Tag Archives: happy

February is Pet Dental Health Month

February is Dental MonthYou clearly recognize the importance and benefits of having a mouth full of healthy teeth and gums, so why the lack of interest when it comes to pet’s dental health? A lack of regular and attentive care can result in serious health implications for your pet. Studies show that pets that don’t receive regular dental care can suffer from heart, kidney and liver problems.

Pets that struggle with poor dental health exhibit the following signs and symptoms:

  • Bad breath
  • Red, swollen and or bleeding gums
  • Yellow-brown deposits like cement along the gum line or on the crowns
  • Becoming a picky eater
  • Eating on one side and dropping food
  • Rubbing face on the ground, pawing at the mouth and drooling
  • Personality change, irritability and depression

People often underestimate the prevention and maintenance steps required to maintain their pet’s oral health.  Pets should have their teeth brushed on a regular basis.

For the best dental care results, try the following tips and tricks:

  1. Dental care is critical for your pet’s health. If you are not able to brush your dog’s teeth, there are other options when you’re in between vet visits. Consider using oral brushing-dogs-teethrinses that are formulated for dogs and/or cats.
  2. Never use human toothpaste because the foaming agents can pose health risks to pets.
  3. Do not give your pet any type of candy, ever! Like chocolate, sorbitol-sweetened candy is toxic to dogs. Regular candy is bad for your pet’s teeth (and yours!).
  4. Some toys, like nylon tennis balls, can erode the crowns of your dog’s teeth, so look for toys that provide some protection, like durable rubber toys.
  5. While many brands of dry pet food incorporate dental benefits, giving your pet special dental treats formulated to reduce tartar, plaque build-up and stains is another option to help prevent oral health problems. Many people give their dogs a bone or rawhide as a way to help keep their teeth clean. While these can help keep your pets’ teeth clean, they may also cause tooth fractures, or result in your pet ingesting bone shards. Keep an eye on your pets when they are chewing these products to ensure that they don’t choke on any pieces that may have broken off. Ask our Healthy Pet Care Specialists for assistance in selecting the right product and size of bone or chew for your pet.
  6. Contact your veterinarian if you note changes in your pet’s behaviour or health. The following usually indicates an issue that must be addressed by a professional: your pet stops eating, they have bad breath, they are drooling excessively, their gums are inflamed, or their teeth are visibly damaged or they’ve lost a tooth (or teeth).   NOTE: Failure to obtain professional care for your pet’s dental problems can result in serious health problems.

Looking after pets’ teeth and gums is one key factor in keeping them healthy and happy for many years. You’ll find a wide variety of new and improved dental products for cats and dogs in your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store. Our Healthy Pet Care Specialists are happy to provide assistance with managing your pets’ oral health.

We want to see your pet’s smile!cats-teeth-february-2017

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Filed under Cats, Dental Care, Dogs, Education, Grooming, Healthy Pets, love, Pet Care, Pet Food, pet safety, Uncategorized

Halloween Can Be Scary For Dogs & Cats

dog-on-front-stoop-with-pumpkinsHalloween can be a wonderful time for both kids and the adults!  But for pets?  The night can become a nightmare. Please ensure that they’re well protected (safe and happy)!

Keep your pets away from the stress and dangers tonight with the tips noted below:

  • Walk your dog before the trick-or-treating starts. Keep a firm grip on the leash because many dogs are frightened by people in costumes.
  • Keep dogs indoors. It’s just not a good idea to leave dogs out in the yard during trick-or treating.   Most dogs are likely to bark and howl at the constant flow of treat-or-treaters.
  • Find a safe and secure place in your home to keep your dogs, especially if you’re giving out candy to trick-or-treaters. Many dogs will try to get loose when they hear the doorbell or when the door opens and the presence of little kids and adults in costumes is scary for many animals, which may result in them running away.
  • Make sure your dog is wearing an up-to-date ID tag to ensure that you can be reunited in the event they do run off.
  • If your dog has a habit of breaking free from a confined space or someone lets them out, place a dog gate in front of your front door to block access to the kids. Many dogs will run after trick-or-treaters.
  • If your dog has any aggressive tendencies, has a fear of loud noises, or a habit of excessive barking, place him in a quiet room as far away from your front door as possible and at least a half-hour the before trick-or-treaters arrive.
  • You may want to consider crating your pet upstairs, downstairs or in the farthest room from the front door, which can make her feel more secure and reduce the chance of an accidental escapes. Provide chew toys, a favorite blanket, a piece of clothing with your scent on it, etc. Play soft music or a recording of soothing sounds.
  • If you feel that your dog is fine to be near the front door to greet the trick-or-treaters, keep him on leash. Some pets will become very stressed by holiday activities and changes in their normal routine. A nervous dog might feel threatened and growl, lunge or bite at the kids and adults at the door, which can damper the fun for everyone.
  • All cats should be kept indoors at all times during Halloween night
  • Ensure that all candles, jack-o-lanterns, decorations or ornaments are put safely out of reach of your pets. If they’re quite curious and tend to gravitate to these items, refrain from decorating with them.
  • Some pets are afraid of wearing Halloween costumes. Further, costumes can present safety and health hazards for dogs, so think twice before dressing them up. Ensure that your pet can breathe, see and hear, and that the costume is flame retardant. Remove any small or dangling pieces that may be chewed and swallowed. Avoid rubber bands, as these may cut off your pet’s circulation or, can burrow and cut into their skin.
  • If your pet is very high-strung, visit your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store and speak to one of our Healthy Pet Care Specialists to see what products and supplements can help calm them for the night.bowl-of-halloween-candy
  • Keep all pets away from of the candy bowl. Throw away all candy wrappers so that you pets can’t get at them, since the wrappers can cause choking or intestinal obstruction, and make sure that your dog can’t get into the trash. NOTE: Chocolate contains theobromine, which can cause nerve damage and even death in dogs. The darker the chocolate, the more concentrated it is — and the smaller the lethal dose.
  • Explain to everyone in your home, especially your children, just how dangerous treats are to pets. Put your children’s candy out of reach of your pets. Remind your children about leaving candy wrappers on the floor.
  • Unfortunately, the sidewalks and grass tend to be littered with pieces of candy or wrappers the day after Halloween. When walking your dog during or after Halloween, be on the look-out for this as this may present a choking hazard for him.

Chocolate can be very harmful for pets.  In fact, chocolate poisoning can even result in death.  Chocolate is made from cocoa, and cocoa beans contain caffeine and a related chemical compound called theobromine, which can be fatal for your pets if ingested.

Theobromine is in the same family as caffeine and is a type of stimulant which stimulates the central nervous system, cardiovascular system, and causes a slightly increased blood pressure.  Pets cannot metabolize theobromine as quickly as humans can which is why it has such dangerous and toxic side effects for them.

Unsweetened baker’s chocolate contains about 390 milligrams of theobromine per ounce, about ten times more than milk chocolate and more than twice as much as semi-sweet chocolate. White chocolate contains very little theobromine.  One ounce of milk chocolate per pound of body weight is potentially lethal.

The real danger lies with dark chocolate.  Darker chocolate contains higher levels of theobromine which means it`s more poisonous for dogs. Just 2.25 ounces of baking chocolate could potentially kill a 22-pound dog, while the danger levels for milk chocolate is 20 ounces, and semi-sweet chocolate can be very toxic at 10 ounces. Serious toxic reactions can occur with ingestion of about 100 to 150 milligrams of theobromine per kilogram of body weight.

Dogs may exhibit the symptoms following within 1 – 4 hours of eating chocolate (particularly dark chocolate) as noted below:

  • Whining
  • Hyperactive behaviourchocolategroup
  • dehydration
  • Increased thirst and urination
  • Excessive panting
  • Digestive problems
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Weakness
  • Difficulty keeping balance
  • Muscle spasms, seizures
  • Rapid heart rate

When a dog shows signs of hyperactivity and agitation or is having seizures, it’s important that you get him or her to the vet quickly.  While there is no specific remedy for chocolate poisoning, the vet will induce vomiting. Usually, after that`s done, activated charcoal is given to help prevent the absorption of the remaining toxins. Fluids are typically given along with intravenous drugs to limit seizures and protect their hearts.

Most cats don’t have a sweet tooth and won`t usually eat chocolate on their own but may do so if coaxed.  While chocolate isn’t necessarily as lethal for cats as it is for dogs, it should be kept out of reach for them too as it can cause severe health problems.

Keep ALL candy and sugary foods away from pets.  Sugar isn’t good for them either as it can lead to obesity, dental problems and diabetes mellitus.  Further, if wrappers are swallowed, your pet risks tearing of the esophagus or intestines.dachshund

Treat your pet right this Halloween night!  You’ll find a variety of yummy pet treats that are safe for your pets at Global Pet Foods stores across Canada.  Access our store locator via the Global Pet Foods website noted here: http://www.globalpetfoods.com/store-locations

Have a safe and Happy Halloween!!

