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"Finding Rover" Now Being Used in Asheville

Screen Shot 2019-01-14 at 3.37.29 PM"Finding Rover" is a new technology that uses facial recognition technology to help reunite lost dogs and cats with their families, allowing anyone with computer access to be a superhero.

If you FIND a stray dog or cat, all you need to do is click ‘I Found a Pet’, snap a picture on your phone, and upload to www.findingrover.com. From there the magic of Finding Rover will match that photo with photos of pets that have been reported missing.

If you have LOST a dog or cat, click ‘I Lost a Pet’, upload your pet’s picture, and Finding Rover will search found reports which will include animals in our care. A partnership with Asheville Humane Society, who operate the Buncombe County Animal Shelter, automatically updates all of the pets at the shelter on Asheville Humane's Finding Rover page!

Wondering why you should use this new technology? Here are the top five reasons:
1. It’s easy! Anyone with a smartphone or computer can upload a lost or found dog or cat instantly.
2. It’s FREE! Although millions of dollars have been invested into this technology, it doesn’t cost you a penny.
3. It helps find pets homes! It’s not just about helping lost pets. Dogs and cats that are Available for Adoption are also on Finding Rover!
4. It’s not just for dogs! Dogs aren’t the only pets that get out. Finding Rover is optimized to work for feline friends as well.
5. It saves lives! At your shelter the number one goal is to keep pets safe before they even reach your doors. Using this tool, we can all become superheroes and help keep our shelter empty.

For more information or to upload a photo of your pet, visit: https://www.findingrover.com/


10 Reasons Dogs and Cats can Get Along

Guest Post by Ron Wolff

Friends-1149841_1920Cats and dogs may seem like natural enemies, but it doesn’t have to be that way. A lot of times, you can have both pets living together in the same house and have almost no problems. If you are apprehensive that adding a new pet to your family might cause trouble, then here are some reasons to lay your fears to rest.

  1. They Can Be Best Friends

Cats and dogs really can get along and look out for each other and even be buddy-buddy. They don’t even have to grow up together. Just living in the same house and having similar temperaments can make them best buddies. Many times, you won’t even have to work at making them like each other. They will just naturally gravitate toward the companionship the other offers, and you will find yourself with two very close pets who hardly ever fight.

  1. They Can Sleep Together

There are few things more adorable than a dog and a cat cuddling up together on the floor. They may cuddle in the dog’s sleeping area or the cat’s, but two pets that are friendly with one another will often lie right next to each other for warmth and comfort. They find the company of one another soothing, so don’t be surprised to see them in bed with each other.

  1. They Share the Same Food

Many times, dogs and cats will eat some of the same food. Now, we know that some animals can be very selfish when it comes to mealtime, but others will actually share what they have. You might see your dog waiting patiently for the cat to finish its food before the dog jumps in and eats the leftovers. This kind of behavior is wonderful to see and not as rare as you might think.

  1. They Watch Out for One Another

Dogs and cats can both be protective of each other. If you have a young dog and an older cat, the older cat may be protective of the dog and make sure it doesn’t get into trouble. Large dogs can protect smaller cats as well, chasing away strange cats or dogs to protect their friend.

  1. They Can Go to the Vet Together

A trip to the vet can be quite scary for your pet. However, if they have their friend along, it won’t be quite so traumatic. They can provide comfort and friendship for one another to make the visit more pleasant.

  1. They Can Get into Trouble Together

Dogs and cats that get along will do all sorts of things together. They may even make a mess of your home together! They can dig in the flower garden, knock over the trash can and get into other mischief as partners in crime. You may not like the mess they made, but you will love that they are teaming up as pals and getting along with each other.

  1. They Can Both Look to You for Attention

As their owner, you hold a special place in the hearts of your pets. Because both your cat and dog will adore you, they will often get along for your sake, putting aside petty bickering to show you affection, come when you call and play with you together.

  1. They Can Chase Animals Together

As your pets pal around together, they will get involved in some of the same activities. If a bird, squirrel or other small animal gets into the yard, your dog and cat may both go chasing after it. This is true whether your dog and cat are roughly the same size or the dog is far bigger than the cat. It’s hilarious to see them both go bounding after their prey and then watch them both look sad when it gets away.

  1. They Provide Warmth for Each Other

If the weather gets cold, cats and dogs may snuggle against one another for warmth. The dog may not get much warmth from the cat, but it’s enough to make a difference, and the dog may not mind providing a shield against the cold for its feline friend.

  1. They Can Love You Together

Cats and dogs may actually compete for your affection and work together to show you how much they love you. If your cat sees the dog getting attention from you, it may join in and purr as it rubs up against your leg. The dog may feel left out when you are holding the cat and want some of that loving as well.

These are just a few of the many reasons why cats and dogs do not have to be enemies. Your dog and cat can get along just like this and in so many other wonderful ways.

Ron Wolff is the content editor at pupjunkies.com – a site for happy, healthy, and adventurous dogs who are fueled by nature.


Five Winter Safety Tips for Your Dog

Guest Post by Jennifer Scott

Screen Shot 2018-12-18 at 12.56.18 PMWinter is a magical time, but it can produce quite a few potential dangers for our dogs. From exposure to the cold to toxic chocolate treats, there is much to be vigilant against. Here are five tips to keep your pooch safe during the winter months.

