Tuesday 13 December 2016

The Puppy Days - 6 Months Old

Dalmatian Puppy

Where do I start on Lux this month? 

He might very well be on Santa's naughty list. 

One morning last week he had been exceptionally quiet, I was in my office trying to make a head start on my to do list... So I went in to inspect and see what he was up to. He had taken my handbag off the work surface, emptied it. Killed my bobble hat (The bobble is what you can see scattered all over the floor...), of course he thought he was hilarious, and to be honest I couldn't help but smile when I saw the sense of satisfaction that wiped over his entire face.

Dalmatian Puppy

That might be the least naughty thing he has done though, and the contender for top naughty moment of the month has to be when I took him into Broadway village centre for the late night shopping. They have lot's of things going on in the street so we thought it would be nice to enjoy a stroll around the beautiful Cotswold Village with a mulled wine in hand. Of course Lux had other ideas and began following his nose as soon as we arrived. At one point I thought he was going to jump the wall to the open BBQ and take me with him... but the best was yet to come. It was on our way back to the car after he had pulled me around like a train carriage for the course of the evening, when he managed to loosen his lead and jump up at an elderly lady who was enjoying her festive mince pie!

Of course I pulled him straight back down and apolagised profusely to this poor lady (who thankfully had the grace to see the humour of the situation and my giant puppy trying to steal her snack), and made a dash for the car! I get the feeling we are no longer welcome in the Cotswold's.... Thanks Lux.

The following day we took him for a nice long walk up Breden Hill, and thankfully he was on his best behaviour.

Dalmatian Puppy

It's as almost as though this month he has regressed, he has become more mouthy again and he doesn't seem to be able to calm down and relax in the same room with us, yet as soon as you put him back in the kitchen for time out he will drift off to sleep, which I hate as I want him to be back to normal so that he can fall asleep on the sofa around us all.

Last month Rosewood sent Lux a beautiful new bed because he outgrew his initial bed within a month of us bringing him home, so he had some blankets on the floor in the kitchen, of course now it is getting colder we wanted something a little bit more substantial for him to keep him off the cold floor. 

Dalmatian Puppy

Dalmatian Puppy

He has spent the last month sleeping on the Chocolate Tweed Mattress, at 6 months he is a big dog, and this bed is the absolute perfect size for him. When we first gave it to him he announced his attraction by peeing on it... Whoever say's Dog's don't pee where they sleep, well they are lying. Because they do. I took it away and washed the cover before giving it back to him, I didn't want the kitchen being stunk out by my naughty pup who knows exactly where he's allowed to urinate, and exactly where he is not. 

Thankfully this was the only time he has done that, but he has recently taken to biting and pulling his lovely bed around, and I am now forever picking up fluff he has gauged out. I don't think the boy realises just how good he has it! 

It really is a lovely bed, it's thick, soft and really well padded. I have been really thankful for how easy it is to whip the cover off (there's a zip) and get it in the wash ready to go back to him nice and fresh again.

A toy that has been a real hit this month with Lux is the Catch & Flash Ball from Rosewood, you can see it in the above video clip after Lux stops throwing his bed around the room. It's a nice solid ball that Lux loves to chew on, I can hear him bouncing it around the kitchen as I type this so it would seem his nap is now over... It's great to keep him entertained for a while, even at night time when we have all gone to bed, because it flashes it means that he can even play with it in the dark!

I haven't really talked much about Lux's diet before now, but I thought this would be an interesting time to bring it up. You may or may not be aware that Dalmatians have specific breed problems (doesn't every breed!?), some Dalmatian's can be born deaf, this is a common occurrence, but not the end of the world, but all Dalmatians carry a genetic mutation that alters the way in which they metabolize and excrete purines. Purines are found in many different foods and this is especially true with meat. 

- Normally purines would be broken down like this:

- Purines are converted to hypoxanthine.

- Hypoxanthine is converted to xanthine.

- Xanthine is converted to uric acid.

- Uric acid is converted to allantoin, which is excreted in the urine.

It is safe to say that every Dalmatian cannot perform this final step 'Uric acid is converted to allantoin, which is excreted in the urine.' which means that their urine contains a high level of uric acid. Not every Dalmatian will go on to form urate stones, but it is always a possibility which means that Dalmatian owners need to be educated in what their dogs can and cannot eat. 

We feed Lux a low purine raw diet, I haven't actually bought a pack of dog food since we brought him home. Instead I follow the traffic light system, foods high in purines like Beef, Oily Fish, Game Meats and so on.

So what do we feed?

Instead we feed a raw diet of Turkey Mince, Turkey Necks, Chicken and bones, we would feed this along side things like:

- Egg
- Pasta
- Rice
- Oats
- Low Purine Vegetables like Broccoli and Carrot 

This way I know exactly what Lux is eating, and I know that we are avoiding any high purine foods that could potentially lead us into problems later on. I float all of his meals with water so that I am constantly flushing him through, and I make sure that he always has fresh water to drink throughout the day and night. Another important aspect is always providing him opportunities to go outside and have a pee (as I do get a lot of water into him!).

Dalmatian Puppy

Dalmatian Puppy

A lot of people recommended Advance Dog Food to us when we first picked him up, but we have got on really well with the raw feeding, and Lux absolutely loves it.  We have 3 dog bowls laid out in the kitchen, we have 2 open bowls, one that has water in, the other that we would put all of his meat and bone, and the third is a Fellipet Kaleido Manners Bowl - We put cottage cheese with his vegetables and rice in this bowl, the idea is that the paw print in the middle acts as an anti-scoff feature. This has been working a treat with Lux, as he usually only takes a minute or two to devour whatever is in front of him, it is really nice to watch him start taking his time. 

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