My Good Dogs and Their Kid

Posted by on Aug 30, 2012 in Animal Rescue, Lifestyle, Paws for Thought, Safety, Slider | 0 comments

My Good Dogs and Their Kid

I believe at heart, all dogs are good dogs.  Or, at least strive to be good dogs.  There are many dog breeds in the world today and my two fur kids are definitely couture.  They are a melting pot of mixed breeds which make them all the more special to me. Abe is most likely a Labrador Retriever mix and Chico is some combination of Chihuahua and Corgi perhaps.  I did purchase a DNA test (Wisdom Panel) for each of them and will be swabbing their cheeks soon!  Most importantly, they are both dog rescue success stories! Prior to adopting Abe, over eight years ago, my husband and I knew that dog adoption was for us.   Chico, on the other hand, well, he sort of fell into our lap about a year and a half ago… and stayed. Sixteen months ago, we also added another member to our family.  A two legger named Sebastian.  So, I am surrounded by boys and I love it.  They are hilarious and warm my heart with all of their canine and human antics.  Most importantly though, they all love one another.  Sebastian has his face washed by Abe and Chico daily and they thoroughly enjoy flanking his highchair at meal time. Of course, we are extra careful with Abe and Chico.  We ensure that Sebastian doesn’t antagonize them and know when they have had enough baby time.  If you have a new baby on the way, here are a few tips to create a safe environment: And, if you would like a peak into our life with baby and dogs visit: For now, here is a picture of all my boys…after they opened a box containing a Master Moves Mickey!  ...

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Furries and Fireworks

Posted by on Jul 2, 2012 in Paws for Thought, Products, Safety | 0 comments

Grills are fired up, families celebrate and fireworks are displayed on the Fourth of July.  And our pets?  Well, the Fourth of July is the number one day of the year for pets to be lost and end up in shelters.  In fact, some shelters will host pet adoptions on the Fourth of July to make room for all of the lost pets they will receive on July fifth. Here are five tips to help pet parents keep their furry family members safe this holiday. 1.  Keep Pets Cool and Inside– While you are enjoying the holiday festivities, make sure your pets are indoors, cool and safe.  The onset of hyperthermia can happen quickly and put your pet in danger.  This holiday is definitely not the day to have your pets roaming off leash in your yard or neighborhood.  Or worse yet, tethered outside in the heat.  To keep them busy, give them their favorite long lasting treat or toy and have fresh water.  2.  Fireworks Frenzy– Some pets are anxious and nervous at the sound of fireworks.  While many pets will burrow in their bed, others will bolt out of an open front door.  A few products on the market can help ease your pet’s fear such as the, Thundershirt, a calming jacket for your pet, and Rescue Remedy, an all natural calming solution. Be safe, if your pet is a runner, create a quiet room in your home with all of his favorites and keep the door closed. 3.  Pet I.D.’s, a Must Have– In the event your pet does leave your home, increase their chances of a safe return with their pet i.d. attached to their collar.  Make sure contact information is up to date.  If you want to take an extra precaution invest in a pet GPS tracking system so you can monitor your pet’s whereabouts on your smart phone. 4.  Avoid Fatty Foods and Decorations– Although we love roasted meats, creamy salads and chocolate filled desserts, your pet’s stomach may not thank you.  As we all know, some foods are toxic to our pets and overly rich foods can be the cause of pancreatitis.  The same can be true of Fourth of July decor.  If consumed, intestinal disturbance or blockage is a possibility.  Avoid the vet this holiday by keeping your pet on their paw lickin’ good kibble and decorations out of reach. 5.  Emergency Numbers– Have your vet, the local emergency vet and animal poison control’s number at the ready. Best place would be to program them in your cell phone.  In case there is a pet emergency, you know who to call and where the numbers are located.  The ASPCA National Animal Poison Control Center hotline number is 1-888-4ANI-HELP or 1-888-426-4435 ($65.00 per case). The charge is billed to caller’s credit card. Happy Fourth of July! Wags,...

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Safe Pet Travel

Posted by on Jun 21, 2012 in Car and Water, Health & Wellness, Safety, Travel, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Safe Pet Travel Summer is here and many pet parents are planning vacations which include their four legged family member.  We have already loaded the car with our dogs, Abe andChico, and taken them to the beach.  It was a wild ride I promise you, complete with baby, dogs, baby gear, dog gear and one father-in-law.  We made it safely though. Seventy three million UShouseholds own a pet.  And according to 82% of pets travel with their owners.  General safety for all travel includes:   1) pet id tag or tracking device, (we love TAGG)  2)  plan ahead- know the pet laws of the hotel and city you are traveling to and 3)  have your pet up to date on vaccines and ensure overall health. Car Travel Safety:  Auto harnesses and/or travel crates and water bowls are must haves.  Did you know that a 60lb dog would become an over 2500lb projectile object in a 35mph car accident?  Yikes!  This can never be said enough:  Never leave pet in a car unattended.   Auto temperatures can reach 120 degrees!!  We love Kurgo travel products! Air Travel Safety: Call your airline to find out the rules and regulations of pet travel.  Crate size for in cabin travel will differ by airline, type of plane and sometimes even your seat on that plane.  Airlines such as US Airways, Airtran, JenBlue and Southwest do not allow pets to ride in cargo and those that do (United and Delta) have restrictions on when and if short nosed breeds can travel.  Please click on the links and learn each airline’s pet policy. Make a reservation!  All pet air travel requires a reservation.  Fees do apply and range from $75-$125 each way. More air travel tips: Ö        Get your pet used to their travel crate prior to your trip.  Ö        Exercise prior to arriving at the airport to lessen excitable behavior. Ö        Make sure your pet is healthy and can handle a flight. Ö        If traveling in the cabin pack snacks, favorite toy and ensure comfort of your pet.  Ö        Airports will have a pet potty area to use prior to a flight, in between legs and after flight. Boat travel: Some dogs are made for the water and others….well let’s just say they are water challenged.  Use of a dog life jacket and/or boat ramp will help an anxious dog be safe in the water. Be safe this summer!  Enjoy your pets!  ...

