Protect Your dog from these seasonal dangers!

Image by jwvein from Pixabay 

‘Tis the season!

More specifically, it’s that time of year to proactively protect your dog (and of course other pets) from seasonal dangers! While many of the dangers are associated with the Holiday Season, not all of them are. Just as many hazards are associated with the Fall and Winter Seasons. Keep reading below to learn how to best protect your beloved pet from all seasonal hazards!

 

Pet Dangers Associated with Fall/Winter

The Fall season presents a variety of potential dangers to our dogs (and pets)! One in particular with most kids being home-schooled due to the Coronavirus. 

Keep School Supplies Away from Pets!

                    Gábor Adonyi from Pixabay

School Supplies

Keep curious noses and paws away from common school supplies like glue sticks, pencils and pens, crayons and scented magic markers! Smaller items are even more dangerous because it only takes a second for a pet to ingest things like small erasers, staples, batteries, pushpins, paper and binder clips, rubber bands, magnets and more. Although many of these items may not present a toxic threat, stomach upset and blockages are possible if your pet ingests one of these items! Remember, dogs explore their world first with their nose and then their mouths! 

Snacks

Empty Snack Bags Can Suffocate Pets

          Benjamin Sz-J. from Pixabay

Another danger associated with homeschooling kids includes snacks and drinks. Many snacks while tasty for our kids, can pose a threat to nosy K9s! Grapes and raisins, salty pretzels and popcorn and even empty potato chip and other snack bags can pose a suffocation threat to pets who unknowingly put their heads inside the bag to lick the salt or eat up the crumbs! Once inside the bag, your pet’s breathing can tighten the empty bag around their throat and it may be too late before you notice it!

Many snacks also contain the sugar-free sweetener called xylitol. While not harmful to humans, this popular additive IS toxic to dogs and is found in a variety of candy, gum, mints, snacks, cookies and even sodas. So read all labels carefully and keep all snacks and drinks out of reach from your dog!

 
Click here to Learn the 11+ Surprising Products That Contain Xylitol

 

    R Schönbrodt-Rühl from Pixabay

Autumn also poses other potential dangers including:

  • Snakes getting ready to hibernate,
  • Mushrooms ready to harvest, and even 
  • Piles of raked leaves!

Your dog may not be the only creature who loves leaf piles! Unfortunately, you may not see them until they have latched onto your pet. Insects like ticks, earwigs, spiders and centipedes love to hide in these piles for shelter, warmth and breeding. Even snakes and rodents may take up residence in leaf piles.

Avoidance is the best way to protect your dog from what lurks in leaf piles. But, if your dog or other pet gets into a pile of leaves, bathe and then carefully inspect and remove any insects trying to hitch a ride!

Getting Ready for Winter 

                  Shutterbug75 from Pixabay

Many of our winterizing preparations can cause toxic harm to our dogs and other pets. These include:

  • The use of rat and mouse poisons/rodenticides
  • Engine coolant/antifreeze spills 
  • Rock salt and other ice-melting products like water softener salt pellets; homemade deicers with dish soap, rubbing alcohol, and warm water; or a water and vinegar mix; or fireplace ashes.

 

Pet Dangers Associated with the Holidays

         S Jutzeler, suju-foto from Pixabay

The holidays are right around the corner and that means some additional seasonal hazards for your beloved pets.

Toxic and Poisonous Holiday Plants

  • Mistletoe
  • Amaryllis
  • Lilies (for cats)
  • Holly & Berries 
  • Daffodils (especially the bulbs)
  • Note: Traditionally, poinsettias have been considered poisonous to pets. Actually, they are non-to-mildly toxic and prone to giving your pet a mild rash if they brush against it or mild stomach discomfort if they ingest it.
  • Christmas Trees & Plants treated with a pesticide pose a serious risk (and potential death) to young pets including puppies and kittens. 

Other Toxic Items

      PublicDomainPictures                 from Pixabay

Batteries: Traditionally, dogs ingest MORE batteries around Christmas than any other time of the year! Keep both old and new batteries out of reach!

Potpourri: Often a good-smelling temptation for your pet that contains toxic essential oils, chemical perfumes, pine cones, dried fruit, cloves and flowers. Bottom line, potpourri poses not only a choking hazard but pose potential poisoning for your pet. Keep it high and out of reach! (This includes all liquid potpourri too.)

Popcorn Strings, Tinsel and Ribbons: If your dog or cat gets hold of strings of popcorn, ribbons, strings or tinsel, there is a strong possibility of choking! 

