Do Dogs Cry Like Us?

When dogs get upset, do they cry real tears like we do? Do they even have tear ducts? Our dog’s language is extremely intriguing. And, although they don’t talk the same language as us, they still have ways to communicate their feelings.

We all know when our dog is happy… but do they cry when they’re upset? Do their feelings get hurt?

A Dog’s Tear Ducts

Yes, dogs do have tear ducts like us. And, anyone who has a Maltese, or a Poodle, can attest to that. They are particularly apparent if your dog is pure white. Dog lovers who have a Maltese or Poodle are continuously wiping off the corner of their dog’s eyes due to their tear staining.

maltesedogbehaviorblog

Other breeds may also have excessive drainage from their eyes. In technical terms, this phenomenon is known as epiphora.

Tear Types and the Emotions

There are two types of tears humans and dogs share. These tears are known as basal tears and reflexive tears. Basal tears are continuously produced to keep the eye moist. Reflexive tears protect the eyes from allergens or any type of irritant.

Then, there are emotional tears. Dogs don’t share these with us. Emotional tears begin when we (humans) are overwhelmed, frustrated, or generally emotional. A dog’s tear ducts do not allow them to produce emotional tears. But, even though dogs don’t cry ‘tears’ when they’re upset, they still have their own way of letting us know.

Why Does My Dog Look Like She’s Crying?

If your dog looks as if she is crying, this could be due to a medical condition. The causes of ‘dog tears’ include the following:

  • Allergies: Allergies can cause a dog’s eye(s) to water… just like us. If your dog has allergies, your veterinarian should be contacted so you’re able to determine what she or he is allergic to.
  • Blocked Tear Ducts: If your dog’s tear ducts are blocked, you may notice what appears to be tears leaving his eyes.
  • Scratched Cornea: If your dog is active, there’s a possibility she may be ‘crying’ due to a scratched cornea. If your dog has a scratched cornea, she might also be blinking excessively.
  • Irritants: There could be a speck of dirt in your dog’s eye, or some other type of irritant, causing tears.

Do Dogs Understand When We Cry?

Yes, research has found dogs respond to our tears. They know when we’re upset based on our facial expressions and the tone of our voice. Research has gone so far to say many dogs can understand how we’re feeling without even seeing us in person. They’re able to tell by a picture.

The Bottom Line

Even though it might look as if your dog is sad, and crying emotional tears, your dog isn’t truly ‘crying’ the way do. If you notice tears coming from your dog’s eyes, make an appointment with your veterinarian to find out the cause.

6 Steps to Potty Training Your Puppy

puppy training tips.png

Young puppies have an extremely hard time holding their bladder and will need to relieve themselves frequently. Potty training isn’t an easy process, but with time and dedication, you’ll have a much easier time as your pup gets older.

Potty training should begin the moment you pick up your puppy. This will help her get on the right track, sooner. Although she may have accidents, she will begin to understand what is expected of her. And, this will mean less clean-up for you. In this article, we’ll go through the steps of potty training… the ‘do’s,’ and the ‘do not’s.’

Step 1: Praise Your Puppy Excessively

Being required to go potty in a designated area is new to any dog. A dog’s instincts don’t tell them they’re not permitted to use the bathroom inside the house. Their instincts tell them to find an area where they don’t sleep or eat, and use the bathroom there, whether inside or outside.

That’s why it’s so important to praise your dog excessively when he uses the potty outside. Your dog needs your feedback to be successful in potty training (and all other types of training). Be sure to praise your puppy immediately after they potty outside… or else they won’t know what you’re praising them for.

The praise can be in the form of an excited “yay, good job,” a yummy low-calorie treat or kibble, or both. Many dog lovers carry around a handful of kibble in their pockets out of their puppy’s daily portions.

Step 2: Utilize a Crate

There’s controversy in the dog world about using crates… some dog lovers want a crate and others feel it’s not necessary. But, the crate essentially becomes your dog’s ‘den’ or ‘safe space.’ The crate is also helpful because puppies don’t like to use the bathroom where they sleep.

