I have an interesting story to tell today. Yesterday, I had my dog playing in the park and he began to dig a hole. Normally I would have stopped him because he was digging right by the playground gym that the kids play on, but I let him dig. I could always fill in the hole later. We wanted to see what he was digging for. He dug a hole about the size of a bucket, almost a foot deep. It began to fill up with water, then he took a drink. Now the question is, did he smell that water? He is only a nine month old German Shepherd. So my tip for today is, let your dog explore. We are always so quick to pull them away from everything, “leave it” we say, which is a good policy, but if it doesn’t look like they are getting into any real danger, let them be dogs.
Tag Archives: German Shepherd
After taking your dog for a walk, especially in wooded areas, don’t forget to check them for ticks. Get your dog used to being touched and examined all over by grooming and touching them daily. They will grow to enjoy this. They like a little back massage too.
Did you know that a German Shepherd has 220 million Olfactory (smell) receptor cells? Humans only have about 5 million. Did you know that at the ends of these receptor cells there are around 100 to 150 cilia. We only have about six. Cilia are not hairs, even though many people like to describe them like that. They are cellular organelles that are used for movement. These organelles help the dog move scent vapors through it’s nose. A dog also has a wet nose, (our nose is only wet on the inside). The moisture helps trap the scent molecules. The dogs nose is also shaped like a comma. This causes vapors entering the nose to travel in a circular path which increases the travel path through the nose. There is also an organ called a Jacob’s Organ or vomeronasal organ, which is a sacklike organ found in many animals. It is well developed in dogs. These structures not only allow a dog’s nose to detect scent molecules, they allow for separation of those molecules, much the way a gas chromatograph separates molecules in a chemistry laboratory. And finally, a dogs olfactory lobe is very large. It is the size of a walnut in a German Shepherd and only the size of a pea in our brain. So when you see your dog sniffing around, or following an air or ground scent, just realize that we cannot even relate to how well they smell things.