Posted by & filed under Uncategorized .

Dog Parks and What You Need to Know Before You Go
How to Choose the Right Cat Litter for Your Furry Feline
How to Socialize Your Cat

Dog Parks and What You Need to Know Before You Go
Parks are a great place for people and dogs to have fun. Then there are dog parks – a place just for dogs to romp and get together with other canines. What should you know before you bring your furry friend?

Most important is that dog parks have rules that should be followed so that pets and pet parents can enjoy them. The rules are there “to ensure good manners and help promote safety,” according to the article, “Play It Safe and Be Polite: Dog Park Rules You Should Never Break” at “For this reason, it’s important to know the do’s and don’ts of the dog park and to follow them every time you and your pooch visit the park.”

Some of the do’s include:

• Ensure your dog is vaccinated and protected against parasites.
• Keep your dog leashed until he’s in the off-leash section.
• Remove his leash before joining other dogs in play.
• Have your dog enter the dog park calmly.
• Keep small dogs and large dogs separate.
• Pick up your dog’s poop.

Some don’ts include:

• Leave young children, babies, and toddlers at home.
• Do not get distracted or leave your dog unattended.
• Leave very hyper dogs at home.
• Prevent your dog from mounting other dogs.
• Do not get in the middle of a dog fight.

According to the article, “Dog Park Etiquette: 7 Rules for a Well-Behaved Pet” at, keep home dogs who are not spayed or neutered. Also, keep puppies at home. They are more difficult to control. “People find them cute, but older dogs often think they’re a pain,” the article said. “Plus, those who haven’t yet had all their shots can be exposed to diseases.”

If you stick to the dog park rules, chances are you and your pooch can have a good time.

How to Choose the Right Cat Litter for Your Furry Feline
Cat litter is an important part of a cat’s life. But are all litters created equal, and how do you know if you are choosing the right one? From clay littler to scooping/clumping litter, there are many types from which to choose.

According to the article, “Preventing litter box problems” at, “Most cats prefer fine-grained litters, presumably because they have a softer feel.” But there are newer and scoopable litters that clump and have finer grains. Plus, they have less odor.

When you find a litter that your cat likes, the article suggests staying with it. “Switching litters constantly could result in your cat not using the litter box,” the HumaneSociety article said.

Cats who were previously outdoors 24/7 prefer dirt and could get into house plants. You can keep them out of plants with rocks placed on the soil. You also can mix soil into their litter. “A cat who rejects all types of commercial litters may be quite happy with sand,” the article said.

There are some things to consider when choosing a litter, according to the article, “How to Choose a Cat Litter Box and Kitty Litter,” at PetCareRx. These include:

• Choose unscented, absorbent, and dust-free litter. Dust can cause respiratory issues.
• Stay away from scented litters that mask odors. The scent is often a huge turnoff for cats who may choose to do their business somewhere else in the home. “To keep your litter box smelling fresh without scented litter, simply clean it more often,” the PetCareRx article said.
• Clumping or non-clumping? Clumping is easier to remove waste but it comes down to preference in the end.

When you find the right combination of litter and box that works for your cat, stick with it and everyone should be happy.

How to Socialize Your Cat
There are classes to help socialize your dog, but what about your cat? Socializing felines is just as important.

Building trust in cats and getting them used to other people and other animals at home is necessary. “A cat who is not socialized can be timid, distrustful, scared or aggressive,” according to the article, “How to Socialize Your Cat” at

With socialized cats, things will be better all around. Your cat most likely will be more “loving, trusting, affectionate and well-behaved,” the article said. Socialization is also essential when there are small children at home to help prevent being bitten or scratched.

Socializing your cat is not as difficult or as time-consuming as you may think. Some tips include:

• Have your cat adjust to being handled and held in your arms. Start slowly if she is fearful.
• Pet and stroke her slowly.
• Provide treats after a “touching” session, according to Catster.
• Add sessions including handling of feet and toes.
• Speak calmly in a soothing voice.
• Play with your cat by scheduling times each day and use her favorite toy.
• Never reinforce bad behaviors.
• Ensure your cat trusts you before introducing her to strangers, and do not force interaction.

According to the article, “How to Socialize Your Cat” at ASPCA Pet Health Insurance, the following tips can help when socializing your cat:

• Ensure she is up-to-date on vaccinations before interacting with other animals.
• Cats do great when socialized in pairs, so think about adopting two!
• Bring toys that are rod-style “that allow for some distance between your kitty and you,” the ASPCA Pet Health Insurance article said.
• Work on socialization in small areas, such as a bathroom.
• Take it slow and be patient.

Before you know it your cat will be the social “butterfly” at home.

