Ask most dog owners and they’ll tell you that they count the bonds they share with their pets among their most treasured relationships. As it turns out, most dog owners are working to keep the love alive with a familiar approach: the notion that the fastest path to the heart is through the stomach.
Good Friends, Good Food
Dog owners dish on how food factors into pet bonding
(Family Features) Ask most dog owners and they’ll tell you that they count the bonds they share with their pets among their most treasured relationships. However, that boundless affection and loyalty isn’t a one-sided effort; dog owners are demonstrating their puppy love in numerous ways, especially when it comes to chow time.
There’s much to be said for the unique relationship people share with their dogs, according to the 2018 Pets and People Survey by Just Right by Purina. Nearly unanimously (95 percent), respondents said they view their dogs as part of their families, and more than half reported that their pet pals help them de-stress after a long workday and have comforted them after receiving bad news.
Just like any relationship, the bond with a dog requires nurturing. As it turns out, most dog owners are working to keep the love alive with a familiar approach: the notion that the fastest path to the heart is through the stomach. After all, when you view pets as family, you may as well feed them like it.
Encouraging dinner dialogue
Mealtime is an ideal opportunity to enjoy some extra interaction, from asking if your dog is hungry to talking your way through filling his or her bowl with a personalized dog food blend. In fact, 64 percent of dog owners surveyed reported asking their dog if it likes its food after serving it. There may not be a verbal response, but dogs give off plenty of signals to let you know whether or not they’re enjoying the meal.
Personalizing the experience
Making dog nutrition matter
Serving up security
If you extend some human courtesies as part of your feeding ritual, you certainly aren’t alone. For example, 73 percent of dog owners in the Just Right by Purina survey feed their dogs before they serve themselves. Not only is it a smart strategy to prevent begging at the table, it keeps your pooch from wondering when his own hunger cravings will be sated.
Celebrating special occasions
Learn more about feeding the bond with your pet at justrightpetfood.com.
Dog Food Ingredients for Unique Nutritional Needs
Your dog is unique, not only in his relationship with you, but his preferences, tastes, quirks and habits. It’s no wonder that his nutritional needs are unique to match. When you’re evaluating food options, give careful attention to the ingredients to find the right blend of nutrients for your dog:
Vitamins are responsible for a vast range of functions, including aiding in DNA synthesis, energy release from nutrients, bone development, eye function, maintenance of cell structure, blood clotting, nerve signal transmission and everything in-between.
Minerals contribute to your dog’s healthy bones and teeth, blood clotting, muscle function, nerve transmission, nutrient metabolism, cell function and more.
Fat is a source of energy that helps with absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and fatty acids, as well as promoting healthy skin and coat, immune system, joints, brain and vision.
Protein is essential for building organs and tissues like tendons, muscles, skin, hair and blood; it also functions as enzymes, hormones and antibodies.
Carbohydrates are efficient sources of glucose for energy, a source of heat and can be stored as glycogen. Fiber is a type of carbohydrate that aids in colon health, as well as managing weight and obesity.
All statistics and findings included in this release were pulled from a survey conducted online by Research Now SSI on behalf of Just Right by Purina among adults ages 18+ who are dog owners and have some responsibility over the well-being of their pet. A total of 1,010 responses were collected between March 26 and March 29, 2018. These online surveys are not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.SOURCE:
Just Right by Purina
Service dogs work hard each and every day to protect their human counterparts. Not only are they constant companions, but they are hardworking animals that can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, which can help lessen the symptoms of posttraumatic stress and traumatic brain injury, for example.
At Your Service
Fast facts about service dogs
(Family Features) Service dogs work hard each and every day to protect their human counterparts. Not only are they constant companions, but they are hardworking animals that can help reduce stress and anxiety levels, which can help lessen the symptoms of posttraumatic stress and traumatic brain injury, for example.
In honor of National Service Dog Month, consider these facts about the four-legged service animals:
Common Misconceptions About Service Dogs
However, a survey by American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, suggests that employees are not educated about the unique needs of customers with service dogs. Nearly seven in 10 (69 percent) retail employees said they never received training from their employer on the questions they are legally allowed to ask customers to verify an animal is a service dog.
Further adding to confusion is a lack of understanding of the difference between service dogs and other assistance animals. Emotional support dogs and therapy dogs assist people in their daily lives, but they do not have the same responsibilities as service animals. For instance, therapy dogs provide affection and comfort to their owners, but they do not have special rights of access in all buildings or public areas. Since service animals often provide mobility assistance or communicate medical alerts, they should always be allowed to accompany their owners.
