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Bring Home the Holiday Gifts Your Pets Will Love
What You Should Know if You’re Getting a New Puppy for the Holidays
Be the Best Pet Parent You Can Be: Tips to Help

Bring Home the Holiday Gifts Your Pets Will Love
Who doesn’t love buying the cutest cat toy or fashionable dog sweater? It elevates shopping to another level.

If you have dogs, you have a variety of great gifts from which to choose. The article, “Top Ten Holiday Gifts for Dogs,” at petMD, offers up some great ideas:

• Puzzle bowl. Mealtime can be fun for your dog and stimulating, too! Dog food is hidden in compartments and he has to figure out how to get the food.
• Reflective gear. Your dog probably won’t care, but you will because keeping him safe is a priority. Reflective gear is great for evening walks.
• Dog bed. Give the give of comfort with a new bed. “Sure most dogs can fall asleep anywhere, but that doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate a good bed,” the article said.
• Plush antlers. Your dog will likely hate you for them, but it’s good to be like Rudolph, even if just for a cute holiday photo

Be your cat’s favorite person when you load up on holiday gifts she will love. According to the article, “Top Ten Holiday Gifts for Cats,” at petMD, you have a lot of great choices:

• Scratching post. “Your cat gets a fun new toy, and you get to keep your furniture intact,” the article said.
• Mouse in the house. Toy mice are fun for cats. Fill them with catnip and your cat will love it even more.
• Litter box. According to the article, a new litter box is like “a renovated bathroom” for your cat.
• Roomba. Your cat will love it, and you’ll love your cat as he helps to clean your floor. It’s a win-win.

There’s so many great gifts for your pets. Your dog or cat will love them or put up with them while providing you with a great photo op.

What You Should Know if You’re Getting a New Puppy for the Holidays

Puppies are adorable, and many people want to bring one home for the holidays. However, there are many things to consider. Is the puppy a gift? Is the puppy for a young child? Who will care for and train the puppy?

According to the article, “Position Statement on Pets as Gifts,” at the, pets should be given as gifts, “only to people who have expressed a sustained interested in owning one, and the ability to care for it responsibly.” Additionally, the ASPCA recommends that animals are not obtained from unknown sources but instead from places such as shelters and rescue organizations.

In “Pets as Presents: A Good Idea?” at, the article refers to Stephen Zawistowski, senior vice president at the ASPCA, who says that pets can be a good idea as a family gift.

However, according to the article, it is important to consider the following:

• Age. “Different pets are appropriate for different ages,” the article said. A young child is not able to care for a kitten or puppy.
• Although your child may love dogs, she may not want one at home.
• Cost. Many people don’t realize the expense of having a family pet. After an initial adoption fee, there are vet bills and more.
• Commitment. When you bring home a puppy, it’s for life. “If your child is a teen, remember that the animal will be with you when your son or daughter heads off to college,” the article said.

When you do make the decision after thinking it through, going to a shelter is a great idea. “They’re in the business to help animals have good homes, not to make money,” Zawistowski said in the article. “You can turn this whole experience into an extraordinary experience for the kids.” The kids will have a forever friend.

Be the Best Pet Parent You Can Be: Tips to Help

The unconditional love your pet has for you is priceless. You love him back just the same. While you try to do right by your beloved furry family member, there’s never too much information to learn how to be the best pet parent you can be.

According to the article “How to Be the Best Pet Parent in Town,” in the Sept. 4, 2017 issue of People magazine, contributor Dr. Evan Antin, a veterinarian at Conejo Valley Veterinary Hospital in Thousand Oaks, Calif., offers some important advice:

1. If you want to dine with your dog on a restaurant patio, ensure your dog is OK with the crowds.
2. Keep your pet’s vaccinations up to date and on schedule.
3. If your dog gets into marijuana and/or chocolate, Dr. Antin advises to get to your vet ASAP, according to the article.
4. According to the article, Dr. Antin said, “there are parasites and bacterial species that can live in stool,” putting people and pets in danger if they come in contact.

There are even more things you can do for your pet to make you “top dog” in his eyes. The article “10 Simple Things You Can Do to Be a Great Pet Parent,” at offers these important tips:

• Ensure your pets are comfortable in their home environment as they will spend most of their time there. Keep plenty of water available, access to potty areas, a fresh litter box and a warm bed.
• Safety first! Make sure there is nothing hazardous that your pet can get into, including household cleaners, chocolate, electrical wires and yarn.
• Your pet should wear ID tags and be microchipped.

It is not difficult to be a great parent, but there is always more you can do to be better.

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