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Filed under Cats, Dental Care, Dogs, Education, Fall, Halloween, Healthy Pets, love, Pet Care, Pet Food, pet safety, Uncategorized

Happy Canada Day! Keep your pets safe during fireworks

Holiday fireworks can be terrifying for many pets. The noise can be too much for them and can hurt their sensitive ears.  Frightened pets can have different reactions to noise. Some tremble, others retreat to a hiding place, some try to run off and can get lost, while others display bizarre behaviour. Fireworks and even summer thunderstorms can trigger wild fear in about 20% of dogs and pets that are normally well-behaved may become aggressive, destructive and/or unpredictable.

Below are some tips that you can use to help your pets cope with fireworks or other loud noise:

  • Do not take your pets with you to watch the fireworks because if they become frightened, there’s nowhere for them to go that is familiar for them to feel safe.
  • Do not leave pets outside, even in a fenced yard, anytime when fireworks might be set off in the distance.
  • Ensure that your pets are wearing well-fitted collars and securely fastened ID tags.  This way, if they do run off, it will be easier for you to be reunited with your pet.
  • If there will be fireworks in your neighbourhood or if you’re having guests over for a holiday celebration, find a quiet, secure place to keep your pets. Darkening the room can help.  A Thunder Shirt may also help to calm your pets (these are available at all Global Pet Foods stores across Canada).
  • Crating is also a good idea to keep them calm.  Place the crate in the quietest part of the home. Make sure you put safe chew toys in the crate to occupy and distract the pet during the event.
  • You can close the curtains and turn up the radio, CD player or TV to drown out noise. This could soothe them enough to “tune out” the fireworks going off in the area.
  • Sometimes pets find shelter in the bathroom, near, under or in the bathtub. Do not try to lure them out. If the dog finds comfort there, let them be.
  • Rather than cuddle a frightened dog, try to distract the dog from the disturbing noises with physical activity such as playing ball.  Scolding or coddling a scared dog Fireworks2016Awill not help. Scolding will only scare and confuse him and coddling simply reinforces fearful behaviours. Instead, assume a “pack leader” role and act confident and not bothered by the noise and activity outside. You can give your pet a gentle massage, or just place your hand calmly on the pet’s head.
  • If you are hosting a fireworks party on your property, please ensure that your pet doesn’t have access to any debris from firework packaging. Dispose of all fireworks packaging accordingly when the firework has cooled down. Digesting any of the used debris from firework packaging can be harmful to pets.

There’s no question that special days like Victoria Day, Canada Day and Labour Day are all great reasons to celebrate and fireworks are a wonderful way to do so.  However, if you have pets, it’s important that you plan ahead.  Take precautions to ensure that your celebrations aren’t marred by a pet that has run off, or that you aren’t dealing with the after-effects of a pet having challenges in overcoming a bad experience of a really loud celebration.

Hope that you had a wonderful holiday weekend…cheers!

CanadaDay2016

 

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, Education, fireworks, Healthy Pets, love, Pet Care, pet safety, Summer, Uncategorized

Healthy Pet Challenge 2013

Body Condition Score

Pet Obesity: A National Epidemic

Pet obesity has become a national epidemic in North America and is one of the most common disorders affecting companion pets. Over 50% of dogs and cats are either overweight or obese. Approximately 24-40% of pets are classified as overweight while obesity is defined as an increase of over 20% above the optimum body weight.  Why is pet obesity on the rise? The key reasons are that more often, pets are leading a more confined and sedentary lifestyle with little or no significant exercise, availability of highly-palatable, energy-dense pet foods and treats, and a strong human-animal bond that leads to overfeeding and snacking.

Why should you be concerned as to whether your pet is overweight or obese? If your dog or cat is overweight or obese, they face an increased risk of serious illnesses such as:

  • Cancer
  • Respiratory Problems
  • Diabetes
  • Pancreatitis
  • Arthritis/Joint Pain
  • Hypertension
  • Liver Disease
  • Heart Disease

Further, allowing your dog to be overweight can decrease your pet’s lifespan. Obesity has been proven to reduce the lifespan of dogs by almost two years.

