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July 2013

How to Introduce Your Puppy to Your Cat

By Stacy Braslau-Schneck for Exceptional Canine

How to Introduce Your Puppy to Your Cat

Cats and dogs can get along great, but it depends a lot on the personality of both animals -- and how they were introduced. Dogs that are known to chase or kill small animals usually don’t buddy up with cats. There are also many dogs that live peacefully with a cat at home but chase the ones they find outside. The transition is easiest if you start with a young pup and introduce him to your cat gradually.

Puppy-cat Management

Since a puppy will be confined to small portions of your home while he learns to control his bladder, bowels and teeth, it probably won’t be too tough to keep the two animals separated at first. Your kitty should always have an escape route -- a place where cats are allowed but dogs are not (the cat food and litter box should always be kept from the dog). A cat can jump most pet gates that dogs can’t. You can also get a gate that keeps medium to large dogs out but allows cats through their own little cutout on the bottom (although small dogs can fit through those, too). Similarly, you can install a baby gate a few inches off the ground for a small cat to fit under.

Conditioning -- This Is GOOD!

Your next step is to teach each pet that the presence of the other animal means Good Things. This is called “associative conditioning,” because the animal begins to associate his housemate with something he likes. Often, the easiest lure to use is food: Kitty gets special treats when puppy is around, and puppy earns special treats by exhibiting calm behavior and following obedience commands when kitty is nearby. 

Because the animals should be separated when no one is there to supervise them (especially with young, impulse-impaired puppies or a dog that’s much larger than the cat), you should briefly allow the animals into the same area while providing each with treats and attention. Keep puppy on a leash, and consider having your cat in a carrier or pen, too. If both seem relaxed, you can let the cat out -- but keep the leash on the pup for a while.

Short Periods
Repeat this exercise for short periods over several days and take a good objective look at how well each animal is doing. If the puppy is calm and the cat seems comfortable, extend the period they spend together. Try naturally relaxed times, like mid-afternoons (but not evenings, when both dogs and cats are likely to get “the zoomies”). Consider settling your puppy down with a bone or stuffed Kong while gently petting your cat.


Stacy Braslau-Schneck is a longtime dog trainer and a professional member of the Association of Dog Pet Trainers. She works closely with the Human Society Silicon Valley and is the owner of Stacy’s Wag’N’Train, which offers small group classes and private lessons in San Jose, Calif. Stacy writes frequently for Exceptional Canine.

Dog Days of Summer at Mayfel's, Asheville, August 1

ScreenHunter_02 Jul. 19 13.54Come eat and drink with your furry friends on the front patio or back courtyard at Mayfel's, 22 College Street (right across from Pritchard Park) on Thursday, August 1. This great local restaurant serves authentic New Orleans fare with an Asheville twist and is a long-time local tradition. Mayfel's has generously offered to donate 10 percent of all proceeds all day to Asheville Humane Society and Animal Compassion Network programs.

There will be plenty of terrific food, refreshing drinks, and complimentary all-natural dog treats. So bring your doggie along to Mayfel's and help support the homeless animals of Buncombe County!

Stop Your Dog from Begging

By Stacy Braslau-Schneck for Exceptional Canine

Stop Your Dog From Begging

Imagine what your meal smells like to a dog’s incredibly sensitive nose! Those rich, savory smells are instinctively attractive to dogs because dogs came into domestication by eating our scraps. But rude mooching or stealing behaviors should not be tolerated. And there are steps you can take to stop your dog from begging.

Behavior that’s rewarded is repeated, so dogs that are given bits and pieces of your meal will persist in whatever behavior they think earned them those goodies. This is true whether they sit politely and stare at you longingly or more rudely paw, whine, bark or jump up on you or the counter. The best thing to do for quiet moochers is to flat out ignore them: Do not respond to their entreaties, even with attention. If begging never pays off, the behavior will eventually stop. But beware of the “just this once” mentality: If you ever reward begging during this extinction process, it will persist like a gambler’s habit.

Use Management and Training

Management and alternative training (redirection) more effectively teach your dog to stop begging; they also help you to withstand the more obnoxious demands of a dog that jumps on you, paws or barks.

Use a tether (a leash or plastic-coated cable), crate, baby gate or pen to prevent your dog from making physical contact with you. This management technique is vitally important for dogs that have learned to steal food off of plates, counters or tables. Employ this method when preparing or serving food.

In other circumstances, it’s essential to place food out of the dog’s reach. For most dogs, this means clearing counters completely.

Try Food Toys
Another effective technique: praising your dog by offering a treat-stuffed toy (which also focuses its attention away from your dinner). Food-motivated canines are often better-served if you stuff their meal into a rubber chew toy (such as a Kong, for wet food) or a food-dispensing toy (such as a Kibble Nibble or Wobbler, for dry food).

