Does your Buffalo Grove dog jump on your guests?

18965871 - beautiful young woman with golden retriever

She doesn’t mind that her dog has jumped up. But, someone might come visit your Buffalo Grove home who does mind that your dog jumps up.

Your husband picked up your 64-year-old Aunt Lisa and brought her to the house so you could all drive to the wedding together. At only 5-feet tall, she looked spectacular in that brand new strapless cocktail dress. Everything was perfect until your son let Brutus, your 165-pound Rottweiler, slip past him and into the house. When, in his excitement, Brutus jumped on her, Aunt Lisa was knocked off her feet. And the dress? Oh my.

When your dog jumps on people, that’s a problem, especially if you have a large dog, such as Brutus. But, at the very least, it’s also a problem if you have a small dog. It’s a nuisance. It’s bad manners.

For a dog, jumping is a way of greeting someone, the way the dog would greet a member of its pack. Jumping is often accompanied by licking. If you hadn’t reacted fast enough, once Brutus had knocked Aunt Lisa down, Brutus probably would have proceeded to bath her face with his tongue.

Jumping is also a way that a dog demands attention. If someone allows their dog to jump, the dog will learn that jumping is OK; they won’t differentiate between those who don’t mind have a dog jump up on them and those who do mind. It’s your job to train your dog so that, when someone else comes to visit your Buffalo Grove home, they won’t be mauled by your friendly but intrusive dog.

How do you stop your dog from jumping?

Yes, you can train your dog to not jump on people, and here’s how:

  • Put your dog in a typical ‘jumping’ situation so you can teach them not to jump. You can do this with the help of a friend or someone your dog would customarily jump on. Have them stand a few feet away from your dog.
  • Put your dog on a leach and give them a command to ‘sit-stay.’
  • Have the target person walk toward your dog.
  • When the dog moves to greet your friend, they should walk away while you give a gentle tug on the leash to remind your dog they’re on a sit-stay.
  • When the dog sits again, your friend should start approaching the dog again.
    Rinse and repeat. In other words, do this repeatedly and your dog should get the hint.

Once your dog has learned the basics of how to politely greet people, practice with your dog whenever you have a chance. Over time, you’ll have people complimenting you on what a polite dog you have. In time, Aunt Lisa might even come back to Buffalo Grove to visit.

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Train your Arlington Heights dog – it’s a different world

train Arlington Heights dog

Arlington Heights is a great place to have a dog but all the more so if your dog is well trained.

Arlington Heights is a great place to live and a great place for dog owners. It’s centrally located near area dog parks, such as the Beck Lake Dog Friendly Area in Des Plaines, K-9 Dog Park in Schaumburg and Happy Tails Dog Park in Buffalo Grove. But, you don’t have to head out to a dog park to enjoy the summer with your dog, especially if your dog is well trained.

Living with a well-trained dog and a dog that isn’t trained present diametrically opposed experiences. Let’s suppose you’re taking your dog for a walk. If the dog is untrained, you’ll probably find yourself playing a running game of tug-a-war with a dog that wants to go where it wants to go and isn’t all that interested in what you think about the matter.

On the other hand, if your dog is well trained. If you took your dog off the leash (this is a violation of local ordinances – you need to keep your dog on a leash while walking on a sidewalk, street, alley or other public place), your dog will stick close by you and wouldn’t run if a herd of rabbits ran by (yes, a group of rabbits running together is actually called a ‘herd’).

Since you do have to keep your dog on a leash while out for a walk, the leash hang loosely between the two of you as it fulfills its legal requirements but is otherwise unnecessary.

If you enjoy surprises, an untrained dog is full of surprises. Think about finding a ‘pile’ on the carpet in the living room while your company is ringing your Arlington Heights doorbell. How about the surprise of discovering your dog has dug a hole in your new sofa and chewed up the legs of your kitchen chairs, your slippers, shoes, socks, prescription glasses or your child’s homework (yes, dogs really do chew up homework).

Then you have the dog with the jumpies. You’re talking on the phone and they’re jumping on you trying to get your attention. They knock over your toddler who has just learned to walk. When frail Aunt Anne is knocked off her walker, the 80-something woman won’t appreciate it and you’ll be worrying that she might be hurt.

The risk that an untrained dog may bite the postal delivery person, the neighbor’s kids or someone knocking on the door with political campaign flyers is real. Of course, you may not mind that they bite the political canvasser but there’s still that ugly matter of liability. And dogs don’t pay settlements – their owners do.

