.  Fortunately, there are better options, although you should monitor anything your dog chews.

 Safe Dog Chews – Alternatives To Deadly Rawhides

  • Carrots make great short-term chews for dogs.  These are more a treat than a chew since most dogs will make short work of them.  Most dogs love carrots due to their crunch and natural sweetness.  You will love them for their nutrition value.  They are loaded with vitamins and are low in calories which makes for a great treat for dogs watching their weight.  The larger carrots work well for big dogs but I like to keep bags of baby carrots in my fridge for my crew.  My Pitbull mix, Lab mix and Boxer mix all love when I head for the Refrigerator, knowing they are likely to be offered a carrot. 

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  • Deer, Elk and Moose Antlers provide long-term chewing pleasure for your dog.  Antlers are naturally shed in the Spring.  They are gathered and cut into pieces for all dog sizes.  My heavy chewers have been working on their antlers for months and still going strong. 

 

 

  • Bully Horns are another awesome choice instead of Rawhide Bones.  These are my dogs personal favorites.  They last forever and the dogs love to chew them for hours.  They have a hollow center that can be filled with peanut butter for an added treat.  Or, try putting a couple small carrots into the hollow to give your dog some mental stimulation.

 

 

Dogs love to chew and they are gonna chew whether it’s your shoe, furniture leg or a healthy natural choice that you choose.  Chewing is not only enjoyable for your dog, it’s a necessary activity for his dental health.  Bad dental health can lead to an unhealthy body,including heart disease.  For more help with keeping your dog’s teeth and gums healthy, check out this article.

Bone Broth for Dogs

Bone Broth for Dogs is a tail-wagging, tongue licking, nutrition packed addition to your dog’s diet.  This broth, full of densely packed goodness will please your dog’s palate while allowing you to feel assured you are contributing to his good health.

Benefits of Bone Broth for Dogs

  • Bone Broth contains joint supporting items like glucosamine. chondroitin, and hyaluronic acid.
  • Bone Broth contains a large amount of Glysine which acts as a liver detoxifying agent.  Our dogs are exposed to an enormous amount of chemicals in a normal household, such as: carpets, upholstery, detergents and cleaning products and flea medications.  These chemicals work constantly to assault your dog’s liver.  Bone Broth to the rescue!
  • Bone Broth is loaded with gelatine which helps with food sensitivities, digestion and allergies.
  • Older or sick dogs can benefit from nutrient-rich bone broth to help make up for what they are lacking due to a poor appetite.  The taste may also encourage them to eat when their appetite is poor.

How to Make Bone Broth for Dogs

Feeding your dog bone broth is a healthy, tasty choice.  Fortunately, it is also an inexpensive choice.  Making the broth is easy and can be made in larger batches and stored for several days in the refrigerator.

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Items needed to Make Bone Broth for Your Dogs

  • Large slow cooker
  • Bones!  Top choices here are beef marrow bones and poultry bones, mainly: chicken, turkey or duck necks, backs, wings and feet.  If you have access to organic bones, even better.  Ask the smaller local butcher shops to save for you.  It will cost very little for a large amount.
  • Water
  • Apple cider vinegar, natural is better but not necessary.
  • Optional ingredients:  Healthy vegetables and herbs such as: carrots, spinach, broccoli, green beans and parsley.

Bone Broth Recipe for Dogs

  • Place a large amount of bones into the crock pot.  Amount is your decision, but more is better.  
  • Cover bones with water until the level is about three inches over the bones.
  • Add apple cider vinegar at a ration of one tablespoon per gallon of water.  The vinegar form the gelatin as the mixture cooks.
  • Cover and cook on high for approximately one hour.  Lover temperature to simmer and continue to cook for 24 hours.
  • After 24 hours, now you can add any preferred vegetables.  Recover and allow to cool.
  • Remove bones with a straining spoon and discard.  Your dogs should not eat these bones, since cooked bones will chip and break, possibly causing injury to your dog.
  • Refrigerate a couple hours or longer.  There will likely be a layer of fat on top.  Skim or break this off and discard.
  • The layer below should be rich and gelatinous.  If not, try adding more vinegar next time.  It can still be used the way it is.  So, no waste!
  • Store your bone broth in covered containers or canning jars.  
  • It is also a good idea to freeze some for when your dog becomes ill.  You can freeze individual smaller portions in ice cube trays or small plastic containers.  They will keep for several months in the freezer.

Where to Buy Bones for Bone Broth

Bone broth bones can often be found at your local grocery store.  Ask in the meat department and the butcher will usually save some for you to pick up on a regular basis.  I’ve also had luck finding them in the freezer area.  Our local store packages them as they cut the meat and sells them in packs of 2-3.  

Most towns also have local butcher shops where you can purchase fresh meat and get meats cut to order.  Ask the butcher to sell you the bones.

Feeding Your Dog Bone Broth

Your dog’s bone broth can be spooned directly onto your dog’s regular food.  Just place it on top.  According to preference, you can mix in or not.  Although, if you choose to not mix it in, your dog may just decide to eat the broth off the top and decide the food below does not taste as good.  The amount of broth you feed is entirely up to you.  Several large spoonfuls is usually about right.

And, that’s all there is to it.  Simple ingredients, inexpensive and so, so good for your dog, both in taste and nutrition.

More Ways to Use Bone Broth for Dogs

  1. Add bone broth as your liquid when making dog treats.  Be sure to refrigerate cookies.
  2. Freeze bone broth in ice cube trays for yummy frozen treats for your dog in warm weather.

You can order from a great selection of dog bone/paw shape ice cube and baking molds here.

Where to Buy Bone Broth

If you run out of your delicious bone broth or in a pinch, you can purchase ready-made bone broth here.

Both liquid and powder that you mix with water are available.  Good to keep some on hand for when your dog is looking at you expectantly and doesn’t want to wait.

So, get busy, make your dog some yummy bone broth.  His nose will likely be sniffing the air all day, just waiting for the yumminess.  And, surprise, the great smelling pot is all for him this time.  Stand aside human!