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Messages - sc.trojans

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Behavior, Housebreaking, Obedience / Re: Dog pawing at door to get in
« on: July 07, 2010, 09:49:32 am »

It is not realistic to expect a dog to be content isolated in a backyard when just brought into your home last week.  At this stage, the psychological needs are significant and she needs more than anything to bond to you both, and learn that she can trust you.

It is asking a lot to put a lot of breeds outside - my own won't tolerate it either as these are pack animals.  But recognize the unique needs right now having just entered your home. That doesn't even feel like her trusted space yet.

As I do rescue and place dogs, I always require for example that the new adopters take some time off work, pick up the dog at the end of the week etc. to maximize the bonding time they will have.  I also recommend that they spend time with the dog, and in the case of separation anxiety (which your girl may have some) ensure that separation is done very slowly, and very gradually.  In extreme cases for example, it is important that to show the dog what to expect and that you leaving is ok, I have the person walk outside for seconds....wor king up to a minute, then 2 etc.

To get her accustomed to outside, if she is going to need to be out there (remember that no dog should be isolated outside for hours on end) for periods, start introducing it to her in a positive way.  First, spend time out there with her and show her it is a good place.  Then give her a stuffed kong with tasty treats inside to occupy her, and go inside for a brief period.  Work yourself up and gradually increase the time, ensuring she has something to do/eat/work on.  Failure to do these things translates as punishment to her otherwise.

Good luck!

Food Discussion & Information / Re: anyone tried this food???
« on: January 04, 2010, 04:23:08 pm »

I don't like this food for several reasons...firs t, it has a lot of potentially problematic grains......wh eat and barley are high allergen and not my choice.  Rice is the easiest to digest so if grains are to be included, I advocate rice or sweet potato in place of grain.

Second, they clearly don't have a vet nutritionist on board because they, like many dog foods today, are using ingredients that are not biologically appropriate for dogs and therefore cannot provide the intended nutrient.  Example, Flaxseed is not a source of omega 3 for dogs as it provides ALA that must be converted to derive omega 3.  Dogs are not capable of making this conversion and therefore cannot derive omega 3 benefit from flaxseed (many humans can't make this conversion as well actually).  Fish oils are the only reliable, biologically appropriate source of omega 3 for dogs.

Third, their lab assay is incomplete.... they don't even provide a calcium and phosphorus analysis which is the most critical ratio and two nutrients I evaluate in dog food - the most critical for growing dogs.

There are so many better foods out there, I see no reason to use this one.
Just my two cents.

General Board for Big Dogs with Big Paws / Re: Nibbling
« on: October 15, 2009, 11:42:53 pm »

In my house, we call those kisses (others call licks kisses - but not us) and as Patrick states - very special :)

Puppies do this as a loving gesture mostly to their mom, and most then outgrow or don't do it anymore (not the same as self-grooming) - so those who continue to do it, do it out of a respectful loving gesture to their leader.

My Berner does this to me and I cherish it - even when it hurts :)

Newfoundland Discussions / Re: omg CHECK THIS OUT
« on: September 16, 2009, 07:01:43 pm »

I understand your frustration... .you have outlined why I would never leave one of my dogs with an unknown groomer.  I do my dogs myself.  The fact is for me, I want my dogs to have a positive experience and not fear being bathed, crated or dried.  I can always tell dogs handled by strangers since they usually have issues with these things - especially dryers.  I think it is important to introduce a blow dryer carefully and positively to ensure accepted through life as well as being bathed and standing for it.  I give treats to ensure a positive experience and have a dog dryer, so two hairy dogs are bathed and fully blow dried in two hours.

The issue here with how long it takes is because they are not drying the dog - they are relying on cage drying....stic k the dog in the cage and point blowers on him so they don't have to do any actual grooming.  This always results in a "damp" dog when dealing with these breeds - The one time I took a Berner rescue to the groomer, I got back a damp dog.  I do not think cage drying is good practice either unless the dog has a real issue with dryers - then they will rely on it.  Ideally, a good groomer should be drying your dog.

Just know that it is not typical to be trimming a newfie - so you will get a confused look.  Trimming ears and feet are standard and this is what I do on my breeds as well - but legs and chest are not typically trimmed.  Again, I trim ears and feet myself - why pay someone to do something so simple?