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Chesty the Bulldog and His Life Jacket

Posted by on Jun 12, 2012 in Excercise, Health & Wellness, Lifestyle, Paws for Thought, Products, Safety, Uncategorized | 0 comments

I was visiting my family this past weekend on Anna Maria Island and was honored to meet a new relative…Chesty, an 85lb English Bulldog.  He belongs to my cousin Mike and his girlfriend Summer and is named after Lieutenant General Lewis Burwell “Chesty” Puller an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps. Although Anna Maria does not offer dog beaches, there are several rental homes and apartments that are pet friendly.  Thus, Chesty, was enjoying a week’s vacation…complete with an easy access salt water pool, cool tile floors and three bedrooms from which to choose.  Needless to say, it was hot this weekend.  Certainly too hot for a bulldog to be outside for very long.  But Chesty was determined.  True to his breed, he wanted to be with us all of the time and was snorting and slobbering his way through the day.   That included circling and inevitably being submerged in the pool. There is no doubt he would have sunk like a rock if we weren’t watching.  Luckily, my cousin, Mike, packed his doggy life jacket which enabled Chesty to zip back and forth across the pool…like a true fish out of water.  Life jackets are so important for those dogs not used to water or those being introduced to it for the first time.  For chest heavy breeds like English Bulldogs, life jackets are a must have.  Their bodies simply aren’t made for the water. My recommendation is to have one of these handy if you plan to take your fur kid on a boat or have him around a pool.  Especially if he is top heavy,  terrified of the water, or just so enamored that he could go overboard at any time.  Water + scared/nervous dogs never make a good match. Be safe like Chesty this...

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Crypton to the rescue!

Posted by on Oct 7, 2011 in Environment, Hips and Joints, Products, Uncategorized | 0 comments

As most of you know, I have two seven year old boys at home.  Abe, my lab mix, is crazy about his ball!  His ball fetish began pretty much the first day we brought him home and has never stopped.  Because of his age and his craze, it is difficult for him to stand when he has been lying down on the floor or his bed for a while. Chico on the other hand, could care less about a ball.  The only toy he likes is his toy chipmunk that we gave him the first day he was dropped on our doorstep.  He does have a few physical problems however.  He is missing the ball in his hind leg hip socket and he has a compressed disc in his neck.  He has his days when walking is very difficult. I have tried various beds for both but had not gone the route of orthopedic beds yet. The makers of Crypton pet beds contacted me to test their product.  Not only are they  known for making beds that really last but they have an orthopedic bed that is supposed to be fantastic.  Crypton beds are made with fabric that resists moisture, stains, odor and bacteria (the tag says that spills just wipe away!) I took them up on their offer and two beautiful beds just arrived!  Can’t wait to test them on Chico and Abe and see the result!  I hope they like it!  Orthopedic AND odor resistant?  What could be better? Keep following my blog as the Crypton story to...

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Having a baby? Tips to prepare your four legged child.

Posted by on May 31, 2011 in Lifestyle, Paws for Thought, Safety | 0 comments

If you are like me, your dog or cat is your baby…the center of your world, the light or your life….you will do anything for them buy anything for them…..until the human baby comes along.  Unfortunately, the arrival of a baby oftentimes means the pet is not only dethroned but re-homed.  I hear stories like this far too often and almost 100% of the time the dog or cat should have remained with the family. My husband and I welcomed our new baby Sebastian in April 2011 and I am happy to say that our dogs are handling the transition beautifully…with a couple of funny exceptions.  Chico howls when the baby really cranks it up and Abe may give a loud WOOF or two to make sure Sebastian knows who’s boss!  But all in all…they have been wonderful. It is normal for your pet to feel something akin to sibling rivalry when your new child comes home.  He is losing his rank in your pack…dropping down a notch or two and will need to adapt to their new role To make this transition easier, there are many things you can do before the baby comes home:  Spay or Neuter your pet- if your pet is still in tact, now is the time to change that.  Dogs and cats that have been altered tend to be more mellow. Training- it is very helpful to have a well trained dog prior to welcoming a new baby.  Take the time to enroll in a group class or have a trainer come to your home.  Having the basic commands under your belt will help out immensely.  Make changes now and not after the baby arrives:  For example, if you plan to keep your dog or cat out of the babies room…begin training that prior to the baby coming home.  A baby gate may be helpful in this example.  Or, if mom is the pet’s favorite, begin spending a bit less time with the pet and have dad take on a larger role…this way, when the baby comes along it will be normal for mom to not dote 100% of the time on fido.  The goal is to not have your dog or cat associate changes with the new baby.  These changes were already existing and then the baby came along. Get your pet used to smells, sounds and a new routine- prior to baby arriving on the scene, purchase a baby doll that makes baby sounds, walk around the house with it in your arms, put the doll in a stroller and take your dog on a walk with you.  Use baby powder and baby lotion. Receiving blanket and introductions- prior to mom, dad and baby coming home, have a friend or relative bring the receiving blanket to your house and allow your dog to smell it thoroughly…this way, when the baby arrives, fido will be accustomed to his/her scent. When the baby does come through the door, the dog should meet the baby immediately.  Have one of the parents hold the baby up out of the dogs reach and let the dog smell the babies feet.  Over the days that follow invite your dog to sniff the baby many times and be a part of the routine as much as possible.  Of course, always under supervision…dog and baby should never be left alone together.  Following these few tips will help your two legged and four legged babies peacefully...

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