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April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month

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The American Red Cross has dedicated April as National Pet First Aid Awareness Month.  This is a good time to think about how we can be better prepared in case our pets have an emergency. No one expects or hopes to deal with a pet emergency, but it’s important to be prepared so you can remain calm and focused in any type of situation.

The Paws & Pals Staff is Red Cross Pet First Aid and CPR Certified. We take the safety of your pet very seriously and are prepared for any situation.

P&P-First-Aid-large

If you should have a home emergency here are 6 tips to be at your best in a worst-case scenario.

 

1. Pack a pet first-aid kit. Pack two first-aid safety kits, and keep one at home and one in your car. You can buy pre-assembled kits or put one together yourself. first-aid-suppliesHere is a helpful link to the American Veterinary Association (AVMA.org) that offers basic first aid information: Pet first aid – Basic procedures

2. Have important phone numbers at your fingertips. Keep emergency phone numbers somewhere you can find them easily, so you can act quickly in an emergency. Along with your veterinarian’s contact information, you may also want to keep these nearby:

Animal Poison Control Center: (888) 426-4435
Pet Poison Help Line: (800)-213-6680

3. Get a decal for your window in the event an emergency occurs while you are not at home. This decal will allow rescue personnel to know you have pets inside that may need attention.

4. Take a Pet CPR & First Aid Class- The American Red Cross offers pet first-aid classes.Paws & Pals has a Red Cross certified instructor on staff and will be offering a community Pet CPR and First Aid Class later this year.  Check our newsletter or web site for details.

5. Know where to go in case of emergency. Your regular veterinarian is a great resource if an emergency occurs during the day, but most general-practice veterinary clinics are closed on evenings and weekends. Emergency clinics are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Be sure to know where they are located.

Prior Lake Pet Hospital Urgent Care
952-447-2855

Affiliated Emergency Veterinary Service
Eden Prairie
952-942-8272
7717 Flying Cloud Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

6. Finally, stay calm. Your pets will pick up on your excited state.

The American Red Cross offers a smart phone app with first aid tips and information for dogs and cats. Be prepared to act when your pet needs help!

The Red Cross Pet First Aid App

Remember that while first aid is not a substitute for veterinary care, however, taking quick action can save your pet’s life. Get your pet to your veterinarian after administering any first aid treatments at home.

Avoiding Springtime Hazards

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By the time the cold winter winds and snowstorms are replaced by pleasant sun-warmed spring days, pets are more than ready to return outdoors. Although spring is probably one of the most welcomed seasons, pet owners need to keep in mind that with the change in weather and increase of outdoor activity comes an increase of dangers for their beloved animal friends. Owners should be aware of these springtime hazards some of which might seem trivial, but can have fatal consequences. canstockphoto13183966

The first thing many people like to do when they are sure winter is gone for good is get their yards back in shape. It’s common knowledge that many fertilizer products can cause serious problems if ingested by animals or humans. It is still important to pay close attention to what the product labels say. Just because you see the term “natural” does not mean the product is nontoxic. There are also less-obvious problems lurking in gardens and lawns of which pet owners might not be aware.

Many people use mulch to complete their landscaping projects. However, there are certain types of mulch that pet owners should avoid. Cocoa bean mulch, for example, is known to poison dogs. Because this mulch is made from the hulls of cacao beans, it has a rich chocolate aroma that entices animals to eat it. Chocolate contains a substance called theobromine, which is a caffeine derivative toxic to animals and can even kill them if they ingest enough.

With the yard free of toxic fertilizer, there is still the increase of insects and other pests to think about. Tick-borne diseases, such as Lyme’s, may hospitalize your pet. And some fleaborne diseases, such as Bartonella, can also be detrimental to your pet’s health. There are many different products on the market to help control these little bugs. Pet owners should be sure to consult with their veterinarians before using these products.

Pesticide products are often a popular combatant to pest problems, but it is important that pet owners keep pets indoors for as long as the instructions suggest. If a dog or cat accidentally gets outdoors during pesticide treatment and eats the grass or even walks on it and then licks its paws, they could begin convulsing, vomiting, having diarrhea or internal bleeding and could even become unconscious.

