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How to Clean Your Dog’s Ears

Preventative care is always best, which is why regular checking and cleaning of ears is so important. Just like clipping a dog’s toenails, cleaning your dog’s ears is suggested so that your puppy gets used to it as soon as possible. You can do this by gently holding the ear. And massaging it and turning over the ear flap while playing with your puppy.

If your dog doesn’t like to be touched on the ears, a gentle spritz of Calming Floral Spray can help him to stay calm. If you’re the nervous one you can even use the calming spray on yourself. It works wonders! Don’t forget that it’s important to ease your dog into it slowly. You want your puppy to associate ear cleaning with something positive. A good idea is to always have treats ready to offer him each time he is well-behaved during the process.

Most of the breeds have smooth, hair-free ear canals that require only regular whipping with cotton wool and Ear Cleaner.

How to clean your dog’s ears.

Wet a cotton ball with Vita Canis Ear Cleaner. Wipe the part of the ear that you can easily see, the inside of the outer flap. Then wet a new cotton ball to clean a little further into the inner ear. Make sure you use a new piece of cotton wool for each ear! Ideally, you want to do this about once a week. You want to keep your dog’s ears free from infection and smelling sweet. Alternatively, you can put a few drops of the Ear Cleaner inside of the ear, massage it. Then wipe thoroughly with cotton wool.

Ear plucking.

If your dog has a lot of hair coming from the ear canal some of it may need to be plucked. This will enable the free flow of air into the ear. Plucking can easily be done with your fingers. By gently but firmly holding a little bit of the hair growing inside the ear. There are also special ear powders that may help you in gripping the hair) and pulling. Do just a little bit at a time to avoid discomfort. Then use the Ear Cleaner to clean your dog’s ears.

Just like with human ears, you never want to use cotton buds because they can hurt your dog’s ears. Instead opt for cotton wool or cotton pads.

Here are some facts about a dog’s ear and what we should be looking for when we check the ear:

Ear infections in dogs are most commonly caused by a range of factors, including bacteria, yeast, ear mites. Also excessive hair, moisture or wax, foreign bodies and allergies. The ear canal in dogs is mostly vertical. Unlike the human ear canal, which is horizontal. Therefore it is easy for debris and moisture to be retained in the canal itself leading to problems.

When to see the vet.

If your dog shows sudden signs of ear pain, inflammation of the ear flap (redness), ear odour, discharge, continual head shaking or drooping of the ear please have your veterinarian check it out. There may be an infection or it could even be that a foreign body is present causing the infection.

Methods of transmission of infection include direct penetration from the external environment, overgrowth of microflora in the ear itself (perhaps due to stress), hot weather or other factors (immunosuppression or injury for example).

How are you getting on with ear cleaning? Do you find it stressful or easy?

Stay safe!

Love, Jitka xx

How To Clip Your Dog’s Nails

Step by Step

Nail clipping is one of the many things that dog owners have had to have a go at for the first time during lockdown. Do you know how to clip your dog’s nails?

You see, just like our nails, a dog’s nails constantly grow. Unlike their ancestors whose claws were worn down by running, hunting and keeping busy, most of today’s dogs don’t move that much. Even when they do it’s on much softer surfaces such as indoor carpets or lawns and sadly these don’t have the same effect 😂. You might also think that because you often walk your dog in fields, meadows and woods (like me) that his/her nails will be fine but there’s no chance the nails will wear down and stay short, unfortunately.

Your puppy & nail clipping.

It’s a good idea to get into the habit of clipping your dog’s nails from an early age. You’ll be surprised how long and sharp the nails of a 3-4-week-old puppy are! Between the age of 3 and 4 weeks, it’s very easy to start cutting their nails as puppies don’t protest because they are so small. The hook of the nail is also easily visible and sometimes even the quick. For those of you who don’t know, the quick is the middle section of the nail where the nerve and blood vessels are. This part of the nail must be avoided with nail clippers because cutting it will cause your dog pain and bleeding.

The fear of nail clipping, the fear of cutting the quick.

The fear of cutting the quick puts a lot of dog owners off of clipping their dog’s nails, which is fully understandable, however, sometimes we have to do things we aren’t comfortable with. You have to think about it differently… you’re actually helping your dog! Long nails put pressure on the nail bed which causes your dog discomfort and even pain – I’d imagine it feels like wearing very tight shoes all the time. Over time, the pressure on the joints can cause changes in them and make the foot look flat. With all this in mind, you can see that by cutting your dog’s nails you’re not only protecting your wooden floor and furniture but you’re also maintaining your dog’s healthy feet.

How to clip your dog’s nails

How do you know your dog’s nails need clipping ?

