Are There Side-Effects to Adaptil Collars?

If you are an owner of a dog who has been suffering from emotional issues such as anxiety, you might already be familiar with the company called Adaptil. If not, you definitely need to learn more about it. Why? Because Adaptil makes collars that could help your pup deal with stressful situations.

How these dog collars work is that they are laced with pheromones that should act on your pup as stress relievers. In dog worlds, smells mean a lot. Considering that dogs have several hundred times more smell receptors than humans, it’s not surprising that they use different smells as a means of communication. For example, the mother dog releases certain pheromones that give the baby dogs a signal that everything is okay.

Adaptil collars are using basically the same principle. They come with pheromones that tell your pup that everything is under control. And the result is that the dog will stay calm in stressful situations. What’s so great is that it’s always with them. The pheromones are inside the collar, meaning that he’s always going to get a share of them while wearing it. So, if he gets in a stressful situation, he’ll be ready to face it.

That wouldn’t be the case with other pheromone-based products, like a diffuser spray for example. You would need to use such a product on him, but you can’t predict when a stressful situation is going to occur. With Adaptil stress-reduction collars, you are not required to be on a watch all the time. But, because these collars release pheromones all the time, the question that pet owners often ask is how much pheromone is too much? Can Adaptil collars change your pup’s personality?

Can a Pheromone Collar Affect His Mood and Personality?

The simple answer is yes. At least temporarily… But, worry not, it won’t turn your lovely dog into a Cujo. It can only have positive effects. The biggest risk here is that your dog won’t react to it. But, if he does, he is likely to become calmer and more relaxed. Of course, this won’t turn him into a slug, it will just make him a happier puppy when dealing with stressful situations.

But, even if it affects his mood, you can be sure there won’t be any major changes. Adaptil collar just doesn’t have the power to turn a sad and emotionally troubled dog into a happy puppy overnight. For such a thing to be achieved, you will need to invest much more time and energy.

Of course, we’re not saying that it won’t work, but you can bet it won’t work too well unless the root of his anxiety isn’t removed. Speaking of potential causes of dog anxiety, here are some of the most common ones:

  • Change of living environment
  • Loud noises
  • Separation from his mother
  • Separation from his previous owner
  • Social anxiety
  • Travel anxiety
  • Bad experiences with other animals
  • Bad experiences with humans
  • Certain physical issues
  • Certain diseases

The good news is that most of the things from the list above can be treated through several different methods, including medication. But, all of those methods come with, at least some, side-effects. Unlike Adaptil collars…

Potential Side Effects of Adaptil Collars

First of all, Adaptil collars are not medications. So, your pup can’t take too much of It. And neither can you. Dog pheromones don’t work on humans, it is a proven fact! That said, the worst thing that could happen as a result of the use of Adaptil collars is that it stops working well on your dog. It may work great on him, keeping him calm and relaxed at first, only to stop working after a while.

In most cases, the reason why this happens has nothing to do with the collar. It has to do with you not being able to tackle the cause of his anxiety. Look at it this way – if the pheromone collar is telling him that everything is okay, but the cause of his fears is still there, your pup will stop trusting the pheromones.

That said, finding the cause of your pup’s anxiety is of utmost importance. Once you manage to deal with it, he won’t need the collar anymore. But, until the root of his anxiety is tackled, Adaptil collar can keep him calm. And the best thing is that even when the issue is over, you can leave the collar on him as there are literally no side-effects of using dog pheromone products.

Because of this fact, using such products is the preferred choice of many dog owners. Rather than risking the health of their four-legged friend by putting him on dangerous drug regimens, many dog owners choose the safer option instead.

Actually, the biggest worry you can possibly have about Adaptil collars is whether they are comfortable enough for your pup. Forget about pheromones, issues that these collars can include have nothing to do with them. These issues are related to the size of the collar.

Is It Comfortable for Your Dog?

Same as any other type of dog collar, the Adaptil collar you get for your dog needs to be the right size. Otherwise, the chance is that it won’t be too comfy for him. Actually, a collar that’s too tight can cause a variety of problems, including hairless, skin irritations, neck pain, through ache, breathing problems, and so on.

Obviously, the solution is to buy the best dog collar, which fits him perfectly. You won’t have any problems to do it if you buy the collar in your local pet shop, where you can test it on him. But, what if you’re buying an Adaptil collar for your pup online?

The solution to this problem is pretty simple – all you got to do is measure your dog’s neck and choose accordingly. You don’t even have to measure it too precisely because Adaptil collars are adjustable. Of course, you can’t buy any on random, because each of them has their own size range. Some are suitable for dogs of smaller breeds like Chihuahuas or Pomeranians; others are made for dogs of larger sizes, e.g., English Mastiffs and Great Danes.

The rule of thumb for picking the right size of an Adaptil collar is that if you’re not sure about the size, always go for the bigger one. Why is this a wise idea? Because these collars are not meant to be used for walking him on a leash, so even if it’s a little bit looser than expected, it really isn’t a big deal. Even if it slips off him, it won’t matter too much. In that case, all you got to do is put it back on him.

Alternatives to Adaptil Collars

One of the best things about Adaptil collars is that you can leave them on your dog all the time, without having to worry it would cause some side-effects, potentially compromising his mental, emotional, or even his physical health. Keeping the collar on him would mean that he would receive pheromone signals that everything is in perfect order all the time. But, he could get used to it too much so the collar wouldn’t be able to calm him down in a stressful situation. That’s why a good piece of advice is to take it off when he’s in a safe and stress-free environment.

For instance, when your pup is with you in your room, having a great time playing around, there really is no reason to use a pheromone collar on him. But, if you’re going on a trip, for example, for which you need to leave him in a pet hotel, helping him get through this experience could be done through the use of an Adaptil collar.

Sure, you can use other pet products with pheromones for the same purpose, not only Adaptil collars. The same company manufactures pheromone sprays that have basically the same effect on dogs. The problem with this is that the spray might not be as long-lasting as a pheromone collar.

Conclusion

Apart from pheromone-based products, there are many other potential solutions to dog anxiety. However, which method is the best is almost impossible to say. The reason is that it all depends on the type of anxiety problem your pup has, as well as how severe the problem is.

Sometimes, pheromone products cannot do a very good job at calming down a scared dog. In some cases, medication is the only possible solution. Unfortunately, unlike Adaptil collars, most anxiety drugs do come with some side-effects, some of which can be pretty serious.

This is why the best advice we can give you when it comes to helping your dog deal with anxiety is to ask a professional vet for advice. After all, they’re the ones who spent years at college, learning about these sorts of things. That said, the veterinarian is the one who will be able to judge what’s the best choice for your pup, may it be an Adaptil collar or some more radical solution.


Author Bio:

David Huner is a dog trainer looking to expand his knowledge on everything dog-related. Apart from learning new stuff on an everyday basis, David also likes sharing his knowledge with the world. That’s why he’s started his own blog named Pet Training Tip, where he shares his pet training tips and tricks.

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10 Ways to Keep Your Dog Healthy

There’s a lot of advice out there on how to keep your dog healthy. These tips are typically broad and simplistic like:

These are all well and good, but what do they mean? What does “better” or “more” mean? In this article, we will go into a little more detail.

1). Feed Your Dogs Quality Meat Protein

Dogs have evolved to eat meat. Even though they have omnivorous tendencies and can adapt to eat all sorts of foods, the lack of amylase in their saliva (a carbohydrate-digesting enzyme) is a clear anatomical sign that they are primarily carnivores.

The only way to truly feed a high-quality, meat-based diet is to feed your dog a diet comprised of whole, unprocessed foods. This can be prepared raw food, a premix to which you add your own raw or cooked meat, or you may home-prepare your dog’s food. Home-preparing is becoming more and more popular as consumers grow more educated and lose faith in manufactured pet foods.

2). Avoid Meat Protein Substitutes

Pet food manufacturers are aware that consumers look for a meat source as the first listed ingredient on the dog food ingredient panel. However, many of the ingredients that follow are not meat, yet are included in the nutrient profile as a protein source. Together these ingredients are often a much larger portion of the formula than the meat is.

The inclusion or peas, lentils and other legumes in dog foods are plant-based sources of protein, and while perhaps healthy in general, they have a lower biological value than meat and do not supply all 10 essential amino acids, or in what is considered the optimum ratio, for a carnivore.

3). Avoid too many Starches

Excess starches that aren’t used for energy, or aren’t able to be stored as glycogen for later use in muscles or the liver, are stored as fat. These excess starches can be blamed for the dramatic rise in obesity, cancer and type 2 diabetes that we are seeing in our pets. Dogs have not evolved to eat a diet high in carbohydrates and not to pay attention to this fact can be very detrimental to their health.

