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How to Keep Thick-Coated Dogs Cool During the Summer
How to Keep Your Cat Stimulated through Games
What to Do If you See a Scared Animal Running in the Street

How to Keep Thick-Coated Dogs Cool During the Summer
Summer is hot for people not to mention dogs. It can be even more uncomfortable for thick-coated dogs. However, there are things you can do to help keep your dog cool.

If you’re thinking of shaving your dog, hold on! It’s not necessarily the best idea.

According to the article, “Heat Wave Approaching! Should You Shave Your Pet?” at, “While you or I would hate to sport multiple layers in 100-degree weather, your pets’ fur coats are actually providing them with heat relief.” Actually, that coat is like insulation for your dog, and “keeps him from getting too cold in the winter, but also keeps him from overheating in the summer,” the article said.

If you shave that coat, it can bring on discomfort, overheating, and even sunburn or skin cancer.

Some vets may suggest shaving down a dog with a thick coat if the dog doesn’t do well in the heat. “Actually, any dog can suffer sunburn, so if you do shave your thick-coated dog, be sure to leave at least an inch of hair to protect your pet from the sun’s rays,” according to the article, “Should You Shave Your Pet for Summer?” at Fetch by WebMD.

Here are tips if you decide to shave your dog, according to the Fetch article:

• If you are inexperienced, see a professional groomer to avoid any accidents.
• When shaving your dog yourself, make sure the clippers are cool, so take breaks.
• Make sure to leave at least an inch of your dog’s hair for protection.
• Do not shave your dog too close to the skin.

Other tips to keep your thick-coated dog cool include making sure he has lots of cool water and shelter, ensure you brush his undercoat, and keep him cool and indoors.

How to Keep Your Cat Stimulated through Games
If you have a house cat, then you know that it is important to keep her physically and mentally active. While it’s safer to keep cats indoors, it can sometimes mean a bored cat who is not getting enough stimulation.

“So, we need to get our cats up and moving, and there’s no better way to coax out their natural instincts to stalk and chase prey than by engaging them with toys,” according to the article, “Playing With Your Cat: Toys and Games” at Fetch by WebMD.

Some toys that offer stimulation for cats include:

• Wand toys. Easily put together one at home using fabric and a stick that you can wave and circle in front of your cat.
• Ball toys. These can mimic mice, and your cats will be likely to chase. Easily scrunch up a paper ball at home or buy a ball.

Cats who lack stimulation can become destructive. You may see signs of a bored cat if they scratch and claw at things in your home, according to the article, “5 Brain Games You Can Play With Your Cat,” at The Purrington Post.

Brain games will not only help stimulate your cat but help the bond you have together. The Purrington Post recommends the following:

• Paw Pinata Play. It’s easy to create at home with a paper bag and cat treats. Make small cuts in the bag and fill with the treats. Hold the bag over your cat. The smell will entice your cat to bat the bag and release the treats.
• Treasure Hunt. Hide your cat’s food throughout your home to allow your cat’s hunting skills to find the food. It’s very stimulating for felines.

There’s so many options when it comes to stimulating games for cats and you’ll both be better for it.

What to Do If you See a Scared Animal Running in the Street
A feeling of helplessness can come over you if you spot a scared animal running in the street. What can you do to help and prevent the animal from getting hurt or even hit by a passing car?

First try to ensure you don’t cause an accident if you’re driving, so pull over. Next, try to catch the animal in a safe manner, according to the article, “How to help a stray pet,” at The Humane Society of the Unites States (HSUS).

The animal may be scared, injured, or sick, and there’s no telling how he will behave. You could accidentally scare the animal and he could take off into traffic, which you want to avoid. And, if the animal seems threatening, you want to stay safely away in your car.

If you feel you are able to try to capture the animal, “Create a barrier or use a carrier, leash, piece of cloth, or length of rope to keep the animal in the area,” the HSUS article said. Be very cautious to try not to get bitten or scratched.

You can try to lure the animal into your car with treats and speak calmly. “Turning a bit sideways can help you seem less intimidating to a scared dog, along with slow movement,” according to the article, “What to Do When You Find a Lost Dog” at Preventive Vet.

For an animal who is aggressive or if you are unable to capture him, call the police or local animal control for help.

If you do capture the animal, check for a collar and tags and get to a local vet to check for a microchip to find if there’s an owner. You can also contact your local animal shelters as well as spread the word with “Found Dog” flyers.

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What Is the Loose Skin Around Your Cat’s Stomach?
Outdoor Safety Tips for Pets During Hot Temperatures
Is Your Pet in Your Will?

What Is the Loose Skin Around Your Cat’s Stomach?

Some people might think they have a fat cat because of the pouch of loose skin found around their cat’s stomach in front of the back legs. It has also been mistaken for excess skin after a spay or neuter. But it can be something else, something you might not know about at all.

