Posts

Why Does My Dog Not Like New Year’s Eve?

If you are asking yourself this question, then you’ve probably had a traumatizing experience with Fido while watching the Times Square ball drop at midnight. If you’re like most people, New Year’s Eve is a night filled with lots of family, friends, fun, and noise. LOTS of noise. Though the noise may not bother you, your dog’s hearing is four times better than yours. Their natural instinct is to RUN.

One minute you’re cuddling with Fido and the next he is nowhere to be found. He most likely ran outside or hid under the bed, searching for a secure place to hide. While you’re frantically running around looking for your precious pooch, you get a knock on the door from your neighbor saying they found him wandering in their front yard. You think to yourself, “I’m so lucky I found you”.

If you can relate to this scenario, your dog most likely does not like New Year’s Eve.

A few reasons your dog doesn’t like New Year’s Eve

  • Decorations

See those streamers, balloons and party hats? They may be fun for you, but for Fido? Not so much. He may be scared and not recognize you. This may lead to a change in behavior and his reactivity to you. If he shows signs of fear, take the hat off and reassure your pup that everything will be okay.

  • Loud Noises

Noise makers, cheering and laughter are all part of the New Year’s Eve festivities. These are all scary noises for Fido. You may find him trembling and whining in fear. Ask your guests to bring the noise down a notch, and put your dog in a separate room with the TV or radio on.

  • Crowds

Is it your turn to host the annual New Year’s Eve party? Whether you are hosting a huge party, or it’s a group of your closest friends, these people are getting in your dog’s personal space. Large crowds are scary and Fido may react adversely. If your dog is not a social creature, spare him the anxiety and put him in a separate room.

  • Fireworks

Are your neighbors the type to set off fireworks in the middle of the street and make a huge commotion? If you answered yes, this may be why Fido is shaking uncontrollably while you “ooh” and “ah” at the light show. Fireworks are some of the scariest, loudest noises for dogs. Turn up the TV and keep your furry friend in a secure kennel or bedroom. If you have the opportunity to, try to stroke his back while you reassuringly hold him.

The reasons mentioned above may just be the tip of the iceberg to why your dog does not like New Year’s Eve. Just remember, while you’re excited and ready to ring in the New Year, keep your furry friend in mind!

 

What are the Leash Laws in Fort Collins?

 

Do you ever notice dog’s off leash at parks, on trails, or in neighborhoods? Then you start to wonder if they really need to be on a leash? What about the safety of smaller dogs and cats? Why have your dog on a leash if they don’t really need it? Especially if they have excellent voice command skills. And that’s why it is important to be familiar with our state’s leash laws.

Basically, the laws state that all animals need to be in a fenced in area or leashed. But what’s more is that this seems to be an area of great debate in Fort Collins; being as we have tons of trails and natural wildlife area to explore. Some pet owners don’t agree with always having to restrain their pets, especially if they love to spend time outdoors. But parents, home owner associations, dog owners vs. cat owners, all have different opinions.

What’s all the fuss about:

 

  • Owners like their pets to be able to expend energy and explore the wilderness
  • People are worried about wildlife and their own pets (big dogs vs. little dogs, dogs, vs. cats)
  • Destruction of property
  • Safety

No matter how you feel, if your pet is found off leash and deemed “a stray” the following is stated at the Larimer Humane Society:

Even the most responsible pet owners can be accidentally separated from their pets. Each year, Larimer Humane Society receives close to 5,000 stray animals. Licensed pets that wander away from home can be returned to their owner without ever coming to the shelter. Lost pets not in compliance with the local pet license ordinance will be brought to Larimer Humane Society.

If you encounter a stray animal and feel comfortable bringing it into the shelter, please do so. If the animal you encounter is wearing its license tag, you can call Larimer Humane Society and obtain the owner’s contact information to notify the owner that you have their animal.
Impound and boarding fees will apply to pets brought into the shelter. For more information regarding animals at large as it pertains to the Fort Collins municipal code, please visit code section 4-93.

