Searching High and Low has never been easier!

One day my family’s black lab, Trouble, went missing. We lived in the countryside and it wasn’t unusual for our dogs to wander around our property, but she had been gone for the majority of the day. Trouble was over ten years old and we were concerned about where she could be, we searched the whole neighborhood, calling her name for hours. Well, wouldn’t you know it, we found her, and she had snuck into my father’s tool shed somehow and managed to close the door behind her! She was so happy to be “reunited” with us after a day stuck in the shed! Thankfully that is the only time I’ve ever had to worry about where my pet was.

It would be an understatement to say that technology has changed vastly since that day many years ago. For pet owners, there are many devices that can be used to help locate their lost pets. A new product that is not only helpful, but unique is Hi&Lo Pet Recovery Tags. You can visit their website here.

Hi&Lo Recovery Tags are unique in that they can not only help you recover your pet, but will enable you to access your pet’s information quickly and easily. The neat thing about the tag is that it includes a QR (quick response) code, as well as a unique tag number. This enables an individual who finds your lost pet to scan the QR code, which will retrieve the pet’s profile, or to login online and enter the tag number through the Hi&Lo website. The pet’s profile will include the owner’s contact information, so this should enable the person who finds the pet to get them back home quickly and easily!

Another nifty feature of the Hi&Lo tags, is that through the QR code, “you can have all of your pet’s important information available at the drop of a hat.” This information can include veterinary information, allergies, brand of food, vaccination records, etc. If you are traveling with your pet, there is no longer a need to carry around a file with all their information.

As brought out on their website, “the biggest benefit to having this information available is to allow good Samaritans who find your missing pet to find you and help care for your pet in the mean time! You also have the ability to set which information is visible to the public.”

What do you think of the Hi&Lo Recovery Tags? Have you used them? Would you be interested in getting them?

Adopt, Don’t Shop! Humane Society of Charlotte Caring for Puppy Mill Dogs!

No doubt, if you live in Charlotte and the surrounding area you’ve heard about the puppy mill bust that occurred on June 12. Animal control officers, visited a Rutherford County home on June 9, acting on a tip for suspicion of a puppy mill being run on the property.

On June 12th, the HSC Emergency Response Team was asked to assist the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office in rescuing fifty-six dogs from the property. The dogs were found in poor living conditions, with severe matting, dental problems, and other health concerns.

Since being rescued, each dog has received medical attention, including heartworm medication, dental cleanings, drawing blood for tests, and exams. Roughly 30 of the dogs will stay at the Humane Society in Charlotte, with the rest going to partner rescue organizations.

The problem faced is with puppy mills, they mass breed, which leads to neglect. Many dogs are used as breeders and given minimal care and the puppies are sold quickly for a profit. Generally, the dogs have never been groomed. The dogs are not viewed as animals to be cared for, but as a means to make money.

What can you do to help these animals?

  • Adopt, don’t shop! Puppy mills are inhumane commercial dog-breeding facilities that may sell puppies in pet stores, online, or directly to the public (in flea markets or via classified ads). There are countless animals that need homes, and can be adopted from the Humane Society as well as other rescue organizations.
  • Donate! The Humane Society and rescue groups are always in need of assistance, whether it be monetarily or through donated goods. You can find a list of items the Humane Society needs here.
  • Foster! Have you considered becoming a foster for pets in need? Fosters are valuable to the Humane Society helping more animals find homes. Read up on becoming a foster here.

Hopefully, in time, we won’t have to hear stories like this one! We hope that as a community we can have a full share in helping homeless animals find their fur-ever homes!

Raw Food Diet For Pets

iStock_000013572263_SmallLately, I’ve been hearing a lot about “raw food” diets for pets. It’s something that I didn’t really know very much about, but found some really helpful information here and here.

Raw dog food diets have become widely popular, and the interest in them is increasing. They emphasize raw meat, bones, fruits and vegetables as the staples of a dog’s diet. These diets are based on the “fact” that dogs and cats evolved as carnivores eating raw foods.

A raw dog food diet would typically consist of:

  • Muscle meat, many times still on the bone
  • Bones, whole or ground
  • Organ meat, like livers or kidneys
  • Raw eggs
  • Vegetables, like broccoli, spinach and celery
  • Apples, other fruits
  • Dairy, such as yogurt

The potential benefits of such a diet include:

  • Shinier coat
  • Healthier skin
  • Cleaner teeth
  • Higher energy
  • Smaller stool

The potential risks of such a diet are:

  • Exposure to bacteria in raw meat for human and dog health
  • Unbalanced diet that may harm the health of dogs if given for an extended period
  • Possibility of bones to choke an animal, break teeth or cause an internal puncture

Have you ever tried, or would you try a raw food diet? If you have tried one, what was your experience? Would you recommend it?

