"Bark 'n' Scratch"

Volume III - Issue 10:  April 1, 2005
Published by:
Christopher Aust, Master Trainer

Please send comments on the BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter to:

A warm, "WELCOME!" to all of our new readers!

Please add the newsletter's email address of: Newsletter@Master-Dog-Training.com to your "Friends" list, "Approved Senders" list or address book.

In Today's Issue ...

=>  Just Visiting? Please Subscribe Here.  ->
=>  Christopher's Drool
=>  Vacationing with Fido
=>  Quote of the Week
=>  Mail Bag
=>  Recommended Stuff
=>  You Know You're From a Small Town if ...

Subscribe to:

"Bark 'n' Scratch"



Subscribe FREE

Privacy Policy

Christopher's Drool

Hey Everybody,

Did you miss me? Well, I got quite a few things done while I was off and have a few new things I will be telling you about in the next few weeks. They are really quite exciting, and I was able to put a lot of it in place during my little absence.

While we have been getting hit by a lot of storms here in Northern California recently, summer is quickly approaching, and we should all start preparing for it now. By taking care of it now, we won't all be blind sided when the temperature starts to hit triple digits.

Keep in mind, that during the winter, our dogs tend to put on a little weight due to a lack of activity. Therefore, we need to take it slowly when getting our dogs back out there to enjoy those summer activities. Just like people, when dogs have been inactive for a while, it takes a little time to get those muscles used to a lot of exercise.

We also want to remember not to excessively feed or water our dogs an hour before or after exercise. This is one of the leading causes of bloat/torsion and it is better to allow them to cool off naturally. If you think your dog is over heating, you would serve them far better by soaking down their body with a hose rather than allowing them to have a lot of water. Soaking their “armpits” will cool them much faster than a drink with none of the consequences.

Make sure your yard is set up for the summer. Your dog should have a source for cool clean water available and ample shade. Place dog houses in the shade and make sure the house is well ventilated to allow air to flow through. Whenever possible, keep the dogs indoors.

There is a product warning I want you to all know about. Xylitol, a sugar alcohol used in gums, like Trident and Orbit, can cause weakness, seizures and coma in canines. Veterinarians should be on the lookout for gum poisoning, the Animal Poison Control Center recently warned.

The sweetener causes blood sugar to plummet in canines, who compensate by creating huge amounts of insulin, sometimes dangerously high levels. It is not only used in gum but in a host of other products as well. Your best bet is to simply stick to your dogs' regular food and avoid giving them human treats.

I also want to remind everyone about the audio classes I am doing. They are going to be held weekly and we have managed one heck of a line up. The instructors are some of the biggies in the animal care, and training world. I'm really very excited to be a part of it and highly suggest you go to the link below to learn more. Additionally, the format used for the classes is incredible.


Keep those letters and suggestions coming. They are greatly appreciated.

Okay, that's it for now. I'm outta here!



Dog Chewing the Sofa?  Puppy Eating Your Shoes?  Or WORSE?

Master Dog Training

FREE Initial Telephone Consultation!  I pay for the calls on your Coaching Sessions (within the continental USA).

"Learn the 'Pack Mentality' and Train Your Dog with Ease."

You deserve to have the very best coaching for your beloved pet. He deserves no less than a Master Trainer who knows how to shape his behavior in the most natural, and painless way possible!

Click Here
for full details!


Hi Chris,

My family is planning a vacation this summer and we're wondering whether we should take our dog or not. He is a year old and has never been away from us for more than a day at any one time since he has been with us.

We have never traveled with a dog before and can't decide if it would be best to kennel him, hire a pet sitter or take him with us. Our friends and family all seem to have horror stories about each of these options. What would you recommend?

Laura D.

Vacationing with Fido

Over the years, I have traveled with dogs for both work and pleasure and have had both good and bad experiences. It has mostly been dependant upon the type of travel, destination and the individual dog's personality. On the up side, the vacation/holiday industry has realized in recent years that catering to the family pet is good business and are making the whole process a lot easier.

Now just because the industry is making it easier, doesn't mean you don't have to put a lot of thought into taking your dog with you. There are several things you need to be prepared for whether you decide to take your dog or not.

The Dog

We have to face the fact that some dogs simply don't like to travel, and we need to remember the huge amount of stress traveling could cause these animals. We have all heard the stories of dogs that have been taken on trips only to run off and try to make their way home.

While one of a thousand (and that's probably a pretty generous figure) may make it back to their family, most will either end up in the pound, hit by a car or, if they're lucky, taken in by a new family. Either way, this would put a real damper on the trip.

If you have any doubts about how secure your dog is when traveling, I strongly recommend taking a couple of short weekend outings before taking a week long plus vacation. This will allow you to evaluate your dog's reaction to a new environment and help you to decide whether taking them with you or leaving them at home is the best option. If leaving them at home appears to be the best option, there are several different ways you can go.

Pet Sitters

Simply put, a pet sitter is someone who will come to your home and care for your dog while you are away. They will feed your dog, take them out for exercise, clean up their messes and spend a little time playing. There are pet sitting businesses in every town but it could also be a trusted friend or family member.

