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Getting a Dog – Complete Checklist for New Dog Owners

 

Bringing a new dog into the family is a very exciting time. Becoming a pet parent is rewarding, but also full of responsibility. The best way to prepare for your new dog is to have a checklist to lay the groundwork for your new addition.

 

Download the Complete Preparing for a New Dog  Checklist

Four Important Considerations:

1. Time: It is very important to think about how much time you’ll honestly be able to give your new pet.

  • At the very least dogs need to be fed 2-3 times a day and walked at least once a day.
  • Dogs with more energy may need even more time for proper exercise and stimulation.
  • Healthy pets should get at least an hour or day of direct attention, even if it’s just cuddling.
  • Don’t forget to add in time for grooming, hygiene, and appointments.

2. Costs: You want to make sure that you can always care for your vet. The best way is to create a budget for a new dog before you bring them home.

  • Does your new pet need to be spayed or neutered?
  • Is there an adoption fee that needs to be paid?
  • Monthly expenses such as food, pet sitting or new supplies
  • Routine veterinary care
  • Microchipping
  • Grooming equipment and supplies
  • Will you want to sign them up for training classes?
  • Beds and toys
  • Spare supplies

3. Age & Size: These are also two important factors in getting a new dog.

  • Puppies take far more time and training
  • Is your home accommodating to a large dog or would it be better suited for a small dog?
  • Do you have another pet to consider when deciding on what type of dog to get?
  • Can a large pet travel with you comfortably?

4. Lifestyle and relationship: Another big consideration is how your lifestyles will blend and the relationship you want to to have with your new canine companion. 

  • Are you active and want to bring your dog on hikes and camping trips?
  • Will your work and social life affect your ability to spend time and care for your pet?
  • Do you want a pet that will travel with you?
  • Do you have children that need a reliable and safe dog?
  • Is your new dog going to be your best friend or more of an independent roommate?

 

Shopping Checklist:

  • Age appropriate food
  • Water and food bowls
  • Collar
  • Leash
  • ID tags (make sure your phone number is on it)
  • Dog carrier or crate
  • Doggy shampoo and brush
  • Super absorbent paper towels
  • Various types of toys
  • Blanket
  • Dog toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Plastic baggies for waste

 

Getting a new dog awesome. Once you have considered all the important factors and gotten their supplies, the only thing left to do is have fun with your new family member!

Download the Complete Preparing for a New Dog  Checklist

Is Easter Egg Dye Bad For My Dog?

 

Easter will be here in just a few short weeks. The stores are full of pastel candy, bunnies and Easter eggs. And if you’re dyeing eggs this year, you may be wondering if the dye is bad for your dog.  The simple answer is no, common Easter Egg dye is not bad for your dog. In fact, most dyes used for Easter eggs are non toxic.

That means, if your dog gets a hold of a rogue Easter egg one day, he should be just fine, as long as it has been cooked.  Raw eggs may contain salmonella and even though there aren’t many documented health scares connected to raw eggs, it’s always a good idea to play it safe.

 

Safe Dyes To Look For:

Dyeing kits such as PAAS are commonly found at the store and are non toxic.  However, if you are still feeling uneasy about using a store bought kit, you can use regular food coloring instead. It is safe to ingest and will color the eggs. However, some feel that food coloring or all-natural dyes don’t have the same “pop” of color that the traditional kits have. But pastels are in for Easter, so if you’re not comfortable with the kit, definitely go for the food coloring. 

 

Easter Egg Dye Watch Out For:

Ukrainian Egg Dyes or Pysanky Kits are for elaborately decorated and non-edible eggs.  These eggs are dyed raw and painted with wax and powdered dyes. So, if you do decide to decorate your eggs in this style, make sure to keep them away from your pets.

 

Easter is a time to celebrate with the family. It’s not a time to worry if your dog gets into the Easter egg basket  (as long as there’s no chocolate in there).  Eating an egg with dye on it should be no problem. As long as there are no special dietary factors that come into play that is. Now, it may change the color of their poop or even give them some gas.  But overall they will be just fine.

8 Tips for Preparing Your Home for a Pet Sitter

Your vacation is planned, your pet sitting appointment is booked, you are all packed, now what?  There are few steps you can take to make life much easier for your pet sitter by preparing your home for a pet sitter.