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized .

The Heat is on: What to Do If You See a Pet in a Hot Car
Be Careful When Walking Your Dog During the Hot Summer Months
Ensure Your Pets Are Safe Around the Pool

The Heat is on: What to Do If You See a Pet in a Hot Car
When temperatures rise, pets left in hot cars is a constant issue. It’s important to know what to do if you witness an incident.

Oftentimes, a person will leave their pet in a car believing they’ll be gone for minutes. That can turn into much longer putting the pet in grave danger.

There are days that don’t seem very hot, but the inside of a car heats up fast and becomes a literal deathtrap for pets and humans, too!

According to the article, “Pets in Vehicles,” at American Veterinary Medical Association (,“The temperature inside your vehicle can rise almost 20º F in just 10 minutes. In 20 minutes, it can rise almost 30º F…and the longer you wait, the higher it goes. At 60 minutes, the temperature in your vehicle can be more than 40 degrees higher than the outside temperature. Even on a 70-degree day, that’s 110 degrees inside your vehicle!”

If you see a pet left in a hot car, here are things to do, according to the article, “What to do if you see a pet in a parked car,” at (HSUS):

• Write down the vehicle’s make, model and license plate.
• If you’re near a business, ask the manager to help find the owner. “Many people are unaware of the danger of leaving pets in hot cars and will quickly return to their vehicle once they are alerted to the situation,” the article said.
• If you can’t find the owner, call the non-emergency number for your local police or animal control.

“In several states good Samaritans can legally remove animals from cars under certain circumstances, so be sure to know the laws in your area and follow any steps required,” the HSUS article said.

Click this link to find out about the laws in your state.

Be Careful When Walking Your Dog During the Hot Summer Months
Some of the best times are had during the summer. When it gets very hot, it’s important to be careful. That also goes for your dog, especially when you take him for a walk.

Asphalt and pavement can become so hot during the summer making it dangerous to walk your dog. However, there are things you can do to ensure your dog can get out on a walk and avoid heat-related issues.

Make sure your dog doesn’t get overheated. Know the symptoms, “which include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse,” according to the article, “Hot Weather Safety Tips” at “Symptoms can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.”

Be aware of the time of day when walking your dog. “When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt,” the article said. You dog’s body can heat up very fast while his paw pads can burn.

Certain dogs are more susceptible to the heat, according to the article, “7 Summer Dog Walking Tips You Should Keep in Mind” at They include older dogs, dogs with short snouts, and dogs who may have an illness.

The petMD article offers the following tips:

• Walk your dog before 9 a.m. and after 6 p.m., avoiding peak hours.
• Find that shady part of the street.
• Always bring water for you and your dog.
• Be careful of hot pavement: The sidewalk is better than the street, but grass is even better.
• Don’t go too fast.
• Enjoy a time-out in a shady spot.

When you’re ready to get moving again, get on home, get some water, and enjoy a movie and the A/C with your best friend.

Ensure Your Pets Are Safe Around the Pool
The heat’s on and that often means everyone into the pool! If you have a dog (or cat), it’s important that they are safe around the pool to prevent accidents.

It’s a myth that all dogs know how to swim, and you won’t know until your dog is introduced to the water. Find a quiet spot and teach her the basics, according to the article, “Dogs and Water Safety” at Here’s some tips:

• Work with your dog in a quiet, shallow spot.
• Keep your dog on a leash while she learns.
• Be in the water with your dog.
• Don’t force your dog to go in.
• When your dog paddles using her front legs, lift the hind legs, showing her how to float, the WebMD article said.

Ensure there is a fence around your pool, keep a sturdy cover over the pool when it’s not in use, teach your dog how to get in and out of the pool, and ensure the temperature isn’t too cold before getting in with your dog.

Other important safety measures for your pet include a life jacket that’s just for your dog, according to the article, “Create a Safe Swimming Pool for Your Pup” at

Whether your pool is salt water or chlorine, be sure your dog does not ingest too much water, which can be done by continually retrieving a ball. According to the Vetstreet article, chlorine can cause water intoxication in your dog while saltwater pools can bring about hypernatremia, which is salt intoxication.

“Rinsing off after a dip in either type of pool is recommended, but you probably don’t need to give your dog a full bath with shampoo every time he finishes swimming,” the Vetstreet article said.

Keep your pet safe around the pool, and you’ll both have fun.

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized .

Warmer Weather, Thicker Coats: How to Groom Your Pets
Why Some Dogs are Leash Reactive and What to Do?
Introducing Baby to Your Fur Baby: The Dos and Don’ts

Warmer Weather, Thicker Coats: How to Groom Your Pets
Some people are not sure of how to groom their thick-coated pets in warmer weather. There are many things to take into consideration, including ensuring that your pet is comfortable because the heat is on its way.

