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Guest Post from Sherry of TripsWithPets.com

Memorial Day symbolizes the start of summer for you and your pet. Before you start planning trips to the beach and summer getaways, keep in mind that it’s important to plan ahead for pet travel and always keep the best interests of your furry, four-legged friend in mind.  Traveling with your pet can be a wonderful and bonding experience or a not so pleasant one.  It’s all a matter of proper planning and preparation.

Here are the top tips to ensure your Memorial Day getaway with your pet is a safe one.

  • No Heads Out the Window:  Although many pets find that sticking their head out the window is the best part of the road trip, it’s not safe.  Your pet can easily be injured by flying debris.  This should go without saying, but NEVER travel with a pet in the back of a pickup truck. Some states have laws restricting such transport and it is always dangerous.
  • Frequent Pit Stops:  Always provide frequent bathroom and exercise breaks. Most travel service areas have designated areas for walking your pet. Be sure to stay in this area particularly when you pet needs a potty break, and of course, bring along a bag to pick up after your pet.  When outside your vehicle, make sure that your pet is always on a leash and wearing a collar with a permanent and temporary travel identification tag.
  • Proper Hydration:  During your pit stops be sure to provide your pet with some fresh water to wet their whistle.  Occasionally traveling can upset your pet’s stomach. Take along ice cubes, which are easier on your pet than large amounts of water.
  • Watch the Food Intake:  It is recommended that you keep feeding to a minimum during travel.  Be sure to feed them their regular pet food and resist the temptation to give them some of your fast food burger or fries (that never has a good ending!).
  • Don’t Leave Them Alone:  Never leave your pet unattended in a parked vehicle. On warm days, the temperature in your vehicle can rise to 120 degrees in minutes, even with the windows slightly open. In addition, an animal left alone in a vehicle is an open invitation to pet thieves.
  • Practice Restraint:  Be sure that your pet is safely restrained in your vehicle.  Utilizing apet safety harnesstravel kennelvehicle pet barrier, or pet car seat are the best ways to keep your pet safe.  They not only protect your pet from injury, but they help by keeping them from distracting you as you drive.  A safety harness functions like a seatbelt.  While most pets will not have a problem adjusting to it, you may want to let them wear the harness by itself a few times before using it in the vehicle. If your pet prefers a travel kennel, be sure it is well ventilated and stabilized.  Many pet owners prefer vehicle barriers, particularly for larger pets.  Vehicle barriers are best suited for SUVs.  Smaller pets are best suited for pet car seats.  The car seat is secured in the back seat using a seat belt and your pet is secured in the car seat with a safety harness.  In addition to it’s safety features, a pet car seat will prop up your smaller pet, allowing them to better look out the window.  No matter what method you choose, back seat travel is always safer for your pet.
  • Safe and Comfortable:  Whatever method you choose to properly restrain your pet in your vehicle, be sure to make their comfort a priority.  Just as it’s important for your “seat” to be comfortable for your long road trip, your pet’s seat should be comfortable too. Typically their favorite blanket or travel bed will do the trick. There are also some safe and very cozy pet car seats available that your pet may find quite comfy.

Careful preparation is the key to ensuring that you and your pet have a happy and safe trip.

About TripsWithPets.com

TripsWithPets.com is the #1 online resource for pet travel. It was named BEST pet travel site by Consumer Reports! TripsWithPets.com offers resources to ensure pets are welcome, happy, and safe when traveling.  The website features a directory of pet friendly hotels & accommodations across the U.S. and Canada, airline & car rental pet policies, dog friendly beaches, search by route, pet travel tips, pet travel supplies, along with other pet travel resources.

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If you’re an avid All Dog Blog follower (props to you! :) ), you’re probably aware that we haven’t been spending as much time here as usual finding you good deals, sharing articles, product reviews, and all-a-round great dog stuff!  Yes, yes…we know you’re sad, we’re sad too!  But alas, the reign of silence is about to come to an end!  The future hubs and I have been building our first-ever dream home since October and she’s finally finished!  We close Friday, and we couldn’t be more excited about it.  Bubbs knows something is up with all the boxes lying around, and his toy getting packed up, and not much room to run and play (not there was much to begin with!), but has yet to see his new diggs and very own backyard to run and bark and do his business!  We couldn’t be more excited for him and his kitty brother, and for us too of course!  It’s been a lot of hard work to finally get here and it’s still pretty surreal that all of this is happening.  I’m mostly excited about finally having space for a desk and work space of my own to work instead of the couch in front of the tv!

Since we’re in the process of moving and our lives are being thrown to the boxes, we felt it was only appropriate to have a great guest post by TripsWithPets.com!  A Moving Guide For Pets!  There’s some really great tips!  Luckily we’re moving on 10 minutes away from where we are now so we’re just making sure Bubbs has his seat belt on!