Set up a “success station” with a dog bed or towel accompanied by a tether, pen or crate. Before your meal, lead your dog there, praise it for getting on its spot, set up your confinement system and give the dog its food toy.


Stacy Braslau-Schneck is a longtime dog trainer and a professional member of the Association of Dog Pet Trainers. She works closely with the Human Society Silicon Valley and is the owner of Stacy’s Wag’N’Train, which offers small group classes and private lessons in San Jose, Calif. Stacy writes frequently for Exceptional Canine.

Going to Bele Chere? Don't Bring Your Dog!

ScreenHunter_05 Jul. 06 14.48Bele Chere in Asheville this year will be held on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, July 26-27-28. For safety reasons, no pets are allowed in the festival grounds.

The Staff and Volunteers of Asheville Humane Society will be providing a $10 per hour dog kennel service during the 2013 Bele Chere festival. Kennel hours are Friday 12 to 8 PM, Saturday 10 AM to 8 PM, and Sunday 12 to 6 PM.

 Asheville area pet owners are encouraged to leave their pets at home. Out of town festival attendees are encouraged to secure prior accommodations for their pets. Please refer to the Carolina Mountain Dog resource list for boarding facilities available in the area.

Bele Chere Kennel Policy: Outdoor, shaded kennels are available on a first-come, first-served basis. A crate with a towel for bedding, bowl and fresh water will be provided. Dog owners are required to handle their dogs to move them in and out of the enclosures. Dog owners may bring food, bedding and toys to make pets feel at home. The kennel attendants will supply water and a clean and safe kennel. Dog owners should plan to return periodically to walk their dog.

Low Cost Rabies and Shot Clinic-July 27

Dog_being_vaccinatedNeed to get your dog vaccinated? Come to a low-cost shot clinic on Saturday, July 27 at the following locations:

9 AM - Noon: Tractor Supply, Old Brevard Road, Asheville

1 PM - 3 PM: Tractor Supply, Monticello Road, Weaverville

1-year rabies shots are just $10 and 3-year rabies shots are $13. (You must have a prior certificate to get a 3-year vaccine.) DHPP is $15, Bordetella (kennel cough) is $16 and DHLPP combo for dogs is $20. FVRCP/FELV combo for cats is $25.

This service is provided by James Boatwright, DVM. For more information call (828) 553-5792.

Yappy Hour - Weaverville, July 25

Dog Biscuit cocktailBring your doggy to Asheville Humane Society's Yappy Hour on Thursday, July 25from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. It will be held at Creperie & Cafe, 113 North Main Street, Weaverville. Yappy Hours are the place for cool canines to congregate. They'll enjoy special treats and drinks made especially for them while you and your four-legged friend get to mingle with other dog lovers!

Admission of just $10 per person includes food and beverages and dogs are free. The Yappy Hour is being sponsored by Mix 96.5 and Paramount Kia. All proceeds go to help the homeless animals of Buncombe County. More information is available at


Free Stop the Barking Session-Leicester, July 23

ScreenHunter_03 Jan. 13 16.13Pet Behavior Aid will hold a free session to help dog owners deal with barking. If you tried everything you know to do do to stop your dog from barking so much, then this session is for you. Learn the different types of barks, what they mean, and creative ways to stop the barking.

The session will be held on Tuesday, July 23 from 6:30 to 7:30 PM at TailGait Market, 328 New Leicester Highway, #142, in Leicester. Humans only, please.

For more information, visit or call (828) 707-0644. This session is sponsored by Pet Behavior Aid, an organization dedicated to to increasing the retention of companion animals in their homes in Western North Carolina.

Free Fearful Dog Session-Asheville, July 20

Be Brave

Pet Behavior Aid will hold a free information session, "Be Brave!," for owners of fearful dogs on Saturday, July 20, from 10 AM to 12 PM. The session will be held at the Asheville Humane Society Adoption & Education Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane, Asheville (off Brevard and Pond Roads, behind Harmony Motors, near the WNC Farmers Market). Humans only, please.

Topics include how to help your dog gain confidence, learning how to understand signs of anxiety and when to step in, how to prevent fear from becoming aggression, and fundamental techniques to help your "wallflower" blossom. 

For more information, visit or call (828) 707-0644. This session is sponsored by Pet Behavior Aid, an organization dedicated to to increasing the retention of companion animals in their homes in Western North Carolina.

Photo credit: Image: Stuart Miles /

Old Wives' Tails About Dogs: Dispelled

By Carol Bryant for The Dog Daily

Old Wives’ Tales About Dogs: Dispelled

Is it true that seven human years are equivalent to one dog year? Can dogs really smell cancer? Here, we debunk some commonly held canine myths.

Dog Age Though many believe one human year equals seven dog years, this is a common misconception. When your dog reaches 2 years of age, it will age about five dog years to every human year in smaller to medium-sized breeds, and one human year for every six to seven dog years in larger breeds.