When looking at a dog food label, you will see grains, potatoes, legumes or other sources of carbohydrates. These not only provide a less expensive source of protein for the pet food manufacturer but also serve to bind the kibble together. Dry, kibble pet foods are very high sources of carbohydrates, and you may be surprised to learn that the grain-free pet foods may even be higher in carbohydrates due to their reliance on peas, lentils, and potatoes.

4). Provide Proper Supplementation

Most daily vitamin supplements contain the very same synthetic vitamins and isolated minerals as your dog’s food. Why duplicate the exact same nutrients that are found in your pet’s food, especially when nutrients provided in their synthetic form, especially fat-soluble ones like vitamin D, can cause toxicity at higher levels?

Instead, try a whole food multivitamin supplement for dogs like Daily Multi Plus, that contains nutrients from organic, whole foods. These nutrients are better assimilated by the body and excesses are easily and safely eliminated without additional stress on the liver and kidneys. Vital anti-cancer nutrients like flavonoids and carotenoids are found in many of these whole foods.

5). Avoid Over-Vaccination

Dog vaccinations can be beneficial when selectively chosen. But you should weigh the rewards with the risks. Not all vaccinations are necessary, and ALL vaccines carry the potential of severe side-effects. The Rabies vaccine is mandated by law, but other vaccinations are not. Instead of getting booster vaccinations, request a titer. Often your dog’s antibodies will be sufficient, making the booster unnecessary. Most vets are willing to do a titer in lieu of vaccines if asked. You can find more information on a safer, modified vaccination schedule from Dr. Jean Dodds, DVM that can be found at https://www.hemopet.org/dodds-vaccination-protocol-dogs-2016/

“Routine vaccinations are probably the worst thing that we do for our animals.”
-Dr.Christina Chambreau, DVM

6). Don’t Misuse Antibiotics

Sometimes antibiotics for dogs can be lifesaving. However, antibiotics are often misused. You should ONLY use antibiotics when absolutely necessary; they should rarely be used “just in case.” The over-reliance on these drugs will weaken your dog’s immune system over time resulting in more frequent infections. The chance of creating resistant organisms from repeated use of antibiotics is very high. Also, when common broad-spectrum antibiotics are used the beneficial flora is destroyed from the mouth to the anus resulting in imbalances like IBD, UTI’s, poor digestion and lowered immune response.

If your dog is subject to more frequent infections, consider the herb astragalus to increase deep immune response. Echinacea root is an excellent choice for acute onset infection. Try an herbal immune formula for your dog for a few days (if your canine is not in a life-threatening condition) and see if that works. If not, you can always resort to antibiotics later if necessary.

7). Avoid the Overuse of Steroids and NSAIDs

Steroids, when overused, can cause numerous side effects. The long-term use of steroids will decrease immune function and make your dog more susceptible to infection. Since steroids mimic hormones produced by the adrenal glands, overuse of these medications will suppress normal adrenal gland function. Their effectiveness will fade over time leaving the unfortunate canine worse off than before. If their use is necessary, provide for a period that doesn’t exceed 7 – 10 days at a time.

NSAIDs, on the other hand, were meant to avoid the side-effects of their steroid counterparts; however, this hasn’t turned out to be entirely true. If used to reduce joint pain; for instance, they interfere with the uptake of nutrients actually causing the cartilage to shrink and arthritis symptoms to gradually become worse! If your dog has gastrointestinal issues like IBD, these medications will damage the ecology of the digestive tract over time eventually making symptoms worse, not better! These medications also inhibit the anti-inflammatory prostaglandins that protect the gut, and the result is ulceration. This can become serious, and dogs can die from internal bleeding due to these medications.

8). Don’t Use Flea and Tick Pesticide Products

Chemicals contained in these products are known to affect the heart’s valves and can lead to heart failure. The chemicals are known neurotoxins, and seizures are one of the more serious, but not uncommon, side effects. Life-threatening conditions like Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia, an autoimmune condition caused by exposure to the toxins in these products, have also been linked to the use of these treatments.

Canines have evolved to handle tick-related illnesses quite well. Instead of applying these dangerous chemicals to your dog, focus on improving your dog’s immune system by using a product like Tick Protection and limiting their exposure as best as you can with natural herbal sprays. Be sure to inspect your dog after walks and remove ticks when you find them.

Fleas prey on weakened hosts so feeding a whole food diet, without all the excess carbohydrates that can make your dog more attractive to these pests, is a great natural approach in itself. You can also provide a supplement like Internal Powder that provides organic herbs that not only strengthen your dog but help to make him a less tasty target for fleas.

9). Provide Appropriate Exercise

Dog exercise is important for the movement of lymphatic fluid throughout the body. The lymphatic system relies on the motions of muscles to move lymph along. Dogs that don’t get much exercise will not only suffer from poor cardiovascular health but may also succumb to more frequent infections and the occurrence of fatty lipomas.

Exercise should be appropriate for the fitness level of your dog. Try not to bring your dog to the point of heavy panting, especially in hot, humid weather. Make sure he does not become overheated and always have water available. Be creative with your dog’s exercise!

10). Be Proactive!

Most pet owners begin treating joint issues when their dog starts displaying symptoms of pain. However, this is a little late as the joint has already been damaged. We always recommend you start joint support early in a dog’s life, beginning as a puppy for giant breeds and 5 or 6 years of age for smaller dogs. Doing this will help to prevent inflammation and joint damage as your dog ages.

The same can be said for kidney, liver, heart or any other potential issues. Speak with educated individuals that can recommend supplements or herbal remedies that can support your dog’s weak areas to prevent more serious issues in the future. Don’t wait for a blood test to show a serious acute condition before you act. Pay attention to changes on tests by comparing previous results, take behavior changes seriously and then be proactive!


Author Bio:

Philip Reich is a certified Master Herbalist who specializes in formulating supplements and herbal remedies for dogs and cats. He is the co-founder of The Pet Health and Nutrition Center as well as a frequent contributing author of educational articles in the field of pet wellness.

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How to Protect and Care for your Cat’s Liver Cells

The liver is a vital organ of the body. Its functions include digestion, removal of toxic waste from the blood, conversion of essential nutrients and storage of vitamins and minerals. While the liver works twenty-four seven to help the body function, it also becomes vulnerable to several diseases. Inflammation in the liver causes hepatitis, which, if, goes untreated, can damage the liver and prove to be fatal. But what causes liver diseases in cats?

What are the Causes of Liver Diseases in Cats?

Several factors can cause liver diseases.

Age:

Age is the number one factor for liver failures and diseases in cats. An elderly cat is more susceptible to liver disease than a cat in her initial years. However, this doesn’t mean that younger

cats can get away with liver diseases quickly.

Breed:

Breed plays another important role in developing particular liver problems. Siamese cats are prone to developing liver diseases over a period of time.

Eating patterns:

Hepatic lipidosis is a very common type of liver disease in obese cats. Inappropriate fat infiltrates into the liver and causes it to swell and inflame. Not eating for 3 days can end up harming your cat with a syndrome called Hepatic lipidosis or fatty liver. When the body doesn’t receive food, the liver realizes that the body is not receiving the nutrients and fuel it needs to function. The liver starts to break up its own sugar reserve and this damage the liver. Getting your cat checked if it refrains from eating for more than 24 hours, is a wise decision.

Medicines:

Medications such as Acetaminophen, can damage the liver in cats.

An animal’s organs are placed close to each other. As a result, the liver, gallbladder, intestines, and pancreas are packed closely in a cat’s body. Therefore, even if one of these organs becomes infected or inflamed, all the other ones will get infected too. This type of liver disease is called Cholangiohepatitis complex.

a ginger cat sleeps in his soft cozy bed on a floor carpet

What are the Symptoms of Liver Disease?

The symptoms can vary in every cat; however, these are the most common symptoms that every cat is bound to experience if it is suffering from liver disease.

  • Sudden loss of appetite
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Jaundice
  • Increased thirst
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Sudden changes in behavior
  • Excessive drooling
  • Lack of energy or depression
  • Dark colored urine
  • Pale gums
  • Accumulation of urine in the abdomen that appears like sudden weight gain.
  • If an obese cat suddenly stops eating, it could lead to a liver condition called Feline Hepatic Lipidosis.

The above signs can be severe or mild in nature but should never go unnoticed. If your cat is showing any of the above symptoms, chances are she is suffering from liver disease. You should immediately take her to the vet for further diagnosis.

How is Liver Disease Diagnosed?

The signs of liver disease are generally not clear and definite. This makes it less easy to diagnose the disease. There are endless causes and symptoms to derive a conclusion from; hence, it is very important that you visit your vet who will discuss the best way to diagnose if your cat has liver disease or not.

