Dog Park Behaviour

Leroy loves to go to a particular dog park that I don’t like. I always grimace as I walk in the gate but Leroy smiles from ear to ear. I like to call the dog park the “Dirt Bowl”. There is only one undercover seating area which has an uncomfortable atmosphere around it and often its the unfriendly regulars who have claimed the bench and table. The dogs always fight to climb up onto the table to have the top dog position in the park and there is always a certain tension of a dog fight about to happen.

Needless to say I don’t like the people there and I often find the dogs to be manic, unfocused, aggressive and bored.
One day I rode down to the Dust Bowl with Leroy and rode around the small inside boundary track of the park. I had all the dogs following me and all the owners looking at me bewildered while they sat on their butts. All the dogs loved it and they ran and ran and for a little while the dogs had some sort of purpose in the park other than to hang around their seated owners and fight for the top dog position on the table.

Most of the dogs in the “ Dust Bowl” are bored and I believe dogs can be become bored with dog parks. They may not be on their dog lead but the dog park is just like a backyard only a bit bigger sometimes. I simply don’t think it’s enough stimulation for a back yard dog to go to a small dog park for an hour or less a couple of times per week with an owner who does not interact with it nor pay the dog any attention. Is it always held close to you so you can grab the dog collar if it seems to get too close to another dog. Yes the dog is getting out, yes it’s socialising but is it enough? I don’t think so, dogs need more than a small dog park for stimulation.

Most people consider dog games to involve a dog chasing a ball or stick but games don’t just have to involve throwing something to them to fetch, dogs need mental exercise too.

Dogs are smart and they need to exercise their intelligence. There are some great games to play with your dog that don’t really involve too much effort on our part, which is good if you don’t have a lot of time. I love to play the Where Is It game with Leroy and Madison. I simply take one of their favourite toys and hide it somewhere in the house or back yard and they just have to find it. Sometimes it can take them ages to find the toy or object but they keep searching and using their brain to find it. Now days you can buy lots of dog toys where food can be hidden and the dogs need to work out how to get the food out again and have to use their brain to work out what the best method of extraction to apply.

Simple training is a great way to mentally stimulate your dog. Teach them something other than sit, lay down or stay. Teach them to crawl on their belly or roll over. Teach them in a manner that’s fun for them to learn and of course be patient.A really easy and simple game is to put some dry food in one hand, show your dog which hand it is in, put your hands in front of them and ask them to find the food. Keep mixing which hand has the food in it and you will make their brain work to try and find the right hand with the food in it. While you do this you can also teach them to wait until you are ready for them to start to play the game.
I play a game with Leroy in the car called “Where’s the dogs”. I ask Leroy if he can see any dogs. He instantly looks around and tries to find any dogs walking or playing as we drive by. I have taught this game over time and now he will actively seek out dogs when I ask him and I can see he enjoys this observation game.

I am always making up new dog games to keep it fresh and interesting for them. I discovered they love it when I hide around the house or garden and they have to find me, it’s really simple for us but a huge amount of joy for them.

Please don’t be one of those boring dog park people who sit and ignore their dog, play some games with your dog while you are in the park, hide the ball from them, get them to find the treats in your hand or around the park.
Help your dog to learn to think and gain confidence because it’s really easy to do and you will be rewarded with a happier and more intelligent dog friend and you won’t look so boring at the dog park either.

House sitting dogs is a big responsibility

I wanted to share with you my pet sitting nightmare. A friend had asked me to look after their family farm for a week while they all went skiing. The farm consisted of five horses, two cats, three dogs and a hundred acres of land.
A few days into the stay I took all the dogs for a big doggy day out. We went to a few parks and all had a lovely drive together and a great dog day was had by all including myself. I returned home and fed all the dogs and noticed one of the dogs, the Rottweiler seemed to cough a little after he ate his meal. His cough rapidly turned into gasping and within seconds the dog had dropped dead before my eyes. I tried to do what I could but nothing changed the fact that the dog who was alive and happy only moments before and was now dead.

There are no words to describe what I was feeling in that moment but I’ll try. I felt devastated, shocked, panicked, mortified and horrified. I was alone, help was not on hand and I was responsible for the welfare of all the animals placed in my care for that week.
I rang the vet immediately and tried to form my words through giant sobs. They said they would be out as soon as they could to take the dog away and also do an autopsy.
The next phone call was the hardest call to make. I had to inform the owner their dog had passed away. Again through giant sobs and stuttering words I told him what had happened. He was the brother of my friend and it was his dog I was looking after. I did not know the brother too well but his instant response was to get very, very angry with me and slam the phone down. Instantly the phone rang again and the owner hurled more abuse at me and said he would be back the following day.               I had never been in this situation before and I had no idea how to deal with the huge amount of emotions I was feeling.

