Celebrating International Assistance Dog Week

Some heroes don’t need capes– they have four paws, a tail and a vest to signal their commitment to helping others. They can navigate busy crosswalks for those with low vision, alert a diabetic when their blood sugar is low or assist in other everyday tasks like taking in the groceries or retrieving keys. These are just a few ways assistance dogs act as valuable additions to the lives of their human partners.

Here at Precise, we want to celebrate the important work of assistance dogs with International Assistance Dog Week, starting on Sunday. This year’s celebration will go from Aug. 6 – 12, and we want to take the opportunity to honor the dedication of these canines and educate others on the importance of assistance dogs and their training.

A large part of raising awareness for assistance dogs involves educating others on the responsibilities of these animals. An assistance dog can work under various categories and be a guide dog for a person with low vision, hearing alert dogs for those with partial or total hearing loss, or service dogs which assist people with mobility-related tasks.

Two other types of assistance dogs operate in the field of medical assistance and are labeled as seizure/seizure response dogs and medical alert/medical response dogs. Seizure alert/seizure response dogs alert or respond to conditions like seizures, heart attacks, diabetes, epilepsy, strokes, post-traumatic stress, anxiety attacks and panic attacks. A medical alert/medical response dog is responsible for alerting a person of any oncoming medical conditions previously listed.

Acting as well-behaved helpers and best friends, assistance dogs go through an extensive training process that ensures they’re able to work diligently and attentively for their human partners. Their basic areas of training include manners, task training, obedience, and proofing or public access skills. Assistance dogs wear an official vest, jacket, backpack or harness that allows them to enter any public space such as a store or restaurant alongside their owners to provide them assistance as needed.

Interested in learning more? Check out these personal stories illustrating the heroic deeds performed by assistance dogs and their transformative impacts.

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Beat the Heat with Precise

It’s officially summer. As you and your pets spend more time outside, it’s important to enjoy the sunny weather with proper safety measures in place. Here at Precise, we want to share ways to help your pet beat the heat and stay cool and happy as the temperatures continue to rise.

#1. Is the Pavement Too Hot?

You wouldn’t walk barefoot across your driveway in the summer and expect not to get burned, so don’t forget the hot asphalt can be painful for your pet’s feet too! Check if the pavement is safe for your pet by firmly pressing the back of your hand to the asphalt for seven seconds. If you experience discomfort, you shouldn’t’t walk your pet on that surface without paw protection. The pads of your pet’s feet can only withstand temperatures of up to 125 degrees Fahrenheit before skin destruction occurs, so try walking your pet in the morning and evening to avoid the higher temperatures. Also, be sure to keep an eye on outdoor cats or dogs and provide them a shady place to rest during the hottest parts of the day.

#2. Dont Leave Pets in the Car

Never leave your pet unattended in the car, even if it’s a cloudy day and you don’t think it’s that hot. On a warm day, the inside temperature of a car can easily reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit in a matter of minutes. Even with the window cracked, the temperature inside a car is much higher than the outside temperature, and pets can quickly suffer brain damage or experience heat stroke. If you’re out on an errand, leave your pet at home if you can’t take them into the store with you to ensure their safety.

#3. Freeze Dog and Cat Toys

Putting your pet’s favorite toy in the freezer and bringing it outside for them is a neat way of making sure they enjoy the sunshine while also keeping cool. You can stick your pet’s toy right in the freezer or sit it in a bowl of water and create a frozen “ice sculpture” for your pet to work on melting to get to their toy. If freezing their toys doesn’t suit you, pets always enjoy having lots of ice in their outdoor water bowl. The ice can be fun for them to play with and it ensures their drinking water is a suitable temperature.

#4. Brush out Those Coats

It’s important to brush out your pet’s excess fur as they transition to their summer coat. Brushing prevents painful matting that can trap heat and moisture against the skin. By brushing your pet regularly, especially dogs with double-coats, you can help them remove their dense undercoat and create proper air circulation better-suited to the summer heat. Resist the urge to sheer off your pet’s fur if they have double coats like mastiffs and terrier types. Your pet will find itself lacking sun protection and insulation if you shave it. Insulation fur grows at a different rate than longer guard hair on the outside and it may take a long time for your pet to regain their natural appearance.

