Whole Dog Journal's Blog September 20, 2011

A Good Time for Feedback from You, Our Readers!

Posted at 08:43AM - Comments: (18)

In my editorial in the September issue, I mentioned that both my writers and I have endured some various challenging life events this summer, which delayed the appearance of a few articles. Fortunately, other terrific pieces were prepared ahead of schedule, or in a few cases, appeared out of thin air from one of my regular contributors. Despite the drama, we’ve been able to bring you a full 24 pages of information you could immediately put into practice – even if it wasn’t on the topics we hinted at in the “what’s ahead” bar that appears on page 24. 

Mentioning these difficulties last month accomplished one nice side effect: I received a number of notes or email messages containing suggestions for other articles. It gave me an idea: While regrouping, I should take this opportunity to formally ask all of you about what you’d like to see in WDJ. And so I’ve asked the Web guys at our publishing HQ to add a link to WDJ’s home page (whole-dog-journal.com) for a short survey. Would you please go to the survey and answer just a few questions about what you’d like to see more of, or less of, in WDJ?

Just so you know: When planning each issue, I try to maintain a balance between dog-friendly, force-free training; holistic healthcare (including conventional medicine) for dogs; product reviews; and nutrition. In the best of all possible worlds, I’d have a bit of information about each of these in each issue.

Sometimes, however, the pendulum swings hard one way or the other for an issue or two. Last month, for example, we had a lot of training and behavior-related articles; this month, the issue is top-loaded with two in-depth articles having to do with health: chemotherapy for dogs with cancer, and Addison’s disease. We’re going to have a ton of food-related coverage in the next few months. It all evens out eventually – at least, I hope it does.

I also try to balance some of the very long, detailed feature articles with shorter offerings, such as the “5-Step Action Plan” column and “Canine News You Can Use.” Generally speaking, the idea with the long pieces is to give a reader who is struggling with that particular subject everything they need to know to really make a difference to their dog’s condition, whether the issue is health- or behavior-related. I understand that if you are not, yourself, dealing with that issue with your dog, these long pieces can be tedious. The idea is, though, that if your dog – or your brother’s dog, or your neighbor’s dog – ever did develop that condition, boom! You’d have an article on file that would really help address the problem.

Check out the “Survey” link on whole-dog-journal.com. And thanks for your interest in WDJ!

Comments (18)

I would love to see some information, positive or negative, about the new "Thundershirts" for dogs. They are supposed to alleviate stress under any circumstance, i.e. thunderstorms, separation anxiety, etc. Do they work? Also, my sister swears by 'Petkin Liquid Oral Care', a liquid she adds to her dog's water to whiten and clean his teeth. Does that work and is it safe? Thanks.

Posted by: SPENCER R | October 4, 2011 12:26 PM    Report this comment

I would like to some information, alternatives and comparisons for tick control. Is there a tick only treatment out there?

Posted by: Debra B | October 2, 2011 8:24 PM    Report this comment

My senior dog has congestive heart failure which requires her to take a diuretic. She's been perfectly house-trained, but now, she occasionally leaks. I take her out every couple hours but sometimes that is not enough or I have to be gone more than 2 hrs. leaving her alone. Getting her outside now involves carrying her up/down 2 flights of steps as she no longer handles staircases well. I'd like to train her to use pee pads. I'd love to hear about training this behavior in an older previously well house-trained dog -- retaining her ability to go outside but using a pee pad when necessary.

I'd also be interested in various products for incontinence -- I bought some doggie diapers for night time -- and any other tips or tricks others use to cope with an occasionally incontinent senior.

Also, ditto on the tick-borne diseases mentioned by other posters. Maggie had erlichia this summer and before diagnosis, her lethargic, ill behavior combined with heart issues (now better managed) and arthritis (hail salmon oil and glucosamine!) led us to consider euthanasia. Fortunately, the erlichia was diagnosed and treated. Maggie is doing so well that I am horrified that we were considering euthanasia pre-diagnosis!

Posted by: Carolyn M | September 25, 2011 2:23 PM    Report this comment

I'd love to see a review of grooming products. Grooming sprays, shampoos, contitioners, sunscreens.
Reviewed both for efficacy and for safety.

Posted by: LESLIE M | September 24, 2011 4:32 PM    Report this comment

We have a blind dog, diagnosed last year. The story is an interesting one and if anyone ever needs any help or encouragement I would love to pass our experience on to others. It was very much like Kubler Ross's passage, but ended not only in acceptance but pure joy. I would gladly assist anyone through the journey.

Posted by: JUDY A | September 21, 2011 5:26 PM    Report this comment

I would like to see some long articles about, and I hate to say this, diarrhea. Spot is the only dog friend we have ever had who has very loose stools eating the same things as Mary, her little blind sister.

Posted by: JUDY A | September 21, 2011 5:17 PM    Report this comment

An article or two on dental care and treatment options would be great. When to use a veterinary dentist and when to have one's regular dentist do cleanings, tooth removal, etc. I have an old rescue dog that had terrible teeth and early remal insufficiency so having bad teeth removed efficiently would have limited the times she needed to be anesthetized. One of her molars had an advanced resorbtive lesion, difficult to detect without x-rays. I've had this little setter for nearly 2 years and she's just a joy as well as being a prima donnna and a reason to get educated on nutrition, kidneys and so much more. Doggie dementia would be another topic of interest.