Impound & Boarding Fees
The impound fee for pets wearing their license tag is $40.

The impound fee for licensed pets not wearing their tag and unlicensed pets is $60.
In addition to the impound fee, an additional $15 boarding fee will apply per calendar day.
Stray animals are held for five days, not including the day the animal was impounded. After the five-day waiting period, stray animals become the property of Larimer Humane Society and are evaluated for potential placement in our adoptions program.

Clearly there are a lot of points of view on this matter, but the law stands. So, keep your pets restrained or confined (humanely, that is) because it’s the law. And that’s why even if you don’t agree with it, you could face fines, which no one wants.

 

7 Foods Your Dog Should Never Eat

 

We’re usually careful about what our pets eat during the holidays, but there are things that they can get into all year long. Making sure that your pets are healthy  In fact there are seven foods that your dog should never eat.

1. Alliums

These types of food have been associated with a red blood cell damaging condition, hemolytic anemia. Garlic and onions, plus any food season with them could end up with your pup feeling disoriented, fatigued and listless. Plus, they could suffer rapid heartbeat, darkened urine or vomiting.

2. Spoiled food

I don’t know why some pet owners have fallen into a trap of letting our pets dispose of spoiled food, but we kind of have. But in all truth, if you wouldn’t eat it, then neither should your dog. Especially if it was mold or smells funny, send that old food straight to the trash.

3. Fried foods

There is no doubt that us Americans love our fried food. But extremely fatty food, such as fried chicken is very toxic for our dogs. We have more complex digestive systems that can handle the extra oil and breading, but our pet do not. This can cause pancreatic inflammation that can in turn damage to your dog’s other intestines.

4. Grapes/Raisins

We’re not really sure why that most dogs get sick from eating grapes, but it happens frequently. There is a strong correlation between eating grapes and kidney failure. If your dog has eaten grapes and show signs of diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, lethargy, or weakness, it’s time to contact the vet.

5. Macadamia nuts

Another mysterious and trouble causing food is macadamia nuts. Luckily this isn’t a big problem because your dog would have to eat a good amount of them to get sick. But if they do it can get serious. Symptoms from eating these nuts include, fever, muscle weakness, depression and vomiting.

6. Salty snacks

If your dog ingests too many salty they could end up with sodium ion poisoning. A chip or two isn’t going to hurt them; but if they get into a whole bag, you need to watch them closely and give them plenty of water. Symptoms include depression, high fever, diarrhea, vomiting,  excessive thirst, kidney damage, and seizures.

7. Xylitol

If you have sugar free foods in your house, check them for this low-calorie sugar substitute. Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs. If ingested they can cause a drastic spike in insulin levels which can cause dangerously low blood sugar later on. Signs of xylitol poisoning includes vomiting at first, followed by fainting, seizures, weakness, staggering and even death.


If you’re ever concerned about your dog having consumed these foods, call the vet right away. The best way to avoiding accidental poisoning is to keep these foods locked away where your dog can’t reach them.

 

Dog Treats for Valentine’s Day

 

 

When we think of Valentine’s day, we think of a day of love that is filled with chocolate and flowers. And there is no reason not to include your canine companion with these dog treats for Valentine’s Day. After all, they have a piece of your heart too.

Remember to always keep your dogs away from candy, but making them there own special dog-friendly treats is a great way to include them.  Check out these easy to make recipes for your dog this year!