The crate should have a soft layer of padding to it. A dog bed generally works just fine. The crate should be large enough for your puppy to stand up and move around, but not large enough for your pup to relieve himself and move to another spot to sleep.

You can also place toys in the crate with your puppy so they’re able to play if they get bored. Mental puzzle toys, and some type of chew toy, are usually best. The Kong toys work extremely well, they’re mentally stimulating, and puppies generally can’t rip them to shreds. One of the biggest mistakes puppy parents make is grabbing a toy that looks neat, but their puppy shreds the toy into small pieces and end up swallowing parts of the toy. This could lead to a blockage… and we don’t want that to happen.

For this step, it’s critical to note that puppies should not stay in their crates for long periods of time. The crate should only be utilized when you’re not able to pay attention to your puppy. Then, once their potty trained, you can leave the door to their crate open so they’re able to freely enter and exit.

Step 3: No Punishments

Punishing your puppy for urinating or defecating on the floor can do more harm than good. By the time you find out your puppy has had an accident, your pup likely doesn’t remember what they did. And, even if you catch them in the act, punishing your puppy could permanently damage the bond and trust they have with you.

Staying calm when they have an accident is essential. You shouldn’t yell, chase, or smack your puppy. You also shouldn’t ‘rub his nose in it.’ Not only will you lose their trust, but they will associate going potty with punishment and may resort to using the bathroom in areas you won’t find.

Some dog lovers will argue, ‘but rubbing her nose in it works.’ And, yes… sometimes it does. But, you risk the bond you will have with her for the rest of her life by using punishment as a learning method.

Step 4: Show Her Where to Go

If you catch your puppy in the act, instead of punishing, try to re-direct her attention. You can re-direct her attention by saying “let’s go potty outside” or something similar. Then, immediately bring her outside to show her where it’s okay to use the bathroom. Then, once she uses the bathroom in your designed area, that’s when you can excessively praise her. She will connect the dots, and learn you are happy when she uses the bathroom in that particular area.

Step 5: Don’t Overuse Puppy Pads

You can, and should, have puppy pads in the house while you’re training your pup. But, you shouldn’t set them up in multiple areas around the house. This is confusing to a puppy, and they won’t understand why it’s not okay to use the bathroom in the house. They also may not be able to distinguish between a puppy pad and an area rug, or why she’s allowed to use the bathroom in some areas of the home but not others.

Step 6: Establish a Routine

Establishing a routine with any puppy or adult dog is critical. Dogs have a great sense of time, and if you have a set routine it will make potty training much easier. For example, if you always take her potty after she eats, she will understand after she eats she goes potty outside. This may take time- so don’t get upset if she doesn’t immediately understand the routine. Don’t worry- she will.

The Bottom Line on Potty Training

The most important step you should be aware of in this process is to always be positive with your puppy. Dogs and puppies are eager to please you. They want to make you happy as often as possible. Also, understand every dog is different, and some puppies may take longer than others to learn what’s expected of them.

Be Prepared: Make a First Aid Kit for Your Dog

April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month, Canine Companions would like to help pet parents prepare for the unexpected, and we have a few tips to share with you.

firstaidfordogs

Taking care of your dog in the case of an emergency can be challenging, frustrating, and all around overwhelming. Most families view their dog as an important member of the family, and seeing them in pain is heartbreaking.

Putting together a pet emergency kit can help tremendously in the event something should happen.

Supplies and Phone Numbers Every Dog Owner Should Have

There are certain supplies every dog owner should have in case of an emergency. First, before you put together all of the necessary materials, jot down all of the important phone numbers. Write down your veterinarian’s phone number, the phone number for the American Poison Control Center (888-426-4435), and don’t forget to write down any important medical history.