A Helping Paw
“Dogs have incredible abilities, including saving lives and making the world a better place,” said Angel May, corporate citizenship lead at Mars Petcare. “Service dogs are animals that should be celebrated for the good they bring to society, and we hope that increased awareness of their working nature leads to a deeper understanding of their important role.”
For additional information on service dogs, visit bettercitiesforpets.com/servicedogs.SOURCE:
Pets have an incomparable ability to improve owners’ lives in a number of ways, so it’s only right that pet parents do the same for them. That’s why, if you’re considering adding a pet to the family, adoption can be a great choice and offers these benefits.
4 Benefits of Pet Adoption
(Family Features) Pets have an incomparable ability to improve owners’ lives in a number of ways, so it’s only right that pet parents do the same for them. That’s why, if you’re considering adding a pet to the family, adoption can be a great choice.
Through pet adoption, you can not only help save dogs and cats from homelessness, but also have the opportunity to experience a lifetime of laughs, snuggles and memories. To unite pet owners with their new furry best friends this year, Mars Petcare celebrated its 10th annual adoption weekend, furthering the Mars Petcare purpose of A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS™.
Consider these benefits of pet adoption and learn more at bettercitiesforpets.com.
Photos courtesy of FotoliaSOURCE:
It’s important to take some pet precautions that allow the whole family to enjoy the holiday safely, as the costumes and excitement can be overwhelming and some of the candy is even dangerous. As you’re filling the candy buckets and assembling the perfect costumes, be sure to heed these tips for a Halloween filled with pet-friendly fun.
Keep Pets Safe this Halloween
(Family Features) Halloween isn’t just for humans; four-legged friends have plenty of opportunity to get in on the fun, too. However, it’s important to take some pet precautions that allow the whole family to enjoy the holiday safely, as the costumes and excitement can be overwhelming and some of the candy is even dangerous.
As you’re filling the candy buckets and assembling the perfect costumes, be sure to heed these tips from the experts at PetSmart for a Halloween filled with pet-friendly fun:
Out and about
If your pet will be joining the family while trick-or-treating, be sure they are visible to motorists by using a reflective collar, harness or leash.
Hazardous food and decorations
Keep the Halloween fun going by establishing some rules for your family and any guests joining the festivities:
Seasonal decorations can also pose a threat:
Don’t forget the fun
Find more tips and tricks for keeping your pets safe this Halloween at PetSmart.com.SOURCE:
No matter the relationship between dog and human, these animals can improve lives in numerous ways. Consider these five ways dogs can make a positive impact on your life and those around you.
5 Ways Dogs Can Improve Lives
(Family Features) Whether playmates or protectors, the human-animal bond is often a powerful connection that goes beyond pure companionship. Dogs typically have many talents and personas – they can be man’s best friend, a canine companion during a difficult time or even a service dog helping veterans and others through daily routines. No matter the relationship between dog and human, these animals can improve lives in numerous ways.
Consider these five ways dogs can make a positive impact on your life and those around you, and find more information at bettercitiesforpets.com.
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock
It’s no surprise that dog owners are more likely to get out and take a walk around the neighborhood. In fact, taking a quick walk with your dog a few times each week can increase general health and may help reduce rates of obesity.
Photo courtesy of Fotolia
If you’re new in town or looking for new friends, use your walks as an opportunity to meet your neighbors and engage with other dogs. Dogs can help make easy introductions to other pet owners and non-pet owners alike, and even potentially help you find your next pet-sitter.
Some animals are trained to provide therapeutic aid and wellbeing. Therapy and facility dogs help normalize environments, such as hospitals and universities, by alleviating fear and giving comfort during difficult experiences. For example, Mars Petcare’s Better Cities For Pets initiative is working to bring the healing power of pets to more children and families nationwide, including a partnership with Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt to support a dedicated facility dog and staff position.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Service dogs can help veterans and others who suffer from post-traumatic stress – yet people may be unprepared to accommodate the unique needs of service dogs. To help educate people on how to interact with an individual who has a service dog, American Humane, which has helped the U.S. military and military animals for 100 years, created a wealth of resources, including these informational videos.
Photo courtesy of iStock
Making the office a pet-friendly zone has its perks. In fact, a Mars Petcare survey shows that having furry friends around the office boosts morale and lessens anxiety, giving you even more of a reason to spend all day, every day, with your pet.SOURCE:
Whether the sun is shining, the leaves are changing colors or there is snow on the ground, these five tips can help you bond with your cat all year long and make sure he is feeling his best.