Thoughts raced through my head, had the dog eaten something poisonous, did it choke on the meat, did I not cut the meat up enough, did the meat have a bone in it, had it been bitten by a snake in the long grass at the park, was it me, did I do it somehow, what went wrong?
Awful horrible thoughts and none had an answer, each question lead to more questions and each did not resolve the fact the beautiful creature was gone.
Eventually the vet arrived and it was finally good to have another person there to talk and cry with. He happened to be the most kindest and lovely vet I had ever met.
After many cups of tea he took the dog away and I was left only with my emotions and the dread of the owner returning the following day.
My heart was absolutely pounding in my chest when I saw the car entering the drive way, my friend and his brother had returned. No words were spoken when the brother laid his eyes on me he simply grabbed me, pulled me into a hug and we sobbed together for what seemed like hours.
Eventually we spoke about what had happened and how devastated we both felt.
A few days later the vet contacted me and advised me the dog had had a massive heart attack and there was nothing I could have done to save him.

The reality is when pet sitting bad things can happen. I now know the magnitude of helping out a friend with their pets and no longer take pet sitting as lightly as I did. There needs to be a discussion about the “what ifs” should something happen, what if they get lost, hit by a car, stolen or sick.
Simply leaving a vets number is not enough.

It’s important to have other information:

– If something unfortunate happens to their pet are they prepared for you to make the decision to operate or euthanize, if they are un-contactable.
– Do you have family member contact numbers to help you if the dog/animal goes missing.
– Do you have local council phone numbers
– If there pet passes away do they want to cremate or bury their per. (If they want to bury their pet it will mean finding suitable storage of the animal until they return. Best to contact the vet for advice)

-If they want the pet cremated do they want it in a pet cemetery or would they like to keep the ashes.

– For un-desexed dogs, what happens if they fall pregnant in your care. Will you be held responsible for the vet bills. (neighbourhood dogs will jump six metre fences to get to a bitch on heat)
– If the dog goes missing will you be responsible to pay the claim fee from the council should the dog be found by them.
– Do they have areas in their yard where their dog could escape that you need to look out for.

Often the pet sitter is given a flurry of commands by the pet owner while they race out the door to their holiday or given a hand written sheet and have to decipher the instructions.
I recommend meeting the owner of the pet you will be looking after approximately a week before you start pet sitting. Ask the owner about the fine details such as the animals routine, where they are fed, how much they are fed, what they are fed, where they sleep, where the local parks are, walk times, where’s the dog leads, and dog collars (etc).
It’s at this meeting you need to ask the hard questions and don’t be afraid to ask.
Having clarity about what to do should the unfortunate happen, you will be prepared, know what to do and what you will be responsible for.

Good communication is they key to successful pet sitting.

Does your dog style stand out?

Stand Out From the Crowd with your dog

I often see a dog with a nylon rope for a dog lead – the sort of rope people use for a trailer tie down. It has numerous knots in it and I’m sure it cuts into the dogs throat when it goes for a walk because the dog likes to pull heavily on the lead.

Another dog I see has a big studded dog collar and I wonder how comfortable it would be for the dog. Surely the long studs would stick into it while it scratched itself or just be uncomfortable to properly rest it’s head on the ground because the studs are so long it would hold the neck up and out of position.

I see tatty, ripped, boring, falling apart dog leads and dog collars on dogs everywhere. My favourite off-beat dog collar was a t-shirt that needed to be used when the half chewed lead finely snapped while they were on an adventurous walk.
Little do they know they are my inspiration to change the boring dog collar culture!

I love Leroy and Madison’s dog collars being a talking point at the dog park. I mix up my dog collars and people have asked me how many I have. Being the Creative Designer for Leroy Madison I could basically have a different dog collar for every day of the week for both Leroy and Madison.

I enjoy seeing peoples reaction to the dog collars. Some admire from afar and others have to get in for a closer look, almost as though they can’t believe that a dog collar could be so beautiful.