  • Look at your dog while he or she is standing on a flat surface. If the nails are touching the floor, your dog’s nails need clipping.
  • Another good indicator is when your dog is moving around your house on a wooden, laminated or tiled floor and you hear that click clack click clack sound.

What do you need to get before you start clipping your dog’s nails?

  • Nail clippers – there are two basics styles namely scissors and guillotine… it’s all about personal preference. Personally, I prefer the scissors type. Some of them even have a safety stop that limits the amount of nail trim.
  • Calming Floral Spray – to keep you and your dog calm during the process.
  • Soothing Antiseptic Spray – This spray will help if an accident occurs and you cut the nail too short. Soothing Antiseptic spray is an astringent, meaning that it contracts, tightens and binds tissues.

Nail clipping – step by step:

  • Hold your dog’s  foot at front of you in a natural position.
  •  Hold dog’s toe between your thumb and finger gently but firmly.
  •  If you can see the quick, place the nail clipper at the point where the pink stops.
  •  If you can’t see the quick, tak the hook off the nail first.
  •  Check the end of the nail.
  •  If you see a black circle in the middle of the nail bed, it’s the blood vessel. But not the part that bleeds.
  •  Cut off another small section.
  •  Keep cutting until the darker circle covers most of the nail.
  •  When you see a small white dot in the middle, it is as far as you can cut without cutting into the quick. 

How do you feel about nail clipping? Did you give it a go?

Stay safe!

Love, Jitka xx

Getting a Puppy During Lockdown.

Have you been thinking of getting a puppy for some time? The lockdown might have provided you with the perfect opportunity. But there are many crucial things you have to consider before getting a puppy during lockdown.

Is this the perfect time to get a puppy?

Financially it can be difficult but timewise it’s perfect. You don’t have to take time off work to spend time with your puppy, and to learn to live together, and train him or her. I purposely didn’t say socialize him, as it is pretty much impossible.

How we did it.

We had a litter of Lakeland terriers recently and people came to see them just before lockdown set in. Once the puppies were old enough to go to their new homes we had to deliver them for the simple reason that collecting a puppy was not an essential journey. By the Kennel Club rules we were able  to deliver puppies to their new homes.

It was strange to social distance when we delivered them. There was a quick bit of information given and then we had to leave. It just didn’t feel right… but not much does these days I guess. I missed the little things like showing the new owner how to brush the puppy. Thank God for the internet so that we can Facetime and still help them as much as we can.

Getting a puppy during the lockdown.

It’s lockdown and you’ve got a new puppy.

Even though, to some extent, it’s nice to be at home with him all the time, it’s not going to be like this forever. The time will come when you’ll have to go back to work, to the hairdresser, or the doctor and it’s very important to prepare your puppy for such a situation.

Prepare your puppy for the real life.

You can start by leaving your puppy in a separate room for a short period of time after saying a quiet goodbye (not a big scene with a long speech about how sorry you are for leaving him or her). Fend off the tears and refrain from anxious hugging because your puppy won’t understand what’s happening and why you’re stressed and worried. Once you leave the room, keep quiet and still so that your puppy knows what it feels like to be alone. After a few minutes return to the room and this way your puppy will learn quickly that when you leave you’ll always return. Don’t forget that you can use Calming Floral Spray  on yourself and the puppy to help you to adjust! 

Noises & sounds.

If you can’t go out with your puppy yet, perhaps because he/she hasn’t had its second vaccination or because you are self-isolating, you can improvise when it comes to different sounds. I would recommend to get the COA Noises & Sounds CD. This CD contains everyday sounds from inside and outside the home. This is a proven technique for the prevention of sound phobias, recommended by vets and anima behaviourists. This CD has a wide variety of sounds and comes with a comprehensive training manual. 

Physical contact.

Just as sounds are important, so is physical contact – and I’m not just talking about stroking your puppy. One day your puppy will be handled by a vet, a groomer or a show judge and he/she needs to be prepared for it. While your puppy is on your lap, stroke her ears, flip them up and look inside. Touch the tail, vertebrae by vertebrae over the whole length and gently stroke the legs from the top to the toes. Softly massage the toes and look in between the pads. This applies to the mouth too. Gently open the mouth and check the teeth and gums.

Regular brushing & combing.

Lastly, regular brushing and combing has to be introduced from an early age. You can find a few useful tips in my blog “REAL puppy grooming tips”.

Are you a new puppy owner? Tell us what do you enjoy and what do you find challenging?

Natural Cleaners For The Win

Spending more time at home and having more time, in general, has allowed me to do a few jobs which I’ve been procrastinating about for a very long time and deep cleaning is one of them. You know, like sorting the cupboards and draws, getting everything out, cleaning it, checking the labels and then putting everything back in some kind of order. This time I’m sticking to the order… well, at least trying.

