April, 2014 - In This Issue:




4 Ways To Prevent Doggie Dandruff


Groom often. Dogs' grooming needs vary greatly, but all dogs benefit from regular brushing. It keeps their coats burr-free, distributes natural oils, and massages the skin.


Lock in moisture. Use moisturizing shampoos and conditioners when you give Fido his bath. After he dries, spritz him with a gentle pet oil available in a spray bottle from holistic pet stores or massage your own all-natural hand cream into his skin.


Special shampoo. If your dog has severe dandruff issues, always consult your veterinarian before attempting treatment. Often, the vet will recommend a medicated shampoo in such cases.


Groom often. Dogs' grooming needs vary greatly, but all dogs benefit from regular brushing. It keeps their coats burr-free, distributes natural oils, and massages the skin.



Dig you Know?
These Doggie Figures


Top 5 states by dog ownership rate.

1 = Arkansas (47.9%)

2 = New Mexico (46%)

3 = Kentucky and Missouri (45.9%)

5 = West Virginia (45.8%)


Number of households that consider dogs part of the family.



Most popular breeds.

Labrador Retriever

German Shepherd

Golden Retriever



Yorkshire Terrier






Male to female ratio among dogs in the U.S.

48.6% male

51.4% female.


Most popular names.

Female = Bella, Daisy, Lucy, Molly, Lola.

Male = Max, Buddy, Charlie, Rocky, Cooper.



Sources: American Veterinary Medical Association, "U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographics Source Book, 2012," and American Kennel Club.

Dig This

Why do dogs dig? Because it's fun. Dogs love to bury or recover bones, dig out prey like mice and rats, or make a nice cooling pit when the weather is warm. Digging isn't a behavior problem, it's normal canine behavior and thoroughly enjoyable for the dog. But it can still be a problem for you and your rose beds. If you have a digger on your hands, give him a place to indulge his hobby.  


Training Healthy Digging Habits
Step 1: Break the habit.  

Is your dog digging in all the wrong places? If so, prevent his access. Your dog won't learn new ways while he has free access to his old digs-digging is just too much fun!

Step 2: Supervise.

Early on, don't use the yard for alone-time. Give your dog ample time to learn where he is allowed to dig before you leave him out there unsupervised. Otherwise it is too easy for him to make mistakes. 

Step 3: Create a digging area.
Make a dig pit or use a large pot with loose potting soil. A dig pit can be a sandbox or a 3-by-6 foot area in your yard. Loosen about 2 feet of earth, and remove any nails or wire or such. A little sand mixed in helps drainage when it rains. Then: 
  • Let your dog see you barely hide a Kong or Nylabone or some other treasure. Encourage him to find the toy and praise him when he does.
  • Gradually cover the toys with more dirt every time. Keep praising.
  • Every now and then hide something new and exciting to keep your dog coming back for more.
Step 4: Interrupt mistakes.  

Calmly stop any unauthorized digging, then lead your dog to his dig pit or digging pot. 


Training Tip:

Digging is often a symptom of boredom-too much time spent in the yard alone. Make sure your dog is getting enough exercise and interaction.

Dogs: Our Winning Technology?

Dogs, any dog lover will tell you, are essential. Without dogs we humans are, as a species, poorer, stymied, incomplete somehow. Many of us cannot imagine modern life without dogs, and if pushed, even hardened dog detractors can usually be made to concede the usefulness of dogs in everything from search & rescue work to livestock herding. Now, however, it seems the significance of dogs to humankind is no longer merely a notion shared by dog fanciers. Recently, an anthropologist presented a compelling case that a possible reason humans won out over Neanderthals in the evolutionary battle for survival was our close relationship with dogs.


The context is one of archaeology's biggest mysteries: why early humans came to dominate and Neanderthals died out. Neanderthals had a lot going for them and shared many traits with early humans. They, too, made advanced tools, had a language, and lived in complex social groups. There are many hypotheses about human ascendancy, and a brand new one, based on analysis of excavation finds and cave art, speculates that we owe it to our domestication of and collaboration with dogs. Dogs, the theory goes, made humans vastly better hunters. They helped us identify and catch prey, and they saved us precious energy by transporting animal carcasses, post-hunt, strapped to their backs. (Paleolithic dogs were big and strong, weighing 70 lbs. and upwards.)


