Every other month our pet expert and Canine Coaches dog trainer Jill Bailey will answer your pet questions. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info on Canine Coaches visit caninecoaches.com. Q: I have had people ask me if it is O.K. to give their dog “human” medication. A: You should always follow the general rule that if it wasn’t prescribed for you don’t take it. All of these “human” rules apply to your dog too. Please be aware that many human medications can be toxic to your dog. Not only is it important that you don’t give human medications to your dog without your veterinarian’s advice, but you shouldn’t leave them out where your dog (or any pet) may be able to get to them. Remember that golden rule of managing the environment: If you don’t want your dog to get to it, put it away. Your veterinarian is the only person who can prescribe medication for your dog — the proper type and dose. Q: Why does my dog shed so much? A: There can be many reasons, but it is completely natural for your dog to shed. Generally in the winter the coat thickens, and the coat sheds in the spring. There are numerous breeds that have double-coats and you may have heard of “blowing coat” — this is a way to describe the shedding of the undercoat. There are a number of environmental and physical reasons that factor into shedding. When the shedding seems to be excessive, watch for some of the following signs: bald spots, red areas with bumps or scabs, open sores or constant licking. These can be signs of a more serious condition. There are so many different issues that can cause excessive shedding, including but not limited to allergies, infections or parasites. As always, it is important to see a veterinarian so that they can determine what tests need to be done for your dog in order to treat him/her properly. I wanted to be sure to remind everyone that at this time of year when decorations are going up and family is celebrating, your animals will be a big part of the festivities too! Don’t forget that many things that are part of our holiday celebrations are toxic to dogs: chocolate, poinsettia, mistletoe, holly, potpourri … the list goes on. Be sure to keep wires and ornaments out of your pet’s reach. Follow the general rule that if it isn’t your dogs’ food or treats, they should not have it. Have a safe and happy holiday season!
Jill Bailey is the Media Specialist at M3 Group by day, by night she is helping train dogs for Canine Coaches! Having a life-long love of dogs, Jill decided to get her training certification in 2012. Visit caninecoaches.com for more information.