Cats and Medication

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Anyone have a cat that “LIKES” to take their medication? Yeah, I know, cats love taking pills about as much as they like taking bubble baths. I cannot tell you how often we have someone ask if we have any tricks for getting a kitty to take their medication. Between experience and some research we have a few tips for you!

Pill Pockets – these are treats with a built-in pouch to easily hide pills! That’s right, your kitty probably won’t even realize they are taking their meds! So instead of making pill time a stressful occurrence, it can be a treat time for your kitty.

Canned Food “Meatballs” – canned food can be a great treat for a kitty and can disguise a pill much in the same way a pill pocket does. Making up a tiny “meatball” and give the kitty one or two undoctored meatball treats, followed by one with the pill and then one more un-doctored. This method works since the cat will continue to take the treats even if there is a small taste of the medicine.

*These methods only work if the medication can be taken with food, so be sure to check with your veterinarian before using these methods.

Pet Supply stores often have in stock pill shooters. They are somewhat like a syringe. At the end of the syringe is a soft, rubber, pill holder, which will allow you to gently press the plunger of the syringe. It then shoots the pill into the animals mouth.hqdefault

Keep calm! Kitties are sensitive to nervousness. Never try to medicate a cat that is excited or nervous.

To Insert The Pill – 1) Apply gentle pressure in the space between the teeth to open the mouth. OR place your thumb and middle finger at the hinge of the jaw and gently pry open the mouth. 2) As the cat’s mouth opens, press down on the lower jaw and deposit the pill well to the back of the tongue. 3) Close the mouth and massage or rub the throat until the cat swallows. Tip! Blowing softly into the cat’s nose or face will also cause many cats to gulp or swallow. If the kitty licks his nose, it is likely the pill has been swallowed.

Important! Avoid breaking up pills, when broken the powder may have an unpleasant taste that is usually poorly accepted. Many pills have a protective coating that is important, as they aid in a delayed reaction in the intestinal tract.

Do you have any tips or tricks to get your kitty to take a pill? What methods have you found to have success?

Pet Palooza to benefit HSC

Pet Palooza is back!

Where: Independence Park (300 Hawthorne Lane)

When: Saturday April 18, 2015 @10-3 pm

Who: You and your four legged friends!

What: 2K Dog Walk & Festival

Details:  Free to attend.  To register for the walk & for more information, go to www.http://humanesocietyofcharlotte.org/hsc-in-the-community/pet-palooza/  

All proceeds help HSC to provide critical services like low-cost spay/neuter, vaccine and microchip clinics, adoptions, and owner/pet training and education to over 15,000 homeless & at-need pets in our community every year!  

 

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VENDOR FAIR with over 80 Local Organizations and Businesses

LIVE MUSIC by GROWNUP AVENGER STUFF & GOGOPILOT paw_print FOOD TRUCKS paw_print BEER & WINE GARDEN 

  AGILITY & PET CPR DEMOS paw_print $15 PET MICRO-CHIPPING 

PALM & PAW READINGS paw_print PEOPLE & PET MASSAGE

 PET ADOPTION FAIR paw_print DOG CONTESTS paw_print PAW PRINT PAINTINGS

6th Annual Charlotte Tradeshow Expo

When: 5.30.2015 at 10-6 PM

Where: Charlotte Trade Show Expo (7100 Statesville Road Charlotte, North Carolina 28269).

Who: Shop, Learn, Play & Adopt with tons of exhibitors!

Free admission & parking–bring your pets!

 http://www.charlottepetexpo.com/

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  • Tons of Exhibitors
  • Fabulous Prize Giveaways & Fun for both the Two-Legged AND Four-Legged
  • Adopt! Dozens of Rescue Groups and a Mega-Adoption Event
  • Discounted Vaccinations, Microchipping and Heartworm & Flea Preventatives
  • Free Nail Trims
  • Agility Demonstrations
  • Live Entertainment, ObedienceDemonstrations, AuthorReadings/Book Signings
  • The Latest & Greatest Pet Products
  • Learn About Pet Care, Volunteerism, Grooming, Pet Behavior & Training, Traveling with your Pet,  How YOU Can Make a Difference, Different Types of Pets/Breeds, Veterinarian FAQ, Fun Activities for You & Your Pet
  • Contests & SO MUCH MORE!

