Wanted: Pet Friendly Housing

For most of us, moving without furry family members is unthinkable. Pet-friendly housing can be difficult to find, so we have some great tips for your housing search!

Write Your Pet’s Resume

One of the most effective tools in finding a home that will allow your dog can be a resume for your pooch! Here are some tips on what to include in your pet’s resume:

  • Training information, including obedience classes, crate and house training status and any special accomplishments;

  • Photo and description of your dog;

  • Copies of veterinary records to show you keep a healthy animal;

  • References from previous landlords, neighbours and your vet.

Contact Smaller Rental Companies

Smaller rental companies may be more flexible with their pet policies and willing to discuss your situation. Make sure that you are respectful, aware of the problems they may face renting to irresponsible pet owners, and willing to prove that you are different. Stress the pride you take in caring for your dog, and explain that the same trait carries over into your pride in taking care of your home.

Consider a Rental Home

Some homeowners may be willing to rent to dog owners, and you may be able to share the space with another responsible pet owner. Try posting a detailed wanted ad, including your pet resume and photos of your current lodgings (clean and tidy!)

Be Willing to Put a Little Extra on the Line

Being a pet owner, you can understand how a dog might damage a home. Be willing to pay extra for a damage deposit! Stating that you are willing to do so up front may help you find a place to stay.

Honesty is the Best Policy

It’s easy to lose faith and feel desperate while looking for housing. Do NOT lie to a landlord and try to hide your dog. It can result in legal action being taken against you, or even eviction for you and your dog, leaving you with fewer options than the last time you searched.

Once you succeed in finding housing for you and your furry friend, make sure that you have it in writing that your pet is welcome. Neglecting this key step can lead to eviction as quickly as trying to hide your buddy.

Here are further reading and resources about pet-friendly housing:

DREAM in the City: Dr. Bhupinder Singh, Henderson Group Vet Clinics

Dr. Bhupinder (Tony) Singh of Henderson Group Vet Clinics will be joining DREAM in the City both as a vendor and as a keynote speaker. Dr. Singh will be taking questions from the audience to make the most of your time! Are you curious why your pet requires heartworm prevention every year? Or what tick borne diseases your pet might be susceptible to? Bring your questions on Saturday for a free opportunity for vetting advice!

Since April 2000, Dr. Singh has worked mostly out of Henderson Animal Hospital. He is a part of six veterinary clinics called “Henderson Group” who offer top of the line veterinary services to pet owners across Winnipeg. Henderson, Alpine, Sage Creek, Southglen, Fort Garry and Stonewall Animal Hospitals provide professional and loving health care to all their clients. With six clinics across Winnipeg and one in Stonewall MB, Henderson Group has a clinic you can trust and count on.

ImageDr. Singh grew up on a farm in a village in Northern India, where he was exposed to a variety of animals such as cows, buffaloes, sheep goats, dogs, cats and more. He worked for three years in a mixed animal practice doing preventative and therapeutic medicine.

Dr. Singh’s love for animals also includes his 13 year old cat, Annie. Outside veterinary medicine, he enjoys traveling, meeting people around the globe and is keen on religious studies.

We are thrilled to offer this Q&A session with Dr. Tony SIngh. What a great opportunity to ask your pet’s health care questions and learn more about the importance of basic pet care!

Visit DREAM in the City: Manitoba Canine Expo on Saturday, June 22nd from 11:00am to 4:00pm, located at Four Points Sheraton South (2935 Pembina Hwy), where Dr. Singh will be among five keynote speakers, including Neil Sedlacek and Asmara Polcyn! More information at www.dreamrescue.ca.

Trainer Tuesday: Stress from Moving

 

Every Tuesday we will be working with certified dog trainer Lisa from The Noble Hound, Dog Training and Obedience to answer your dog training questions. If you have a question about your pooch, whether it be leash manners, house training, getting along with other animals or anything in between, email us at info@dreamrescue.ca and we will pick a few questions each week to answer.

Erin Dyck: Hi Lisa! We are moving soon, and so our house is in a bit of chaos (more so than usual). There are boxes everywhere, and the dogs obviously know something is up.

They are a bit touchy; the little guys are growling at everyone as they do when they feel stressed out, and Spencer, our only male, has started marking around the house (just little dribbles; he’s still using the great outdoors for “real” bathroom breaks).

What can I do to minimize the stress on them, other than sticking to their regular routine?

Hi Erin,

Congratulations on buying a new house! Moving can be an exciting adventure, but also very stressful for both humans and animals involved. You are absolutely right in keeping up with the dogs’ daily routine. Right now the moving boxes are stressing your dogs out, so switch their brains and make the boxes and chaos fun and beneficial to them! Boxes can be fun right?! Hide some treats and favorite toys among the moving boxes, making the boxes a bit more exciting and valuable for the dogs. Get the dogs to jump over and/or weave around the boxes and play games around the boxes and chaos, but make sure to reward your dogs with their favorite things (food, treats, toys, affection) for being so brave and happy. The key is to make the boxes fun and rewarding!