Wet Noses’ Top 8 Tips for Preparing Your Home for a Pet Sitter

1)   Secure your home.

Make sure all of your doors, windows, and gates are locked.

2)  Put all of your pet supplies in a central location.

We don’t mind going into a cabinet or two but try not to send your sitter digging through 3 rooms two find the supplies they need.

3)  Make sure all medication is in a cabinet out of animal reach.

Your pup may be great normally but when he is left alone for a couple days in a row he might go exploring.

4)  Verify that all of your information for your pet sitter is correct.

At Wet Noses Pet Sitting we use an online system that should be updated regularly, but whatever system your sitter uses should be updated.  This should include all of your pet’s care details, house information, plant watering, emergency contacts, garage code and the alarm code.

pet sitter

 

5) Update your information

Make sure your sitter has updated information to contact you in case of an emergency.  If you will not be reachable via your regular phone leave the information for your travel plans, hotel numbers, travel agent, etc.

6) Think about where you want your pet to have access

Close off any rooms you do not want your pets to have access to while you are gone.  Also, change lights and blinds in those rooms to the way you want them to stay.  If you want them changed to be sure to leave that information for your sitter.

7)  Get extra supplies!

Inevitably if you only leave enough food for your trip then you will be delayed by weather.  Supply your home as if will be gone a few days longer than you are planning. In case you’re delayed you’re pet will plenty of supplies.

8) Leave your pet sitter any important notes

If there are any favorite hiding spots for your cat, underlying illnesses for your dog, toilets that leak or doors that stick, let your sitter know!  Think of the unusual parts of your home and your pets and assume your sitter will run into the same problem.

Now that you’ve finished preparing your home for a pet sitter, you can relax and enjoy your trip!  Nothing makes a pet sitter happier than to know you had a great time away while they enjoyed spending time with your fur kids.


Black Friday Shopping for Your Pets

It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is almost here. Once our bellies are full, it is time to start thinking about the biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday. After all, it is the perfect time to find the most affordable presents for our loved ones. And we can’t forget about our furry family members this holiday season. There are a lot of great Black Friday deals just for them. We’ve compiled a great list of both online and in-store deals to help you navigate the sales.


Pet Smart

Store Hours – Offine: 7AM Friday & Online: 12AM Friday

black friday

Photo from PetSmart.com


Petco

Store Hours: TBD

Black Friday

Photo from Petco.com


Wal-Mart

Store Hours – Time varies by location

Black Friday

Photo from Walmart.com

 


Costco

Store Hours – Costco is closed on Thanksgiving Day and will open at 9 a.m. on Black Friday.

Black Friday

Photo from BestBlackFriday.com


After you know where to shop you need to find out what you want to get your best four-legged friend.

 

Here are the top 5 products that your pet is sure to love:

 

  1. The PetCube:  An interactive Wi-Fi camera that lets you watch, talk to, and play with your pets throughout the day via your smartphone.
  2. Buck Bone Organics Antler ChewsFEEL GOOD ABOUT GIVING YOUR DOG A HEALTHY ALL NATURAL TREAT – Our top Grade A Elk Antler are full of calcium, phosphorus, manganese and zinc ~ no odor, no mess, gluten-free, and great for indoors or outdoors.
  3. Puzzle Food Toys: Give your pet a meal or a treat while also giving them the added benefit of physical and mental stimulation. They are sure to love solving the “puzzle” and getting yummy treats for it.
  4. Water Fountain Bowl: Keep your pet’s water fresh with flowing right from there own bowl. The filtration and constantly running water helps guard against bacteria growth. That means your pet always gets a fresh drink of water.
  5. 2-in-1 Pet Glove: Grooming Tool + Furniture Pet Hair Remover Mitt: Fight shedding with the glove that easily removes loose pet hair and tangles so no fur goes flying. Plus the glove’s velour side effectively cleans fur from furniture & carpets.

 

With all these deals and ideas, you are sure to find the perfect present for your pet this holiday season!

 

Should I Let My Kid Bring our Pet to Show and Tell?

