The Norwich Terrier is one of the smallest working terriers. It’s a spirited, stocky breed, with prick ears and an almost weatherproof coat. Resembling the Norfolk Terrier, the Norwich Terrier has the true spirit of a terrier and is always ready for excitement and adventure: it can work in a pack and moves with great power.
The double coat of the Norwich is comprised of a straight, hard, and wiry outer coat, which fits close to the body and is red, wheaten, black, or tan in color. The hair around its mane, meanwhile, is thick, offering the dog protection.
The expression of the Norwich Terrier is slightly foxy in nature. In fact, this square-proportioned, stocky, sturdy, and spirited dog is among the smallest working terriers. Its small size help it follow fox or vermin through narrow passages. And its large teeth help it dispatch its quarry effectively. The tail is long enough to hold on firmly, so that it is not pulled from a hole.
PERSONALITY AND TEMPERAMENT
As the Norwich is a good hunter, it may chase small animals. This amusing, lively, and independent dog is also a good companion, though challenging at times. It is perfect for those who have a great sense of humor and adventure.
The Norwich Terrier functions better as a house dog with access to the yard, but it can also live outdoors during daytime in temperate or warm climates. Its wiry coat requires occasional weekly combing, and stripping of dead hair three or four times a year.
The Norwich is fond of exploring and running, but off-leash forays should be done only in secure areas. It is also recommended that you allow the dog to run short distances and stretch out its legs every day.
The Norwich Terrier, which has an average lifespan of 13 to 15 years, may suffer from patellar luxation, cataract, cheyletiella mites, and deafness. It is also prone to minor health problems such as allergies and seizures, and major issues like canine hip dysplasia (CHD). To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may recommend hip and knee tests for this breed of dog.
HISTORY AND BACKGROUND
In England, short-legged ratters have always been valued. However, during the 19th century, smaller breeds like the Norfolk and Norwich Terriers (known as CanTabs and Trumpington Terriers at the time) began to emerge; it was even popular for students of Cambridge University to own one of the small ratters.
Near the turn of the 20th century, a Trumpington Terrier named Rags emerged from a stable near Norwich as the sire to numerous dogs, and is often considered the main ancestor to the modern Norwich Terrier.
One of his descendants was introduced to the United States in 1914; the breed became popular in America quickly thereafter. Even today, people refer to the Norwich as "Jones" Terrier, a tribute to the original owner of the first American Norwich Terrier.
In 1936, the American Kennel Club formally recognized the breed. At first the breed included both the drop and prick-eared variety; however, in 1979 the Norfolk Terrier only became associated with the dropped-eared strain.
Even though the Norfolk terrier does not possess the flashing speed of other long-legged terriers, it is a good competitor to have in a show ring. The Norfolk Terrier is also a loyal and sensitive companion to have.
Treating Compulsive Dog Behaviors
On a more serious note......can dogs have OCD? Not really, but they do get compulsive behaviors. What is the difference? Obsessive compulsive behaviors include obsessive thoughts, which don't apply to dogs since we can’t know what they are thinking. Instead, in dogs, these disorders are called compulsive disorders. Here are some other important insights into this curious dog behavior we call compulsive disorders…
What are Compulsive Disorders?
Compulsive disorders (obsessive compulsive disorder, OCD) occur in dogs, although not with great frequency. These behaviors are exaggerations of normal dog behaviors. They are exhibited for longer than expected periods of time, are repeated out of context, and in situations in which they would be considered abnormal.
Common dog behaviors which can be classified as compulsive include spinning, tail chasing, fly biting, light chasing, barking, chewing, staring into space, sucking on a toy, or sucking on a part of the body.
What Causes Compulsive Disorders in Dogs?
Compulsive disorders are caused by conflict, stress and/or frustration. With each stressful event that your dog encounters, there is a release of neurotransmitters involved with the stress response. When a dog is frustrated or stressed, he may start to perform a normal behavior such as holding a toy in his mouth in order to relieve that stress. If holding the toy in his mouth actually reduces the neurotransmitters involved with the stressful event, the dog is likely to perform that behavior again when he is stressed. For some dogs, this behavior becomes ritualized and repetitive because of the intense reward that is associated —reduction of the physiologic feeling of stress or frustration.