#5. Provide Water and Bedding Options

Let your pets choose how they want to lower their body temperature by offering ways for them to play in water or relax on bedding. Dogs may enjoy splashing in wading pools or jumping through sprinklers as they play in the yard, but cats will likely steer clear of those options. However, both animals can enjoy resting in the shade or laying on cooling gel pet beds or elevated cots to keep them off of the ground.

As you and your pet enjoy the summer sun, we hope you’ll keep in mind these options for ensuring your pet stays safe and comfortable this season. The more options your pet has to keep cool, the happier they’ll be in the summer heat!

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Five Ways to Celebrate Your Pet’s Birthday

We say it all the time—our pets are a part of our family. Their sweet meows, sloppy kisses, barks, and goofy antics make our personal social media channels adorable, and our phone storage very low. We constantly seek to capture the sweet things they do, commemorating each milestone our sweet fur babies make. Their birthdays should be no different! This week, the Precise team has conjured up five ways that you can make your pet’s birthday a pawesome one!

#1: Homemade Goodness

On our birthdays, we get cake. On your pet’s birthday, go the extra mile and make some homemade tasty treats! Check out a recent blog post we wrote on simple DIY pet recipes that both your feline and canine will love! Interested in switching things up? Pinterest has a ton of pet-friendly at-home recipes for your pet…like these pupcakes!

#2: Get Them a Birthday Gift

Your pet’s toy box is probably looking a bit outdated…or destroyed from playing too hard! Revamp their playful selection by either making DIY pet toys, or buying them new gear to toss! Your pet will be so excited to have a new fetch ball or scratching post to tackle!

#3: If it’s Hot, Grab the Ice

If your pet’s birthday is during the warm spring and summer months, a popsicle is just what they need. How do you make it? Simple. Grab some of your pet’s wet food and an ice cube tray. Fill the trays half way with your pet’s wet food. Fill the remainder with water. Freeze until solid. Then, go outside and let your pet cool down with a tasty, chilled popsicle!

#4: Lights, Camera, Cuteness

What’s the best way to commemorate an occasion? By capturing it! Grab your camera and get some photos of your precious pet on their special day. If you manage to get a shot of them each year, you’ll have a collection of images to last a lifetime. If your pet is comfortable, give them a birthday hat and party gear before taking the photo. See these photos for inspiration.

#5: Give Them an Extra Scoop of Wholesome Nutrition

You guessed it, we mean Precise. What better way to commemorate a year of happiness than an extra scoop of what keeps your pet healthy!

Get your pet’s special treat ready, fire up the candles (with your supervision), and sing your heart out to “happy birthday.” It’s your pet’s special day!

Mind you, many fur babies that have been adopted don’t have a birth “day” per say. After making a quick visit to the vet, the doctor should be able to tell you an around-about date that they were likely born (or, you could just celebrate for a week straight, just saying).  DOGust 1st also commemorates a universal birthday for all shelter dogs.

Does your pet have a birthday coming up? Tell us how you plan to celebrate in the comment box below!

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Four Easy DIY Easter Crafts for Pets

Spring has sprung! Break out your colorful wardrobe and start stocking up on bunny and egg shaped everything because it’s Easter time! Who says we’re the only ones who can have fun during this holiday? Pets should be able to join the festivities, too! To all the Easter-lovin’ pet parents out there―this one’s for you. Here are four easy DIY Easter crafts that will keep you and your furry friends hopping with joy on this Easter holiday:

#1. Easter Basket via Dog Mom Days

If we love waking up to an Easter basket, can you imagine how happy your animals would be? This Easter, surprise your pet with their own personal easy DIY Easter basket! Grab a cute basket and tie a colorful ribbon around the edge. Once you have your basket set up, stuff it with plastic eggs filled with dog treats, your dog’s favorite toys, and some dental chews to keep your doggy’s hygiene in tip-top shape…and voila! Easter basket complete. Be sure to discard the plastic eggs once your pup has found the treats in order to protect your animal from ingesting the plastic.