Don’t worry because this extra skin is usually pretty normal in cats. “The technical term for this flap of skin and fat, which often feels like a half-full water balloon, is the ‘primordial pouch,’ and you can also observe this feature on some big cats like lions and tigers,” according to the article, “Why do many cats have a saggy belly?” at

It’s that pouch that has protected cats during fights with predators. Not to mention, a cat’s full body is protected with excess skin, “which helps them squirm out of the grasp of other predators,” according to the article.

The pouch is seen in both female and male cats and varies in size from cat to cat. It serves other purposes as well, according to the article, “The Primordial Pouch” at Valley Cats Inc. “The Primordial Pouch, or belly flap, allows the cat to stretch and move easily when running, jumping, or twisting around,” the article said, adding that wild cats have pouches for the same reason as well.

Another interesting bit of information from biologists regarding wild cats is they believe “these pouches allow extra room to expand when gorging on their kills, since they do not always eat daily,” The Primordial Pouch article said.

No matter what, it’s very important to ensure your domestic cat does not overeat and then store food in the pouch. An obese cat is an unhealthy cat.

Outdoor Safety Tips for Pets During Hot Temperatures
When temperatures rise in Arizona and other hot spots around the country, it can be challenging to keep your pets safe, but it’s imperative that you do. Remember, it’s important for humans and pets to be extra careful when it’s hot outside.

If you have a dog who needs to go for walks, keep in mind the time of day. According to the article, “Keep pets safe in the heat” at The Humane Society of the United States, “On very hot days, limit exercise to early morning or evening hours, and be especially careful with pets with white-colored ears, who are more susceptible to skin cancer, and short-nosed pets, who typically have difficulty breathing.” And, walk on grass because pavement can burn paws. Also, don’t forget to bring drinking water along for you and your pet.

Heatstroke can be very dangerous to your pet. Learn the signs so you are prepared in case it happens, including heavy panting, rapid heartbeat, glazed eyes, difficulty breathing, dizziness and more, according to the article. Heatstroke can be even worse for senior or very young animals as well as those who are overweight or ones with heart or respiratory disease.

With the warmer weather comes parasites in some areas. It’s important to use preventives against heartworm, fleas, and ticks, according to the article, “Warm weather pet safety,” at American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).

The AVMA article also advised to speak with your vet about sunscreen or a haircut for your pet, and whether to start an exercise program in warmer weather, especially for pets who are overweight and those breeds with short noses.

If you are exercising outdoors, always make sure to take lots of breaks and drink enough water. Keep your pet and yourself healthy, and be careful out there!

Is Your Pet in Your Will?
While wills in general are not the easiest of topics, oftentimes when a person dies, a pet is left with no one to take over their care.

Pets’ lives are naturally shorter than ours, but sometimes things happen and people die, leaving pets alone. There also are times when family members don’t want to or cannot take over a pet’s care after a person dies. When there’s no plan, many pets are left at shelters through no fault of their own.

Given that, it’s very responsible to make provisions for your pets for after you die.

Here are things to take into consideration when putting your pet in your will, according to the article, “Providing for Your Pet’s Future Without You” courtesy of The Humane Society of the United States and posted at

• Discuss your will and prepare a document that arranges for your pet’s care, ownership, and money left for the pet’s care after you die.
• Choose a permanent caregiver for your pet. If you have more than one pet, decide if you need more than one person. Discuss with your caregiver to ensure they agree to take on the responsibility of your pet’s care. Also choose alternates in case the first-named caregiver backs out. “Remember, the new owner will have full discretion over the animal’s care—including veterinary treatment and euthanasia—so make sure you choose a person you trust implicitly and who will do what is in the best interests of your pet,” the article said.

You may want to set up a pet trust. According to the article, “Including Animals in Your Will,” at Animal Legal Defense Fund, trusts are more secure when providing for an animal. “Pet trusts provide an extra layer of security and additional protections.”

Make sure to speak with your attorney.

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Gingr Online Reservation Features
How to Care for Your Pet’s Nails
The Good and Bad of Retractable Leashes?
Know Which Foods are Toxic for Your Pets

Second Home Pet Resort now offers the ability to book your pet’s grooming or boarding directly online!

Just visit our website at

If one of our staff members created the profile for you, simply choose the option to sign in with your email address or phone number. You will be prompted to create your own unique password for future logins.

If you do not yet have a customer profile with Gingr (if you have yet to use our services), create one from this page by choosing the “not a current customer link.”

The customer portal is very user friendly and easy to navigate. If you have any questions, please call us at 602-997-6600.

Please note: If you request a grooming appointment or boarding reservation, it is NOT confirmed until you receive an email from us.


What can you do on the customer portal?