 

Heart Shapped Pup-cakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 cup of vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup of peanut butter (xylitol free)
  • 1 cup of shredded carrots or chopped broccoli
  • 2 1/2  tablespoons of honey
  • 1/2 cup of buttermilk
  • Cream cheese as frosting
  • Strawberry (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit  and grease your cupcake pan with butter or vegetable oil
  2. Mix the flour and baking powder in a small bowl
  3. Add the oil, peanut butter, and honey to the flour mixture
  4. Add the buttermilk in a small amount at a time and mix
  5. Add in the carrots or broccoli
  6. Place the mixture into the cupcake pan and bake until a toothpick can be cleanly removed from the cupcake
  7. Let the cupcakes cool for 20 minutes and remove them from the pan
  8. After the cupcakes are cooled mix up your frosting

For frosting:

  1. Apply softened cream cheese to ice the cupcake
  2. Optional: cut up strawberries and mix them into the cream cheese
  3. Spread the strawberry cream cheese on the cupcakes

No- Bake Peanut Butter Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of plain greek yogurt (make sure there are no dog toxic ingredients like artificial sweeteners)
  • 1 cup of peanut butter (dog safe)
  • 3 cups of rolled oats

Directions:

  1. Mix the yogurt and peanut butter to make a paste
  2. Add oats 1/4 a cup at a time and fully mix all the oats with the wet ingredients
  3. Scoop out tablespoon sized portions of the mixture and roll it into balls
  4. Place the balls on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and cool in the fridge for one hour

These treats can be stored for 7-9 days if kept in the refrigerator.


It’s true that many Valentine’s Day presents are chocolaty hazards to your dog. But, these delicious homemade treats are the perfect way to share the sweetness with your dog.

 

 

 

The Problems with Dog Kennels

 

Dog kennels can be a great place to make sure your dog stays safe while you are away on vacation or a business trip. However, there can be some serious dangers when it comes to kennels. There can be exposure to sickness, behavioral problems, and even trauma for dogs who spend too much time in a kennel.

 

Sickness found in Kennels 

Dogs in kennels are at risk for contracting a whole host of diseases and parasites. Respiratory conditions like Kennel Cough, and Canine Distemper, as well as parasites, fleas, ticks and mange, can easily be passed from dog to dog.

 

Behavioral Problems

There is a whole of of stress put on a dog while being kept in a kennel. The strange cage, loud noises, weird smalls can be a lot to take in. Dogs that have been in a shelter for long periods of time exhibit more problems. They can show signs of destructiveness, fearfulness, and tendency to flee. Of course the shorter the dog is in a kennel the less detrimental the effects, but most dogs experience stress on some level when in a kennel.

Kennel Syndrome

When dogs are left in a kennel or a shelter too long,  can actually experience periods of insanity. There was a study done at University of Bristol’s Anthrozoology Institute. It included videotapes of 30 police-trained German shepherds in their kennels after work. They found that the dogs showed definite signs of stress and even temporary mental illness. Keep in mind this is for dogs with jobs and a lot of interaction throughout the day. Imagine how bad it is for dogs that hardly ever get to leave their cages.

It’s likely that short trip to the kennel will not traumatize your dog. However, it’s important to check out a kennel before hand. Also, make sure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date. Lastly, if you’re adopting a dog in from a shelter, be kind and patient as they learn the ropes of life outside of the cage.

How to Keep Your Pet Safe in the Heat

 

August can be the hottest month of the year. To avoid heat stroke follow these tips and keep your pet safe during the dog days of summer.

Leave your dog at home if you’re running errands

Grabbing your keys can be an instant sign to your dog that it’s time for trip. It’s hard to say no to those pleading eyes, but for safety’s sake, leave them at home. Just a quick trip to the store can turn deadly for a dog left in the car.

As you can see, it does not take much for a car too hot. Even on cool days, it can quickly become dangerous. A simple delay in the store could be all it takes.

Limit exercise and outings on extremely hot days

You don’t have to be a hermit in the AC during the summer months, but it’s good to limit your dogs time outside. Some dogs can’t help but run and jump. When the temperature is rising, this could spell trouble and cause them to overheat. Taking care to limit the time they have in the sun will help stop overheating before it starts.

Avoid parks with a lot of asphalt

Enjoying a sunny day is great. When you take your dog out, avoid parks with tracks or lots of asphalt. Choose shady parks with dirt paths. The asphalt is hot and can easily burn their pads. You can also get some Dog Booties to protect their feet from hot roads and sand.

