How to help your chi cope with the heat

Small dogs find it more difficult than larger dogs to cool themselves down. This week has been the hottest since we got Elvis in February, so I wanted to share how we dealt with it, to help others.

Elvis loves going for walks in dry weather. Earlier this week I took him for a ten minute walk in the sunshine then sat on our usual bench for a while. He was panting with his tongue out, and looking at me. He never pants, so I knew I had to take him home for water. When we got home, he didn’t drink very much, so I got a small bowl of water and brought that over to the sofa with me. He drank lots of that, and soon got back to his happy self. All week, we’ve kept a drink for Elvis on the coffee table, and offer it to him regularly. That’s in addition to his usual water bowl in the kitchen. Continue reading “How to help your chi cope with the heat”

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Dog health – vet treatments

As well as feeding and exercising your dog, there are a few things that you should keep in mind to keep him healthy.

 

Registering with a vet

A few days after you bring your new pooch home, it’s a good idea to register with a local vet. A lot of vets offer a loyalty pet care program, which involves paying a certain amount a month which includes regular treatments. Our vet charges ยฃ12 per month. It works out cheaper than paying as you go. The plan includes a health check and annual vaccination, a six month health check, and a year’s supply of flea and worm control.ย  Continue reading “Dog health – vet treatments”

What I feed my chihuahua puppy – an updateย 

We’ve had Elvis for seven weeks! It seems like ages ago since that traumatic first night, and we can’t remember what it was like not having him snuggling with us on the sofa. We’re absolutely loving having our cute puppy living with us.

After reading back my earlier post about his fussy eating, and reading up on nutrition, we decided to give raw food another go. Natural Instinct had kindly sent us five weeks worth of puppy food, so we had plenty in the freezer.

Raw Food

We’ve learned that if there’s something better being offered, like an omelette or cheese, then Elvis prefers that. At first, he turned up his nose at the raw food, knowing that we’d worry that he hadn’t eaten anything and give him something else that he prefers. So we stuck to our guns and gave him raw food two or three times a day. He weighs 1.6 kilos, so according to the natural instinct website he should eat around 90 grams of food a day.
I wouldn’t say we’ve cracked it yet. He sometimes refuses to eat, so we put the bowl back in the fridge, to teach him that he should eat when he’s fed, and that he can’t expect food to always be available to him. That sometimes results in him crying at 4am because he’s hungry. We will keep persevering with the routine. It should pay off in the long run.

Healthy Pup

I’ve noticed a huge improvement in his bowel movements. Raw food causes his poop to be really firm, not smelly at all, and very easy to pick up. He looks really healthy and is bursting with energy. Bless his little paws!

Frisky Pup

Elvis is becoming a teenager! He’s now six months old. He has started trying to hump my arm, and has been scratching my limbs with a wild look in his eye! He’s cocked his leg and peed a couple of times in the house. Ed and I made it clear that we didn’t like that, so he hasn’t done it for a few days. After reading about it, I’ve found out that he’s trying to mark his territory, rather than forgetting where he should pee. Continue reading “Frisky Pup”

Fussy Eater

What I’ve fed my chi so far

When we picked Elvis up, we were given some raw puppy food called ‘natural instinct ‘. I’d also been given a voucher for five weeks of free food, so we were all set. The company delivered it promptly. The convenient thing is that you can keep it in the freezer until needed. The strange thing is that Elvis could take it or leave it. At first, I thought it was due to general anxiety at settling in to a new home. We gave him some in his bowl every day, but he just sniffed at it, and occasionally nibbled it. We worried that he wasn’t eating enough, so we then gave him bits of chicken. He absolutely loved that. He sometimes gets bits of bacon as a treat. His particular favourite is cheese. See my video at him going mental for a bit of cheese! On reflection, and after getting used to his little habits, I’ve learned that his favourite food is bits that he can pick up in his mouth, then run off into his crate to eat in his own time. He often runs in and out of his crate, taking up to eight little pieces of chicken in there. He sometimes saves some for later. He wouldn’t be able to do that with the raw food, because it has a pate consistency.

Puppy Treats

I’ve read that training a puppy is all about praising them when they do something well, and giving them small treats. Elvis has a tiny appetite and tiny stomach, and often doesn’t want a bit of chicken, even though he loves it. I suppose we are still learning how much to feed him. One treat that he does like are puppy chocolate buttons. He likes to pretend it’s alive, kill it, then take it into his crate!