Even if your untrained Arlington Heights dog isn’t as bad as the dog described above, the experience living with a well-trained dog is so incredibly rewarding, it’s so much less work, there’s really no reason not to train your dog. You may want to try training your dog on your own but you may also appreciate the expertise of an expert to make the most of the process.

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Are you prepared if your Deer Park pet has an emergency?

Deer Park pet emergency

Are you prepared for a pet emergency in or around your Deer Park home?

You’ve probably considered what to do if a family member has an emergency but, when you count the family, are you also counting the family pet? There are many pets in Deer Park. They are loved and cherished members of their families. But, some people tend to take the health of their pets for granted.

You may think that your pet is indestructible. Be assured, they’re not. Pets can and do get sick. They also get hurt. The likelihood of a pet emergency is probably far greater than what you’ve considered. Now is a good time to give it some thought. You don’t want to wait until your Deer Park pet has an emergency before you prepare. That’s not preparing – that’s reacting.

There are several things you can do to prepare for a pet emergency, such as:

  • Collect emergency phone numbers in advance and put them somewhere you can find them quickly in a case of a pet emergency. This includes the phone number, and any other applicable contact information, for your veterinarian, emergency veterinary clinic and the Animal Poison Control Center. Here is the latter number for your convenience: 888-426-4435.
  • Collect and keep all of your pet’s medical history in a safe place. This should include vet visits and reports, vaccinations and breeding information. You may also want to store a duplicate of this somewhere safe so that, if the originals are destroyed or lost, you can quickly gain access to the duplicates.
  • Keep a pet emergency First Aid Kit in your home. A first aid kit should include:
    • Gauze for wrapping wounds
    • Non-stick bandages
    • Adhesive tape for bandages
    • Charcoal activated milk of magnesia (to absorb poison)
    • A digital pet thermometer
    • An eye dropper (for administering oral treatments or flushing wounds)
    • A muzzle (if your dog is in severe pain, they may bite. You can use a rope, necktie or other fabric in a pinch but don’t muzzle the pet if he or she is vomiting)
    • A leash
    • A stretcher (if you don’t have a dedicated stretcher, you can use a board, door or blanket to stabilize the pet for transportation)

Jim Carlson, a veterinarian with Riverside Animal Clinic of McHenry and Buffalo Grove, said that it’s imperative that you keep your head in a pet emergency.

“Try to make accurate observations of the pet’s condition so that, when you call a veterinarian or emergency vet clinic, you can provide them with the information they need to properly diagnose your pet’s needs,” he said.

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Why does your Zion dog bark and what can you do about it?

Zion dog barking

Barking? Who me? What would our neighbors here in Zion say if I was barking all the time? OK. Define ‘all the time.’


You’ve tucked the kids into their beds upstairs in your Zion home and you’re just about to slide into bed yourself. It’s at this inconvenient moment that your dog starts to bark. You pause, your legs already started under the covers. “Maybe he’ll stop” you tell yourself, more as a wish than a conviction. And, he does stop, for a moment. But, as soon as your head hits the pillow …

Why is your dog barking? Here are some likely reasons:

  • You’ve gone off to bed, leaving your dog alone, and now your dog is lonely.
  • Your dog has decided that it needs to go out to do its business.
  • Your dog has decided that this is the time to go out and play.
  • Your dog is hungry or wants some water.
  • Your dog heard something and is trying to warn you.
  • Your dog just feels the urge to bark.

The question is, ‘what can you do about it when your dog barks.’ If it’s annoying you, hopefully, it’s not bothering your Zion neighbors. If it is bothering those who live around you, it’s a more immediate problem than if it’s merely annoying you.

For some dog owners, when the dog barks in the middle of the night, they grudgingly get up and let the dog out. Then they go back to bed. At least, if the dog continues to bark, it’s not as loud as when the dog is in the other room barking. But, this makes it more likely your neighbors will notice, and not appreciate it.

How do you to stop your Zion dog from barking?

If your dog barks because it wants food or water, you can make sure it has someone before you go to bed, or you can feed it a few hours before bedtime. Leave a little water in its bowl.

You can also train your dog not to bark. This takes consistency and patience. Don’t lose your temper and yell at your dog. And don’t wait until 2 a.m. to train your dog based on his schedule. Teach your dog to recognize and understand what you want when you say, “Quiet.” When he’s barking, hold out a treat. But, don’t give it to him until he stops barking.

