"Bark 'n' Scratch"

Volume III - Issue 29:  October 14, 2005
Published by:
Christopher Aust, Master Trainer

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In Today's Issue ...

=>  Just Visiting? Please Subscribe Here.  ->
=>  Christopher's Drool - Winterize Your Dog
=>  Will a Second Dog Help?
=>  Quote of the Week
=>  Mail Bag
=>  Recommended Stuff
=>  The Blonde: A Year in Review

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Christopher's Drool

Hey Everybody,

I know this may seem premature but I think it is something we all need to start thinking about so we are prepared when the cold weather hits. Our dogs needs change with the changing weather, and we need to keep that in mind.


I have often mentioned how nutrition affects the behavior and health of our dogs. What we have to keep in mind, often, our nutritional needs change throughout the course of the year. This depends on several factors to include… lifestyle, environment, age, health, and breed.

Some dogs are more active in the winter and some in the summer, so I'm not going to go into all the different groups. Just use common sense. If you know your dog is going to be getting less exercise in the winter, keep an eye on his waist-line.


This is most important in the colder climates but is something everyone should consider. I mean, who wants to be the guy who showed up at a gunfight with a knife!

Boots Booties for your dog's feet are just as important in blizzard country as they are in the desert. Whether it's hot or cold, we have to protect our dogs' feet. Boots can be bought through most major pet stores and online. They are cheap and worth the investment.


If you live where you get snow, be sure to invest in a jacket for your thin-coated dogs. Chicago in January may not be cold to a Samoyed, but you can bet your behind a Chihuahua is going to be freezing his butt off!


Make sure to keep the metal clasps on your collars and leashes lubricated during cold weather. A quick shot of oil can prevent your dog from getting off leash in the cold weather and keep them safe with you.


Keep your dog on his leash in snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm. Snow can obscure familiar scents, and canines can become lost.

Take care to wipe off your pooch's paws, legs and tummy when they come in out of the elements. She can accidentally ingest salt, antifreeze or other chemicals while licking her paws.

Keep your cats inside. Outdoors, felines can easily freeze, become lost or be stolen, injured or killed.

Do not leave your dog or cat alone in a vehicle during the winter months. A car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold, and cause an animal to freeze to death.

If there are outdoor felines in your area, please make it a point to bang loudly on the hood of your car before getting in. Cats often sleep under the hoods of vehicles in search of warmth, and can be injured or killed by the fan belt when the engine is started.

While essential to a car's cooling system, antifreeze can be fatal to dogs and cats--even in very small amounts. Clean up any spills from your vehicle immediately and consider switching to a propylene glycol-based antifreeze, which is significantly less toxic than conventional ethylene glycol antifreeze.


Keep in mind the breed you have, as well. A Springer Spaniel will tolerate high heat a lot longer than a Samoyed will. On the flip side, A Samoyed will deal with the cold far better. A little common sense and forethought will make the winter more comfortable for our furkids.

Well, the HSUS will be turning over rescue operation at Lamar Dixon to the State of Louisiana at the end of the month and patting themselves on the back for all the “work” they have done to rescue animals affected by the hurricanes. I guess they must have finished shooting their movie.

They say they will continue to assist with supplies and personnel even after they leave. This should be pretty easy since they have all the supplies there and there are numerous volunteers running around wearing HSUS t-shirts. ( keep in mind, if a volunteer refuses to wear it they are escorted off the property.)

The truth is the HSUS, by their own admission, isn't wanted down at Lamar Dixon anymore by the people who run it. Apparently, they feel they can do a better job without the HSUS or simply say the true mature of the beast based on it's own actions. Because of this, the HSUS was offered 20 acres to reset-up operations nearby by a local property owner. They had him escorted away by security.

Lets' face it folks. I don't think the HSUS wants to remain in the area working because they would have to spend more of the money that has been donated to them. That means less in the bank when everything is done. Perhaps they are ensuring they have enough left over to give their executives big bonuses for all their “work.”

It's time to stand up and write our legislators and the IRS and demand a complete audit of their finances subsequent to the hurricanes. If we don't stamp our feet now, the next disaster will be the same and the animals will again be left in squalor to fend for themselves and die trapped in their homes.

Keep those letters and suggestions coming. They are greatly appreciated.

Okay, that's it for now. I'm outta here!



P.S. P.S. Hey, Mr. Pacelle! Where's the money?

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Dear Mr. Aust,

Thanks for the great newsletter! I look for it every week and it is the first thing I click when it comes in.

About a year ago, my wife and I got a mixed breed dog, and I mean mixed, that has been the joy of our life. We originally saw her wandering the neighborhood and started leaving food out for her. She was a little timid at first and very malnourished. Since then, she has really come around. She loves everybody and gets along pretty well with other dogs once she has been introduced.

Here is the problem. My wife and my work schedule overlap during the day so the dog is left alone for about three hours a day. When she is alone, she becomes destructive. She chews up laundry, pillows, and shoes. Mostly, she doesn't chew them up, but will simply rearrange or drag out things into the middle of the room.

We had her crate trained, but she gets very depressed when left in the crate and mopes around the rest of the day. She is never put in her crate as punishment, she simply doesn't like it. We love her dearly and she is always with us when we are home. We carry her around and she sits on our lap when we watch television.

We think she is just bored without us here and wanted to know if getting her a friend for when we are gone will help. Maybe if she had another dog to play with, she wouldn't redecorate the house. What do you think?

John L.
Ontario, Canada

Will a Second Dog Help?

We all know dogs are pack animals with definite social needs. They need companionship and interaction to be truly happy and content with their lives. They also need to feel comfortable with their pack position and feel a sense of purpose within the family pack. I don't think anyone would dispute this claim.