Most veterinarians will recommend the following in your dog’s first aid kit:

  • Gauze for wrapping wounds, cuts, etc.
  • Milk of magnesia
  • Active charcoal
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Adhesive tape
  • Nonstick bandages
  • An eye dropper
  • Digital thermometer
  • Muzzle
  • Blanket
  • Dog leash

You should also make sure the information on your dog’s collar is correct. And, microchipping your dog is a great idea should he run away or get lost somehow. In cases of emergency, like a natural disaster, your dog could easily become lost. A microchip will provide a pet professional with your information so your dog can quickly be returned home to you.

Don’t Take it Personal

A dog who is in pain isn’t likely to act like himself or herself. A dog in pain might nip, growl, and show other forms of aggression. It’s absolutely crucial not to take these behaviors personally.

Think about when you’re in pain. Are you irritable? Most people who are in pain are irritable, they don’t mean to hurt anyone’s feelings. They’re just not feeling well. It’s the same with our dogs.

Learn More About Pet First Aid

You can learn more first-aid procedures at the American Veterinary Medical Association’s website by clicking here. The AVMA has detailed instructions on how to take care of the following:

  • Poison and exposure to toxins
  • Seizures
  • Fractures
  • Bleeding
  • Burns
  • Choking
  • Heatstroke
  • Shock

Being fully prepared is critical to your dog’s well-being. And, if you’re reading this article, you’re in the right place.

Egg Puffs for Dogs Recipe: Healthy and Satisfying

Green leafy veggies are great for our dog’s health… and have even been proven to reduce cancer risk! So, why not make our dog a delicious treat out of them?

We have included a simple recipe for you below… feel free to print and save!

Ingredients

  • 6 cups of well-packed spinach
  • 1/2 cup of gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of cottage cheese
  • 3 strips of cooked bacon diced into small pieces

Directions

Preheat oven to 400º F. Grease a mini muffin pan and place on a baking sheet.

  • Chop the spinach in batches carefully with a knife or in a food processor
  • Sauté the chopped spinach with a small amount of olive or coconut oil for about 10 minutes. They will shrink significantly in this process.
  • Move the spinach to a mixing bowl, then stir in the cottage cheese and bacon until well-mixed.
  • Stir in the eggs, and mix.

Drop spoonfuls  of the mixture into the greased mini muffin pan. Bake 25 minutes or until the puff feels springy to the touch and there is no liquid remaining.

After the puffs cool down, place in the refrigerator for later consumption.

Your dog will love these!

Could CBD Help My Dog’s Seizures?

 

CBD Oil and Seizures: Does it Really Help?

It has been found that one to five percent of dogs have a seizure disorder. Watching your dog have a seizure is a frightening experience, especially when it’s the first time. You feel out of control. And, you’re not exactly sure how to help your dog. If this should happen, you should try to be calm and observe his surroundings to make sure he is away from anything that could harm him. You must also remember they could accidentally bite you if your hands get too close to their mouth during a seizure.

When we adopt our dogs, serious conditions like seizures aren’t usually our main concern. But, learning about everything that could affect our dogs is important.

If you’re unsure of what a seizure looks like, you’ll generally notice the following symptoms:

  • Collapsing
  • Stiffening of the muscles
  • Jerking
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Foaming at the mouth
  • Dazed/confused gaze

After a dog has a seizure, she might have difficulty walking. She may be disoriented. Or, stare off into space. You might also notice her bumping into things she usually knows are there.

CBD has become popular in the dog world. And, it comes as no surprise once you find out it’s not only been found to help with seizures, but with pain, sleep, anxiety, skin problems, cancer, and digestive issues, too.

There are 2 Types of Seizures

There are two types of seizures; symptomatic or idiopathic.

Symptomatic seizures are caused from an abnormality inside or outside of the brain (lead poisoning, encephalitis, head trauma).

Idiopathic epilepsy doesn’t have a cause, though. And, it’s thought to be genetic. Dog breeds who are commonly diagnosed with idiopathic epilepsy include English Springer Spaniels, Viszlas, Collies, Beagles, and Dachshunds.

