5 Tips for Pet Safety on Halloween

Throwing a party or trick-or-treating, Halloween is a fun and exciting time for everyone. Including your pets in family activities is a normal part of any type of event. Dogs and cats are valued family members. Following pet safety tips will help your pet be safe throughout all your Halloween activities.

5 Pet Safety Tips on Halloween

During Halloween activities, keep a watchful eye on your pets. Being proactive in pet safety will keep your beloved four-legged companion from an emergency vet visit. Consider the following areas for protecting your pet on Halloween.

Keep Halloween Candy in a Safe Place

Candy, especially chocolate, is a typical Halloween treat. Even though candy is tasty to humans, consuming chocolate can be lethal for pets. Keeping your bowl of candy or your children’s trick-or-treat stash in a safe place is essential for pet safety on Halloween.

Create a Safe Haven for Your Pets

Halloween activities can be noisy. Creating a safe haven for your pet helps reduce stress and anxiety.

  • Crate: If your pet feels comfortable in a crate, allow him or her to retreat to a familiar place.
  • Unused Room: Allow your pet to retreat to an unused room.
  • Bring Pets Indoors: Unfortunately, not everyone respects animals, bring your pets indoors for safety. Many outdoor pets are abused or go missing on Halloween.

Watch Your Door

Handing out candy is a significant part of Halloween. Children (and adults) in costumes can be scary for your dogs or cats. A normally well-behaved dog may try to attack. Keeping your dogs back from the door will protect you, your dog, and your trick-or-treaters. When you’re handing out candy, your cat may slip through an opened door. Watching your door at all times will help keep your pets safe and secure.

Secure Your Halloween Decor

Decorating for Halloween adds extra fun to the holiday. But unsecured decoration can create hazardous situations for your dog or cat.

  • Wires and Cords: Loose cords or cables can quickly become dangerous for your pets. Your four-legged friend can chew or get tangled up. The result could be deadly for your pet.
  • Candles: Lighted candles add atmosphere to your Halloween party. But open flames are a high risk to your pets. Your dog or cat could tip the candle over, causing a fire. Using flameless candles around pets is critical to prevent fires and the possibility of being burned.
  • Glow Sticks: Glow sticks are a popular choice for costumes, pumpkins, and other fun. If your dog chews on a glow stick, the contents can cause sickness. Keep all glow sticks away from your pet.

Dressing Up Your Pet

Be cautious when dressing up your pet for Halloween. Ask yourself, does my pet enjoy the costume? Many pets may become anxious if dressed up. If your pet does like the costume, check the material over to ensure your pet is safe. For example, dangling strings may cause your pet to trip. Your pet may chew on the strings causing sickness or choking.

Keep your Halloween enjoyable by implementing standard safety measures for your pets.

Celebrating National Dog Day

Did you know August 26 is National Dog Day? An entire day celebrating your faithful companion, best friend, and beloved family member. Responsible pet owners are fully aware of the importance a dog brings to a home.  Today is just a reminder to pass along some extra love.

Ways to Celebrate National Dog Day 

  • Go for a Nature Walk: Spend extra time outdoors by going for a nature walk. Go to your local pet-friendly park to enjoy some quality time together.
  • Go Hiking: An active dog would love the extra challenge of a hike. With all the new smells, going to a new location is a great experience for your dog.  
  • Go to the Lake or Beach: Does your dog love the water? Spend an afternoon at your favorite pet-friendly beach or lake. 
  • Go to the Dog Park: Spend time together at your local dog park. Or for an added treat, explore a new dog park in the area. 
  • Host a Dog Party: Spend time with your friends and their dogs by hosting an afternoon dog party. 
  • Make a Homemade Dog Treat: Pinterest is a great resource for finding pet-friendly dog treats and meals. Bake something special for National Dog Day. 
  • Buy a New Toy: Bring home your dog a new toy or chew bone or both. 
  • Purchase New Bedding: Has your dog outgrown his current bed? Purchase a new bed and blanket as part of the dog day celebration. 
  • Purchase New Collar: Does your dog need a new collar? Buy your dog some extra gifts, a new collar, leash, and doggie clothes. 
  • Take Photos: Hire a professional to take photos of you and your dog together. Or spend the day taking selfies of you and dog together. Put the photos in an album or hang on the way to remind you of the day. 
  • Cuddle Time: Give your dog some extra love. Cuddle together on the couch. (Your dog will not care if you’re watching Netflix at the same time.)
  • Adopt: Have you been considering adopting a dog? Make the experience special by adopting a dog or two on National Dog Day. 
  • Volunteer: Are you unable to adopt a dog right now but have some extra time? Consider volunteering at your local shelter or rescue. Numerous organizations need help in many areas including cleaning pens and walking the dogs. 
  • Donate: Is your time limited right now? Consider donating to celebrate National Dog Day. Many shelters, rescues or other dog organizations have wish lists. Donating products off the list helps in many ways. If you do not have time to shop, monetary donations are always welcomed. 