Ornaments and Decorations: Pets are dazzled by ornaments and decorations as much as their human guardians. But curious noses, paws and mouths can mean trouble! For the best protection, block off access to the Christmas, decorations, candles, pine needles and gifts when you cannot closely supervise your pets. Place breakable decorations higher on the tree or shelves to protect your pets if they break. Also, never hang homemade salt dough ornaments on the tree … they can actually kill your pets if ingested!

Trash: Keep all trash locked away and tightly secured from curious noses and mouths. Special holiday foods can spell trouble for your nosy and hungry pets and even wildlife!

Holiday Foods That Are Off-Limits for Your Pets!

This alphabetical list below is by no means exclusive, but it will go a long way in protecting the pets in your home at the holidays!

BlueCheeseAndGrapesAreToxicToPets

   Linda Roisum from Pixabay

  • Alcoholic drinks (including egg nog, beer, wine and other spirits)
  • Artificial sweetener called xylitol
  • Blue cheese
  • Bread Dough (raw, not baked)
  • Caffeine (including coffee, tea and chocolate)
  • Chocolate, cocoa, chocolate coins
  • Cooked bones and corn cobs
  • Dairy (including butter, milk, cream and cheese)
  • Desserts
  • Dressings
  • Fatty meat scraps and skin, drippings and gravy
  • Fruitcake, mince pie and Christmas/Plum puddings
  • Grapes, raisins and currants
  • Ham (including bones), bacon and sausage
  • Hanukkah doughnuts: Sufganiyot
    KeepStuffingAwayFromPets

      Marlita Annette from Pixabay

  • Hanukkah potato pancakes: Latkes 
  • Hanukkah pastry: Rugelach 
  • Macadamia nuts 
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions, leeks, chives, garlic and scallions
  • Pistachios
  • Spices (including sage, baking powder and soda, nutmeg)
  • Stuffing
  • Walnuts

Keep this blog handy as you plan and celebrate the holidays safely with family and pets!

Guest Blog: What’s New In Poo?

Courtesy: Pexels.com

Ever been woken up at three in the morning by the cold nose of your dog, whining to go out? On the one hand, you want nothing more than to roll over and pull the covers over your head, hoping the moment will pass. But on the other hand, you worry about what your carpet might look like if you don’t get up … so, of course, you get up.

 

Diarrhea

Bristol Stool ChartDiarrhea is an inconvenient, smelly, sleep-depriving condition resulting from abnormal gastrointestinal (GI) function. Poop comes in a variety of consistencies and colors. A scoring chart, like the Bristol Stool Chart pictured here, presents seven categories of stool, helping standardize parameters for consistency.

There are two types of diarrhea:

  1. Large bowel diarrhea: the most common type with signs of frequent straining (3-7 bowel movements/day), mucous, and soft-to-watery stool (which may contain blood).
  2. Small bowel diarrhea: less common, and results in once or twice a day large amounts of liquid stool.

Typically, these two types of diarrhea have quite different causes.

 

Causes Behind Dog Diarrhea

The role of the intestines is to break down food and absorb small nutrients, while the colon absorbs water and leaves behind excrement we call “poop.”

Diarrhea occurs when there is a disruption of the cells lining the gut and/or loss of the protective mucus layer. Without the protective mucus layer or fully functioning cells, large molecules are now able to enter the bloodstream and body, triggering the immune system and creating inflammation. This immune response leads to a malfunction of the intestines in which the water is not adequately removed, leaving behind a watery mess we call “diarrhea.”

Although you may never know the culprit, potential causes of K9 diarrhea include:

  • Parasitic worms
  • Giardia
  • Bacterial or viral infections
  • “Garbage gut:” ingesting plants, mulch, dead animals, and things outside
  • Stress colitis: anxiety-inducing changes in the environment, people, loud noises, etc. (1) Even the stress and anxiety felt at the groomers or boarding kennels can impact and heighten stress-hormones (i.e. cortisol, adrenaline) that then alter the normal function and motility of the GI tract. (2)  This stress, or disease, can also activate dormant infections in the gut, such as Clostridium Perfringens (i.e. C. Perfringens, which produces harmful toxins) or Giardia (which causes maldigestion and malabsorption) resulting in diarrhea.

Overall, although diarrhea can creep up suddenly (referred to as “acute”), if recurring or lasts more than 3 days (referred to as chronic), with no signs of improvement, it may be a concern. If your dog is experiencing chronic-recurring or ongoing diarrhea, visit a veterinarian to get a diagnosis of the problem and appropriate treatment.

