Archive for May, 2016
With summer being upon us and the temperatures continuing to rise, we need to be extra diligent in making sure our pups stay cool and hydrated! Earlier this week, we had a blog about tricks and tips for keeping your dog cool and one of those tricks was using frozen treats. Now for those feeling extra adventurous, skip the store bought frozen treats and make your own with these seven recipes, I guarantee you, your pup will be overjoyed!
1. Peanut Butter & Apple Pupsicles:
2 containers (6 oz. each) plain yogurt
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons peanut butter
1/3 cup regular applesauce (or a 4 oz. snack size portion)
Stir together all ingredients in a mixing bowl with a spoon until well combined. Divide mixture into small paper or plastic cups (or ice cube trays for bite-sized treats) and freeze for about 3-4 hours. Loosen treat by holding cup under warm water from the faucet and serve.
2. Frozen Yogurt & Berry Bones:
1/2 cup whole Blueberries
1 cup chopped Strawberries
1 cup plain Yogurt
1. Combine all ingredients until mixed.
2. Pour into molds (we used bone shaped, but any will do!) and freeze for at least 4 to 5 hours before serving.
3. Frozen Star Shaped Treats:
1 cup water
1/4 cup blueberries
Rinse fruit and cut stems off the strawberries. Mix 1/2 cup water along with all the strawberries in a blender until liquefied. Repeat with the blueberries. Pour mixture into star shaped ice cube trays (you can always use regular ice cube trays, but the ones with shapes are so cute!) Let freeze 2-4 hours at least.
4. PB&J Pops:
1/4 cup Peanut Butter
2 cups Strawberries, chopped (frozen or fresh)
1/2 cup Blueberries (frozen or fresh)
1 3/4 cup plain Yogurt, divided
4 Rawhide Sticks
1/4 cup Peanut Butter
3/4 cup plain Yogurt
Add peanut butter and yogurt to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth
2 cups Strawberries, chopped
1/4 cup plain Yogurt
Add strawberries and yogurt to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth
1/2 cup Blueberries
3/4 cup plain Yogurt
Mix blueberries and yogurt
1. Pour an inch or so of your first layer mixture into the bottom of each cup.
2. Allow to freeze for 30 minutes, and insert your rawhide stick.
3. Repeat pouring the layers, allowing them to set 30 minutes in between, until they are all used.
4. Freeze for 8 hours to allow them to fully set.
5. Run warm water around the mold to remove the popsicle.
Makes 4 popsicles.
5. Frozen Peanut Butter & Yogurt Heart Treats:
Plain organic Greek yogurt
Natural peanut butter
Heart shaped ice cube tray
Spoon a small amount of peanut butter into the base of the ice tray. You can heat up the peanut butter first to make it easier (and not so messy) to spoon in. The more you add, the thicker the top layer on the treats will appear. Next up, dollop heaping spoonfuls of the yogurt to cover the peanut butter in each mold. Press yogurt down into the molds using the back of your spoon to make sure they’re packed. This will help seal the peanut butter and yogurt together in the final treat. You can even gently “drop” the tray a few times in order to encourage further settling. If you have excess yogurt in any of the molds, gently scoop away until level with mold and pop into the freezer for at least 4 hours and then pop out of tray for a cool summer treat!
As with anything that your dog consumes, make sure you supervise after you give them one of these treats to make sure your pup doesn’t react badly to them. If your pup is sensitive to certain foods or is on a special diet, double check with your vet before making any treats that might not be the best thing for them. And if you end up making some and they are a hit, please let us know! Thanks so much for taking the time to read our blog, we really appreciate it!
Summer is an awesome time for long walks, beach runs and enjoying the outdoors with your furry friend. But while we are pretty clued up on the sun screen and shades combo when it comes to our hooman sun safety, it’s also important that we take care of our pup’s needs when making the most of the weather. So here’s our tips for how to help your pooch beat the heat.
1. Take fresh water on walks
Always take a cold bottle of water along with you on walks. Keeping well hyrdrated is essential on a hot day, so fresh water should be in plentiful supply. If your dog is panting or seems sluggish, make sure to take regular breaks in a shaded space and give your pooch a drink. Avoid giving your pup too much exercise when the heat is high as overdoing it is a common cause of heatstroke.
2. Have your dog’s fur groomed
Just like we tend to opt for more manageable hair styles in the summer months, our pooches need a restyle too. A dog’s undercoat is part of their natural cooling system, but if not properly groomed it can become matted and prevent airflow across your dog’s skin. Remember not to have their fur completely removed, though, as the bare skin could burn in the sun.