Posted by: SHIRLEY B | September 21, 2011 3:47 PM    Report this comment

An article or two on dental care and treatment options would be great. When to use a veterinary dentist and when to have one's regular dentist do cleanings, tooth removal, etc. I have an old rescue dog that had terrible teeth and early remal insufficiency so having bad teeth removed efficiently would have limited the times she needed to be anesthetized. One of her molars had an advanced resorbtive lesion, difficult to detect without x-rays. I've had this little setter for nearly 2 years and she's just a joy as well as being a prima donnna and a reason to get educated on nutrition, kidneys and so much more. Doggie dementia would be another topic of interest.

Posted by: SHIRLEY B | September 21, 2011 3:47 PM    Report this comment

An article or two on dental care and treatment options would be great. When to use a veterinary dentist and when to have one's regular dentist do cleanings, tooth removal, etc. I have an old rescue dog that had terrible teeth and early remal insufficiency so having bad teeth removed efficiently would have limited the times she needed to be anesthetized. One of her molars had an advanced resorbtive lesion, difficult to detect without x-rays. I've had this little setter for nearly 2 years and she's just a joy as well as being a prima donnna and a reason to get educated on nutrition, kidneys and so much more. Doggie dementia would be another topic of interest.

Posted by: SHIRLEY B | September 21, 2011 3:46 PM    Report this comment

An article or two on dental care and treatment options would be great. When to use a veterinary dentist and when to have one's regular dentist do cleanings, tooth removal, etc. I have an old rescue dog that had terrible teeth and early remal insufficiency so having bad teeth removed efficiently would have limited the times she needed to be anesthetized. One of her molars had an advanced resorbtive lesion, difficult to detect without x-rays. I've had this little setter for nearly 2 years and she's just a joy as well as being a prima donnna and a reason to get educated on nutrition, kidneys and so much more. Doggie dementia would be another topic of interest.

Posted by: SHIRLEY B | September 21, 2011 3:46 PM    Report this comment

I have a story about senior dog adoption that I would like to share sometime. Some people don't like to adopt older dogs because they want to have them a long time. I understand that very well, but I fostered/adopted a 16 yr old rescue golden whom I loved with my whole heart for 6 months. I still miss him and still love him and always will. I called him Grandpa.

Posted by: Gamer | September 20, 2011 9:28 PM    Report this comment

An article about tick borne disease would be helpful. Here in N IL the ticks have been awful for the past 5+ years. We've just had our 6 year old Dobie girl diagnosed with Ehrlichia and are treating her with doxycycline. It took much too long to get a diagnosis because her symptoms were vague: low energy, she stopped playing, occasional vomiting, incontinence, matter in eyes, finally no appetite at all. After xrays, ultrasound, bloodwork and dozens of expensive tests and hours of travel and time, a tick titer test was run and Voila!--a diagnosis. It's time for tick borne diseases to be raised to top of mind awareness--for owners and veterinarians. We will be testing our dogs every year, just as we do distemper/parvo titers.

Posted by: Dobieluv | September 20, 2011 5:22 PM    Report this comment

My 5 year old rottie mix has multiple orthopedic issues. I'd love to see some articles on dysplasia - both hip and elbow. Could her condition have been somewhat alleviated if she had rec'd better care as a puppy. She's a rescue. Also, some nutritional/supplemental guidelines would be helpful. I feel as though we are doing everything we can for her, but there may be some new info out there. Thank you!

Posted by: Diane S | September 20, 2011 3:30 PM    Report this comment

I second the request for promoting adoption of senior dogs! I have 3 senior rescues, and they are a joy.

Posted by: JUDY W | September 20, 2011 1:58 PM    Report this comment

An article on canine food allergies would be good.

I recently purchased a Miniature Australian Shepherd puppy. On the advice of the breeder, I continued to feed him what she had been feeding and also the vitamins she had recommended--both contained chicken. After many days of horrible diarrhea and experimenting with eliminating various things from his diet, I found that this puppy (age 14 weeks now) is allergic to chicken! After removing chicken from his diet, his stools are now pretty solid. Has anyone experienced this problem with their dog? Does the dog eventually grow out of the chicken allergy or is it a lifetime thing?

Posted by: margeam | September 20, 2011 1:21 PM    Report this comment

As someone who is devoted to rescuing and adopting senior dogs, I would love to see some personal stories of senior dogs getting their second chance in a new forever home and how wonderful these older dogs can be as new family members. An article or two that talks about the benefits of rescuing and adopting seniors would be awesome!!!!

Posted by: dogs5cats10 | September 20, 2011 12:37 PM    Report this comment

I would love to see some time devoted to some of the silent killers like cardiac abnormalities and hemangiosarcoma. Quite often these conditions go undiagnosed until it's too late but there are warning signs that people can and should be aware of.

Posted by: dogs5cats10 | September 20, 2011 12:06 PM    Report this comment

How about revisiting flea control. They seem to be more resistant to my usual products.

Posted by: Shelly W | September 20, 2011 11:26 AM    Report this comment

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