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July Newsletter 2018

Vital Visits News, Tips, and Fun!
 

Vital Visits Pup and Person Info!

Happy Holiday!

Don’t leave your dog in your car even with the windows slightly open, it gets too hot for your dog in minutes.

Make sure inside or out, your pets have plenty of fresh water and some shade.

Keep your dog’s paws cool, asphalt is HOT.

Protect your dog from fleas and ticks.

Don’t leave your dog or cat unsupervised around a pool.

 

July Tips For Pets and People

Fireworks: We mention this every year, and it’s worth a quick repeat. Here are several ideas to get your terrified pet through fireworks season.

  • Turn on soothing music or white noise.
  • Never punish your pet for being afraid.
  • Try distracting them with a game or toy.
  • A Thunder Shirt works for many pets.
  • Cuddling often helps.
  • Don’t change your routines and stay calm. Your dog will pick up on your mood.
  • If your pets are beyond help talk to your vet about anti-anxiety medications.
  • Be sure your pet has an ID tag and is microchipped. More pets go missing on the 4th of July than any other day of the year.

Disaster Preparedness: A disaster can happen in the blink of an eye. If you prepare ahead, you’ll be ready and organized when disaster strikes.

  • Each pet needs ID tags and a microchip.
  • Prepare an emergency kit for each pet. It should contain food, medications, vet info, treats, extra leashes, poopy bags, bowls, can opener, spoon, blankets, water, litter, and crates or carriers.
  • Find pet-friendly shelters before a disaster happens.
  • Know where the closest emergency veterinary hospital is.
  • Get a red Rescue Alert Sticker for your home.

Coyotes: Did you know that coyotes live in every single state except Hawaii? They are even found in NYC! They tend to thrive around people because they eat our left out pet food, birdseed, and get into our trash. Sadly coyote attacks on our pets are on the rise and not just on tiny friends. Although it rarely happens, they have attacked people too. Here are tips to keep us all safe.

  • Don’t feed wildlife.
  • Don’t leave food out for your pets or feed them outside.
  • Don’t let your cat or dog out unattended.
  • Close gaps under your porch or deck – that area makes a perfect den for coyote moms.
  • Make your yard less attractive to coyotes. Keep bushes trimmed to reduce cover, install fences, and use motion triggered deterrents like lights or a sprinkler system.
  • If you see a coyote in your yard (and you’re not at risk), be annoying, make your yard a place they don’t want to hang out. Clap your hands, toss rocks near it, make loud noises (with an airhorn available at marine stores), shine a flashlight in their eyes, or spray them with a hose. But don’t put yourself in danger.
  • If your pet gets a coyote bite, they will require immediate veterinary attention.
  • Again, don’t leave your pet outside unattended.

Fast Food For Your Pet: Hitting the drive-thru with your dog? Then head to these places, and your pup won’t be left out.

  • Starbucks: they have a Puppuccino at all locations.
  • Tim Hortons: ask for the sugar-free Timbits.
  • Johnny Rockets: many locations have doggie hamburgers and ice cream. All locations have fresh water on request.
  • In-N-Out: their Pup Patty is a salt-free burger.
  • Shake Shack: they go above and beyond with the Pooch-ini which has vanilla custard, peanut butter, and dog biscuits. Or, ask for the Bag of Bones which contains 5 of those specially made dog biscuits.
  • Sonic: they have dog treats at the window.
  • Sprinkles: they make cupcakes for your dog.
  • Dairy Queen: they have always had a pup cup.
  • Chick-Fil-A: always has dog treats at the drive-thru, ask for them.

Although these are retail stores, it’s good to know they love pets too.

  • Saks Fifth Avenue stores: they LOVE pets and have always been very pet-friendly.
  • Apple stores: Apple is its own universe, and they love pets, rumor has it…. they have even welcomed goats!

Enjoy your summer with your pet!!