 

TripsWithPets Launches Pets On-the-Move:
A Moving Guide for Pets

South Portland, Maine – May 4, 2011 – TripsWithPets knows how challenging moving to a new home and a new town can be, especially when the move involves a beloved family pet. In order to meet the needs of families facing this difficult transition, TripsWithPets is excited to announce the launch of Pets on-the-Move: A Moving Guide for Pets,www.tripswithpets.com/petmove. This free online moving guide is jam-packed with everything a family needs to know in order to successfullymove with their pet.

Pets On-the-Move offers the following helpful information and resources:

  • Pet Relocation Service: If the move is international or cross-country, or if flying or driving with your pet just isn’t an option, a pet relocation service may be a wise choice. This section provides information about securing a reputable company as well as helpful tips to narrow down which one to choose.
  • Airline Pet Policies: There are a lot of regulations regarding flying with pets. This section displays a list of airlines and directly links to that specific airline’s policies.
  • Search by Route: Due to a massive request for this service, users can simply enter the departure and destination cities and a list of all the pet friendly hotels (and other pet friendly properties) within a 3 or 5 mile radius of the route are returned. This is perfect for those families driving to their new homes and need to know where they can stop with their pets along the way.
  • Tips, tips, and more tips: There are a hundred and one things to remember when moving with a pet. The guide covers everything from what to prepare for before the move to advice on making sure furry family members are comfortable in their new surroundings.
  • Pet Moving Essentials: You name it…pet travel crates and kennels, pet seat belts, vehicle pet barriers, and pet car seats…Pets On-the-Move includes all the pet travel supplies you’ll need.

“Pets On-the-Move is our answer to all of the inquiries we receive on a regular basis from people moving with their pets. Over 89 million US and Canadian households have pets but there wasn’t a well-defined resource out there that we could send people to, so we made our own,” said Kim Salerno, President of TripsWithPets. “This guide is perfect not only for the families who are moving, but for real estate agentsmoving companieslocal chambers of commerce – any organization that’s involved in the moving process and wants to better serve their clients!”

TripsWithPets designed Pets On-the-Move:  A Moving Guide for Pets to be a one-stop shop for moving families to get all the information they need to make sure their furry friends are cared for, happy, and safe every step of the way to their new home.  To learn more visit,www.tripswithpets.com/petmove.

TRIPSwithPETS.com is the premier online guide for pet travel – offering resources to ensure that pets are welcome, happy, and safe when traveling. Visit www.tripswithpets.com, to find a directory of pet friendly accommodations across the U.S. and Canada, airline pet policies, pet travel tips, pet travel supplies, along with other valuable pet travel resources.

Have you ever had a major move with your pets?  Across country or states away?  We’d love to hear your stories and tips on moving with pets!  Send them in or comment below!

We can’t wait for you guys to see the new place!

 

 

Recently, my soon-to-be Sister-in-Law had a run in with two little dogs, being walked by a young boy, who ran across the street and attacked her lovable dog Bear.  A typical walk down the street turned nasty in an instant, and luckily, neither her, Bear, or the other dogs were seriously injured and didn’t require an emergency trip to the vet.

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Hopefully you’ve never had to experience rushing your pet to the vet for a serious emergency situation, but if you have or if you haven’t, you either now know or you should know how important it is always be prepared.  While working as a vet tech I saw a lot…HBC (hit-by-car), heat stroke from being left in a hot car, bee and insect stings, bloat, broken legs, dog bites, and lots of other emergency situations that come with the territory of owning a pet.  Now more than ever, especially this time of year when more people are out and about with their pets enjoying the weather and longer days, should you be prepared for any such situations.

For some great tips on how to be prepared for pet emergency, we have a really great Guest Post for you, courtesy of The Wet Nose Guide!

 

Emergency Dog Care In New York (Or YOUR City!):  Preparation Is Key

By:  The Wet Nose Guide

As many dog owners have found out in awful, harrowing scenarios, emergency medical care for your furry friend is not the kind of thing you want to play by ear. In a large city like New York, there are dozens of emergency care centers and a much larger number of veterinarians and such overwhelming number of options can make an already bad situation worse. Luckily, scary situations can be made better through preparation. A basic knowledge of NYC’s emergency vets can help ensure that a potentially bad situation with your pooch turns out alright.

When faced with a doggie health emergency, your first instinct might be to call one of the many emergency vets that specialize in urgent care. However, if your health problem arises during regular business hours, the very first person you should call is your regular vet. Unlike emergency vets, your primary veterinarian should be familiar with your pup, and may be able to offer greater insight into the problem than a vet that has just been introduced. Furthermore, if your dog’s illness is the result of a pre-existing condition known to your veterinarian, medication may be in stock that other New York vets do not carry. This option is, of course, entirely dependent upon your personal veterinarian being available at the time of an emergency, however, the most knowledgeable option is always best.