 

 

Back to School and Your Dog

Back to school is an exciting time for your children. New bedtime routines, homework, sports, and other extracurricular activities quickly fill your schedule. The new commitments may result in your dog being home alone for extended amounts of time. Keeping your dog happy may require some extra quality time.

Ways to Spend Quality Time With Your Dog

Your dog loves attention from everyone in your family. Sneaking in some quality time will help ease the transition of returning to school. Consider the following ideas to help you or your family members spend more time with your dog.

Get Outdoors

On nice days, skip your gym routine to spend outdoor time with your dog.

  • Go for a long walk with your dog.
  • Hike together at a nearby nature trail.
  • Bike or skateboard with your dog by your side.
  • Go to the dog park.
  • Do outdoor chores together.

Go for Car Rides Together

When the weather permits, bring your dog along to run errands. When your dog is with you, always keep a close watch on the weather. Extreme heat or cold will quickly affect your dog’s health.

Visit Pet-Friendly Shops

Many stores welcome pets. Bringing your dog to the local pet store is the perfect opportunity to spend time together. Allow your dog to find a new toy or bone.

Special Treats

Do something special just for your dog.

  • Make homemade dog food.
  • Bake homemade treats.
  • Bring home a special treat from the pet store.

Cuddle Time

After a long day, cuddling on the couch together may be exactly what you and your dog needs.

When back to school schedules are full, make an effort to spend quality time with your dog. Talk to your dog as much as possible. Your dog loves being with you and loved ones.

 

 

 

Celebrating World Cat Day

Today, August 8th is World Cat Day or International Cat Day. In either case, the day is all about celebrating cats. whether you have one or eight, cats add their own unique presence to your home.

Named after Hermoine’s cat in the Harry Potter series, Crookshanks is one of my six cats.

Creating mischief and joy, cats have been around for centuries. Cats are curious creatures by nature.

Did you notice Mr. Buttons has blue paws? I thought my project was dry. Apparently not in the middle, I had blue cat tracks all over my kitchen. Don’t worry, I only use non-toxic paint. When the vet stopped laughing, he said my cat would be fine.

Celebrating World Cat Day is a perfect way to pay extra attention to your furry companion.

Ideas for Celebrating The Day With Your Cat

  • Build a catio to allow your cat to safely enjoy the outdoors.
  • Buy a cat tree or cat condo
  • Buy a new scratching post.
  • Get a new comfy cat bed.
  • Make cat toys
  • Make homemade cat treats.
  • Purchase special treats.
  • Brush and groom your cat.

Adopt a Cat

Adopting a cat is another way to celebrate World Cat Day. Many shelters and rescues are at capacity. Adopting a kitten, adult cat, or a senior cat makes room for others. If you already have one cat, consider bringing home a second one for added companionship.

Donate 

Caring for a cat or any other pet is a responsibility. If you do not have the time or space for a cat, consider donating to a shelter or rescue. Numerous rescue organizations will post needed items on their websites. Bleach, cat litter, food, and other cat-related products are generally top wanted items. Along with cat care products, rescues accept monetary donations.

 

Tips on Helping Your Dog Stay Calm During Fireworks

Fireworks are a normal part of the 4th of July celebration. Many communities host large scale firework displays. For firework goers, the loud noises are simply part of the night’s activities.  When the vibrant colors begin to light up the sky, does your dog get upset?

The booming noises are scary for some dogs (and cats). Dogs may bark, try to hide, or get sick over the continuous loud booms. Taking precautions before the start of the fireworks may help ease your pets’ nerves.

Tips on Keeping Your Dog Calm During Fireworks

Being prepared is the best way to help your dog through the firework celebrations. Check your community’s page on social media or website to learn about the time and dates of the fireworks in your area. Keep in mind, some communities host fireworks more than one night. Do not forget, your neighbors may host BBQs with added fireworks in the evening. Whistles and popping noises may be just as scary for your dog as the booming fireworks displays.