1. Warning Signs

 Even in winter, your dog needs to be taken outside. One way to protect them is by being attentive to any physical and behavioral warning signs. Are they shivering or showing that they’re upset by barking or whimpering? Behaviors like these could be interpreted differently during the warmer months, but they can be indicators of distress in winter. Check their ears to see if they are cold, and watch out for lethargy. Your dog may just be discouraged by the cold, but reduced energy could suggest more serious issues. This is a time to be observant, as your dog will let you know if they are in trouble.

2. Paws

The cold takes a toll on our dog's paws. There are hazards concealed by snow, and ice can form between their toes, especially when nails are long. While you could avoid snowy areas, even sidewalks and roads have their own dangers due to increased chemical use. Salt and other deicers are toxic to dogs, and your neighbors may be unaware of that. Take precautions after each outing by wiping your pup's paws with warm water to remove salt and ice buildup. Your best option may be to buy booties, as they are comfortable and can keep them safe from harm and dry skin. This alone can keep their winter fun and free of ill-health.

3. Accessories

Even when they grow a heavier coat for winter, dogs can still feel the cold. This can make heading out onerous for them, yet they need to remain active for their own well-being. You can help keep your canines stay warm in dropping temperatures by adding a sweater to their natural buffer. What materials you choose will depend on the size of your pet and the thickness of their fur. Dog clothing can also be modified to deal with darker days. Your walks may happen in poor visibility, so consider attachable safety lights and high-visibility gear to give you peace of mind.

4. Hazards

Winter is a festive time, but cold weather foods can be harmful to dogs. Many wintery foods contain chocolate, but these treats can cause severe toxic reactions when ingested by our canines. Rich “people foods” can also cause problems, so avoid indulging your furry friends, as their health is more important than allowing occasional tableside begging. Especially dangerous in the garage is antifreeze which can poison pooches. Dogs are curious, but it's essential that you stop them from investigating anything that could be dangerous.

5. Keep Dogs Indoors

Bring your pooch inside during cold weather. Outdoor kennels are not safe places in winter, so don't rely on them. Your pooch may already have a special place to sleep when indoors. If not, choose an area for their bed away from cold flooring, like hardwood or tile, or anywhere that is drafty. Ideally, it should be well-heated, but you can supplement this with a hot water bottle or electric bed. However, take care that they do not become overheated, as this could cause restlessness. Aside from walks, keep your dog's outings to a minimum. That includes washing them indoors. It may sound messy, but a wet coat can be a recipe for hypothermia.

Our dogs deserve nothing but safety. Plan out how you can protect your canine from outdoor hazards and cooler temperatures, and be aware of physical warning signs. Winter should be a time to frolic, so make this season a happy one for your pooch.

Jennifer Scott has experienced anxiety and depression since she was a teenager. She shares stories about the ups and downs of her anxiety and depression at http://spiritfinder.org/

Image courtesy of Pexels


Controlling Allergies in Your Dog

Guest Post by William Hill

ID-10032366Dоgѕ suffer from different kіndѕ of аllеrgіеѕ and have dіffеrеnt rеасtіоnѕ аnd symptoms tо еасh оf thеm. Wаtсhіng your pet ѕuffеr іѕ one thіng, but being unable to dо аnуthіng tо alleviate thеіr ѕuffеrіng саn bе vеrу раіnful for уоu.

These allergies could be:

  • Sеаѕоnаl аllеrgіеѕ
  • Food allergies
  • Environmental аllеrgіеѕ
  • Allеrgіс rеасtіоnѕ to ѕnаkе bіtеѕ
  • Allеrgіс rеасtіоnѕ tо іnѕесt bites

In mоѕt cases thе symptoms ѕhоw оn thе ѕurfасе оf thе skin. Wе see ѕуmрtоmѕ like rеd, itchy еуеѕ, a runnу nоѕе, sneezing, constant ѕсrаtсhіng or bіtіng, еtс. Fіndіng out thе bеѕt wауѕ tо control thеѕе allergies is іmроrtаnt in оrdеr to kеер уоur dog healthy аll thе tіmе.

Antіhіѕtаmіnеѕ Control Allergies

Antіhіѕtаmіnеѕ are сhеmісаlѕ nаturаllу rеlеаѕеd bу the bоdу durіng allergic reactions іn order to fight, reduce аnd tоtаllу rеmоvе all symptoms that mіght mаkе уоu feel unсоmfоrtаblе during an allergic аttасk. Uѕіng thіѕ nаturаl сhеmісаl as a guіdе, ѕсіеntіѕts created and реrfесtеd the best drugs thаt саn do thіѕ same thіng and bring rеlіef tо your pet.

One оf the most popular brands оf this mеdісіnе іѕ Bеnаdrуl (diphenhydramine).

Bеnаdrуl fоr Dоgѕ

Bеnаdrуl for dogs іѕ a vet-approved readily аvаіlаblе gо-tо trеаtmеnt for allergies, mоtіоn ѕісknеѕѕ аnd anxiety in pets.

With dірhеnhуdrаmіnе as an асtіvе іngrеdіеnt, Bеnаdrуl саn bе аррlіеd tорісаllу for trеаtіng pain аnd іtсhіng саuѕеd bу things ѕuсh аѕ poison ivy, poison oak, mіnоr сutѕ and burnѕ, аnd іnѕесt bіtеѕ. It саn аlѕо be tаkеn оrаllу tо treat аllеrgіеѕ, hау fever, соld ѕуmрtоmѕ, аnd іnѕоmnіа.