If your regular veterinarian is not available to tend to your pup during a health crisis, you should next turn to a nearby, pre-selected emergency care center (preferably one that is open 24/7, in case the emergency occurs late at night). Be sure to put together a list of two to three possible New York emergency vets that you trust to take care of your dog, and visit them at least once to make sure their facilities are adequate.

Dealing with your canine companion’s health emergency can be one of the scariest experiences of your life. A little preparation however, paired with the right information, can go a long way towards bringing such situations to a short and happy conclusion.

 

How are you prepared to face a pet emergency, should one unexpectedly arise?!

 

 

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We haven’t seen any just yet, but with flowers beginning to pop up everywhere they’re sure to be out soon…BEES and other stinging insects.  I’m always worried when summer comes and every time I take Bubbs out for his potty breaks and there are bees and wasps hanging out by our back door.  We’re constantly ducking, dodging, and keeping a look out.  Half the problem is he sees them as a pest and tries his hardest to snatch one up and eat them!  The last thing any pet parent needs is a dog stung in the mouth and have to rush them to the vet, and that is why we always recommend that during the summer you ALWAYS keep a very close eye on your dog while outdoors in the backyard or on walks.  Even if they stop to smell the flowers, stay close!  I’ve seen many many many times (this time of year) dogs rushed to the vet with their eyes swollen shut and panic-stricken owners who don’t know what to do.  It can be very stressful for both you and your pet!

If you ever notice any swelling around the face, torso, paws, or little hive bumps on their body, call the vet immediately and they’ll instruct you on what you should do and get them there fast!

Here are some really great tips on what to do in an emergency, courtesy of VCA Animal Hospitals!

Use ‘JoliPrint’ to print this page and keep it close by this summer!

 

Pet First Aid – What to Do in an Emergency
On Behalf of VCA Animal Hospitals, 4/27/11

When a pet gets injured or stops breathing, it can be a stressful and frightening situation. It’s crucial for all pet owners to have a basic understanding of common veterinary medical emergencies and basic first aid to help their pet in an emergency.

While no one can be prepared for all emergencies, there are some simple guidelines you should follow and things to look for if your pet seems ill or is involved in an accident.  This knowledge may just save your pet’s life.

What should I do if my pet gets injured?

1.  Keep calm and assess the scene for any additional threats to you or your pet. This is important for everyone’s safety.

  • If your pet is injured, it’s likely they will be panicked or disoriented. The stress of an emergency involving a pet or owner can cause an otherwise friendly animal to act aggressively. It is important to ensure the safety of all rescue personnel that are attempting to assist with an injured animal by keeping everyone calm, including your pet.

2.  Keep your pet warm, as quiet as possible, and keep movement to a minimum, especially if there is possible trauma, broken limbs, or any neurological symptoms.

3.  Contact your local veterinarian, inform them of the situation and get specific first aid advice.

4.  To safely move or transport an injured dog, get somebody to help you.

  • For a small dog, put it into its carrier (remove the top for easy and safe access to the carrier; don’t push an injured dog through the small door or opening), or use a suitable container such as a strong cardboard box.
  • For a larger dog, use a makeshift stretcher made out of some rigid material such as an appropriate sized, sturdy piece of wood. Carefully maneuver the dog onto a blanket or coat so that it can be gently moved to the carrier, box or stretcher. The blanket will help stabilize the neck and spine, and prevent inadvertent biting or scratching from the injured pet.
  • To safely move or transport an injured cat, use suitable container such as a strong cardboard box or a cat carrier (remove the top for easy and safe access to the carrier; don’t push an injured cat through the small door or opening). Drop a blanket or thick towel over the patient. Tuck it in carefully or maneuver the cat onto the blanket so it can be gently placed in the container. The blanket will help stabilize the neck and spine and prevent inadvertent clawing or scratching from the injured pet.

5.  Get to a nearby veterinary hospital as soon as possible. After being involved in an emergency or accident, it is important that you take your pet for a veterinary examination as soon as possible, even if it appears to have recovered fully.

What should I do if my pet stops breathing or becomes unconscious?

Although frightening to think about, when pets become unconscious or stop breathing due to heat stroke or a variety of other reasons, it’s important to know what to do. At the first sign of trouble, all attempts to get to a veterinarian should be made, but knowing basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) techniques may help you save your pet’s life until veterinary help is available.

Pet CPR – How To

CPR is best when performed by two people. One begins rescue breathing and the other monitors the heartbeat or begins chest compressions, if necessary. CPR is as simple as ABC:

Lay your dog or cat on his/her side on a firm, flat surface.