#2. Easter Egg Hunt via Pretty Fluffy

Who doesn’t love Easter egg hunts? We sure do, and know your animals will, too! This one’s another simple, yet fun, activity that will keep your animals out and about this holiday. The following steps are what you’ll need for the ultimate doggy Easter egg hunt. First, gather all of your treats―don’t be afraid to mix and match: dog treats, pieces of chicken, peanut butter in a Kong, and yogurt treats are all great options. Next, keep your animals inside while you disperse the treats in the yard. Be sure to put some in their favorite digging spots! Once you are finished, let your dogs out and watch them search for all the goodies.

#3. Easter Egg Mice via Petcha

Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about all of the cat lovers out there! For this fun Easter craft, you’ll need the following materials: plastic Easter eggs (the ones with holes are ideal), various feathers, sand/beads/or bells, hot glue gun, and a drill with a 5/64 or 3/32 bit (if needed). Step one: if your eggs don’t already have holes, use your drill to create two small little holes on the larger part of the egg; be careful not to crack the plastic in the process. Step two: use your permanent marker to draw a mouse face on the “peak” end of the egg. Step three: take your feathers and thread them through the holes and hot glue the feathers down on the inside of the egg. Step four: fill the egg with the sand, beads, or bells, close the egg and let your cat play! If you’re worried about your cat opening the egg, either tape or hot glue the two halves together.

#4. Cream Cheese Easter Nest Dog Cookies via Dalmatian DIY

Easter is the perfect occasion to binge on yummy chocolates and candies. Let your animals participate with these unique goodies that are sure to leave your pets begging for more. For this recipe, you’ll need: ½ block of softened, reduced-fat cream cheese, ¼ cup of coconut flour, ½ cup of rice flour, water for consistency, and food coloring. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Next, combine the cream cheese and coconut flour, then add the rice flour in increments forming a dough. Separate a small amount of the dough (2 tbsp. per color). Once separated, tint the dough with food coloring to create colored eggs. Roll the plain dough into balls and place on a lined cookie sheet and flatten the middle, making a nest shape. Roll the remaining tinted dough into mini eggs and place into the middle of the nests. Bake for 15 minutes, let cool, and let them dig in!

These crafts are sure to leave your animals happy and excited this holiday. For more fun and simple Easter DIY crafts and recipes, visit here. Hoppy Easter everyone!

 

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Ringing in 2017 with the Precise Pet Team

As 2017 greets us this weekend, the Precise Pet Team would like to thank you for another excellent year. We strive to innovate pet food formulas that take your animal’s unique dietary needs into account, while also developing your pet’s foundation for a long and happy life. Everything we do is with the health of your furry friend in mind, and we would not be successful without your continued feedback and support.

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Our 2016 year was filled with hallmark moments that we loved sharing with you. From tradeshow fun, to various philanthropic events, donating thousands of pounds of Precise kibble, disseminating hundreds of adoption kits, spending time with our 1,500 retailers, to sleeping in the cold to promote stray awareness; these memories will stay with us as we close this year’s chapter and look to our future in 2017.

Like you, we have a few resolutions of our own and cannot wait to share exciting new things with you in the future.

We sincerely thank you for your loyalty to the Precise Pet Products brand, and are eager to continue providing your pet with high-quality, wholesome nutrition in the new year!

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Happy HOWLidays from the Precise Pet Team

The time has nearly arrived to celebrate the joy in your heart for your family, friends, and furry loved ones. From the Precise Pet Products team, we would like to take this week’s blog post to wish you and your family a safe and enjoyable holiday season.

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While you’re enjoying this extra time at home with your furry friends and holiday guests, please be sure to keep these Precise Holiday Safety Tips in mind. Also, we’d like to take a moment to remind you to bring your pets indoors if adverse weather greets you during the holiday. If your pet is mainly outdoors, and just can’t handle being inside when there’s snow on the ground, we’ve got a few simple tactics that can help them stay warm amidst the frigid conditions.

Oh, and if you and your pet plan to indulge in your favorite festive dishes, we have some holiday exercise suggestions that we plan on kick-starting just before the new year!

We hope you have a wonderful time creating holiday treats for your companion and dressing them up in their holiday best, or worst if you prefer the ‘Ugly Christmas Sweater’ festivities!

Thank you for trusting us to provide your pet with the best nutrition for a long and healthy life. Happy HOWLidays from your favorite pet food company, Precise Pet Products.