Bеnаdrуl can аlѕо bе a uѕеful trеаtmеnt іf уоur dоg suffers from аnу оf the following ѕуmрtоmѕ of other mеdісаl/рhуѕісаl соndіtіоnѕ:

  • Anxіеtу
  • Aѕthmа
  • Cаr Sickness
  • Insomnia
  • Mоtіоn sickness
  • Reactions tо Vассіnеѕ

Sіdе effects

Bеfоrе аdmіnіѕtеrіng any tуре of medication tо your pup, іnсludіng Bеnаdrуl, іt іѕ hіghlу recommended thаt you talk to уоur vеt to get аn еxреrt оріnіоn. They’ll be able tо tell уоu whеthеr it’s ѕаfе оr whеthеr thе mеdісіnе mіght саuѕе a bаd rеасtіоn.

Whіlе many vеtеrіnаrіаnѕ соnѕіdеr Bеnаdrуl to bе rеаllу ѕаfе, thеrе аrе ѕtіll dаngеrѕ and adverse rеасtіоnѕ аѕѕосіаtеd wіth thе drug thаt реt оwnеrѕ should bе aware оf.

COMMON SIDE EFFECTS OF BENADRYL

  • Dry mоuth
  • Urinary retention
  • Increased hеаrt rate
  • Sеdаtіоn
  • Hyper salivation
  • Rapid breathing

Bеnаdrуl Dоѕаgе fоr Dogs

No twо dogs аrе the ѕаmе. All dоgѕ rеѕроnd differently tо nеw mеdісаtіоnѕ іn thеіr lіvеѕ. Thеrеfоrе, іt іѕ іnсrеdіblу іmроrtаnt tо tаlk tо уоur vеtеrіnаrіаn about the dоѕе thаt іѕ right for уоur раrtісulаr dog.

Thе Bеnаdrуl dоѕе is bаѕеd оn thе dоg'ѕ bоdу wеіght. Experts say thаt 1 mg оf Bеnаdrуl x 1 lb. оf bоdу wеіght іѕ the way tо calculate thе аmоunt оf Bеnаdrуl that wіll be safe and effective. It usually takes 30 minutes to tаkе еffесt.

Wе wаnt to nоtе thаt Benadryl is tурісаllу аdmіnіѕtеrеd іn thе tablet fоrm whеn рrеѕсrіbеd fоr dogs. If аnd оnlу if уоur vet dееmѕ іt ѕаfе, lіquіd Bеnаdrуl can bе mіxеd іn with уоur dоg'ѕ fооd. If given іn lіquіd fоrm, thе dye-free children’s vеrѕіоn іѕ rесоmmеndеd аѕ it does nоt contain аlсоhоl. Hоwеvеr, dog оwnеrѕ ѕhоuld соnѕult wіth their vеt fіrѕt.

The amount оf tіmеѕ уоu саn gіvе the mеdісаtіоn tо уоur pet іѕ typically аrоund 2 to 3 times a dау, 8 hоurѕ араrt.

In соnсluѕіоn

Yеѕ, Benadryl іѕ аn еffесtіvе antihistamine for mіld to mоdеrаtе аllеrgіс reactions. Hоwеvеr, if уоur рuр is hаvіng аn асutе allergic rеасtіоn with facial swelling оr difficulty breathing, іt is іmреrаtіvе thаt уоu go ѕtrаіght tо thе vеt. Bеnаdrуl іѕ not еffесtіvе in ѕеrіоuѕ саѕеѕ оf аllеrgіс reactions аnd ѕееkіng medical intervention іn a timely manner іѕ еxtrеmеlу іmроrtаnt for уоur dоg'ѕ life.

William Hill is a dog lover and professional trainer from Kansas.

Image: Anankkml, freedigitalphotos.net


Holiday Safety Tips for Pets

The following information from the ASPCA is valuable for all pet owners during the holidays. It is provided as a public service.

ID-100116673The holiday season is upon us, and many pet parents plan to include their furry companions in the festivities. As you gear up for the holidays, it is important to try to keep your pet's eating and exercise habits as close to their normal routine as possible. Also, please be sure to steer pets clear of the following unhealthy treats, toxic plants and dangerous decorations.

Be Careful with Seasonal Plants and Decorations

  • Oh, Christmas Tree: Securely anchor your Christmas tree so it doesn't tip and fall, causing possible injury to your pet. This will also prevent the tree water—which may contain fertilizers that can cause stomach upset—from spilling. Stagnant tree water is a breeding ground for bacteria, and your pet could end up with nausea or diarrhea should he imbibe.
  • Avoid Mistletoe & Holly: Holly, when ingested, can cause pets to suffer nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Mistletoe can cause gastrointestinal upset and cardiovascular problems. And many varieties of lilies can cause kidney failure in cats if ingested. Opt for just-as-jolly artificial plants made from silk or plastic, or choose a pet-safe bouquet.
  • Tinsel-less Town: Kitties love this sparkly, light-catching "toy" that's easy to bat around and carry in their mouths. But a nibble can lead to a swallow, which can lead to an obstructed digestive tract, severe vomiting, dehydration and possible surgery. It's best to brighten your boughs with something other than tinsel.
  • That Holiday Glow: Don't leave lighted candles unattended. Pets may burn themselves or cause a fire if they knock candles over. Be sure to use appropriate candle holders, placed on a stable surface. And if you leave the room, put the candle out!
  • Wired Up: Keep wires, batteries and glass or plastic ornaments out of paws' reach. A wire can deliver a potentially lethal electrical shock and a punctured battery can cause burns to the mouth and esophagus, while shards of breakable ornaments can damage your pet's mouth and digestive tract.

