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Monday, December 2, 2019

How to put on a dog harness for easy walk

Some dog owners choose to use a harness rather than a collar on their dog to make him more comfortable or to reduce the chance that he will slip off the leash. There are three different types of harnesses to choose from, and they can each be tricky to put on. This step-by-step guide will give you all the information you need.

Standard Dog Harness

Different types of harnesses need to be put on in different ways. Let’s start with the steps for putting on a standard harness. A standard harness has one loop around the ribs, one loop around the neck, and a D-ring on the dog’s back to clip the leash to.
1. Stand, sit, or squat behind your dog and put him in a standing or sitting position. It is best to do this when your dog is calm.

2. Slip the harness over your dog’s head. Make sure the harness is positioned so the D-ring is on your dog’s back. The wider loop (the one with the buckle) goes on first, and the narrower loop goes on second.
3. Slip your dog’s leg through the first leg hole of the harness. The leg should now be in between the loop that goes around the ribs and the loop that goes around the neck.
4. Buckle the harness, so that your dog’s other leg is in the proper leg hole. If the buckle does not reach to allow you to close it, you need to loosen the strap.
5. Once the harness is buckled, adjust it so it fits properly. You should be able to slip two fingers underneath any strap. Try to pull the harness over your dog’s head to make sure that it is secure.

Step-In Dog Harness

Now, let’s look at the steps for putting on a step-in harness. The difference between a standard harness and a step-in harness is that the former forms rectangles around your dog’s legs, while the latter forms triangles.
1. Lay the harness flat on the ground, so that you can clearly see the two triangles. The buckles should be on top of the D-rings.
2. Hold your dog from behind and place his front feet in the two triangles.
3. Pick up the two ends of the harness and clip them together on your dog’s back.
4. Adjust the harness accordingly. Try to pull it over your dog’s head to make sure it is secure.

Front Clip Dog Harness

Last, let’s look at how to put on a front-clip harness. A front-clip harness has the leash clip in the front over the dog’s chest and is designed to discourage pulling. Some front-clip harnesses are shaped just like the standard or the step-in harness. If this is the case, follow the steps for those harnesses.
However, some front-clip harnesses have a different design, with one loop that goes around the ribs and a single strap that goes across the chest. There is no divider in between the dog’s legs. If this is the type of harness you have, follow the steps below.
1. Kneel to the right side of your dog while he is calmly sitting or standing.
2. Put the loop of the harness over your dog’s head. The harness label should sit on his left shoulder, and the metal ring for the leash should be at the center of his chest.
3. Reach underneath your dog’s belly and fasten the belly strap.
4. Adjust the harness to fit your dog. Make sure you cannot pull it over his head.
Some harnesses can be tricky to figure out, but they’re easy once you get the hang of them. The most important step is to make sure the harness is snug, but not too tight so that your furry friend is safe and secure.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

The Science Behind Calming Dogs With Sound

Extensive research has been done on the effects of sound and music on the human brain, but what about the effect it has on dogs?

“A few studies have been done specifically in dogs and other companion animals that support the beneficial effects of certain music on these species,” explains Dr. Mark Verdino, DVM, senior vice president and chief of veterinary staff at North Shore Animal League America.

Research Shows That Classical Music Helps in Calming Shelter Dogs

The most notable study—which looked into the effects of relaxing music for dogs in stressful environments—was performed by Dr. Kogan from the Colorado State College of Veterinary Medicine and published in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior.


“It evaluated the behavior of 117 shelter dogs exposed to classical music and heavy metal music,” says Dr. Verdino. “The study found a significant calming effect with classical music, while there was an agitating effect by the metal music; subsequent studies found similar calming effects with easy listening music.”

The Science Behind Calming Music for Dogs

Despite these promising results, Dr. Verdino points out that the effect of calming music for dogs is not fully understood. “Multiple areas of the brain are known to be involved in the process—the auditory cortex and multiple parts of the limbic system that regulates emotion,” says Dr. Verdino. “In human and animal studies, the levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) in the blood drops as a result of hearing classical music.”

Although scientists aren't sure why and how music affects the brain, they do know one thing: Relaxing sounds and music affect physiological processes in the autonomic system, according to Dr. Christie Cornelius, DVM, president and founder of

“The autonomic system controls both the fight-or-flight response and the rest-and-digest response,” says Dr. Cornelius. “Relaxed dogs, in general, have slower heart rates, rest more easily and are less vocal—similar to what the brain experiences during a rest-and-digest situation.”

Calming Dogs With the Right Tempo

A 2002 study conducted by animal behaviorist Dr. Deborah Wells shows that classical music helps dogs relax. The dogs rested more, spent more of their time being quiet, and spent less time standing than when exposed to stimulation such as heavy metal music, pop music and conversation.

Why classical music in particular? Because dogs seem to relax when exposed to music with a tempo of 50-60 beats per minute, says Dr. Cornelius. This usually includes classical music, reggae and some types of soft rock. “Classical music with a single instrument at a slower tempo has been especially shown to produced relaxed behaviors in dogs,” Dr. Cornelius adds.

On the other hand, Dr. Cornelius points out that faster-tempo hard rock and heavy metal music have been shown to cause an increase in restlessness, anxiety and agitation.

“Short, choppy tones tend to be more excitatory than long, continuous tones,” says Dr. Verdino. “Logic would say to avoid deep base tones and loud percussion as these are the types of tones that typically have an adverse effect of dogs—similar to the sound of fireworks, thunder, etc.”

If you are looking to help calm your dog with sounds, a good place to start is with the Pet Acoustics Pet Tunes calming music dog speaker. This speaker features 90 minutes of calming sounds for dogs.

Going Beyond Music

For dogs who are particularly anxious about being left alone, the Ruff Dawg Om Dawg Stress Reduction System could help. First, use the ball to tire your pup out, then play the soothing CD before you step out of the house.

The Calmz Anxiety Relief System for dogs might also be a good option. “The music portion of this product would certainly have a calming effect,” says Dr. Verdino. “Generalized pressure, as found with this product and other products like the Thundershirt, have also been found to have a calming effect too—similar to the swaddling of a baby.”