I think you would be better served investing in a dog dryer and washing your dog yourself.  Unless you get a great referral to a highly professional groomer, not paid help, you won't likely get what you're looking for and your dog will sit in a crate, wet most of the day.


Yes - there is a lot that goes into proper structure - including a level topline, which your boy may not have.  A poor topline will certainly affect gait and movement overall - and has a bigger impact on the back than usually the hip joint.

Structure also includes angulation - including front and rear angulation - very important in how the dog moves and affects gait.

ANY physiological imbalance, even minor, can cause a dog to "pace" - pacing is where the legs on the same side of the dog move together (this is incorrect gait sine the front left should move with the rear right).

You have Rota now and are absolutely right, that all you need to do is love and take care of him.  But I hope you also realize that there are more responsible breeders out there and it is important to work to find the reputable ones.

Going to the breed club and seeing who is active and abides by their code of ethics for breeding is a good start.  Checking with Newfie rescue, since those people always know who is breeding responsibly.  And ALWAYS ensuring you get a contract.  NO responsible breeder sells a dog without one.  Distance doesn't matter - the breeder will send you their contract for review, discuss any concerns you have in the contract, and have you sign and return it.  They will send you a signed copy with the puppy.  There should be health guarantees in that contract, and what that breeder expects you to do for that puppy, including vet care, training, and nutrition.  Health certifications are usually included and the breeder may offer certain refunds back for successfully completing health certs (good breeders want to know how your dog turns out since it affects their breeding program and informs them whether they should be breeding those two dogs).

Having pretty dogs does not make a good breeder - you want someone who does the health certs, shows them to you, and does some pedigree analysis to understand who to breed her dogs to.  Breeders who simply buy a female and a male are not doing their homework.

Good luck with Rota and keep us posted.....but know that there may not be anything major that needs to be done for him - he just may have poor structure.  If there is something, do the x-rays and get him certified and get him into OFA so that other buyers, like you have something to reference.  Its all valuable information.


You posed a lot of questions here, so I will offer what I can....

As Patrick stated, hearing a percentile would indicate that she did PennHip - the most scientific basis for grading the hips and honestly, more reliable than even the OFA.  Before purchasing him however, you should have requested proof of all health certifications and had her explain them all to you.  So if there was a Pennhip evaluation done, ask to see it.

Keep in mind however, that both parents may have been certified with clear hips, by either the OFA or Pennhip and this still does not guarantee that your pup will be free of it.  Simply looking at the parents is not sufficient, and knowing what the grandparents also looked like, as well as all the offspring those grandparents produced (your pup's parents' littermates) is what is key.  Good pedigree analysis, including a vertical evaluation is your best option for evaluating a pup's health prospects.

See this OFA article to understand more:

You asked what you are entitled to if there is a problem - that all depends on your contract with the breeder.  Good breeders provide contracts to protect the interests of the animal.  Your contract outlines any health guarantee, and commitments by the breeder.  My contract for example states that I will get money back for completing each health certification on my dog for example, and if there is a crippling problem, I get my money back.  If you do not have a contract, then you are likely not entitled to much of anything.  You made a direct, albeit blind purchase, with the breeder and it becomes "buyer beware" if you did not get a contract.

I took a look at your video - and honestly, there is no reason to panic.  His gait is not good (but so are a LOT of dogs) or "correct" but that does not mean he has hip dysplasia necessarily.  Keep in mind that he is not limping, so if his hips are not clear, they are not likely severely affected either.  It looks like he can live a good quality life despite his gait, and may not have any issues for a long time.

Most giant breed dogs, and certainly many many newfies are dysplastic to some degree.  There are also a host of issues that are possibilities affecting gait, so it could also be laxity in the hock (also a common issue in the breed) or just poor structure or angulation from the back causing poor gait. If it is a structure weakness, then it is what it is and your focus will be on management.

The important thing to do for him is ensure proper exercise and proper muscle development.  I have a 6 month old rescue Bernese Mtn Dog here right now and he came out of a petstore cage completely down on his hocks, barely able to walk, with no muscle development whatsoever.  After swimming therapy and proper exercise for the past month, this boy looks remarkably better, fully upright, walking normally and getting stronger.  He has both a bad hip (dysplastic) and a bad elbow (dysplastic) but is looking quite good given his condition.  We will focus on continuing his therapy and building strength, good supplements and a raw diet, and place him in a good home that will continue these things....he'll have a good quality of life.  So just keep that in mind.....

