Sunday, January 6, 2013

Edit To Ruby's Diet

Hi all! I hope you had a fabulous Christmas and New Year!

Over the past few weeks I have noticed that something has not quite been right with Ruby, every other poop has been very soft, if not total water. A call to the vet has confirmed that this is not due to a blockage or bug, but her diet. The only issue was finding out what the cause of this mess actually was.

It has taken us weeks to rule out her treats, chicken, vegetables and most other things. Finally, I removed her morning serving of James Welbeloved complete dry food. Her stools have since hardened properly, and have been more regular. We used this food as it is free of most things that cause dogs issues, such as milk, and is hypoallergenic. Obviously, this is not the case for Ruby.

I believe that Ruby may be allergic to oats / oat flour. This would explain her reactions to the product when given in large quantities.
Since this discovery four days ago, her stomach has settled, she has more energy, and seems a lot more cuddly. Also, her amount of gas has vastly reduced.

This brand of dog complete feed is brilliant for my Dad's Malamute, Jess, but does not agree with my Siberian, Ruby. I believe it is different for every dog, and every breed.

Also, I previously mentioned that both Ruby and Jess were fed frozen meat packs from our local pet shop. Recently, both dogs have stopped eating this food altogether as the brand has added more fillers. Neither dog will touch it now, so this has also been removed.

Ruby does, however, receive around quarter a cup of the dried complete feed throughout the day as a treat to ensure that she is getting all the vitamins ect that she needs. This small amount does not appear to affect her.

Ruby's diet is now very similar to what she had before, but rather than biscuits for breakfast she has two chicken legs, and for dinner only one chicken leg with some mixed vegetables.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ruby's Christmas Fun...

So for Christmas, I took Ruby to visit my mum and her dog Cleo, the Rottweiler. This, I was dreading. Cleo is a laid back girl who likes to chill out and eat a lot. Ruby is nuts! I was nervous, and worried that it would rub off on my little princess.
In preparation for the big day, I bought new toys, a nice juicy bone, loads of poop bags and biscuits, and a shorter lead. I needed to have total control over Ruby at all times, as Cleo is easily agitated by younger dogs.
So, the day came, and Ruby unwrapped her presents and kept herself entertained for an hour. We then went for a two hour family walk, making sure to include loads of running and chasing. This wore her out, but only a little!
After a visit from my dad and brother, which involved lots of excitement for Ruby, my dad drive me and Ruby to my mums. The moment of dread.
Luckily, she was a star! Obviously, we had a little confrontation as it was Cleo's home and she needed to protect it. She quickly realised that Ruby was not a threat and decided to play and jump around for about an hour. A quick walk together sealed the deal!
For the rest of the day, they chilled and played happily together. I was such a proud mummy!
Later in the day, we were invited to Sam's mum's home, only a twenty minute walk away. This part of the day was not so good. Sam's old dog Toby, a miniature Jack Russell, did not react nicely to another dog in his home, and he became very jealous and aggressive. I worried that Ruby may react badly and try to defend herself, but she appeared none the wiser. It took an incredible amount of trust on my part, and I have to say I paid off.
I have a lot of faith in Ruby after her amazing behaviour, and we shall be visiting my mum and Cleo again tomorrow.

I am very proud of my little girl, and it just goes to show that a little faith goes a long way!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Ruby's Husky Diet...

This diet consists of Ruby's daily meals, and treats, including training rewards. This is approved by my vet, and Ruby's previous vet.

-One cup of 'James Welbeloved' chicken and rice biscuits.
-Quarter cup of mixed frozen vegetables. (Ruby prefers frozen food to cooked) .

-One 'Jumbone' or similar treat when leaving her alone.

-Two frozen chicken legs.
-Half pack of frozen minced whole meat dog food.
-Both served with quarter cup of mixed vegetables, or one whole carrot, chopped and raw.

SUPPER (upon return from evening walk, along with quarter cup black, weak, decaff tea)
-Quarter cup of 'James Welbeloved' biscuits.
-One turkey neck, from the butchers.

-'Misfits Scruff Bites' broken in half for training rewards.
-'Pedigree Cheesy Bites' as rewards.

Ruby is also walked four times a day.
-30 mins before breakfast.
-45 mins before being left, or at lunch time.
-45 mins before dinner, or on returning home if out for more than two hours.
-45 mins before settling for the evening, before supper.

It may seem like a lot of food for a little dog, but the portion sizes ensure that she is not being overfed, as do the long walks and rigorous training schedule we have set in place.