The first step will be to go through your cat’s medical history. It’s medical, nutritional check and clinical examination will give an overview of what exactly could be happening. The vet might ask you about any of the above-listed symptoms, change in environment or diet, intake of any toxins, etc. Mostly the veterinarians take a blood sample for a test to check some parameters like kidney, liver, hormones, enzymes, the blood cell count and protein levels.

In some cases, the vet might even recommend radiography and ultrasound to get a clear image of the liver and its surrounding organs.

How to Treat Hepatic Diseases?

A lot of preventive measures and dietary changes need to be adopted. These changes should be slow and under the supervision of a vet. The treatment of any liver disease is aimed at resting the liver, and completely minimizing the functions that involve metabolizing fats, proteins, and carbohydrates in the body. The liver during this stage, is very sensitive and needs utmost care.

The right kind of diet and foods will prove to be beneficial. Feed your cat the right kind of high-quality fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, the ones that its body can easily process and digest out of the system. Also, make sure to limit the amount of sodium intake of your cat and add antioxidants like Vit E, C, and selenium to fight against oxidative stress.

Types of Liver Diseases

Cats can suffer from a wide range of liver diseases that may be hard to differentiate between. A liver biopsy gives a clear picture of the right treatment required. Some important liver conditions are:

Lymphocytic Cholangitis:

Lymphocytic cholangitis is a non-infectious disease but causes a lot of inflammation. The causes for this condition are unknown, but it could be due to an abnormality in the immune system. The condition causes the liver to swell and accumulation of fluid in the abdomen.

Corticosteroids are anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive drugs used in the treatment. However, prolonged or life-long use of it can cause the body to relapse.

Neutrophilic Cholangitis:

As this bacteria makes its way to the liver through the bile duct from the small intestine, it causes the neutrophilic cholangitis, a bacterial infection in the liver. To diagnose the condition, a liver biopsy can be done, or samples of the bile from the gall bladder are tested. The condition causes inflammation and pain in the abdomen.

Medical aid should be provided promptly, and antibiotics should be given to stop the bacteria from spreading.

Hepatic Lipidosis

When overweight cats stop eating according to their appetite all of a sudden, it causes a sudden change in their metabolism. As a result, fat starts to accumulate in the liver, and the condition is therefore also known as the “fatty liver.” Having a fatty liver can cause abnormal swelling and can be fatal if it goes untreated.

The diagnosis of hepatic lipidosis is typically based on cat’s medical history, clinical signs consistent with hepatic lipidosis, blood tests, and an abdominal ultrasound of the abdomen, specifically looking at the liver and gall bladder. Clinical signs vary but usually include dramatic weight loss (>25%, may include dehydration deficits), lethargy, vomiting.
The treatment is an expensive affair where it takes months for the cat to recover.

  • IV fluids to help treat dehydration
  • Placement of a temporary feeding tube to provide adequate calories
  • Anti-vomiting medication
  • Appetite stimulants
  • Antibiotics
  • Vitamin K
  • Potentially plasma transfusions

Toxic Liver Damage

Toxic liver damage is a result of unsynthesized drugs and toxins that remain in the body. Some species of cats have a bad metabolism when it comes to drugs and other chemical medications. These drugs don’t flush out of the body and cause damage to the liver. Because cats are so sensitive in nature, you should always consult your vet before giving any medications to your cat.

Amyloidosis

Amyloidosis is a condition where a type of protein called amyloid gets deposited in the liver. This causes the liver to swell and makes it dysfunctional. As a result, making the liver prone to ruptures and bleedings into the abdomen. While some cats may experience it for the first time, the others are usually genetically predisposed to this condition. The liver becomes very fragile and vulnerable to sudden bleeding in the abdomen and ruptures.

Liver conditions a common problem in cats, and it is best if we as cat owners communicate closely with the vets so these conditions can be diagnosed in early stages.


Author Bio:

Harsh Arora is a proud father of four rescued dogs and a leopard gecko. Besides being a full-time dog father, he is a freelance content writer/blogger and an educationist, with more than 6 years experience in the field of content writing.

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How to Prevent Hairballs in Cats

Hairballs are common in cats, but they are not normal. In fact, some severe cases make a surgery inevitable to remove the hairball from your kitty’s digestive tract. That said, it is always better to take preventive measures and notice early signs before the problem gets bigger and complex.

My cat, Chuck, looked like he is upset with something. He stopped moving much, and I also noticed his enthusiasm was faded during his playtime. I noticed him like this for a week, and the other day he threw up some nasty things. I was pretty sure that it was a cat hairball.

I knew about hairballs back then, and Chuck was regular on his grooming. I researched and got to know that cats also can develop hairballs if they have other pet friends. Chuck used to lick my poodle Ozzie sometimes, but I never knew that also can end up in a hairball. I researched more and made sure Chuck would never develop a hairball.

What Is a Hairball?

Let’s now know about the nitty-gritty of cat hairballs. As the name suggests, a hairball is a ball of hair accumulated in a cat’s digestive tract. Well, you might be wondering why a cat would ingest hair only to find them get stuck inside. Cats are groomers, and they often lick themselves to keep their coat clean, shiny, and groomed.

A cat’s tongue has barbs attached on its surface in a backward manner. When she licks her fur, broken and loose hair gets stuck into the barbs which make their way to her digestive tract which won’t break down. Over time, this hair keeps accumulating in the tract and forms a ball of hair, a hairball.

Usually, cats throw up the hair she mistakenly ingested. Or the hair will find their way out through feces. But when they stuck into their digestive tract, the hairball forms and it can further cause an intestinal obstruction.

Even if your cat throws up the hairball and it doesn’t get stuck inside, the site of thrown up a hairball is quite unpleasant. There is no way you should consider hairballs normal. Not taking any steps to prevent hairballs is going to deteriorate your kitty’s overall health. Here is what you can do about hairballs.

Brush Your Kitty Regularly

Regularly brushing your cat can be a big help to prevent hairballs. Brushing will remove dead or loose hair from her coat which your cat won’t ingest while grooming herself, thereby reducing the intake of hairs and grooming done by your feline friend. Moreover, if you think your kitty is a shorthair breed and doesn’t need brushing, you may be putting her at risk for hairballs.

Hairball Prevention Products Available

Sentry HC Petromalt Hairball Relief - Fish Flavor (2 oz)Despite your constant grooming care for your cat, if hairball still is a problem, you can talk to your vet about taking some help of hairball prevention product. Those are mainly gel-like products which are generally laxatives. They are mineral and oil based things and won’t be absorbed by the body working as an intestinal lubricant. Moreover, their malt, tuna, or chicken flavor makes them edible for your kitty.

Your veterinarian can advise you on how often you should use the product which depends upon the severity of the hairball problem. In general, it is not advisable to use the product more than twice a week because the mineral oil used in it restrains her body’s absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. In a nutshell, seek your vet’s advice for this.

How to Use Hairball Prevention Gel

It is pretty easy to use a hairball prevention gel. Squeeze out a little amount of gel (a 1-inch long tubular form of a gel) on your index finger and offer it to your kitty. Most of the cats would take it without any objection because the gel has a good flavor.

Laxatone Tuna Flavor (4.25 oz)If your cat doesn’t accept it, try to open her mouth and paste the gel on the edges of her upper teeth or on the roof of her mouth. It will create some eerie feeling, and your feline buddy will just swallow it.

Some people also follow the method of smearing the gel on her paws, thinking the cat will just lick it off. Though this might not go as you have thought. First, your cat will try to shake the gel off of her paw, and because it is sticky and viscous, it won’t totally be removed from there. That will make your kitty lick it off from your paw. You can go with this method if you are ready to gel splatters on the wall and on yourself.

Hairball Prevention Food

Your cat’s daily meals also make a good option to tackle your cat’s hairball problem. There are many commercial cat food available on the market as a prescription diet with hairball prevention formula. If prevention gel and regularly brushing her isn’t working for her ongoing hairball problem, you can ask your vet for hairball prevention diet and which one to choose.

As a general preventive measure, you can increase fiber in the diet. In that case, you can take your vet’s help to choose what food and the amount of it would be perfect in the diet. Well, it is important to note here that supplementing the diet with excessive fibers can have adverse effects. Make sure the fiber your pet gets is from the natural source, i.e., no added fibers in excessive amount.

Moreover, you can feed some butter or oil in little amounts to make bowel movements better and digestive tract lubricated.

Keep Your Kitty Hydrated

A cat is finicky, and she won’t drink from her bowl if it is not clean and doesn’t have fresh water. Their instincts will not let them drink from it. If she drinks enough water, her digestive tract will stay hydrated and lubricated enough to keep things moving smoothly. The ultimate outcome will be less probability of the formation of hairballs.