Over time, compulsive behaviors progress and get worse. Dogs often start to perform the compulsive behavior with any stressful event, not just the original inciting situation. The behavior can take over the dog’s life replacing normal sleep and feeding habits. It can cause injury to the dog as the impulse to perform the particular behavior becomes stronger and stronger. Dogs that chase their tails often end up mutilating the tail requiring amputation, while dogs that suck on themselves frequently cause skin infections.
Sometimes, what appears to be a compulsive behavior is actually an attention seeking behavior. Even behaviors which start as a frustration related behaviors can be rewarded inadvertently when owners pay attention to the dog when he performs the behavior. For example, if an owner yells No!, that is still regarded by the dog as attention and can perpetuate the behavior.
If you think that your dog exhibits a behavior for your attention, try the following tests. First, videotape your dog when you are not home to see if and when the behavior occurs in your absence. Next, try walking out of the room the next time that your dog performs the behavior. If he does not perform the behavior in your absence, your attention or presence is most probably a part of the problem.
Some dog breeds are predisposed hereditarily to certain compulsive behaviors. For example, Bull Terriers and German Shepherds are commonly seen for tail chasing. Labrador Retrievers exhibit oral compulsive behaviors such as pica, whereby the dog is driven to pick up any object and eat it. Doberman Pinschers are well known for flank sucking, whereby the dog holds and sucks on the skin of the flank for long periods. The best way to know if your dog is predisposed to a certain type of behavior is to speak to your veterinarian about your breed’s genetic predisposition. Then, if possible, speak to the owner of your dog’s parents to learn of their behavior.
How Do You Treat Compulsive Disorders in Dogs?
The first thing to do if you think that your dog has a compulsive disorder is to go to your veterinarian for help. Because medical conditions can cause signs similar to compulsive behaviors in dogs, it is extremely important to rule out medical diseases such as neurologic, endocrine, gastrointestinal, and orthopedic disorders. Your dog should receive a thorough physical examination as well as screening labwork before considering treatment for a compulsive disorder.
If your dog is completely healthy and is free of pain, he may have a compulsive disorder. Compulsive disorders are treated with medications to lower arousal and conflict as well as behavior modification to give the dog an alternate coping strategy outside of the compulsive behavior. Treatment is often prolonged and continues for the life of the dog. If your dog is diagnosed with compulsive disorder you can expect some ups and downs in treatment and in your dog’s behavior. Often chronic cases are referred to a board certified veterinary behaviorist for treatment.
The best thing that you can do for your dog if you suspect a compulsive disorder or if your dog repeatedly displays any behavior, even if it seems harmless now, is to seek help from your veterinarian. When compulsive behaviors are treated early and quickly the prognosis is much better than if they have progressed to a chronic state.
These days we often hear reports about dog foods that can harm our pets. In 2007, over one hundred dog food brands -- some even well known brands -- were recalled due to a tainted ingredient which was imported for China, making some dogs sick and killing others. More recently, salmonella has become a concern for various dog food items.
As responsible dog owners, we need to know how to read complicated dog food labels. Or better yet, feed our dogs with a healthy, well-balanced meal made at home.
So what is a healthy, well-balanced diet for your dog?
Whether you buy canned food from stores or prepare your dog’s meals at home, you have to ensure that the following ingredients are included in your dog's diet: protein, carbohydrates, and fiber.
The most important ingredient is protein. In the past, dogs primarily survived on a diet of meat. This ensured that they consumed large quantities of protein, essential for energy. Fortunately, your dog is not as picky as you are when it comes to the cut of meat or the part of the body the cut comes from. In fact, it is the cuts of meat that we are least likely to eat that are best for dogs and therefore, they cost much less at your local butcher or grocery store. Ask for green tripe (the lining of a cow’s stomach), liver, heart, kidneys; all of these parts are high in concentrated nutrients and form an important piece of your dog’s lifetime development. Eggs and legumes are other sources of protein easily found at the store.
While it is not needed in as large of a quantity as protein, carbohydrate is another ingredient that is essential to a dog's well-being. It is found in high concentrations in cereal grains such as rice, wheat, corn, barley and oats. Carbohydrates can be used in small amounts as fillers, or added in the form of green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, celery, and broccoli, to name a few. Carrots are also beneficial. Along with being a great source of carbohydrates and fiber, they also contain vitamin A and Beta-carotene, which is good for eyesight. Fibers assist in moving waste through the digestive track, improving intestinal health. Easily digestible, or soluble, carbohydrates are excellent sources of fiber. This category is mainly comprised of fruits that are part of your diet, such as apples, pears, and oranges (but ask your vet which fruit are okay for your dog; some fruits are poisonous for dogs).