As a big believer of an ‘all-natural’ approach and a minimal waste lifestyle, I like to bulk buy these two natural cleaners which I use at home:

Bicarbonate of soda and vinegar.

Baking soda = Bicarbonate of soda.

Bicarbonate of soda (sodium bicarbonate), also commonly known as baking soda, is a white solid that is crystalline but often appears as a fine powder. It has many uses around the house and I LOVE to use it to:

1) Deodorise the fridge.

Bicarbonate of soda is an incredible deodoriser. Whether you’ve left fish, meat or cheese in your refrigerator for too long, cleaning with bicarbonate of soda is sure to help. Just apply a mixture of baking soda and water to the inside of the fridge, rub and then remove with a dry cloth. You can also keep a cup of baking soda in the back of your fridge to absorb the most stubborn smells – just remember to replace it every 2-3 months.

2) Deodorise shoes.

If that nasty odour comes from your shoes instead of the fridge, baking soda can still help! Sprinkle a cup of it inside your shoes and let it sit overnight. Not only will the smell fade away, but this low-cost solution will also help kill bacteria caused by sweat.

3) Clean surfaces.

Kitchen and bathroom cleaning can take a lot of time – especially if you have to deal with sticky countertops, greasy drawers and delicate surfaces. You can clean them easily if you combine bicarbonate of soda with white vinegar. The fizzing action helps to break down stubborn messes and can power through coffee and rust stains.

4) Freshen the home.

While cleaning with baking soda can help remove smells in specific areas like the fridge, it can also be used to freshen your home in general. Use it as a DIY air freshener by placing small plates of it around your home to absorb bad smells. Just make sure it’s far out of reach of pets or kids!

5) Unblock clogged sinks and drains.

Slow-moving drains in the bathroom and kitchen can be a nightmare. Unclog them by using a solution of bicarbonate of soda, water and white vinegar. First, pour a full pot of hot water down the drain, add a glass of baking soda and warm white vinegar and let it fizz. Then rinse with hot water again.

6) Refresh mattresses.

I also use bicarbonate of soda to deodorise mattresses. I sprinkle a full cup of bicarbonate of soda to freshen up a mattress. Then I let it sit for a couple of hours and then gently vacuum to clean.


Vinegar is an aqueous solution of acetic acid and trace chemicals that may include flavourings. It typically contains 5–8% acetic acid by volume. The acetic acid is usually produced by the fermentation of ethanol or sugars by acetic acid bacteria.

Standard white vinegar is a clear solution generally containing 4–7% acetic acid and 93–96% water. Some types of white vinegar can contain up to 20% acetic acid, but these are strictly for agricultural or cleaning purposes and not intended for human consumption. I buy 5% or 12%.

Now for its many uses:

1) Clean fruit & vegetables.

I mix up a vinegar solution and use for washing fresh fruits and vegetables. The vinegar dissolves wax that may be coating the surface of fruits & veggies, and also removes pesticide residues. Then I rinse the vegetables and fruits thoroughly with warm water.

2) General cleaning around the home.

I use a solution of half white vinegar and half water (and sometimes only neat vinegar) mixed in a spray bottle to clean the interior of the fridge and many other surfaces throughout the house clean. A quick spray and wipe down removes odours, cleans the interior, and kills off mildew and mould spores and germs. I also use ti for cleaning kitchen surface, mirrors, tiles, and windows.

3) Clean up pet accidents

Remove odour and pet urine stains by dabbing the stain with a cloth soaked in 1/4 cup of vinegar diluted with a quart of water. Dab the mess repeatedly until the spot and odour are removed, let it dry and then test for a smell. If you still can smell it, repeat the process. The trick here is that you don’t want allow the stain to soak into the foam padding of the carpet or furniture. Once the foam is soaked, the odour is nearly impossible to get out.

4) To clean your microwave.

I easily clean my microwave with equal parts of hot water and vinegar. I place the mixture in a small bowl and microwave it for five minutes. The steam loosens any dried-on mess and makes it easy for me to wipe it away. You can also use a small bowl of lemon juice or lemon juice and water to get the same results and as a bonus, it’s the best way to remove any odours and leave it smelling fresh! And you’ll love your bright, shiny, clean microwave again.

Do you use baking soda & vinegar at home? Would you mind sharing your tips?

Stay safe,

Jitka xx

What People Say...

Used you’re Calming Floral  Spray yesterday was so impressed with it . I had a dog in my salon that has dryer seizures and gets anxious. I sprayed it around her and was remarkable the difference in her behaviour. It actually worked so well I had to check dog was okay she was very relaxed snoozing I’ve tried other remedy’s with no real effect shall be sticking with your calming spray from now on 😍
Lisa Addison