Obesity should be dealt with as a medical problem and taken care of immediately when recognized, as the condition is easier to control in its early stage. The first step in identifying whether your pet has a weight issue is to check their Body Condition Score. Above is a photo that will help you determine what your pet’s score is. The Body Condition Score is a system for determining your pet’s weight. Since dogs and cats can vary so much in size, even within a breed, utilizing the Body Condition Scoring system focuses more on shape than weight. Simply weighing your pet doesn’t necessarily let you know if your pet is underweight or overweight. This is why Global Pet Foods recommends using the Body Condition Score System in conjunction with weighing your pet. Once your pet reaches their ideal weight utilizing the Body Condition Score System, monthly monitoring of their weight helps to ensure that your pet’s ideal body condition is being maintained.

The Body Condition system ranges from underweight to ideal to overweight, and is based on a visual and hands-on examination of your pet. The first step in deciding whether your dog is overweight is to know what his ideal body weight looks like.  Compare your dog’s figure to the attached chart to find out whether your dog is overweight, underweight or at the ideal weight.

What’s Your Pet’s Score?

1. Very Thin:
Ribs, spine and bony protrusions are easily seen from a distance.
You won’t feel fat or muscle when you touch the ribs.
The pet looks bony, emaciated and starved.

2. Underweight:
Ribs, spine and bony protrusions are easily felt with little fat or muscle.
The pet has a small tucked stomach, as well as a waist (hourglass shape) when viewed from above.
The pet looks thin, skinny or lean.
It’s recommended that you increase the pet’s calories or balance their nutrition to help them reach an ideal weight.

3. Ideal Weight:
Ribs, spine and other bones are easily felt, but not easily seen.
You can feel some body fat and muscle over the ribs.
These pets have an obvious well-proportioned waist when viewed from above. The abdomen is raised and not sagging.
The pet looks healthy and somewhat muscular.

4. Overweight:
You have difficulty feeling or counting the ribs, spine and other bones underneath the fat. You’ll feel fat on the hips, chest, and base of tail.
These pets have a pear-shaped waist when viewed from above.
The abdomen sags when looking at the pet from the side.
The pet looks overweight, heavy or husky.

5. Obese:
You cannot feel the ribs, spines, or other bones due to the large amounts of fat tissue.  These pets have no waist but have a broad back when viewed from above.
The abdomen significantly sags when looking at the pet from the side.
The pet looks tired, finds it difficult to walk, run or do any other type of exercise due to their heavy weight.

NOTE: If your pet’s score is very thin or obese, it is recommended that you schedule an appointment with a certified veterinarian to address the health issues immediately.

 It is also recommended that you weigh your pet. Once you start a program to help your pet reach their ideal weight through exercise and managing their food intake, both the Body Condition Score and ongoing weight tracking can be used in conjunction to track the healthy changes in your pet.  Need more help? Visit your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store and speak to the Healthy Pet Care Specialists.

As Canada’s Healthy Choice for Pets, Global Pet Foods stores across Canada are committed to helping you and your pet follow a healthy lifestyle. If you know that your pet is not at his or her ideal weight, join our Healthy Pet Challenge!   Visit http://www.globalpetfoods.com/healthypetchallenge for details.  You could win 1 of 5 prizes of FREE Natural Balance pet food for a year or 1 of 50 Global Pet Foods gift cards valued at $150, or other cool prizes!

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, Education, Healthy Pet Challenge, Healthy Pets

Healthy Pets

Global Pet Foods: Celebrating Healthy Pets in 2013

As Canada’s Healthy Choice for Pets, Global Pet Foods is stepping up our efforts in 2013 to provide more education to help pet parents improve the health of their pets.

Global Pet Foods believes that there are four elements that are key to caring for pets – Mind+Body+Soul+Spirit. We celebrate pet parents who are incorporating these elements into the care of their furry children on a daily basis!

We were thrilled to see pet parents post on our Global Pet Foods Facebook page as to what steps that they are taking to keep their companion pets healthy in 2013.  The pet care specialists at your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store can provide pet parents with advice related to nutrition, pet care, and selecting the right treats, toys, accessories, etc. so that companion pets are happy and healthy.

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February 10, 2013 · 9:00 am

Brooke

Global Pet Foods Show Us Your Heart Campaign

What an awesome story about a little girl named Brooke how has a big heart!  She’s the Global Pet Foods ambassador!  What a sweetie-pie!

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February 10, 2013 · 4:52 am