  • View and edit your contact info
  • Upload files such as immunization records and photos of your pets.
  • Add or remove credit cards on file.
  • View and edit pet info, as well as add new pets.
  • View past and future reservations, as well as cancel reservations, or confirm reservations after you’ve asked for confirmation.
  • Make reservation requests.
  • View a receipt by clicking on the “View” button next to any completed reservation, as well as any report card that was created for that reservation.
  • Purchase store credit.
  • Apply pre-payment to upcoming reservation estimates.
  • Pay off balances from open invoices.
  • Purchase Doggie Day Care Punch Cards.

How to Care for Your Pet’s Nails
Trimming your pet’s nails can be challenging. Some dogs and cats have no issues but some don’t like it at all. However, nail care is very important for them.

For dogs: Some do not need their nails trimmed. According to the article, “How to Clip Dog Nails” at, “Many will naturally wear the nails down, or the dried ends of the nails will simply flake away without you even knowing.” For certain breeds such as the Dachshund, the nails should be kept short. You’ll need to trim your dog’s nails “anywhere from once per week to once per month” depending on the size and breed of the dog, the article said.

Many people who are afraid to cut their dog’s nails are afraid of cutting the nail too close to the quick: “The pink area of the nail is the live part and has blood vessels throughout,” the article said. However, sometimes it’s difficult to see the quick especially with black hair and nails so check at the end of the nails. “The dead area usually is whitish and as you cut deeper into the end of the nail you will begin to see a dark area.,” the article said. “This dark area is where the live part starts.”

For cats: The pink part of the nail is the quick so don’t cut it. “Snip only the white part of the claw,” according to the article, “Cat Grooming Tips,” at the “It’s better to be cautious and cut less of the nail rather than risk cutting this area.”

Keep styptic powder on hand, just in case you do cut too close to the quick on your dog or the claw on your cat. If you have any issues, speak with your vet or your groomer.

The Good and Bad of Retractable Leashes?
While out walking your dog, you may see other people using a retractable leash with their canine. Or you may use one yourself. There’s been a lot of controversy about these leashes concerning possible dangers. It’s best to learn about them before making your own decision.

There are some pros and cons, according to the article, “Why Retractable Leashes Are Dangerous” at


• Retractable leashes allow dogs to move up to 20 and even 30 feet from their human. If a dog is trained well, this can be very positive.
• If done correctly, “these inventions give their dogs wonderful freedom without danger.”


• For just about all the cons of the retractable leash, it is usually human error that causes the problems.
• It’s extremely difficult to control a dog who is 30 feet away.
• “There is a warning right on the handle to take caution with your fingers,” the Petful article said. “Fingers have been amputated when entangled in these leashes. Humans have suffered serious rope burns and deep gashes as well.”
• Trauma can involve the leashes wrapping around dogs’ legs. “If you try to retract the leash, the leash naturally becomes tighter around the victim,” the Petful article said.

The retractable leash is not a good idea for certain pets or owners. According to the article, “Retractable Leashes: Are They Dangerous?” at, “Veterinarians say they see a lot of injuries related to retractable leashes.”

Injuries can include neck and dog fight injuries (for dogs who are too far away from their owner). Additionally, humans can become injured after being wrapped up in a retractable leash.

Many issues arise out of humans not truly knowing how to use the retractable leash. For any issues you may have, consider speaking with your vet and a trainer.

Know Which Foods are Toxic for Your Pets

There are so many food items that can harm your pet. While we often think about how to keep pets away from foods that can be toxic to them during holidays, there are many toxic foods in our home every day. So, it’s important to be aware.

Did you know that something called xylitol is dangerous to your dog? Xylitol is a sweetener that’s been used in everything from gum, toothpaste, and baked goods to candy and diet foods. “It can cause your dog’s blood sugar to drop and can also cause liver failure,” according to the article, “Slideshow: Foods Your Dog Should Never Eat,” at “Early symptoms include vomiting, lethargy, and coordination problems.”

A list of other toxic foods your pets should avoid include:
• Avocado
• Alcohol
• Garlic and onions
• Caffeine drinks such as coffee and tea
• Raisins and grapes
• Milk and dairy products
• Macadamia nuts
• Chocolate
• Persimmons, peaches, and plums
• Raw meat, fish and eggs

From household items that are poisonous to pets and the food you feed yourself that pets should not eat to household products that are poisonous, there are so many very poisonous items that can pose great danger to pets, according to the

“Macadamia nuts can cause weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors and hyperthermia in dogs,” according to the article, “People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets” at And signs typically appear within 12 hours. Then there’s raw or undercooked meat, eggs, and bones. “Raw meat and raw eggs can contain bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli that can be harmful to pets and humans,” the article said.

If you fear your pet has gotten into anything toxic, call your veterinarian immediately. You can also call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435. (They may charge a consultation fee.)