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Tips for Traveling Without Your Pet for the Holidays

The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but they’re also the busiest. With gift giving, parties, decorating, and more, it’s easy to forget your travel plans until the day of departure. If you’re on-the-go this holiday season, and are unable to bring your furry companion along, we’re here to help get things in order. This week’s blog post features four tips on how to keep your pets safe while you’re away:

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#1. Make sure they have a caretaker

Whether you plan to take your animal to a “pet hotel” or kennel, have a house-sitter, or have someone stop by periodically through the time you’re gone—your pet is going to need someone checking in on them. No matter your method, your pet’s caretaker needs to be someone you trust, and preferably, someone who has interacted with your animal before. Not only will this keep your mind at ease while traveling, it will also help your pet develop a trust for them too.

#2. Have plenty of food and water available

Make sure your pet is well-equipped with the daily essentials before you leave, a.k.a., their Precise kibble and drinking water. Be sure to visit your local retailer to stock-up on your dry and/or wet kibble and also leave feeding instructions for the caretaker. Communicate how often they are fed during the day, how much they are fed, and how they prefer their food to be served (for those finicky eaters).

Be sure to keep your pet’s food in an easily accessible area for the caretaker’s convenience. Some pet parents even prefer self-feeders while their away to ensure that their pet is always hydrated and satisfied. Though, big eaters probably could benefit from some portion control per the caretaker.

#3. Leave your caretaker with some digits

Meaning yours, and your veterinarians. You’re going to miss your pet while you’re away, so be sure to check in with their caretaker, or their kennel, often. You can relax knowing that your pet is in good hands.

If something were to happen while you’re away, your caretaker will need to know your pet’s veterinarian contact information. Keep this in a central location, by the pet’s food, so everything will be in one place.

#4. Heavy-duty pet proof before leaving

When your pet’s alone, they’re going to take that as an opportunity to entertain themselves…which can get them into all sorts of trouble. Before you leave, make sure that chemicals, plants, small objects, and other hazardous materials are out of your pet’s reach. Check out these tips from the American Humane Society on how to effectively pet proof your home before departure.

While the Precise team recommends taking your pet along for the ride whenever possible, we understand that some places aren’t so accommodating to our beloved furry friends. We hope these tips put your mind at ease while you’re traveling this holiday season!

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Keeping Your Pets and Holiday Decorations Safe and Tidy

The holiday season is arguably the most exciting time of the year to decorate your home. For pet parents, it’s not always that simple, as pets can be easily tempted with your beautiful decorations. Keeping your holiday tidings just right, and your pet safe from harms way can be a lot of work…to say the least. Here are a few tips to keep your decorations holly and your pets just as jolly:

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#1 Be Cautious of Certain Decorations

Try to avoid tinsel, imitation snow, mistletoe and holly berries when decorating. If an animal ingests any of these decorations, they could experience serious digestive issues. If you must use them, please be sure to keep them out of your pet’s reach.

Your pet may also be intrigued by your heirloom ornaments. Keep these hallmarks high on the tree, and filter in shatter-resistant ornaments wherever possible.

#2 Put Those Lit Candles in a Safe Place

We all love warming holiday-scented candles, but it is important not to leave those flames unattended. Pets could potentially burn themselves, or knock them over and cause a fire. Put the candles on a high, stable surface, like a mantel, to enjoy the holiday scents.

#3 Keep Wires Out of Paw’s Reach

Try to keep all wires from decorations and string lights taped down, or out of your pet’s reach. Not only can they tear the wires, or become tangled in your holiday décor, they could also become electrocuted by decorations that are plugged in.

#4 Be Careful with Your Holiday Plant Placement

While consumption of some plants can be a great source of vitamins and help your pet’s digestion, holiday plants are a different story. Eating poinsettias can cause irritation to the mouth and esophagus, while ingesting holly and mistletoe can cause vomiting and diarrhea, excessive drooling, and abdominal pain.

Make sure your tree is secured, and be sure to vacuum loose pine needles, as they could potentially puncture your pet’s intestines if consumed. Further, avoid using chemical preservatives on the tree; it could contaminate the tree water that your pet may drink.