5 Tips for Keeping Your Cat Happy and Healthy
(Family Features) While the weather may change from summer to fall, your relationship with your feline never goes out of season. Events on the calendar can seem to pile up as the year goes on, but don’t forget to go the extra mile for your pet and show him how much he means to you.
Whether the sun is shining, the leaves are changing colors or there is snow on the ground, these five tips can help you bond with your cat all year long and make sure he is feeling his best.
Photo courtesy of Fotolia
Just like humans and dogs, cats have energy they need to expel throughout the day. Help your cat feel like a member of the family by giving him a dedicated space in the house where you can play together. It can also double as a place to keep his toys.
Even the cutest and cuddliest kitties share a connection with their ancestors, so to respect the animal inside, nourish your pet with his natural desires in mind. One purr-worthy option is CRAVE™ cat food, which is made with high-quality animal protein and no grains. The recipes provide the nutrients needed for a strong, lean body and the energy to chase – even if it’s just a toy around the house.
Cats are curious by nature and almost always looking for something to get their paws on. Have a variety of toys on-hand, such as laser pointers, feather wands and stuffed mice, which can give your cat the chance to practice his pouncing skills. Not only is this a great form of exercise, but it also allows him to exert his instincts to chase.
When considering your cat’s health, don’t forget about oral care. Dental treats such as GREENIES™ Dental Treats help freshen breath and clean your cat’s teeth, helping to keep bad breath from getting in the way of cuddles with your favorite feline.
Don’t let a busy life get in the way of spending quality time and building companionship with your cat. If your schedule is full, try checking off your to-do list with your cat by your side. Fold your laundry or do work in the same room so he knows you’re there. You can also squeeze in snuggle time as you wind down and watch television or read a book before bed.SOURCE:
Despite the fact that cats are more prevalent as pets than dogs, only about one cat per every five dogs receives regular veterinary care, and there are a number of factors that contribute to limited veterinary visits for cats. Consider these tips and tricks to make your cat’s visits to the veterinarian easier.
Keep Up with Your Cat’s Health
There are a number of factors that contribute to limited veterinary visits for cats. According to a survey by Royal Canin, two-thirds of cat owners simply believe cats have fewer health issues than dogs. However, according to the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP), routine check-ups are vital for giving cats long, happy and healthy lives.
Cats age more rapidly than humans, and they are quite adept at hiding sickness and pain, making it difficult to know if there is something wrong that requires veterinary attention. Hidden diseases commonly go untreated for this reason, which is why the Take Your Cat to the Vet initiative was created to spread awareness about the importance of preventative feline veterinary care.
For example, up to one-third of cats over the age of 12 have some form of kidney disease. Managing the progression of the disease, if caught early, can be accomplished with a proper diagnosis and reduced-phosphorous diet. Your veterinarian may recommend an option like one of the Royal Canin Veterinary Diet® Renal Support formulas as part of a treatment program.
Obesity is also a common problem for cats that can lead to more severe health issues down the road. In fact, multiple studies indicate that more than half of the nation’s domestic cats are carrying more weight than they should. A veterinarian can help with dietary recommendations and other suggestions to help trim your cat’s waistline, along with screening for the onset of secondary complications.
Another common cat ailment is urinary stones, which can be extremely painful and cannot normally be detected without professional evaluation. Regular visits to the vet can help assess your cat’s risk for developing stones and determine nutritional changes that may help prevent a problem.
Vet visits are also an opportunity to let your veterinarian know about any behavior changes and implement preventive care measures, which can be more effective than reactive care once a problem is revealed.
However, the very act of getting to the vet can be traumatic for cat owners and cats alike. Repetition is likely to help alleviate those concerns as your cat becomes more accustomed to the process, helping to put you at ease as well. In honor of the Take Your Cat to the Vet initiative, consider these tips and tricks from the experts at Royal Canin and the AAFP to make your cat’s visits to the veterinarian easier:
1. Get your cat familiar with a carrier. Getting your cat into the carrier is often the most difficult part of getting him or her to the vet. Start by leaving the carrier out at all times and make it a safe place by placing food or a cozy towel inside. Using a secure, stable, hard-sided carrier that opens from the top and the front that can also be taken apart in the middle is best. When traveling, it’s also a good idea to place your cat in the carrier rear-first, cover the carrier with a blanket and avoid bumping into things while carrying it.
2. Make the vet visit a positive experience. It’s easy to imagine that vet visits can seem scary to a cat. Feeding your cat veterinary-approved treats from carrier to clinic can help create a positive connection with the trip and distract your pet from the busy waiting room or examination.