 

One of the most exciting and fun days in school for younger students is Show and Tell Day. Children everywhere think about bringing their favorite things in life to show everyone. Who is more special in our kid’s lives than the family pet? That’s why every year tons of students ask if they can bring your pet to show and tell. And you may wonder, can they? Is it a good idea?

Well, that can depend on a few different factors. Here are a few things that you should consider.

Are there any classroom restrictions?show and tell

One of the biggest problems with bringing your pet to class is that some people may allergic. Just like peanut butter, depending on the pet and classroom, there could be allergies. Check with the teacher to make sure animals are allowed, if any.

How friendly is your pet?

Of course, you want to make sure that your pet is friendly. However, even if they are friendly at home, it doesn’t mean that they are friendly everywhere. Assess your pet’s threshold for strangers before you decided it is a good idea to bring them into the classroom. Make sure to consider how they interact with children especially. A dog may like adults, but some tend to get confused and more defensive around the small, loud, unpredictable humans.

Is transportation easy and stress-free?

Some pets are easy to transport than others. Even if you get the go ahead to bring your dog or cat that easily hop into cars and carriers, some of us don’t have conventional animals. For example, my son loves our Leopard Gecko, but taking her out of her terrarium and into a classroom just seems terrible. Not only do you have to either take a giant tank or a create a makeshift environment, it can be stressful for them.


When it comes down to it, check with your child’s teacher and school administrators. Then think about how easy it will be to transport your pet and how well they will adapt to the situation. If it doesn’t work out, make some other suggestions or print out pictures or make a craft. You can easily make collages, paper mache replicas, or just bring in photo albums of your beloved pets without all of the fuss and stress.

Have you ever let your kid take a pet to show and tell? Let us know how it went in the comments below!

 

How to Keep Your Dog Busy When the Kids Go Back to School

 

It’s been a nice long summer of cuddles in the morning and playing in the afternoon. The home has been bustling with activity while the kids are out of school. And typically, most of our dogs love all of the extra attention they get during this time. That’s why it can be hard for them to adjust when it’s time for the kids to go back to school.

back to schoolGet them a few new toys dog

Help your dog get over the school day slump with new activities to keep them occupied.

  • Puzzle toys are great at keeping dog’s entertained. Not only do they challenge their brains for a reward, they also stay busy for a while as well. After playing with it, they feel satisfied from play and getting a treat
  • Dog chews will help save your shoes and furniture if your dog is really feeling the back to school blues. Often our dogs find themselves chewing when they are stressed or bored. Giving them new chews can help them ease their anxiety and boredom.
  • Tug Poles are a fun way to interact with your dog. They look similar to the familiar cat fishing pole toy, but a little tougher and more durable. Take some time each to hop it around and play with your dog to put back some fun in their day.
  • Ball launchers are also a great way to keep your dog busy when the kids go back to school. Whether it’s automatic or the chuck-it launcher, dogs love playing ball.

 

Tire them out with exercise

You won’t have to worry about your dog being bored if they are too pooped to play. Wear them out a good walk or a vigorous play session before you leave or have to start your chores. They’ll happily nap for a little while, then you can get your daily tasks completed without them begging for attention.

Turn on TV or Radio

It can get too quiet during the day, especially being used to a busy household. Help your dog through the quiet times by having the TV or radio play on low when you’re not at home. If you’re going to be gone a lot of the day, set a time so it cuts on or off as needed. They may not like it on all day, but a little ambient noise can go a long way.

Hire a dog walker

Another great way to keep your dog busy during the quiet days of the school season is by hiring a dog walker. They’ll come check on your pet, give them some TLC and a good walk. This will give them much needed attention and exercise, helping them settled down for a little while until you and the kids return home.

 

Changes in our routines and missing loved ones that are usually there can be stressful for our dogs. That’s why it good to put a little extra effort into keeping them busy during the transition. And don’t forget to call us for dog walking and pet sitting services! We’d love to help keep your dog company when the kids go back to school.

 

 

 

 

How to Prevent Hairballs in Cats

 

If you’ve owned a cat for any amount of time then you’ve probably had the awful experience of hairballs. There is no denying that they are pretty gross, a little troubling and also, totally natural for cats.