 

Keeping Pets Safe During Natural Disasters

iStock_000020557456_SmallA few years ago, August of 2011 to be exact, my small home town in upstate New York was hit by Hurricane Irene, by the time the storm reached us she was downgraded to a tropical storm, but we felt her effects none the less. We were so far from the coast in a mountainous region that the thought of having hurricane weather was so abnormal. Thankfully, my home, although damaged, was not destroyed, and my family and pets were all safe.

Hurricane and Natural Disaster preparedness has become the norm for many families. But what measures can we take to be prepared for our pets? Some helpful tips were brought out in This article that we wanted to share with you!

  • Don’t wait for mandatory evacuation, especially homes with multiple pets. There is too much stress involved with waiting until the last minute to leave, so give yourself time to get everyone to safety.
  • Rehearse mock evacuations with your pets. It may seem silly, but if the day comes that a real evacuation has to be performed, the experience will keep you calmer.
  • Give a set of house keys to a trusted neighbor. If you are not home and a disaster strikes, they can get your pets to safety.
  • Pack and have ready a few disaster-preparedness bags. Having multiple bags will be helpful, one in your vehicle, near your entrance/exit and your bedroom, so they are easily accessible. Supplies to include in such a kit would be: food and water supply for three to seven days, pet first aid kit, a flashlight, radio, batteries, matches, and saline.
  • Store current medications for each pet in separate, resealable plastic bags, so they are easy to grab in an emergency. Each bag should be clearly marked with the pet’s name and include a write up of the medication schedule.
  • A safe escape-proof carrier to transport cats and small pets should be easily accessible in an emergency. They should be large enough to be comfortable for the pet, and have a small towel or blanket to provide security and shade.
  • An emergency fund to cover last-minute housing in a veterinary hospital or shelter, if necessary.

With advanced planning and an escape route, you, your family and furry, feathered, or scaled friends – can make it through safely. Do you have any tips to get through a natural disaster? Have you prepared a “go bag?”

Keeping Dogs Cool in the Summer Heat

 The summer heat isn’t really waiting for summer to make its presence known, now is it? I think many of us enjoy the fact we have air conditioning to keep us cool, a pool to take a dip in, or perhaps a nice shady spot under a tree to relax. All of this was making me think of our pups and how we can help them escape from the heat.

Dogs are built very differently than we are. They have very few sweat glands, which means they do sweat from their paw pads and less furry areas of their bodies, however, the primary way your pooch cools off is through panting. Panting is quick, shallow breathing that increases the evaporation of water from the mouth, tongue and upper respiratory tract.

Something quite amazing is that your pup can take 300 to 400 breaths per minute while panting. The normal canine breathing rate is 30 to 40 breaths per minute, so while panting they are taking in 10 times more breaths! Impressive, right?

It is worth noting dogs are very easily overheated, despite their nifty panting trick, and can be prone to heat stroke in hot weather, especially when the humidity is high. Dogs with short muzzles and rounded heads are especially heat-intolerant, breeds that are affected by this include English Bulldogs, Pugs, Boston Terriers, French Bulldogs, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Shih Tzus to name a few.

So what can we, loving dog owners do to help our pups escape the “dog days of summer?” Some simple tips that we can take include:

  • Getting exercise early in the morning or late at night when the temps are cooler, and keeping the intensity of the walks calmer than you may in the cooler months of the year.
  • If unable to get walks in during the early or late hours and you have to face the heat of the middle of the day, get your pup a pair of doggie boots! Seriously! Doggie boots help protect their paws, which absorb and release heat. Surfaces like cement and asphalt can be especially hot, this gives your pup a more comfortable walk.
  • A hydrated pup is a happy pup! Carry a water bottle for your pup when you take a walk, and take a break so they can get a refreshment. It is worth noting darker coats absorb more heat than lighter coats, so keep that in mind while out in the sun. Overweight dogs face a higher risk of dehydration as well.
  • No AC? No problem! Get creative! Set up a kiddie pool with cool water or ice in a shady spot for your pup to “chill out.” Pun intended! A sprinkler in the yard can be great as well! We liked to run through them as kids, your pup will have a blast with it. In the home you can set up a fan with a pan of ice in front of it to set off a cool blast.
  • Never leave your dog in a parked car. Temperatures in a car can skyrocket compared to the external temp, even with the windows cracked open. As the saying goes, better safe than sorry!

We hope everyone has a safe and fun summer, especially enjoying the company of our best furry friends!

What about you, do you have any great tips or tricks to keep your pup cool? Have you had success with any of the above suggestions?