Avoid Holiday Food Dangers

  • Skip the Sweets: By now you know not to feed your pets chocolate and anything sweetened with xylitol, but do you know the lengths to which an enterprising pet will go to chomp on something yummy? Make sure to keep your pets away from the table and unattended plates of food, and be sure to secure the lids on garbage cans.
  • Leave the Leftovers: Fatty, spicy and no-no human foods, as well as bones, should not be fed to your furry friends. Pets can join the festivities in other fun ways that won't lead to costly medical bills.
  • Careful with Cocktails: If your celebration includes adult holiday beverages, be sure to place your unattended alcoholic drinks where pets cannot get to them. If ingested, your pet could become weak, ill and may even go into a coma, possibly resulting in death from respiratory failure.
  • Selecting Special Treats: Looking to stuff your pet's stockings? Stick with chew toys that are basically indestructible, Kongs that can be stuffed with healthy foods or chew treats that are designed to be safely digestible. Long, stringy things are a feline's dream, but the most risky toys for cats involve ribbon, yarn and loose little parts that can get stuck in the intestines, often necessitating surgery. Surprise kitty with a new ball that's too big to swallow, a stuffed catnip toy or the interactive cat dancer.

Please visit our People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets page for more information.

Plan a Pet-Safe Holiday Gathering

  • House Rules: If your animal-loving guests would like to give your pets a little extra attention and exercise while you're busy tending to the party, ask them to feel free to start a nice play or petting session.
  • Put the Meds Away: Make sure all of your medications are locked behind secure doors, and be sure to tell your guests to keep their meds zipped up and packed away, too.
  • A Room of Their Own: Give your pet his own quiet space to retreat to—complete with fresh water and a place to snuggle. Shy pups and cats might want to hide out under a piece of furniture, in their carrying case or in a separate room away from the hubbub.
  • New Year's Noise: As you count down to the new year, please keep in mind that strings of thrown confetti can get lodged in a cat's intestines, if ingested, perhaps necessitating surgery. Noisy poppers can terrify pets and cause possible damage to sensitive ears. And remember that many pets are also scared of fireworks, so be sure to secure them in a safe, escape-proof area as midnight approaches.

Image: Theeradech Sanin, freedigitalphotos.net


Do Dogs Need Clothes in Winter? Myths and Facts

Guest Post by Rachel Burns

Do dogs really need clothes in winter? We did some digging on this, taking note of all the myths and as well as the facts. Read on to find out why you should get some coats for small dogs such as Chihuahuas during cold seasons, and much more!

Duffy-brook-471893-unsplashIt's that time of the year again when the weather is cold and even dogs will need some warm clothes. It is not uncommon to visit a store during winter and see greyhounds in big dog sweatshirts and puppies in cute little coats trudging behind their owners. And that got us wondering, do dogs really need clothes in winter? We did some digging on this, taking note of all the myths and misconceptions as well as the facts.

Different Dogs, Different Needs

When we asked a couple of our vet friends and several pet parents whether they recommend dressing up our furry friends during winter, the answers we got were mixed. One vet suggested that dogs have innate protection from the cold in the form of their fur coats. As a matter of fact, we found out that dogs are actually better suited to cold weather than the summer heat.

But then again, just like humans, different dogs process cold in different ways. Generally, dogs with thicker fur coats, such as Terriers, Maltese, Afghan Hound, and Huskies, don't need clothes in winter. However, it makes sense to provide coats for small dogs, such as Chihuahuas and Poodles, during the winter months or else they will fall ill. Also, some bigger dog breeds, including some Pit Bulls and Greyhounds, have relatively thin coats and hence would appreciate the extra protection from clothes. Other types of dogs, such as Labradors and German Shepherds, don't necessarily need to be covered up, but it won't hurt if you do.

Not Every Dog is Comfortable with Clothes

There is a misconception, especially among first-time pet parents, that all they have to do is throw on some warm coat with fur hood and their pet will be alright. Well, that's not exactly a myth, but it is somewhat untrue. Dogs are highly curious animals (puppies especially) and are just as naturally reluctant to accept change as human beings. The first time you put a piece of clothing on your dog's back, chances are he won't be responsive, and he will most likely "freeze" in place. As such, it may makes sense to gradually introduce your dog to clothes by making him wear something for a minute or so every day.

Type Does Matter

Another misconception about winter dog wear is that all types of clothes will work fine in keeping your pet warm. But really, a knitted dog sweater with buttons can't protect your dog from the dew on the grass at the park. For the wet season, invest in waterproof attire, preferably with fur or fleece internal lining to not only keep your pet dry but also maintain a level of comfort.

Buying Coats for Small Dogs

When it comes to buying winter clothes for dogs, it is important to buy those that perfectly fit your dog's size. Buy clothes that are too loose, and they won't guarantee warmth and comfort, or worse still, they could get torn as he plays.

