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Labrador Health

    Labrador Health  |  Labrador Diet Labrador Training  | Puppy Health | Info

Labrador Health:

Building a Dog-Run for Your Lab:

     Is your landscape damage costing more than you paid for the dog? If so, you need a kennel or dog-run: somewhere to secure the dog when you're not outside with her. You can call a Fence Contractor; you can order an expensive kennel from a tack or feed store; or you can drive down to your local MEGA home improvement store, and in the Fencing Department you will find something for the "Do-It-Yourselfer". Hmmmm, but what size do I get? There is this 6' x 6' x 4' tall thing, It has chain link roof, and they even have a sun-shade cover for it. Hey, its on sale for $99! Hmmmm...You kind get what you pay for in this decision. They also offer these chain link panels, 6' x 6' only $39 each, and a gated panel for $67. For $260 that's a 6' x 12' run, 6' high. Well, $260 is less than replacing the roses, but check the thickness of the chain link. If you can bend it with you fingers, the dog can too with one bite. Where are you going to put this new dog-run? What I'm asking is: what type of floor will it have? If it's out on the lawn, the lawn wont last. And what will the sprinklers do to it? If you put it on the patio, there goes your patio! If you put it on the side of the house, will it be on dirt? Ok, now it's on dirt, and the dirt is full of bacteria.
Ok, Here's that solution

     The follow directions are for a 6' by 12' dog run, Check actual measurements of the panels you purchased. First, go down to the lumbar yard, and buy (3) pressure treated 2" x 6" x 12'. Cut one board in half. Use 2 1/2" deck screws and build a 6' x 12' frame (it will be 6" tall). Assemble the panels around the frame. Now dig 9 holes 14" round, 12" deep, evenly spaced inside the frame. Fill the holes and frame with WASHED pea-gravel. You will need 0.8 yards of pea-gravel. At the gardening supply store, buy a yard sprayer. Fill it with bleach, (or "ODO-Ban" from Sam's Club), and set it on the highest setting. After picking up waste from the gravel, spray the bleach, the follow that with fresh water (Make sure the dog isn't in the run when cleaning).
Inside, your dog will need fresh water and a dog house. If you get the dog house with a flat roof, not only can he sunbath on top of the dog house, but he can also jump out of the dog-run! However, I have yet to see a dog that can balance on top of an "Igloo" or "Dogloo." He will need a pad, or bed for the Igloo. If you buy an expensive bed for the puppy, she will be sure to shed it. I suggest carpet remnants. Cut 3 or 4 to shape. When they get nasty, throw them out and cut up some more.
OK! now you have a first rate dog run! Is this just for when you're gone? Or will this be a permanent habitat? If this is the new residence for your family dog, don't get a Labrador! At least not from us. Labradors want to be with you. Do not get a "trophy pet" and lock him up, out of site and out of mind. If that's the kind of pet you want, I suggest you get a fish!


     Feed 4 times a day (beginning with an 8 to 10 week old pup) Once the puppy is 4 to 5 months old (or all adult teeth are in) feed 3 times a day. Start with a cup to one full cup of dry kibble if he eats it all- feed more. If he leaves some, good. Feed 2 times a day from 6 months on. Your dog should not be considered fat. This can affect his health and his hip joints. You should see a waist line on a grown dog, and see the outline of his ribs. But you should never be able to count the ribs. (This applies to a grown dog only) Be sure to fatten your puppy while he is growing. He will use the food for growth.


     We personally, free feed our puppies and some of our adults dry kibble. This means the dry kibble is left out all day for them. They seem to eat only when they are hungry. No one seems to be overweight, or too thin. This method is entirely up to you. All dogs have different needs so the above feeding is only a guideline. Your pup is used to getting raw carrots, apples, squash, broccoli spears ground up and placed on top of the kibble lightly soaked with warm water every morning. This encourages them to eat their first meal. You may use a spoon or two of yogurt or cottage cheese, or egg, scrambled or raw once or twice a day. If you do not wish to add the water or the egg, all he really needs is the NuVet vitamin and a vitamin C in addition to the dry kibble

     We are feeding Life's Abundance and add NuVet supplements for the first meal, I don't recommend a crate training puppy to free feed. It makes it too hard to know when they need to eliminate. Remember, it takes 10 minutes to hour after a meal to eliminate. Life's Abundance is recommended for the life of your dog it has a high protein content so as your puppy gets older you can feed your puppy the same food, but use more of it. It goes by the dogs weight, so be sure to look at the feeding instructions on the side of the bag. (the bacteria content is different and they will get very ill) I feed my dogs in crates here. It also eliminates fighting in multiple dog houses as well as food stealing. This way I can monitor who is eating what. (If you plan on feeding kibble in the crate, fine. I do not recommend feeding or giving water inside the crate)

Quick Tips:

If your puppy has diarrhea: use some chicken breast boiled up and broken into small pieces- on top of some white rice- 3 scoops of pumpkin (Libby's, in the can) on top- for 3 days- if it persists past 4 days- call me.

For Yellow spots on the lawn- try some tomato sauce or paste. Scoop this on top of his food everyday as well. (A heaping spoonful) The acid in the tomatoes will neutralize the acid in the urine.


     I don't do too many snacks- but I recommend carrots, apples, squash, and homemade treats. As a fast food alternative, get some packaged or boxed biscuits or bones - at trader Joes- or look for Mrs. Hubbard's or Life's Abundance Snacks. Or you can bake your own with brown flour...I may have a recipe if you are interested See the butcher, and have him cut you up some bones with his ban saw. They can be placed in your freezer until your pup needs another. For obedience training, and sit, shake tricks, I use boneless and skinless chicken breast boiled and cut up into small pieces and placed in a zip lock bag in the fridge, as a training treat. Hot dogs, bacon and really yummy pup-perionis are all good too. Don't give the puppy left over's just yet. Make this transition very similar to what the puppy has had while living with us. When he is 4 months old, you can give him some left- over's in his bowl after you are finished eating.


     We believe in Nu-Vet Canine Plus (herbs, and vitamins and supplements) All natural made with human grade ingredients which help to boost the immune system. A must for a puppy or dog on any kind of diet. With Nu-Vet, all you need is one a day- and they love it. This will keep them from many illnesses get and to boost their immune system to prevent ailments of many kinds. They have always on been on this supplement. Even while in the womb. We would like to see your puppy remain on the same diet we have planned for him/her. Remember the key is to make this an easy transition from our house to yours. Please do not change the routine in any way. Every day the pups get one NuVet plus canine (vitamin chewable). Because we believe in the Nu Vet supplement, we have based our extended guarantee on it. I have made it possible for you to get it directly from the manufacturer. It will be sold to you at my cost. Use my wholesale code, as this cannot be found in stores. (They only to sell to breeders and to Veterinarians.) Their # is 800-474-7044 order code: 32892. I encourage anyone who loves their pet including cats, to get on this product. We have seen amazing changes in coat, clarity, eye, allergies, flees (I could go on and on) My dogs are able to enjoy this supplement along with their Nu Joint supplement that we give them everyday, and I plan on doing this for the rest of their lives.