Don’t Shave!

Some pet parents resort to shaving their dog or cat during the hotter months, but hold on!

“Our pets’ coats have several layers that are essential to their comfort in the heat,” according to the article, “Heat Wave Approaching! Should You Shave Your Pet?” at “Robbing your dog or cat of this natural cooling system can lead to discomfort, overheating and other serious dangers like sunburn or skin cancer.”

Stick to a shorter “summer cut” or let them shed naturally. Also remember to provide shade and water when your pet is outside with you.

“Extreme heat can pose a real threat to cats and dogs, just as it can to humans,” according to the article, “Grooming Tips for Warm Weather” at “Cats and dogs simply cannot tolerate extreme temperatures. As a responsible pet owner, it’s up to you to make sure your pet is safe during warm weather conditions.”

Ensure your pet is groomed properly when it’s warmer. The PetAssure article advises to keep your dog’s coat free of mats and dirt. Other tips include:

• Regular brushing to remove undercoat
• Frequently brush to prevent matted fur
• Clip long hair on dogs and cats
• Don’t cut hair too short; pets can get sunburn plus you don’t want to damage the coat for the winter
• Trim hair around paws and hindquarters
• Check your pet’s coat for insects
• Bathe your pet especially if he likes to play in dirt

Groom accordingly for the hotter weather, but keep it up all year long as well. Your pets will thank you.

Why Some Dogs are Leash Reactive and What to Do?
It can be very frustrating and sometimes a little scary if you have a leash-reactive dog.

According to the article, “These Dog Training Tips Can Help Your Pup Overcome Leash Reactivity,” at, “Leash-reactive dogs are triggered by stimuli in the environment, responding with over-the-top behaviors that increase stress levels for the pet parent, the dog and everyone within barking distance.”

You may think that a leashed dog who barks, growls or lunges wants to start something with the “trigger.” However, “many dogs exhibit those types of reactions in an effort to increase their distance from the triggering stimulus,” the article said.

What may seem aggressive could be anxiety or fear – it’s defensive.

Causes of leash reactivity can include:

• No socialization as a puppy
• Bad experiences on a walk

Gentle training methods can help. The purpose is “changing your dog’s perception of the stressor.”

• Use high-value treats and a “marker” (clicker or verbal word).
• Determine your dog’s “buffer zone” and don’t get too close to the trigger.
• When your dog sees the trigger, mark that moment with a click or the verbal word then give the treat.
• Continue by marking and rewarding until trigger can’t be seen.

Your dog should start to realize the “trigger” means something good will occur. If all goes well, you can start decreasing “the distance between your dog and the trigger during walks, always making sure that your dog is relaxed and still able to eat treats as you get closer,” the article said.

“In an emergency, if your dog becomes overwhelmingly worked up at the sight of an approaching dog, you can distract him by tossing treats on the ground for him to pick up until the other dog is past,” according to the article, “Help! My Dog Lunges at Other Dogs,” at

Introducing Baby to Your Fur Baby: The Dos and Don’ts
If you’re getting ready to bring home a newborn baby, be sure you do the right things if you have existing fur babies at home.

Start preparing your family pet months in advance for the new arrival.

For dogs

If your dog hasn’t been around children, she may find things upsetting. Her schedule will change as will yours. Prepare and teach her skills to interact with baby and help adjust to the new changes, according to the article, “Dogs and Babies” at

“Teaching your dog some basic obedience skills will help you manage her behavior when the baby comes,” the article said.

The article offers some tips, including:

• Four months before baby, slowly introduce your dog to new sights, sounds, smells of the baby, and associate with rewards.
• One to two months before baby arrives, start making the changes that will affect your dog’s routine.
• Be calm during the introduction. Speak to your dog calmly and in a positive manner.
• “Never force your dog to interact with your baby,” the article said.
• Seek professional advice if you see any aggressive behavior.

For cats

There are stories that cats and babies don’t mix, but they are mainly tales. However, toxoplasmosis is real, so while you are pregnant, make sure your cat is kept indoors at all times.

Prepare your cat for the newborn throughout your pregnancy, according to the article, “Prepare Your Cat for Your New Baby,” at

• Play tapes of baby noises.
• Set up nursery furniture early but set limits to where your cat can go.
• Make surfaces unwelcoming using double-sided adhesive tape.
• Place a piece of the baby’s blanket or clothing in a quiet area for your cat to investigate.

Never leave your infant alone with any companion animal. Prepare ahead for a positive transition.