3. Never leave your dog in a parked car
Leaving a pet in a car in warm weather is illegal in many states, and it’s easy to see why. The temperature rises fast and the enclosed space could lead your pooch to panic. If travelling in a car with your dog, make sure to use your air-conditioning or leave the windows open to get in as much fresh air as possible.
4. Give cold treats
One of our favorite ways to cool off in the sun is to snack on ice cream, and your pup doesn’t have to miss out on the fun. Chilled or frozen treats are a fun surprise for dogs and can help relieve boredom as well as conquer the heat.
5. Avoid midday walks
Try to stick to the coolness of morning and evening walks when the weather is hot, letting your pup spend the hottest part of the day indoors. Choose shaded routes where the pavement will be a lot more comfortable on their paws and the heat less intense. If your dog will be outside in a garden during this part of the day, be sure to provide a covered porch space or kennel for your pooch to take a break from the heat.
6. Wet your pup’s feet
Dogs tend to cool themselves from the bottom upwards, so wetting their feet will help control their temperature. You could invest in a cooling pad or set up a kiddie splash pool in the garden to allow your dog a little paddle on warm days.
7. Protect your dog from sunburn
Sunburn is especially common in fair and short-haired breeds. If your pup is a sun worshiper or is set to be out in the heat for a prolonged period, apply dog-friendly sunscreen to their nose, ears, belly, groin and inside legs. If you’re struggling to find a dog-specific sunscreen, opt for one that’s fit for human babies or sensitive skin. Make sure to check with your vet if unsure on treatment choices.
Thank you for reading our summer fun blog! We took a little vacation last week, but the rest of this week will be filled with cool treats to help keep your pooch cool and happy this summer!
Everyone knows that when you’re eating your favorite treats, your dog suddenly adopts the saddest “I’m so hungry!” face on the planet and while we’ve all given in to our dogs every now and again, but here are some foods that we should never give our furry family members. Even if you don’t intentionally give these items to your pet as a treat, your dog may get into the trash and eat coffee grounds or snatch cherry pits from a bowl – both of which can be toxic in large quantities, so make sure you have a veterinarian you can see in an emergency. Here is a list of more common toxic foods for dogs:
• Alcohol: Can impair coordination and breathing; consumption may result in coma or death.
• Apple Seeds: Release a cyanide compound when digested. It would take a lot of apple seeds to affect a dog, but it is best to avoid them.
• Apricot Pits: Source of the toxin cyanide.
• Avocados: Contain persin, which is somewhat toxic; may cause vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, or pancreatitis.
• Bread Dough and Pizza Dough, Raw: Unbaked yeast dough can expand in a dog’s stomach, causing bloating. Symptoms include drooling, retching, distended belly, increased heart rate, and, in rare instances, death caused by gastrointestinal rupture.
• Caffeine: Large amounts of caffeine can result in a fast pulse, hyperactivity, increased blood pressure, tremors, seizures, and even death. Seek veterinary help right away if your dog has consumed coffee grounds.
• Cherry Pits: Source of the toxin cyanide.
• Chocolate: Contains caffeine, but the real problem comes from the poison methylxanthine. Symptoms may not show up for hours. Ingestion can cause hyperactivity, vomiting, elevated pulse, tremors, fever, pancreatitis, seizures, and, in rare cases, death.
• Cooked Bones: Can splinter when chewed or can be swallowed in too-large pieces. This can cause choking, internal bleeding, or digestive blockages that could result in serious illness or death.
• Corn on the Cob: Dogs can easily chew and swallow the cob itself. Bits of cob can cause digestive blockages, a serious condition indicated by vomiting and diarrhea. If unresolved, a total blockage is fatal.
• Fish, Raw: Raw salmon and trout are toxic if they harbor the bacteria Neorickettsia helminthoeca, which can be fatal to dogs if untreated. Symptoms generally appear 5 to 7 days after consumption and include fever, vomiting, yellow diarrhea, and discharge from the nose. Cooked fish of all kinds is fine.
• Grapes and Raisins: Contain a toxin that can cause liver damage, kidney failure, and sometimes death. Symptoms can occur from as little as one cup.
• Liver, in Excess: Contains high levels of vitamin A. Too much liver can lead to excessive bone growth of the spine and joints, weight loss, and disinterest in eating.
• Macadamia Nuts and Macadamia Butters: Can cause fever, rapid heartbeat, tremors, distress, and weakness.
• Onions and Chives: Contain sulfoxides and disulfides, both of which can cause anemia and damage red blood cells. A large quantity of food containing onions can cause hemolytic anemia. Symptoms include weakness, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, shortness of breath, and darkened urine.
• Pits and Seeds: Including peach and plum pits and persimmon seeds. These are a source of the toxin cyanide.
