It’s National Dog Day

National Dog Day

Break out the party hats because it’s National Dog Day! Founded in 2004 by pet lifestyle expert and author Colleen Paige, this day is also known as International Dog Day or National Dog Appreciation Day and is celebrated annually. National Dog Day serves to help the public recognize the number of dogs that need to be rescued each year, as well as to acknowledge family dogs and dogs that work selflessly to save lives, keep us safe and bring comfort.

How to Celebrate:

  • Consider adopting! Visit a local shelter or rescue group to adopt a new furry family member that will be forever grateful.
  • Donate to the cause! Citizens, dog owners or not, are encouraged to donate $5 to their local shelter on National Dog Day.
  • Celebrate your pup! Whether it is playing in the park or gifting them with a new toy, take the day as an opportunity to show appreciation to your loyal friend.
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Making a Difference in a Pet’s Life

Many people find joy in rescuing or adopting pets, but what about pet fostering? Pet fostering gives a pet the opportunity to live in a home environment instead of in a shelter and helps transition them to their “forever” home.  Pet fostering is very rewarding, but comes with many responsibilities. Make sure you consider all points of pet fostering before making the commitment. Below are some tips if you are considering fostering a pet.

  • Treat the dog or cat as if it were your own and give the pet love and attention it wants and needs.
  • Along with regular pet parent responsibilities (feeding, exercising, grooming), foster pet parents may have to do extra basic training including house training, leash walking, commands or behavior modifications to correct jumping, barking and chewing.
  • Help socialize the dog or cat with your personal pets, with pets in the neighborhood or with other humans.
  • When a family decides they want to adopt your foster pet, provide them with as much information as you can including the pet’s personality, diet and behavior.

You never know what you will get out of an experience by helping pets in need and each foster experience has their own unique story. If you are interested in fostering a pet, contact your local shelter to find out more information.

 

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Curing Your Couch Potato Pet

Does your pet seem to be acting up more than usual? Are you seeing destructive or attention-grabbing behaviors? Well it could be that your pet is itching for more exercise.  Why not take advantage of your pet’s need to stretch his legs and join him?

As we know, there are many benefits of exercising, but think of how many excuses we make to  get out of it. Pets are a great incentive to helping us stay in shape. Here are some ideas to make it fun!

  • Grab your dog’s favorite fetch toy and get ready for some sit-ups. On the first sit-up, throw the dog toy. Do another sit-up while your dog is chasing it. On the third sit-up, get the dog toy and repeat.
  • If you have a playful dog, stand with your legs shoulder width apart. While you squat, tap your dog with a toy. Lift the toy above your head so your dog jumps while you stand up.
  • Playing fetch can be good for you and your pet. There is always the traditional game of fetch or you can spice it up and challenge your pet. After throwing the ball, start running after it and see who can get the ball first.
  • Don’t forget about cats! Tie a lightweight toy with a string to your dumbbells. As you do your curls, your cat will be jumping for the toy.
  • Grab a mini flashlight and do the motion of jumping jacks. The constant moving light on the wall will drive your cat up the wall.

As your pet gets older, you may have to change their exercise routine. Keep an eye on your pet after long walks or strenuous activity. Just like humans, dogs can get blisters on their paw pads. No dog is the same, so find the best workout routine for you and your dog.  Check with your vet if you have any concerns before or after exercising with your pet.

 

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SuperZoo: Precise Team Spotlight

A few weeks ago we attended SuperZoo, the national show for pet retailers, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. The show was a huge success and we had a great turnout at our booth. We re-launched our Precise Naturals products at the show and the product line was well received by all who attended.

Not only did our products earn praise, but so did our staff.

After the show, we received an email from a retailer highlighting our sales team’s commitment to customer service. During her visit, she misplaced her purse and our sales team made every effort to return it to her. Here is what she had to say:

“My name is Debra Manfield, and I’m the owner of Four Paws Pantry & Spa. I attended SuperZoo, a great show by the way, and visited the Precise booth late Wednesday.  I wanted to learn more about your new grain free formulation and the staff there was very attentive and gave me the information I needed.  In my haste to wrap up a vendor appointment and leave the show, I l realized I misplaced my purse filled with everything I needed to survive the show, the city of Las Vegas and the plane ride back home. I didn’t realize the loss until several minutes after the show had ended.

Frantically I retraced my steps, my associate in tow, and came up empty.  We quickly made our way to the exit, hoping I would find a security guard and equally hopeful that someone had turned in my purse. Racing by the exit I noticed a group of people from, you guessed it, the Precise booth.  All of them had been waiting by the main exit hoping I would appear so they could give me back my purse.  Mind you this is after being on their feet from at least 9 that morning until 5 that afternoon!  They all took time from their “time off” to help a woman who, with out their commitment, would be facing several unpleasant outcomes.

I cannot thank them enough.  Your organization should feel proud that you have such dedicated employees, but then you probably already know that!”

 

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Using Social Media To Help Find Fido

Gone are the days of having only flyers and word-of-mouth to help bring home a lost pet. From micro chipping to collars with built in tracking devices, technology has made it easier than ever to watch over your dog.

Even with the advances, many pups still find ways to stray from home. Social media can play a large role in helping owners alert their communities and friends, while providing important pet information to help with the search.

When uploading a photo to a social media site, a pet owner should always use a recent image. If a dog is wandering the neighborhood as an adult and the only image alerting neighbors of the missing pet is a puppy photo, it will be difficult to relate the two. It also helps to include text with the image, describing any quirks your dog may have and additional contact information if you cannot be reached.

Encourage your social media networks to repost the image and information to reach a broader audience. Users can also offer any updates they may have regarding the lost dog’s whereabouts if seen around town.