Best Winter Jacket Brands

Your pet is your best friend, and you should aspire to dress him up nicely, not just to keep warm, but to also look great. As far as warmth, comfort and class go, the best winter jacket brands for dogs are:    

  • Ruffwear        
  • Alpine 
  • EzyDog, and
  • Hurrta.

All of these brands are available in major pet shops as well as Amazon.

One of the guys in the office wore a brown dog costume for Halloween and ironically, his dog had on a plaid jacket, usually the type worn by humans. It was a funny scene, but in hindsight, a clear depiction of the historically great relationship between man and dog. Hopefully, you have better fashion plans for your dogs this winter!

Thanks for reading. We’d love to know what you think about winter clothes for dogs, so feel free to comment on this post.

Rachel Burns is a creative writer of https://allpetsexpert.com/. She knows that there are millions of pet owners looking for the right kind of information online. And here is her expertise lies. Rachel writes about pet care health.  

Photo by Duffy Brook on Unsplash


Natural Nutritional Supplements for Your Dog

Guest Post by Jeffrey Lewis

Golden-retriever-puppy-2706672_1920Healthy eating is not just limited to humans. Your dogs also need a well-balanced diet to ensure their good health and longevity. A nutritious diet steers the way for their overall well-being.

Just imagine how much joy your dog brings to you. In return, you should give him all the care that he deserves.

In order to make sure that your dogs are healthy in every way, you need to give them a diet that is full of essential nutrients that are much needed for their overall growth and development.

Commercially available pet foods claim to contain all the nutrients required by your dog. But in reality, such dog food lacks nutrients that are necessary to improve your dog’s health. In order to make up for this, you need to give them extra supplementation. There are so many natural supplements available that improve your dog's body functions and are helpful in maintaining their overall health.

Here are some of the most important natural supplements for your dog's growth and development.

  • Good Fatty Acids

In order to make sure that your dog’s skin is healthy enough, you need to add beneficial fatty acids in their diet. The most important fatty acids include Omega-3 and Omega-6. These fatty acids are good for the nourishment for a dog’s skin and coat and can be really useful to relieve inflammation and itching. You just need to give these fatty acid supplements to your dogs for a few months and you’ll see good results. Apart from that, these fatty acids also help in reliving arthritis and seasonal allergies.

  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has many benefits for dogs. It is commonly available. Give it orally to your dog or topically apply it on the skin for better results. It has antibacterial and antifungal properties so it is very effective in curing and preventing bacterial and fungal infections in your dog. It is also very good for the immune system.

  • Mineral Salt

Salt is an essential ingredient in our diet. But did you know that it is also required by your dogs in a very small quantity, due to all the minerals it provides. The best salt for this purpose is Himalayan pink salt which is one of the purest salts available. It is free from contamination and other additives and chemicals. It has about 84 minerals and trace elements that are essential to fulfill the mineral requirement in your dog.

This salt has many benefits for your dog such as maintaining blood pressure, improving digestion, balancing pH and reducing water retention in body. Put it into the food or use in the form of salt licks for your dog’s health. These salt lick are a fun and convenient way to get most of the benefits of this salt.

  • Vitamins

As in humans, vitamins are very important for the dogs as well. Many dog foods contain vitamins in trace quantity. Some of the most important vitamins are vitamin A, B complex, C, D, E, and K. Dogs of different ages require them in different amounts. Some vitamins act as antioxidants and some help in digestion, and promoting healthy skin and hair.

  • Coconut Oil

You can give this oil orally as a supplement to your dog or can apply it topically on the skin. It is effective in both ways. It is an amazing moisturizer and provides relief from many skin conditions such as itchiness, ringworm, dandruff, and dryness. It is also very helpful in improving cognitive functions and gut health.

  • Glucosamine

Glucosamine naturally occurs in the joints and maintain the flexibility and mobility in dogs. With age, its production decreases due to which older dogs suffer from joint pain and difficult mobility. Giving a glucosamine supplement to your dog will maintain the healthy joints and regenerate cartilage to prevent joint problems.

Source:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mineral_lick

Jeffrey Lewis is a blogger at Ittefaq Salt. His aim is to create a beautiful, thriving life and help others to do the same. He is a crazy animal lover who enjoys writing about pets, animals, health and nutrition-related topics.

Editor's note: Dog owners should always consult their veterinarian about the nutritional supplements recommended for their particular dog.


Do You Have a Pet Emergency Plan?

Screen Shot 2018-11-09 at 9.44.55 AM
After Hurricane Florence made landfall in North Carolina in September, dozens of people had died, hundreds of homes had been flooded, and countless of properties had been destroyed. The tragedy had been compounded by the fact that many animals were trapped in their flooded homes. Some pet owners had decided to save themselves, leaving their precious companions behind. As a result, there had been over a hundred pets rescued by volunteers in North Carolina alone days after the hurricane.

Pets trapped and left behind is a truly heartbreaking and distressing scene. But in case of powerful natural disasters, humans are often forced to choose between saving themselves and taking everything—including their pets—with them.

We hope we never, ever have to make that choice. We can’t prevent natural disasters, but we can prepare so that our beloved pets are taken care of always, even if we can’t be with them during an emergency.

That's why every pet owner should have a pet emergency plan, no matter how unlikely they think their pets could encounter natural disasters. We can’t physically be there with them all the time, but we can ensure that no harm would come to them.

