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November Newsletter 2017

Vital Visits News, Tips, and Fun!

Vital Visits Pup and Person Info!

Thanksgiving is on the horizon!

    • Now Hiring Pet Sitters, Dog Walkers and Overnight Pet Sitters For weekly and weekend work! If you know anyone that may be interested send them this link to Apply. Thank you!
  • Book your holiday vacations now!

Thanksgiving Pet Safety

Thanksgiving is a time for family, friends, and pets but it comes with some dangers for our best friends. It’s a good time to review the basics.

  • People will be going in and out of your home so be certain your pet doesn’t escape. Have their ID tags up-to-date and be sure they are microchipped.
  • Keep the people food away from your pet. A lot of holiday food is fatty (butter, bacon, gravy) and can make your dog or cat ill. Fatty food can cause pancreatitis up to 4 days after they ingest it. Pancreatitis is very serious and can be fatal.
  • Supervise kids around your pets. Nobody likes tail pulling!
  • Don’t leave the trash unattended or open.
  • Review the foods that are poisonous to dogs and cats. For example raisins, currants, grapes, chocolate, and xylitol (see link at the end of article).
  • Don’t feed your pets any desserts.

Include your pets in the festivities with these ideas:

  • Take a walk or two with guests and your dog. It’s a holiday loaded with calories, walking will help burn them off.
  • Enlist your guests to play a few indoor games with your cat. Toss a ball in the backyard for your dog.
  • If you want to share pieces of your meal, try plain turkey, a bit of sweet potato, carrots, or green beans mixed in with their regular dinner. Best with no seasonings.

Here’s to a pawsitively perfect Thanksgiving for every one of your guests!Here is a bit more info:

Foods That are Poison to Animals
Thanksgiving Pet Safety


Uh-oh, Incoming Unknown Dog!

Being approached by a loose dog, especially when yours is on a leash, can be a nerve-wracking experience. Every situation is different, and each requires an on the spot risk assessment. Here are a few tips that might help with the next roaming dog you encounter:

  • Avoid the situation. If you know of specific homes that often let their dogs wander, walk a different route.
  • Loosen up on your dog’s leash. This sounds counterproductive but a tight leash telegraphs to both dogs you’re nervous, and it will make them nervous.
  • Hang a U-ie. If you see an unattended dog down the street casually do a U-turn with your dog. Try and get a barrier between you and the approaching dog: a parked car, a fence, go up on a porch or inside a business.
  • Use treats. Food will help keep your dog focused on you instead of the loose dog.
  • Try calming signals. Dogs see these “signals” as conflict avoidance: avoiding eye contact, yawning, and lip licking. Keeping your dog calm will go a long way in keeping the approaching dog calm.
  • Be assertive. Try saying no, go home, or sit. Hold your hand out in the universal stop symbol. Turn sideways to the approaching dog. If you’re terrified, call 911.
  • An umbrella scares many dogs and physically helps keep them away from you and your dog.
  • Treat tossing. Take a handful of treats and toss them at the dog coming at you.
  • Air horn. If a dog is intent on attacking this won’t stop them, but if it’s just a curious dog, it might work. They sell pocket-sized air horns, and they honk quite loudly. This may cause the loose dog to turn tail and run the other way.
  • Walking stick. The goal with a stick isn’t to harm the other dog but to intimidate it. Slap the stick on the ground or whirl it through the air. Some dogs may see this as a challenge so make this a last resort.
  • Deterrent spray. Mace or pepper spray has a large drift area, so it’s actually easy to end up getting the spray on yourself, so use them as a last resort. Citronella-based sprays work well too.

Remain calm and avoid routes where you know there are loose dogs out.


Fun Pet Holidays in November

Adopt a Senior Pet Month
Pet Diabetes Month
Manatee Awareness Month

November 1 – National Cook for Your Pet Day
November 5-11 Bird Health Awareness Week
November 17 – National Take a Hike Day
November 23 – Thanksgiving


Night-time Meowing!

Is your cat waking up the entire neighborhood every night with their vocalizations? This cat behavior is unfortunately common, especially in older cats.

Step number one is to be sure there isn’t a medical problem, so next time you visit your vet talk to them about the meowing, especially if the meowing occurs at all times of the day. Your cat may be in some pain or discomfort. Sometimes older cats meow loudly because their hearing isn’t as acute as it once was. If your cat gets a clean bill of health then try these suggestions:

  • Your cat’s internal hunting clock needs to be reset. Start feeding your cat later in the evening (try just before bed) and see if that makes a difference.
  • If your cat is hungry, you can purchase a timed feeder that dispenses food a few times each night.
  • Don’t get in the habit of feeding your cat when they demand it; they might be meowing to wake you up for a snack.
  • Make sure your cat has water at all times.
  • Although cats sleep a lot they need periods of high activity so maybe your cat is bored. Give them a few intense play times during the day and try and keep them awake more often.
  • Your kitty may be lonely or insecure. Often if they can access your room, they will feel safer, and the meowing will stop.
  • It could be hormones! Make sure your cat is spayed or neutered.
  • Sometimes adding a playmate helps, consider a second cat.

Let’s hope these suggestions result in a good nights rest for everyone. Earplugs may be a last resort!


Great Pet Links!

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

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