lovers had cause to rejoice the last week of August, as
the 25th was National Dog Day. This "Howliday"
was started in 2004 to encourage the adoption of dogs in
shelters ó and bring attention to the ridiculously
high numbers of such dogs. If youíve decided youíre
ready for the responsibility of owning and caring for a
dog, consider finding your new companion at your local
shelter or a pure breed rescue organization.
honor of canines, here are some ways you can contribute
to the well-being of all dogs:
your services: Your local shelter would welcome your
gift of time to clean, exercise and play with some dogs.
Animal shelters always are in need of blankets, food,
toys and, of course, funding.
out a senior citizen in your neighborhood: Volunteer to
walk their dog.
perfect dog does not exist: Be prepared to work on some
issues with your dog or puppy. Raising a well-behaved
dog doesnít just happen; it requires you to be
involved and to teach your dog the ways of living in
harmony with humans.
are brilliant: The science is conclusive; dogs can begin
their education at 8 weeks of age, and learn best when
presented with a reward-based education, devoid of
physical punishment and pain.
a safety check at home: Outside, check all fencing for
possible escape options and protruding nails, and repair
as needed. Inside, make sure all toxic plants and
chemicals are out of reach. Your dogs rely on you to
keep them safe.
your dog a thorough once over: Brush their coat to
eliminate mats and remove excess fur. Keep toenails
trimmed for paw comfort, and if dewclaws are present,
keep them short to avoid their growing into the foot
pads. Does your dog have bad breath? This can be
indicative of numerous health problems, including dental
disease. Any new lumps or bumps? Do the ears have a foul
odor? Your dog canít tell you about these health and
wellness issues; itís your job to stay on top of it.
a good relationship with your veterinarian: Just like
people, dogs need regular medical care; semi-yearly
checkups can often result in the early detection of a
to walking your dog on a regular basis: Itís good
exercise for you both. Dogs benefit by getting some
physically and mentally stimulating activity, plus itís
time spent with you.
why you have a dog: Make your dog a part of your family.
Spend time with him and train him so heís a pleasure
to be around. Love him unconditionally, and rejoice in
the love and trust that is returned to you ten-fold.