What’s the Best Way to Treat Seizures?

The medication that is prescribed to dogs with seizures can carry heavy side effects including lethargy, long-term liver damage, and/or confusion.

One of the methods dog lovers are turning to is Cannabidiol, or CBD. CBD oil is a non-toxic, natural, and effective form of treatment (of course, make sure you talk to your vet).

When you’re researching CBD and seizures in dogs, there are hundreds of positive testimonials. But, it comes as no surprise that CBD is met with controversy.

CBD Dosage for Dogs

When you choose to use CBD oil for your dog with seizures, it’s important to start at the lowest dose possible. You can then increase the dosage if necessary.

The dosage of the CBD oil is also a discussion you could have with your veterinarian.

Side Effects of CBD Oil

When you’re looking for a new medication for your dog, natural or pharmaceutical, you want to know the side effects.

CBD has no known side effects when administered on its own. However, CBD can have interactions with certain prescribed medication by inhibiting a family of liver enzymes, called cytochrome P450. This enzyme metabolizes more than 60% marketed medications we consume.

Read more about CBD drug interactions here. Click here for a full list of Medications Metabolized by Cytochrome P450 3A4

CBD, Not THC

Dogs are extremely sensitive to THC. THC is the primary psychoactive component of a marijuana plant. Cannabidoil (CBD) is one of 113 compounds found in cannabis plants. The compounds, known as Cannabinoids, are natural and don’t contain any psychoactive properties or effects.

CBD with extremely low doses of THC may help dogs with seizures significantly, though. And, it has been found to be particularly helpful to dogs who are experiencing pain from cancer and/or seizures.

Dr. Stephanie McGrath is a veterinarian who specializes in neurology at Colorado State University. She is an advocate for CBD in veterinary medicine and is currently leading a clinical study on the treatment of epilepsy (which causes seizures).

 

Testimonials Say it All

Here at CannaCanine, we share testimonials so you’re able to hear real-world experiences about dogs who have used our products. Below, you will read a testimonial about Blaise, a dog who was experiencing seizures. His owner no longer wanted him to take phenobarbital… so she considered CBD oil. The CBD oil worked wonders on Blaise.

“Blaise started to experience seizures when he was just a year old. The seizures started to be mild and were few at the start. I thought nothing of it at first because they were so infrequent. When Blaise was around two and a half he started having partial seizures. These affected half of his body and he would suddenly tumble to the ground.  This was absolutely horrifying to watch as they came often without warning.

To help combat his seizures I was recommended to give him phenobarbital. Phenobarbital is a common medicine given to dogs to help treat seizures. Several people told me to hold off on the phenobarbital treatments due to the ill side effects on dogs. I decided to wait before starting treatment to see if the seizures would return. By Blaise’s third birthday he finally had a full seizure. My worst fears had finally manifested!

Our vet immediately put Blaise on a high dose of phenobarbital for every 12 hours. Blaise became so drugged up that he would lose his balance and fall over. The worst of it was when he fell down twelve flight of stairs! I hated seeing him like this. His perky and fun personality was gone, replaced by lethargy and sadness. Blaise became a shell of the fun dog he once was.

A a nurse I had read articles on the beneficial effects of CBD oil on seizures. I started to research natural and alternative medicine for canines to learn more about CBD oil. At first I was cautious but decided to try it on Blaise. It was the best decision I could make! I was glad I ordered the CBD treatment. Despite the process of weaning him off of phenobarbital, the first dose of CBD oil made him more alert. Little by little, I got him off the phenobarbital.

Today, Blaise is seizure free and no longer taking phenobarbital. All thanks to CBD oil!”

Chat with Your Vet

Before implementing CBD oil in your dog’s routine, you should talk to your vet first. If your dog is struggling with a medical condition, you want to make sure you have the dosage right. And, you also want to ensure your dog is a suitable candidate for CBD use.

If your veterinarian isn’t familiar with alternative medicine, you might consider contacting a veterinarian who specializes in it. You can find an alternative veterinarian by searching the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association’s website.

