Cleaning a dogs ears can be one of the more challenging things you can do when it comes to your companion animals health. Drawing on many, many years of experience, I will show you how to do this and do it well.
We're going to go back in time a bit and dust off one of our old videos that has had surprising legs. Excuse the floating title and pay attention to the content, because it's rock solid. In the video, Monique demonstrates how to safely clean a dogs ears and Big Tuna (rest in peace baby girl!) was a good sport.
Before you start, you'll need the following items:
Gauze (3 x 3 or 4 x 4 )
Ear cleaner (alcohol free so it's less irritating) Noah's Ark is a good brand
Swabs - WARNING: only use swabs if you're an experienced ear cleaner and
you know how to use them.
The video is pretty self-explanatory. If you have questions, feel free to contact us or comment on this blog with your questions.
I also recommend that you join our Youtube channel. As time permits, we will be updating the channel with new content.
A note on the video. We've had some very astute keen eyed viewers who have pointed out that the bottle of ear cleaning fluid we're using is expired. We use that bottle and refill it so the date is not accurate.
Unless you've been living in a cave, you have probably seen the headlines regarding a number of fatalities at Petsmart for dogs that have gone in for grooming. You can read one of the stories here:
I spoke to someone involved in the companion animal grooming industry who requested anonymity, to get their take on what was going on. For context, they have worked with animals for over three decades. Their observation was that it was most likely a training issue, i.e. that professional groomers know how to read dogs and how to handle them. I'm sure there are many very professional groomers who work at the big box stores, but if they are inexperienced groomers, that opens the door to not being able to read an animal. Since I was familiar with reading animals through my wife, and I knew her hospital takes great pride in being a fear free clinic, I decided to speak with her.
Monique, as one of the owners of Harmony Animal Hospital, agreed with the training issue angle. She said that she indeed had been keeping up with the coverage, and she said the first tip-off that this was a training issue was that a bulldog that went in for a trim was in for over one hour with three empolyees. She said that most likely the dog did not want to be there and was stressed. And by forcing the dog to participate in something that it clearly did not want to do, they were stressing it out. This would be the opposite of a fear free approach. Another issue is the brachephalic dogs don't handle heat well so the dryers can be a problem. Throw some stress on top and now you have a dog that can't cool off and is starting to have problems breathing.
I can tell you from experience that Mr. Bishi, one of our bulldogs, never had a problem getting his nails trimmed. See video below.
But Lola, our new rescue? She does not like to have her nails trimmed. So you have to be well trained to recognize when a dog doesn't want to be there. And you cannot force them to undergo something that is stressing them.
Subaru has zeroed in on individuals who share their lives with companion animals and for a good reason. What they get are the nuances associated with the breeds - in this case, the bullies. This is exactly what our bullies (we've had four of them) would have done. They would have paid half of their attention to playing, and the other half attempting to do their job. Subaru nailed this.
Creativity is a funny thing. Both Monique and I have been wanting to do our own thing for a long time, we've just had a hard time figuring out what that might be. Both of us have never had an issue with "writers block" - i.e. we have no shortage of ideas, just a shortage of time. When I was laid off, Monique and I decided the time couldn't be better to take some time to work on our business plan. We knew it would involve our love of companion animals and staying active. At the same time, I returned to doing some artwork for the first time in a long time. Ahem. Like thirty years or so.
Long story short, we ended up developing a series of designs and we've been getting feedback from people with companion animals. I, as the artist, figured everyone would think the artwork sucked and the message was solid. Much to my surprise, people really, really like them! With that being said, we're slowly rolling out the first ten designs, then we'll follow up with the next ten. Etc. Yes, we have a lot of designs, but once you start feeding the creative beast, it gets hungrier.
Sit tight because we're just around the corner from releasing our designs.
We are days away from launching what is a new product for the crew at Keep Wagging. We've had many people ask for, and now we're going to deliver, a series of greeting cards for those who share their lives with companion animals.
I can't show them to you until our photographer produces the product shots, but I can tell you about them. The first four cards in the "Life is Short" series focuses on a lesson than our companion animals illustrate almost everyday, whether we notice it or not. "Life Is Short...Play!" will show our companions in all their glory as they break down the 4th wall in our designs. It is a subtle reminder that life is indeed short and we have to remember to play. Take the time to actually enjoy yourself and take a break from work and worrying about things, that in the long run, are irrelevant to the time that we spend here.
The Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation just brought in canine to assist in the physical therapy sessions such as balancing, gripping and strengthening exercises. She's been trained and can execute more than fifty commands. Karmen is a two year old Labrador-Golden Retriever mix. Of note, she is the first canine placement at the Baylor Scotte & White facility. To read or watch more, click HERE.
It seems as if everyday there is an article or new study illustrating the health benefits of sharing your life with a companion animal. Of course, if you've shared your life with another life form, you probably already intuitively understand these. You don't need a study to tell you that something that makes you smile everyday is going to help you to have a better attitude, be healthier and live longer.
"More Evidence That Owning A Dog Is Good For You" is an article that appeared in Time Health and is worth reading. What I found most surprising is that one of the levels that dogs really helped was in making people to be more active.
Okay, this might be a bit of a stretch, but fish are companions to, so I rest my case.
As an artist, I am compelled to share this incredible museum in Cancun. If you are a fan of fish, the ocean, museums or Cancun, I think we got you covered. This is mind blowing in a good way.
Stay creative and Keep Wagging,
We are publishing a common sense guide to pet ownership and one of the things we speak about is how dangerous it is for dogs to be outside during the summer. Specifically, being taken to the beach. If they don't have shade, water and are being monitored for signs of heat stroke, it can quickly turn into a bad situation.
I'm always thrilled when I run across a product that is additive, that can help prevent a bad situation. You've got to check out the K&H Pet Cot Canopy - brilliant! And no, we are not being paid to discuss this product. We just believe its an awesome idea that will most likely keep dogs more comfortable and possibly save a few lives.
Keep your four-legged companions safe and Keep Wagging everyone!
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.