Dog Breeds: The Labrador Retriever

December 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Catch All, Pet Dogs

Labrador Retriever

Very few dogs are as lovable as a Labrador Retriever. If you are an outdoor person who loves the company of a four-legged companion, then this dog may be for you.

History

Before we begin, know that there are two types of Labrador: the American and the English. The breed as a whole originated in Newfoundland but was taken to England in the 1800s. It worked side by side with fishermen, helping them to bring in their catch. As a service dog, the Labrador Retriever has enjoyed a long history in a variety of services: police dog, watchdog, hunting, disability services, search and rescue, competition and field training. It is one of the oldest and most popular canine pets.

Temperament

This dog is well-balanced both in body proportion and temperament. He is a friendly outgoing dog who loves to be loved by his owners. If you own an American breed, then your dog is tall and lanky. The English version is bred more for hunting and retrieving.

Labradors are great companions who are good with children and adults. They are friendly and love any opportunity to show their masters that they can do the job you give them. They love to swim and play games with their human family.

Intelligent and devoted, they crave the attention of their family. This dog has the potential to become quite destructive without human contact. Be sure that you have enough time to devote to play and recreation each day or you will have a problem. Socializing them well can put an end to this problem.

Care

Labradors have a double coat. the under coat is weather-resistant and soft. It helps to insulate the dog from the cold. The shorter outer coat is water-resistant and very dense. This dog is an average shedder. Regular brushing with a firm brush is needed to keep from forming mats and tangles. Coat colors are usually chocolate, yellow or black. Bathe your dog when needed. Dry shampooing is preferred but only when necessary.

This dog can be prone to a few health issues. Be aware that they can develop hip or elbow dysplasia and eye disorders. Exercise them well to keep their weight in check.

Exercise is also essential to fulfill their migration instinct. Apartment dwellers can own this type of dog as long as they are walked briskly on a daily basis.

Training

This dog is not hard to train. In fact they enjoy it most when you give them a job to do. Labradors also subscribe to the “pack” mentality. This means that they need to know that their human master is the pack leader to feel comfortable. When walking them, be sure that they stay behind you or at your side. When you stop, the dog should heel behind you. This prevents them from bounding out of doors and tackling people.

Labrador Retrievers are loyal, loving, energetic and responsible. If you have the time and space (they get quite large), try this dog.

Dog Breeds: The Weimaraner

November 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Catch All, Pet Dogs

Weimaraner

The dog with the funny name is anything but. Weimaraners are a breed built for spending time with their masters on the hunt. If you like the great outdoors, then this may be the dog for you.

History

This breed got its start in Germany. It has always been a noble hunting dog, chasing rabbits, birds, foxes and the like. Their sleek features make them perfect for running fast and exhibiting stealth when necessary. Over the years, this dog has been bred for hunting under the strict guidance of the German Weimaraner club.

The breed came to America when a sportsman from Rhode Island applied and was accepted into membership at the now exclusive German Weimaraner club. He successfully bred females with a puppy that was sent to him.

Temperament

This dog is loyal, obedient and intelligent when trained properly. As a pup it is important to teach them that you are the leader. This dog loves to run. They are happiest when they are living indoors and outdoors. They can be headstrong and stubborn if cooped up in the house and not given a chance to exercise extensively outdoors.

They work best with children who are well behaved. A Weimaraner will seek out their master or other human family members who are most like it – dominant and in control. Socialization works well with other dogs but not with cats. They are not weak dogs and have no tolerance for weak people. This personality trait has helped them to become excellent watchdogs and family protectors.

Care

Once called the “gray ghost”, its coat is short and close to the body. What makes this dog stand out is the shiny gray color of its coat, ranging from silver gray to a blue gray tint. He has a light eye color which complements his coat. He requires very little grooming beyond a weekly brushing and a monthly bathing to stay clean. As long as enough protein is provided in the diet, his coat will stay shiny.

Regular visits to the vet are recommended. This dog is prone to bloating so feed him a couple of small meals as opposed to one large meal or a full bowl that he can graze on throughout the day. Regular exercise can also help reduce this. Weimaraners are prone to hip dysplasia as well. Otherwise, they are rather healthy.

Training

Dogs need to know who is boss. Their instincts tell them that if there is not a dominant personality in the group then they must step up. To keep this dog from becoming the dominant personality, it is important to establish that the human owner is the leader from the puppy stage.

The Weimaraner responds well to firm training. They do not do well with harshness or yelling. Once they become weary of certain training techniques, they will not respond.

Weimaraners are excellent companions for sportsmen and those who love the outdoors. Read up on these dogs on Animal-World’s Weimaraner page.

Chinese Shar-Pei

March 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Catch All, Pet Dogs

Chinese Shar Pei - Canis lupus familiarisChinese Shar Pei
Canis lupus familiaris

"I am extremely loyal to my family and a highly intelligent dog!"

The Chinese Shar Pei originated from the ancient Chinese Guangdong province and is a

rare breed.

The Chinese Shar-Pei has been around for a very long time, however not much is known about it’s actual history or ancestry. Some thoughts are that it may have descended from the Chow Chow, but they really don’t have that much in common with the Chow Chow. The only real similarity is that they both have dark tongues. The Chinese Shar-Pei is a non-sporting dog breed and looks almost like a completely different dog now than it did originally. It is no longer as wrinkled and has a much sleeker build. The original type is often referred to as the “bone-mouth” Shar-Pei by enthusiasts and the type seen most often today is referred to as the “meat-mouth” Shar-Pei. In the past Shar-Pei’s were often used as fighting dogs as well as farm dogs, but that is uncommon now. Most Shar-Pei’s today are simply pets, showdogs, or sometimes watchdogs… Read More

More about the Chinese Shar Pei!

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