What causes them?

hairballsCats have tongues that are full of tiny hook-like growths, that’s why they feel rough when they like you. This tiny hooks are not much unlike soft fingernails because they are both made of keratin. When grooming, these hooks catch loose and dead fur which is then swallowed. Most of it passes through the digestive system without a problem.

However, some of the hair will build up in their stomachs. When too much fur has accumulated, your cat will often start to wretch and gag, eventually vomiting up the hairball. Since it has to pass through the esophagus, it usually doesn’t actually look like a “ball.”

They may also act lethargic, have a decreased appetite as well as constipation or diarrhea. Usually once they pass the hairball they are fine. But if you feel that something is wrong, do not hesitate to contact your vet.

Five ways you can help your cat at home:

  1. Grooming is a key to eliminating the dead hair that builds up in their coats. When you remove it, they can’t swallow it. If they seem to have a lot of hairballs, try adding a dab of Alberto VO5 Conditioning Hairdressing to you the brush to help the coat.
  2. Adding oily fish to their diet also helps. A can of sardines or a tuna canned in oil about once a month can aid in lubricating their digestive system.
  3. Mix in a tablespoon or two of canned pumpkin to their food every day. Just make sure to get pure pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling.
  4. Another add in on their food is oil. Mix in a tablespoon about once a week of olive oil or corn oil to keep the hairballs moving through.
  5. Get hairball formulated cat food. This brand of food can help fight against shedding and aid in digestion. This type of food is oil based and is high in fiber, helping hairballs not form in the first place.

 

Depending on your cat’s coat and age, you may see more or less frequent hairballs. But if you ever think that they are having too many or strange looking hairballs, make sure to contact your vet about your concerns.

5 Questions to Ask Your Vet at Your Next Visit

 

When you’re getting ready for your yearly physical, you probably have a few questions prepared for your doctor. And it’s smart to have them prepared ahead of time. Because if you’re like me, by time you’re in the back room, chances are you’ll forget to ask at least one thing you were concerned about.

The same should go for your pet at their regular wellness checks as well. There are just as many, if not more distractions at the vet. Sometimes that leaves you floundering for words and just hoping to get out unscathed.

Having a few good questions jotted down for easy reference will go a long way in making you get the most out of your pet’s vet visit.

1. Is my pet overweight?

Being on top of your pet’s weight is important. According to the Association for Pet Obesity and Prevention, more than half of the dogs and cats are overweight in the U.S. Even though we are almost conditioned to think “a fat pet is a happy pet,” that’s not true. Obesity sets them up for a whole slew of complications such as, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and more.

2. What is the best food for my pet?

This question almost goes hand in hand with the weight question, but it is still beneficial for average weight pets as well. Not all pet food is created equal and some foods have fatty fillers and sub-par ingredients. Tell your vet what food you regularly feed your pet. Also, as they age dietary needs can change. Ask them what they feel is an appropriate diet for them considering their age and weight.

3. Do you have any recommendations for flea/tick meds?

Flea and ticks are not just a problem for the spring and summer. They can actually be a threat all year round. More than just a nuisance, they can transmit deadly diseases too. Depending on the time of year and your pet’s health in general, your vet may have a better way of protecting your pet.

4.Does my pet need a dental cleaning?

Often forgotten, but still very important is dental health. Recent surveys state that an estimated 80% of adult dogs and 70% of adult cats suffer from a least some degree of periodontal disease. If dental hygiene is ignored too long, it can result serious health issues with the liver, kidney, heart. Your vet should have some easy and painless ways to help.

5. Is this normal?

This is the general behavior or health question to ask your vet. It’s whatever may concern you about your pet. Like do they have a quirky behavior, a weird eating/sleeping habit? Or you may be worried about lumps or bumps on their skin. Reserve this question to fit what concerns you about your pet specifically.


A little bit of planning goes a long way in making sure you get all the answers you need. Doctors and vet visits are stressful enough as it is, no need to add stress to it by being unprepared.

Do you have any additional questions you like to ask your vet? Let us know in the comments!

Bulldogs are Beautiful Day

 

We know that we don’t really need a special day to appreciate the beauty of bulldogs, but why not take the to celebrate them anyway, right?!  With their short little legs and adorable smushed faces and sturdy physique, they are truly a breed of their own.

