Giving a Brussels Griffon a pill

I’ve been working with dogs for over 40 years, owning, medicating and grooming.  Even when I downsized and got my first toy dog (chihuahua) I never had a problem giving a pill.

Squeeze between the gaps of their teeth(on the side), place 1 or 2 fingers on the tongue and press gently.  Voila!  Mouth pops open by reflex.  Put the pill as far back on tongue as possible.  Hold mouth closed, stroke throat until you think they have swallowed.   If the dog licks his lips with his tongue, you can be confident that your dog took the pill.  For the more stubborn who seem to hold pill in throat indefinitely, a small puff of air in face caused a reflexive gasp and down went pill!

And then I got my first Brussels Griffon!

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Brachycephallic dogs

Brachycephalic means “shortened head” and refers to the short nose and flat face of dogs like Pugs, Shih Tzus, and Chihuahuas. Other brachycephalic breeds include Chow Chows, Pekingese, Lhasa Apso, Bull Mastiffs, English Toy Spaniels and of course, our beloved Brussels Griffon.

These animals are short-headed, short-muzzled breeds. They are intentionally bred to look this way, with a normal lower jaw but a compressed upper jaw.  Due to this altered facial construction, all these dogs have what is called brachycephalic respiratory syndrome to varying degrees.

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Are we encouraging bad behavior?

This article is written as if the situations are seen from the eyes of a cute, smart Brussels Griffon (or any dog!)  When you think like a dog you will be amazed how they interpret things and how they train us!

I’ve based this on my own 35+ years of working with and training dogs, and years of Following Victoria Stillwell’s “It’s Me or the Dog”!

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Small Dog Syndrome

Small Dog Syndrome is very real, it refers to a set of undesirable behaviors mostly displayed by small dogs who want to show everyone who’s really the boss.  

It is not genetic, not something some puppies are going to develop, it is most likely caused by how we view our “sweet little puppy” and what we allow them to get away with!

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