There is a lot of speculation surrounding chicken bones and dogs eating them. I have researched this both independently, and with my vet and we have discovered that when served uncooked and more importantly frozen, they do not pose a threat to dogs. When cooked, all bones splinter, making them unsafe for consumption. That is why Ruby is served frozen chicken legs, it is one of her favourite meals, and it means that she cannot rush her meals either, which leads to a lot of sick!

Dogs are natural scavengers, who will eat anything and everything they can. The key is to instil rules for your dog, so that they understand you are the boss, and they are not permitted to steal food. Don't worry, this is still an ongoing battle with our little madam.

Keeping Ruby Quiet When We're Out...

... Is a nightmare! She likes to chew, and unfortunately, we have carpets everywhere! She also likes to 'punish' us when we go out by messing in the house. This has led to us having to shut all the doors so she only has access to our (rather large) hallway when we leave.
Poor baby, she gets so bored! And she howls!
My dad, however, came up with a brilliant idea! He bought a 'Kong' toy from his local pet shop, a jar of peanut butter, and various sandwich spreads, including chicken and salmon. Luckily, Sam is allergic to peanuts, and neither of us will eat sandwich fillers!
You only need a small amount of whichever spreadable delight, and a few dog biscuit treats, all squeezed as deeply into the toy as possible, and a freezer!
The result, a cheap distraction, that makes a happy break from a bone, or large biscuit treat, which when frozen, takes a good two hours of gnawing and chewing to break in to, without damaging the toy as this is pretty much what they are designed for!
Obviously, this cannot be given too often, or with too much filling as it can be very bad for dogs when given in excess. But, Ruby loves it, and once a week, it becomes her favourite treat!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Moulting Season!

So almost overnight, Ruby started to moult, and BAD! It has been a nightmare because we have dark carpets, and her undercoat is white! Terrible! I've been hoovering day and night, to no avail.
Then, thankfully, my dad introduced me to the 'Furminator'. Best dog brush I have ever used!
They cost around £18 in pet shops, but can be a lot lot less online, shop around, get a great deal and you won't regret it! It has layers of combs in a comfortable handle just just whips the excess fur away! Check out the link below!

Bad Tummies and Bad Doggies!

So, since I have been back at work, Ruby has started pooping inside, making Jay a very unhappy girl. I think it's because of the change in routine, as I work in a night club.
I have tried everything to put her off. EVERYTHING! Lemon juice, vinegar, products from the pet shop, everything. She will only go on the carpet in the hall too, the other end of the house to the back door. Talk about frustrating! When I let her out, she just stands there, looking at me and mouthing off. BUT, she will go outside when we go for a walk. This has resulted in shutting her in whatever room we are in until she creates a fuss to go out and then we go for a nice walk.
A few days ago though, she went straight outside to do her business and started to yelp in pain! The poor girl was constipated.
That put her off for the day. After several trips to the vets, they were stumped. There was nothing wrong with her, no dehydration or intestinal problems, and no glandular issues either. Then he suggested a knob of butter! I thought he must be mad, but he is a Siberia specialist!
Voila! It worked! Within the hour, a nice healthy poop came out and she has been regular ever since.
A mad idea, but it worked!

N.B. You should always consult a vet first, there could be something seriously wrong, and it doesn't hurt to have peace of mind!

An Introduction...

My name is Jay, and I live with my Fiance, Sam and our eleven month old Siberian Husky, Ruby.
We adopted Ruby at ten months old, so we have not had her very long. We adopted her from my dad, after Ruby had a fall out with his 15 month old Alaskan Malamute, Jess. My dad adopted Ruby at seven months.
The poor baby has been pushed from pillar to post, coming from a family who had no time for her, or cared enough to make the time. She's a beautiful little lady, with a big heart and stunning baby blue eyes. She weighs in at around 24kg, stands around 60cm, and is a beautiful mixture of tan and grey.
My dad had already done a lot of work with Ruby, (he got Jess from a similar family when she was 8 months old, he's used to it) so she was mostly house trained and knew a little lead etiquette. She has also calmed down when it comes to food and stopped trying to steal it from your hands.
She is a complete live wire, but with alternating shifts at work for us, she is never alone, never neglected.
In this blog I will be charting and discussing our trials and tribulations with Ruby's training, and here to answer any questions about Siberian Husky's, or other big breeds, as chances are, I have had at least a little experience with them! As I said, my father has a Malamute, my mum has a Rottweiler, and has previously had German Shepard's, Bull Terriers, a Pit Bull Cross, Dobermans, and a Collie.
I hope you enjoy, and I hope I can offer a little bit of reassurance for those of you out there who are going through the hell that can be dog training!

Meet Ruby!