There are a couple of things we should do and consider when hiring a commercial pet sitter. First, they should be licensed, bonded and have several verifiable references. The license and bond simply tell you they are a serious operation, but please remember to take the references with a grain of salt. I don't know of any business that is going to give you a reference they know isn't going to be favorable.

Interview the sitters just like you would if they were going to be watching your child. You will want to ensure that ...

a. The same person will be coming to your house each day to care for the dog. If there are multiple people who will be coming to the house, this could cause confusion in the dog, which could make the dog anxious.

b. They will allow your dog to meet their sitter before you decide to hire them. This way, if the dog doesn't like them for one reason or another, you can look elsewhere.

c. They not only feed the dogs, but also clean up after them and take them outside for exercise. Exercise is critical because no matter how secure dogs are, they are going to experience some stress with you being away. Exercise will help to relieve this stress and make your absence a little more bearable for the dog.

You will also want to make clear that any instructions you leave will be followed. I know we sometimes hate to be “dictatorial” but when I am hiring someone to come into my home and care for a family member, then, they should be willing to meet my expectations. If they have a problem with this, then perhaps you should look for another sitter.

Before you leave for your trip, make sure you have secured your valuables. I am not saying pet sitters are thieves, but I would rather err on the side of caution rather than risk loosing grandpa's gold watch.


This is probably my least favorite option for a couple of reasons. First, the dog is in a foreign environment that is often noisy and less than what I would consider sanitary. Additionally, they are often exposed to other animals that could have a host of diseases that could be transmitted to your dog. Now this is not true of all kennels but I would say most.

If you do decide to kennel the dog, you will want to ask the following questions…

a. Are the kennels disinfected between “guests?”

b. Are the kennels cleaned at least three times daily?

c. Are the kennels climate controlled?

d. Are the dogs given daily exercise?

e. Will your dog be kept separate from other dogs at all times?

If the answer to any of these questions is “No,” then look for another kennel.

Air Travel

Personally, I will only fly with my dog if it is absolutely necessary. This is because my dogs are too big to fly in the passenger compartment with me and would have to be in the cargo hold. However, if your dog is small enough to fit in a crate that will fit under the seat, then it can be a viable option. Either way, you will want to take the following actions ...

a. Check with the airline before purchasing your tickets to find out their particular requirements for pet travel.

b. During warm weather, travel either early in the day, or late at night, to avoid exposing the dog to extreme heat, and take direct flights to avoid any “baggage” mistakes that might occur during transfers.

c. Make sure the crew is aware an animal is on the plane so the captain can take any special precautions.

d. Make sure your dog has proper identification on their travel crate and attached to their collar that not only has your home information, but also contact information to your final destination.


When I travel, I prefer to drive most of the time. I enjoy seeing the country and stopping to see local sites along the way. Additionally, I take my dogs with me when I vacation/holiday and find this to be the easiest on the dog. While it is the easiest on the dog, there are some things you have to consider for the welfare of your dog.

a. Make sure the dog is secured in the back seat of the car. There are harnesses you can buy that attach to the seat belt that will keep your dog safe if you are in an accident. Never transport a dog in the bed of a pick-up truck!

b. Make frequent stops to allow the dogs to relieve themselves. For some reason, I have found dogs tend to need to do the doo more frequently when they are traveling by car.

c. Make sure you bring your dog's favorite toy, bedding, food/water bowls and plenty of your dog's regular food with you. This will provide them with something familiar and make the experience less stressful.

d. Take a copy of your dog's medical record, plenty of medication (if any) and make sure you have the address and phone number of a local vet at your destination in case of emergency.

Pet Friendly Facilities

As I mentioned earlier, the vacation/holiday industry has started to recognize the need to cater to the pets of their customers. However, you need to make sure the facilities are pet friendly. I'm not just talking about the hotels here but also the activities you are planning to do.

For instance, in Huntington Beach, California, there are several hotels near the pier that welcome dogs. Unfortunately, the beaches in twenty miles each direction don't allow dogs on the sand or near the water. Now if you were planning on taking a leisurely stroll each morning along the beach with your pooch, you would be in for a major disappointment. Take the time in advance to contact any and all facilities you plan to visit to avoid any last minute upsets.

Additionally, many pet friendly establishments have deposits and fees you will need to fit into your vacation budget. Make sure you check in advance, as often establishments will tell you pets are welcome, but forget to mention the fees. Do your homework.

Traveling with (or without) your pet can be a fun and enjoyable experience when you plan in advance. There are several resources online that can help you plan your trip so your dog has as good a time as you do. Here are a few:


These will give you a good place to begin to plan your trip. Remember to verify with the actual hotels and other venues when you make your reservations to ensure their policies or fees haven't changed. With a little effort, everyone can have a great time.

