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Accommodate Natural Needs Question: I saw your web post about why indoor cats like to roll in the dirt. I work out of town.  Is there any way to bring this “outdoorness” inside while I’m away? Maybe a box of sand or tiny pebbles like in fish tanks? But will he confuse it with his litter box? I’d appreciate your thoughts, even if you think I’m being silly! Dr. Nichol: Silly? Caring for the essential behavioral needs of wild animals [...]

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Vaccination is Safe & Effective Have you ever questioned the significance of “emerging” disease threats? Some stay for years while others seem to fade with yesterday’s news cycle. Real epidemics can wax and wane because of changing weather patterns. Generous summertime rainfall is a beautiful thing but standing water can harbor leptospirosis, an almost forgotten risk in New Mexico but a serious problem for dogs right next door in Texas. “Lepto” is a bacterial infection that’s carried in the urine. [...]

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Set Out-of-Control Dog up for Success Question: My 4 year old dog has been through 2 obedience trainings where she behaved perfectly.  When we get ready to walk in the mornings, she will not stay sitting while I get ready. She also barks and jumps up when someone comes to the door. I try to get her to sit and it is like she doesn’t hear me. I am trying hard to be the leader of the pack but I [...]

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Question: My Airedale Max is tall for his breed and has easy access to the kitchen counters. He likes to “fish” for goodies left unprotected. Max never misses an opportunity and will do it right in front of us. He knows it’s wrong and that he gets punished. We’ve tried spritzing with water, but nothing seems to sink in. Dr. Nichol: Counter surfing is hard for Max to resist. He has the physical stature for it and it’s a self-rewarding [...]

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