If you are really concerned, and want to learn more, then you should get involved with your local Newf club - those are your best breed experts and will happily educate you on your dog - just ask the show folks for an evaluation - and seek a consult with a good orthopedic vet who can x-ray him and submit to OFA.

General Board for Big Dogs with Big Paws / Re: my breeder sucks.....
« on: August 31, 2009, 08:27:37 pm »
im checking on the ofa thing, it says for the sire, there are 2 entrys one in 2004 that says cardiac and one in 2005 that says patella

for the dam there is nothing on file, so that means she wasnt tested? is this bad?

Unfortunately, it doesn't look good.  Patrick offered good info here, but in addition, the breeder has to check off on her submission whether "failing" results can be posted publicly on their site - if she did not authorize this, then it is also possible that what is missing is a failing result - and only good results are posted.  When I view OFA records online and see elbows but no hips for example, this is the standard presumption.  As Patrick mentioned, a breeder wouldn't do patellas, and not hips.....

So no results can mean not done, or done and failed with poor results.  Either way - a serious concern.

I recommend x-raying your pup - prelims are good indicators of future problems.  My golden rescue was x-rayed since I knew nothing of where she came from and the OFA told me she had elbow dysplasia.  She has never limped and we wouldn't have known otherwise, so fortunately it allowed me to begin treating her for this condition early, preventatively as a pup - lots of joint supplements and specific therapy exercises has kept her active and healthy.  Always a good idea in big dogs!

General Board for Big Dogs with Big Paws / Re: my breeder sucks.....
« on: August 13, 2009, 12:34:54 am »

More important than AKC papers or vaccination records, are health certifications .  Did she provide proof of hip, elbow, heart, eye, and thyroid clearances?  If not, yep - backyard breeder and there is nothing to justify that high price you paid.

If so, you are lucky (you never met her, saw the conditions of the dogs, or the parents) and paid a justifiable price given the investment she made.

Just ask her what vaccines were given so you know what not to duplicate (and risk health issues or side effects) and provide this info to your vet.  No big deal.

Golden Retriever Discussions / Re: my golden oldie- need advice
« on: August 07, 2009, 06:14:31 pm »

All depends on your budget really.....

If you need to stick with an NSAID, then the orthopedic specialists around me all advocate Previcox as the safer one - you can request this from your vet in place of Rimadyl.

You can try homeopathic remedies such as Zeel and Traumeel - they alone may not be enough for your guy given how far along.

I am a big believer in giving a joint lubricant in addition to glucosamine.  So hyaluronic acid or Celadrin (Natural Factors is a good brand) are great choices.  For glucosamine, the best liquid one is Synflex in my view.

If these are tolerated with the IBD, then they could be worth it.

If budget allows, stem cell surgery is a great option. Is your guy dysplastic? or just arthritic?  Usually with such severe arthritis, dysplasia is involved. Makes a difference.... in treatments.

General Board for Big Dogs with Big Paws / Re: hot spots
« on: July 31, 2009, 09:55:42 pm »
There are no schools involved and I trust my vet completely. This is the first hot spot, I will watch but so far I am not concerned. The spot is healing up nicely. I think it has something to do with the two dogs play fighting and her hair is very thick. My daughters dog is on Hills too at a different vets office.

Well, just in case it helps to have another weigh in here - Newf Owner is right here.  Hills sponsors the one and only text book used in vet school - all accredited vets in the U.S. are taught their one and only nutrition course by Hills, who also provides a "start up" offer upon graduation and starting a new practice.  They are indoctrinated by Hills just like the pharmaceutical s and M.D.s - Hills is as bad a food as there is out there - nothing beats it for lowest quality ingredients and whoever looks at those labels and thinks any of that is GOOD for any living being is crazy - most just don't read labels, but rather just follow the vet.

In reality, a vet knows little about nutrition unless they offer you and me more education, learning etc.  I would never take nutrition advice from my vets.

