Tips for a Healthy Coat

Use the following tips to help your dog have the healthiest coat on the block!
1. Nutritious Diet. It is important to feed your dog a diet consisting of a minimum of 21 percent protein, 25 percent is ideal for more active dogs. Note: some breeders suggest that feeding your dog a diet that consists of meat, bones, vegetables and fruits is ideal.

2. Regular Vet Check-ups. Take your dog to see the vet regularly. Many dog owners do not take their dog to the vet. Regular check-ups can help prevent common problems later.

3. Decrease Wet Baths. As a caring dog owner, it is instinctive to want to wash your dog
regularly. However, over-bathing can cause your dog to experience hair loss, skin allergies and/or brittle hair. Over-bathing can diminish a dog's natural oils.

4. Brush Regularly. Begin at the base of the dog and raise the hair upward and away from the bottom-most layers. Lightly brush
the hair downward and towards the hair growth.

5. Alleviating Tangles. You can remove your dog’s tangles by spraying and massaging the coat with a dog hair detangler and water mixture. Use the brush to work the tangle from outside of the tangle to inside of it. It takes patience, so always reward your dog with an antler chew :)

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Antlers or Horns?


Have you ever wondered what the difference is between antlers and horns? Horns grow continuously throughout an animals life and are not replaced or regrown if they are damaged or broken off.  The outer surface of horns is composed primarily of keratin, a substance similar to finger nails, and they are nourished by blood vessels within the horn itself.

Antlers are basically just like bone growing from the front of the skull of a deer, elk, or moose. Antlers are usually longer than horns, and have many branches called tines.

Consequently, The next time you marvel at the impressive antlers on a large elk or moose, remember, they took only 3 to 4 months to grow! Pretty quick right? Here's to hoping your dog enjoys his antler dog chews!

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Why Antlers Grow

So, Why Grow Antlers? 

Even though its hard to believe, deer, elk and moose grow antlers for reasons other than antler dog treats (grin). Evidence shows that strategies have evolved in each and every animal population to help sure that the strongest individuals have the greatest opportunity to mate and perpetuate the species. This is very true in the case of antlers. Incidentally, antler growth and size has little to no bearing on the age of the animal, it is more of a indicator of its overall health. Antlers are renewed each and every year which means the stags need to find a source of calcium to supply their antler growth. Since they have a diet primarily of green vegetation, you may wonder where this secret source of calcium originates. The simple answer - from their own bones (mainly their rib cage). Since only the healthiest of males will be able to afford such a huge diversion of their body resources, an impressive set of antlers represents an impressive pedigree for parenthood and thus attracts the most suitable mates.

During the rut in the autumn months, the individuals with the largest antlers (generally matched with the toughest temperament) have an advantage when it comes to competing for their mates. Even though a large pair of antlers means mating priority, it does have some disadvantages. The battle for ultimate supremacy will inevitably use up summer stores of energy, leaving them in poor condition at the onset of the coldest months in the year. Being the most successful stag in the herd just might result in their demise during a long mountain winter.

While only male deer, elk, and moose grow antlers, caribou are very unique in that both the males and females go through an annual process of antler growth. Most commonly, male caribou grow antlers during the summer, use them to compete for mates, and then shed them. Interestingly, once the rut comes to an end, the female caribou grow a short spike antler. This will allow the females, who must divert resources to reproduction during the time of year when food is scarce, to have an advantage over the stags for limited winter food sources.

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When are Antlers Shed?

Most often, mule and white-tail deer loose their antlers during the month of December (moose and caribou usually loose their antlers during the winter months as well). However elk hang-on to their antlers throughout the winter and don't begin shedding them until the spring. Antler hunters search out and find the sheds and then sort them for a variety of uses, one being antler chews for dogs. If the antlers aren't found, the generally don't stay on the ground for long, —the local rodent population will begin eating the antler as a high quality source of calcium and minerals.

While the antlers are impressive to look at, they are even more impressive on an evolutionary scale...more to come!

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Taking care of your "Antler Dog"

In the news recently, we've read a lot about preparing your dog for an emergency situation. Creating a first aid kit could be a great way to protect your pet.

Here are a few suggested items for your dog's first aid kit.

Start with a plastic tote or container (even a large book bag may work). It would also be a great idea to make two kits, one for home and one for the car.

Your Kit Might Include:

  • Batteries
  • Flashlight
  • Cotton balls and/or Q-tip swabs
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Sterile gauze pads and bandages
  • First aid tape
  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Extra leash
  • Styptic powder (helps to stop bleeding)
  • Prescription medications (for you and your pets)
  • Sterile latex gloves
  • Book or notes on pet first aid
  • Mineral oil
  • Buffered aspirin
  • Benadryl
  • A soft blanket
  • Self-activating hot pack
  • Self-activating ice pack
  • Hydrocortisone cream
  • Thermometer
  • Bottle (for water)

There are many more items that might also be essential, even an antler dog chew (smile).  Remember, proper planning brings peace of mind.

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