Feed them a Wholesome Diet

Cats are carnivores. Their bodies are wired to digest and process a high-protein, low-carbohydrate, and grain-free food. If they thrive on carbohydrate-rich food, then there are high chances of poor digestion and malnutrition which can increase the likelihood of hairballs. That said, if you are an advocate of raw food or homemade food, make sure it is a wholesome meal.

Digestive Supplements Are Good

Add digestive supplements in your kitty’s food to improve her digestion. Formulas with psyllium seeds are generally used as supplements. Basically, these supplements promote better digestion which will help the digestive tract pass the hairball instead of throwing it up or getting stuck.

Catnip or Cat Grass

Meowijuana Catnip Buds -Purrple Passion (Large Jar)Give your furry buddy some catnip or cat grass. The extra fibers in it will help the hairball purge out from her digestive tract.

What Are the Symptoms of Hairball?

Now that we know how to treat hairballs let’s see what early signs of hairball you should never ignore.

Lethargy

Many of you would say, cats are lazy. However, there’s a difference between laziness and lethargy. Formation of hairball will make your cat weak and sickly lazy. When you notice your kitty is not moving much and doesn’t have enough energy to do anything, it’s time to talk about it to your vet.

Loss of Appetite and Weight

Certainly, there are days when your kitty won’t even eat her favorite meals. They are picky, but this shouldn’t last for five to six days in a row. Your cat will lose a significant amount of weight as a result of the loss of appetite. Consult your vet for further actions.

keep house clean with cats

Swollen Belly

An intestinal blockage due to hairball continues to grow if it isn’t expelled out. A lump can be seen on a throat or around his belly.

Constipation and Diarrhea

When a cat has developed a hairball, she goes through the bouts of constipation and diarrhea. As the ultimate solution to the blockage (which creates constipation) due to hairball, her body will try to purge the hairball by diarrhea.

Continuous Gagging and Hacking Without Regurgitating

This symptom can puzzle you. When your cat is hacking a lot and doesn’t throw up the hairball, you cannot judge what she is up to. Coughing and gagging is also a symptom of feline asthma.

Moreover, when your kitty is choking, she might act the same way. Hence, if you feel your feline buddy is showing this symptom, get her to your vet immediately for diagnosis.

Final Thoughts

Hairball is a root of many other health issues like inflammatory bowel disease, internal parasites, foreign bodies, cancer, hernia, and pancreatitis. That said, curing hairballs can save you from many other health risks. You should look for early signs of hairballs and if you’re not sure about anything, let your vet check her.

Moreover, you can try the remedies described in this article. If you’ve fought with hairball problems of your cat and want to share your experience you can share it in the comment section below. Cats groom themselves so make sure you brush herself regularly, this will be your first step to tackle the hairball problem. Keep your furry buddy happy and healthy. Long live the cats 🙂


Author bio:
Lauretta Williams is a web-addicted blogger. She loves spending her time listening to music, playing with her dog and writing blogs from her computer. We all want our dog not to run from home. But sometimes, they still might get lost. Don’t worry, we have your back. Report your lost with PawMaw, we can help you find your missing pet.

 

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Why Shelter Dogs Are The Best

Often, when people want to get a pet, they first think of finding a new, purebred puppy. that would be just the perfect kind of pet for them. Based on each breed’s characteristics, they would choose just the type of dog they believe suits their family the best. They would find a responsible breeder with a good reputation and wait for the litter to be born.

But, the truth is that choosing the perfect dog for you doesn’t have to do anything with its breed (unless you need a hypoallergenic dog). What matters is the affection and amazing moments your dog is going to provide you with. As you may know, if you treat your dog right and give him all the love he needs, he will likely be your most loyal friend that you wouldn’t trade for anything in the world.

Therefore, more and more people are considering to adopt a shelter dog instead of buying a pup from breeders. Most people that have adopted a shelter dog say their dogs are the most incredible creatures they’ve ever met before. Often, you would hear these people saying how shelter dogs make the best pets because they often turn out to be much more loyal, intelligent and affectionate when treated right.

And, we have to admit that we completely agree with them. Adopting a shelter dog is the best thing you can do if you’re a true animal lover. So, in this article we’re giving you 10 reasons why adopting a shelter dog is the best!

1. You’re Saving A Life

First things first, when deciding to adopt a shelter dog, you’re doing something very humane. You’re saving an innocent life from living without its own family and providing him with a home to live in.

Some of the shelter dogs were even traumatized by being treated badly or by living in poor conditions, which is why a dog from a shelter will appreciate even the minimal things you will bring to his life.

If you have kids, you’ll be setting them a perfect example of humanity and teach them good values without having to explain much.

2. You Will Save Money

Owning a dog can be quite expensive, especially in the beginning when you need to pay for vaccinations, checkups, and even neutering/spaying costs.

When you adopt from a shelter, you’re covered for all initial vaccination and sterilization procedures. You can ask your shelter center for all the health information you need for your new dog. They will surely provide you with a health record of your dog that you will have to hand to your vet.

3. Many Of Shelter Dogs Are House-Trained

If you happen to fall in love with an adult dog while looking for your new pet at the rescue center, you will most likely get a dog that is fully or partially house-trained.

Not all of these dogs were treated badly or abandoned on the streets when they were puppies. Some of them ended up in shelters after a divorce or the birth of a baby or of some reason other than maltreatment.

4. Many Of Shelter Dogs Are Socially Trained

Not only do you have high chances of getting a house-trained dog, but well socialized too.

No matter if they have been previously socialized before getting into the shelter, by spending time with other dogs and shelter staff these dogs get adapted to interacting with their human and canine friends.

5. You’re Fighting Puppy Mills

Besides saving a life, when you’re adopting a dog, you’re fighting puppy mills. If you buy a puppy from a pet store, flea market or even online, the chances are high that you’ll be getting a dog from a puppy mill.

These puppies are living in extremely poor conditions, and they don’t get proper medical care. Their mothers are kept in cages and aren’t bred in the proper, healthy way.

Instead of waiting for them to reach the proper age to breed, these female dogs are being bred way before they are fully grown and then mated over and over again which can result in a litter of sick puppies.

6. Your Adopted Pet Will Make You Happier And Healthier

It is scientifically proven that dogs affect our mood, and as you probably can guess it, they are affecting it in a very positive way.

Not only will having a pet make you feel happier, but the continuously improved mood will make you a healthier too. Plus, getting a shelter dog will result into more happiness, because he will likely surprise you with his reactions of pure joy.

7. You’re Helping Other Animals

Instead of buying puppies from pet stores and supporting a mass breeding system that puts dogs through a lot of suffering, by adopting a dog from a shelter center, you’re creating more room for other animals that are in need.

8. Adopted Dogs Are Even More Loyal

Dogs are known to be the most loyal pets out there. However, dogs adopted from the pet shelter will surprise you even more with how loyal they are going to be.

Especially dogs that were treated poorly, or have been abandoned; appreciate all the attention & affection much more, from their new owners. You will gain a new best friend that will show you his gratefulness in plenty of ways.

9. Adopted Dogs Are Usually Already Spayed/Neutered

Canine overpopulation is one of the main reasons millions of dogs are euthanized and abandoned each year. For this reason, rescue centers make sure to neuter/spay their dogs to make sure unplanned pregnancies and litters don’t occur.

Whether if you’re choosing a female dog or a male pup, you probably won’t have to worry about spaying/neutering costs and the post-surgery recovery of your new pet.

10. There Is A Lot Of Variety When Choosing

When adopting a dog from a local shelter, you will actually have a lot of different options to choose from. This includes dogs of different breeds and personalities; but you can also choose your new dog based on its age and health conditions. For example, you might have to invest in different supplements, or a Glucose Monitoring System Meter if you’re adopting a diabetic dog.

 young woman in dress and turquoise wellies walk her beagle dog in a park

For this reason, it’s important to ask all your questions to make the best choice for yourself and the dog. The staff will surely be happy to provide you with all the information you need. Shelters collect a lot of information about their dogs and will know all about their personalities, background, general health.

By adopting a sheltered dog, you won’t only be making one dog happier; but you might actually spread awareness and get someone else involved in this beautiful act of humanity. Set an amazing example for your loved ones, and they might easily end up doing the same. This way you will also get the satisfaction of knowing that you’re making a difference while making one dog happy.

Conclusion

If you’re convinced that a shelter dog is for you, contact your local shelter to answer all your questions.

We know how overwhelming getting a new pup can be; it can make us forget some crucial things out of pure excitement. A lot of us even forgets to buy a leash or a collar, and realizes it the first time we’re about to take our new dog to a walk. Therefore, we’re sharing with you a handy checklist brought by Barking Royalty of essential items you have to provide to your new dog before he arrives at his new home.