Traditional outlets are still effective ways to reach your community members and get the message out there. Posting flyers and contacting nearby animal control units, shelters and veterinary clinics should never be left out when searching for a lost pet.

Maybe the most important tip to keep in mind when you’re dog has gone missing – don’t give up!

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Pet Accident? No Problem.

If you own a pet, there is a strong likelihood that you’ve had to deal with tricky stains at some point. While there are a number of cleaning products found in pet and grocery stores alike, some owners struggle with the use of chemicals in areas their pets frequent.

Creating natural stain fighters is often easier and cheaper than running out and  purchasing a bottle whenever your cat or dog has an accident. Many of these items you may even already have in your home!

Cleaning up after a pet accident doesn’t have to be stressful. By using the above items, you can rest assured your pets and your home will be protected from harmful cleaning chemicals.

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Bringing Home a Friend for Fido

Thinking of bringing a second dog into your family? There are a number of benefits in doing so. Whether your family dog is young or old, introducing a canine companion can help with a wide range of health and emotional issues.

  • Separation Anxiety: Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety when their owner leaves for extended periods of time. A second canine can help alleviate the destructive habits associated with the anxiety, allowing both dogs to entertain one another and offer a sense of companionship they are familiar with in a pack environment.
  • Revitalize an Older Dog: If your dog is aging, bringing home a younger dog can help increase the activity in your household. This in turn could potentially help extend your senior dog’s lifespan and overall disposition. For the pet owner, a younger dog can help with the healing after an elderly dog’s passing.
  • Easier Training: Many of the concerns had surrounding puppy training are erased when there is already a well-trained dog in the home. Dogs learn more quickly from one of their own, as they can look to him or her as an example.

Introducing a second pup to your family should be done with the same amount of dedication and thoughtfulness as bringing home your first. With patience, training and care, two dogs can double the happiness, support and love a pet brings.

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A Dog As Your New Roommate

Some apartment residents find themselves having reservations surrounding the thought of sharing their rented space with a dog. From neighbors to pet fees and restrictions, the thought of having a four-legged roommate can be intimidating. While certain breeds work better with the unique challenges apartments deliver, bringing a dog home doesn’t have to be ruled out because of an owner’s living arrangement.

  • The first step to take when thinking of bringing a pup home is to check in with your apartment complex’s office staff. More often than not, apartment complexes have restrictions set for specific breeds, as well as weight limitations
  • Prior to moving your newest addition in, make sure your apartment is pet friendly and prepped for welcoming your dog home. Have valuables and items that may offer temptation (shoes, cords, etc) hidden away and out of your pup’s reach. Allow your pet to become slowly accustomed to the new surroundings, and try to leave for shorter periods of time during the adjustment period.
  • Not everyone is an immediate fan of a new pooch. When spending time outside, introduce your neighbors to your dog and explain that he or she is getting acclimated to the new home. Learn who may have some fear associated with a dog in their immediate area, and teach your pup to stay close by as you walk.
  • Create a daily routine for your dog and stick to it. Staying consistent with feeding and outdoor times helps teach your pet when to expect to use the bathroom or get exercise. Apartments usually don’t offer the leisure of a fenced-in yard or doggie-door, so establishing a routine is vital to combating accidents.

Sharing a small space doesn’t have to be difficult. With proper planning and patience, a four-legged roommate can be the most enjoyable of them all!

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Communication Is Key

Similar to humans, tone and delivery are as important as what is being said when speaking to your dog. Commands, praise and behavioral corrections should all be delivered differently and dependent on the desired result.

We’ve gathered a few tips for helping pet owners better communicate with their pups:

  • Commands: To gain your dog’s undivided attention, commands should be preceded by the dog’s name. Speak in a confident, strong and firm tone. Using repetition will allow your pet to understand exactly what is being asked of them. Make sure to always reward your pet for listening.
  • Corrections: When correcting a dog, pet owners can differentiate the pet’s negative behavior from what they’ve asked in the command by using a higher-pitched tone. If your pet does not follow the command initially, follow up with an instructive reprimand. For example, if Spot does not sit after asked to, say “NO, sit”. If Spot is still unresponsive, instruct him into the sitting position.
  • Praise: Always show your excitement when praising your pup. Dogs strive to please their owners, and having an exuberant tone tells your dog that they have achieved just that.

The key to all forms of communication with your dog is consistency. Whether your words or tones, it could be more difficult for the dog to understand the commands being asked if words such as “off” and “down” are interchanged. Lastly, keep chatter positive for your pooch. You two are building a lasting relationship, so make it a positive, fun one.

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Dog Walking After Dusk

Walks are a part of most dog owner’s everyday routine, but taking them can grow more difficult with changing seasons. When the hours of available daylight shorten, there is a heightened need for taking safety precautions both during the walk and before stepping out of the door.

Dressing for visibility ensures you and your pet are seen by others on the road, especially in lower lit neighborhoods. Light colors and shiny fabrics help drivers and other pedestrians stay alert and notice your path. Reflective strips are the ultimate in clothing visibility and are also offered on dog collars and leashes.

Always keep a cell phone on you in the case of an emergency. While cell phones can act as a distraction to some, having it accessible is an important factor when leaving your home for an extended amount of time. Smart phones also offer flash light features if needed during your outing.

As with any walk, a well-trained dog helps ensure overall safety. If your pup doesn’t walk well on a leash, he or she is more at risk to travel off path or away from the owner entirely. Teach your pet how to properly interact with bypassing dogs, and always stay alert.

Don’t let the lack of daylight put a damper on you and your dog’s quality time. With a little preparation, walks are possible during any hour!

 

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