Another thing you can do is try to exercise the dogs a little extra. Poop them out so that they don’t have the extra energy to convert into anxiety. A tired dog is a dog that isn’t going to think too much!

As for your dog that is marking, try to re-direct just before you see that leg going up. Make sure he’s never around the moving items and boxes unsupervised. The more he gets to practice this behaviour unsupervised, the more he’s going to do it. You want to catch him before he pees and interrupt him before anything comes out. You can say something like “aaaak” to re-direct his silly ideas.

If your dogs need to go somewhere else (a familiar place like another family member’s home) while the move is taking place that is okay too. I suggest doing this on the actual moving day.

Also, if you have access to the new house already, I would take the dogs there to explore a few times before the final move. This will allow them to develop positive associations to the new house. Let them have fun at the new place – interact and play with the dogs, let them do things they love to do, give them some tasty bones or Kongs stuffed with cheese, meat or peanut butter. Make the new place a great place to be!

In general, it’s natural for your dogs to be a little upset about change. That is normal, but you can help them out by making the situation a bit more enjoyable and fun!

Preventing Dogs Bites

When a dog bites, there are two victims–the person bit and the dog. Dogs who bite may be taken away from their family or put down, even though it is rare that the bite was unprovoked. Any dog may bite for a number of reasons, and it is important to understand these reasons and see the signs in order to prevent injury.

Why do dogs bite?

Dogs don’t always like to share, so it is best not to approach them when they have a toy, food, bone, or something else they really enjoy. If you had a yummy snack and someone sn

atched it away you’d be pretty upset, wouldn’t you? Dogs don’t always know that it’s not OK to say, “No!” with a nip. Caretakers can teach dogs not to be aggressive when people take their belongings away, but if you don’t know the dog very well it is best to be cautious by asking permission to pet the dog, and waiting for him or her to approach you first.

Another reason for a dog to bite is because they are afraid. Not all dogs are comfortable with humans; we are much larger and can be threatening to them. Never approach a dog that you do not know without the owner’s permission. In fact, letting a dog decide when it’s ready to visit with you by allowing them to approach you is the best way to make friends! Do not put out your hand for it to sniff or just start petting it–wait until the animal shows interest in you. A dog may become afraid if it feels crowded or cornered, so stand back and allow them to come to you when they are comfortable. Here is a great example of the right (and wrong) ways to greet a dog.

aggressive dog

Sometimes, a strange large creature (you!) moving quickly may trigger a dog’s prey instinct and it could begin to chase. Instead of trying to get away from the animal just stop and stand still looking towards the dog but avoiding eye contact. It will probably quickly lose interest. If the dog does knock you over curl up in a ball and protect your face and ears while staying quiet and still.

Dogs with health concerns are more likely to bite than others. If a dog is sore and you touch that spot it is liable to snap in pain. Sudden aggression in a dog can be a sign that it has a health problem. Mothers can become very protective of their puppies, so make sure they have a safe place to be and be very careful when handling puppies in front of their mother. Never let children handle puppies around the mother dog!

How to prevent a dog bite

Dogs demonstrate signs before a bite that you should be aware of:

  1. Ears pinned back  and raised hair on their backs;
  2. “Frozen” stance or “whale eyes” (showing the whites of their eyes);
  3. Excessive yawning, licking of the lips and shaking to get rid of the stress.

If a dog is showing these signs, they are warning you to back off. If pushed further, they may resort to biting. Dogs will never bite without showing these signs first, but they can go from 1 to 10 in a matter of seconds, so it is important to be educated on what to look for and how to react. Here is a great depiction of these warning signs.

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It is important for people to raise their dogs in such a way as to reduce the chance of their family pet biting someone. Dogs should visit  with new animals and people frequently in different situations. They should also be taught basic commands and have a good, trusting relationship with their human family.

Older dogs who show aggression or other signs that they may bite someone do not need to be removed from the home and family. A dog trainer can help with behavioural issues in dogs. There are also many great online resources for people who can’t afford a trainer.

YellowRibbon_1If your dog is timid, anxious, unsure of other people/dogs, or if there’s any other reason a person or dog shouldn’t approach your dog (perhaps they’re in training or recovering from surgery), place something yellow on them. The Yellow Dog Project was created to help identify to the general public dogs who need space. This can prevent unwanted incidents from someone accidentally approaching your dog when they shouldn’t.

For more information on preventing dog bites, visit:

If you’re concerned about your dog’s behaviour, contact Lisa at The Noble Hound Dog Training & Obedience. Lisa is a certified dog trainer who offers both group obedience and private training classes.