The Whole Dog Journal does an excellent review of dog food each year in Feb - and they analyze all ingredients, their source and processing plants and outline why those who don't make the cut, don't.  Hills has never made the cut and if you want to know more about why, I am happy to post more to explain their position.

Good foods, the top foods, are found in specialty supply stores - not a vets office or grocery store.  www.naturapet. com offers a good label analysis program also.

Hot spots are a sign of poor health in my view - in my 40 years of living with dogs, I have never had one.  Mine are wet all the time, and wrestle and play all the time.  Dogs should be able to do this without getting hot spots.

The skin is called the third kidney, because it is an expelling organ - most things affecting the skin are coming from the inside out - not external.  Rashes, hives, acne etc. - all signs of the inside issue coming out and hot spots are more often than not the same sign.  Food is a big culprit, with the immune system and bacteria.


She is going to talk to a doctor who used to do an operation where they snipped a certain muscle rather than replace the hips. We are looking at all the options.
It was a very good visit.

Your dog is not a candidate for this procedure - in fact, at his age, and his size he is not a candidate for the FHO OR the TPO procedure.  His only surgical option at this age is total hip replacement:

If he has been diagnosed as a puppy, he could have had other procedure before any arthritic change set in.  Alway get your large breed puppies x-rayed and certified for this very reason - early diagnosis is key.

You can use human glucosamine products - in fact they're better.  The liquids are best, and glucosamine should be given away from food for maximum absorption.

When he barks excessively we have been going out and throwing water at him. It has quieted him quite a bit.

Please don't ever do this - or other punitive things that dogs can't reason.  As was said, you are only teaching him that you coming out to him means bad things for him and could be escalating his people problem.

I think a trainer to the home is a great idea and am very relieved that you have found a positive trainer who will use a clicker.  I trust she will teach you how to avoid using all negatives with him that fail to show him what you want him to do.......

Putting him outside all day is not optimal - dogs are pack animals and isolation is the worst thing for them.  Working dogs who work outside all day are focused on a job at hand (mental stimulation) and stay with their flock, owner, etc.  Simply being banished in a backyard is punishment.

Patrick gives good advice in my view - I have never met this breed that wasn't aggressive with strangers on the property - this is the breed.  So if there are people coming around, putting him in a quiet room (that signifies calm, peace, and positive) is a good idea.....not some place that will be construed as punishment.  Also, when put in this place, he should be given a stuffed kong or something to occupy him, keep him focused and stimulated and positive.

Think Positive!  All things positive.


I have not had to deal with this in my own dogs, but given the rescue I do, I see it all the time and just rescued a Berner pup that will be requiring hip surgery.

It really all comes down to how severe the dysplasia is - your dog should be evaluated by a Board certified orthopedic surgeon, not a regular vet.  Vets are not radiologists and not trained to diagnose dysplasia ( I have yet to find one who has rendered a diagnosis accurate).  Ideally, you would get his hips certified by either OFA or PennHip and you will then understand exactly the severity in each hip.

If severe, surgey may be the only option for a decent quality of life.  Both the TPO (Triple Pelvic Osteotomy) and total hip replacement have their place depending on age, condition, amount of arthritic change, and muscle tone.

Less severe cases can do quite well with many of the things Patrick outlined - he should be on glucosamine and chondroitin every day for life (I like Synflex best for optimal absorption), as well as Adequan shots potentially.  I also use Zeel and Traumeel, Wobenzym, Celadrin, and Hyarluronic Acid.  Physical therapy, including swimming or underwater treadmill maintains synovial fluid in the joints without putting any pressure on his hips.....a great form of exercise for such guys.


Immediate vet attention and anti-venom with specific fluids is critical if the bite is truly e biggest risk is kidney failure.....

The beautfiul bloodhound that won the AKC Eukanuba a few years ago just died from a snake bit - but he didn't die for 9 more months post bite until his kidneys failed.
Definitely something that must be prevented, and your guy likely still needs vet care.


A Raw diet will make it worse....

The yellow spots are because the lawn burns - this is from the nitrogen and acidity in the urine.  The higher the protein in the diet, the harder the burn.  It has NOTHING to do with hormone, so the female thing is an old wives tale....

The dogs' ph and nitrogen level are the key......

I just patch my lawn with sod.....and try to keep up :)

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