We often recieve questions from our clients. Some of which are displayed below for your reference. Please feel free to contact us should you require futher information.
Why Dogs Eat Fecisse and How to Stop them:
This dog activity is for the most part inexplicable and downright revolting for us humans especially if the dog is the cuddling type.
Unfortunately, as far as dogs are concerned the disgusting factor does not exist and more often than not a dog will not understand why his/her owner is upset at him/her when he/she indulges.
The eating of fecisse will often happen with nursing mothers, they will eat the puppies fecisse in order to keep the nursing area clean.
The name of the behaviour is 'Coprophagia' and most vets, behavourists, and breeders do not have an explanation as to why dogs perform this unpleasant behaviour.
It is believed by some that dogs will commit this act because of digestive problems or because of a nutrient deficiency which prevents them from being able to completely digest the food they eat.
In some cases it is believed that the dog's instinct may drive it to eat the fecisse because of the undigested nutrients in it, which can help to digest its food.
It is important that owners with dogs who display this behaviour to be extra diligent and vigilant in order to immediately react in order to stop the behaviour from continuing.
There has been some success by adding digestive enzymes to a dog's diet in order to help the dog better digest his/her food completely. Also, pancreatic enzymes are available for the digestive system but this is something the owner should first address with his/her veterinarian.
In some other cases feeding high end quality dog food has helped reduce the urge/behaviour. In other cases, it was noticed that by increasing the volume being fed to the dog, it has lessened the desire to indulge into this unwanted behaviour.
The reality of the matter is that this urge or need may have started off as a reaction by the dog for added nutrients. However, as time goes on it will often develop into an Obsessive Compulsive Behaviour which can only be addressed and reversed with incessant, continuous vigilance and correction of the owner.
THE ORIGINAL DOG HOUSE TEAM
WHAT EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT DOG AGGRESSION:
Common Aggression Warning Signs
Dogs generally wear their hearts on their paws. They use their bodies to communicate what they are feeling which can be everything from excitement, anxiousness, playfulness, fear, disappointment, aggression or pain. This is the dog’s universal language.
To determine a dog’s personality you look at his/her tail, eyes, ears, mouth and body posture.
A dominant dog who displays aggressive behavior if challenged will have a stiff-legged stance and walk (robotic-like). This dog will also be leaning slightly forward, his/her lips will be curled, teeth will be exposed and his/her nose and snout will be wrinkled backwards. It is also common in cases of aggression for you to note that the ears will be erect, tail raised and the hair along the back and neck (hackles) will be standing up.
You should however be observant for less obvious signs, such as crouching down and that deep look of fear in the eyes, he/she can also have that please don’t hurt me look on their face.
At other times he/she may just look stiff and walk in a strained hesitant manner or at other times he/she may just stay very still.
PLEASE REMEMBER, a wagging tail does NOT always mean a dog is happy to see you. A wagging tail can also mean he/she is anxious, fearful and this can from time to time translate into a bite to a person or child who approaches a dog too quickly or in an overpowering manner.
Helping Curb Aggression
To prevent aggressive behaviour from developing or snowballing out of control you must teach/show your dog immediately that this type of behaviour is acceptable and will not be tolerated.
The first time he/she growls don’t be afraid to immediately step forward and to get hold of your dog by the collar. Hold him/her firmly with one hand and place him/her in a sit position. Use the other hand to hold the mouth shut, tilt his/her head towards you in order to make direct eye contact and repeat the word ‘NO’ or ‘ENOUGH’ several times in a strong and deep voice in order for him/her to clearly understand that you are displeased with this behaviour. You must hold on to your dog in that position for a good 10 to 15 seconds in order to be sure that the message has been received and understood.
IMPORTANT: When you release your dog do this carefully and in an orderly manner by releasing the hold on mouth/snout first while still holding firmly onto the collar. This is very important because some dogs who feel that they are above being corrected may protest and attempt to lunge towards you and bite.
Another way to help curb aggression is to avoid placing your dog in a potentially inflammatory situation. If you suspect that your dog does not like a particular dog then don’t allow your dog to interact with that dog because you will only be helping to set up your dog to perform an unwanted act/behaviour.
Children & Dogs
If small children make your dog nervous, you should help him build his confidence by making him sit and stay in a public playground (always on a leash and under control) where there are lots of children running around. Only when you feel that he/she is comfortable/stable enough and confident around children and that his/her actions are 100% reliable can you allow him/her to approach children; however, you MUST NEVER leave your dog alone/with children unsupervised.
Handling An AggressiveDog
Just because his/her tail is wagging does not mean a dog is friendly. When you meet a strange dog you must always look for signs of potential aggression first. With a little vigilance and prevention, you can save yourself a lot of pain and/or trouble.
If a dog looks to be aggressive please don’t approach it, because the last thing you want to do is to confront it.
You must always control and correct your own dog. When your dog continuously bumps into you or knocks you over it is not by accident you should immediately put a stop to this behaviour.
Another sign of dominance is mounting/humping, some dogs will react aggressively when pushed off or pulled off their victim, once again you cannot allow your dog to intimidate you and you must use your body language, deep voice, and a firm grip of his collar to make it clear that you are not going to tolerate this behaviour.
PREVENTION IS THE BEST CURE
In summation, aggression for the most part is a learnt behaviour and is often difficult to deal with and control. If you feel you are unable to be firm or consistent enough with your dog, then you MUST immediately seek help from a professional who has the knowledge, ability and skill to help you before the situation snowballs out of control.
NOTICE TO ALL OWNERS
Dogs that have aggression issues MUST always be on a leash while in public places and MUST NEVER be allowed off-leash in the off-leash park because they are a danger to others as well as to themselves.
A DOG WHO HAS BITTEN IN THE PAST CAN AND WILL BITE AGAIN IN THE FUTURE IF GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY.
DO NOT SET UP YOUR DOG TO FAIL.
For help with your Aggressive Dog please contact:
Eddie Catalonia– Co-Manager & Lead Behaviour Modification (Rehab) Specialist
David Shama - Director & Senior Behaviour Specialist
The Benefits Of Structured Daycare
Dogs are pack animals; as such they enjoy group interaction. By exposing a dog to others of his/her species will help him/her develop positive sound social skills which will in turn usually extend to humans and other species as well.
A socially well-adjusted dog will become a solid citizen and a pleasurable experience for his/her family pack.
A further benefit of Structured Daycare is the fact most dogs (specially the younger ones) can become bored if left home alone for extended periods of time. This can often make them develop unwanted destructive behaviours which can easily escalate to the point when an owner may have to consider giving up the dog.
That said, not all Daycare environments are alike. The Original Dog House Structured daycare provides owners with the peace of mind that their dogs will be cared for by professionals. Their facility operates on the principles of comfort, professionalism, hygiene and overall expert management.
Placing a dog in an improper Daycare environment can become potentially dangerous to the wellbeing of the dog, and both emotionally and financially damaging experience to the owner.
I therefore strongly recommend the benefits of Structured Daycare at The Original Dog House for all dogs.
Ruth Weintrop, DVM
LEASIDE ANIMAL CLINIC
1662 Bayview Avenue
Toronto, ON, M4G 3C2