If you’re feeling a bit weary of these holiday plants, especially if your pet enjoys chowing down on leaves, you may want to go the imitation plant route.

Decorating is one of the best parts of the holiday season, but with pets in the home, this needs to be done safely. Take these tips into consideration when ringing in the holiday cheer this year!

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National Mutt Day 2016 – Round Two

So, 2016 has taken two days to honor our mutts—and we absolutely love it. National Mutt Day was created in 2005 to celebrate the most unique dogs in the world, our loving mixed breed pups.

On a serious note, mutts happen to be the largest population in animal shelters, with the highest euthanizing rate. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness for these pups hoping to find their forever home. There are many incredible reasons to adopt any dog, but here are four to showcase our mutts:

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#1. Mutts tend to be healthier

There have been studies showing that mixed breeds are actually less prone to diseases compared to the purebred dog. That means they will stay healthier due to their hybrid ancestry—absorbing the best characteristics of each breed they’re made up of. Mutts even have a longer life expectancy and tend to be very active.

#2. No two mutts are the same

A lot of purebreds look very similar, but a mutt is a product of many breeds. You will never find any mutts that look the same; they all have their own distinctive features that make them wonderful, whether it be their size or color. The special pup you adopt will be one-of-a-kind.

#3. They don’t break the bank

Adopting a shelter pup is affordable. Not only is their adoption price lower, since these pets tend to be incredibly healthy, they won’t require as many trips to the vet. You can also get your companion sooner! Just walk into a shelter and fall in love with one; plenty are patiently waiting!

#4. It’s not just a companion

These dogs have many awesome attributes, but those are often overlooked, as an estimated 2.7 million are euthanized, or wait years to be adopted. When you adopt a mutt from a shelter, you are saving a life.

Be sure to do some research before taking the leap to adopt. If you aren’t ready to adopt a mutt just yet, you could always make a small donation to your local animal shelter! We hope you enjoy National Mutt Day, and show our mongrels a little extra love today.

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Five Halloween Treats to Avoid Giving Pets

Decorating the house, getting dressed up, and indulging in a variety of treats is what Halloween is all about. Waking up the day after Halloween with a ‘post party’ sugar crash and a stomach ache—not so much. Although you may not be feeling so great post-party, that doesn’t mean Fido has to be in the same state. Avoid these five Halloween treats to keep your pets happy and healthy during your spooky festivities:

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Chocolate Covered Raisins

This sweet treat is a double ‘no-no’ as chocolate and raisins are toxic for pets. Chocolate is known to cause vomiting, seizures, and diarrhea; and raisins are known to potentially cause severe kidney failure. Avoid giving this sweet nightmare to your pets; in the case that your animal does consume this candy, be sure quickly contact your veterinarian to advise on next steps.

Candy Corn

This Halloween staple is difficult for anyone to stop eating after popping a couple pieces into their mouth. Just think – if people have a hard time resisting eating a whole bag at one time, imagine how hard Fido has to refrain from indulging. Candy corn is almost purely sugar and can cause severe diarrhea and gas in your furry friends, so be sure to stash these sweets away from paws reach.

Hard Candies and Wrappers

Small, hard candies are difficult for animals to chew and can end up getting caught in your animal’s windpipe causing potential choking. Also, just as you wouldn’t deliberately give your pet dangerous candies, be aware that candy wrappers can also pose serious, life-threatening hazards that could lead to surgical intervention.

Salty Foods

Many people like to pair salty snacks, like chips and pretzels, alongside sweet treats during Halloween. Although you may enjoy these salty-sweet flavors, avoid sharing these snacks with your animals as it can lead to serious side effects including vomiting, diarrhea, high temperatures, and seizures.

Alcohol

You may be thinking, “well that’s a no-brainer,” but we’re not just referring to drinking. What most pet parents don’t realize is that giving animals foods that are baked with alcohol (i.e. cakes, cookies) can potentially cause the same effects as giving them the real thing. If you plan on baking Halloween treats that contain alcohol, be sure to place it in an area where your furry friends are unable to reach.

We don’t mean to frighten you before All Hallows Eve—but let’s face it, no one wants to become a sick puppy during the festivities. By avoiding these five foods during this spooky evening, you can ensure your animal’s health stays up to par.

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