Print it out or save it to your phone/computer and thank us later! Good luck with your new pet!


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Healthy Treats for Cats and when to Use Them

You want to keep your cat healthy, why not keeping the happy too – in the meantime. Actually, this is the place where the idea of cat treat comes. You should choose foods for your pet cat where it is healthy and enjoyable as well.

Feeding a cat with proper foods is important. Pet owners usually do not forget to feed their pet. I mean, who leaves that little dude on an empty stomach? The emphasis should be on what are we giving and should we?

Here are some suggestions for your cuddly precious, which will keep her healthy and happy.

Cat Food

There are available cat foods specially made for the kittens. These are usually flavored to meet the expectation of the taste of your pet. Cat foods are of many types, but if we narrow down the list, we will find 3 different categories of cat that you can feed your kid.

-Dry Cat Food-

The cheapest cat food available in the market is basically dry cat food. These are available in a different weighted bag, and one bag can be served for quite a few months. These are usually crunchy. The worst part about dry cat food is it is not very much appetizing or palatable. Your cat may like it or she may not, it is up to her. If you have a cat that you can address as fussy eater, she will not be much interested in dry cat food.

If you get some high-quality dry food for your little furry cat, you can get balanced nutrition. Try to stick with the flavored dry cat foods; otherwise, your kid will turn away his face from dry food.

-Semi-Moist Cat Food-

Semi-moist cat food may seem identical in the face to the dry cat food, but the formula of making is different. Dry cat food is usually crunchy in the formula, but these are very much chewy. These are easy to eat than dry cat food. When it comes to price, it is in between dry and wet cat food.

These may be easier to eat but if your cat is highly selective, do not go for this. These foods are not seen in the selves of the cat owners these days because these are low in terms of nutrition.

-Wet Cat Food-

If you ask us about the best choice as cat food, we would definitely recommend this. Where cats are not interested in dry cat food and semi-moist cat food, your pet will easily lick the bowl clean if you serve wet food. This sort of food is very easy to eat and has a reputation for being immensely tasty.

There are a lot of high-quality wet cat foods available in the market. You can select any of them that match the taste standard of your pet. These are also available in different flavors. For better understanding, feed different flavored wet cat food to your cat and know which one is her favorite.

Wet cat foods are available in tins and packets both. Tuna is very much popular as a cat food flavor as cats tend to love tuna fish. Complete balanced nutrition is very important when you feed your cat. But you have to keep an eye on the weight of your cat here too. No matter how much they love wet cat food, you have to keep control over feeding him excessively. Otherwise, your cat will get overweight for excessive eating.

Now I’ll be talking about some human foods, which are great for cats too! Isn’t it sweet whenever you and your pet eating the same food altogether?

Human Food for Cats

As your kittens are mammals, they usually love some human food we eat. Most of the foods that are specially made for your cat are transferred to cat food from human food.

Not every food we eat is liked by them. And so, without knowing do not try to feed them human food. Here is a specific human food list for your kitten that can make your furry ball happy.

-Fish-

The most common human food that comes in our mind when the story is about your kitten is fish. Nowadays, we do not count it as human food when we talk about cat food. We usually are seen adding it with cat food.

Usually, cats generate a fraction of Omega-3. This needs to be maintained and kept in balance. Also, the fatty acid ratio needs to be maintained. Fish can provide a perfect proportion of all of these nutrients.

Raw fish can be served to your cat, but we do not recommend you do that. We will suggest you go for cooked fish because this will be easy for your kid to eat them. There are some fish which is tough to eat if eaten raw.

You will get so many fish flavored cat food in the market. These cat foods include different flavors of different fish. When you serve fish directly, your cat can enjoy more.

-Eggs-

Eggs, being cheap, these are the most available human food that your cat can enjoy with you. The best part about the egg is it is rich in protein and iron. This usually aids in lessening the intake of the unhealthy foods we eat.

But, never try to stick to raw eggs. If you do not cook the egg, then it can cause your pet E. coli and salmonella. These can cause food poisoning and much more. Raw eggs can make your kitten sick. For serving egg properly, you have to cook them. There are a lot of ways to cook an egg, go for the one that you cat likes most.

The easiest process can be feeding your furry baby scrambled eggs. Whenever you are making a scrambled egg for you, take one part from it and keep it for your little kitten.

-Meat-

Meat can be a perfect choice to intake protein. Moreover, your pet will love chicken as their food. The interesting fact about chicken is you can easily create newer items for your pet and serve it to them as their meal. You can feed chicken, duck or turkey in a properly cooked method. You can also try to go for pre-cooked deli packets.

Meat is called to be a non-negotiable part of cat food. You have to keep in mind that if you feed your cat undercooked meat, it can harm your pet. The same thing goes for uncooked meat. Try not to feed uncooked or raw chicken or turkey which can affect their health.

Another piece of information that you need to remember is cats are not fond of seasoned meat. Avoid serving them seasoned meat and settle on plain and properly sliced meat.

What to Avoid?

It’s time to focus on what foods should be avoided. First of all, no toxic foods. If a food seems to be tasty and healthy for our digestion system – this doesn’t mean that it’s the same for the cat too.

Grapes, onions, raisin might be good for us, but these should be completely avoided for your cat.

As said before, excessive foods are bad. I know the dilemma here. We all love our kitty cat so much and want to give her the best treats. But if you treat your cat disproportionately, at the end of the day, it will bring havoc. Do not do that.

Cats are one beautiful creature. What’s greater than the vibe around, when your pet cat is around? Let’s expand this vibe towards an extension by keeping the cat properly fed. Give your cat healthy treats.


Author Bio:
Jean E. Allen is a pet lover. She loves to be with her pets all the time, and she proudly admits it. Nowadays she is seen towards the progress of pet welfare. She provides comprehensive guides and expert opinion about pet hygiene at Vacuumist.com

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Tips to maintain Joint Health for Senior Dogs that Every Pet Owner Should Learn About!

Most, if not all, aging dogs suffer from joint pain and arthritis just like people usually do. Fortunately, there are a lot of things you can do to help your aging dog’s joint problems. Here are a few ways to care for your senior dog’s joint health.

As you get older, you may likely experience joint pain. This is mainly due to the decrease of lubricating fluid inside the joints. Years of usual wear and tear also cause the cartilage that cushions the bones and line the joint to become thinner. Apart from that, the ligaments also get shorter and lose some flexibility. All of these aspects make joint movement become less flexible and stiffer, resulting in joint pain and inflammation.

Humans are not the only species that experience this? Believe it or not, your beloved pet dog can also experience the same joint problems as they age.

Most, if not all, aging dogs suffer from joint pain and arthritis just as people typically do. Around 60% of all dogs in the US experience joint problems like arthritis or dysplasia which can not only cause limping, pain, and decreased energy levels but can also seriously diminish the quality of life for your pet.

Prevention and recognition of early signs are critical to managing and treating this joint pain. Fortunately, there are a lot of things you can do to help your aging pet. You only need to search Google to find a wide array of dog supplements on the market as well as natural herbs that can help promote better joint health.

If your dog is one of the 60%, here are some tips our expert veterinarian, Dr. Erin West on our board has suggested for you.

Always Keep an Eye on Your Dog’s Weight

A large majority of big breeds and overweight dogs suffer from joint problems whether they are old or young. If your dog is quite overweight, help her or him get rid of those extra pounds. The excess weight can cause more strain and stress on the joints health, which in turn will cause the pain. And if your dog already has signs of arthritis, this excess weight can make the situation even worse!

Apart from exercise and keeping your dog active, picking the right food to serve your pet can also help them slim down. One food trick you can follow is to add a little unsweetened and un-canned pumpkin into your dog’s dinner. Pumpkin is rich in vitamins and minerals, which help boost your dog’s immune system and improve overall health. This nutrient-dense food has low-calorie content, as it is 94% water. Likewise, it is a good source of fiber which can help make your dog feel full easily and will help your pet curb their appetite. This is why pumpkin is considered a weight-loss friendly food, for humans and pets alike!

Another trick is to give your pet foods that are high in protein, low in carbohydrates and moderate in fat, and some fruits and vegetables that can be safe for your dog, this can be good for the health of our furry friends as well.

One other effective way to help your dog trim down is to cut down meal portions. Think “tapa” plates! But don’t do it abruptly. Instead, do it gradually. Cut down portions little by little each day until such time you reach the desired portion size. This way, it won’t be hard for your dog to adjust and at the same time, you will feel less guilty feeding your pet less food than they usually eat.

Truly, obese dogs can sometimes look cuter and more adorable than lean ones. But, if you truly consider the negative health effects that your overweight dog is likely to suffer from, you will surely think twice.