Nose Color A dog’s nose can actually change color in the winter months due to a condition called snow nose (or winter nose). In winter months, owners of black-nosed dogs may notice their pets’ noses turning a pinkish color, which is believed to be caused by an enzyme deficiency. Any sudden changes should be examined by a veterinarian.

Dog Doctor The ability of dogs to detect cancer via scent receptors (“their sniffer”) is, in fact, a truth. A German research report revealed that dogs are able to find early-stage lung cancer, and countless reports have revealed that canines can sniff a cancerous growth in humans long before the growth is visible with the naked human eye.

Tail Wagging When a dog wags its tail, it is not necessarily a sign of friendliness. Dogs wag when they are fearful, disconcerted, aroused and more. Watch its body language, such as posture and ear positioning, and always ask a dog’s owner about petting it first.

Eating Grass Dogs that eat grass are not necessarily sick. Some dogs may like the taste, but other theories suggest their bodies might instinctively crave nutrients that are lacking in their regular diet.

Guilt Trip Finding a puddle of piddle in the house may not be pleasant for humans, but dogs do not feel guilt when humans disapprove. Instead, they are reacting to the emotional response of their owner, regardless of when the accident occurred.


Carol Bryant is the Social Media and PR Director for Fido Friendly magazine. A frequent media contributor, Carol is a two-time nominee from the Dog Writers Association of America, and she maintains her own dog blog, Fidose of RealityHer articles have previously appeared in The Dog Daily.

Free Leash Training Session-North Asheville, July 16

DogonleashIs your dog friendly towards dogs off-leash, but becomes a wild, reactive beast when restrained? Then this free help session is for you!

Pet Behavior Aid presents "GRRRR! Leash Reactivity Help Session" on Tuesday, July 16 from 7 to 9 PM. It will be held at the Animal Hospital of North Asheville, 1 Beaverdam Road, North Asheville.

Topics include:

  • How to read your dog's signals before he or she erupts
  • Management tools and ideas to reduce reactivity
  • Helpful behaviors to teach your feisty fido
  • How to set up for successful dog greetings

This help session is open to the public and free of charge, but donations will be accepted. The event is for humans only and no registration is required. 

For more information, visit, email, or call (828) 707-0644.

Image: Quinn Dombrowski, Flickr

"Bark & Wine", Hendersonville, July 13

ScreenHunter_01 Jul. 06 14.13Come to St. Paul Mountain Vineyards, 588 Chestnut Gap Road, Hendersonville on Saturday, July 13 from 1 to 5 PM for a special adoption event. Dogs will be available for adoption from Asheville Humane Society, and every adopter age 21 and over will receive a voucher good for a bottle of wine from the vineyards.

Also available will be special dog treats for purchase, plus live music from 3 to 5 PM. Make a donation to help the homeless animals of Buncombe County and you'll enjoy a glass of fine wine at $1 off the regular price. Dogs are welcome to the event too.

Free Puppy Social-Asheville, July 13

ID-10036262Your puppy needs socialization with other dogs to develop into a healthy, balanced pet. Join other puppy owners at a puppy social on Saturday, July 13 from 9 to 10 AM, at Asheville Humane Society's Adoption and Education Center, 14 Forever Friend Lane, Asheville (off Pond and Brevard Roads, behind Harmony Motors, near the WNC Farmers Market).

Mingle with other puppy parents and get your training questions answered by certified trainers while your puppy romps with other pups and meets new and different people and things. Doggie treat bag and human treats provided for all participants.

- Ages 9-20 weeks of age
- Puppies must be healthy
- Must be in home at least 10 days prior to coming to social
- Must have at least 2 sets of vaccinations
(copy of vet records required)
- Rabies vaccine is required (16 weeks and older)

This is a FREE family friendly event, but space is limited! Reserve your puppy’s spot today. Call (828) 707-0644 or email to make a reservation. For more information visit

Image: nixxphotography /

ReTail Scene: True Chews from

ScreenHunter_03 Jul. 06 14.19If you're looking for a line of healthy, tasty chews for your dog, give "True Chews" a try. These products are 100% natural, rawhide-free, and made with no fillers. They're also produced in the U.S.A. -- so you can be confident of product quality.

True Chews features treats your dog will love to chew on, including chicken jerky fillets, beef bully sticks, beef bully spirals, swirls, twists and braids, and pig ears. True Chews includes "Lils," designed especially for dogs up to 20 lbs. Our very own tastes testers tried "Lils Beef Bully Swirls" and they were a big hit.