“A”: open the AIRWAY. Extend their head and neck (by lifting his/her chin) for the best possible breathing position. It is important to check for a breathing obstruction. Open their mouth, look in the back of the throat and grab the tongue and pull it outward. If an object is blocking their throat or airway, use your fingers or a grasping instrument (pliers, etc) to remove it. Only perform this maneuver if your pet is unconscious—otherwise you may be bitten badly. If the object cannot be reached or pulled out, use the Heimlich maneuver to try to dislodge the object.

“B”: check for BREATHING. Watch for the rise and fall of the chest and feel for breath on your hand. A lack of breathing and oxygen will also cause your pet’s gums to appear bluish.

“C”: check for CIRCULATION. Place your fingers or hand on the left side of your pet’s chest—just behind the elbow—to feel for a heartbeat. You can also try to feel their pulse by pressing gently on the inside of the top of the hind leg. If there is a heartbeat or pulse, continue with rescue breathing only (tips 5-7). If there is no heartbeat begin chest compressions also (tips 5-10).

Grasp your dog’s or cat’s muzzle (snout) and hold their mouth shut.

Place your mouth completely over their nose and blow gently. Don’t blow too hard—just enough to cause their chest to expand normally. Wait for the air to leave the lungs before breathing again. Give 20 breaths per minute (one breath every 3 seconds) until your pet begins breathing on his/her own or as long as the heart beats.

Continue CPR until your dog or cat breathes on his own or has a steady heartbeat.

To supplement these basic VCA CPR guidelines, many local American Red Cross chapters offer hands-on training in pet first aid procedures. They also offer detailed reference guides and DVDs which can help you learn CPR.

To learn more about VCA Animal Hospitals, visit the VCA Facebook page and VCAhospitals.com.


Stay safe this Summer and always practice safe outdoor activities with your dogs!

Thanks for passing along this great article to us, Stacy!

Thanks, VCA!

 

 

 

Go HERE to request your FREE ASPCA Pet Safety Pack!

This one includes a magnet with the Poison Control Hotline.

 

Go HERE to request your FREE ‘Rescue Me’ window cling!

 

These are a must-have in every house with pets!  My sister-in-law and her husband live in OK and were very close to the the wildfires that are going on out there.  We were pretty worried, and it just goes to show that you need to ALWAYS be prepared.  You never know what’s going to happen, and what mother nature has in store.

Go grab one, be prepared, and it could save your pet’s life!

 

 

It’s getting so close to Christmas, we can’t believe it!

Where has the year gone?!  We’re alllmost done with our Christmas shopping, and hope that most of you are done or almost done too because it’s stressful out there!  Although a new puppy or kitty isn’t on our list this year, some of you out there may be considering, or have already committed to bringing a new furry addition to the family this holiday.  While bringing a new puppy or kitty into the home is a joyful and exciting time, it can also become stressful with more responsibility on top of  your normal daily schedule, and not to mention a BIG life change for both you and your new pet!  To ensure you’ve considered everything before bringing home a new pet, we have a wonderful guest post today, courtesy of VCA Animal Hospitals & wonderful Dr. Donna Spector, DVM!

Considerations When Giving A Pet As A Gift

By Dr. Donna Spector, DVM

The holiday season is a common time of year for families to get new pets or for people to consider giving pets as gifts. The bustle and travel associated with the holidays does not provide the ideal stable environment a new pet needs to succeed with a new family.

If a pet is on your holiday list, make sure you have considered the following points:

  • Commitment and responsibility—pet ownership involves more than just providing food and water.  Pets require a rich and stimulating environment, exercise, training and proper healthcare—all of which require a commitment of time, energy and money.  All members of a home or family must be committed to the care of a new pet.  It must be decided who will feed, walk, groom and pick up after the pet in advance. Although pets are often chosen “for the kids,” the full responsibility of caring for a pet is often too much for children.
  • What species is best? Dog, cat, bird, snake, hamster or goldfish?  Pets come in many shapes and sizes and can provide wonderful companionship and give children the benefits of pet ownership responsibility.  Give consideration to what role you want the pet to have in your family before making this decision.
  • Why are you getting a pet? Is a pet coming into your home to be a loving companion for you or your children or is there another intended purpose (jogging partner, working dog, or home protector)?  Some dog breeds are better suited to the role of playmate versus protector. It is important to think about what roles a dog will play in the life of your family before selecting the breed for you.
  • What dog breed is best? It is important to consider your specific needs, lifestyle, activity level and the amount of space you have before selecting the best breed.  If your new dog is to be strictly a companion, choose several breeds that appeal to you in physical appearance (including coat type, size and shape) and then research the other breed characteristics. Keep in mind if a dog was originally bred to herd and protect, these behaviors are the most strongly inherited and you may find your family being herded through your own home like sheep! Although that is a funny picture, if this natural instinct is left unsatisfied, some dogs will become frustrated and develop bad behaviors.
  • Space. Do you live in an apartment or house? What are local dog laws? Do you have room for a kitty condo?  Where will you put a litterbox?  Often people assume that large pets need large spaces and that small pets are fine in small spaces….this is not always true! Huge dogs often sleep most of the day so a small space is just fine…as long as he gets out for walks and some moderate exercise. Some small dogs and cats are huge bundles of energy that require a large space and a lot of exercise to keep them manageable!
  • Size: Larger pets require more of everything!  Larger pets require more food, larger crates and beds, larger toys and increased costs are incurred when they require medication or other veterinary care.
  • Gender: Males tend to be slightly larger in stature than females of the same breed and somewhat more assertive.
  • Grooming: How much do you want to do? Longer haired pets require more daily care to keep tangles and mats under control. Some pets require frequent visits to the groomer for haircuts. How much shedding is acceptable for you?
  • Puppy/kitten or adult? Although puppies and kittens are adorable, they are a lot more work than adults! The training, playing, feeding, and exercising a youngster requires in the first several months can feel like a full time job! Remember the more time you invest in this stage of your new pet’s life, the happier you will both be. Acquiring an adult pet may be a better choice for a family who spends most of the day away from home or doesn’t have the time required to train a younger pet.
  • Where should you get your new pet? Consider adoption first and help support VCA Shelter Partnership Program.  Adoption is rewarding for a number or reasons—not only are you saving the life of a pet; shelters often have a huge variety of pets to choose from, and it tends to be less expensive than purchasing through a breeder.  Many shelters offer training and other classes or support services at very reasonable costs.  If you are purchasing a purebred puppy, a reputable breeder that allows you to visit the home or facility in order to observe the parents is recommended. Puppies from sources with extreme high pet density are often at higher risk for contracting disease and their parents cannot be observed. If you are choosing an older dog there are several breed-specific rescue groups that you can look into (akc.org).
  • First health requirements? If you adopt through the VCA Shelter Program, VCA will provide your pet’s first vet visit for free at one of their 520 animal hospitals! New clients can also get a complimentary wellness exam, so find the closest VCA Animal Hospital to you. This is a great opportunity to start your pet towards a long, healthy and happy life.
  • When should you see a Veterinarian? Whatever the source, type of pet or breed you choose for your family, it is very important to see a veterinarian early on to ensure a good start for a long healthy life.  Your local VCA hospital offers several programs for new pet adopters and for puppy and kittens.  Young dogs and cats will most likely need vaccine follow ups as well as parasite preventatives while older pets might be up-to-date on vaccines but may require a complete health check up.

If a new pet is part of the family plan, there are several great gift options to consider:

  • Pet toys
  • Books on pet care
  • Accessories—leashes, sweaters, beds, or other gear that pampered pets need!
  • A pet “gift certificate”.  Many local shelters offer a gift certificate in which the gift giver pays for all adoption costs.  There is no holiday rush and when a family is ready to adopt they choose their pet and redeem the gift certificate.

Once you answer these questions and have made your list of “wants”, a little research is necessary to find the breeds that best fit your needs.  You can visit online resources (akc.org, etc.), review breed books and your VCA veterinarian is always an excellent resource.  A pet is a companion you will have for up to 15 years—take the time to find the right pet to share your life with!

Happy and safe holiday wishes!

Dr. Donna Spector, DVM, DACVIM from VCA Animal Hospitals

Pets make a great gift for that special someone in your life, but be sure that you’re aware of all the things they’re about to take on, and they’re fully prepared to take on that responsibility, and if they’re not, that YOU are ready to do so.  Pets can make a great gift, and we all know that there are so many out there that need a home, but always be prepared and know that they’re a big responsibility and one for life.

Happy gift giving and Happy Holidays, from All Dog Blog!

With the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, we know that a lot of our readers will be traveling to visit family and friends.  While most pets will be spending their holidays with a pet sitter, in a boarding facility, or home alone for the day, some will be lucky little travelers and get to attend Thanksgiving and Christmas with their owners and distant relatives.  If you just didn’t have the heart again this year to let your pup be looked after by someone else or left home alone, and are planning on bringing him with you, we’ve got a great guest post you might be interested in reading!  Judy, from Truck Champ send in a great article she’s written, “5 Winter Travel Tips When Traveling With Your Dog”, and includes some great advice you should consider while you two (or three or four, etc.) are on the road!