Give Your Dog the Right Supplements

Dogs typically receive a good amount of nutrition from their foods, but to ensure they receive the right amount of daily nutrients, a good all-around supplement is suggested. This is especially true for aging dogs. Apart from multivitamin supplements, it also helps to give your dog supplements that support pet joint health.

Omega-3 fatty acid supplements contain powerful fish oils, which offer a potent antioxidant punch. This supplement cannot only help relieve painful joints; it likewise will promote weight loss and prevent/treat other diseases.

The best pet joint supplements are those that contain MSM, glucosamine, and chondroitin. These types of joint supplements help promote a healthy joint and improve joint function while reducing swelling, pain, and stiffness.

Pain and inflammation are not the only problems you need to deal with when your senior dog has a joint disease. You also need to address the root of almost all dog diseases, which is the chronic, hidden inflammation. For this, you will need a joint supplement that contains ingredients that has a rich amount of anti-inflammatory properties like turmeric root. Turmeric is not only beneficial in alleviating low-grade inflammation, it likewise aids in protecting your dogs’ joints and hips, allowing them to enjoy a pain-free, healthier, and happier life.

Make Your Place More Dog-Friendly and Safe

Dogs, even the senior ones, enjoy jumping on different pieces of furniture like tables, sofas, and chairs. Jumping on and off the furniture (most especially the high ones) can take its toll on the joints of your dog. Also, you can read household tips to keep your pets safe. Further, you can prevent your dog from hurting themselves by making it easier for them to get on and off their favorite spot and do things they really love doing.

puppy at home. dog at white

For instance, if your dog loves sitting on the sofa, provide a step or a ramp so they won’t have to exert more pressure on the joints to jump on and off. Also make sure that the ramp or step is not slippery because if it is, it can cause your senior dog to slip or get injured, requiring your pet to exert more foot pressure to avoid a fall, thus making the inflammation and pain worse. A smart idea is to pick a step or ramp with a detachable rubber grip or with carpet attached. This could be a simple DIY project you could install yourself, that will bring long-term benefit to your senior pet.

If you travel with your dog from time to time, it also helps to provide an appropriate ramp or step, making it easier for your pet to get into and out of your vehicle. A folding or carpeted ramp or step is the most ideal option.

Prevention is Better Than an Ounce of Cure

You surely have heard the popular saying “prevention is better than an ounce of cure.” Though you cannot be 100% sure that your pet will not be afflicted with some type of joint problem in the later parts of their life, you can do something to prevent it or at least minimize the risks.

We understand how fulfilling it feels for pet owners to have a very talented puppy… like, “see how high my dog jumps or how fast my dog runs” at a very young age, however, no matter how rewarding this may sound, all these activities have their own risks. Letting your puppy run too hard, jump too high, or exercise too much before their joints and bones are matured enough to handle the excessive motions, can lead to joint injury.

Needless to say, if you want to protect your dog from joint pain and injury now and in their senior age, you should carefully supervise daily exercise routines and don’t allow your pet to do things that can ruin the health of their joints.

Give Your Dog a Mollycoddling Massage

Yes, you read it right! Massage is not only for you but for your beloved pets as well. Massage can help ease pain caused by inflammation, especially for senior dogs. A regular massage can likewise help lower your dog’s risk to various joint and muscle problems, as well as prevent joints and muscle stiffness which is among the contributing factors for arthritis. Not only that, a good massage will help alleviate sore muscles, reduce stress, and lower blood pressure levels for your pet. Try a 5 to 10-minute daily massage, which can help relax and rejuvenate your senior dog.

Giving your dog a mollycoddling massage is not only beneficial for them but also for you! It can also be an effective way to release your stress and tension and to spend quality time with your pet. It is likewise an excellent way to identify what is normal in your dog and what is not.

dog apartment

Massaging your dog on a regular basis enables you to note new lumps, sore areas, or bumps that are unusual. When doing the massage, take note of the different layers of your dog’s body – from their hair to skin, from their fats and muscle down to the bones. See if there are any changes. This also allows you to give more precise information to the veterinarian.

When doing the massage, make sure not to exert sudden or direct force over the inflamed area. Instead, try to warm the tissue first by gently petting the surrounding area. You can then apply gentle compressions (in a pumping motion) over the affected area using your palm. This will help release the tension from the tendons around the joint and move the fluids through the muscles. Finish off by petting the area once again to soothe and relax the nerves.

Lastly, Keep Your Dog Active

Inactivity is one of the contributing factors to joint stiffness and pain. To prevent joint problems in senior dogs, make sure that he or she does not only stay in one place all day long. Encourage your pet to be active and let them move their joints and muscles. Let them exercise or play whenever you are available. Exercise does a body good, in both humans and pets.


Author Bio:

Bobbie is a true entrepreneur. She’s always connecting products and people and building relationships. Her career in media and marketing spans over 20 years, and she has also owned a media agency since 2005. Her ultimate goal was to put together a “dream team” of experts in each of their fields from which support and knowledge could be drawn. This team is dedicated to creating the very best in support nutraceuticals for both humans and pets. More Natural Healing was formed with this goal in mind! It’s not just farm to table, but rather farm to science to a formula, to you.

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Pets On Planes: Avoid These Mistakes While Flying With Your Furry Friends

Flying can be a stressful enough experience without having to load up one of your beloved animals onto the plane. If you’ve ever had to do this, you know how difficult the whole process can be. It can be worrisome to feel, waiting to get your pet off at the other end. Many airlines now allow you to travel with pets, and if you’re relocating abroad or going for an extended stay and don’t want your best friend left behind, it may well be an option you have to consider.

It’s important to remember, however, that flying can be extremely scary for pets, and you should do everything you can to ensure they’re comfortable and happy throughout the trip. It’s easy to overlook crucial details or forget things in the chaos of packing, especially if you’re actually moving, so here are a few tips on things you should avoid to help you make your trip as smooth and easy as possible.

1) Forgetting to Check Veterinary Services at Your Destination

It’s always good to be prepared for the worst, and if the trip proves too stressful for your pet, you ought to have a certain idea of how you can get quick, reliable, and good help at the other end.

Ideally, this means you will have checked out veterinary services before you even consider flying with your pet, and maybe even visited one or two.

You should check the opening hours of your nearest vet, and register your pet with them before you fly. This will ensure you can get quick and easy help if the worst should happen. You should also make sure you have an emergency number if the vet doesn’t offer a 24/7 service, in case you need help outside of office hours.

There’s nothing more stressful than having a poorly pet with nobody to turn to for help, so avoid putting yourself in this position by arming yourself with the relevant information beforehand. This will also help bring you peace of mind before the flight.

2) Failing to Check Airline Policies

Just because you have flown with your pet before doesn’t mean you should ignore this step. Different airlines have very different rules, and you need to make sure you’re clear on what you can and can’t do before you even purchase your tickets, let alone before you get on the plane.

Familiarize yourself with rules about pet carriers and any restrictions on which animals are allowed on board, and check your pet meets all the criteria. “Remember that even if you’re flying with an airline you’ve used before, they might have changed their policies. It would be terrible – and expensive – to get to the airport and then find out that you aren’t able to board because your pet doesn’t meet one of the rules, so make sure this doesn’t happen to you. Printing out policy documents to take with you might prove a wise precaution if you think you’ll run into any issues at the airport” says Eugene Carranza, a Pet blogger at Ox essays and Bigassignments.

3) Not Microchipping Your Pet

If you have a cat or a dog, they ought to be microchipped before you even consider traveling with them. Even a pet that is in a familiar area can get lost if something spooks them, so it’s an important precaution to take at any time, but particularly if you’re traveling. The chances of your pet getting lost in transit are very low, but it could happen, and having a chip will make you vastly more likely to get them back if it does.

Ensuring your pet is chipped prior to travel will also give you one less thing to worry about at the other end, and will reduce your worry about losing your pet due to being in a strange environment. It’s always advisable to keep pets inside/under close supervision after a big change, but this is still a precaution that’s worth taking before you travel. If your pet is already microchipped, do remember to check the chip is fully functional and the information is kept in date so you can recover your pet if it does get lost.

4) Not Checking Vaccination Requirements

This is a really important one, and isn’t specific to particular airlines; your pet must have up to date vaccinations to fly. This does depend to a degree on your destination, but usually, the minimum requirement is a recent rabies vaccination, and there may be others. Some airlines will also have their own requirements, which they should be able to tell you about prior to your flight.

Ensure your pet’s vaccinations are all up to date and that you have evidence with you. Even if your vet has agreed to send copies to the airline in question, it’s always wise to carry a back-up document with your travel papers just in case something has gone wrong. Make sure you have checked all the necessary boxes; it’s important for airlines to be strict when it comes to health and safety, and your pet won’t be allowed to fly otherwise.