There are several reasons to get a new dog. You may simply just want another one. Maybe you have a big dog, but would also like a lap dog. It could be you want to give a gift to a child to teach them the responsibility and duty we have to care for an animal. Getting a new dog to curb the inappropriate behavior of a dog already in the home, is one of the worst decisions well-meaning dog owners can make.

Whenever we bring a new dog into a home that already has a dog in place, the existing dog needs to be Alpha over the new dog. This is consistent with pack protocol, positioning and the natural instincts of a dog. It is no different in wild packs. When a new dog is allowed to enter a wild pack, they will remain subservient to the other pack members until the pack leaders allow them to step up to a higher status.

Now, if we bring in another dog that holds a lower pack status than the existing one, what do you think the new dog is going to do? He will mimic the existing dog. The existing dog knows the ropes, and the new dog knows this. He also knows his job is too fit into the pack. By emulating the existing dog, the new dog feels he is working towards a higher level of acceptance by the pack leaders.

Look at it like this. What happens when a child goes to a new school? The other kids are established in the environment and the new kid isn't. At first, the new kid basically holds no status with any group until he makes a move to fit in somewhere. Now if the new kid is yours, who would you want your kid to hang out with? The kid who is well behaved and gets good grades, or the little booger who knows the proper placement for a thumb tack on the teachers chair to ensure maximum penetration?

Bringing a new dog into a home with a problem dog could help. It has been my experience that this is the extreme exception rather than the rule. Normally, all you're going to get is two dogs that misbehave. The best thing to do is redirect the behavior of the existing dogs behavior, then introduce a new dog.

Now for the purposes of this discussion, we will assume the dog's behavior has been corrected, as I am sure you've read my previous articles on chewing and separation anxiety, J we have to look at when it is safe to bring the new dog in. Just because the problem child has been good for a couple of days or even a week or two, doesn't mean they won't have a relapse with the introduction of a new dog.

I recommend only bringing a new dog into the home once the existing dog has been acting appropriately for three weeks to a month as a minimum. This will indicate the existing dog is well on his way “to recovery” and lessen the chance of the old behavior returning. Additionally, you want the introduction of the new dog to be slow and easy. Take the time to prepare your existing dog for the new arrival.

If the existing dog has had recent behavioral problems and isn't used to other dogs being in the house, you need to acclimate them to the idea. Invite over friends who have dogs and allow their dogs to roam the house with yours. Watch your dog's reaction and see how he behaves in response to sharing his space. Make sure your dog's food/water bowls and bed are picked up off the floor before the arrival of the visitors. If the dogs are playing vigorously, put a different water bowl outside, or in a different area than your dogs bowl usually is, to give them a drink.

If your dog is not used to being around other dogs at all, they will need to be socialized to other dogs long before the new dog arrives at the house. This is not only to make it easier for both dogs to adapt to each other, but it also reduces the chance of two dogs fighting when they are suddenly forced to share their space.

We all want our dogs to be happy, well adjusted and love their home, but don't think adding a new dog to the mix is going to solve your behavioral problems. More than likely, all it is going to do is double them.

This article may be republished using the following attribution statement:

Copyright ©2004 Christopher Aust, Master Dog Trainer & Creator: The Natural Cooperative Training System (NCTS) for Dogs The Instinctual Development System (IDS) for Puppies Subscribe to the BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter: mailto:subscribe@Master-Dog-Training.com?subject=Subscribe VISIT NOW: http://www.Master-Dog-Training.com

Quote of the Week

Never judge a dog's pedigree by the kind of books he doesn't chew.

~ Anonymous ~

Mail Bag

Dear Christopher

A friend of mine sent a copy of your newsletter about the HSUS and the Katrina disaster to me. I have been at the Lamar Dixon facility working for them as a volunteer and I can assure you the rumors about the HSUS down here are true. The only time their paid employees seem to go to the field is when the cameras are running.

Things are such a mess it makes me sick. The animals that have been saved are in terrible condition because of the way they are cared for by HSUS. If they would let the volunteers care for them with the resources we have it wouldn't be this way.

Please keep beating the drum and letting everyone know what is going on down here. The HSUS is going to have a lot of explaining when this is all over.


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Joke of the Week

The Pond

An elderly man in Florida had owned a large farm for several years. He had a large pond in the back, fixed up nice;picnic tables, horseshoe courts, and some orange and grapefruit trees. The pond was properly shaped and fixed up for swimming when it was built.

One evening the old farmer decided to go down to the pond, as he hadn't been there for a while, and look it over. He grabbed a five gallon bucket to bring back some fruit. As he neared the pond, he heard voices shouting and laughing with glee. As he came closer he saw it was a bunch of young women skinny-dipping in his pond.

He made the women aware of his presence and they all went to the deep end.

One of the women shouted to him, "We're not coming out until you leave!"

The old man frowned, "I didn't come down here to watch you ladies swim naked or make you get out of the pond naked."

Holding the bucket up he said, "I'm here to feed the alligator."

Moral: Old men can still think fast!

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Thank You For Reading!  Have a Terrific Week!

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The Legal Mumbo-Jumbo

The BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter is published by Christopher Aust Copyright © 2005 All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted without the express written consent of the publisher or contributors.

We accept no responsibility for your use of any contributed information contained herein. All of the information presented in BARK 'n' SCRATCH is published in good faith. Any comments stated in this newsletter are strictly the opinion of the writer or publisher.

We reserve the right to edit and make suitable for publication, if necessary, any articles published in this newsletter. We reserve the right to publish all reader comments, including the name of the writer.

Christopher Aust, Master Dog Trainer & Creator:
The Natural Cooperative Training System (NCTS) for Dogs
The Instinctual Development System (IDS) for Puppies

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