Check out this great infographic that explains step-by-step how to create your own pet emergency plan:
https://www.mikesgearreviews.com/pet-emergency-plan-disaster-preparedness-pets/


Halloween and Your Dog

Dog-714861_1920Halloween may be a fun holiday for humans, but it can be pretty scary, and sometimes dangerous, for dogs. Here are some valuable Halloween safety tips from the ASPCA's Animal Poison Control Center:

Lock Candy Away
Kids love to stash candy in their rooms, but a dog’s keen sense of smell will lead him to even the most cleverly hidden treasure. Contact a veterinary professional right away if your pet does get into Halloween candy, especially if it contains chocolate or is sugar-free and contains xylitol.

Ditto the Glow Sticks
Glow sticks are used to help keep kids safe while they are out in the dark. Pets (especially cats) find these glow sticks to be a lot of fun and often puncture them. While most of the sticks are labeled as non-toxic, they do have an extremely bitter taste and pets who bite into them may begin drooling and racing around the house. A little treat or sip of milk will usually stop the taste reaction.

Have Pets Identified and Visible
There are a lot of extra people on the streets at Halloween, and that combined with strange costumes can spook pets and cause them to bolt. If you take your pet out after dark, make sure he or she wears a reflective collar and is securely leashed. And make sure your pet has proper identification on the collar.

Keep Pets Calm
Even pets who are kept indoors may experience intense anxiety over the large number of strangely dressed visitors. Keeping your pet away from trick-or-treaters may do the trick, but if you think more will be needed be sure and speak with your vet well in advance about options to help calm your pet.

Check Those Costumes
Costumes can be fun for the whole family. However, if you are planning on dressing up your best bud, ensure that the costume fits well and isn’t going to slip and tangle the pet or cause a choking hazard if chewed on. And never leave a costumed pet unattended.

 


Apartment Living with Your Dog

Dog-house-3183373_1920The lack of affordable housing in some areas can be a problem for pet owners, whose only alternative is renting an apartment. Apartment living with a cat is one thing, but it can be challenging with a dog.

ApartmentList.com has put together a handy resource called "The Ultimate Guide to Apartment Living with a Pet." It includes:

  • a comprehensive list that covers everything from policies to common pet fees to the difference between service and emotional support animals.
  • a checklist of 9 tips for moving with your pet that will guide you through everything you need to know to keep your travel smooth, your pet happy, and yourself sane.
  • good suggestions for ways to convince a landlord that having your pet live with you won’t be a problem.
  • a list of the top 10 apartment-friendly dog breeds.
  • and more.

Check out this helpful resource here: https://www.apartmentlist.com/rentonomics/the-ultimate-guide-to-apartment-living-with-a-pet/


How to Make Your Office Pet-Friendly

Dog-2871914_1920About 20 percent of U.S. companies are pet-friendly, not including co-working spaces that may allow pets. Before dogs are welcome into an office environment, though, a pet-friendly office policy has to be in place. Squarefoot.com has put together a very informative guide to creating a pet-friendly office policy that covers:

  • the difference between "pet-friendly" and support/therapy animals
  • six advantages of a pet-friendly office, including happiness, creativity and productivity and employee retention
  • five key considerations before establishing pet-friendly office policies
  • finding pet-friendly office space
  • how to implement a pet-friendly policy.

This is great information for business owners, as well as for employees who would like to convince their employers to make their offices pet-friendly.

Check it out here: https://www.squarefoot.com/blog/office-pets/ 


The Challenge of Renting with Pets

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In the Asheville area, renting a house or apartment with a pet is a challenge. In general, renting with a pet, especially a larger dog, can be challenging, wherever you live. Some rental properties even place restrictions on certain dog breeds. It can be such a tough problem that some renters will even surrender their pets if they can't find pet-friendly rentals. That's why, several months ago, Carolina Mountain Dog published a listing of some local resources for pet-friendly housing.

An infographic from Tails Pet Magazine might also be helpful. "Renting with Pets: The Good, the Bad, and the Frustrating" covers pets and the rental market, pet rental fees, and has suggestions for "finding your perfect pet-friendly rental."

Check out the infographic here: http://www.tailsinc.com/2018/08/renting-with-pets-good-bad-frustrating/ 


How Much Sleep Does Your Dog Need?

Guest post by Brian Morgan

Dog-848390_1280It is no secret that dogs love sleeping. In fact, they spend most of the day laying on the sofa and snoozing. Therefore, we often blame them of being lazy. However, this statement cannot be further from the truth. Because of their biological clocks and sleeping patterns, dogs have higher sleeping requirements.

Generally speaking dogs spend about 12 to 14 hours per day sleeping. Since dogs tend to adjust their sleeping patterns according to the owners’ patterns, their sleeps are not continuous nor equally divided. Usually dogs sleep 8 hours during the night and the remaining 4 to 6 hours occur during the day in the form of naps.

How dogs spend their days

Humans follow a binary sleeping pattern that consists of 12 hours awake during the day and about 8 hours of sleep during the night. Dogs do not have strict and preconceived sleeping patterns.

On average, most adult dogs spend around 50 percent of the day sleeping, around 30 percent of the day resting, and around 20 percent of the day being physically active.

The sleeping portion includes the long night sleep and the short naps during the day. While resting, dogs are awake but physically inactive. The physically active portion of the day includes all physical activities from walking and running to playing fetch and tug-of-wars.  