When looking for food products at the pet store, purchase those stamped by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (or AAFCO). While it is not foolproof, your closest guarantee to a safe food product is one that has been made in compliance with the AAFCO's strict guidelines for production and labeling.
What should you avoid?
Because some dogs have allergic reactions to certain food ingredients, just as we do, it would be impractical to try to list all the things that you must avoid. There is, however, a basic list of the foods that should not be given to dogs.
Hyperthyroidism is extremely rare in dogs. It is typically associated with aggressive thyroid tumors that produce large amounts of thyroid hormone. The only other known cause is the ingestion of thyroid hormone from other sources. In each of the last three years, a research study has documented hyperthyroidism in dogs fed raw diets or treats.
What is Hyperthyroidism?
All animals have thyroid glands. The glands are located next to the trachea (wind pipe) just below the larynx (voice box). These glands secrete thyroid hormone. The amount of thyroid hormone in the blood regulates body metabolism. Decreased levels slow metabolism and increased levels speed up metabolism. Heart rate, body temperature, chemical reactions, food utilization, or storage are all dependent on the level of thyroid hormone in the bloodstream.
Animals with hyperthyroidism secrete excess hormone, causing a constant state of metabolic hyperactivity. They often lose weight, have fast heart rates, and ravenous appetites. Side effects also include increased water consumption, increased urination, and vomiting. Long term, this hyper metabolic state can result in heart and kidney failure.
Cat owners are all too familiar with this condition. Over-active, microscopic benign tumors in the thyroid glands are extremely common in older cats. The condition is so common that a veterinary expert in feline hyperthyroidism once quipped, “It seems that every cat is destined to develop hyperthyroidism at some point in its life.”
What is the Cause of Hyperthyroidism in Dogs Fed Raw Food?
Active thyroid hormone secreting tissue is not restricted to the thyroid gland. Research has shown that small, usually microscopic, amounts of active thyroid tissue can be found along the entire trachea, even into the chest. Dogs fed raw animals necks absorb thyroid hormone from attached or residual thyroid gland or thyroid active tissue in the neck. The amount is sufficient to cause symptoms of hyperthyroidism.
In the 2012 and 2013 studies, the diets of the sick dogs were confirmed to have included raw neck tissue or thyroid gland contamination of raw products from a slaughtering plant. The new 2014 study (unpublished) confirmed beef necks and thyroid tissue in raw dog treats. All of the dogs in the studies had elevated thyroid hormone levels without evidence of thyroid tumors. Dietary change resulted in a return to normal blood thyroid levels and relief from the symptoms, suggesting that the raw thyroid tissue was the underlying cause.
Why Hyperthyroidism in Dogs May Become More Common
The popularity of real food raw diets for dogs is becoming extremely popular. Major ingredients in many of these diets are “meaty bones.” Meaty bones are basically the frame (neck, back, and pelvis) of the chicken or small livestock (rabbits), and necks of large livestock after the majority of the choice muscle has been removed. Chicken necks are a very commonly used meaty bone. The combination of residual meat, ligament, tendon. and bone make them attractive for those choosing to feed a diet that more closely mimics the diet of the wild ancestor of the dog. The high bone content is thought to add adequate calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium, and the necks contribute fat and a small amount of protein to the rest of the diet.
These studies suggest that thyroid tissue contamination of raw animal necks or treats containing neck and thyroid tissue can cause hyperthyroidism in dogs. With larger numbers of dogs being fed raw necks we may see more dogs with this condition.
Fortunately, the condition is reversible once thyroid tissue is removed from the diet. Those choosing to feed a raw diet containing meaty bones may want to avoid using necks as part of the diet. Evaluation of blood thyroid hormone levels in dogs on these diets would also be advisable.
Here is an oddity in equestrian history that fits with the summertime mood. In the late 1800s, a traveling Wild West show run by a man named “Doc” Carver featured a diving horse act where a horse ran off an embankment or pier into a body of water.
There are a few different variations of how Carver came to this diving horse idea. Other parts of Carver’s biography are fuzzy as well, but include time spent training as a sharp shooter and taking part in the famous Buffalo Bill Wild West show. The most widely cited account of Carver’s equestrian ingenuity details how he jumped a horse off either an embankment or bridge in Nebraska into the river below. Soon, Carver’s business partner, Al Floyd Carver, built a mobile ramp and tower and the diving horse traveling show was born.