I am proud to say Leroy Madison has started a quiet revolution in the dog park. I’m seeing more and more of our designs on dogs. I often walk into a conversation at the dog park about the lovely dog collars the dog owners have. I smile quietly to myself and know the boring dog collar culture is finally starting to change. Bring it on I say! A world of beuatifully designed high quality pet products that nurture our pets and match our lifestyle choices.

Dogs help breakdown human barriers

Dog Interactions helping us to breakdown those shy human barriers.

In the distance I could see the most beautiful rich black and fluffy Newfoundland, so fluffy I couldn’t see his dog collar even though he was wearing one. I went straight up to it resisting my desire to throw my arms around it and get a big *Newfi hug.
I would like to think I politely interrupted the table of eight to ask if I could pat the dog but I am sure I was more like a storm trouper and demanded instant attention.

While patting the Newfoundland I became aware of the whole table looking and smiling at me. In that moment we were all connected in admiration of such a beautiful and regal dog. I had totally interrupted their morning coffee but in that moment it was OK and a conversation started between us all. A short conversation about dogs, coffee and friends, it lasted for no more than a few minutes. I had one more pat and cheekily snuck in a “Newfi” hug, wished them a lovely day and off I went.

While walking away I thought about the interaction and how amazing it is that dogs have the ability to unite us. They do so in such an subliminal way that its easy to overlook the beauty of such interaction’s they create between us humans.
If a dog had not been at the table I definitely would not have approached them, why would I?

Dogs manage to drop the barrier between the awkwardness of the first introduction in human interaction. How often can you walk up to someone and have something instantly and obviously in common. A direct introductory topic is already there, smiling, panting at you both encouraging you to connect.
Dogs do it so simply, a happy run up to you in the dog park, inciting a look to the owner and instantly a human connection is made but not only that a connection is made to a creature who makes no judgement but offers something to you, some kindness that is hard to find but somehow it fills up the emptiness and makes us feel good.

Dogs unit us and dogs are able to remind us to interact with others. Its a good thing as life seems to be getting more isolating but the dogs are there reminding us that we are social creatures and we strive on social interactions. You’ve got to love that about dogs, I certainly do.

*Newfi Hug – Is one of the best dog hugs you can ever get. Newfoundlands are the dog versions of a bear minus the teeth and claws. Very gentle, loving dogs and hard to resist asking for a pat and hug when you see one. I wander what sort of dog collar design we could do especially for a Newfoundland. Or maybe a special dog lead that suits your tall stance.

All about Dog Breeds

We have started to pull together the world’s entire list of dog breeds, even new designer dog breeds.

Over time we will be linking up the different breeds with their recommended dog collar size, dog lead length, dog bed size and their dog clothing sizes.

If any dog breeds are missing feel free to email us and we will add the breed to our list.