 Try it Today!

CannaCanine is 100% organic and non-GMO, two qualities you should search for in any CBD oil to ensure maximum quality. CBD that isn’t organic could contain pesticides and herbicides, which could result in more harm than good for your dog.

CannaCanine only contains two ingredients- organic MCT Coconut Oil and Organic CBD Hemp Oil. This is another factor you should consider when searching for CBD oil for your dog. Generally, the more ingredients there are in the oil, the lower the quality of the oil.

Why is coconut oil included? Coconut oil increases the absorbency of the CBD oil. And, it can work wonders for our dogs. Coconut oil can help with itchy skin, eczema, cuts, scrapes, wounds, and hot spots. And, on top of all of that, it’s a powerful anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral.

I couldn’t wait to try CBD oil for my dogs after learning all the benefits. And, for a limited time, CannaCanine is offering a special promotion.

This year is the Year of the Dog, and to celebrate, CannaCanine is offering you 30% off of your store purchase. Start shopping now and use code YEAR before the deal ends!

 

*You can find this article on CannaCanine’s Blog here*

Written by Amber L. Drake, Contributor for CannaCanine

Heartwarming Video: Rescue Dog Fosters Dozens of Kittens — FACE Foundation

Zuca was a pregnant stray when she was taken in by an animal welfare agency in Oregon. All her puppies were adopted, and eventually so was Zuca. This sweet pup became best friends with a cat named Stout in her new forever home. Sadly, Stout passed away and Zuca was depressed…until her human mom Ronda […]

via Heartwarming Video: Rescue Dog Fosters Dozens of Kittens — FACE Foundation

Let’s Hear From You: What Do You Need?

Hello, everyone! I’m so happy you’re here. As you can see, the Dog Behavior Blog has been completely revamped. As I was sitting down to write an article for you, there are so many ideas popping through my head. But, before I write another article, I want to hear from you.

What do you need help with? What questions do you have? This is your opportunity to ask your questions, and allow me to address them in an article, or perhaps a series of articles, so you (and your fellow dog lovers) can learn more about their dogs.

As a professional in the industry, you sometimes skip over the most common questions. What’s familiar to you may not be familiar to someone ‘outside the box….’ if you know what I mean.

And, on top of your questions, is there anything you hope Canine Companions will offer in the future? Are you looking for a specific e-course, e-book, instruction sheet, recipes, etc?

Please feel free to submit a comment, or use the Contact Us page, to submit your questions, comments, and/or concerns.

I can’t wait to hear from you.

Amber L Drake

How CannaCanine’s CBD Oil Can Help Your Dog

As a Canine Behaviorist, I am continuously searching for new ways to help improve the lives of dogs and their families.

The most common ailments and illnesses I am approached with…? Anxiety. Separation Anxiety. Anxiety from cancer. Anxiety from new situations.

One of the products I have been learning about in the canine behavior and wellness field throughout the past several months is CBD oil. I wanted to learn as much as possible about the oil before recommending it to clients- and get some samples, talk to corporations, and professionals about the benefits.

When most clients hear the words ‘CBD oil,’ they are worried about their dog being “high” from the CBD oil… but dogs cannot get high from the CBD because it’s not psychoactive.

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of 113 compounds uniquely found in cannabis plants such as hemp. These compounds, called Cannabinoids,  are naturally found in the cannabis plant. Unlike THC, found in marijuana, CBD doesn’t contain any psychoactive properties or effects. The hemp plant naturally contains a higher percentage of CBD compared to marijuana plants.

So, How Does it Work?

CBD interacts with a system known as the ESC (Endocannabinoid System)… a system present in all mammals (yes, even us). The ESC regulates many different processes in the body; sleep, mood, anxiety, stress. And, like many other systems in a mammal’s body, there are receptors to regulate these.

CBD binds to the receptors in the ESC to help balance the systems in your dog’s body.

It’s like a puzzle piece. One puzzle piece fits into another to help your dog feel better.