The change in the weather, pollination of plants, and toxic particles that sneak from yard to yard, could all be the cause of allergic reactions in household pets. Scratching, sneezing, losing excess amounts of fur, red or dry skin, constant licking and nasal discharge all are signs that the animal is having an allergic reaction to something. Pet owners should visit their vet for the allergy medicine or shampoo that will work best for their particular problem.

Springtime is a time for sunny days, beautiful blooms and enjoying the outdoors. Just remember that along with the warmer weather come some potential hazards for your furry friend. Your knowledge and awareness of these dangers will help keep your beloved pet healthy and happy.

Dogs get SAD too (Seasonal Affective Disorder)

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Sad-Dog

People aren’t the only ones susceptible to wintertime blues (Seasonal Affective Disorder). “PDSA (The People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals) found that approximately 40 percent of dog owners saw a considerable downturn in their pet’s moods during the winter months,” reported Psychology Today.

Today, scientists know that SAD in humans is caused by low levels of light that lead to a chemical imbalance in part of the brain that controls body functions such as sleep, appetite, mood and activity. Now experts believe the same is happening in our dogs.

Symptoms to watch for that may indicate your furry friend is feeling low:
•    Aggressive behavior or soiling inappropriately
•    Clawing at furniture
•    Demanding more attention or appearing withdrawn
•    Frequent barking
•    Lethargy – sleeping more than usual
•    Less interest in going for walks or playing
•    Reduced appetite and weight loss

How can you help your dog to feel more cheerful?

To reverse the symptoms experienced by unhappy pets, continually talk to your dog, comfort them, and play games such as hiding favorite toys to keep them active. Of course, your dog’s mood change may also be simply due to cold weather and fewer opportunities to stretch their legs outside, but diet and exercise can play a big part in perking up your dog.

Exercise is probably the best answer!  Getting outside and exercising will help both you and your dog beat the wintertime blues.  Being outside exposes you to sunlight, which helps by itself.  Exercise also helps because you are activating you and your dog’s Endocannabinoid* systems which make you feel better. Another option for your dog is to attend doggie daycare.  They will benefit from the exercise, change of scenery and simply being around other dogs.  *Endocannabinoids are natural messengers in the body that help regulate many biological functions.*

Comment below- Does your dog get SAD?

Paws & Pals Voted Favorite Pet Boarding by Southwest Newspapers!

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Paws & Pals Favorite Pet Boarding

Paws & Pals Favorite Pet Boarding

Paws & Pals was chosen as “Favorite Pet Boarding” in Southwest Newspaper’s 2013-2014 “Faves & Raves” edition. We also made the top 3 for the “Favorite Pet Groomer”. A huge thanks to all who voted! We look forward to serving you and your four legged friends in the new year!

Southwest Newspapers include:  Chanhassen Villager  • Chaska Herald Eden Prairie • News Jordan Independent • Prior Lake American • Savage Pacer • Shakopee Valley News

Why We’re Thankful For Our Dogs This Thanksgiving

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Thankful-dog

Anyone who has ever had a dog knows how much love and joy they bring to our lives. From greeting us at the door when we get home to keeping us warm at night, we have plenty of reasons to be thankful for their very presence. Here are a few of those reasons:

1. They teach lessons. Pets give us a sense of responsibility. For those of us without children, pets instill a sense of duty by requiring us to be accountable for them. Mealtimes, grooming, exercise… pets require a lot of care, and it takes a responsible person to take care of them!

2. They are great listeners.  Do you ever need somebody to just rant to without getting all sorts of unsolicited advice? Try a cat or a dog. They won’t say a word. They’ll just look at you and let you speak of what happens to be on your mind. However, cats are more likely to be sleeping during any heart-to-heart you attempt to have with them, and I wouldn’t recommend trying to hold a conversation with a bird. They won’t let you get a word in.