• Processed Foods: Likely to contain ingredients dangerous to dogs. Chips often contain onion powder and excess salt; diet foods often contain Xylitol; cookies or granola bars contain raisins or chocolate; and pizza contains onions.
• Xylitol: Commonly found in chewing gum, breath mints, and sugar-free foods. Even small quantities of Xylitol can lead to insulin overproduction, kidney failure, and death.
This may seem like a lot to watch our for, but really it’s just common sense so always use your best judgment when giving your dog a piece of human food. The absolute best thing to do is get in the habit of having different kinds of dog treats available to treat your dog when he does something good and then you can maybe cut out some of the begging dogs tend to do…maybe! At Petland Summerville, we have a ton of different kinds of treats no matter what your dog’s preference may be and in all different price ranges as well. Swing by and let one of our Pet Counselors help you pick out some good stuff for the four-legged family member in your life! Thanks for reading our blog and see you next time!
Hello! Over here at Petland Summerville, we hope you are having a wonderful spring and we wanted to bring you some interesting facts about some of our favorite four-legged companions. And while we are still learning about the animals in our lives, here are 10 of the most interesting scientific discoveries that have been made about dogs so far:
Number 10: They have 3 eyelids. Like people, dogs have top and bottom ones that move up and down. They also have one that originates in the corner of the eye and moves side to side. Its purpose is for clearing mucus and debris.
Number 9: Dogs really do love their humans. There’s scientific proof of it. MRI scans revealed that when presented with the scents of various people and canines, the reward centers of the dogs’ brains were most responsive to the aromas of their human companions.
Number 8: They’re just as smart as toddlers. Specially designed IQ tests show that dogs’ capabilities are on par with the typical 2-year-old. That means they’re capable of learning over 150 words and gestures.
Number 7: Dog paws often smell like snack foods. There’s some debate as to whether the particular scent is popcorn or corn chips, but either way the cause of it has been linked to a bacteria dogs pick up while walking about.
Number 6: Canines possess the super power of night vision. It’s not cat-level, but it is superior to the darkness navigating abilities of humans. Dogs’ pupils are larger and their central retinas have more cells dedicated to light sensitivity than to color detection. That gives them an upper hand when it comes to making out objects in dim light.
Number 5: Every nose is unique. The Canadian Kennel Club has been using nose prints as a means of individual identification since the 1930s, and many organizations have followed suit.
Number 4: They most likely dream. Proof isn’t at the 100 percent mark, but there is an abundance of support backing the claim. Much of it is based in brain attributes and behaviors that dogs and humans share. Among them are structure and the occurrence of electrical impulses during the deep sleep stage.
Number 3: Fur isn’t just about warmth. In the summer it acts as insulation, keeping heat from reaching the body. Fur also protects the skin from the sun’s damaging rays.
Number 2: They really do listen when you talk. Even better, they’ve been shown to understand a lot of what’s being said. Though they’re not able to decipher the words, dogs can interpret certain sounds and the message’s overall emotional tone.
Number 1: Dogs aren’t nearly as sweaty as humans. That’s largely because rather than having sweat glands all over the bodies, as people do, dogs only have them in their paws. To cool off, they rely mostly on panting.
We hope you have been just as blown away as we were about these incredible dog discoveries! Make sure you amaze your friends and family with all this newfound knowledge about man’s best friend! Thank you for taking the time to read our blog and we’ll see you next time!
Travel Checklist for Anyone Taking Their Pooch on the Road This Summer!
The season is upon us to go traveling with our families, and for some of us that includes our four-legged family members as well! This checklist is just a quick reminder of the essentials when leaving home with our animals, so don’t forget to check back when you’re heading out of town so you don’t forget anything you need.
1. Leash & Collar
This seems like an easy one, but you’d be surprised how often they accidentally get left behind when you’re loading Fido (and everything else!) into the car. These things are essential for the safety of your dog when taking bathroom breaks, as the territory is unfamiliar and may take more than a simple command to get your pooch under control.
2. Medical & Vaccination Records
This is often something that gets left behind in the hustle and bustle of packing for a trip, but oh so important when traveling with your dog. Should you be boarding your animal or if an emergency happens while on the road, it is important to have all the information you need you get your pet fully cared for. And if you’re leaving the country, checking what vaccinations are required is a must if you don’t want to run the risk of being denied entry!
3. Identification Tags
Usually this goes hand-in-hand with your leash and collar, but is worth noting just in case your tag is out of date with an incorrect address or phone number. Also, make sure your pet’s micro-chip is registered correctly and has up to date information in case your pet is lost or stolen.
4. First Aid Travel Kit
It seems a little far-fetched, but you never know what could happen on a long road trip, especially if it’s your dogs first time! Some things to include in this kit are eye wash, stypic powder for bleeding and antiseptic wipes. Be prepared, your pet will thank you!