You can get True Chews from, an online store with over 200 brands of dog food, treats and more, conveniently delivered to your door, with 1 ro 2 day delivery and free shipping on orders of $49 or more. offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, and's customer service is open 24/7 and aims to please. ScreenHunter_02 Jul. 06 14.18

High Country Pet Fest, Banner Elk, July 26-27

ScreenHunter_01 Jun. 05 13.24The Second Annual High Country Pet Fest will be held on Friday, July 26 from 3 PM to 8 PM and Saturday, July 27 from 10 AM to 5 PM in historic downtown Banner Elk, across from the old Banner Elk Elementary School. 

It's a fun-filled time with dog-relatedvendors, musical performance by the Whip Daddys, The Purina’s Incredible Dog Team performing Frisbee toss and agility shows throughout the day, and guest speakers from groomers to veterinarians.

Attendees can enter their dogs in the pet show with categories such as the smallest or largest, youngest or oldest, best tail wagger, most Ear-ristible, best handshake or best smile. Prizes will be awarded.

Local restaurants and individuals are also graciously sponsoring a "Pies for Pets" sale, with all proceeds going directly to Avery County Humane Society. You can pre-order a pie now and pick it up at the Pet Fest. All pies are $25. Call 828-898-5625 to order. 

50th Annual Coon Dog Day Festival-Saluda, July 6

Coondog1Don't miss Saluda's 50th Annual COON DOG DAY -- a celebration homecoming for dogs and their people! It takes place in downtown Saluda, NC on Saturday, July 6, from 8 AM to 11 PM.

There'll be great food, live music, parade, crafts, street dance, and more. What began as a chicken supper fundraiser for the local Coon Club has grown into an event that attracts over 10,000 people each year.

Jump start your morning with the Coon Dog Day 5K run through historic downtown and the surrounding tree-lined streets of Saluda. Registration is open for the race, so sign up now at Check out the Coon Dog Day 5K Facebook page for last year's photos, race sponsors, and new information as it becomes available. 

The parade is a favorite every year and consists of mostly homemade floats, tractors, fire trucks, horses, motorcycles, dogs, and the reigning Coon Dog Royalty Court. The parade begins at 11:00 AM and marches down Main Street for over an hour. Trophies are awarded for the best floats, and the Master of Ceremonies announces the floats as they go by. Food, craft, and local non-profit vendors are set up throughout town with a wide variety of handmade items and foods.

Parking for Coon Dog Day will be at the Party Place & Event Center (formerly Saluda Mountain Jamboree) at a cost of $10 per vehicle. The parking fee will include shuttle transportation for everyone in the vehicle to and from the festival. The Coon Club conducts their shows and contests at the school yard in the afternoon, and people gather for the night street dance, complete with square dancing for all ages.

If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to support Coon Dog Day, please contact Monica Pace at city hall. Call 828-749-2581. Donations are used to help fund the entertainment for the day as well as the shuttle transportation provided.

If you want to be in the Coon Dog Day parade, just show up at the intersection of Ozone Dr. and Thompson Rd/Louisiana Ave by 10:00 AM and an officer will get you lined up. There are no entry applications or fees. Businesses in Saluda are encouraged to enter and compete for some unique awards.

Low Cost Spay/Neuter in Hendersonville

SpayneuterdogSpaying or neutering your pet is the best way to prevent animal over-population. Every Saturday, Community Partnership for Pets will be selling low cost spay/neuter vouchers to Henderson County residents.

On the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month from 12 PM to 3 PM, low cost spay/neuter vouchers will be sold at the Blue Ridge Mall, 4 Seasons Blvd., Hendersonville. On the 2nd Saturday of each month from 12 PM to 3 PM, the vouchers will be sold at Petco, 118 Highland Square Drive, Hendersonville. On the 4th Saturday of each month from 10 AM to 1 PM, the vouchers will be sold at Tractor Supply, 115 Four Seasons Mall, Suite A, Hendersonville. For more information, call (828) 693-5172, or email

Image courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat /

"Pour It Forward... and Save a Life!" Every Thursday in Landrum, SC

ScreenHunter_03 Jun. 11 16.32Stone Soup is a great little restaurant located at 1522 E. Rutherford Street in Landrum, SC. Every Thursday, Stone Soup invites dog lovers to bring their four-legged friends with them to enjoy drinks or dining with dogs on their lovely patio.

Ten percent of all proceeds on Thursdays will benefit Foothills Humane Society, Columbus, NC.

To check out Stone Soup's menus, go to For more information about Foothills Humane Society, visit

Barrel of Fun and Friendship - Cashiers, July 7

ScreenHunter_03 May. 06 09.56When animal shelters and rescue groups join forces and work together, more lives are saved, and more forever homes are found.

Cashiers-Highlands Humane Society and Friends for Live/Forever Farm are clebrating the second year of partnering on behalf of the animals with a fundraising party that benefits both organizations. The party will be held at the Cork & Barrel Restaurant & Loung in Cashiers on Sunday, July 7, from 4 to 8 PM.

For complete details, visit