When you do go out bring plenty of water

Take a travel water bowl for your dog and plenty of water. To keep water cool on a hot day, fill up the bottle half way. Put the bottle on its side in the freezer. This will freeze the water on one side of the bottle, basically making a giant ice cube. Fill up the other side with water and you’ll have ice cold water for hours.

We are always here to help you if you need a pet sitter or dog walker during the day. Make sure to contact us! Your pets safety is our priority.

 

 

How do I Know if my Pet is Overheating?

 

As we prepare for the start of school it easy to think that summer is almost, but the hot weather still pounds down and the heatstroke is still very real.

So, how do you know if your pet is overheating? And even more importantly what do you do if it’s happening to your pet.

How do I spot overheating in my pet? 

  • Constant panting
  • Restlessness
  • Difficulty walking, weakness or wobbliness
  • Vomiting
  • Drooling
  • Collapse
  • Bright red, grey, bluish or purple gums
  • Seizures

 

What do I do if I realize that my pet is suffering from heatstroke?

  • Remove them from heat immediately, but be careful not to over cool your dog too quickly.  
  • Lay them on a cool surface, like a tile floor in an air conditioned room.
  • Use cold compresses on their neck, armpits, and groin areas.
  • Gently wet their paws and ears with a sponge or washcloth
  • Take their rectal temperature to give to the vet
  • Get your pet to ANY vet ASAP. Call your vet on the way, but at this moment the closest vet is the best vet.
  • If you are not at home alone, have one person find the closest vet near by while you do the above subtle cooling techniques.
  • Call your vet and let them know of the situation in case you need a follow up appointment.

Things you want to make sure NOT to do:

Do not use cold water or ice, over cooling can cause blood vessels to constrict which traps the excess heat in the body’s core and can end up doing more harm than good.

Do not force your dog to drink, give them a fresh bowl of water, but do not force it if they are not interested.

Do not leave them unattended or let them “sleep it off.” Similar to any other trauma, letting them sleep it off or giving the time to relax alone can be detrimental. They can easily end up worse off in this situation.

 

The dog days of summer may be upon on us, but it doesn’t mean that we have to suffer with over heating. Check back next week to find out how to keep your Fort Collins pet safe in the sun!

5 Ways to Decrease the Chances of Your Dog Being Hit by a Car

 

It can be the worst thing imaginable, but your dog getting hit by a car is a real possibility. This is especially true in the summer when activities are at their peak. So, what can you do to decrease the chances of your dog being hit by a car?

1. Get your dog spayed or neutered

Not only is spaying and neutering important for population control, it also helps keep your dog close to home. Once a dog reaches sexual maturity the likelihood of them trying to escape to seek out mates is greater. Studies have shown that sexual roaming can decrease almost 90% after your dog has been fixed.

2. Make sure you have your dog on the proper leash and collar during walks

If you have the wrong size collar or leash, it is possible that your dog could slip out or yank free from your grasp. It’s important you choose the right collar for your dog to make sure they stay safe.

3. Check fences for holes or weak spots

Summertime is notorious for storms and falling tree limbs can damage fences. Check your fence after storms for any damage that could allow your dog to escape. You never know when your dog may get spooked by a storm or fireworks and try to hightail it out of the yard.

4. Teach your dog safety commands

Teaching your dog commands like “come” or “stay” are the most important commands they need.  This can help avoid them running out of the door or across the street to catch a squirrel or rabbit.

5. Go over dog safety techniques with the whole family

Summer can be a busy time for your front door. With cookouts and the kid’s being out of school, it is likely that your home sees more guests than ever during the summer months. Make sure everyone in the home knows some basic safety tips, like “The Doggy Doorknob Rule.” That’s when all members of the family and guests make sure to check for the dog before turning the doorknob. This will help avoid them escaping when people are coming in and out.