Consult Your Vet

If you are aware of the negative effects fireworks have on your dog, voice your concerns with your vet. Under some circumstances, your vet may prescribe a light sedative to help your dog get through the evening’s festivities. A sedative relaxes your dog. When prescribing medication, staying with your dog is essential.

Stay Home 

The 4th of July is a time for numerous activities and celebrations. When your pet gets upset over fireworks, staying home in a familiar environment may help. Plan to spend the night at home with your favorite furry companion.

  • Close any open windows.
  • Remember to secure doggy dog entrances
  • Lock doors to prevent running away.
  • Cuddle together on the sofa
  • Go to an area in your home where outdoor noises are muted.
  • Constantly reassure your dog that everything is good

Taking small precautions may ease your dog’s nerves.

Create a Safe Environment 

If you are away from home, keep your pet with you during the fireworks presentation. Being by your side reassures your dog that everything is fine. Offer your pet a special treat, bone, toy, or a blanket for additional comfort.

If you must leave your pet home alone, take steps to muffle the loud noises. For example turn on a radio or the television, leave a fan running. Familiar noises add comfort.  When putting your dog in the crate, add his or her favorite toy.

Go Outdoors Before the Fireworks Begin

Prior to the evening’s fireworks presentation, go outdoors. Go for an additional walk or spend extra time at the dog park. Exercising may reduce stress.

Be Sympathetic

Your dog may require extra attention on the 4th of July, be sympathetic. Fireworks are loud and scary for animals. Helping your dog get through the night should be your main priority.

 

 

 

 

 

 

June: Adopt A Cat Month

Did you know June is Adopt A Cat month? Warmer months generally mean more cats and kitties end up at local shelters or rescues. The influx of new kittens and cars quickly overwhelm many organizations. Adopting a cat or kitten may actually save a life.

Tips for Adopting A Cat or Kitten

Prior to getting a new pet, ask yourself, are you ready for the extra responsibility? Even though cats are generally independent creatures, being prepared is vital. Kittens need extra attention. If possible, adopt two to entertain each other. Remember, adopting an animal of any kind requires supplies and food.

  • Litter Box and Scoop: In the beginning, a smaller litter box may be necessary for your kitten to climb into safely. Full grown cats may require larger boxes to contain the litter. A scoop is a must for keeping your cat’s litter box clean. Failing to clean the litter box will result in your cat finding other places to go.
  • Litter: Cat litter choices may seem overwhelming. At first, trial and error may be part of your process for finding the best one for your new cat or kitten. Clumping cat litter is generally easier to scoop.
  • Food Dish and Water Bowl: Kittens may require smaller dishes. Ceramic or metal dishes tend to last longer than plastic ones. Plastic dishes may absorb odors. Self-watering bowls are ideal especially if you work long hours.
  • Food: Kittens require special food to help them grow. They need extra nutrients for their high-energy level. If you are uncertain on the type of food, research or ask your local veterinarian. When adopting your new furry friend from a rescue, ask questions about the type of food they use on a daily basis.
  • Treats: Kittens and cats love treats. Use them sparingly.
  • Collars/Harnesses/Leashes: When taking your kitten or cat outdoors, a collar or harness with a secure leash will help keep your furry companion safe.
  • Grooming Supplies: Longer haired kittens and cats may need help grooming. Daily brushing helps keep your cat’s fur tangle free.
  • Find a Vet: Finding a vet is necessary for your pet’s health. Research veterinarians in your area or consult with the rescue. Rescue organizations tend to work closely with local vets to spay and neuter incoming animals. They will be more than happy to direct you to the vet of their choice.

If You Are Unable to Adopt a Cat or Kitten

Perhaps, the timing is not right to adopt a cat or you are uncertain if you are ready for the responsibility. That’s okay, there are other ways to help during Adopt A Cat month.

  • Foster: Many rescues promote fostering to adopt programs. Fostering makes room for other animals to enter the rescue. Fostering provides hands-on learning about caring for cat or kitten without a long term commitment.
  • Volunteer: Rescue organization or shelters are always looking for volunteers. Keep in mind; volunteering is not just playing with the kittens. But do not let that keep you from helping out. Cleaning litter boxes is part of cat ownership.
  • Donate: Rescues run on donations. Vet bills, food, litter, and other supplies are costly. Even the smallest donation has the potential for life-saving impact.
  • Get Social: Rescues and shelters usually post adoptable kittens and cats on social media platforms. Sharing daily posts with your followers may result in animal adoption.