CBD Helps Your Dog in Many Ways

CannaCanine’s CBD Oil is not only used to reduce your dog’s anxiety, but can also be used for the following conditions:

When a dog has the above conditions, generally some type of pharmaceutical drug is recommended. Pharmaceutical drugs are often not natural and your dog runs the risk of side effects (short-term and long-term).

CBD oil offers your dog (and you) a natural alternative.

CBD for Dogs with Cancer

CBD has been studied extensively to help dogs with cancer. CBD has been found to have an anti-tumor effect and stop cancer cells from growing. CBD blocks the energy given to the cancer cells and increases the effectiveness of other cancer treatments.

Dogs with cancer are commonly known to have trouble eating, too. As a result, your dog starts to lose weight and becomes lethargic. CBD oil helps increase your dog’s appetite and, in turn, assists in maintaining their current weight or getting him back to a normal, healthy weight.

We’ll talk about dog cancer diet ideas in another article. But, if you can get your dog’s appetite stimulated when they have cancer, that’s huge. That alone could provide your dog with higher life quality.

Think about when you’re not feeling well, but your stomach is rumbling because you’re so hungry. You’re uncomfortable. You’re probably miserable. Would you try a natural product to help stimulate your appetite and make you feel better?

You speak for your dog. And, she depends on you to make sure all of her necessities are taken care of.

Which Brand Do You Recommend?

As a professional in this industry, I am continuously sent samples of products for my clients. By far, the best CBD product I have been sent is from CannaCanine.

CannaCanine

CannaCanine is 100% organic and non-GMO. There’s 17 mg of  CBD per dropper.

CBD oil that isn’t organic could contain pesticides and herbicides, which could result in more harm than good for your dog.

On top of being the best CBD product quality-wise, for every bottle that’s purchased at CannaCanine, a free bottle is sent to Canine Haven Dog Rescue. If you make a purchase, and you would like a free bottle to go to a rescue of your choice, you can e-mail the organization to have the free bottle sent.

And, since it’s the Year of the Dog, CannaCanine has a special discount of 30% on all of their products.

What Ingredients Are in CannaCanine’s CBD Oil?

Unlike many CBD oils you’ll find, CannaCanine’s CBD Oil has only 2 ingredients; organic MCT Coconut Oil and organic CBD Hemp oil.

What are the benefits of the coconut oil? Coconut oil can work wonders for our dogs. Coconut oil can help with itchy skin and eczema in our dogs. And, if you apply coconut oil topically, it can assist in the healing of cuts, wounds, and hot spots. And, it’s a powerful anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-viral.

Wait… there’s more. Coconut oil also helps with digestive problems including inflammatory bowel syndrome.

You can see why their CBD oil is so powerful. And, why CannaCanine’s CBD oil is my oil of choice to recommend to my clients.

Frequently Asked Questions About CBD for Dogs

I’ve encountered many questions about CBD oil for dogs. And, I would like to address a few of them for you here. You might find some of the common questions have already been answered above. But, for those who don’t have time to read the article in full until later on, you can get a glimpse (but, make sure to come back and read the remainder of the article, it could really help your dog).

What is CBD exactly?

CBD is short for Cannabidiol. It’s the main compound found in cannabis plants. CBD doesn’t alter mental function, and it doesn’t get your dog high (or you, if you are interested in trying CBD for your anxiety).

Does it have to be used daily to work?

No, it can be used on an as-needed basis. And, is actually most frequently used as-needed rather than daily.

Is CBD legal in the United States?

Yes, CBD is legal in the United States. Any dog owner has the ability to purchase and carry CBD oil.

Do I Need a Prescription for CBD oil for my dog?

No, you don’t need a prescription for CBD oil.

 

The Bottom Line on CBD Oil for Dogs

CBD oil is generally a safe, healthy alternative to traditional pharmaceutical drugs. Instead of giving your dog Xanax, in my professional opinion, it’s at least worth a try to see if this natural oil could help your dog with his anxiety.