5. Blankets or Seat Protectors
It’s no fun to have to sit in hair or mud after your pooch has been laying on your car seats either from a short trip to a long drive, so it might make things easier for you if you avoid the problem altogether by covering them ahead of time. And don’t forget an extra towel or two, just in case your pet gets into some really dirty fun on the way!
6. Safety Restraints
Check to see if your state has passed a mandatory seat belt law for pets, or if they haven’t ask yourself how safe your pet is without one. Do they tend to distract you by moving around constantly? Make sure both you and your animal stay safe in the car by considering a seat belt harness.
7. Food & Water
This also seems like another no-brainer, but it’s important for your dog to have comfort in the food they are used to and that won’t upset their stomach. And having a nice supply of bottled water for a long trip is an essential for keeping your dog hydrated.
8. Toys, Toys and More Toys
If your pet is a nervous traveler (and even if they aren’t!) it’s always a good idea to have plenty of their familiar toys lying around. It will make they trip better for you if you don’t have to constantly monitor your pet to make sure they don’t have their teeth on anything they shouldn’t and better for them if they have something that reminds them of home.
9. Always Check with the Hotel
If you’re staying in a hotel in part of or all of your trip, it’s a good idea to double check the hotel for any last minute changes to their pet policy. Sometimes hotels will go non-pet friendly or have a change in rules on how big the dog can be or even what breed, sad but true. It’s definitely worth a short phone call to find out, especially if you’ve booked way in advance!
I hope this travel checklist will prove useful to you if you’re going to be travelling with your animals this summer! As always, thank you for being a loyal customer and blog reader!
It seems like common knowledge that you have to “dog-proof” or “puppy-proof” your home when you bring a new animal into your space, but we don’t always remember the outside spaces! Here is a simple checklist of things to watch out for in your backyard, especially with the summer almost upon us. This post is primarily for dogs, but works just as well for other new pets like cats and various small animals.
1. Choose Dog-Safe Flowers for Garden
Seasonal flowerbeds are beautiful, but many common flowers, including tulips, daffodils, azaleas and amaryllis can be poisonous to dogs. Talk to your vet about which plants are safe for dogs before you put on your gardening gloves or allow your pet outside unsupervised!
2. Secure Trash Cans/Garage Supplies
Trash cans and recycling bins should be secured with appropriate lids. Liquids such as fuel, cleaning supplies and antifreeze (which can be fatal to pets), needs to be stored out of reach of your pet. Bug or rat bait and herbicides should be used with caution and stored properly, as they can also be fatal to dogs.
3. Fence Around Swimming Pools
Even if your dog is a strong swimmer, he or she should never be left unattended in a yard with a pool. Your pool area should be fenced, and your dog should know how to safely enter and exit the pool from an early age.
4. Check Fence for ‘Weak’ Spots
Even if your yard has a fence, a wiggly pup can easily slip through tiny gaps or holes you may not notice. Regularly check the fence in your yard to make sure it is secure before letting your dog out in the yard.
5. Mow Lawn/Landscape Regularly
Ticks will use tall grasses and branches in your yard to hitch a ride onto your dog’s skin. To help keep ticks at bay trim back high, tall grasses and remove debris. And always, always, always use flea and tick prevention on your pets!
6. Routinely Clean Decks, Sheds and Other Backyard Structures
Fleas tend to live in dark, humid areas like outdoor dog homes, decks and outdoor structures such as sheds. Sweep off patios, clean under your deck and remove debris from outdoor structures to prevent fleas from congregating in your yard.
7. Keep Dogs Away from Lawns that Have Been Recently Treated with Insecticide, Pesticide or Fertilizer
Insecticides can help curb bug problems, but when applied heavily, may be toxic to pets. Try to avoid using insecticide when possible or talk to your veterinarian about the best way to use such chemicals. Keep your pet off lawns that have recently been treated with insecticides, pesticides or fertilizers.
8. Provide Water and Shade
Dogs love playing outdoors year-round, but dehydration and heat sickness can be a very real threat in warm, sunny weather. Make sure to give your pup plenty of breaks in the shade, access to fresh water and the ability to go inside if he needs it.
These are just a couple of quick to-dos before bringing in or keeping pets outside. Another thing to keep in mind is always having a collar with easily identified tags with your information as well as having your pet micro-chipped and registered with a national pet database. This is so important that every puppy and kitten that leaves our store is micro-chipped for lifetime identification and registered with their new owners before they even leave the store! If you have any other questions about “puppy-proofing” either your house or backyard, please don’t hesitate to ask our very helpful Pet Counselors and they should be able to help point you in the right direction. And thank you for reading our blog posts! Until next time, have a safe and happy start to your summer!