In an era rich with entertainment in the form of traveling sideshows and circuses, the diving horses were a big hit. Unique to be sure, these shows offered paying customers a small piece of everything you could want in entertainment: danger, suspense, and the appearance of the human-animal bond. In the early 1900s, Carver’s show became a permanent fixture at Atlantic City’s Steel Pier.
If this story sounds a little familiar to some of you, it might be because of a Disney film called Wild Hearts Can’t be Broken, released in 1991. This film chronicles the true story of a young girl named Sonora Webster, who was a rider in Carver’s show. Tragically, in 1931, Sonora was blinded after an accident on the pier caused her horse to dive unexpectedly off-balance. Sonora hit the water with her eyes open and the force of the impact detached her retinas. A story of perseverance, Sonora continued to dive blind in the act for another eleven years and married Carver’s business partner.
Carver’s act continued at the Steel Pier until the 1970s — a very respectable tenure for something born in the previous century. Pressure mounting from various animal welfare groups finally closed the show. Atlantic City attempted to resurrect the show again at Steel Pier a few years ago, but it was again halted on grounds of animal welfare.
Although Sonora always maintained their horses were treated humanely, one must wonder: Is it in a horse’s nature to willingly climb atop a forty foot structure and then leap into water below? Granted, it is not in a horse’s nature to allow a human on its back either, and yet we are able to quite easily train a horse to accept that. Is a horse trainable enough to willingly dive?
Accusations arose during the show’s timeline that cattle prods and other methods of force were used to force the horses up the ramp and then off the pier. However, even if these aren’t true, there were horses that died over the course of the show’s lifetime, either from injuries sustained during a last-minute panic prior to jumping into the water, or to drowning.
Before setting off on that island getaway or action-packed tour, there’s still one big question that all pet parents must consider before saying bon voyage: Who’ll watch your pets?
As the pet population and spending continues to grow, dog owners have more options for vacation care than ever. According to the American Pet Products Association, U.S. pet industry spending reached around $51 billion in 2011. The number of insured pet-sitter business is already at 10K nationally, and from 2010 to 2020 the number of animal care and service workers is expected to grow by 23%. So if your go-to move is usually traditional kennel boarding, it may be time to consider another option — in-home boarding.
WHAT IS IN-HOME PET BOARDING?In-home boarding works like this: Pet owners search for a registered home nearby, namely through national website services catering to this need. It’s 24-hour care in the hands of trusted professional for an affordable rate.
Most in-home boarding sites are free to browse, and they perform background checks on canine hosts to ensure they are qualified to watch your dog. When a pet owner finds a sitter or host that’s a match, they work with the service to connect with sitter and ensure that the potential dog watcher is a good fit for Fido, based on location, personality and daily routine. Payment is worked out through the service, and the pet parent brings the pooch over to the host’s house before they leave for vacation.
In-home pet boarding services offer dogs individual attention, regular walks, trips to the park, and the opportunity to socialize with other dogs in the household. They can also keep up with your pet’s regular routine — including eating schedules, bathroom breaks, grooming necessities, and daily exercise requirements — so your pooch has less anxiety while you’re away. If your pup isn’t the easiest to handle, you can even opt for in-home pet boarding with a professional trainer!
A number of national websites, such as DogVacay.com and Sleepover Rover, are culling perfect environments for pet owners to search for in-home pet sitters. DogVacay.com, founded by Aaron Hirschhorn and his wife, was born after the two experienced firsthand the stresses of finding trustworthy sitters at affordable rates for their two dogs. “DogVacay’s sitters offer in-home care, and most charge less than $25 per night,” says co-founder and CEO Hirschhorn. Kennels, he notes, can be anywhere from $35-$70 per night, depending on location.
While price is certainly a consideration, how your dog will be cared for while you’re away is paramount. One DogVacay online reviewer (out of thousands of satisfied customers), Ethan C., said that his dogs “...who usually hate boarding of any kind (and make us feel horribly guilty about leaving them) came back exhausted from their play and walks, and looked at us as though we'd taken them away from a romping good time.”
Hirschhorn adds that DogVacay isn’t just about connecting owners and sitters, but also ensuring quality through pet sitter reference checks, reviews, phone interviews, online training, and insurance policies (for both pet sitters and pooches). “During the pet owners’ time away, we also provide them with a daily email updates that include a picture of their dog,” says Hirschhorn. The in-home dog boarding service also provides a no cost, no obligation meet and greet for the pet and potential sitter to see if it will be a good fit.
