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3 things that can seriously harm your dog

3 things that can seriously harm your dog

Two-legged dog's inspiring story is actually a cautionary tale
Story of a two-legged dog on two wheels 

I have always loved the internet much more than t.v. news. It can be compared to the difference between a lovely buffet dinner, where you can choose anything you like, and being force-fed tasteless and horrible tasting food with high ratio of synthetic ingredients. 

Going on YoutubeTwitter, Instagram and Facebook is most often a positive experience. People sharing happy moments and stories and many of them are about our animal friends.

Recently, I ran across the story of River the dog. River was attacked by two dogs and his back injury was so severe that he lost the use of his hind legs. Many people would decide to put a dog down with this type of injury, but River was lucky. His people decided to get a wheel apparatus for him to get around and now he is able to walk around and meet people and he is the talk of the town. Everyone loves him! 

As I was watching the video, smiling from ear to ear, I could feel my smile disappearing.  River, who was wheeling around town, had a spiky prong collar on, and carried a tennis ball in his mouth, all in the course of this video. Suddenly, I felt completely conflicted because while this dog was saved and has a good life, his guardians are completely unaware of the things that can harm him in other ways.

1. Why tennis balls are dangerous for dogs

Tennis balls are probably one of the most common dog toys out there. I am not sure why dogs love them so much, maybe because of its “furry surface” that feels close to a squirrel or a mouse. The fact is that these seemingly benign balls are so abrasive that they can reduce a dog’s teeth down to the roots in a matter of a few years. Teeth are extremely important not only for chewing but also for feeling. Plus their important energy meridians start at the roots of the canine teeth.

Healthier Alternative

Rather than using a tennis ball, choose food safe plastic ball or even better a toy from an all natural material such as felted wool, rope or similar. Of course, such toys require supervision, especially in dogs that love to eat their toys. 

Ball chucking tools cause many injuries

Ball throwers and chuckers are widely used to entertain dogs. From seeing how popular they are, it is clear that many people still have no idea how many dogs get injured by using them.  It is the repetitive one-sided motion or slipping, sliding and jarring that is a problem. In nature, canines would never sprint longer then a minute or two while it is very common to see dogs sprinting for 15, 30 minutes or longer.

The most common problems related to ball retrieving are lumbar spine and muscle injuries and strain, sacral-lumbar misalignments, cruciate ligament injuries and believe or not even chronic diarrhea can be caused by ball retrieving 

If your dog has already been injured, we have two Facebook lives on this topic that I hope will be helpful.  


Safe exercise alternatives

Instead of making your dog run back and forth like a yo-yo, engage him/her in hide and seek, recognizing names of toys, playing and socializing with other dogs. There are many options. All you need to remember is that anything repetitive that lacks variety often leads to injuries.

2. Prong collars - why they should never be used on dogs

This is a very sensitive topic. Recently, I saw a beautiful chart that showed how many important blood vessels, nerves, energy lines and muscles there are in the neck region. Any constriction and restriction of the energy flow results with pretty much a systemic reaction that can create conditions such as hypothyroidism, paw licking, neck pain, eye and ear problems and the list could go on.

Some people still have a hard time with this idea and often do not understand that when I speak against these old-fashioned ways of controlling dogs, I am not saying that they do not love their dogs. I am just suggesting to consider other safer ways because choke and prong collars make dogs ill and unwell.  

Healthier Alternative

Use a collar only for dog ID tag and of course fashion ;-). Attach a shock absorbing Gentle Leash to a harness that is properly fitted. They are definitely better than anything around your dog’s neck.

3. Kibble - the food that creates disease

Do you know of any human doctors claiming that processed food is better for people than fresh wholesome diet?  

The fact that many veterinarians still recommend processed food is a glaring example of how effective the pet food giants are in systematic brainwashing of the profession. Sadly, similar to human health, processed pet food is responsible for a many health problems in dogs.

In general, my philosophy has been not to fight the processed pet food giants and argue their ridiculous claims. I’d much rather help dog lovers make the switch or deepen your knowledge if you already feed raw or cooked diet.  

This is where the Recipe Maker comes into play, check it out and let me know what you think. 

© Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM

About the author

Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM is an Integrative veterinarian, nutritionist and creator of natural supplements for dogs and people. Helping you and your dog prevent disease, treat nutritional deficiencies, and enjoy happier, healthier, and longer lives together.

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