SOURCE: Rainbow Light

April 15, 2009 13:34 ET

12 Tips for the Obama Family and Their New Adopted Dog, Bo

Renowned Holistic Vet Dr. Randy Kidd, Veterinary Adviser of Rainbow Light Nutritional Systems and Green Dog Naturals (www.greendognaturals.com), and Author of Two Acclaimed Books, "Dr. Kidd's Guide to Herbal Dog Care" and "Dr. Kidd's Guide to Herbal Cat Care," Offers His Advice

SANTA CRUZ, CA--(Marketwire - April 15, 2009) - As the Obamas prepare to welcome home their first pet dog, Dr. Randy Kidd, holistic veterinarian and herbalist and veterinary adviser of Rainbow Light, a leader in natural nutrition since 1981, provides a few "first" tips to ease the transition and ensure a long and healthy life ahead. But these tips aren't just for the First Family, they are for all dog guardians welcoming a new canine member into their family. Anyone can follow these quick and easy tips, which are also easily adapted for puppies. Note: The terms he and she below are used interchangeably.

--  Welcome Home: Much like first impressions, your dog's first few days
    in a new household are important.  Greet him like he's something special
    (this should not be too hard), and start out by showing him he's a welcome
    member of the family... with some of the usual restrictions that apply to
    all family members.  Remember that habits form early; make sure you try to
    make the new habits good ones and don't let bad ones develop.
    
--  First Day Howls: If it's her first day away from momma or her other
    family or recent familiar surroundings, she'll likely miss them, and she
    may set up a howl when she's supposed to be sleeping quietly in her own
    bed.  Try a warm water bottle, well wrapped in several layers of towel; a
    ticking clock nearby may also make Pup feel like she's still in momma's
    company.
    
--  Set Your Boundaries: Decide beforehand where your dog will sleep;
    which furniture he can climb on and what he must stay off of. Prepare a
    special place where he can be away from the family -- a place where he can
    sleep in peace.
    
--  To Crate or Not to Crate: While some folks feel their dogs should
    sleep in bed with them, many trainers feel that a crate (a regular dog
    crate that fits the size of the dog) is the ideal place to let the sleeping
    dog lie, and most dogs seem to actually enjoy the security that their own
    private crate provides.  But first, if adopted, determine what the dog was
    previously used to.
    
--  Let 'Em Out: Puppies and dogs are made to run and play, sniff the
    ground, dig in the dirt, and roll in the grass (and the cow plop).  Healthy
    dogs are those that have been allowed to be dogs. Being outside, exercising
    his four legs and all his senses is a dog's natural gateway to health.
    
--  Day One Training: Training begins on day one, and important aspects
    include:  housetraining (lots of good tips for this on the Internet); where
    she is to sleep and where she is allowed to go and not go; and the Big
    Three of Dog Commands: sit/stay/come.  Remember that puppies have even less
    of an attention span than a normal teenage boy, and they will be several
    months old before they come close to reaching their real physical
    capabilities.  Several very short (a few minutes at a time) training
    sessions throughout the day are much better than one longer one.
    
--  Hands On: The more hands-on you are with the new dog, the better.  A
    daily brushing is a must, and have your vet show you how to clean your
    pup's teeth.  The earlier you start to brush body and teeth, the easier
    (and more fun) it will be for your dog to accept your helpful hands. A rub
    down or massage is good for the puppy and the human massager as well, and
    you can stimulate many health-providing acupuncture points with a simple
    head to tail, whole-body massage.  Pay particular attention to the ears and
    feet because acupuncture points are concentrated there, and it's important
    that Pup learn to accept that you (and your vet) will routinely be
    examining his ears and feet.
    
--  Natural Mischief Makers: Puppies are natural mischief-makers.  They
    love to chew, yap at anything strange or new, pee and poop wherever they
    happen to be at the time, and romp and play until they collapse from
    exhaustion.  Be prepared for the natural nature of Puppy, and realize that
    play time is often the best time to offer her some tips for how you want
    her to socialize into your family.  In other words, be ready to work
    training sessions into play times.
    
--  Best Food: Food is medicine and medicine is food.  Provide your puppy
    with the very best food you can.  Home-fixed foods are the best, but if
    that's impractical for your family, provide a quality food, and for most
    commercial foods, a little added meat will be beneficial. "Grazing" (being
    able to eat from many different food sources) is the best way to provide
    most or all of the essential nutrients.
    
--  Supplements to Grow On... but not too much: Important supplements for
    puppies include: a balanced omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acid mix to enhance the
    immune system and to help a healthy growth phase; probiotics to help
    maintain gut health; and a balanced vitamin and mineral mix. Whatever a
    puppy is fed early on is likely to be his preferred food in later life, so
    get pups accustomed to the tastes of supplements and herbs at a young age.
    Remember that the most important aspect of puppy supplements is that they
    be balanced.  Too much of any one nutrient or supplement can be more
    harmful than beneficial.
    
--  Kids Need to Know: Puppies are so cute, so rambunctious, so happy and
    happy-making that kids may try to play too rough with them.  Puppies are
    also fragile, and they need lots and lots of sleep.  Teach the kids to be
    gentle and to respect the times when Puppy needs her rest.
    
--  Have fun: Remember that Puppy is a dog in cute and cuddly clothes.  He
    or she is not a human, but puppies and dogs have the ability to teach us
    humans how to have fun with our own lives, how to live with the same joy
    expressed by the natural dog, and how we too can become a healthy part of
    the natural world around us.
    

About Dr. Randy Kidd:

A writer, educator and alternative/holistic veterinarian, Dr. Randy Kidd was instrumental in the creation and ongoing enhancement of Rainbow Light's® newest product line, GreenDog Naturals™, the most comprehensive family of canine supplement products to date.

A published author and speaker, Dr. Kidd is a leading authority on canine health. He is an expert columnist for Herbs for Health Magazine and Dog World; his articles have appeared in Whole Dog Journal, Journal of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association and Veterinary Medicine. He has also written two acclaimed books, "Dr. Kidd's Guide to Herbal Dog Care" and "Dr. Kidd's Guide to Herbal Cat Care."

About GreenDog Naturals - The complementary line of GreenDog Naturals -- Whole Dog Daily™, Healthy Motion® and Omega Glo-Coat 3-6-9™ -- is a "whole health for the whole dog" approach to support a long and healthy life. High quality does not mean high prices: for example, Whole Dog Daily costs only $.35 per day -- a mere 10 percent of the price of a daily latte. These great-tasting supplements, in easy-to-mix powders, chewable bone-shaped tablets, or oil, are available at independent pet specialty stores, www.greendognaturals.com, www.fetchdog.com and select Whole Foods Market® stores.

About Rainbow Light® (www.rainbowlight.com/) - Since its founding in 1981, Santa Cruz-based Rainbow Light Nutritional Systems has grown to become the leading formulator and manufacturer of science-based, all-natural, food-based supplements.

Editor's note: Interviews with Dr. Kidd and images are available upon request.

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