3. Pets Love Us Unconditionally. Dogs do not discriminate against age, race, sex, weight or physical ability; they accept us for who we are. It does not matter if our makeup is not done, if we missed our sales goal at the office this week, or if we did not make the three-pointer on the basketball court. When we give our pets the affection they need and deserve at the end of the day, there is no limit to the amount of love and affection they will return.

4. They are calming. Pets live in the here and the now. They don’t have any worries about the past or the future. Their relaxing, untroubled energy is what we would refer to as chicken soup for the soul – it does us a world of good simply by being around it.

5. They are our friends. Sometimes there is just nothing better than curling up with a little ball of fur that looks up at us with adoring eyes. The bond between man and dog is powerful and very profound. The deepest friendships are often the ones that require a language of communication other than words, and pets allow us to experience such an incredible, timeless partnership.

If you don’t have a pet and are looking to get one, Paws & Pals strongly encourages you to consider adopting a dog from your local animal shelter!

In the meantime, for those of you that do have pets: go home and love them up. They are family members, confidants, our dearest friends, and they deserve every ounce of our gratitude!

Of course, there are many more reasons to be thankful for our furry friends. What are yours?

Howl-o-Ween Vote

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Howl-o-Ween Vote

It’s your turn to VOTE! Here are the top 5 finalists in our Howl-O-Ween Costume Contest. It was so hard to choose! Thanks to all the great contestants! Pick your top 3 (comment on Facebook, follow the link below). Please only vote once. Multiple votes (comments) will not count. We will except votes until Monday 11/4 until midnight. The 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place winner will be announced Tuesday 11/5.

Vote on Facebook

Prizes:

1st Prize: Getaway Package $100 value
2nd Prize: Play & Pamper Day $60 value
3rd Prize: Full Daycare Day $27 value

howl-o-ween 2013 dogs

 

 

 

Halloween Safety, Treats for Dogs

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Paws Resort Halloween 2013

Halloween Safety, Treats for Dogs

Thanks to VetDepot.com and AllRecipes.com, we have some great Halloween dog safety advice and a recipe to offer our customers. Read on and check out these helpful links for more information!

Pet Safety: Halloween is an important time to think about pet safety, including locating people treats in safe places (away from pet access) and considering the amount of visitor contact that is right for your pet. Click here for the full article from VetDepot.

Halloween Treats for Dogs: Enjoy some autumn comfort and treats – for you and your pet! Here are two recipes, for Puppy Pumpkin Bites and Peanut Butter and Pumpkin Dog Treats.

Do you have a favorite dog treat recipe? Share it here!

Howl-O-Ween 2013

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Join us for an Open House and Costume Party!

Howl-O-Ween 2013: Saturday October 26, 1:00 – 3:30pm
  • Pet Costume Contest
  • Free Nail Trims
  • Free Pet & People Portraits
  • Animal Communicator
  • Tricks, Treats & Doggie Games
  • Crafts for Kids & Door Prizes

 

Howl-o-Ween at Paws Resort 2013

Join us for Howl-O-Ween 2013! Paws & Pals Pet Resort, Prior Lake MN

Tip: When to intervene during off-leash play

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watch for the safety of dog behaviors at the dog parkDo you visit the dog park?
Consider when to intervene during off-leash play.

Play it safe: It is important to keep your dog safe when visiting the dog park. If any of these things are happening; one dog rolling another, tucked tail, pinning a dog for 5 seconds or longer, hiding or hovering. Interrupt the behavior and consider taking your dog home!

Learn more about dog behaviors, training and socialization in our Dog Training Classes here or contact us at 952-447-3644!

Tip: Dog Park Gate Safety

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Do you visit the dog parkDogs at the dog park gate?
Consider safety when entering and exiting.

Dog park gate safety: The gate is one of the most dangerous places in a dog park. Keep your dog with you (away from the gate) when other dogs are entering. And if you are bringing your dog in, stay outside the fence until all the dogs get bored and move away from the gate before you enter (this could take 3-5 minutes but it’s time well spent to keep your dog safe).

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