QUESTIONS AND CONSIDERATIONS ABOUT IN-HOME BOARDING PET SITTERS
When deciding upon the in-home boarding spot right for your dog, Hirschhorn says some of the most important considerations are getting a feel for the environment and a sense of how your dog and the sitter get along. Keep these questions and consideration in mind when meeting with any potential pet sitter:
1. Is the pet sitter’s home clean and safe? Before you head out to tropical paradise, head over to the facility that you’re considering to confirm your pet will be placed in a pet friendly, secure home.
2. Are the pet-watchers/homeowners responsible and reliable? The same way that you would consider whether or not a family member or friend could do the job of watching your pet, do your due diligence on the in-home boarding homeowners. Read other customer reviews, and ask specific questions about their pet experience and daily routine.
3. Are there other pets in the house? If so, how many, and what types? If your dog loves to play with other dogs, consider whether this household is home to small pets or large dogs which may frighten your pet. Also consider if there are any other animals, such as cats, present in the household.
4. What’s the daily routine? If your pooch needs his pill at a certain time of day, or likes to go on long walks in the morning, be sure that the in-home boarding care will be accommodating. Consider feeding, medication, physical needs and hygienic needs (baths or teeth-brushing) when you ask about the schedule.
5. Provide full disclosure. In addition to interviewing the in-home dog sitter, providing an out-of-town contact number and asking about the nearest animal hospital, it’s a pet parent’s job to be open and transparent about a pet’s needs, says Hirschhorn. Share as much info about your pet’s personality, needs and medical history as possible to ensure your pet has a fabulous time on his vacation!
When you're feeling under the weather, you might find that the perfect thing for treating what ails you is something you already have in the kitchen. Did you know that you can treat your ailing dog with some simple home remedies too? Below you will find seven great natural remedies for making your dog happy and healthy again.
Vitamin E is good for preventing those pesky age lines on your face, and it's also great for your dog's dry skin. You can give your pup a doggy massage by applying vitamin E oil directly to the skin, a soaking bath with vitamin E added to the water, or you can go all "Hollywood" and pop your dog a pill (of vitamin E, that is).
If you give the vitamin orally, check with your vet on the recommended dosage for your specific dog breed.
Flavorless electrolyte-replacing liquids, such as sports waters or pediatric drinks, not only help athletes to replenish fluids, and babies to rehydrate after an illness, they can also supply your sick pooch's body with much needed fluids after a bout of diarrhea or vomiting.
Consult your veterinarian as to the appropriate dosage amounts when giving these types of liquids to your dog.
Deliciously plain yogurt is a healthy treat for your dog. Just as with humans, the live acidophilus in the yogurt keeps the good bacteria in your dog's intestines in balance, so that bad bacteria is swiftly knocked out. If your dog is on antibiotics, a little yogurt will also help keep yeast infections at bay (a common side-effect of antibiotic treatment). You can also give your dog acidophilus pills -- wrapping the pills in bacon is strictly optional.
Puppies are especially prone to yeast infections, so a little plain yogurt as a snack (or even dessert) can help keep things in balance; especially useful while the intestinal system is building immunities.
Chamomile tea uses the natural disinfecting effects of the chamomile plant to settle upset doggy tummies. It is recommended for colic, gas, and anxiety. It can also alleviate minor skin irritations. Just chill in the fridge and spray onto the affected area on the dog's raw skin. Your dog should feel an immediate soothing effect as the chilled tea kills the yeast and/or bacteria on the skin. A warm (not hot) tea bag can also be used for soothing infected or irritated eyes.
An itchy dog can be quite an annoyance, especially as it goes around scratching itself on any piece of furniture it can reach. Forget the backscratcher. Finely ground oatmeal is a time-honored remedy for irritated skin. You can use baby oatmeal cereal or grind it yourself in a food processor. Stir the oatmeal into a bath of warm water and let your dog soak in the healing goodness. Your dog will thank you, trust us. Dogs with skin allergies, infections, and other diseases which cause itchiness have been shown to gain immediate relief with this approach, too.
Dogs can be like kids at times, and as such they are bound to suffer from wounds and the occasional unexplained swelling. Try treating these ailments with Epsom salt soaks and heat packs next time. A bath consisting of Epsom salt and warm water can help reduce the swelling and the healing time, especially when combined with prescribed antibiotics and veterinary supervision.
