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Pet Holiday Safety Tips: Holiday Hazards to Avoid

Monday, November 26, 2018 2:03:38 PM EST5EDT

Do you know how to keep your pets safe during the holiday season? From plants to decorations, be sure to steer your pets clear of the following holiday hazards.
0 Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Webimax Access

Things to Consider Before You Take Your Dog on a Hike

Wednesday, March 21, 2018 4:44:33 PM EST5EDT

 

Your dog most likely loves the outdoors as much as you do. Now that the days are longer and the early days of spring are here, you may be considering going hiking with your four-legged friend. Before you do, though, we would encourage you to keep a few things in mind to make sure you and your pup enjoy your time together safely.

Are You and Your Pup in Good Enough of Shape?

While you don’t have to be marathon-ready, you should both be in good enough shape to walk several hours on uneven terrain. If you live in a northern climate where the weather gets cold in winter, you may have spent the last few months mostly indoors. Your pup may be a little out of shape as well. Sprains are some of the common injuries dogs incur, and they often occur after a dog has been sedentary for an extended period of time and has experienced muscle loss. Go on a few shorter trial runs before you decide to go on a longer hike to make sure you’re both up for the activity.

Pack for Injuries for Your Dog Too

Just like you, your dog can experience abrasions and scratches as well. In addition to putting your dog’s ID collar on and packing food and water for the both of you, you should pack wound care supplies for dogs as well just in case if your dog gets injured on the hike. If you know the area can be treacherous, you may even want to consider putting booties on your dog as well. In the event that your dog does get injured, you should clean and cover the wound with your dog wound supplies as best you can and get to the vet as soon as possible.

Is Your Dog Trained Well Enough to Go Outdoors

If you take your dog on a hike, he or she needs to know the “Come” command among others. The last thing you would want is for your dog to chase after a rabbit or squirrel and get lost in the wilderness. If you haven’t already, take your dog to a professional trainer who can work with you on these basic commands and then practice at home. If you find that your dog is a quick learner and has passed all the command tests in various situations, he or she might be ready for some fresh air in the great outdoors.

0 Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Webimax Access

Preparing a Pet for Evacuation

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 3:12:58 PM EST5EDT

No surprise here, but September is National Disaster Preparedness Month. This seems pretty fitting for the month that sits right in the heart of hurricane season, especially this year with Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma causing devastation in the Gulf Coast and Florida over the last few weeks.

But with the many stories surrounding the despair of some and heroics of others in Houston, Miami, Tampa Bay, etc., what has seemingly fallen through the cracks is the effort that was made by many to save their beloved family pets during mandatory evacuations.

Proper preparation for pets requires more than just the basics like buying pet supplies such as flea and tick prevention for dogs or cat medicine for your feline friend.

A truly prepared pet owner develops a contingency plan that will ensure their pet’s safety during a natural disaster and/or a subsequent evacuation.

To help those who haven’t already prepared their pets for evacuation, here are some tips from Vet Supply Source to get you started.

Get Informed

It’s first important to know what natural disasters could affect your area. This will give you a better idea of what pet supplies you might need, how much you’ll need, and how to formulate your plan. Have a radio handy so that you can tune into your NOAA Weather local emergency station. Also monitor TV and other forms of media if there are indications that a natural disaster is approaching. It is also a good idea to sign up for mobile alerts and mobile warnings about severe weather in your area. You can download the FEMA app to receive weather alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five different locations in the United States.

Have a Plan

Leaving a pet behind during an evacuation would be not only emotionally taxing, but it also could result in the animal being lost, injured or worse. Make a plan that helps your pet be as prepared to evacuate as you are. A good first step to your plan could be checking in with a neighbor or friend who lives nearby to see if they’d be willing to check on your pets or take care of your animals in the event that you are unable to get to them yourself.

Next, look up pet-friendly shelters in your area that will accommodate you and your pet(s). This is easier said than done because many emergency shelters cannot accept pets because of public health reasons. If you cannot find a pet-friendly shelter near you, look into pet hotels, animal hospitals or boarding facilities that could possibly watch your pet until you’re able to reconnect with them. Keep in mind that most boarding kennels, veterinarians and animal shelters will require your pet’s medical records to make sure all of their vaccinations are up to date. Worse comes to worst, consider an out-of-town friend or relative to send your pet to for the time being.

Another, more advanced measure that pet owners can take is having their pet microchipped. Doing so can make looking up your address and phone number easy if your pet is lost.

Build a Kit

Putting together a kit for your pet will also go a long way in helping them survive, as well as keep them happy and comfortable during a stressful time. Your kit should include: food (at least a three-day supply in an airtight, waterproof container); water (at least three days’ worth and specifically for your pets); medicine and medical records; microchipping documents; first-aid kit; collar and leash; pet carrier; sanitation supplies; and some familiar items such as toys, treats and bedding.

