Tag Archives: summer

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

 

Comments Off on Happy Canada Day! Keep your pets safe during fireworks

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

The Dog Days of Summer and the Dangers of Heatstroke

Our pets need special attention during the summer months in order to keep them healthy, safe and content.  When the temperatures soar, it’s important that you monitor them for signs of heatstroke.  Below are two charts – one for dogs and one for cats – that can assist you with understanding the symptoms and signs that may require emergency care.

Print

Cats&Heatstroke-01

Visit your nieghbourhood Global Pet Foods store for more information and product recommendations that can help keep your pets happy & healthy during the warm summer months. Find a store near you: http://www.globalpetfoods.com/store-locations

Comments Off on The Dog Days of Summer and the Dangers of Heatstroke

Filed under Cats, Dogs, Education, Healthy Pets, Pet Care, Summer

Keep your Pets Safe and Cool This Summer

boy hugging dog with green

Welcome to summer – open windows, outdoor fun in the backyard or at the park, summer camp and vacation,
and simply soaking up the heat and sun and with our families – it’s a favourite time of the year for many of
us! Have fun and enjoy the summer season but remember to take some safety measures and precautions
to ensure that your companion pets remain healthy and happy.

Camping and Barbeques:

Summer is a wonderful time for barbeques and camping, but it can be dangerous for your pets if you don’t take the
necessary provisions to keep them on a very short leash.  Dogs may try to take a burning stick from the campfire and they’ll think that you’re playing if you chase after them. Running with a stick may result in your dog or other people in the vicinity being burned or injured. Dogs may also be tempted to lick the particles of food stuck to the barbecue after cooking, which could cause them to burn their mouths and tongues. Most importantly, remember to keep the lighter fluid out of reach from pets as it is a poison and if ingested, can lead to severe illness or death.

Harmful Chemicals:

Commonly used flea and tick products, mouse and rat baits, citronella candles, oil products, and lawn and garden products (ie. mulch and insecticides) can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so please lock them away. Wipe your pet’s paws and underbelly to remove any chemical residue before heading back in the house.  While many dogs love to swim, chlorine can irritate a dog’s skin and upset their stomach. Rinse your dog with fresh water after swimming in a pool and do not let them drink more than a small amount of pool water. Call your veterinarian immediately if you suspect that your pet has ingested a poisonous substance.

Mind the Paws:

Sidewalks, streets, patios, sand and other surfaces can burn your pet’s footpads. We recommend that you walk your dog in the morning and at night when the outdoor surfaces are coolest. If you must take your pets outside during the day, place your hand on the patio or sidewalk for 30 seconds before allowing them to walk on them. If it’s painful or too hot for you, it will be too hot and painful for your pets. A pet foot pad balm is ideal for irritated paws.

Protect Your Pet From the Sun:

Even though your pet’s fur helps to protect their skin from the sun, they can get sunburned, especially those with light skin and hair. Dogs and cats will suffer from sunburn in the same way we do, and they can also be at risk for skin cancer. Try to keep your pets out of the sun between 10 am and 4 pm, and if you have to head outside, rub a bit of sunblock on unprotected areas like the tips of the ears, the skin around the lips, and the tip of their nose.

Water, water, water, everywhere:

Dogs and cats don’t have as many sweat glands as we do, nor can they cool off like we can. Dogs pant and cats can too. The water lost by panting needs to be replaced, so keep fresh cool water available for your pet at all times.

Grooming:

Give your dog a good, thorough brushing and a bath regularly, particularly since they’re outside more, rolling around in the sand and grass, and playing in the water. This will help keep her clean, cool, and comfortable all throughout the summer.

Summer flies by so quickly, so we encourage you to enjoy every moment of it. Global Pet Foods carries the best products that will help your pets enjoy the season too, and keep them safe and healthy. We look forward to seeing you and your pets in our stores!

dog_in_hot_car2015-01

Comments Off on Keep your Pets Safe and Cool This Summer

Filed under Uncategorized

Summer Road Trips – they`re good for the Soul!

dog in car

Many of us have great childhood memories of family road trips, don’t we?  Fast forward to 2014. Smartphones and our hectic schedules often make it difficult for us to “unplug”, jump in the car and set out on a road trip.  But summer is a great time to do this and it`s a wonderful way to create some new memories for everyone involved.  

Whether you have kids and pets, or just pets (aka furkids!), there are many great places across Canada that are just waiting for you to explore.  Day trips or venturing out with the family on a 1 or 2 week vacation, no matter which city or province you live in, finding some great camping sites, a beautiful lake, a nice beach, scenic walking trails or a fun park is easy to do!  Use the internet to find some pet-friendly places and get ready to hit the road.