This article may be republished using the following attribution box:
Copyright ©2004 Christopher Aust, Master Dog Trainer & Creator:
The Natural Cooperative Training System (NCTS) for Dogs
The Instinctual Development System (IDS) for Puppies
Subscribe to the BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter: subscribe@Master-Dog-Training.com
VISIT NOW: http://www.Master-Dog-Training.com

Quote of the Week

They are better than human beings, because they know but do not tell.

~ Emily Dickenson ~

iCop Coupon Club
Now YOU can save thousands of dollars and STILL have all the products and services you need.

The iCop Coupon Club features coupons in all price ranges.

Categories include home-based and online business, web site, home, family, entertainment, gift, health and motivational products and services ...


Click Here!

Mail Bag


I started reading your newsletter about six months ago right after getting our puppy. I can't tell you how helpful it has been to us. Your information is clear and so easy to follow it makes it so it easy to apply to our family. Thanks for all the help and a great newsletter.

Melody N.


A friend sent me your article on designer dogs when he heard we were considering getting a Puggle. I am so glad he did. Originally, we thought it would really be cool to have a new breed of dog. After reading your article, our view has drastically changed.

We took your advice and got a great dog out of the local shelter. We then donated $200.00 to the shelter to help them keep going. Thanks for the sound advise. I will be subscribing to your newsletter today!

Jeff McCowan

Need New Subscribers For Your Newsletter?

Let's Trade Ads!

If you would like to trade a six (6) line request for more newsletter subscribers, please write to:

=>  ads@Master-Dog-Training.com



Let your dog's body in on the age-old health secret that Polynesian islanders have know for thousands of years. Experience TAHITIAN NONI® Juice … not just an island legend, but a living health miracle. Aids your dog's Immune, Circulatory, Skeletal and Muscular, Digestive and Metabolic systems. Fully endorsed by Christopher Aust - Master Dog Trainer/Behaviorist.

=>  http://www.tahitiannoni.com/kellydriscoll

"Home-Based Business"

Interested in having your own successful, home-based creative real estate business? "Like having a personal coach arrive in your email box!"

We've been helping folks start successful home-based businesses for over 17 years.

=>  http://www.homebusinesssolutions.com

"The Whole Dog Store"

Your Source For All Ways Natural Pet Products ... Wholesome Alternatives for your Pet's Lifestyle and Fancy!

=>  http://www.jeanesholistics.com/TWDS.html

Good to Be You

For the latest articles on health, beauty and well-being for the mind, body and spirit, please sign up for our priceless (free!) ezine today. Just log on to GoodtoBeYou.com and see the ezine sign-up box.

Chock-full of unique accessories, gifts and spa bath & beauty products for the pampered princess in all of us.


Joke of the Week


~ You can name everyone you graduated with.  

~ You ever went to parties at a pasture, barn, or in the middle of a dirt road.  

~ You used to drag "Main."  

~ You said a cuss word and your parents knew within the hour.  

~ You ever went cow tipping or snipe hunting.  

~ You were ever in the Homecoming parade.  

~ The whole school went to the same party after graduation.  

~ You don't give directions by street names but by references (turn by Nelson's house, go two blocks east to Anderson's, and it's four houses left of the track field).  

~ Your car stays filthy because of the dirt roads, and you will never own a dark vehicle for this reason.  

~ You think kids that ride skateboards are weird.  

~ The town next to you is considered "trashy" or "snooty," but is actually just like your town.  

~ Getting paid minimum wage is considered a raise.  

~ You refer to anyone with a house newer than 1980 as the  "rich people."  

~ Anyone you want can be found at either the Dairy Queen or the feed store.  

~ You see at least one friend a week driving a tractor through town.  

~ Football coaches suggest that you haul hay for the summer to get stronger.  

~ Directions are given using "the" stop light as a reference.  

~ The city council meets at the coffee shop.  

~ Your letter jacket was worn after your 19th birthday.  

~ Weekend excitement involves a trip to a Wal-Mart.  

~ You decide to walk somewhere for exercise and 5 people pull over and ask if you need a ride.  

~ Your teachers call you by your older siblings' names.  

~ Your teachers remember when they taught your parents.

* Have a joke you'd like to submit to us? Joke@Master-Dog-Training.com

Thank You For Reading!  Have a Terrific Week!

Don't forget to send your comments, questions and suggestions on the BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter to:


Newsletter Archive:  Master-Dog-Training.com/archive/

The Legal Mumbo-Jumbo

The BARK 'n' SCRATCH Newsletter is published by Christopher Aust Copyright © 2005 All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted without the express written consent of the publisher or contributors.

We accept no responsibility for your use of any contributed information contained herein. All of the information presented in BARK 'n' SCRATCH is published in good faith. Any comments stated in this newsletter are strictly the opinion of the writer or publisher.

We reserve the right to edit and make suitable for publication, if necessary, any articles published in this newsletter. We reserve the right to publish all reader comments, including the name of the writer.

Christopher Aust, Master Dog Trainer & Creator:
The Natural Cooperative Training System (NCTS) for Dogs
The Instinctual Development System (IDS) for Puppies

iCop Charter Member


To subscribe

Cancellation directions can be found at the bottom of your announcement email.