0 Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Webimax Access

Are You Ready for National Pet Fire Safety Day?

Thursday, June 11, 2015 3:00:00 AM EST5EDT

July 15th may seem like any other ordinary day of the year but did you know it's recognized as National Pet Fire Safety Day? The American Kennel Club and ADT Security Services launched the nationwide pet safety awareness program in 2009 and has since educated pet owners about potential safety risks that could happen when pets are home alone.

Pet Fire SafetyAccording to the National Fire Protection Association, fire departments in the United States respond to an average of 366,600 home fires per year and research points out that cooking equipment is the leading cause. But did you know that these fires aren't all caused by humans? Data from NFPA shows that nearly 1,000 fire incidents are started by the homeowner's pets and approximately 500,000 pets are affected annually by home fires in general. With these statistics in mind, pet parents need to take some precautionary actions to ensure their pets are safe.

Preventative Measures

National Pet Safety Day is aimed to raise awareness of responsible pet ownership and how pet parents can plan for unexpected emergencies by enacting preventative measures that include ways to promote safety in the event of a house fire. When The American Kennel Club conducted a study with pet owners, 88% of them considered their pets to be beloved and valued family members, making National Pet Fire Safety Day even more important. Check out some tips that can improve your pets' safety when you aren't home!

  • Pet Proof: Inspect you home for areas where pets may inadvertently might start fires – conceal loose wires, secure stove knobs, do not leave any items on kitchen counters near stove burners, keep flammable items away from fireplaces and any other hazards that could initiate a fire.

  • Double Check: Every time you are preparing to leave you home, double check every single room and be sure to extinguish anything with a flame – candles, fireplaces, kitchen appliances, etc.

  • Monitoring System: It's obvious that you should have smoke alarms affixed in multiple areas of your home, but if you should take it another step further by having a monitoring system connected to the smoke alarms. This way, any kind of potential fire could be immediately addressed before it gets out of control.

  • Supplies: You should be sure your pets have collars with tags and if you have a dog, have leashes near exits. These dog supplies will help firefighters identify and handle any animals you have in your home in the event of a fire. Additionally, have a window cling on one of the front windows of your home that states how many pets you have inside. Firefighters are familiar with these signs and it'll give them a better idea of how to rescue them.

  • Practice: A house fire can occur at any time, whether you are home or not, and you should practice an evacuation route with your pets if the need to escape ever arises.

Mark your calendars on July 15th as National Pet Fire Safety Day to serve as a reminder but be sure to keep these preventative measures in mind all year long! 

Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Vet Supply Source

6 Springtime Safety Tips for Dogs

Thursday, April 23, 2015 3:00:00 AM EST5EDT

6 Springtime Safety Tips for DogsSpring is here, which means that you can start to enjoy the outdoors with your favorite pooch again! While you may be excited at the prospect of all that quality time exercising and exploring, you'll need to give some thought to the safety of your pet. The great outdoors have their hazards, after all, and you don't want your fun time together to be ruined because you didn't take some basic precautions. Here are six things that you can do to ensure that your dog is safe when you head outside this spring!

1. Check their Paws after Walks

With the weather finally warming up, many of the roads and sidewalks will now be covered in leftover salt and snow-melting chemicals. As time goes on, these will be washed away by the rain, but for the moment they're still in evidence in some parts of the country – and being applied directly to your dog's feet every time you take them out. In order to keep your dog from licking these hazardous substances, inspect and wash their paws after every walk.

2. Don't use Sticks for Fetch

Heading outdoors to play fetch or a friendly game of tug-of-war with your dog can be fun, but don't use those sticks or branches left behind from winter. Sticks can damage your dog's mouth, as well as pose a choking hazard. Instead, use a rubber chew toy, Frisbee or tennis ball for springtime fun.

3. Start Tick Prevention Early

Unfortunately, warmer weather means bugs. Ticks can transmit diseases to your pet, and fleas are incredibly hard to get out of your house once they've started breeding and laying eggs. The good news about this as it relates to your dog is that you can avoid the problem entirely by taking some early preventative action. Pick up flea and tick prevention for dogs now, before they've hurt your pet or hitched a ride into your home.

4. Dogs Can Have Allergies Too

Dogs are just as susceptible to seasonal allergies as their owners are, so keep an eye out for any reactions. Things like pollen, flowering trees, dust, tulips, and even mold can spur an allergic reaction in a dog. Some of their symptoms could include sneezing, itching, coughing, oily-feeling fur, and flaky skin. If these symptoms persist, take your furry friend to visit the vet so that they can be properly diagnosed and allergy medicines can be recommended for them.

