Tails Blog


Steve Coppell - Monday, October 07, 2013

Because it's spring let's talk about allergies

Allergies occur when a persons immune symptom reacts to substances that are normally harmless.



Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include sneezing, wheezing, runny nose, sore, red or itchy eyes, itchy skin to name a few.

Allergic reactions to pet hair

People often associate an allergic reaction to pets and more especially to pet hair, when in fact this unpleasant reaction is usually caused by pet dander, which is flakes of dry dead skin released with the hair.

Low allergenic dog breeds 

People who suffer from allergies can still have dogs for pets. There are a number of breeds that are naturally low allergenic. These include Shih tzu, Bichon frise, Schnauzer, poodle to name a few.

Dogs that suffer with allergies

Dogs can suffer with allergies too. They can react to plants and weeds that grow in their yard, foods they shouldn't eat, or flea bites.

Allergic reactions often show up as red raw itchy skin. Left untreated this condition can lead to on going skin conditions that may include bare skin, sores and infection. A quick trip to the vet is often required. 

Dust mite

This is what a dust mite looks like up close. Dust mites and pet dander are the leading cause of allergenic reactions in pet owners. 

Grooming your dog

Steve Coppell - Sunday, September 29, 2013



How often should I groom my dog?

Its a good idea to groom your dog regularly, depending on the type of coat your breed has.  High maintenance breeds need a professional groom every 6 to 8 weeks, as opposed to low maintenance breeds that may only need grooming twice yearly.

Why do I need to groom my dog?
Dogs generally go through a seasonal coat change twice a year. A groom helps to clear the old coat to allow the new season coat to come through. 
Grooming helps to decrease the shedding, this means less mess in your house.
Your groomer should get your dogs coat to look, feel and smell great, but while they groom they also get a good look at your dogs skin, ears and eyes and can identify any issues relating skin complaints etc.
Dogs often enjoy the grooming process and they certainly appreciate the feel of a clean groomed coat.

Care of my dogs nails

Groomers also take care of trimming your dogs nails.
Walking your dog regularly on hard surfaces like concrete paths will help to keep your dogs nails trim. Often though smaller breeds don't maintain a good nail length on their own this way, or they may have dew claws that don't make contact with a path surface. This could lead to sore feet and other on going issues.
Often your dog will be more excepting of the process of a nail trim from a groomer than they will be for their owners.

What if I want to groom my dog at home?
Tails has a great range of products if you decide you'd  prefer to groom your dog at home. Just click below to find out more

Great range of products for grooming your dog at home.

We offer grooming services here in Lower Hutt!!

Are you in the Wellington region? Perhaps you would like to make an appointment for your dogs groom or just want some advice. We would love to hear from you!

Contact Emma at home 04 5653133 or on her cell phone at 0277238726
Or e mail emma@tails.co.nz

Find a solution for your dogs anxiety

Steve Coppell - Friday, August 03, 2012

Many dogs suffer daily with anxiety. Fear of thunder, separation anxiety, car or travel anxiety. Dogs react to stress and change just like we do, the list goes on. 

How do I know if my dog is suffering with anxiety?
Your dog can't tell you why they are anxious, but you can be sure they will express stress and anxiety in their day to day behaviour. So your looking at your dogs body language and behaviour. 

For example the body language of fear might include:

*The tail tucked under their bottom
*Ears back flat against the head
*Head lowered with cowering type behaviour
*Frequent licking of lips
*Nervous behaviour and frequent yawning
*Body shivering 

Examples of separation anxiety might include:

*Excessive drooling
*Barking, howling
*Chewing of furniture and property
*A generally depressed or withdrawn nature

What can be done to help alleviate my dogs stress and discomfort?

One method of soothing and calming anxiety in dogs is the use of pressure or anxiety wraps. Wrapping is similar to swaddling an infant and uses a technique called maintained pressure. The wrap provides constant, gentle pressure to your dogs torso and chest. This has been found to work as an effective alternative to anti depressant drug therapy.    

