Updated October 2019
The condition of your dog's coat is a good indicator of his or her health. Dog coat problems can be signs of an allergy, parasitic infection, or other serious underlying health condition. In this article we break down everything you need to know about dog coat health: what a healthy dog coat should look and feel like, signs and potential factors behind an unhealthy dog coat, and how to best promote a healthy dog coat in your four-legged best friend.
Although dog coats vary widely in type and texture across dog breeds, the characteristics of a healthy dog coat are generally the same across every pup. A healthy dog coat is shiny and smooth. The fur or hair should be soft and glossy without being greasy.
Signs of an unhealthy dog coat include dog hair or fur that grows increasingly dull, faded, and limp. The coat may become increasingly dry, brittle, and coarse. The changes in your dog's coat may not happen overnight but occur over time. Old age aside, such symptoms can be a sign of malnutrition, allergy, illness, parasites, or other health problems. For these reasons, it is important to contact your vet as soon as you notice any changes in coat health.
"You are what you eat" holds true for humans and dogs alike. Genetics aside, diet is the #1 external factor affecting dog coat health.
A balanced diet rich in protein, essential fatty acids (omega-3s, omega-6s), and carbohydrates is key for dog skin and coat health. If you already use a high quality dog food, consider these add-ons:
If your dog has excessive shedding, sudden or unusual hair loss (i.e. bald spots), or shows other signs of ailing coat health, please arrange a wellness appointment with your veterinarian.
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Most dogs detest having their teeth brushed. Many pups won't even let their owners come near them with a doggy toothbrush! Brushing your dog's teeth is obviously not always easy or enjoyable. It is also very easy to forget to brush your pup's teeth on a daily basis. Fortunately, one very reputable company, BARK, came up with a way to make doggy dental health much easier for us pet parents.
We discovered BARK Bright’s enzyme-powered monthly doggy dental kit last year and have been fans ever since. BARK Bright's chicken-flavored dog toothpaste and dog sticks turbocharge the enzymes in dogs' mouths to keep their teeth clean and breath fresh. They are incredibly simple and effective, and the kits are conveniently shipped straight to your door.
Is BARK Bright right for your pup? In this DJANGO Dog Blog article, we provide an in-depth overview and review of BARK Bright. It is based on our own experience getting the dog teeth cleaning kit for our sausage dog Django.
Dr. Ian Billinghurst is the father of the raw dog food diet and the founder of the BARF ('Biologically Appropriate Raw Food' or 'Bones and Raw Food') diet. In late 1993, he wrote Give Your Dog a Bone. The worldwide best seller is one of the most important books on dog nutrition ever written. It discussed why raw, whole food is best for your dog.
As an Australian veterinary surgeon with 50 years of experience, Dr. Billinghurst has one consistent message: raw-fed dogs are healthier than their kibble-fed counterparts.
We caught up with the long-time raw food champion and international lecturer to discuss the controversial raw dog food diet. We also dig into how gray wolves evolved into modern dogs, and we weigh the benefits of the raw dog food diet against safety risks like foodborne pathogens. Finally, we chew over how to solve the companion dog population boom and why so many veterinarians have raw emotions about raw pet food.
When Mike and I (Steph) moved into our new home earlier this year, we reveled in the spacious layout. Compared to our previous 650 square foot apartment in New York City, our modest new home felt like a palace. We soon realized, however, we had a lot of furnishing to do. Our hardwood floors, in particular, needed immediate protection. We have a boisterous 3-year old toddler, a long-haired dachshund, and a newborn. The last thing we wanted was for our toddler's toys, our baby's spit ups, and our pup's nails to destroy our new hardwood floors.
While researching the best rugs for families with kids and pets, Mike and I (Steph) came across Tumble. Tumble offers machine washable and spill-proof area rugs with modern patterns and colors. Mike and I ordered 3 rugs for our home—a kitchen runner and two area rugs—and we never looked back.
The following is an honest review and in-depth overview of Tumble rugs based on our family's personal experience using several of the rugs in our home.