Dog Vocabulary Lessons – Speak! – They Really Do Get You

Dog vocabulary includes not just actual words but understanding intonation and meaning as well. A large golden shown playing with a toy as directed by his owner
Dogs understand more than just our words. They grasp our intent when we speak to them.

Guess what. Dog vocabulary lessons are for real. Your dog has an incredible human vocabulary. Not only that, if you say words like “good dog” in a neutral tone of voice, they still get you.  Dogs can also understand tone of voice and how it relates to words. If you say “good dog” in that happy excited voice, it gives even a bigger effect. Of course, if you say “Let’s go to the vet” in an excited tone, your dog will likely not be fooled. They understand the learned words. Dogs have an incredible understanding of what you say and how you say it. Read on to learn what we now know about dog vocabulary and language skills.

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Pet Ownership – Health Benefits for Children

A golden retriever dog sitting next to a girl representing how pet ownership helps reduce anxiety in a child
Pet ownership can help reduce anxiety in children.

A pet dog can provide love and companionship to children.  Researchers recently found in a study that pet ownership may also boost kids’ mental health.  Our children’s health in modern society is of great concern.  Obesity, inactivity, anxiety, mental health issues, and stress are problems our kids face. They can begin in childhood and persist throughout life.  These problems appear to be more common today than in the past.  Interacting with a family dog may help to reduce these worrisome trends and provide our children with more balanced early years of development. Continue reading “Pet Ownership – Health Benefits for Children”

Tick Carried Diseases – The Growing Threat

picture of a white footed mouse that is able to carry ticks and tick carried diseases
The white footed field mouse can carry upwards of 50-100 ticks that transmit tick carried diseases.

The number of ticks and tick carried diseases are on the rise in our environment. Chester County Pennsylvania is not unique to this growing threat.  Studies have shown and have been able to predict this increase in tick borne illnesses by studying mice, in particular the White-footed field mouse.


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Genetic Testing For Pets – More Than Just Who Am I

Genetic Testing for Pets can tell you which of these dogs are pure bred and what mixture of breeds make up the others. Shown are two goldens, one collie and 4 dogs of uncertain genetics
Four of these dogs are of undocumented heritage. Who are they really? Genetic testing could tell.

Genetic testing for pets may do much more than answer the question heard almost daily in veterinary offices: “What breed do you think my dog (cat) is?” In the past, as a veterinarian, I would point to the chart of dog or cat breeds hanging on the wall. I would suggest the owner to cut and paste the ears, nose, tail, feet, etc. from the breeds pictured to make up their mixed breed’s possible heritage. Today, in a world of 23andMe for humans, genetic testing for our dogs and cats is finally coming of age. Continue reading “Genetic Testing For Pets – More Than Just Who Am I”

Pet Travel – Preparation and Certification

Pet travel photo showing a chocolate labrador on top of suitcases
Pet travel can be fun for you and your furry friend.

Pet travel has increased in popularity as our lives become more globalized.  Pets are important family members and are often included in our vacation plans.  Individuals with service animals need to bring them along for assistance.  People move frequently due to job changes.  Popular transportation options for pets include driving by the owner or a transportation company and flying on an airplane.  Pre-travel health evaluation and certification by a veterinarian (if needed).  Special planning by the owner facilitates travel, reduces stress for you and your pet, and ensures your pet’s safety during travel. Continue reading “Pet Travel – Preparation and Certification”

Parasite Prevention: Getting the Bugs Out

parasite prevention: three dogs sitting and rolling in the grass on a warm sunny day.
It is time to spring into action and get your pet on parasite prevention.


Parasite prevention for pets living in Chester County, Pennsylvania is very important.  Our warm winter has  been nice, but it has done nothing to  reduce the numbers of parasites in our environment.   We have some information for you to consider when deciding on parasite prevention for your pets.

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Dog Laughter and Smiles – Fun For All


Dog laughter and smiling are actually easy to recognize. This golden holding a frog toy is all smiles
A dog smile is easy to recognize.

Dog Laughter and Smiles. They Really Do Have a Sense of Humor 🙂

Have you ever noticed your dog laughing at you when you’ve done something goofy?  Have you ever noticed dogs playing together and laughing in the joy of good fun? Well guess what, science now agrees that dog laughter and dog smiles are very real things! Continue reading “Dog Laughter and Smiles – Fun For All”

Caring for Your Pet’s Teeth

dachsund dog holding a toothbrush and showing pet's teeth
Caring for your pet’s teeth can improve their overall health and longevity.

February is dental health month for pets and we want to help owners learn how to care for their pet’s teeth.  Did you know daily care for your pet’s teeth can significantly contribute to the overall health , well-being, and longevity of your beloved friend ? Dental and periodontal diseases  are the most commonly diagnosed health issues for pets. They are also diseases that veterinarians and pet owners can work together to treat and prevent with regular care.


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Dog saliva: facts to know

Dog licking a person on the face. Dog saliva on the face. Person is smiling.
What is in dog saliva? Does it have healing powers?

Most every one who has a dog in their life has experienced the deliberate or surprise slobbery kiss from fido. Dog saliva covers our face.  Some people suggest that dog saliva has healing properties.  Our relationship and affection toward our furry friend is not uncommon. However, what is common is our lack of understanding about what lies in our dog’s mouth.   We have some useful information on how to keep your best canine friend healthy as well as your family.

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Crowdsourced Pet Projects

Crowdsourced pet projects are underway to find genetic links to dog behaviors. Is there a reason this golden retriever with a mouth full of toys likes to retrieve?
Crowdsourced pet projects are underway to find genetic links to dog behaviors. Is there a reason Dave the Mudgemite likes to retrieve?

Crowdsourced Pet Projects Are Gaining from Strength in Numbers

Crowdsourcing is a new  way to get massive amounts of knowledge from a wide variety of sources. Complex problems can be solved. Large volumes of data can be obtained. Did you know that there are crowdsourced pet projects? You and your pets can now help advance science! By participating, you may not only learn your dog’s genetic history, but can also help scientists unravel how those genetic markers impact canine behaviors. Continue reading “Crowdsourced Pet Projects”