5) Forgetting Your Pet’s Health Certificate

Leading on from the last point, remember that your pet must have a health certificate prior to flying. This can be provided by your vet and will let the airline check that your pet’s vaccinations are recent, and that they meet their requirements in terms of breed, age, etc. Be aware that these are generally only valid for 10 days, so if you’re going to need to fly back with your pet after it has expired, you’ll have to make the necessary arrangements while you’re on your trip.

6) Don’t Let Your Pet Travel in the Hold

This is really important, as many airlines do still allow animals in their cargo bays. Unfortunately, this is not safe for the animal, as the bays aren’t temperature controlled, and can be extremely stressful environments with nobody to check on the animal during the flight. They might be suitable storage for suitcases, but you should avoid your pet traveling in them at all costs. There have sadly been recorded instances of fatalities when pets travel in the cargo bay.

If you absolutely cannot avoid this problem, choose your flight with care. Avoiding the busiest times, and trying not to fly in extreme heat or cold. If possible, book direct flights to minimize the stress your pet goes through in terms of transfers, delays, etc. Remember, booking early is more likely to mean you can get cabin space for your pet. Do your utmost not to fly with your pet in the hold if you can.

“Familiarize yourself with the requirements for a pet on board (carrier, leash, etc.) and aim for this as the optimum outcome. It’s always better to have your pet nearby when you’re traveling; you can ensure they’re looked after, and there’s far less chance they will get lost if you are responsible for them” explains Brenda Martin, a pet writer at UK Writings and Revieweal.

7) Flying with an Anxious Pet

If your pet is stressed by change and travel, you should consider whether they really need to fly. If you are just going on holiday, find somebody who is prepared to look after them. Remember that excessive stress can kill an animal, so you should avoid anything which makes them uncomfortable for prolonged periods. In some instances, this may sadly mean re-homing a pet that would be unable to cope with the trip.

If you’re concerned about your pet will managing a flight, talk to your vet. Ask if there’s anything they can prescribe which will help. Try a test journey with your pet. See how they respond and let them experience the busy environment without the plane first.

Make a responsible assessment about what is best for your animal, and try to prioritize their comfort at all times. Many animals are less stressed by car journeys. Consider whether this would be a viable alternative, even if it means a longer trip for you.

Conclusion

Flying with animals isn’t particularly easy, and many people avoid it as much as possible. But sometimes you will have to do it, so it’s best to prepare as much as possible. Think about your pet’s experience, and find out exactly what paperwork you will need well in advance of the flight.

Talk to your vet if you need advice and help, and ask friends if they have any tips. Your airline may also be able to offer some information which will make the process easier for you; do everything you can to get informed and avoid hiccups along the way. Whether you’re going on vacation or moving house, you want to minimize the stress for both yourself and your pet, so research thoroughly, prepare carefully and do your best to ensure you, and your pet both reach the other end calm and happy.


Author Bio:

Nora Mork is a lifestyle journalist at Research paper writer and Speach writing services. She loves doing yoga, attending conferences and writing essays for magazines and blogs, such as Write my UK essay.

 

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Pros and Cons of Hiring a Groomer vs DIY

Some people say that taking care of a dog isn’t much different than taking care of a baby and that’s about right actually. Saying that having a dog isn’t difficult at all would be far from true because it requires responsibility, patience, free time and last but not least money. And since grooming represents one of the more important aspects of properly caring for your dog, it should never be overlooked or neglected.

Since taking your dog over to the professional dog groomer takes a considerable amount of time and they sometimes do charge a lot of money for the provided services, a fair number of dog owners prefer to do the grooming by themselves in the comfort of their own home. Both of these choices aren’t wrong and are perfectly acceptable, but even so, each one has its own set of flaws and downsides as well as advantages and perks. Having said that, it’s important to know what those differences are and how they may affect both you and your dog and that’s precisely why we want to point out all those pros and cons of hiring a professional groomer or doing the job yourself. Well then, let’s begin with the explanations.

Dog Hair Types

Before we start talking about the grooming process and the differences between professional and home grooming, it’s important that we touch on the subject of common hair types because that factor greatly influences the grooming of a dog. Breeds determine which kind of hair the dog will have, and they come in a large number of variants obviously, so subtle distinctions do exist. However, we can split all of them into five major categories, depending on the main characteristic of the hair.

Long Hair

Dogs that have very thick, rich and long hair might be the most demanding kind when it comes to grooming. They must be regularly and adequately brushed, cleaned, dried and occasionally clipped or else they may develop certain health issues and infections. If you take a look at the Collie or an English Setter, you’ll easily notice if they’ve been properly brushed or not. When shedding, they discard an extremely large amount of hair on a daily basis, and if you don’t get rid of it properly and get it all out of the dog’s fur on time, their hair strands will get entangled relatively quickly which will lead to matting and later on, to more serious issues.

If you have a dog with this hair type, make sure to properly trim the hair around the paws and armpits as well as the backside area because these spots tend to get filthy rather fast. Wash the dog with water and a good shampoo when needed but try not to do it too rarely to keep the hair pretty and clean. Excessive bathing isn’t recommended either because that may lead to a shortage of natural oil found on the dog’s hair, thus making the strands sticky and getting them entangled.

Double Coat

These dogs basically have two coats of hair one on top of the other. The lower coat consists of short and densely packed hair while the top coat consists of longer, lighter strands. The first layer provides insulation and allows the dog to feel comfortable in both hot and cold conditions while the upper layer repels water and dirt. Brushing these dogs is a bit bothersome because it’s hard to reach the undercoat and remove the dead hair from it, due to the upper coat blocking the approach. Which is precisely why special de-shedding tools exist, so that these breeds can be adequately brushed.

Wooly Hair

Dogs that have this kind of coating resemble stuffed toys and are quite interesting to look at. Taking care of that pretty hair isn’t easy though, which forces a lot of owners to just cut it instead of brushing and washing it. This isn’t a wise choice; however, because these dogs have gentle skin and the wooly hair actually protects it. Also, once you’ve clipped the coating, it will never again grow like before.

Brushing this hair requires a special brush that’s specifically designed to be used on these dogs and their thick coat. Don’t miss out on this activity because that might lead to matting and then you’ll have no choice but to take your dog to a professional groomer.

Corded Hair

This is a very demanding type of coat when it comes to both brushing and washing. Before it turns into a sort of dreadlocks, this type of hair must be properly taken care of so that it doesn’t become entangled or matted during the cording process. And even though you should keep it as clean as possible at all times, you won’t be able to wash this kind of coat often simply because drying it takes a lot of time and patience.

Wiry Hair

This kind of coating is very similar to corded hair type, and the only thing that separates them from each other is the method of maintenance. You do everything just like you would with the corded hair, brushing and washing it adequately while avoiding clipping if possible. However, to achieve the curly visual appearance, you’ll have to do something that’s called stripping. Stripping is a process in which you gently pull out the strands of hair from the top coat. This produces a manicured coat instead of a swiftly cut one.

DIY Grooming

Now it’s time for us to see what kind of benefits and advantages of home grooming offers. But first, let’s mention the necessary tools you should get before attempting to groom your dog by yourself. First up is the brush and you need it both when you cut the hair and when you don’t because either way you need to get rid of all those loose strands that are stuck to the dog’s coat due to static.

Next comes the comb. You can manage without it, but if you need to cut the hair with scissors, it’s much easier to use the comb first and straighten and separate the hairs you’ll be clipping. Then comes the most important tool, dog hair grooming scissors. Electric clippers make an excellent addition to the regular ones. And the third kind of clippers you’ll be needing are the dog toenail clippers. The rest of the tools consist of dog hair shampoo, ear cleaning solution, detangling products and a couple of old towels.

After getting all of that, it’s time to start grooming. You can take a quick dog grooming course if you wish, but you can also consult the internet instead of to learn the basics.

As far as advantages go, there’s a decent number of them when it comes to home dog grooming. You don’t have to leave your dog with strangers. No traveling means no stress for the dog and more free time for you. You can groom your dog anytime. And last but not least, you’ll be acquiring a new skill which is always a good thing.

Professional Grooming

People who offer professional grooming services are usually very experienced in this field of work, and that is quite possibly the greatest advantage they boast when compared to home grooming. They’ll know how to react in unexpected situations, but more importantly, they’ll know what to do to calm your dog and help it relax. Of course, the fact that they possess a full set of high-quality tools also means a lot. It doesn’t matter what kind of breed your dog is and what type of coating it has, they’ll have the appropriate tools for sure.

So, let’s take a look at the benefits that professional grooming provides. Since the trimming process won’t be taking place in your own house, you won’t have to bother with cleaning and tidying up the place. The groomer will know how to handle all of the wiggling and sudden movements the dog will most likely be doing. They’ll have no problems dealing with complicated coating types or matted areas.