From bringing home a new kitten to sharing posts on social media, participating in Adopt A Cat month is easy.

5 Ways to Celebrate National Rescue Dog Day

Did you know May 20th is National Rescue Dog Day? Adopting a rescue or shelter dog may save a life. Millions of dogs (and cats) enter overflowing shelters each year. Every size, breed, color, and age is available to adopt. Rescuing one shelter dog may result in a lifetime of companionship.

5 Ways to Celebrate National Rescue Dog Day

Are you wondering how you can help a rescue dog?  Celebrate National Rescue Dog Day by doing one of the following options.

Adopt

Do you have room in your home for another dog? Check out the available dogs at your local shelter, rescue organization, or adoption event in your area. Do not be afraid to ask questions. The more you know about your potential new four-legged friend, the better chance of a long-lasting fit.

  • Do you have any background information about the dog?
  • Does the dog have any known medical conditions?
  • Do you know the approximate age of the dog?
  • Is the dog good with cats, other dogs or children?
  • Do you know the breed?

Each question will help determine if the dog is the right fit for your family or lifestyle.

Foster

If you are not ready to make a commitment to dog ownership, consider fostering one. Many rescue centers allow for short-term or weekend foster placement. The process helps get dogs into home situations for further training and socialization.

Volunteer

If you are unable to fit a rescue dog into your life or uncertain about the right dog for you, volunteer your time. Many rescue organizations need people to walk dogs, clean kennels, and other activities. Spending time with different dogs is a great way to find the perfect fit for you.

Donate

Rescue organization runs on donated funds. If you cannot adopt or volunteer, donate to your local rescue. Many organizations have a donation list of needed items including:

  • Dry dog food
  • Canned dog food
  • Chew toys
  • Dog treats
  • Dog beds
  • Bleach
  • Paper towels
  • Handy wipes

And, of course, every dog rescue accepts a monetary donation.

Spread the Word

Little things often yield big results. Use your social media to help rescue dogs. Find and follow a local rescue center’s page.  A simple and quick way to contribute is sharing a post from the rescue center of available dogs. The dog’s new owner may just be a click away.

Celebrate! Love Your Pet Day

Did you know, today, February 20th is Love Your Pet Day? Whether you have a dog, cat or other furry little critter, pets bring companionship, joy, and fun to your home. Dedicated pet owners always show love to their furry or feathered friends. Today just focuses on the love you have for your pet. Life should be about small celebrations.

How to Celebrate Love Your Pet Day?

Being a responsible pet owner, you already know the activities your dog (or cat) enjoys the most. Set some time aside to engage in your pet’s favorite pastime. If you are looking for new activity, consider the following ideas to celebrate Love Your Pet Day:

Time

Work, family, school, or other commitments keep you busy. Being home alone may leave your pet feeling lonely. Spending some extra quality time with your faithful companion is the perfect way to celebrate Love Your Pet Day.

  • Go to the local dog park or find a new one to explore
  • Go hiking on a new trail
  • Go for a car ride together to find a special treat
  • Snuggle on the sofa

New Toy

Pick up a new toy for your beloved pet. A new squeaky toy for your dog or cat nipped filled mouse for your feline friend will brighten your pet’s day.

Homemade Treats

Head over to Pinterest to search for homemade animal treats. Baking homemade dog or cat treats shows extra love for your pet on this special day. Most recipes require basic ingredients that you may already have on hand. The wide range of recipes available ensures the perfect fit for your pet.

Spa Treatment

Many dogs love pampering (cats not so much). Send your pooch to the local doggy spa for a fresh bath, nail trimming, and more.

Photo of the Occasion

A photo of the occasion is the best way to mark Love Your Pet Day.

  • Take a selfie
  • Set up your own photo shoot
  • Get a professional portrait

Need a Pet? Adopt

Bringing home a pet from a local rescue or animal shelter immediately shows love. Celebrating Love Your Pet Day with a new furry companion goes beyond recognizing the day, the action may actually save a life.

3 Benefits of Adopting a Senior Dog

Making the decision to adopt a dog (or cat) should be carefully considered. Pets are a big responsibility. Take your time and research. Finding the best fit for you and your family is essential.

When you head to your local shelter or rescue center, keep an open mind. Bring home a dog does not necessarily automatically mean a puppy. Older or senior dogs have many benefits. November is Adopt a Senior Pet Month. Embracing an older dog (or cat) into your home is a wonderful way to celebrate a month dedicated to senior pet adoption.

