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Hip Replacement Surgery for Dogs

Hip replacement surgery for dogsDoes your dog have have hip dysplasia or other hip related problems with pain? Hip replacement surgery might be an option to consider to improve your dog’s life. It’s possible to have the damaged parts of the joint replaced with a prosthesis, just like with human hip replacement surgery. What a great solution option to help out our dogs in pain or reduced mobility get back to improved health!

The surgery involves removing the diseased diseased femoral head in the hip joint and socket (acetabulum) and replacing them with an artificial ball and socket joint. Each component of the artificial hip is made of cobalt chrome stainless steel or titanium and ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (plastic cup). The new prosthetic components are designed to allow the joint to move the same way as a normal hip. As with human hip implants, there are cemented and cementless total hip implants available.

hip replacement surgery for dogsThe goal of surgery is to return your pet to a pain-free, mechanically sound, normal hip function. Generally, dogs are found to be more comfortable and have an improved quality of life. Many owners report that their pet can do things they have not done since they were a puppy. Apparently post-surgery most dogs experience an increase in muscle mass, improved hip motion, and increased activity levels. The Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center claims that some “mean” dogs have even developed a pleasant personality when the pain was eliminated from their hip(s). “We have found that 95% of the hips that have been replace by surgeons at OSU return to normal function or near normal function. More than 95% of owners feel that their dog’s quality of life is improved or markedly improved.”

According to the Animal Medical Center, independent clinical studies show that 96% of pets who undergo total hip replacement surgery will return to full, normal function, typically within 6-10 weeks following surgery. In fact, they can walk on their new hip immediately following surgery.

Here’s a video about the procedure from the Animal Medical Center:

Doggie Doorbell by Pebble Smart

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The Pebble Smart Doggie Doorbell is a wireless doorbell with an extra large yellow bell so your dog can easily let you know he wants to go out or come back in (e.g. from your backyard). What a clever and convenient solution! It was designed to make it easier for your dog to communicate with you and to stop your dog from barking or scratching the door when he wants to go out or come back in. You don’t necessarily have to have a yard to use it. This type of bell system can also be convenient for urban apartment dwellers when your dog just wants to go outside. Luckily, it also has 36 different doorbell tunes so you can select one that you like.

The Pebble Smart Doggie Doorbell has a built-in treat holder, which is meant to help with training your dog to use the doorbell. When your dog smells the treat through the hole in the middle, he will naturally try to lick and nudge it, triggering the doorbell. Then you reward him with a treat. With repetition, he will associate nudging the yellow push plate with the pleasure of receiving a treat. After your dog can ring the bell on command, transition to rewarding him only after he rings the bell and has gone through the door. The people at Pebble Smart have put together several videos and training guides to help dog owners train there dogs.

pebble smart keithThe weather resistant Pebble Smart Doggie Doorbell can be installed without any tools. The adapter (i.e. yellow push plate) is mounted (e.g. on a wall) via the included mounting tape. The receiver (or chime) is placed inside the house. It has a long range signal transmission of up to 250 feet.

The Pebble Smart Doggie Doorbell was created by Keith Jin and inspired by his dog, Pebble, a beautiful and gentle Whippet. When Pebble started to scratch the door to be let in, Keith, not wanting to have his home destroyed, decided to find a solution. He devoted a year-and-half to research and design before perfecting a doorbell designed especially for dogs that is easy to install, easy to train with and use.

Want to learn about more new tech products for dogs? Check out our New Tech Products!

GoDogGo – Automatic Ball Fetch Machine

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Let’s Play Fetch!

A while back we wrote about the iFetch automatic ball launcher and fetch machine. Since then, we’ve discovered the GoDogGo. This is also an automatic ball launcher and fetch machine, but the advantage is that the GoDogGo allows you to use balls of all sizes – small, medium and large. It will also launch farther than the iFetch, which goes up to 30 feet.

GoDogGo is recommended for outdoor use due to the speed, height and distance of the ball launch. Of course, it really depends on how large your house is – are you in a studio or a 15,000 sq ft home? Apparently a pressurized or hi-bounce ball will have a minimum launch height of approximately 12 feet, but the machine can be adjusted to launch between 12 and 42+ feet depending on the ball type and size.

godoggoThe GoDogGo company suggests that if you plan to use it indoors, it’s preferable to use a heavy and/or hollow ball that is not pressurized as this will help to reduce the launch. Ball examples to reduce height/distance: Buddy Glow Ball–14′ distance & 6′ height; ProPenn Tip 2 trainer ball-18′ distance & 8′ height; Chuck it standard size Tennis Ball–11′ distance & 4′ height; Planet Dog RecycleBall–9′ distance & 6′ height.

godoggoThe GoDogGo Fetch Machine allows for 3 types of use; continuous automatic launching of balls every 7 or 15 seconds when the bucket is fully loaded, use with a single ball for independent play when the dog returns ball to the bucket; or the dog owner controls the experience by using a remote control. In manual mode using the remote control, a ball will launch at a minimum of 7 seconds or a longer which is determined by pushing the remote launch button.

