Has your dog ever buried his bones, or even his favorite toys, in your backyard? Well, if he has, hopefully he doesn't make it a habit to dig them up and bring the dirty mess back in your house!
What Makes My Dog Want to Bury Stuff?
The short answer is that it's an instinct. You see, ancient dogs survived on anything that they could scavenge or hunt. If they managed to get ahold of more than they could eat in a single meal, they had to come up with a way to make sure that the excess would still be available when they became hungry again. Dogs protected their leftover food by burying it. The dirt helped keep their food fresher longer by protecting it from sunlight. In addition, the temperature in the ground was cooler than in the air, so burying food helped it to stay fresh for longer. It also protected the food from flies, and prevented other animals from stealing it. When the dog was hungry again, he would return to his hidden cache and dig up his leftovers.
Today, dogs are given their food in portions, so they no longer need to save any for a later meal. However, many of them still have the instinct to bury "extras" in a secluded spot for later. Essentially, your dog is just following an ancestral urge. So even though you feed your dog every day, you can’t take that "save it for later" mentality out of him. The same goes for those toys, and sometimes some other household items like the TV remote.
What Can I Do About It?
So what do you do if your dog is the burying kind? If the burying urge becomes a problem for your pooch, remember that dogs tend to bury extras. Try these tips:
- Make your dog's favorite digging spots less attractive. You could try covering the spot with chicken wire or something that is not so paw-friendly.
- Try offering your dog a less-destructive option: Show him how he can bury his favorite toy under a blanket, or create a sandbox for his burying enjoyment.
- Pick up most of your doggie's play things and limit your dog's access to one bone and one toy at a time.
- Vary the type of dog bones and toys from time-to-time; this will help to keep him interested.
Limit the quantity of extras and provide some variety for your doggie, and you may just lessen his motivation to take those items out to the backyard and treat them like a buried treasure!
A dog’s sense of hearing is up to 10 times more efficient than the average human’s.
Dogs can also hear a much greater frequency range than humans can detect.
Why? Eighteen or more muscles can tilt, rotate, and raise or lower a dog’s ear.
Dogs have specialized ear shapes that allow them to ascertain where a sound comes from much faster than a human can, and to hear sounds that come from up to four times the distance that humans are able to hear.
So, have you ever noticed your dog intently sniffing the air, and you're just looking at him thinking, "What the heck are you doing? There isn't anything there." We can't smell what they smell, because dogs actually have almost 50 times more cells that are sensitive to smell than us humans have! Your dog has such a superior sense of smell that he can actually detect odors up to a million times less concentrated than a human can detect.
And a rather interesting tidbit is that a dog's sense of smell is at its greatest when he is moving. Maybe that is why so many dogs love to hang their heads out of car windows...they are literally taking in the scenery with their noses! (Be aware though, that dogs who hang their heads out of car windows are at significant risk of injury from airborne debris.)
It's good to know why they like to stick their heads out there, but that doesn't mean that we have to allow them to do it. The safest place for your dog when traveling is always in a crate. But we'll get to that another time...
That just says it all...
Found a quote today, “In a perfect world, every dog would have a home and every home would have a dog.”
What a great quote for this day. You see, I was attending a dog-related seminar this week, and being that it took place in a hotel that doesn't accept pets, it's a bit strange - while we are here discussing dogs all day, there aren't any dogs around!
Penny and I share our home with five dogs, and of course I always miss my own doggies when I'm away from home. (This photo here is of me and my Bichon, Tyler.) I even miss our doggie daycare pups when I don't get to see them for a while.
Sometimes, there is a surrogate doggie that I can latch onto to help fill the void. It's so nice when that happens. But it's so weird when I go away and there are just no dogs to be found! Kind of reminds me how important dogs are to my life and how happy I am just having a dog in my lap.
I honestly don't remember what it was like not having a dog in my life...and I cannot imagine living in a home in which there are no dogs. I must admit that I have always felt a little sorry for people who say that they have never "owned" a dog; they're missing so much love and so many smiles - and they don't even know it. And of course we all know that dogs own us; it's not the other way around.
Anyway, help me out a bit and give your pooch an extra snuggle from me as I make my way back to my pups!
Just found this photo online with a little quote beneath it:
"Don't Ask What Happened to the Rest of the Car
Unless You're Prepared to Hear the Answer..."
Thousands of pets have been displaced by Hurricane Sandy...I am sure by now that you have seen the pictures of the horrific conditions in NYC and in New Jersey. That very well could have been us; you just never know when and where something like this will happen!
As a disaster volunteer myself, I have seen what this type of disaster can do to people emotionally, and (as you can imagine) the most important thing to most of those affected is the safety of their loved ones; including their pets.
Photos like this just bring tears to my eyes. It tugs at my heart, imagining that something like this could happen to our precious pooches. So...what do we do about it?
Well, thanks to a contact that we have with the staff of Brooklyn Bark in NYC, there are a couple of things we can do! As they told us, "Too many people evacuated during Sandy have lost their homes and are facing uncertainty. Some short term situations that become available will not necessarily be pet friendly. To give these people the flexibility they may need in rebuilding their lives, we are seeking foster homes. This need is going to be continuing as evacuees move out of shelters into temporary situations over the next few weeks."
Gemini Dogs has already offered to assist the displaced doggies by fostering any of them who need a place to stay, and we have offered to drive down to NYC and pick them up as needed.
Brooklyn Bark is also collecting items that are needed for the animals that are currently in temporary emergency shelters, and you can help by donating the following items:
- Any Type of Unopened Dog or Cat Food
- Any Type of Dog or Cat Treats
- New or Gently Used Collars, Leashes, Crates, Carriers
- New or Gently Used Bedding or Towels
- New Toys of Any Type
You can bring your donations to Gemini Dogs anytime, and we will drive them down to NYC, where they can be distributed to the affected animals who desperately need them. After disasters like this, it is sometimes weeks and months before the people can get back to some sense of normalcy. Our thoughts are with all of the pet owners who are still searching for their companions, and we are thankful for those who escaped Sandy's path.
Just wanted to give a quick shout out to our buddy Rory who is recovering from TPLO surgery this week. Mommy sent us some pictures of him when he was up-and-about last fall, so here's to seeing him running on the beach again soon!
"I was putting up some pics today of my boy and came across these from the beach last September. Thought I'd share a couple of them. The ones by the water: Rory thought the waves were chasing him (no, he didn't go in). The one on the deck: After a hard day at the beach chasing the seagulls, for which he did get an "A" for effort." ~Diana & Rory
Well, the turn-out could have been better but we sure had a lot of fun today! Many Gemini Dogs have reported that they had graduations going on today, so congrats to all of these new grads, and we are sorry we missed you!
We are planning another Bark-B-Que Celebration hopefully in July, when Gemini Dogs will be 21 years old! Check your calendars and suggest a good date for us!
We wanted to say a special hello to a brand new doggie named Koda who attended today to meet us all. Wilson, a Gemini training dog, stopped in for a tour of the daycare and will join us next week. We were also happy to see our daycare buddies, Charlie, Bailey, Jake & Oz, and Deja, Bentley, Dancer, Addie, Neely, and all the others who came by for some great food and a fabulous demo from the Westford K-9 Unit. Even some of our extended Gemini family came by. We are continuing the raffles this week in daycare and classes, so please join us to raise some more money for Corey's doggies - they deserve it!
Today was Armed Forces Day, so a special shout out to our son, LCpl Kyle Allen, USMC - we miss you and love you very much and can't wait to see you again soon!