3. Take advantage of slow times at the clinic. The waiting room of an animal hospital can be loud and full of unfamiliar animals and smells, making it a chaotic and overwhelming environment. Ask if certain days or times are slower than others. Scheduling appointments at those times may help your cat feel less overwhelmed by a new environment.
4. Give your cat practice exams. In the examination room, your vet will give your cat a full examination. To make your cat comfortable with being touched in such a manner, consider giving him or her practice examinations at home and positively reward your pet for letting you look at and touch his or her stomach, feet, face and ears.
5. Talk to your vet. Your veterinarian is your best partner to help your cat feel comfortable inside and outside the clinic. Discuss with him or her other ideas to help make visits less stressful.
To learn more about the importance of taking your cat the vet, visit royalcanin.com/cat2vetday.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
Wild rabbits have a big appetite and your garden and landscape is like a tempting, bottomless salad bar. And where there's one, there's more: The gestation period for a rabbit averages just 30 days. There’s factual truth behind that old saying, “multiplying like rabbits”! You may enjoy bunnies in storybooks or even as domesticated pets, but wild rabbits can be a devastating problem for your yard. These four-legged foragers can eat your fabulous flowers and prized produce, literally overnight.
(BPT) - You may never see them. They sneak in silently once the sun goes down. They ravage your delicate garden and stunning landscape. If you do happen to catch a glimpse, they'll run fast as lightning to safety so they can dine in your yard while you’re not around.
No, this isn't a plot from some cinematic thriller; it's a daily occurrence for homeowners with outdoor space. Rabbits can quickly take a toll on any size yard, and can easily climb into raised beds and nibble away at your painstakingly planted container creations.
Wild rabbits have a big appetite and your garden and landscape is like a tempting, bottomless salad bar. And where there's one, there's more: The gestation period for a rabbit averages just 30 days. There’s factual truth behind that old saying, “multiplying like rabbits”!
You may enjoy bunnies in storybooks or even as domesticated pets, but wild rabbits can be a devastating problem for your yard. These four-legged foragers can eat your fabulous flowers and prized produce, literally overnight.
To protect your yard from rabbits, you first need to identify their presence. Because they often come out at dawn and sunset, you may rarely see them. According to the animal repellent experts at Bobbex, these are the top signs that you’ve got rabbits:
1. Plant damage low to the ground, often a few inches above the soil
2. A clean, 45-degree angled cut on the end of stems and leaves
3. Woody plants debarked up to 16 inches from the ground
4. Piles of rabbit droppings (dark pea-sized pellets)
5. Tracks: Wild rabbits have five toes on their front feet and four toes on their much longer hind feet.
Check, check, and re-check. If you do catch a glimpse of the furry intruder, you may be able to identify the most common wild rabbit species. Cottontails are common throughout North America, identified by their short tail that resembles a tuft of cotton. Snowshoes are typically found in rocky, mountainous terrain and are identified by their large feet with white fur during winter and rusty brown fur during warmer months. Finally, the speedy jackrabbit is found in the Western U.S. and is known for its incredibly long ears and powerful hind legs.
Once you know you have rabbits ravaging your yard, it's time to take action. There are a few ways to safely repel them before the damage is done.
Step 1: Build and bury barriers
Fencing can be an effective way to keep rabbits at bay. If you're targeting rabbits, the fence only needs to be 3 feet tall as they are unlikely to jump over it. However, you’ll have to bury the fence underground since rabbits are experts at burrowing up to a foot below the surface to access a tasty food source.
Step 2: Repel and remove temptation
Bobbex-R Repellent is all natural, environmentally friendly and proven effective at protecting ornamental plantings from small, four-legged garden critters such as rabbits. Usable in any weather, it won't burn plants or wash off. Use it as a bulb dip to deter underground damage or spray it at the mouth of burrows to prevent animals from re-entering. It’s safe for humans, pets, birds and aquatic life.
Step 3: Remove the creature's comforts
Many homeowners are surprised to find rabbits have made a home under stairs or in a shed. If you don't want rabbits nesting and raising families in your yard, remove brush and other debris that could provide them easy shelter and spray a repellent in those areas to maintain rabbit-free hiding places.
These three simple steps will help you safely repel rabbits so you can fully enjoy the beauty and bounty of your outdoor space.
To learn more, visit www.bobbex.com where you’ll also find repellents for other common wild foragers such as deer. Try Bobbex Deer, compared to nine other repellents in category, it was rated 93 percent effective, second only to a fence at 100 percent.
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