 

Your Cat Can Safely Enjoy Outdoor Time

We all know that cats enjoy the outdoors, but they really should not be allowed outside on their own. The average lifespan of a free-roaming cat is 3 years, whereas an indoor cat can live for 12+ years. Since most cats are very interested in the world outside their windows, here are some suggestions so you and your cat can safely get outdoors this season.

Leash and Harness: It’s not hard to teach a cat to walk outside with a leash and harness (don’t use a collar, they can slip off). With a kitten, if you start them early, they will get the hang of it quickly. With an older cat, it just takes patience and persistence.

Cats usually start by lying down and not moving. That’s ok, pet and treat them for giving it a shot. The next step is usually slinking or belly crawling around. Tell them how smart they are and treat them frequently, make it fun. This is going to take a little time, but don’t ever drag them or force them to walk. Eventually, they will get brave enough to move around. Use the lightest leash you can find, cats don’t like “leash drag!”

While your cat may never walk like a dog (some do!), you will be able to go out in your yard and enjoy some outdoor time with them. Never tie them up and leave them alone, that’s a recipe for disaster.

Wheeled Walker or Pet Stroller: This is an excellent way for you both to get out and get moving. Your cat is safe in an enclosed screened stroller where they can sit or lie down and watch the world go by. You get a bit of fresh air and exercise! This article goes over a number of the “best” pet strollers.

Catio: Catios have really taken off. They are the latest in porches for your cat. They protect your cat from vehicles, predators, and disease. They protect your local wildlife and birds from the hunting instincts of your cat, which means everyone wins!

A Seattle based company you’re not in their area, no problem, they have a variety of Catio plans that you can build yourself.

Catio Spaces designs and builds Catios. If Catios come in all sizes, from tiny window sized spaces to elaborate and large Catios for multiple cats (and people). Either way, your cat will love their Catio! Even better this company gives 10% of each sale to an animal welfare organization. This is a great way to give your cat outdoor time in a safe and enriching environment.

Get some fresh air with your cat and enjoy the summer weather together!

 

Not All Dogs Are Swimmers!

You may think dogs are natural swimmers, that’s not always true. Although most dogs will instinctively dog paddle in water that doesn’t mean they can actually swim or even keep their cute black noses above water!

We all know of dogs that can’t wait to dash into the lake, Labradors and Golden Retrievers are excellent examples of pups that are hard to keep out of the water. But other canines may dislike water, or worse, not have the body structure of a swimmer. Many of the dogs that don’t do well in the water are vertically challenged, top heavy, or have short, stocky legs.

Even if you own one of these breeds and they like the water, you need to keep a very close eye on them and keep them out of deep water. These breeds will have a difficult time keeping their heads above water for any length of time; their body just works against them.

The best idea is to buy them a life jacket for extra protection if you’re going to have them around water. But keep them in sight in shallow water, even with a life jacket.  Every dog that goes boating should have a life jacket on for safety, regardless of how accomplished a swimmer they are.

If you own a dog that should be a good swimmer and you want to get them comfy in the water, go slowly. Most vets will recommend they start with a life jacket. Go to a shallow spot, get them wet and give it a shot. Get in the water a bit yourself and play with them. Toss a ball in just a few feet and praise them when they go in, even just a tiny bit. Get them comfy and confident in the water. If your dog has a friend that loves water go to the beach with them, it could help your pooch get the hang of this water thing (but of course keep your eye on them both).

Water-loving breeds: Labrador Retriever, Golden Retriever, Standard Poodle, Newfoundland, Portuguese Water Dog, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, and English and Irish Setters are among the best swimmers.

Pups that are more landlubbers: Chihuahua, Yorkshire Terrier, Pug, Pekingese, Bull Terrier, Pembroke Welsh Corgi, ShihTzu, Pomeranian, Maltese, Greyhound, Dachshund, French Bulldog, Basset Hounds, and even a Boxer.

So, if your dog is a swimmer enjoy the summer but be safe, even Olympic swimmers get tired. If not, you can both sit by the shore and enjoy the breeze!

 

Great Pet Links!

Here are some interesting pet articles, pictures, and videos we’ve found on the net this month.

 
 
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