  • Affenpinscher
  • Afgan Hound
  • Aidi
  • Airedale Terrier
  • Akbash Dog
  • Akita Inu
  • Alano Espanol
  • Alapah Blue Blood Bulldog
  • Alaskan Klee Kai
  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Alpine Dachsbracke
  • Alpine Spaniel
  • American Alsation
  • American Akita
  • American Bulldog
  • American Bully
  • American Cocker Spaniel
  • American Eskimo Dog
  • American Foxhound
  • American Hairless Terrier
  • American Mastiff
  • American Pit Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • American Water Spaniel
  • Anatolian Shepherd Dog
  • Anglo-Francais de Petite Venerie
  • Antebellum Bulldog
  • Appenzeller Sennenhund
  • Argentine Dogo
  • Ariege Pointer
  • Ariegeois
  • Armant
  • Armenian Gampr dog
  • Artois Hound
  • Australian Bulldog
  • Australian Cattle Dog
  • Australian Kelpie
  • Australian Shepherd
  • Australian Silky Terrier
  • Australian Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog
  • Australian Terrier
  • Australian Black and Tan Hound
  • Austrain Pinscher
  • Azawakh
  • Barbet
  • Basenji
  • Basque Shepherd Dog
  • Basset Artesien Normand
  • Basset Bleu de Gascogne
  • Basset Fauve de Bretagne
  • Gascon Saintongeois
  • Grand Basset Grivvon Vendeen
  • Basset Hound
  • Bavarian Mountain Hound
  • Beagle
  • Beagle-Harrier
  • Bearded Collie
  • Beauceron
  • Bedlington Terrier
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael)
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog (Laekenois)
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog (Malinois)
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog (Tervuren)
  • Bergamasco Shepherd
  • Berger Blanc Suisse
  • Berger Picard
  • Berner Laufhund
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Bichon Frise
  • Billy
  • Bisben
  • Black and Tan Coonhound
  • Black and Tan Virginia Foxhound
  • Bulldog Campeiro
  • Bullenbeisser
  • Bully Kutta
  • Black Norwegian Elkhound
  • Black Russian Terrier
  • Blackmouth Cur
  • Grand Bleu de Gascogne
  • Petit Bleu de Gascogne
  • Bloodhound
  • Blue Lacy
  • Blue Paul Terrier
  • Bluetick Coonhound
  • Boerboel
  • Bohemian Shepherd
  • Bolognese
  • Border Collie
  • Border Terrier
  • Borzoi
  • Bosnian Coarse-haired Hound
  • Boston Terrier
  • Bouvier des Ardennes
  • Bouvier des Flandres
  • Boxer
  • Boykin Spaniel
  • Bracco Italiano
  • Braque d’ Auvergne
  • Braque du Bourbonnais
  • Braque du Puy
  • Braque Francais
  • Braque Saint-German
  • Brazilian Terrier
  • Briard
  • Briquet Griffon Vendeen
  • Brittany
  • Broholmer
  • Brun Jura Hound
  • Bucovina Shepherd Dog
  • Bull and Terrier
  • Bull Terrier
  • Bull dog
  • Bullmastif
  • Bully Kutta
  • Cairn Terrier
  • Canaan Dog
  • Canadian Eskimo Dog
  • Canadian Pointer
  • Cane Corso
  • Cao da Serra de Aires
  • Cao de Castro Laboreiro
  • Cao Fila de Sao Miguel
  • Carolina Dog
  • Carpathian Shepherd Dog
  • Catahoula Cur
  • Catalan Sheepdog
  • Caucasian Shepherd Dog

Superfetch Dog TV Show dog training

Superfetch dog tv shows features on the Bio Channel. It’s a 30min tv show that visits dog lovers in there home or working dogs to feature their dog training escapades and of course it’s about dogs in general. With the help of pet trainer Zak George dog owners learn the tricks of the dog training trade. Zak has the most beautiful dog training partner – Venus who assist with dog training stages. Starting with simple tasks like fetching the tennis ball and building up to focusing on finding the TV remote! How handy would that be? Although Leroy has a tendency to drool too much, and Maddie would most likely want me to start throwing it for her. Of course we have noticed that a lot of the dogs on Superfetch would look so much funkier with a designer dog collar or Leroy Madison designer dog lead.

If you are one of those people that have a gorgeous dog to help you pick up possible dates at the park, then Zak & Venus will take you paw by paw through some sneaky ‘i’m so cute moves’ up to having your dog jump up on your back & shoulders and pose there! OK, so sometimes the show is more focused on dog tricks than dog training and can get a bit silly, but it is fun to watch dog owners embarrass themselves on national tv. Overall Superfetch is a lighthearted and fun dog training TV show. However for the more serious enthusiast looking for some amazing breakthroughs with aggressive dogs, or anxious dogs we still highly recommend Cesar Milan the one and only great Dog Whisperer.

Superfetch features on the BIO channel on Saturdays afternoon, approximately 5.30 in the afternoon. It was originally produced by Animal Planet so will repeats can sometimes be found there. At this stage it’s unknown whether more seasons of this lighthearted dog training tv show will be made. We’ll keep an eye out and let you know if it’s being released again soon.

Production House: Animal Planet. For more information visit: http://animal.discovery.com/tv/superfetch/

2012 Super Bowl Dog TV Commercials

When the USA Superbowl TV commercials are following a consistent theme you know that theme is a hit topic amongst the public. This year dogs have featured among quite a number of Superbowl TV commercials. Why? Well, because the love of dogs as part of the household family has really solidified over the last few years. One reason for the popularity is National Geographic TV series featuring Cesar Milan in the Dog Whisperer. It is also because we are becoming more conscious of the overall well being of pets in society through activism and magazine new reports.

Trends of dog popularity growth over the last decade have also vastly changed. The USA dominates with the highest number of dogs in a household with Australia coming in a close second and England third. Of course us Australians love our dogs, our working dogs, our foo foo dogs, our back yard dogs, and even the dogs the lie on the lounge 😉

Below are some of our favourite 2012 NFL Superbowl TV Commercials featuring dogs. enjoy!