5. Watch Out for New Plants and Pesticides

As mentioned above, blooming flowers and plants are one of the defining characteristics of spring, but they can look like tempting treats to dogs. Many dogs are already fond of grass, but some other plants are harmful and even poisonous to them and can cause a variety of problems if digested, such as diarrhea, vomiting, and even death. Make it a habit to keep a close eye on your dog when outside and don't let them chew on anything that you aren't sure about. In addition, be careful about letting your dog eat the grass. While the grass itself isn't usually harmful to your dog, the pesticides that many people put on their lawns in spring are!

6. Pet-Friendly Spring Cleaning

Spring cleaning is almost a national event at this point, as people all over clean the clutter and dust that has accumulated in their homes over the winter. However, when you own a pet, you have to be a little more careful than most about the process. One of the best ways to do this is to use pet-friendly, non-toxic cleaners that won't harm your dog if they get into them or come in contact with areas that you just cleaned. Also, it's always smart to keep cleaning products stored in a safe location that is out of your dog's reach, for extra safety.

At Vet Supply Source, we want to help you keep your dog safe and healthy year round. Check out our preventative products and keep reading our blog for more tips on pet care!

Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Webimax Access

Three Tips For Having a Pet Safe Holiday Season

Friday, December 6, 2013 8:47:00 AM EST5EDT

The holidays are here again, and pet owners are going to be busy preparing their home for guests. The holidays can bring a lot of fun and cheer to the house, but they can also bring problems for pets and their owners. Large gatherings at your home could upset and stress out your pets and the decorations and food you serve could end up causing problems if your pets get their paws on them. Have a happy and healthy holiday season by following these tips to keep your pets in the holiday spirit.
 
Watch your tree
Christmas trees can be beautiful, but they can also cause some severe health problems for your pets. Pine needles and artificial needles can puncture your pet’s intestines if they eat them, and the tinsel you use to decorate your Christmas tree can end up causing a blockage in their digestive track. Set up a pet perimeter around the tree to ensure that they don’t get too close to the tree, and make sure you do some extra vacuuming around your house to pick up pine needles. Place your Christmas tree lights on higher branches in case your pets find a way past the perimeter, and also the same with your tinsel (or forego using it all together).
 
Skip the holiday flowers
Holly, mistletoe, and poinsettia plants may look festive, but they’re poisonous to dogs and cats. Many of the flowers and plants we use to celebrate the holidays are harmful to our pets. If you want to decorate with traditional Christmas plants, forgo getting real ones and use artificial plants. They’ll last far longer than any real plants could, and they won’t pose a danger to your pets. If you love using real flowers, make sure that they’re kept in an area that your pets can’t reach.
 
Comfort your pets

 

The holiday gatherings can be fun for you and your friends, but your pets may feel a little overwhelmed with all of the attention and strange faces. If your pet tends to be a little skittish around people, explain to your guests that your pet may not want to be petted or played with. If you’re going to have children over, make sure that they know how to respect your pet’s boundaries so that they don’t end up scratched or spooked. Some animals like being around the hustle and bustle of holiday parties, but pets may be more comfortable in a quiet room with a few of their toys so that they have something soothing to play with. Also make sure that you try not to mess up their routine during the holidays. Give your kitty their diabetic supplies for cats, and take your dog for a walk at their usual time.
Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Vet Supply Source

You Gave Them What?! Five Things You Should Never Feed Your Dog

Thursday, September 12, 2013 7:55:05 AM EST5EDT

Loving dog owners do whatever they can to make sure that dogs are happy and healthy.  They’ll make sure that they get plenty of exercise, give them vitamins and joint supplements for dogs, and will make sure that they eat nutritious food.  It isn’t uncommon for some dog owners to reward their pets with some table scraps and leftovers after meals.  You may think that what you’re giving your dog is a treat, but you may be unknowingly giving your dog something that can make them sick.  It’s common knowledge that you should never give your dog chocolate or animal bones, but there are also other foods they can eat that can cause severe medical problems.  If you want to reward your dog with a treat, avoid giving them any of these foods.
 
Caffeine
 
Caffeine is harmless to humans, but large quantities of the substance can be fatal for dogs.  Keeping your dog away from coffee and tea is a good start, but you shouldn’t forget that other foods and drinks could contain enough caffeine to harm your dog. 
 
Avocados
 
Avocado may be delicious to you, but it it’s deadly for your dog.  Avocados contain a substance called persin.  Persin is completely harmless to humans), but large amounts can be toxic to dogs.  If you’re growing avocados at home, make sure you create a barrier around them that your dog can’t reach.  Persin isn’t just in the avocado fruit; it’s located in the leaves, seeds, and bark of the plant as well.
 
Grapes and Raisins
 
Some people give grapes and raisins to their dogs because they think they’re a healthy treat, but both of these fruits can be very harmful to your dog.  People aren’t exactly sure why, but grapes and raisins have the ability to cause kidney failure in dogs.  Your dog doesn’t have to eat an entire box of raisins or a bushel of grapes to experience it, a small amount of either fruit can make your dog ill.
 