Another component of the theory builds on the "cooperative eye hypothesis," the notion that humans may have evolved the highly visible white parts of our eyes-a distinct disadvantage when hunting-specifically to facilitate better communication with each other. Meaning we can "speak silently" to each other using glances and expressions, and we are the only primates to do so. The only other species with an affinity for eye contact and the ability to follow someone else's gaze? That's right. Dogs. Potentially, we even developed this trait in conjunction with dogs-we shaped one another. Humans may have been dogs' ticket to survival and evolutionary triumph (there are 400 million dogs in the world today, and counting). Wouldn't it be great if they turned out to be ours, too?

Dog in the Spotlight!



Like their larger cousin the Greyhounds, Whippets were engineered for speed. Long, slim legs, a narrow head, defined musculature, and a chest deep enough for powerhouse lungs make these sleek-coated sighthounds aerodynamic athletes-and-a-half. Bred to hunt rabbits for the stewpots of English miners, Whippets have a strong prey drive and will chase anything that moves. They love all manner of speed sports, from agility to lure coursing to track racing, and are spectacular jumpers and on-a-dime turners. In fact, the world's premier Disc Dog competition, The Ashley Whippet Invitational, is named after the Whippet who became known as the greatest frisbee-catching dog of all time.


As fleet-footed as Whippets are outside, indoors they frequently turn into mellow couch potatoes that enjoy family time most of all.


To give a Whippet a second chance, search online for nearby rescue groups.

Lure Coursing:

Here is another sport, like herding and mushing, designed to give dogs an outlet for their innate abilities. Lure coursing mimics a small-prey hunt, something that gets the blood pumping and the paws flying in sighthounds such as Borzoi, Whippets, Greyhounds, Afghans, Basenjis, etc.-and in many other dogs, from Retrievers to Yorkshire Terriers. Dogs chase an artificial lure across a field in a pattern meant to simulate the pursuit of small game. The course is typically between 600 and 1,000 yards long and may include jumps.


Competitions run by the American Kennel Club and American Sighthound Field Association are open only to sighthounds, but AKC's Coursing Ability Test is open to all breeds and many local organizations and clubs offer all-breed lure coursing classes and trials. Where dogs in the sighthound group often require little to no training, other dogs may need practice to get the hang of the game. Not all dogs find it palatable to run as fast as possible away from their human. But chasing down prey is in all canine DNA and many quickly learn to love this fast-paced sport.


Interested in lure coursing with your dog? Google the term plus your locale-or, if you have a sighthound, check out the breed association's website for info on trials near you.





Free Range Grass Fed Buffalo Treats

Bully Sticks, Lung Fillets and Meat Strips


Dogs come in all different shapes and sizes but there are two things they have in common ... they love to chew and they love meat!  Now you can give your dog real chewing satisfaction that's not only delicious but also all natural and completely healthy with our free-range, grass-fed buffalo chews.


Just in!!  TOP TAILS� just received our shipment of the ALL NEW Life's Abundance Bully Sticks, Lung Filets and Meat Strips dog treats!  You can order them from us online and have them shipped or hand delivered to your home or you can come by our shop at 4374 Main Street in Manayunk and make an in-person purchase.  Please check out the entire line of dog food, cat food and treats we carry.


Our fully staffed office is available to answer any questions at all about the pet food and treats we sell.  We're looking forward to seeing you and your pups soon!


TOP TAILS� Pet Sitting & Dog Walking Company is proud to be an independent distributor of Life's Abundance veterinarian formulated, all natural, holistic pet food, treats and supplements.


"We'll provide your Pets with Love and Quality Care"� 



Since early 2005, TOP TAILS� Pet Sitting and Dog Walking has been based on the belief that the clients' (parents and pets) needs are of the utmost importance. Our entire team is committed to meeting those needs. As a result, a high percentage of our business is from repeat clients and referrals. If you haven't tried us out yet, we would welcome the opportunity to earn your trust and deliver you the best service in the area. Of course, if you are already a client, we look forward to continuing our relationship with you and your furry family!

TOP TAILS� Pet Sitting and Dog Walking    
4374 Main Street (Manayunk)
Philadelphia, PA  19127
OFFICE 215.508.1903



Voted #1 "Best Pet Sitting Company" in Philadelphia

Fox Philly Hot List 2010 AND 2011

TOP TAILS Pet Sitting and Dog Walking covers the following neighborhoodsManayunk, Roxborough,
Andorra, Wissahickon, East Falls, Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy, Germantown, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.