Give your dog some chew toys to keep her occupied. Some people will put a clock that ticks loudly in the dog’s area to provide a comforting noise that soothes its nerves.

Essentially, what you want to do is to figure out what is causing your dog to bark and remove or change it somehow. Of course, if your dog is barking because she thinks she hears someone breaking into your Zion home, maybe that’s a canine alarm system you could appreciate.

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Get those mats out of your Libertyville dog’s hair

Libertyville matts in dogs hair

A Libertyville Golden, such as this, has beautiful, soft hair. But, it’s a pain when he gets mats in his hair.

She takes Winston, her 3-year-old Golden Retriever, to Independence Grove Dog Park in Libertyville when she can. Most of the time, however, they walk to the prairie a couple blocks from their Libertyville townhome. And, boy, does Winston like to run. He runs. He barks. He chases happily after birds and squirrels.

Sometimes, Winston gets into the tall grass. If she’s not careful, after they’ve had a lot of rain, Winston also gets into some of the swampy areas. He seems to like this the most. Maybe it appeals to his hunting-dog instincts, not that she ever takes him hunting. He’ll spook some birds. He’ll have a ball. But she has mixed feelings about his romps in the weeds. Sticklers inevitably gather in his hair. Either way, matts are sure to appear.

She’s learned to deal with the sticklers and mats promptly. Keep in mind that the sticklers are the foundation for the biggest mats. But, however the mats start, with or without the help of sticklers, the longer they’re there, the larger and more tangled they become.

One way to deal with mats in your dog’s hair is to keep them out of areas that will tend to cause more mats. She could do this, but Winston loves running through the weeds so much that she hasn’t got the heart to stop him. Of course, mats will tend to appear in the coats of dogs with longer hair even if they avoid romping in troubled areas.

Assuming that mats are inevitable, what can you do about them? Here are some tips on how to deal with mats in your dog’s hair.

  1. Brush often. If you brush your dog, even when you don’t find any mats, you may brush out the foundation for future mats. Besides, your dog will probably enjoy the attention, especially if you make the activity fun. You can even reward your dog afterwards with a treat. Before you know it, your dog is liable to come to you, tail wagging, and the brush in its mouth.
  2. When you find the mats, be gentle. Removing mats from your dog’s hair is a tedious and time-consuming task. It’s often frustrating. Keep your emotions under control. Become good at taking them out without hurting your dog in the process. If you do hurt your dog taking mats out of his or her hair, you’ll probably find that you have to fight with them when it comes time to get the mats out.
  3. Collect the tools to improve your ability to deal with mats. A brush, a scissors, a metal comb, some spray de-tangler: these are some of the tools you’ll probably want on hand. But, among your most important tools, other than patience, are your fingers. Learn to use your fingers to pull the mats ‘gently’ apart. Pull them apart little by little. And, once they’re starting to come apart …
  4. Brush gently. When brushing, hold the hair so that it is slack between your fingers and the dog’s skin. Then, brush beyond your fingers. Remember, your fingers are there to buffer the pain for your dog’s sake.
  5. Time for a bath? Once you’ve taken the mats out, you may want to give your dog a bath. Use some dog shampoo. Rinse and ‘repeat’ – Not necessarily. Instead, you may want to use a conditioner to soften the hair. Then, after you’ve dried your dog with a towel, brush your dog.

If you stay on top of the mats, your dog will appreciate it. And, when you take your dog out for a walk on a Libertyville sidewalk, your neighbors are liable to comment about your dog’s beautiful, mat-free hair.

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Helping Paws holding Paw Crawl in Woodstock Square to support no-kill animal shelter

helping paws paw crawl

What are you doing Aug. 26? Why not come out to The Woodstock Square for the Paw Crawl to support Helping Paws Animal Shelter?


You’ve heard of a Bar Crawl, right? Well, this is the same thing except that it’s a Paw Crawl. And, while a Bar Crawl is often just for fun, the Paw Crawl is for fun and a good cause; it benefits Helping Paws Animal Shelter where they help homeless cats and dogs.

The Paw Crawl will start at 5 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 26, and last until 1 a.m. And it will happen in The Woodstock Square. As Helping Paws puts it, “Raise a Glass to Benefit the Animals!”

Helping Paws Animal Shelter provides “shelter, food, medical care, and comfort to abandoned, neglected, and abused animals until they are placed into loving, responsible homes.”

