Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish
Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish
Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish

Tag Archives: pet health

Turn Back the Clocks, but Don’t Cut Back on Exercise

When we turn back the clocks, it can be tempting to turn down the outdoor time with our pets. Shorter days and cooler weather make being outdoors less appealing. But, cutting back on outdoor exercise time can be a problem for our pets – especially for high-energy dogs in need of lots of active play.

In fact, insufficient exercise is a leading cause of problem behaviors – from chewing on the furniture, to howling, to having “accidents” in the house. To avoid these problems, Best Friends trainers recommend keeping your pet active all season long.

Go for a walk. Put on a warm jacket and brave the cold. A daily walk or run will allow your pet to release excess energy – and it’s also good for you. (If your daily excursion is after dark, be sure to wear reflective clothing.) If you have children, the daily walk to and from the school bus is a great opportunity for your dog to get some exercise.

Get out and play. Your children will also enjoy rolling around in the autumn leave — or winter snow — with a high-energy friend.

Join a meet-up group. Dog owner meet-up groups are popping up all over the country, and many schedule indoor sessions during the winter months. It’s a great opportunity for your dog to enjoy some active canine play, while you socialize with other dog lovers. Go to MeetUp.com and put in your zip code to find sessions near you.

Send your dog to camp. A great outlet for high-energy dogs is a program like day camp. Dogs exercise and socialize with other dogs in a safe, supervised environment. In addition to giving them exercise, these programs actually improve social skills while diminishing negative behaviors at home. To see if your local Best Friends offers a day camp program, go to the Locations page on our website.

Tags: Activity, Doggy daycamp, Exercise, Pet advice, Pet health, Pet info, Tips, Winter

Keep Pets Cool during the Dog Days of Summer

The dog days of summer are here and we humans aren’t the only ones suffering.  For our canine best friends, long hot summer days in a house without air conditioning or a backyard without shade can be misery.

All pets – even those that spend a lot of time outdoors — are potential victims of summer heat.  Because dogs and cats don’t sweat, they don’t have an efficient way to cool themselves down.  That’s why heat exhaustion is one of the most common ailments to affecting pets during the summer months.

It’s important that we take steps to keep our pets cool during summer’s hottest days.  Best Friends experts offer the following tips:

  • Be sure your dog or cat has shade and plenty of cool water.
  • Exercise your pet during the coolest times of day – early in the morning or after the sun goes down.
  • If your pet enjoys water, provide a sprinkler or wading pool on hot days.
  • If your cat or dog has a white or light-colored coat or has exposed skin, be careful of sunburn.  Check with your veterinarian about using a sunscreen on your pet.
  • NEVER leave any pet in a car in the heat.   On an 80-degree day, the temperature inside a car can rapidly increase to 120 degrees – even with the windows open.

If you see signs of heat stress in your pet — excess panting, reddening of the area around the mouth and nose, and an increased heart rate – get him out of the heat immediately.  Cool him down with cool, not icy cold, water.  If symptoms persist, see your veterinarian.

On very hot days, it’s best to keep pets indoors – in the air conditioning or near a fan.  If that’s not possible, consider bringing your dog to doggy day camp, where he can spend the day in the air conditioning, playing with other canines under the watchful eye of trained counselors.  You’ll appreciate not having to take him for exercise in the summer heat when you get home!

Tags: Dog safety, Doggy daycamp, Dogs, Pet advice, Pet health, Pet info

Want to live longer? Get a pet!

The medical community has long stated that owning a pet will reduce stress in your life. That comes as no surprise to us! Just last week, the American Heart association came out with a report stating that pet owners actually live longer than non pet owners!

In this report the American Heart Association released the findings of a study which reveal that having a pet might lower your risk of heart disease. So what are you waiting for?

Tags: Activity, Cats, Doggy daycamp, Dogs, Exercise, Pet advice, Pet health, Pets, Weight
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