The GoDogGo can be powered by either AC Adapter/110V or Battery Power/D Batteries. If using battery power, it will run for approximately 25 hours on 6 D batteries.

godoggoClearly, this is an awesome toy if your dog is crazy about fetch (especially when your arm is tired). Of course, you’ll have to train your dog with it as with any new toy and there are safety considerations, for example, your dog (and anyone else) should always stand a minimum of 2 feet from the front of the unit when the ball machine is turned on. You need to make sure your dog also retrieves to the right place, i.e. the bucket and not the launch pocket. However, with the right training, we think this would be a great gift for your dog and it could provide endless hours of play!

Dog Sitting Networks – When You Need Some Help

Rover_Travel_Stats_InfographicGoing away on vacation and can’t find a friend or family member to dog sit? Well worry no more.

Like Airbnb and Uber, there are a number of peer-to-peer platforms for dog sitting services that have popped up.

A while back, we featured DogVacay. There are two others we recently came across and wanted to highlight for you: Rover and DogBnB. Like DogVacay, they also offer a nationwide network of dog lovers that will take care of your dog from boarding to walking.

 

Rover

roverRover has both a web portal and app which allows you to easily find a sitter near you, book services and receive photo updates from your sitter. In addition to connecting pet parents with sitters, the Rover platform offers complimentary premium insurance for all services booked through Rover, 24/7 customer support, vet consultation and sitter background checks.

To use the service, dog owners browse the “search” section of the site or app for potential pet sitters, which can be organized by zip code and available dates. Sitter’s overnight rates are displayed in search results and prominently on the sitter’s profile page. In-depth profiles of pet sitters are provided, complete with multiple reviews, availability, specific services and rates. Currently, Rover has over 25,000 approved sitters in more than 5,000 U.S. cities. Rover states that 95% of reviewed stays have received a perfect five-star rating.

After selecting a sitter that fitrover searchs your criteria, just direct message a pet sitter on their profile to schedule a meet and greet, confirm services and payment. Rover calculates the stay price based on a nightly rate, like a hotel, but if you’re picking up your dog late, your sitter might want to charge a day care fee.

Rover pet sitters are encouraged to send text and picture updates throughout the day, and if there’s a medical emergency, the site guarantees 24/7 access to a vet. Don’t worry about a sitter canceling — you’re guaranteed a replacement if someone falls through.

Rover offers a large variety of services, but the four main types of services are:
• Overnight care at the sitter’s home
• Overnight care at your home
• Dog walking. Although walks are usually included in the nightly rate, you can often book dog walking as a separate service.

Rover also has “badges” which might better help you to select a sitter. We think the most important badges are the Background Check, Training and Rover Pack badges.

The Background Check badge shows that the sitter has completed a voluntary background check. Rover offers them as a way to assure you of the sitter’s credibility and reliability.

The Training badge means that the sitter has taken and passed the Rover Sitter Success Training quiz—and has demonstrated the skills and knowledge it takes to give your dog the excellent care you expect and deserve.

Rover Pack badge is a mark of the sitter’s expertise, experience, and attention to customer service. This badge ensures the sitter:
• Has completed at least 10 stays.
• Maintains an average rating (by pet owners) of at least 4.5 stars.
• Keeps their availability calendar up to date.
• Responds to at least 90% of requests within 24 hours.

Doggybnb

DoggyBnBDoggybnb works differently than Rover and Dogvacay. Instead of searching a database of various potential sitters, Doggybnb requires you to invite people from your social network that might be potential sitters. They call this your “Woof Pack”. In fact, they’ve created their own terminology to describe their services, so if you don’t remember the difference between a “Fetch” or a “Woof” they’ve put together a glossary.

DoggyBnB offers a range of services including Feed, Walk, Watch, Board, and House Sit. Rather than searching for a sitter when you need one, instead you’ll send out a request to your social network that you’re looking for a sitter, including the date, time and how much you’re offering to pay for the service. They call this request “posting a Woof”. The request gets pushed out to your friends in the social network, including friends of friends.

DoggyBnB 1Interested sitters respond (i.e. “Fetch”) your request (i.e. “Woof”). Anyone that responds is either a friend or people you are socially connected to (i.e. friends of friends). You can review profiles, how you are connected and ratings to help you choose a trustworthy sitter.

Once the care is completed, the app will conveniently send the sitter payment.

We like the idea that you’re using a network of friends and saving time by not having to individually contact people (i.e. just request once and it goes out to the “Woof Pack”). On the flipside, if no one responds to your request (i.e. maybe you don’t have a very large “Woof Pack”) you’ll still need to go out and search for a sitter.

DoggyBnB also has another feature to set up doggy playdates. “Sniffer” is a feature that allows dog parents to see an owner/dog pair in their proximity to set up playdates, make new friends and/or even find someone you might like (similar to Tinder). You can filter based on gender, age, doggy weight range and location. You can swipe right if you are interested in meeting the owner/dog pair, or left if you are not. If you both approve each other, you’ll get a notification that a match has been made.

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For full disclosure, we haven’t used Rover or Doggybnb ourselves, but they look like great service options. Have you used Dogvacay, Rover or Doggybnb? Let us know! We’d love to get your feedback!