Before you go, there’s some pre-planning required when you’re including the pets in your travel plans, whether it’s a day or cross-country trip.  Here’s a checklist of some items to pack so that your pets will have a great time too!

Buckle up!:  We cringe when we see dogs running loose in the car and even worse, sitting on the driver`s lap!  An unrestrained dog can, at any moment, distract you, interfere with driving, and cause an accident.  Global Pet Foods carries many pet restraining equipment, including harnesses, seat belts, backseat barriers, and pet carriers. 

If you plan on using a kennel or crate, ensure that it is secured to the floor in the vehicle and that it`s large enough for your dog to comfortably sit and lie down in. Not only is this a safe method of transport, but with your pet contained, it will be much easier to keep the vehicle clean. Please visit your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods store well in advance of your travel, so that you select the right product, learn how to install and use them, and familiarize your pets with it before hitting the road.

Pet ID tags: Don`t have identification tags for your pets?  Visit Global Pet Foods to pick them up and attach them to your pet’s collar in advance of your travel just in case you and your pet become separated at any point during your excursion. 

Travel supplies and accessories: You’ll want to make sure that your pets have the comforts of home, and that you have the items you need if you go exploring once you reach your destination.  A comfy bed, interactive toys, collar and leash, portable and collapsible food and water containers, extra towels and pet wipes are some of the key items that you need to pack for the trip.  Remember to pack their pet medications (if needed) and a First Aid Kit for Pets.  You may need this if you`re camping or heading to the cottage, where the terrain is more rugged and there`s a risk that your pet could sustain bug bites or other injuries.

Pack their food:  We recommend that you bring your pet`s food with you, enough to last for the duration of the trip.  You may not find the brand that you`re looking for in other pet stores and having to switch foods during travel will most likely result in upset stomachs which can be stressful and difficult for you and your pet.  Make sure you visit your neighbourhood Global Pet Foods stores before you hit the road and stock up your pet’s food and favourite treats.

Frequent Stops:  If you are heading out on an extended road trip, ensure that your dogs have 30 minutes of exercise before putting them into your vehicle.  This will tire them out and keep them relaxed while travelling.  If your pets are usually quite active, we recommend that you stop every few hours to let everyone stretch their legs and use the facilities.  Pets, especially dogs that aren’t used to travelling, may need to stop for a quick “tree break” and a quick walk or run before getting back in the car.

TIP: Most places you’ll visit will require your dog to be leashed at all times, even when nature calls. Teach your dog how to relieve himself on command.  If your dog isn`t used to eliminating while on a leash, you will need to teach this skill well in advance of your travel.  Begin in your backyard.  Use a verbal cue like `go potty` to let him know that it`s time to perform.  Once your dog does it, praise him and continue to practice until he masters it.

Travel Anxiety: If your pet is normally anxious, travel may only exacerbate the situation.  Pack your dog’s favourite blanket or stuffed animal, toy, or any other any item that`s familiar to your dog that can provide some comfort and relax him.  We also recommend that you rub some lavender oil between your hands to provide some aromatherapy and give massage him gently before you both get in the car.

Some pets do suffer from travel (motion) sickness or extreme anxiety. Test whether this is the case with your pet by taking them for a car ride for an hour or two well in advance of your planned travel.  If your pet appears to be anxious or gets sick, take them on a few car rides (no more than an hour or so at a time) to help your dog become accustomed to travel motion.  In extreme cases, you may need to give them a natural supplement or use a ThunderShirt to help relax them, which can be found at Global Pet Foods stores across Canada. 

Water Safety: If you’re planning on heading to the cottage or the lake dog swimming in life jacketwhere you will be spending a lot of time in the water or on a boat, a properly fitted lifejacket is a ‘must-have’ for your pet.  We recommend that you visit your neighbourhood Global Pet foods store before your departure to have them properly fitted and get your pet used to wearing it.

Travelling as family can be a great way to bond and create a lifetime of memories. You can include your pets as long as you plan in advance.  Enjoy your road trip!

Comments Off on Summer Road Trips – they`re good for the Soul!

Filed under Cats, Dogs, Education, Pet Care, Summer

Protect your pets during the summer season

After the long, cold winter, and cool, damp spring, many of us are rejoicing that summer is finally here!  Beautiful gardens, outdoor sports, enjoying an ice cream treat after dinner, summer vacations up to the cottage or hanging out in the backyard or a park – it’s a season that appeals to us for many different reasons.  But summer can be very challenging for our pets and negatively affect their health.

