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

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2015

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Best Friends Pet Care : The Dog Dish

Tag Archives: winter

Grooming to Keep your Pet Healthy and Comfortable During the Winter Months

Winter is hard on skin – for humans and for our pets. Indoor heat and cold arid air outside make skin dry and itchy. Many owners are unsure about the best way to keep their pets comfortable in winter. The solution is to keep up regular grooming schedules.

Following are answers to some of the most often-asked questions about winter skin care.

Q.  Should pets be bathed during the winter?

A. Yes!  A clean pet is a healthy pet. Regular shampooing and brushing during the winter months keep the skin and coat healthy. Follow the shampoo with a conditioning and moisturizing rinse. The drying process is key, because leaving dampness at skin level can cause problems. A short coat might be fine with just a vigorous toweling, but longer hair needs separating with comb or brush and plenty of airflow. Be very careful with your home hair dryer: use the lowest heat setting and keep it moving to prevent burns. (Professional groomers are equipped with high volume, low heat machines to dry quickly and safely.)

Q. Should I leave my pet’s hair long in winter to keep him warm?

A. If you decide to leave the coat longer, be prepared to brush often to prevent matting. Tangles form fast and trap moisture, a major cause of skin problems. Matted hair is not comfy and warm, but air trapped in layers of a well-brushed coat is effective insulation.

Maintain the same haircut schedule year round for breeds that require regular trimming. Your groomer can keep the style longer than in the summer, but allowing hair to “grow in” all winter can necessitate a drastic ‘short shave’ in spring.

If you’re concerned about your pet being cold when he’s outdoors, a sweater or fleece coat is a better option than letting his coat grow long and unruly.

Q.  My dog seems to itch a lot more during the winter. What can I do?

A.  With windows closed and heaters on, low humidity indoors will dry pet’s skin. Counteract this with regular brushing to stimulate and spreads the natural oils.

Medicated shampoos and soothing moisturizing conditioners help if your pet’s skin seems itchy or scaly. Consult a professional groomer or veterinarian for recommendations. Nutrition is also important for skin health; omega oils in food or as a supplement  is good.

Q.  Why do my pets nails seem grow faster in the winter?

A.  When dogs have fewer hours of exercise, nails can become overgrown because they are not being worn down with normal activity. Claws may need more frequent attention during the winter months. The ideal time is after the shampoo, while soft. Nails should  barely touch the ground when the dog is standing. While clipping, check for hair between the pads that form uncomfortable lumps, and trap snow and ice.

House pets need regular grooming for health and hygiene. Don’t skip tasks – like nail clipping and tangle removal – just because they are difficult. If there are things you cannot or do not want to undertake yourself, seek the help of a professional. Your pet will be happier and more comfortable.

 

Tags: Grooming, Pet advice, Winter

Best Friends Angel Tree Campaign Raises $25,000 for Homeless Animals

Best Friends Total Pet Care and it animal-loving clients across the country showed their concern for homeless dogs and cats this recent holiday season by donating more than $25,000 worth in cash and supplies to the company’s 14th annual Animal Angel Tree campaign.

All donations will be used to help the homeless pets in the care of over 75 animal shelters and rescues. Each of those organizations has provided a “wish list” of items needed and Best Friends staff will be using the cash to purchase those items – from food and treats, to leashes and collars, to crates and cat trees. Beneficiaries range from large shelters like Chicago Canine Rescue and Northeast Animal Shelter, to small rescue groups like Morris Animal Refuge of Philadelphia, PA, and Buddy Dog Humane Society of Sudbury, MA.

“We are thrilled with the response of our clients and friends to this year’s Angel Tree campaign,” said Mollie Hoff, Chief Operating Officer of the Best Friends Total Pet Care Group.

“Since the Angel Tree program began in 2000, we’ve donated hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of food, toys and pet care supplies to more than 100 different shelters and rescues across the U.S. We know our program makes a difference in the lives of many pets in need.”

The Angel Tree campaign started in November and ended the first week in January. Donations will be delivered to the shelters and rescue this month.

Best Friends Total Pet Care is a leader in the pet care services industry, operating 40 pet care centers and 14 veterinary hospitals in 18 states.

Tags: Best friends news, Cats, Dogs, Donations, Holidays, Winter

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
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