Tails is please to offer the Thundershirt as an effective, drug free, alternative treatment for anxiety in dogs. They are available in sizes to suit your dog.

Click here to learn more about the thundershirt

Hot Spots and Skin Allergies

Steve Coppell - Tuesday, September 13, 2011

What are the causes of skin conditions and hot spots in dogs and cats?

An allergy is a hypersensitivity disorder of the immune system. Essentially our pets immune system over reacts. Cats and dogs are susceptible to an allergic response in the same way that we are. Our pets often experience allergies in the form of skin conditions as a consequence. 

Flea Bites

Saliva in the bite from a flea causes an over reaction that creates irritation. 

Dietary Allergy

As the title suggests, things our pets eat can cause an allergic response. Our pets can even suffer an allergic response to common food compounds such as protein or carbohydrates. But often its a preservative or dyes in the food. 

Atopic Dermatitis

This condition is often hereditary. Certain breeds are more susceptible. Dogs with this affliction often have itchy eyes, muzzle, ears and/or feet. Common inhaled allergens include pollen, grass, plants, dust mites and mould. Inhalant allergies cause scratching, chewing and licking. This leads to secondary infections and further discomfort.

Hot Spots

A hot spot is an acutely inflamed area of skin irritation, caused or made worst by your dogs licking or biting.

What can I do to help if my pet suffers from skin conditions mentioned above?

Tails now stock BioPet Grasses. This product is made in New Zealand. It is a homoeopathic compound specially designed for pets troubled by grasses.  

Aniwell Active Manuka Honey is an excellent product for damaged or irritated skin. It can be used on Horses, Dogs, Cats, Cattle Pigs Sheep and Goats. It is effective, all natural and made in New Zealand. 


Tips for teaching your pup to come when called.

Steve Coppell - Tuesday, June 21, 2011

So why does it all go wrong when pup seemed to be listening really well initially?

Two things often occur when people first get their new pup and they decide to teach it to come on command.

Firstly, what most new owners find is that pup initially comes when it's called really well, ( say about the first 4 months ). This is because they are still really young and so very attached and dependant on you. But as they get older the command seems to wear off and they stop coming.

Secondly, a lot of new pup owners fail to use a leash when trying to teach the animal to come. When pup is not on a leash they have a choice whether they come or not. Giving pup a choice is a training no no.

So how should we train pup to come when called?

Put on his collar and attach a long retractable lead. Have some treats ready. Call pup enthusiastically, you can clap your hands, stoop down, or take a couple of steps backward.

Give him a treat when he comes to you and lots of encouragement. When he has finished the treat, let him off to explore again. ( doing this teaches him that being called to come doesn't necessarily mean that play time is over )

Repeat this exercise over and over increasing the number and closeness of distractions that are luring him, until he comes automatically every time. Then, and only then do you take him off the leash and start the process over again until he comes each time you call. 

Giving your pet their pill

Steve Coppell - Saturday, June 11, 2011

One way to get a reluctant pet to take medicine is to open the animal's jaws wide and pop the pill in their mouth. Place it on top of their tongue, as far back as you can without causing discomfort. Then hold their jaw closed and massage their throat. Sometimes blowing a quick puff of air over their face is effective, (when they blink they swallow). Don't release their jaws until the pill is swallowed. Once you are sure the pill has been swallowed, let go of the jaw and watch to see that the pill doesn't get spit out. If it does repeat the exercise from the beginning.

Pets and Bad Breath

Steve Coppell - Saturday, June 11, 2011

Bad breath in pets is just as offensive as it is in humans. But besides being a turn off, halitosis can be a sign of a health problem. It may indicate an accumulation of tartar on your pet's teeth, which can result in gingivitis, or gum disease. ( Bad teeth and gums also produce bacteria that your pet will swallow, causing other health concerns). Or it may be a sign of digestive problems.
What can be done?
For tartar control, feed your dog or cat some dry food every day. Or give your dogs bones to chew.