Dairy
 
Seeing a dog lick an ice cream cone may be cute, but dairy products can have some very unappealing side effects for your pet.  Ice cream, cheese, and any milk based product can give your dog diarrhea and cause other digestive problems.  They also have the potential to cause an allergic reaction, which may manifest as intense itchiness.
 
Products with Xylitol
 
Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that’s commonly found in candy, gum, toothpaste, baked goods, and diet foods.  Xylitol has the ability to cause an increase of insulin in their body, which can lead to a severe blood sugar drop that can cause liver failure.
Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Vet Supply Source
Summer weather in the United States doesn't just bring warm temperatures and long days; it also brings a high threat for severe weather.  Millions of people have already experienced tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, wildfires, and other natural disasters and weather events.  Many families and households have plans in place in case there is a severe weather event threatening their home.  They have all of their important documents in one place so that they can easily grab them, are always stocked with water, and have a first aid kit ready for use.  When many people make plans for an emergency they consider their property and their immediate family members, but there's one member of the family that always seems to get left out: their pets.
 
If you're a pet owner it's essential for you to have a plan in place to make sure that you have everything your pet could need in case of an emergency.  The Red Cross has a great page that has in-depth information about preparing your pet for an emergency.  When you're planning your emergency kit, be sure to have these essential supplies ready.
 
Water
 
During an emergency having access to fresh water is important.  When you go to stock up on emergency supplies for your family, make sure that you pack enough water for your pet.  The more you can store for your family the better, but when you're planning your supplies make sure that you have at least a week's worth of water for every member of your family.
 
First Aid Kit
 
You may have a first aid kit for your family, but your pet needs its own kit as much as the rest of your family does.  Don't use your human first aid kit for your pet, there are some medications and substances humans use to treat medical problems that can be harmful to your pet.  The Humane Society has a comprehensive list of essential and helpful veterinary supplies to have in your animal's first aid kit.  Be sure to include important medical paper work (vaccination status, proof of rabies treatments), contact information for your vet, and a current photo of your pet in case they get separated from you.  In fact while we're on this topic, let's move on to…
 
Proof of Ownership
 
If your family needs to evacuate to a shelter your pets may have to be taken to a different shelter or may need to be boarded. It isn't uncommon for papers to get lost during an emergency, and you want to make sure that you have proof that your pet is yours in case the boarder or shelter loses your initial sign-in papers.  Carry their adoption papers and a few recent pictures in an air-tight and waterproof container so that you can easily prove that you are your pet's owner.
 
Creature Comforts
If you need to evacuate your home your pet probably feels as nervous and scared about the situation as you do!  To make the whole situation a bit easier for your pet, make sure you pack a few of their favorite things when you head out.  A familiar pet bed, a beloved toy, and a soft blanket can make being enclosed in their carrier a little more bearable for them.
Comments | Posted in Pet Safety By Vet Supply Source

Emergency Pet Care for Dogs: Ingesting Poisonous/Dangerous Materials

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 6:03:54 AM EST5EDT

The first aid practices you learn today could save your pet tomorrowThe relationship between pets and their owners is loving and strong, that's why most pet owners spend time making sure that all of their pets needs are met.  The bond between people and dogs has existed for thousands of years, and many dog owners view their pets as another member of the family. Regular checkups with the vet and proper grooming are important for dogs, but sometimes health problems and accidents happen.  During an emergency you may not have access to important veterinary supplies, so you need to make sure that you're prepared to properly care for your dog before the proper medical authorities can help.
 
Pet Care Dos:
 
Most people know that chocolate can be deadly for dogs, but others aren't aware of the dangers onions, garlic, and other common foods pose.  When you notice that your dog has eaten something that's dangerous the first thing you should do is remove them from the area and remove any more dangerous objects and foods.  Check to see if your pet is still breathing and acting normally.  If they aren't they should be rushed to an animal hospital, and if it's possible bring a sample of the poisonous material.  If your dog appears fine you can call the Pet Poison Helpline at (800)-213-6608 for help.  Even though people on the hot line may be able to solve your poisoning problem over the phone, you should always take your dog to the vet afterwards.  They'll be able to check your pet for any other health problems related to the poisoning.
 
Pet Care Don'ts
 
-Never induce vomiting or give your dog any other foods or "home remedies" unless your vet or somebody at the Pet Poison Helpline tells you to do so.  Some things you may be tempted to give your dog could end up doing more harm than good.
 
-Don't give your dog more food in hopes of "canceling out" the poisoning. 
 
-Don't leave potentially dangerous foods within reach of your dog.  If you have a dog that likes to explore cabinets you could secure them with childproof locks in order to keep them out and safe.
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