Below are some key tips to help keep your pets cool and safe this summer.

Take it easy on pets that can’t deal with the heat:  Elderly, very young, and ill animals have a hard time regulating their body temperature, so make sure they stay cool and out of the sun on steamy summer days. Dogs with snub noses, such as Pekingese, pugs, and bulldogs, have a hard time staying cool because they can’t pant efficiently, so they also need to stay out of the heat. Overweight dogs are also more prone to overheating, because their extra layers of fat act as insulation, which traps heat in their bodies and restricts their breathing capabilities.  Be mindful of your pet’s needs during extreme temperatures and take the necessary precautions to keep them cool and comfortable during the summer heat and sun.

Water, water, water everywhere:  Indoors or outside, your pets need access to lots of cool, fresh water all throughout the day during the summer months. Check your pet’s water bowl several times each day to make sure that it’s always full. Use an automatic Waterer when you’re not home. Fill up the portable water bottles with cold water (and pack them in an ice cooler) and take them with you when you head outside. Whether you’re at the park, the beach, the cottage or hanging out in the backyard, we can’t stress enough just how important it is to ensure that your pets always have access to clean, fresh, cool water during the summer!

Bring them inside: Your pets shouldn’t be left outside unsupervised on long, hot days, even in the shade. Dogs and cats can become ill quickly if they overheat, so keep them inside as much as possible on really hot and sunny days. If your pet wants to head outside, please keep a close eye on her or him, and do not leave them outside for more than an hour, especially if they have access to little or no shade.

Mind the humidity: Humidity interferes with our pets` ability to help get rid of the excess body heat and they do not sweat like we do.  While cats seem to withstand the heat and humidity more than dogs can, if it becomes too hot for them, either in the house or outside, both may be in danger.  During extremely hot and humid days, keep them inside, and try to keep your home as cool as possible.  In extreme heat and humidity, or during a lengthy power outage, you may want to seek a cooling centre in your neighbourhood where you can spend some time in an environment where you and your pets can cool down.

Avoid products with chemicals:  Commonly used flea and tick products, mouse and rat baits, and lawn and garden products, such as mulch and insecticides, can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. When walking your dog, steer clear of areas that you suspect have been sprayed with insecticides or other chemicals. Keep citronella candles, oil products and insect coils out of pets’ reach as well. Call your veterinarian immediately if you suspect that your pet has ingested a poisonous substance.  Wipe your pets’ paws and underbelly before you bring them back inside.

Grooming:  Keeping your pet well-groomed will help their hair do what it was designed to do: protect them from the sun and insulate them from the heat. If your pet has extremely thick hair or a lot of mats and tangles, the fur may trap too much heat, so you may want to take them to a Groomer.  It’s not recommended that you shave dogs entirely as the fur helps to prevent the sun from burning their skin.

Pets need protection from the sun:  Even though your pet’s fur helps to protect their skin from the sun, your pet can get sunburned, particularly if she has light skin and hair. Dogs and cats can suffer in the same way from sunburns as humans do, and they can also be at risk for skin cancer. Keep your pet out of the sun between 10 am and 4 pm, and when you do go outside with your pet, rub a bit of sunblock unprotected areas like the tips of the ears, the skin around the lips, and the tip of the nose. Avoid direct sunlight when you can.

Keep your pet leashed:  When you’re outside enjoying the warm weather, keep your dog leashed. It will keep your dog from getting lost, fighting other animals, and eating and drinking things that could make them sick. This tip isn’t just for dogs – even cats can learn to walk on a leash if you train them. 

Make sure your pets don’t over-exert themselves:  While exercise is an important part of keeping your dog or cat at a healthy weight, it also helps the body stay cool.   Too much exercise can cause your pets to overheat. Exercise early in the morning or after the sun goes down when it’s cooler for you both.  Keep the walks to a gentle pace and make sure that your dog has plenty of water to drink. If your dog is panting a lot or seems exhausted, it’s time to stop exercising and let them cool down.

Too hot to touch:  Under the summer sun, asphalt on sidewalks and streets can heat to a temperature that can burn a dog’s paws. To avoid scorched paws, walk your dog very early in the morning or in the late evening when the streets have cooled off. If you must walk your dog during the day, dog booties can protect their feet. Always put your hand down on the asphalt for about thirty seconds – if you must pull your hand away because the street is too hot, it is too hot for your dog to walk on without hurting his paws. If you don’t want your hand on the street for more than thirty seconds, your dog probably does not want his paws on it for ten or more minutes of walking.