The dog’s sleeping pattern

The dog’s sleeping pattern is similar to ours. The first phase of sleeping is the slow one and it manifests with slower breathing, blood pressure dropping and heart rate decrease. This phase lasts for 10 minutes. After that, dogs enter the second, rapid eye movement (REM) phase. As the name suggests this phase manifests with fast rolling of the eyes under the closed eyelids.          

The only difference between the human and the canine sleeping pattern is the time spent in REM phase. REM is also the phase in which active dreaming occurs. While humans spend up to 25 percent of sleep in REM, due to their inconsistent sleeping schedules, dogs are in the REM phase for only 10 percent of the total sleep time. Because of the shorter REM phase, dogs need more total sleep make up for the shorter REM.

Simply put, although dogs sleep longer than we do, they do not sleep as soundly and they need to compensate for the lost REM’s.

Factors influencing the dog’s sleeping pattern

Adult dogs spend around 12-14 hours per day on sleeping, while young puppies tend to sleep for more than 18 hours per day. However, the exact time a dog spends on sleeping depends on several factors such as:

  • Breed – large dog breeds sleep longer than small dog breeds. Additionally, how much the dog will sleep depends on what it is bred for. For example, working dogs have lower sleeping needs than dogs bred to be companions.
  • Age – young puppies and senior dogs have higher sleeping requirements
  • Exercise regimen – as contradictory as it may sound, active dogs need less sleep than dogs with sedentary lifestyles
  • Environment – dogs that live in environments with extensive mental stimulations tend to sleep longer.

Changes in the sleeping habits

Sudden changes in the dog’s sleeping schedule may be a cause for alarm and can signalize certain health issues. The most common reasons why your dog’s sleeping pattern can be altered include:

  • Low-quality diet – bad diets make dogs sleep longer because they either do not provide enough nutrients or are hard to digest and require more energy for proper digestion
  • Poor health – cardiovascular conditions, inactive thyroid glands, diabetes and canine depression are all linked to altered sleeping patterns and can significantly influence the dog’s sleeping needs.

Changes in the sleeping habits are normal in older, senior dogs. Senior dogs tend to sleep longer during the day and they also tend to get up more frequently during the night simply because life becomes harder with age. This may seem weird at first, but it is a natural part of the ageing process.  

Doggy sleep disorders

The most common doggy sleep disorders include:

  • Narcolepsy – indicates excessive daytime napping manifested with sudden falling in deep sleep and it usually involves partial or complete muscle paralysis.
  • Insomnia – sleeplessness is quite rare in dogs and it is almost always due to health issues.
  • Sleep apnea – loud snoring caused to heavy and temporarily stopped breathing that causes the dog to wake up. If it occurs frequently it can lead to tiredness during the day.

All dog parents are well aware of how much their canine babies enjoy sleeping. To be honest, when it comes to dogs, extensive sleep is physiologically required. To properly function and stay well-rested, dogs need a good night's sleep and frequent day naps. 

Dogs are flexible sleepers capable of falling asleep out of boredom. They are also capable of waking up easily and becoming alert immediately after the waking. Because of this inconsistent and irregular sleeping pattern dogs need a lot of sleep. Additionally dogs do not sleep deeply and tend to wake up a lot.

If your dog does not follow its usual sleeping pattern, do not hesitate to contact the vet.

Brian Morgan is the editor for DogBedZone a website providing tips, guides, and resources for dog owners.

Image: Mathey, Pixabay.com


Just How Dog-Friendly is Asheville?

Madrid-2061937_1280Asheville has been lauded as one of the dog-friendliest small cities in the United States. So... just how dog-friendly is Asheville?

Thanks to pups-on-the-street research, AVL Today has put together a list of 30-plus dog-friendly places in downtown Asheville where you can eat, drink, and shop with your pooch. The list includes breweries, patios, and shops where dogs are welcome.

The summer is a great time to enjoy WNC's dog-friendliest city. Check it out here: 
https://avltoday.6amcity.com/downtown-dog-friendly/

Image: Kiranda70, Pixabay.com


Hiking with Your Dog 101

Guest Post by Houda of DiamondPup.com

Jorge-flores-98842-unsplashIf you are an outdoors and adventure enthusiast, then you know that there is nothing better than leaving “real life” behind and going on a hike, taking in the fresh air and enjoying beautiful landscapes. If you have a dog, you might have been thinking about taking your best friend with you on a hike, but, maybe you don’t know where to start your prepping.

Don’t worry, hiking with a dog is actually not that difficult if you follow the few tips in this article, provided that you are already a hardened hiker. If this is your first time hiking, then my advice would be to leave your dog home until you become more experienced.

First of all, have a pre-hike trip to the vet

After all, even if you are only hiking for a day, many (bad) things could happen in just one day. So, just to be on the safe side of things, go to the veterinarian first, and make sure your dog is actually able to hike. Make sure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date, and that his veterinarian does a full check-up before giving you the OK. In the end, nothing matters more than your dog’s health, and you don’t want him to get hurt when all you wanted was to have some fun and do some exercise.

Make sure your dog is properly trained

Most importantly, you have to be sure that your dog is under voice command, especially if you want to take him off his leash when it’s possible. If your dog goes running away as soon as you take him off it though, then don’t do it. It is better to keep him leashed than to be looking for him in a mountain environment where he could hurt sensitive wildlife or run into a wild animal.

