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5 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day with Your Dog


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Earth Day is a reminder to respect and care for the planet that provides us with water, air and so much more. Since both humans and our furry friends are important parts of this amazing world, we can all get involved in giving thanks to Mother Earth. Read on for a few simple ways to celebrate Earth Day with your dog.

1. Follow the 3 “R’s.”
“Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” We hear these three words repeated constantly, but do we really understand what they mean, or how they relate to your dog? Reducing means cutting down the amount of waste we produce. You can reduce the waste that comes with owning a dog by choosing toys and products with less packaging, or thinking twice before purchasing Fido’s fifth fancy collar. Reusing is giving use to an old, unwanted item instead of throwing it out. You can reuse your dog’s old bedding, for example, by donating it to a local shelter. Finally, you can recycle unwanted pet items by placing them in the appropriate recycling bin so they can be turned into new items for consumption. Consider buying recycled items whenever possible.

2. Take to the trails.
What better way to enjoy the Earth in all its beauty than to go enjoy nature? Try a new hiking trail or a walk in the park, where your pooch can discover new sights and smells. You’ll both get the exercise you need to stay healthy and fit while gaining a deeper appreciation for your natural surroundings.

3. Pick up after your pup.
Doggy doo-doo isn’t just a nuisance to your neighbors; it’s also harmful to the planet. Dog feces contain millions of bacteria and can often harbor harmful parasites such as giardia and salmonella, which leach into our oceans and sewer systems. Prevent the spread of diseases by picking up after your pup—the smart way. Instead of using wasteful plastic bags that end up in landfills, opt for biodegradable doggy bags like these. Better yet, reduce your plastic bag consumption completely by using a pooper scooper or bucket.

4. Change Fido’s diet.
Both your pup and the planet can benefit from less consumption of meat. By giving your dog less meat and more veggies, you will be providing him a healthy, vitamin-rich feeding option while also cutting down the waste and energy that goes into producing meat. Consult with your veterinarian to see what kind of diet is appropriate for your dog.

5. Plant a dog-friendly garden.
A classic way to celebrate Earth Day is to plant trees. You can plant trees and other plants in your backyard that will help you, your pup and the planet thrive. Some tips for planting a dog-friendly garden include designating a spot for digging, avoiding plants that may be poisonous to your dog and providing your dog space to roam and relax.

We hope that you and your pup use our above tips to have a fun and fulfilling Earth Day. Remember, every day is Earth Day, so always be mindful of how the choices you make with your pup affect the planet!

Tips to Curb a Dog that Digs


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He’s done it again! Fido’s dug a hole right in the middle of your freshly-pruned row of Petunias. Digging can be one of the most frustrating doggy behaviors, as well as one of the hardest to stop. Below are some pointers to keep your dog’s destructive habit from digging a hole into your brain.

Step 1: Identify the Causes

There are many possible causes of a dog’s digging that go beyond their simple enjoyment of the act. Once you identify the reason (or reasons) for your dog’s digging, it will be much easier to come up with a solution. A few of the fascinating causes for digging include:

• Entertainment—If you’ve seen the wide, gleaming smile of a dog digging a hole in the backyard, you know he has no qualms about tearing apart your garden; digging is just plain fun.
• Temperature Control—In the hot summer months, your dog might find a hole in the ground the perfect spot to cool down. Similarly, getting into a hole he’s dug can offer him more warmth when it’s cold out than staying above ground.
• Escape—High fences or gates aren’t always enough to keep a rebellious dog with a taste for wanderlust contained. Your dog may be trying to get away, at least for a little while.
• Hormones—Both male and female dogs may try to dig their way out of the yard in order to sniff out a mate.
• Burying Objects—Dogs dig to save food, bones and other prized possessions for later while keeping them hidden away from others.
• Natural Instinct—Some dog breeds like to dig more than others; it’s just in their nature. Thick-coated dogs such as Siberian Huskies and Chow Chows might dig to escape the heat, while earth dogs such as Terriers and Dachshunds were bred to do the very thing that gets under your skin—or lawn.

Step 2: Breaking the Habit

While there are no foolproof solutions to a dog’s digging, there are measures you can take to lessen the behavior. Depending on the cause for the digging, the appropriate solution may vary.

• Keep Him Busy—If your dog resorts to digging as a form of entertainment, he may not be getting the proper attention at home. Prevent boredom in your pup by scheduling daily playtime and exercise.
• Keep It Cool—If your dog is digging because he is hot or because of physical discomfort or distress, make sure you pay attention to him and provide him with what he needs to stay cool and comfortable.
• Get Him “Fixed”—Spaying or neutering makes a dog less likely to wander in search of a mate. Coupled with regular exercise, this can solve escapism, as well as curb hormonal instincts.
• Limit Treats—To get your dog to stop burying his food, don’t give him more than he will finish. If you see him trying to stash a treat for later, quickly take it out of his mouth before he has a chance to bury it. If he reacts aggressively to this gesture, it’s a sign your dog needs immediate professional help.
• Compromise—There’s not much you can do to stop a dog from digging if it’s his natural-born instinct. If he’s digging for temperature control, you can trim his fur in the summer or give him a sweater in the winter. But what if he’s a Terrier with digging in his blood? In this case, it may be best to designate a single spot in the yard where he can dig, rather than him digging holes all over the place.

Step 3: Reward, Reward, Reward

When training your dog, one of the best ways to get your desired outcome is to reward positive behavior. This is called positive reinforcement, and is often more effective than punishment. The same goes for training your dog to stop digging. Instead of scolding your dog for digging, reward him with praise and treats for obeying commands, reacting calmly or digging in the right spot. Hopefully, both you and Fido will dig the end result.