If soaking your dog in an Epsom salt bath twice a day for five minutes isn't convenient or practical, a homemade heat pack using a clean towel drenched in the same warm-water solution can be applied to wounds for the same effect.
Does your dog have fleas? Never fear. Before turning to the big guns, try some borax powder. The standard stuff at the store will work wonders on fleas by poking holes in their crunchy insect exoskeletons. A good way to make sure those parasitic suckers get annihilated is to sprinkle the borax on your floor, and then sweep or vacuum up the excess. The invisible borax crystals left behind will kill the fleas and you won't even have to lift a finger. It's inexpensive and practically non-toxic compared to an appointment with the exterminator.
For the dog, try a simple solution of lemon water. Fleas are repelled by citrus, so this can work both as a flea preventive, and for making your dog smell clean and refreshing. A useful solution can be made by pouring boiled water over lemons and allowing them to steep over night. This solution can then be applied all over your dog's skin using a fresh spray bottle. And, the tried and true Brewer's yeast method cannot be left out. Brewer's yeast can be given as part of a regular diet in powdered form, sprinkled over the dog food, or in tablet form, perhaps wrapped in a small slice of bacon or cheese.
Home (or holistic) remedies aren't just for tree huggers anymore. It's important to take care of your dog from day to day, not just when it's feeling a little under the weather, and the best way to maintain the best health is often the most natural way. But most of all, it'll help keeping your "baby" from crying like a hound dog.
Clawing/scratching is one of those undesirable behaviors that can get a cat in trouble, especially when the item the cat decides to shred is the owner’s expensive couch or carpeting. Often, this behavior results in a frustrated owner and the cat ends up being tossed outdoors or even surrendered to the local shelter. However, that doesn’t need to be the case.
Cat owners do need to realize that, even though the behavior may be irritating to us, it’s a perfectly normal behavior from the cat’s perspective. Cats claw for many different reasons. They mark their territory that way, using both visual and chemical messages. They also scratch to sharpen their claws, helping to keep those claws in tip-top condition. Clawing is used a means of stretching muscles to keep them healthy and supple as well.
Scratching is a basic need for all cats. Your cat is not clawing your furniture out of spite or vindictiveness. He (or she, as the case may be) is clawing because he’s a cat. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to discourage your cat from using your furniture as a scratching post. Here are some tips.
Once your cat is regularly using the alternative scratching surface, you can slowly move it (a short distance at a time) to a more acceptable location, if desired. You can also remove the runner or whatever deterrent was used to make the original area unattractive to your cat.
Households with more than one cat will require a separate scratching area for each cat. Scratching surfaces are an essential basic need for the feline and your cat may not want to share.
There may be additional help in the future in the form of a pheromone product that simulates the pheromone released from glands in your cat’s feet (called the plantar pad glands) during the clawing process. These pheromones are used as a chemical marker and serve as a means for your cat to tell the world that your home is his territory. A recent study funded by a grant from the Winn Feline Foundation looked at a synthetic version of this pheromone (named the feline interdigital semiochemical, or FIS) and found that “the presence of FIS can influence and prime the location for this important feline behavior (scratching). It also gives specific, long lasting information to other cats. Using the semiochemical approach can modify the choice of areas selected spontaneously by cats. In the future, it could be used as a preventative measure for a cat arriving at a new home or control or change inappropriate scratching behavior.”
The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a large, muscular hunting dog. Originally bred by European Boers for lion-hunting, protection, and companionship, it is also known as the African Lion Hound.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback's distinctive feature is its well-defined ridge, which begins at the shoulders, with two identical whorls and tapers to a protrusion of the hipbones.
The Ridgeback has a slightly long body and combines attributes of endurance, speed, and power. Its athletic build and long, efficient strides enables it to control injured game easily. The dog's short and shiny wheaten coat, meanwhile, helps the dog adapt to hot climates.
PERSONALITY AND TEMPERAMENT
Although reserved with strangers, the Ridgeback mixes well with other dogs and is friendly with cats it has grown up with.
Among hounds, this breed is revered for its versatility as a faithful guardian and keen hunter. The dog is extremely protective of its human family and gentle with kids; however, it may be too unrestrained for small children. Be aware that some male Ridgebacks are known to be too domineering and strong-willed, even fighting other dogs into submission.