Another thing to make sure of is that your dog is well socialized, since you will probably be meeting other people (and maybe theirs pets as well) on the hiking trail. This is especially important if your dog is from a breed that is difficult around crowds (such as the Blue Heeler for example).

Make sure the trail you choose is dog-friendly

Just like camping parks, some national parks do not allow dogs, even when they’re leashed. So, instead of going all the way for a hike and then coming back home with your tail between your legs (pun intended) because your dog wasn’t allowed, it would be better to just check online, and see which trails around you are dog-friendly and which ones aren’t. This website does a good job of gathering most dog-friendly hiking trails around the world, so don’t hesitate to take a quick virtual tour on it.

Pack lightly but smartly

If you are only going for a day, packing too much will just slow you down and put pressure on you and your best friend. Make sure your dog’s harness isn’t too tight nor too loose, and load the bags with everything necessary, such as light collapsible bowls, quality dog food (such as Merrick) that will give your pooch enough energy to keep on hiking, treats, and water. And, make sure the total weight doesn’t exceed one-third of your dog’s weight.

Pack your dog’s first aid kit

Not a lot of people think of it, but your pet’s first aid kit is just as important as yours. You can either buy one from a pet shop or make your own. If you want to make your own, be sure to have all of these components in it:

  • Gauze
  • Special pet bandages
  • Antibacterial wipes
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Surgical gloves
  • Tweezers (preferably ones that can remove ticks)
  • Painkillers and anti-inflammatory medicine
  • Ointments
  • Aspirin
  • Your dog’s medical paperwork (medications, vaccinations etc…)
  • Phone number of your veterinarian, poison control, and your personal information as well

Finally, remember to be safe

Stay hydrated, give your dog all the water he needs, have fun, and don’t think too much. Practice trail etiquette, only take your best friend off his leash in areas where it’s not prohibited, and don’t forget to always stay on trail, not only for your own safety, but also to preserve the forest and mountain’s flora and fauna.

About Houda of DiamondPup.com: I'm Houda, a full-time writer, traveller, and self-proclaimed dog person. I also make lame jokes, write poetry, and love eating weird food in faraway countries. Did I mention that I was a dog person?
Yeah, give me all the puppies, please.

Image: Photo by Jorge Flores on Unsplash


Tracking Your Dog with GPS

ID-10014990When it comes to getting directions, GPS on your smartphone is a given. What you may not know is that GPS is now becoming common for tracking dogs. There are numerous GPS dog trackers available on the market today; in fact, the choices can be bewildering. Here is some basic information about why tracking your dog with GPS makes sense, courtesy of TeletracNavman (and thanks to blog reader Natalie for pointing us to this resource):

  • 40 percent of dogs are startled by loud or unexpected noise. This "noise anxiety" can cause dogs to become frightened and bolt. A GPS tracker can help you find a frightened pet quickly.
  • When a dog goes missing and you aren't home, it could be hours before you take action. Some GPS trackers can notify you as soon as it happens.
  • A GPS tracker is your best friend when you are traveling with your dog. When you or your dog are unfamiliar with an area, it can lead to trouble.
  • If your dog likes to chase animals, cars or moving objects, a GPS tracker can help you track him down.  

TeletracNavman offers several other reasons for GPS tracking, plus a comprehensive list of helpful articles about losing a pet. You can find this resource here: https://www.teletracnavman.com/gps-fleet-tracking-education/tracking-your-dog-with-gps

Image: Simon Howden, Freedigitalphotos.net


Can You Bring Your Dog to Work?

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If you work at home, your dog can go to work with you -- but can you bring your dog with you if you work at a traditional job? Even though it's estimated that less than 10 percent of pet owners in the U.S. are currently allowed to bring their dogs to work, there is growing evidence that dogs in the workplace actually decrease stress and improve employee morale and productivity.

Quill.com has created a handy infographic, "Wagging in the Workplace," that explores the benefits of pets at work. It includes information about specific benefits of pet-friendly workplaces, provides examples of companies that are pet-friendly, and has suggestions for how a company can create and manage a successful pet-friendly policy.

You can access the infographic here: https://www.quill.com/blog/workplace-culture/wagging-in-the-workplace-benefits-of-pets-at-work.html

Image: Quill.com


Resources to Find Pet-Friendly Housing in the Asheville Area

ID-100388315We hear quite frequently from local folks that it is not easy to find pet-friendly rentals in the Asheville area, so we thought we'd make you aware of resources available if you're searching for housing that accommodates your dog.

-A local real estate company, Alpha Real Estate, specializes in pet-friendly housing rentals.

-Apartment List has several listings for pet-friendly Asheville apartments: https://www.apartmentlist.com/nc/asheville/c/pet-friendly-apartments-for-rent

- RENTCafe lists pet-friendly Asheville apartments: https://www.rentcafe.com/pet-friendly-apartments-for-rent/us/nc/asheville/

-A website service, Zumper.com, lists pet-friendly rentals by town. Here are links to a few of their listings: 

Asheville

Hendersonville

Weaverville

-Asheville Humane Society has an information page about pet-friendly housing, including tips for renters, online resources, local real estate agents, and a list of numerous pet-friendly apartment homes.

Image: Alex_Ugalek, Freedigitalphotos.net