If your dog has a skin condition, why not try a natural oil before applying a pharmaceutical ointment?

More and more people are leaning toward natural alternatives to keep not only their dogs healthy and happy, but themselves as well.

If you’re still on the edge about CBD oil for your dog, take a look at a few of CannaCanine’s testimonials here.

You can also take a look at some of the videos people have submitted about how CBD oil has helped their dogs below:

Veterinarians and Dog Owners Recommend CBD:

CBD Gets Rid of Dog’s Seizure:

CBD Relieves Dog’s Anxiety:

CBD Oil Relieves Dog’s Pain:

Disclaimer: The following are the opinions of a Professional Canine Behaviorist. Prior to the implementation of any product, you should first consult your veterinarian to ensure safety. 

Should Your Dog Sleep with You?

Pets belong on the bed. At our house anyway, and at many of yours, I bet. In fact, surveys on the topic show that around half of pet owners let them sleep on the bed. As for us, our little guy Truffle starts out wedged between my pillows and my husband’s, but at some point […]

via Should You Let Your Pet Sleep With You? We Dug Up the Answer — PushUP24

Canine Veteran’s Day: How to Help

Tomorrow is Canine Veteran’s Day. And, here at Canine Companions & Dog Behavior Blog, would like to share some information about our canine veterans here. Please take a seat, and read/listen to the article.

You might even find your soulmate dog after reading this.

You’re going to want to grab your tissues before reading and watching.

What Do Dogs Do at War?

In war, our dogs are the first line. They are first to go into a dangerous territory. And, they let their handler know if it’s okay to continue walking, or to stop in their tracks.

Watch this documentary to follow dogs and their handlers through the tears, blood, and sweat during war in Afghanistan:

Robby’s Law: Saving Lives, Encouraging Adoptions

Before Robby’s Law was enacted in 2000, dogs who came back from war were euthanized. Now, handlers have the option of adopting their dog once they come back to the states. And, if their handler isn’t able to care for them… they are able to be placed for adoption.

Over 90% of canine veterans are adopted by their handlers at the end of their service. And, it’s not hard to understand why. Watch the videos below to see the strength of their love for one another.

To Show You How Special the Bond Handlers & Their Dogs Share

Army dog races into the arms of his handler three years later:

Veteran reunited with bomb-sniffing dog:

Military hero dog reunited with handler:

 

Adopting a Military Working Dog

Most of the MWD’s available for adoption are puppies, or relatively young dogs, who didn’t make it through the training (only about half graduate training).

There are occasionally older dogs who have been at war, though. They may have medically retired due to an injury, or retired due to their age.

It’s important to note that those dogs who have been to war often have PTSD- similar to our human soldiers.

Only recently have we learned that dogs can suffer from this condition following war times. These dogs have been exposed to everything we were- and potentially more- including gunshots, explosions, and other loud and/or violent experiences.

Symptoms of PTSD in dogs include:

  • Fear of noise
  • Fear of new situations
  • Avoidance or fear of buildings
  • Flashbacks

These can usually be managed, but they’re important for you to understand when considering the adoption of a dog from war.

Organizations to Contact About Adopting a Military Working Dog

You can contact the following organizations if you’re interested in adopting a military working dog:

United States War Dogs Association

Save-A-Vet

Mission K9 Rescue

Take Other Action to Help This Canine Veteran’s Day

There’s a petition going around to help canine veterans here. 

  • The petition changes the wording from “adoption” to “foster” in case a dog is placed into a police force after retirement.
  • The military handler becomes attached to the dog throughout his or her entire life; their name is on all paperwork, so they’re able to be with their dog forever if they would like to be.
  • And, if they aren’t with their dog, they are able to find out how they’re doing and where they are any time.
  • The petition also requests handlers be permitted to retire their dog if they don’t believe their dog is able to handle ‘the job’ any longer.
  • And finally, only the handler is able to agree and sign off on an adoption.