5 Winter Travel Tips When Traveling With Your Dog by Judy:

I work for Truck Champ, a seller of automotive products, and consequently have the opportunity to meet a number of truck owners who also own dogs.  Fortunately, most are quite cautious about dog transport, however I occasionally encounter someone who is putting their dog at great risk simply as an oversight.  Many owners love to let their dogs ride in their truck beds but don’t take the necessary precautions to make this safe.  Also, beyond safe travel in trucks, there are several critical rules of transporting a dog in any type of car that should be heeded by everyone.

In hopes of reaching owners who may have overlooked these ideas or think they don’t apply for “safe” drivers, I have written an article onThe 5 Most Important Rules for Transporting Any Dog.

  • Saftey First! It’s not surprising that safety is not what is on your dog’s mind, so as the caring and loving pet owner you must take ahold of this responsibility. Ensuring your dog’s safety and happiness during your journey with provide you peace of mind. It may surprise you to know that over 29 million people travel with their pets, yet only about 20% use some sort of restraint. Your dog isn’t thinking restraint, especially when he spies a squirrel out the truck window. He’s thinking, “SQUIRREL!! Lemme out a here!”. Use a crate for your pet’s safety in the car or truck bed. Thay way, he can’t make an escape or drive the both of your nuts running back and forth on the car seat.
  • Be prepared for the cold. If you are planning a trip that includes “potty breaks” you may want to bring some foot protection booties in addition to their usual supplies (ie; food and water dishes, doggie waste bags, leash, and a collar with current tags). Nothing is worse than ice chunks in the pads of your paws (or so I’ve been told). Plus, your pet can slip and slide on ice and snow just like we pet parents are known to do. Don’t forget a towel to dry off wet fur after a romp in the snow. Your dog, and your car seats, will appreciate it. If you have a short-haired or little-haired dog, consider taking a doggie sweater along. As always, a blanket or pillow for resting is an important addition.
  • Keep antifreeze out of your pooch’s reach. Antifreeze is a important for your vehicle in the winter months, but is incredibly toxic and will poison your pet. It contains ethylene glycol which gives it a sweet taste so it will attracts dogs. Consumption can result in kidney damage, coma or even death.
  • Do not leave your dog alone in the truck (or car). You may think you’re doing Rover a
    favor by leaving him inside a running vehicles, nice and warm, if you need to run a quick errand. However, animals are as susceptible to carbon monoxide poisoning as we are. Leaving them in the vehicle while its shut off is also a bad idea as it can get cold very quickly. Keep a leash in your truck at all times so you can always bring him with you.
  • Break Time! You will want to have stops along the way to let your dog stretch, walk, and you-know-what. Never let Rover run without the leash as there can be dangerous objects hidden in the snow that he can step on and injure himself. There is the added risk of your pup getting lost too since they lose their sense of smell in the snow. You will want to be especially careful around frozen lakes and ponds, where your pet could slip and fall in.

Remember, a winter road trip is always better when everyone aboard, including your pet, is safe, happy and comfortable.  Happy travels!

Judy lives in Wisconsin with her husband and writes for her personal blog as well as her company’s. She works for Truck Champ, who sells an array of truck accessories. An animal lover at heart, she is dedicated to spreading the message about safe travel tips for pets and their owners.

Are you guys traveling with your pets this holiday season?  Are they one of the lucky ones who gets to participate in all the fun festivities?!  If you’ve got any other great tips that you like to follow when you’re on the move with your pups, we’d LOVE to hear them!

Thanks, Judy for sending in your great travel tips when traveling with our dogs!

(photo by psyberartist)

I’m not sure if everyone knows, but September is Senior Healthy Pet Month (I think it’s National Pet Insurance Month too, which certainly go hand-in-hand), and to honor our senior pets out there, we have great Guest Post for you today from Dr. Spector, DVM!

Top 10 Secrets to Aging Gracefully

Dr. Donna J. Spector, DVM

The key to helping pet’s live longer and healthier lives is early recognition of problems that come naturally with aging.  Follow these guidelines to help your pet make the most of their Golden Years.

1. – Become informed about the common medical conditions affecting older pets (7+ yrs old) —cancer, diabetes, kidney failure, arthritis, liver and intestinal disorders—and notify your vet immediately if your pet starts exhibiting any concerning symptoms.

2. – Find an excellent VCA veterinarian.  Older pets should visit their veterinarian every six months in order to detect problems early.  Because dogs and cats age faster than humans do, their health problems can progress much more rapidly.  Prevention is the best “medicine” and many diseases of older pets are easily managed if detected early enough.

3. – Continue attending to basic health maintenance such as flea and tick control, dental health, and vaccination to insure your pet is well protected against preventable diseases.  To avoid unnecessary risks, ask your veterinarian about newer vaccination protocols and anesthetic procedures for older pets.