Leave it to the Pros

Removing or cutting the mats by yourself is very dangerous because you can easily hurt the dog, but when a professional does this, there’s practically no risk involved. And since we’re talking about accidental injuries, we can’t overlook nail clipping. When clipping the toenails on a dog, it’s very important to know how and where to cut. Otherwise, you may cut the vein which goes through the nails and causes real discomfort to the dog. Professionals have a lot of experience with this, so they never cut too much and hurt the animal. Lastly, you’ll receive some very useful advice from the groomer, which will help you keep your dog healthy and happy at all times.

Now you know everything you need to know regarding the differences between professional dog grooming and the DIY version of the same thing. They both have their own advantages, but they also have certain downsides. It’s up to you to decide which one suits you and your dog the best and go with that choice.


Author Bio:

Tara Edwards is the founder of Trim Epil, a grooming blog providing lots of useful information and amazing tips/tricks about the topic. There you can read everything about trimming and keeping hairs in check – from the latest grooming trends to honest reviews of the top grooming tools!

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5 Pet Food Brands that Use Enzymes

Enzymes have been administered by veterinarians for years, while they are still relatively new in pet foods. Scientists have been studying their benefits and uses for quite a while. They have given praise to these natural molecules for their positive effects in both humans and animals. Since enzymes can be found living naturally inside of all organisms’ bodies, ingesting them with food is a great way to catalyze the body’s natural performances. Enzymes help to speed up chemical reactions and are easily incorporated into any diet. They have become an increasingly popular trend in aiding in digestion, especially for pets!

Few dispute the benefits that digestive enzymes offer to animals. Increasingly, pet food brands are offering products that advertise enzymes within the food mix, which can directly break down food molecules, helping animals better digest their food and absorb more nutrients. Veterinarians may suggest enzyme-rich foods or enzyme supplements for pets experiencing digestive problems.

Certain brands lead the way in this regard. In the growing U.S. pet food market, these brands have looked to carve out a niche in offering additional value to conscientious consumers who are placing extra consideration on the nutrition of their household pets. These are some brands that use enzymes in their pet food and advertise their benefits to customers.

1. Holistic Select

Holistic Select has been in the business of producing pet food for almost two decades, focusing on providing natural, healthy foods for cats and dogs. The company advertises probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and natural fiber as key ingredients to aid digestion in pets.

The company promotes itself as using guaranteed levels of digestive enzymes in their products with the goal of making sure that household pets receive as much nutrition from their food. Some of the enzymes the company uses include alpha-amylase, protease, and cellulase sourced from Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae. Holistic Select also uses papaya in some of its products, which contains the enzyme papain.

The company offers a range of flavors, including chicken meal, anchovy, lamb meal and more. In addition to these, they also have grain-free options for animals with specific dietary requirements. Grain-free options include meats and meat meals, as well as pulses, such as lentils.

Holistic Select’s marketing clearly put the company forward as a premium pet food producer. Their products suggest a balance of food types, and they even include pâté options in their range. These product names imply additional nutritional value for their intended canine and feline recipients.

2. Nature’s Logic

Nature’s Logic offers both dry and wet food for dogs and cats. Their product range features a variety of meats, including beef, chicken, duck, lamb, rabbit, sardine, turkey and venison. This amount of choice draws a comparison to the selections offered to humans in supermarkets and restaurants. It reinforces the idea that pets are given premium treatment with their options.

Nature’s Logic provides milligram-accurate nutritional information on the vitamins and minerals present in each of its products.

All of Nature’s Logic pet food products include enzymes, which they visibly advertise. They state that their pet foods use “a multi-enzyme blend of plant-based enzymes” including protease, amylase, cellulase, and lipase. A quick analysis of their ingredients lists reveals that they source their enzymes from Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus oryzae, and Trichoderma longibrachiatum.

The protease in Nature’s Logic pet food is an enzyme that catalyzes protein hydrolysis, breaking down long protein chains into their smaller contingent molecules. These smaller molecules are known as amino acids, and the bodies of humans and other animals use them for cell growth and repair.

3. CORE by Wellness

Wellness formed in the 1990s, working alongside veterinarians, animal nutrition experts, and scientists. Their stated goal at the time was to “revolutionize the pet food industry.”

Although Wellness owns several different pet food brands, the CORE brand offers the most comprehensive enzyme-rich options. CORE RawRev is boosted by raw pieces that include extra protein and enzymes for dogs and cats. It is part of a trend towards raw food that offers consumers a safer option by confining the raw food to a sterile bag, minimizing the chance of bacterial infection.

These raw ingredients are freeze-dried, which leaves enzymes in an inactive state. Once exposed to moisture and warmth in the animal’s saliva, the enzymes reactivate and can begin digesting food molecules in the kibble.

CORE by Wellness is a good option for consumers looking to bestow the benefits of enzyme-rich food on their pets while participating in the raw food trend. It has an advantage over other raw meat options in that it remains sterile, thus posing a lower risk.

4. Raw Paws

This relatively new company began operating in 2014 with a stated mission to provide “practical, affordable and accessible” pet food to owners. Even as the market trends towards premiumization, brands are still finding success by marketing value for money.

Raw Paws does maintain a strong emphasis on nutrition and has additional marketing that encourages consumers to think of their pets as natural carnivores. They encourage buyers to consider the impact their pets’ natural feeding habits should have on their diets.

Their range of products is huge, including foods, treats, and chews. Raw Paw does, as their name suggests, provide raw options for pets. Their website offers frozen patties and organs of many varieties, stressing the potential nutritional advantages of raw foods.

Studies suggest that raw food diets are potentially dangerous, both for animals and their owners. Despite this, professional breeders use raw foods in the diets of sled dogs and racing greyhounds for a long time. If kept sterile and given due precaution, there is no reason it cannot be a safe option.

Raw Paws advertises enzymes in some of their treats. They claim to contain five “carefully selected dog digestive enzymes” that restore digestive health.

5. “I and love and you.”

This brand has an original name and primarily advertises its food as grain-free, using sweet potato, garbanzo beans, and lentils instead of rice or wheat. Their quirky image represents their humble beginnings as a pet food store in Boulder, Colorado.

Many of their products contain enzymes, as part of their HAPPY TUMMEEZ marketing, suggesting improved digestion for pets. Their “NUDE FOOD” product line contains enzymes that “I and love and you” purports help deal with more pronounced digestive issues.

“I and love and you” has a wide catalog of products in multiple lines catered to both cats and dogs. Their basic approach emphasizes the idea that their pet food is natural and healthy. Their marketing makes references to superfoods and premium ingredients, indicating that the brand is part of the broader movement towards premiumization in the pet food industry.

Trends and Observations

Most brands advertising enzymes in their products gear themselves more towards the premium end of the market. This potentially means they can achieve higher mark-ups on a per-product basis, partially by including enzyme blends or using other enzyme sources in their pet food.

The prevalence and prominence of advertising enzymes suggest consumers view the inclusion of enzymes positively. Despite this, there still appears to be relatively few brands that use enzymes in pet food. This suggests there may be a gap in the growing U.S. pet food market that other companies can fill.

Pet Foods for The Future

The future of pet food looks positive, as current trends show improved consciousness towards better quality products. Many brands have been improving their food’s nutritional components. Leading consumers to know what is in their pet’s food by making the facts readily available on their product’s label. Protein hydrolyzing enzymes are one of the most popular ways companies are working towards better products, since they increase pets’ ability to absorb nutrients in the food they are consuming. As we look into the future, there is a greater chance we will see more enzymes in pet food. An increase in market share, are all in the name of better pet health.

This trend has taken a positive upswing for pet owners on a multitude of levels. Beyond the food, they’re starting to become more aware of how different components of a dog’s lifestyle affects their overall health. Specifically, it is becoming increasingly prominent among veterinarians to promote higher quality food choices in an effort to stop diseases and other issues in dogs. Owners can be especially thankful for this, as a healthier dog means less future vet bills and costly medications. Above all, healthier pets are going to lead to longer and more meaningful lives!

Conclusions

In recent years, nutrition has become a greater priority for humans as well as their pets. It is becoming increasingly more important to feed both ourselves and our furry friends with the right foods. Digestion is certainly no exception to this trend, as shown by the large upswing in brands offering higher quality food products with digestive-friendly compounds.

The booming U.S. pet food industry, which is currently valued at $25 billion, with a projected increase to $30 billion by 2022, shows no signs of slowing down. With an increased focus on healthier options, especially with enzymes; manufacturers are doing research to find new ways to properly feed their pets. The future of pet foods remains uncertain. But if one thing’s for sure, it’s that our furry friends are getting the attention and quality ingredients they deserve!


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