4 ways to calm your new pups first night blues

Steve Coppell - Saturday, June 11, 2011

Imagine spending your first six to eight weeks of life with your mother, brothers and sisters. You have a mother that feeds you and looks after you and a constant source of playmates and warm bodies to sleep next to. All of a sudden, a strange smelling person picks you up and takes you away from your family. You are left on a bed or in a box without any of the warmth or safe smells and other comforts you have grown up with. Sound scary? Try these suggestions to make your puppies first night in their new home a little more comfortable.
1/  Purchase a heat pad or a hot water bottle and place it underneath a towel or their blanket.
2/  Give them something soft and warm to sleep on such as a old fleece jersey.
3/  Sometimes if you turn a radio on with the volume down low this will offer comfort.
4/  Ask the breeder for something that smells of the pups mother and siblings such as a piece of cloth or toy.

A purpose built dog crate is a good idea. This becomes their own bedroom space, that will also help with house training.
Regardless, be prepared for a few nights of unsettled sleep. Don't give in to constantly checking on your upset pup during the night. They quickly learn this is how to get your attention. Likewise be clear about their sleeping arrangements. Stick to the plan. You know who to blame if you come home to find them sleeping on your bed, ( if you let them sleep with you in your bed to begin with).

Give that pup plenty to chew on

Steve Coppell - Saturday, June 11, 2011

For teething puppies and many older dogs, chewing is an urge that's hard to resist, so make sure you provide your new dog with plenty of alternatives to your shoes or furniture. Offer them chew toys made of hard nylon, such as nylabones. Start right away to draw your pet's attention to their new chew toys and offer lot's of praise when they use them.

Dog takes owner for a walk

Steve Coppell - Sunday, April 17, 2011


Who walks who?
Untrained dogs will often pull on their lead. This experience hinders your daily walk and quickly turns this quality time with your pet into a chore.
Anyone who has tried to restrain an untrained dog with a choke chain will tell you it simply doesn't work effectively, and that their pet would pull on a choke chain. In some cases till its oxygen supply is cut long enough that it lapses into unconscious.

What can I use to help prevent this? 
Purchase a gentle leader. This product  works immediatly, regardless of breed, size, age, or experience.
It`s design encourages calm and restraint when walking your dog.

How does it work?

<p />
Who walks who? <p />
Untrained dogs will often pull on their lead. This experience hinders your daily walk and quickly turns this quality time with your pet into a chore.<p />
Gentle leaders work immediatly, regardless of breed, size, age, or experience.<p />
It`s design encourages calm and restraint.<p />
The gentle leader is not a muzzle.<p />
When properly fitted, a dog can open its mouth to eat, drink, pant, fetch, and bark.<p />
It works by applying gentle pressure on calming points, and eliminating uncomfortable pressure on the throat.<p />
Anyone who has tried to restrain an untrained dog with a choke chain will tell you it simply doesnt work effectively, and that their pet would pull on a choke chain. In some cases till its oxygen supply is cut long enough that it lapses into unconscious.<p />
The gentle leader is an effective tool for training unwanted behaviors that range from leash pulling, lunging, to barking, jumping, chasing, digging etc.<p />
We encourage dog owners to train their pets with this product.<p />
<p />
The gentle leader allows owners to communicate with their pet in a way that dogs instinctively understand. The nose loop encircles the dogs muzzle. When light pressure is applied to the muzzle, your dog recognises this response, that it's place as the leader of the pack has been checked! The urge to pull in front will decrease. You are now the leader of pack.


The gentle leader is not a muzzle.
When properly fitted, a dog can open its mouth to eat, drink, pant, fetch, and bark.
The gentle leader is an effective tool for training unwanted behaviours that range from leash pulling, lunging, to barking, jumping, chasing, and digging.  We encourage dog owners to train their pets with this product.

Where can I get one?
Tails can sell you a gentle leader delivery free. We usually deliver in two working days. If you want to know more, just click on Gentle Leader for my dog.
We have a size to suit your dog.