4. – Consider the usage of supplements for your older pet.  Certain supplements may help counter degenerative organ changes that occur during the aging process.  For example, fatty acids have a proven anti-inflammatory affect in many organ systems; glucosamine may act as a cartilage-protecting agent to improve mobility; digestive enzymes and probiotics may be beneficial for gastrointestinal health; milk thistle can be used for chronic liver problems.  Ask your veterinarian what supplements might be right for your senior pet.

5. – Recognize that older pets often experience hearing loss and failing eyesight.  Although these are usually degenerative changes with no cure, your veterinarian should evaluate your pet for treatable conditions.  Make adjustments around your home to avoid dangerous situations for your pet—eliminate tables with sharp corners or holes in the yard that your pet may not see.  Announce yourself with your voice and footsteps when approaching your pet to avoid startling.

6. – Provide your older pet the healthiest and most nutritious food you can.  If you are considering making your pet’s food, work with your vet or a veterinary nutritionist to insure you are creating a complete and balanced diet.  In order to avoid problems with constipation, make sure both dogs and cats have free access to fresh, clean water.

7. – Don’t over-feed your pet.  As many pets age, their metabolism and activity levels decline which decreases their need for calories.  In general, older pets require 30-40% less calories than their younger counterparts.  Overfeeding can lead to weight gain, obesity, and increased problems with arthritis.

8. – Provide your pet adequate exercise.  With aging often comes decreased mobility and problems with arthritis.  It is important to continue exercise in order to avoid obesity and keep your pet’s muscles strong to support their aging and arthritic joints.  Swimming is an excellent exercise for older pets as it limits stress on joints and encourages a large range of motion. Leash walking and low-impact stair climbing are also good exercises.  Make sure to include a warm up and cool down period with every exercise session.

9. – Avoid stressful situations for your older pet.  As pets age they often become less tolerant in certain conditions.  Recognize what constitutes stress for your pet (crowds, noise, children, etc) and avoid exposure to keep them comfortable.

10. – Spend quality time with your older pet.  Many senior pets require extra nursing care or help with grooming—giving your pet some extra love and attention will help them thrive!

We love these tips from Dr. Spector.  In our eyes, Bubbs will always be our little puppy…

Bubbs @ 4 months

(Sorry for the poor quality photo, I was young and had a really crappy digi-cam!)

…but we know that he is getting older with each and every gray hair that appears, and it’s very important to us that he ages gracefully, comfortably, and stays in the best of health.  He’s not getting any younger, and neither are we.

We recommend that you read each and every one of Dr. Spector’s tips to keep your canine in the best of health in their senior years, and the years leading up to that time.  Take the advice and fit it into your dog’s life every day.  Feed them the best food from the very beginning, make sure they have yearly check-ups and don’t delay on any issues that may come up in between them, provide them with all the love and care they deserve because they don’t ask for much other than that.

If you have a senior dog (or cat) living with you, Happy Senior Healthy Pet Month!

Thanks, Dr. Spector, DVM!

We have a really GREAT Guest Post for you today!

When I’m not working here at All Dog Blog, I spend a lot of my time at my other job in retail.  The past couple of weeks I’ve noticed quite an influx of kids out and about with their parents, shopping for supplies, new clothes, and even new college students getting ready to venture away from home.  This week it’s pretty obvious that schools are back up and running, and college students are heading off to start their higher education careers as I’m seeing less and less of them.

One thing we tend to forget as pet owners, as we’re frantically trying to get things ready for the start of the new school year, or shipping off our first or last born away to college, is our pets.  There have been studies shown that pets can experience stress, anxiety, and even become depressed when a family member they are used to seeing every day, suddenly leaves, or even to be thrust back into being left home alone all day, when they’ve had three months of constant companions to play with!

Well, to help your dog (or cat) adjust to their new schedule, we have some great tips we can use to help them back onto our regular schedule, thanks to Paul Mann.

Back To School Tips For Pets By Paul Mann

Summer is ending and that means one thing: Back to School. For most people right now, images of school supplies, homework and a new fall wardrobe are dancing in parent’s heads. But there’s one thing people often forget about: the family pet.

It’s not abnormal for dogs and cats to get depressed when kids leave the house to head back to school – or go off to college.

Paul Mann, the Founder of Fetch! Pet Care (a national dog walking and pet sitting company) can talk with you about steps to take right now to help avoid the Back-to-School funk for pets.

