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Wellness: Health Care
What Age is Your Dog in Dog Years?
Tips to help your oldster live long and prosper.

When it comes to figuring out when your dog’s officially a senior, the “7 human years to 1 dog year” ratio we’ve all heard about can’t be taken literally, since size, breed type and other factors influence the aging rate. However, with that in mind, many vets recommend beginning senior screenings around age seven to eight to establish baselines and catch potential health problems that may not yet have surfaced.

These baseline tests include complete blood counts (chronic inflammatory conditions, platelet problems, anemia and some cancers), serum chemistries (diabetes, liver conditions, kidney impairment, digestive problems, hormone imbalances) and urinalysis (kidney function and bladder health). Specialized screenings—EKGs; chest X-rays; and thyroid, glaucoma and blood pressure tests—are also available and are sometimes recommended, depending on your particular dog’s type and history. Establishing baselines helps your vet more easily detect potential problems as your dog ages.

Vets also recommend paying increased attention to the standard “maintenance” issues, including dental care, diet and nutrition, and weight and parasite control. If you haven’t already done so, talk to your vet about vaccinations. Depending on your dog’s lifestyle and local legal requirements, it might be time to reduce their number or frequency. As much as possible, keep your senior sweetie active and engaged in daily living. And finally, switch from an annual to a twice-a-year exam schedule—dogs can develop problems more quickly as they age, and a health issue that starts within a few weeks of a routine vet visit could develop into something more serious by the time the next annual exam rolls around.

Source: AAHA Senior Care Guidelines for Dogs and Cats

Good Dog: Activities & Sports
News on Dog Parks Across the Country
Good news on the OLA front

Across the nation, dog-lovers are working to provide more dedicated space for their pooches to run, play and socialize. Read about some of them here and be inspired!

Louisiana: New Orleans City Bark’s 4.6 landscaped acres, coming soon. The first official NOLA dog park, it will have a state-of-the-art off-leash area, walking trails, shade pavilions, benches and a separate small dog section. They’re hoping to raise $500,000, and they could use some help.

Massachusetts: Kudos to Pilgrim Bark Park in Provincetown, which had its grand opening on Nov. 25, ’08. The dog park’s supporters employed unique and creative approaches to raising funds for their OLA. The generous response of local businesses and artists—who contributed everything from a miniature doghouse to be auctioned off, benches, art in the park, and labor and building materials to a “drive by” coin toss/penny pitch installation—reflected the best of this Cape Cod community.

New York: Buffalo’s first OLA, the aptly named Barkyard, reopened in October ’08 at LaSalle Park along Lake Erie. Veterinarian Reed Stevens, who has been working on this for eight years, explains that the name denotes a “common backyard for dogs and their human friends—and brings people and their dogs together to improve our parks, our lives and our city.”

Oklahoma: Tulsa’s first-ever dog park opened its gates in August ’08. The Joe Station Bark Park, a converted baseball field, has generous opening hours: 5 AM to 11 PM Dog lovers are hoping this will be the first of many in their fine city.

Pennsylvania: Harrisburg’s Lower Paxton Dog Park anticipates its grand opening for Memorial Day ’09. The nearly 2-acre park will have all the amenities, including a nice shady section and separate areas for big and small dogs. With land donated by the township, and the Pennsylvania Conservation Corps slated to do the fencing, the dog park association is busy with fundraising.

Washington, D.C.: Just in time for the First Dog, the first official (and legal) dog park opened on Nov. 20, ’08. The 15,000-square-foot enclosed area is located in the city’s Shaw neighborhood; registration is required, so for now, the park isn’t accessible  to outside visitors. Groundbreaking for another new park—the S Street Dog Park—took place in February ’09.

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February 23rd 2009

More smilers every week! See more on our smiling dogs page.

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February 16th 2009

More smilers every week! See more on our smiling dogs page.

26_51
February 9th 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. It is important to include your name/address in the message. If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

26_51
February 2nd 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. Your smiler might find a place in the magazine or even in our new smiling dog book. It is important to include your name/address in the message.

If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

26_51
January 26th 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. Your smiler might find a place in the magazine or even in our new smiling dog book. It is important to include your name/address in the message.

If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

26_51
January 19th 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. Your smiler might find a place in the magazine or even in our new smiling dog book. It is important to include your name/address in the message.

If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

26_51
January 12th 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. Your smiler might find a place in the magazine or even in our new smiling dog book. It is important to include your name/address in the message.

If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

26_51
January 5th 2009

24 New Smiling Dogs every week!! E-mail your photo to us, be sure to include your dog's name in both the subject line & as the title of the photo. Your smiler might find a place in the magazine or even in our new smiling dog book. It is important to include your name/address in the message.

If you don't have a photo of your dog smiling, we have other contests for you to consider. Click here for more details.

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