Party animals:  Are you planning on attending a backyard barbecue or party and plan on taking your pet(s)?  Please keep in mind that there are some foods that are dangerous for pets, which may result in digestive issues, severe illness and even death.  Macadamia nuts, raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate, products with the sweetener xylitol, and alcohol are just some of the items that can cause havoc with your pet’s digestive system and may be life-threatening for them.  If you have to take them, take a crate for them to stay in, or ensure that they’re on a leash and within your eyesight at all times.

Exposure to Fireworks:  Please leave pets at home when you head out to dog_in_hot_car2014-01summer celebrations, and never use fireworks around pets. Exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma to curious pets, and even unused fireworks can be hazardous. Many types of fireworks contain potentially toxic substances such as potassium nitrate, copper, chlorates, arsenic and other heavy metals. Further, many pets cannot manage the noise of fireworks and the stress that they can cause your pet can last for quite some time.

Never leave your pet in the car (ever!):  Now that the  warm  weather is here, never, ever leave your pet in the car – ever. The air in a parked car doesn’t circulate and the temperature can rise within minutes to a point where it can become life threatening. Even if the windows are cracked open and you park in the shade, cars heat up like ovens and can be unbearable and result in death. Please leave your pets at home if you can’t take them to places where they can accompany you.

Revel in the summer because it doesn’t last forever.  Just be mindful that the weather (heat and sun) can have severe health implications for your pets.  Global Pet Foods carries the best products that you’ll need to keep your pets happy and healthy during the season. We look forward to seeing you and your pets in one of our stores across Canada!  To find a Global Pet Foods store near you, view our Store Locator via our website at http://www.globalpetfoods.com/store-locations.

Cheers to a great summer!

Comments Off on Protect your pets during the summer season

Filed under Education, Healthy Pets, Pet Care

Summer Fun and Safety

 Stay Cool. Stay Safe.

jumping in lake dog and girl

Welcome to summer – no school, open windows, more time outside, summer vacation, and simply soaking up the sun with our family. Keeping active throughout the summer is important for both people and pets, but there are safety measures that we all need to take to ensure that our companion pets can enjoy the nice weather while staying healthy and happy during the season.

 

Water, water, water, everywhere:

Dogs and cats don’t have as many sweat glands as we do, nor can they cool off like we can. Dogs pant and cats can too. The water lost by panting needs to be replaced, so keep fresh cool water available for your pet at all times.

Water Safety:

Most dogs enjoy swimming, but some cannot swim while others may hate the water. Be conscious of your dog’s preferences and skills before trying to make him swim. If you’re swimming for the first time with your dog, start in shallow water and coax him in by calling his name. When boating, put a life jacket on your pets as a safety measure in case they fall overboard.

Mind the sun and heat:

Avoid strenuous exercise on extremely hot days. Take walks in the early morning or evening when the sun’s heat is less intense. When you go for a walk or are heading to the park or the beach, find shady areas to rest. The sunshine can overheat dogs, burn their skin, or just make them extremely uncomfortable. Just as we need to sit under an umbrella or awning to cool down, our pets do too. Take bottles of cold water for your dog and encourage her to drink often. Remember that your dog may become overheated long before you do.

Signs of heatstroke may include hot skin, rapid panting, twitching muscles, salivation, and a dazed expression. Note that short-nosed dogs such as bulldogs and pugs do not pant as efficiently as long-nosed dogs, and therefore have to work harder to cool themselves. If your dog appears to be overly hot, wrap your pet in a towel with cool, NOT cold water. Cool him down by giving him ice cubes to lick (as cold water will upset his stomach worse and hasten dehydration). Let him lie in front of a fan. Go immediately to a local emergency vet if your pet’s condition worsens.

Grooming:

Give your dog a good, thorough brushing and a bath regularly, particularly since they’re outside more, rolling around in the sand and grass, and playing in the water. This will help keep her clean, cool, and comfortable all throughout the summer.

Never leave your pet in the car:

On sunny, warm days never leave your dog in the car – ever.  The air in a parked car doesn’t circulate and the temperature can rise within minutes to a point where it can become life threatening. Even if the windows are cracked open and you park in the shade, cars heat up like ovens and can be unbearable. Please leave your pets at home if you can’t take them to places where they can accompany you.

Your Global Pet Foods’ Healthy Pet Care Specialists can help ensure that both you and your pets are ready for the season. To find a store near you, visit http://www.globalpetfoods.com/store-locations

May you and your pets have a safe and healthy summer! Cheers!

Comments Off on Summer Fun and Safety

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