 

Early history:

Early Bulldogs have a bit of an interesting and brutal history. Butchers used to use dogs to control control livestock. This can be traced back to the 5th century in England and a breed called the Alaunt. Around the 15th century, bulldogs were used for around farms for catching horses, cattle, and boars. Unfortunately, bulldogs were also used in the barbaric “sport” called bull-baiting, in which trained dogs would latch onto a tethered bull’s nose and not let go until the dog had pulled the bull to the ground or the bull had killed the dog (source). And, thankfully this was finally banned in 1835.

The newer breed:

Well, after the brutality was finally banned Bulldogs found their place in the world. They were still used for herding in the US and Germany and were being bred with smaller dogs, like pugs in England. They slowly made a huge comeback becoming a wildly popular companion and mascot for Universities like Georgia State University and Gonzaga University.

 

Temperament & Training:

Don’t let their grumpy face and stout build fool you. Bulldog are generally they are an easy going breed that gets along with people, other pets and even children. They aren’t big on barking and love to sleep. The AKC Standard says the disposition of the English Bulldog is usually “calm, courageous, and friendly; dignified but amusing.” They are also ranked at the 4th most popular breed according to the AKC.

Even though bulldogs may have a reputation for being stubborn, but that doesn’t mean that they are untrainable. With patience and consistency they can easily be trained just like any other dog. The sooner you can bond with and start to train your bulldog the better.

 


Cute Famous Bulldogs:

My personal favorite is Meatball, Adam Sandler’s bulldog. I may be a little biased because I am a huge fan. Plus, he sent me an autograph picture after I sent him a Valentine’s Day card back in 1996. But here he is, Meatball, the adorable bulldog!

bulldogs

Photo from Adam Sandler


And of course, Ice T and Coco’s beloved Bulldogs Spartacus (RIP) and Maximus. They are so cute with baby Chanel!

bulldogs

Photo from ET


Tillman, who is a skateboarding English Bulldog that happens to hold the Guinness World Record for the fastest 100-meter on a skateboard by a dog. And when Tillman appeared on the show, Greatest American Dog, and he rode the Natural Balance float in the Rose Parade in 2009. And well, that is pretty amazing!

Bulldogs

Photo from Bulldogs World

And no Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day post would be complete without a hilarious YouTube video of them playing around and being silly…enjoy!

Do you have a bulldog? If so, make sure to share your pictures with us! Post on our Facebook page and Twitter, let us know your loves!

Doggy Daycare VS Dog Walker – What’s the Best for Your Pet?

 

We know that it is hard to be away from your pet all day. Whether it’s weekdays at work or day trips, leaving them behind can leave you worried. And there are a lot of different options for pet care during the day, it can be hard to know which is best. Two of the most popular options are dog daycare and dog walking. Here are the differences that you need to know before you chose what’s best for your pet.

 

Dog Daycare

This is a short term kennel for your dog. Doggy daycare is not much different than children’s day care. Owner’s drop off their pets on their way to work or out for the day. Then, you pick your dog back up at the end of the day on the way home.

Best for dogs who:

  • Love to socialize
  • Need a lot of stimulation during the day
  • Are healthy and have all of their shots

If it’s a convenient location for you to drop off and pick up, then this could be a good option. Especially, if you have a large dog that wants to play and socialize all day long. Since your dog will be interacting with other canines, it’s important that they have all of their shots. But for puppies, anxious or sickly dogs, it may not be the best choice.

Dog Walking

Dog walkers are great because they come straight to your home. No need to wrangle your pet in the car or pack a bag of treats and toys for them. Basically a pet sitter can come once or twice (AM and PM) during the day while you are gone. They will play with your dog, take them for a walk to check the “P-Mail,” plus feed them and give them a little cuddle time.

Best for dogs who:

  • Have anxiety
  • Gets car sick
  • Are sick or injured

While dog walking can be best for the dogs listed above, it is actually is a great option for all pets. Your pet gets the comfort of their home and neighborhood.

If you’re looking to find out more about dog walking and pet sitting or schedule services, make sure to give us a call!