Suburu Vehicles:

I’m sure Leroy would love one of these but there’s no one I’m letting him drive. Madison, being a bush bred Kelpie would very much like a ute or something a little less city.

Volskwagon The Dog Strikes Back – a two part commercial. The teaser first below is a chorus of dog barking. Someone has a funny sense of humour:

The second, well hopefully it inspires your dog to get fit.

Dorito’s Dog Park is a bit kooky but entertaining none the less.

Sketches sneakers show how fast a pumped up french bulldog can goooo

Suzuki even has one this year featuring dogs

Check out a couple of our favourite Australian TV Commercials starring dogs

Dog TV Show Reviews

Happy Akita DogAt Leroy Madison we love to watch documentaries, T.V shows and movies about dogs.

It’s amazing the number of dog documentaries that have been produced, particularly over the last ten years.

It seems there is a genuine interest in human and dog relationships and with the amount of dog movies and documentaries this certainly does seem the case.

We are busy reviewing some of our favourite dog shows for you, there are so many to watch but we aim to review as many as we can for you.

We are gathering links to free online dog shows or free online dog movies. We would love to hear from you if you can recommend any to us.

 

 

Red Dog Film Review

 

The new Australian film “Red Dog” continues to grow week after week in cinemas. ‘Koko’ the kelpie from Geelong in Victoria plays the leading star – Red Dog. He is a beautiful chocolate kelpie who was dyed red, washed, blow dried and groomed to look oh so good. Typical leading star!! Koko is still making appearances at Film Festivals and special locations so keep an eye out for him in your area.

If you haven’t seen the film yet, you deserve to see it on the big screen. The backdrop of West Pilbara in the 70s is colourful in the scenery and especially the characters in Red Dog the movie. The film is stemmed from French author Luis de Bernieres book, also named “Red Dog”. It’s a great Australian yarn taking you through the full gamut of emotions. And of course we absolutely love Red Dog’s specially engraved dog collar in the film.


Have you seen Red Dog? Did you know that Maddie met Koko at the Casterton Kelpie muster this year? If it wasn’t for Koko’s popular red coat and Maddie wearing an elegant designer dog collar it would have been hard to tell the difference between them. It was great to meet the producer Nelson Woss and Koko at the muster months before the film Red Dog was released in Australia. Mr Woss was very friendly and told the story of how he’d been working for years to get the film made but filming was the shortest part. We’d love to make a dog collar and dog lead for Koko so if you ever read this koko, give us a call 😉

Red Dog is not just an Australian film but one of the best dog films ever made for everyone to enjoy.

 

Stars: Koko (the kelpie), Rachael Taylor, Josh Lucas and Noah Taylor
Genre: Family comedy & Drama
Duration: 92 min
Release: 4th August 2011
Director: Kriv Stenders
Writers: Louis de Bernières, Daniel Taplitz
Producer: Nelson Woss

 

Eight Below Film Review

The Huskies and Malamutes dog film stars are just amazing!! Smart, beautiful and funny. This dog movie is a classic Walt Disney family movie. The story is based on true events in the Antarctic after an expedition gets pulled due to a major storm just before winter sets in and no travel is allowed. Jerry Shepherd the sled dog trainer is played by Paul Walker, and the love and respect for the dogs is well represented.

It’s great how the breadth of the Husky breed is represented so well in the pack. However, what’s not common knowledge is that the dogs the dog film is based on were actually Akitas and not Huskies nor Malamutes. While it’s most likely Hollywood didn’t have an Akita dog pack this for the film, it is a shame this little fact is misrepresented. In fact a few attribute the survival of the dogs in the Antartica to the fact they were Akitas utilising all their strength and fighting skills.

The depth of this story is with the dog characters, their pack relationship and challenges. The trainers must have had a field day looking for all the right dogs to play the lead roles, Maya and Jack. Oh I just love them! The patience a trainer must have is so commendable. Well done to head animal trainer Mike Alexander of Birds & Animals.  Story goes that in order to get the right representation of dogs the trainers actually ended up using a number of rescue dogs because they already had that will to survive and were so easily trainable. The huskies would look fantastic in Leroy Madison dog collars and dog leads!
Genre: Family Drama
Released: 2006
Director: Frank Marshall
Stars: Paul Walker, Jason Biggs, Bruce Greenwood, Moon Bloodgood