Weather Updates

Pooch won’t play with kids

Updated: April 10, 2012 9:53AM

Q. The dog was around before the kids. Now my kids are 1 and 3. The dog will not play with them. She just runs away and growls. She will gladly play with adults. Why not the kids?

A. The baby and toddler are dog rivals — not supreme leaders worthy of play pal status, respect and admiration.

To ease the dog into play with the kids, bring out a plaything — a tennis ball is good — and start a game with everybody involved. You and the 3-year-old can take turns throwing the ball and commanding the dog to fetch. The 1-year-old can watch from the sidelines and laugh. When the game ends, allow the 3-year-old, with your supervision, to feed the dog a high-level treat as a reward.

Q. I have found many rest stops on the interstates with outdoor places to walk dogs, but I also see signs that do not allow dogs in the indoor areas where the restrooms are. I am OK with leaving my bichon frise alone in the car for a few minutes when the weather is mild, but I would never consider it in the summer! Do you have any suggestions?

A. You should never leave your dog in the car on a hot day. And you should never tie up your dog outside unsupervised. In dire straits along the highway, Dog Lady probably would ask a kindly looking person walking with a dog in the outdoor rest area to hold darling’s leash while she ran like lightning to the WC.

Q. Our 12-year-old Labrador retriever, Chansey, is blind and diabetic, and her internal food clock has started going off every morning between 4 and 5 a.m. She barks and becomes disoriented. Our veterinarian says this behavior could be the beginning of dementia. Any ideas on how to change her internal food clock?

A. Ask the veterinarian if you can put out a bowl of food on the first floor when you go to bed. Chansey’s eyes might not work anymore but her nose will lead her.

© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit To order a reprint of this article, click here.