Dear Doctor – A new housemate for a newly single man?

Q My son recently got divorced and has moved into an apartment by himself. He is now saying he's thinking of getting a dog, and I think it's a bad idea.While our family loves dogs and he had one all through his growing-up years, a dog at this point would just cramp his style. He needs to get out there with friends and start dating again — not run home from work to walk a dog.

Speed Eaters Anonymous

I feed my two dogs together, and the smaller one seems to gobble her food without chewing it and then throws it back up a few minutes later. Why does she do this?

She may be worried that if she doesnt wolf down her food, your other dog will get some of it. This is rational fear, but her coping strategy isnt ideal. How about feeding your dogs in separate rooms so the little one feels less pressured by the presence of the bigger dog?

Dear Doctor – March 2016

Better pacing during meals
Q My dog eats awfully fast. Should I be concerned? When people eat too fast, they get indigestion.
Clarisse Holstein
Basking Ridge, New Jersey

Dear Ms. Holstein,
A Dogs in general are members of the Clean Plate Club, and they often clean fast. It may have something to do with the fact that they have less than a quarter of the taste buds that people do. Why chew carefully and make an effort to really taste your food if the flavor intensity is not going to be that great no matter how hard you try?

Why Is My Dog Itching?

Chris Milsom is concerned. She and her husband adopted a beautiful and sweet five-year-old blue tick coonhound, Paige, in the spring of 2013. Everything seemed fine. It was not until almost two years later, in the winter of 2015, that PG, as Ms. Milsom and her husband call the dog, seemed to be scratching a lot all over her body, especially on the outside of her ears. She was also nibbling at the edges of her legs, and her ears.

The Best Vacuums for Getting Rid of Dog Hair

You keep hearing that the best way to rid your home of dog hair - and the dog dander that causes allergic reactions in some people - is to use the right vacuum cleaner. But the advice on which one to choose can get pretty confusing. The adbundance of makes and models alone is daunting.…

Deshedding Vacuum Attachments for Dog Hair

You dont necessarily need a new vacuum cleaner to keep your home more free of fur and dander. If your dog can manage the sound and the sensation, certain vacuum attachments that both groom and lift your dogs fur and dander can do much to keep your pet - and your home - clean. The shedding combs and brushes get to the root of the problem by pulling loosened fur, dirt, dander, fleas, ticks, and eggs directly from your pet into the vacuum. That leaves your dog clean, comfortable, and smelling much sweeter and your home tidier and more irritant-free. The attachments listed here are made to fit most vacuum models.

Dog Eared

[From Tufts November 2012 Issue]

The head of our Behavior Clinic, Dr. Nicholas Dodman, was stumped by the case of a Blue Merle Collie experiencing panic attacks several times a day, seemingly out of nowhere.

How often does it happen? he asked the owner.

There was no set answer. The woman explained that with no particular rhythm to the episodes, the dog, named (appropriately enough) Blue, would begin panting and pacing and even salivating. Then the bout would pass and, a while later, without warning, would happen again.

Dr. Dodman wondered if perhaps there was some kind of noise that could be causing the frequent occasions of hyper-anxiousness, but Blues owner didnt think so. She did offer, however, that whenever she and Blue went to her girlfriends house a few blocks away, and also when she left Blue there overnight, he never had the bursts of panic. Clearly, …

Dental Drill for Your Dog

[From Tufts September 2012 Issue]

Unfortunately, says Jean Joo, DVM, a veterinary dentist at Tufts, a lot of the dogs we see, the owner doesnt start brushing their teeth until something catastrophic has happened, perhaps the extraction of eight to 10 teeth. Thats when owners really get motivated.

Daily brushing makes all the difference, she says. One little Scottish terrier I saw - I cant remember how many teeth I had to extract from his mouth due to rampant dental disease. That was 16 months ago. Since then, the owner has been really diligent. I recently saw the dog for a check-up, and theres now not a speck of tartar, which is hardened plaque that harbors gum- and bone-eroding bacteria and can eventually lead to …

Protect Your Dog’s Paws

Its true that dogs dont need to wear shoes. They build up a tolerance for heat and cold on their paw pads and even rough terrain to some degree. But even though your pets paw pads are tough - they are, after all, composed of specialized thick, tough skin - they are not made of armor, as the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation points out.

Can skunk spray do more damage than just causing a bad odor on...

Skunks live throughout much of the United States, which means many owners of dogs, particularly dogs who feel that all moving creatures are either prey or must be herded, have experienced the unpleasant, super-pungent and noxious odor that skunks leave behind when they spray in self-defense. Some have described the scent as a mix of rotten eggs and burning tires. …

Dog dryer deaths prompt legislation

Two-year-old golden retriever Colby died from heat stroke at a Virginia Petco when his owner dropped him off for grooming. The employee taking care of him left for the day, forgetting that the dog was still in a kennel dryer. Scott and Elsa Wyskocils 17-year-old poodle, Curly, was essentially baked to death by a dryer in a California C&C Pet Food for Less shop, his body temperature reaching 109 degrees. And six-year-old Lhasa apso Sadie …

Which Dryer Is Right For Your Dog?

Following are a number of hair dryers meant specifically for dogs that should be used by hand - never attached to something that puts unrelenting exposure to hot air on your dog in one spot. You can use your own blow dryer, preferably one with ion technology that breaks down water molecules, drying hair faster without relying on heat. But you have to make sure to keep the heat at…