Helping Paws, a 501(c)(3) is also a ‘no-kill’ shelter. According to The Humane Society of the United States, approximately 2.4-million “healthy, adoptable cats and dogs” are ‘put down’ each year in shelters across the country. That works out to one every 13 seconds. For Helping Paws to operate as a ‘no-kill’ shelter requires additional financial support.

“Eighty-five percent of our dogs come from high-kill shelters,” said Sharon Bono-Fabian, a board member with Helping Paws and the coordinator of the event. “The majority come in with worms and some kind of kennel cough because they’re coming from such seriously bad conditions.”

Al Domrase, the owner of Aldens Kennels in Ringwood has also witnessed the terrible conditions of dogs that find their way into shelters.

“The way people in McHenry County love dogs and cats,” said Al Domrase, “it’s hard to understand why shelters are so overcrowded. The shelters, and the dogs and cats they care for, desperately need our support.”

The event in Woodstock is for animal lovers over the age of 21. There are two options for registrants: Raiser Your Glass registrants and DD-Designated Driver registrants. The early registration fee (before Aug. 12) is $45 and $30. After Aug. 12, the fees are $50 and $35.

Those who opt to raise a glass for needy dogs and cats will receive 5 drink tokens, a Paw Crawl t-shirt, koozie, shot glass, game care and a map. Designaed Driver registrants receive the same, minus the drink tokens. But, they can have all the free soda and water they want at participating bars and restaurants.

The registration form also provides an option to purchase additional drink tokens at $5 each.

The registration form is at:

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How much should you feed your Hawthorn Woods cat?

cat proper diet Hawthorn Woods

Are you feeding your Hawthorn Woods cat the right amount food?

Sunset Foods, Marino’s Fresh Market, Garden Fresh Market: it doesn’t matter which grocery store you go to near your Hawthorn Woods home, you know right where to find the pet food aisle. You’ve been there before, and with more frequency than seems to make sense. After all, you only have one cat. How much food can one cat eat?

No matter how many times you turn off Route 22 when returning to your Hawthorn Woods home, it always seems you’re greeted at the door by a hungry cat. You leave food for her but it’s always gone when you return. If you keep this up, you’re liable to have one of the proverbial Fat Cats on your hands.

Fat cats are kind of cute, in a way, but it’s not really healthy. And fit cats are often just as cute as fat cats. You’ll do your cat some good if you help your cat maintain a healthy weight. But, how much should you feed your cat if she’s always hungry? Should her appetite serve as the barometer for the frequency that you feed her or how much food you serve? The answer is most assuredly “NO!”

  1. Serve a healthy diet
    It’s possible to find healthy food in the grocery store but don’t assume all the food on the shelf is healthy. You may also want to speak with your cat’s vet to determine the best diet for your cat – whether you should serve dry food or canned. Even if it’s dry, you may want to add some water. And then, stick with the diet unless you see reasons to change.
  2. Provide measured portions
    Your cat’s vet can probably tell you how much to feed your cat. Once you have that target amount, don’t use the squinty-eye measuring system. Use an official measuring device. This will help so that, should you need to adjust how much food your cat receives, you’ll know the starting point.
  3. Monitor and adjust how much your cat eats
    Your vet can provide a BCS – Body Condition Score – that will tell you the optimal weight for your cat. With that target in mind, keep an eye on your cat’s weight. You can even weigh yourself without holding the cat and then while holding the cat. This can give you a fairly precise measurement of your cat’s weight. If your cat is gaining weight, reduce the amount of food you’re feeding your cat. If your cat is losing weight, give her a little more.
  4. Consider how much exercise your cat gets
    A cat that is active will burn more calories than a cat that prefers to lie around all day. If your cat is active, you may want to give your cat a little more food. Otherwise, you may give your cat a little less food. Once again, check with your cat’s vet.
  5. Consider changes as your cat ages
    How much food your cat needs will change as they age. Their metabolism is changing and, probably, so is the amount of exercise they get. Your cat’s age is a factor to consider when speaking with your cat’s vet. It’s also a point to consider, as you cat ages, with regards to adjusting how much food your cat eats.

A cat that is overweight is less likely to be an active cat. Instead, you’ll have yourself a cat that lies around your Hawthorn Woods home all day. A proper diet, with proper portions, is a gift of health you can give your cat that can help her to live a long and happy life.

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