 

Keeping our pets safe is a main priority and anything you can do to decrease the chances of your dog being hit by a car is key. Don’t forget to read our blog on How to Teach Your Dog to Cross the Street for even more safety tips to keep your dog safe while enjoy the sunny days of summer! 

 

How to Teach Your Dog to Cross the Street

 

It’s summer time and most of us are out and about, enjoying the nice weather. Even if you’re not big on the outdoors, it’s easy to still find yourself walking your dog through the neighborhood more now than ever. But making sure your dog is safe while walking around busy streets is imperative. So, just how do you ensure your dog’s safety and enjoy a nice sunny day where you have to cross the street a time or two?

  • The best method is to teach them to sit before crossing a road

The most effective way is to start training before they are 16 weeks of age. Although, you can train them at any time, but earlier is always better. Take them for walks and cross the street while implementing sit commands and giving treats. This will give them positive reinforcement for stopping and sitting before they cross the road.

  • The next best is to teach them to go “down” when you command if you see a car coming

If the sit command isn’t going so well, you can try and teach them to stop and lay down whenever you see a car coming. Telling them to go down will help avoid them running out into traffic after a squirrel or whatever it is that has his attention.

With both of these techniques it’s good to practice at home and out on the road when it is safe. Using treats and praise will go along way in likelihood of them following the commands when needed most.

 

Also, make sure to check out this video from eHow.com on how to cross the street safely.

As pet parents we all want to protect our dogs as much as possible and when you have a spirited pup on your hands, that can be kind of difficult. However, you can teach them a few commands that can help keep them safe when you have to cross the street.

All of our dog walkers are trained in how to safely cross the street with pets, so if you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us and we would be happy to help show you a few tips.

How Do I Keep My Dog Safe on the 4th of July?

It’s almost time for that beautiful American celebration where households all around the nation fire up the grill, stock up the fireworks and pick out a watermelon. Most of us love the chance to relax with our loved ones and enjoy an extra day off work while celebrating how great it is to live in the USA. However, it’s not always the safest or greatest time of year for our pets. So, make sure you remember these safety tips to keep your dog safe of the 4th of July.

Don’t bring them to a large party or fireworks display

If you’re going to a good friend or family members BBQ where you dog is very comfortable and it won’t be too loud, then by all means include them in the celebrations. If you’re going to an unfamiliar place for your dog with lots of food and festivities it’s best to leave them at home. The same goes for any type of firework displays, even if they are on your own block. Your dog will not like or appreciate being included for this event, so just leave them at home where they are much more comfortable.

Set them up a safe and quiet area at home

You may have an especially active firework-loving neighborhood and if so, make sure your dog is as far removed from the commotion as possible. This is can also be helpful for if you’re having a BBQ or party at your house. They can easily get out in the shuffle of guests, get into the trash, or even worse, get into alcoholic or poisonous substances while everyone preoccupied.

Put them in a bedroom or laundry room (with toxic items placed high on shelves) and turn on some ambient noise like a soft radio or TV.  Include their favorite toys and bed with some treats and water. This will help keep them safe and calm while the festivities can continue without worry.

DO NOT TIE THEM OR LEAVE THEM IN A FENCED BACKYARD

Once the fireworks go off your dog can panic leading them to try to jump a fence or even get tied up and choke on their leash.

Update ID’s and microchips

This is a good time of year to get new collars and tags and to make sure that their microchips are up to date just in case they do happen to get out during the celebrations. If your dog happens to get out during the party, once the fireworks start you never know how far away they could run. It’s important to make sure they can be ID’d and brought home ASAP.

Keeping your dog safe on the 4th of July isn’t too hard, just follow these few simple steps to help make them comfortable while you relax and enjoy your family and friends.

Use calming items like Thundershirts and smoothing music

If you know your dog is nervous around loud noises, consider some preventative measurements. Thundershirts are like wraps that make your dog feel secure. They work for around half of dogs. Smoothing music, or television may help drown out some of the noise.