As a house pet, it is a wonderful family member. The Ridgeback prefers to sleep indoors, spending its days both out in the yard and indoors. The Ridgeback is a good hiking and jogging companion. Fond of running, the Ridgeback needs physical and mental exercise daily, to prevent boredom setting in. Coat care for the dog is minimal, requiring occasional brushing to get rid of dead hair.
The Rhodesian Ridgeback, which has an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years, does not suffer from any serious health conditions. However, it may be prone to minor issues such as elbow dysplasia, canine hip dysplasia (CHD), and hypothyroidism. Deafness and dermoid sinus are also occasionally seen in the breed. To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may recommend hip, thyroid, elbow, and dermoid sinus tests for the dog.
HISTORY AND BACKGROUND
Noted as a popular hound today for its qualities of hunting, protecting, and companionship, the Rhodesian Ridgeback dates back to the 16th and 17th centuries, when European Boers came to South Africa. Along with them, they brought breeds such as the Great Dane, Mastiff, Staghound, Bloodhound, Pointer, Greyhound, and others. The settlers required a dog that could tolerate extreme temperatures, a limited supply of water, and even withstand rough bushes, while functioning as a hunting and guard dog.
They eventually crossed Hottentot tribal and native hunting breeds with European breeds in order to produce a desirable dog. This new breed hunted by using scent and sight and was also a loyal protector of the family.
Many of these dogs were transported to Rhodesia in the 1870s to hunt lions and track them. These successful "lion dogs" became very popular, and their distinctive ridge became their symbol of quality.
There were so many varieties of ridged "Lion Dogs" in Rhodesia by the 1920s, that a meeting was conducted to decide the best qualities of the breed and form a breed standard.
In the 1930s, the breed appeared in England and soon thereafter in the United States. However, it took nearly 20 years for the breed to strike the fancy of dog lovers. The Rhodesian Ridgeback was officially recognized as a sighthound in the 1980s, eventually eligible to participate in sighthound field trials.
The Maltese is the quintessential lap dog. It is extremely lovable and playful, and enjoys nothing more than to be pampered and praised by its owner. The breed is easily distinguished by its straight and long white coat, making it appear like it has just stepped out of a doggie hair salon.
The Maltese is a very small dog that has a compact and square body. It is entirely covered with silky, long, flat and white hair that, if allowed to grow to full length, hangs nearly to the ground. Its expression is both alert and gentle. As a vigorous dog, the Maltese moves with a smooth, lively, and flowing gait; it may even appear as the dog is actually floating on the ground when it is trotting.
Even though the Maltese dog is known for its unusual coat, other features like the facial expression, the body structure, and overall carriage are equally important.
PERSONALITY AND TEMPERAMENT
Do not let the innocent appearance of the Maltese fool you, it is feisty, bold, and not afraid to challenge larger dogs. Also, do not over-coddle these adorable creatures, as it can actually do them more harm than good.
If the Maltese is allowed to become the pack leader, it may develop behavior disorders and become anxious and stressful. This may also lead to unnecessary barking and snapping at stranger and children. So love a Maltese all you want, just make sure to establish a firm and clear chain of command.
The exercise needs of the Maltese may be met with a romp in the courtyard, a short leash-led walk, or vigorous indoor games. Its coat, which may be clipped for easier maintenance, requires combing on alternate days. The Maltese is generally considered an unsuitable outdoor dog.
The Maltese, which has a lifespan of 12 to 14 years, may suffer from deafness, shaker syndrome, and dental problems. It is also prone to minor health issues like patellar luxation, hydrocephalus, open fontanel, hypoglycemia, distichiasis, entropion, hypothyroidism, and portacaval shunt. To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may run knee, eye, and thyroid exams on this breed of dog.
HISTORY AND BACKGROUND
Reputed as one of the oldest dog breeds and the most ancient European toy breed, the Maltese has a curious history. Phoenician sailors visiting the island of Malta for trading around 1500 B.C. are credited for discovering the first Maltese dogs. From the 5th century onwards, dogs resembling the Maltese were found in Greek art. There is also evidence that the Greeks erected tombs to honor the Maltese.
The Maltese was introduced to England in the early 1300s, where upper-class ladies took a fancy to them for their diminutive size. However, it was not until the 1877 Westminster Kennel Club dog show that the first Maltese was exhibited in the United States. The American Kennel Club accepted the Maltese for registration in 1888. Since then, the Maltese has steadily grown in popularity and is one of the most coveted toy breeds today.
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