3 Benefits of Adopting an Older Dog

Thousands of animals end up in local shelters or rescue centers due to no fault of their own. Being in a shelter is a scary place for dogs and cats. When people come to adopt, puppies are generally at the top of the list. Unknowing to most new pet owners, older dogs provide many benefits.

1. Background Information

Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to learn the background and medical information on the senior dog. Older dogs end up in shelters for various reasons. When the senior dog comes into the shelter or a recuse center, the establishment will try to get as much background information as possible.

2. Slower Pace

Unlike puppies, senior dogs are less demanding. Keep in mind, an older dog still needs direction. But generally, an older dog already is leash trained, requires less exercise, understands basic commands, and house trained. If not, you can still teach a senior dog. When bringing any newly adopted pet into your home, the key is patience and consistency.

3. Saving a Life

Realistically, adopting a senior dog may save a life. Passing up on an older dog or cat may lead to the animal being euthanized. Euthanizing unadoptable dogs, senior dogs are generally among this group. Bringing home the older dog may be the perfect way to save a life.

When you begin your search for a new furry companion, consider adopting a senior dog at a shelter or rescue. Providing an older dog with a loving home is a rewarding experience.

6 Tips for Adopting a Shelter Dog

Did you know October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month? Millions of dogs (and cats) enter shelters every year. Rescuing a shelter dog is the perfect way to celebrate Adopt a Shelter Dog Month. Keep in mind, shelter dogs may need time to adjust to new living situations. Noisy shelters are a scary place for a dog. Moving to a new home adds to the dog’s anxiety. Consider the following tips to help you with a successful adoption process.

Tips for Successful Shelter Dog Adoption

Before you adopt a shelter dog or any other pets, think. Do you have enough time for your pet? Does your landlord allow animals in your building? Do you have enough money to cover your pet’s expenses? Each question will help you determine the type and size of pet to bring home.

1. Research

One of the best ways to begin the adoption process is research. Learning about different dog breeds will help you find the right dog for your home. Many shelter dogs are mixed breeds. If you have a specific breed in mind, learn about size, weight, temperament and other pertinent information.

2. Take Your Time

Prior to adopting your new shelter dog, prepare your dog’s living space and your entire home.

  • Keep cleaners or other chemicals in a safe place.
  • Place plants out of the dog’s reach.
  • If you plan on keeping your pet out of certain rooms in your house, install baby gates.

3. Dog Necessities

Purchasing the basic supplies will prepare you to bring your new pet home. Remember your new shelter dog’s necessities depend on the size. If you have an idea of your future dog’s size, you may start purchasing the basics.

  • Food and Water Dishes: From small bowls to large self-feeding dishes, you will need one for food and one for water.
  • Leash and Collar: A leash and collar are necessary for walking your dog. The collar should fit properly. A tight fitting collar may cause your dog to choke. A loose fitting one may result in your new dog slipping away from you. When you are not walking your dog on your own private property, doggy cleanup bags are a must.
  • Backyard Fencing: If you are able, fence in a specific area for your dog to play and go potty.
  • Dog Bed: In order to be comfortable, the dog bed needs to be size appropriate.
  • Crate or Kennels: Many dog owners use crates or kennels. Having a kennel set up and ready will ensure a proper routine from the start.
  • Toys: Dogs love to play. Having toys ready will help ease the transition process.

4. Ask Questions

After all the research and preparation, the time is right to find your perfect new four-legged companion. Do not be afraid to ask questions about the dog.

  • Is the dog good with other dogs, cats or children?
  • Do you know the history of the dog?
  • What is the dog’s current food?
  • What is the dog’s energy level?

Every answer will help determine if the dog is right for your household.

5. Bringing Your Pet Home

Your new dog will need time to adjust to unfamiliar surroundings. Allow your dog some time to sniff the house. A new home is intimidating. The adjustment will not happen overnight. Slowly introduce your new dog to others in the household.

6. Vet Appointment

Unfortunately, the shelter may not have a complete background history of your new dog. Taking your pet to the vet is a perfect way to set up a health regiment. Ask your vet about shots, preventive medicines for fleas and ticks, diet suggestions, dog training and any other concerns you may have about your addition. Your vet is a valuable resource.

Adopting a shelter dog is a commitment. However, finding a new fur baby to love and cherish is the best outcome.