    • Lots of exercise is a key. If you can exercise pets in the morning before you head to work, they’ll be so tired that there will be less time to think about the empty house they’re sitting in.
    • Don’t make a big deal about your leaving. If you smother the dog or cat in kisses, they’ll be able to tell that something’s up and will get anxious while you’re away.
    • Consider hiring a professional pet sitter for a mid-day dog walk or cat visit to break up the day. Even a half-hour walk or visit will give your pet the one-on-one personal attention they deserve, not to mention tire them out.
    • Give your pet an old T-Shirt while you’re gone so that he can cuddle up with it and have a familiar smell.
    • Get into a routine where you let the kids walk the dog after they get home from school – and before they start on homework. That way, the dog will look forward to the kids getting home from school.
    • If one of the kids usually feeds and plays with the cats, try switching up the routine so that the cat gets used to other people in the house. Also consider having the cat sleep with a different family member so they’re less attached to the kids.

    Thanks, Paul Mann for some great tips on how we can keep the health and well-being of our pets on track when things change in our lives!

    (Via El Caganer)

    We have a great, and very informative guest post, by Dr. Spector, DVM, full of great tips on traveling with your pups this summer!  Bubbs comes with us whenever we leave town, so before we leave we are always sure to double check we have everything he needs or may need during the trip.

    Read the following article for some great tips before jet-setting off with your pup:

    Pet Travel Tips, by Dr. Donna J. Spector, BS, DVM, DACVIM

    Count your pet in this summer when you make your travel plans! Pet friendly hotels, campgrounds and other summer vacation facilities recognize that “family vacation” just wouldn’t be the same without Fido and Sylvester!!

    Being prepared will ensure your summer trip is a fabulous pet vacation as well! Things to keep in mind:

    1. What type of trip are you taking? If you plan on spending most of your time outdoors; on the beach, hiking in the woods, taking long leisurely bike rides and having dinner on the grill….your dog will have a great time. If you are planning on touring buildings (museums, etc), taking guided tours, visiting the spa, and dining out on the town….your dog may be bored to tears….or worse, destruction of a hotel room. Even well-behaved dogs can exhibit unsavory behavior in strange places.
    2. Inquire about local leash and dog laws…can your dog be on the beach? In the woods? On or off leash? Is he allowed at outdoor cafes and restaurants?
    3. Have you inquired about pet friendly hotels or facilities in your vacation area? Facilities run the gamut from being “no pets allowed” to “pet tolerant” to “pet friendly”. Pet tolerant facilities often require a deposit and there is usually no special treatment for your dog or cat. Pet friendly hotels and facilities usually go out of their way—offering special treats at check-in, play programs, day care and sometimes even special spa treats and turndown service for your pet. Call ahead to get details and to reserve a space for your pet.
    4. Is there a local pet day care in the places you are going? This may be fun for your dog while you are out to dinner or getting that massage!
    5. If you are flying, call the airline and reserve a space for your pet. There is a fee and there are a limited number of pets on each flight. Depending on your pet’s size, they may be unable to fly in the cabin and this will require further information from the airline. You might also be interested in checking out Pet Airways (www.petairways.com), the world’s first pet-only airline!
    6. Visit your VCA veterinarian. Make sure your pet is current on his vaccinations, as well as flea, tick, parasite and heartworm prevention. Make sure your pet has been micro-chipped. This will enable identification if he ever gets lost. Get a health certificate and all of his vaccination tags. If your pet has a medical condition, take a copy of pertinent medical records in the event of an emergency. If possible, identify a veterinarian in the area where you will be vacationing. VCA Animal Hospitals are located nationwide: http://www.vcahospitals.com/main/directory.html


    Checklist of pet travel gear:

    1. Food and water bowls
    2. Portable (collapsible) bowls for day excursions
    3. Food in airtight containers—it is important to keep your pet’s diet the same while on vacation to prevent stomach upset
    4. Poop scooper and bags—to properly clean up after your dog
    5. Extra collar and leash—in case the original gets wet, torn or lost
    6. Identification tags—make sure there is a cell phone number on the tags in the event your pet gets lost
    7. Medication—bring any prescription or non-prescription medication your pet is taking
    8. Pet First Aid Kit—ask your veterinarian what to include for your particular pet. Good things to include are benadryl (diphenhydramine), triple antibiotic ointment, general antiseptic (nolvasan or betadine), bandage material (sterile gauze and a wrapping material), tweezers (for tick removal from pets or people if needed!), emergency veterinary contact information
    9. Pet bed or something comfy to sleep on
    10. Dog life jacket (if you are taking any aquatic excursions)

    Traveling with pets can be fun and enjoyable for all!  Happy Trails!

    Thanks, Ryan & Dr. Spector, DVM for allowing us to share your wonderful advice with our readers!  We know they appreciate it!  And so do we!

    Here’s a little photo for your viewing pleasure:

    Bubbs looking a little ‘wide-eyed’ out on the lake…sportin’ his life jacket of course!

    Isn’t he handsome!