 

The Microbiome

Courtesy: www.AnimalBiome.com

The intestinal tract is a complicated organ. Recent human and animal investigations are revealing the important and positive interactions between helpful bacteria and fungi in the gut (the microbiome), hormones, and immune cells in contributing to a healthy life. (3,4)

When healthy and functioning normally, the gut contains a large variety of virus, bacteria, and fungi which live symbiotically (in a mutually beneficial way) within the body. The body provides food (i.e., fiber, starch, sugars) for the bacteria and in turn, they make healthy nutrients, such as Vitamin B, Vitamin K, and short-chain fatty acids, to be absorbed by the body. Studies have documented that in the presence of anxiety, depression, IBD, or chronic diarrhea there is also a disbalance of the microbiome (with significantly less bacteria variety) termed “dysbiosis.” (5)

“You Are What You Eat” Applies to Your Dog Too!

You’ve probably heard the old expression, “you are what you eat.” Well, that also applies to your pets! Food, chemicals, and medications all impact the health of the microbiome. Since the microbiome – which includes bacteria from the mouth to bum – plays such an important role in overall health, it is best not to treat diarrhea the traditional way using antibiotics such as Metronidazole unless it is absolutely necessary. (6) While antibiotics may be effective at treating diarrhea, they are also indiscriminate killers of bacteria and wreak havoc on the important bacteria of the microbiome.

 

Relieving Diarrhea And Restoring Normal Function

Mother Nature has her own recipe to repair and promote a healthy gastrointestinal tract called Colostrum, which is the DoggyStat, Natural and Rapid K9 Diarrhea Relieffirst milk produced by mammals immediately after giving birth. It is a nutrient-rich fluid that contains immune, growth, and tissue repair factors. Colostrum contains a significant number of complementary components that act as natural anti-microbial agents to actively stimulate the maturation and repair of the immune system and “leaky gut.” (5)

A new twist on an old idea, Anubis Bio has harnessed the power of colostrum along with eggs and a variety of protective proteins to develop DoggyStat: an all-natural food supplement that has been used to quickly improve many causes of diarrhea with 1-2 servings within 36 hours.

What’s more, it is 100% made in the USA. Just one packet of DoggyStat works on any size dog at any age. Dogs think it’s a tasty treat; plus it’s easy to administer as a powder on their food as shown in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhM5-F2JLuQ. DoggyStat can also be dissolved in a small amount of water (1/8 cup or 15-20 ml) if you need to syringe feed.

Great results have also been achieved using DoggyStat in combination with a bland diet made of rice and boiled chicken, as well as prebiotic and probiotic supplements for a few days to address K9 diarrhea safely and naturally.

My suggestion is to keep DoggyStat on hand for those middle of the night diarrhea occurrences so you and your dog can get a good night’s sleep!


>> Before you purchase DoggyStat, click here to receive a discount on our “We Recommend” page! <<


Meet our Guest Blogger: Dr. Khodakhah

Dr. Khodakhah works as a small animal relief veterinarian.  Following her passion to help wildlife, stray animals, and owners in need, she directs international veterinary spay/neuter programs and works with the Wolf Conservation Center (NY). She leverages her entrepreneurial spirit and experience to drive meaningful change in the veterinary profession, becoming a Certified Professional Coach to help arm young doctors with the tools they needed to succeed. With a similar mission, she produces a podcast, Time to PAWS, which features common experiences in vet med, promoting opportunities, leaning into fear, while building strategies for resilience. She is an Advisory Board Member of several organizations and enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, good food, and scuba diving.

You can learn more about Dr. Khodakhah on her LinkedIn and Facebook pages.


References

  1. E. Mondo, M. Barone, M. Soverini, F. D’Amico, M. Cocchi, C. Petrulli, M. Mattioli, G. Marliani, M. Candela and P.A. Accorsia,∗. (Jan 2020). Gut microbiome structure and adrenocortical activity in dogs with aggressive and phobic behavioral disorders. Heliyon; 6(1).
  2. Megan Clapp, Nadia Aurora, Lindsey Herrera, Manisha Bhatia, Emily Wilen, and Sarah Wakefield. (Sep 2017). Gut microbiota’s effect on mental health: The gut-brain axis Clin Pract. 15; 7(4): 987.
  3. Rachel Pilla* and Jan S. Suchodolski. (Jan 2020). The Role of the Canine Gut Microbiome and Metabolome in Health and Gastrointestinal Disease Front. Vet. Sci., 14.
  4. M. Hasan Mohajeri, Robert J. M. Brummer, Robert A. Rastall, Rinse K. Weersma, Hermie J. M. Harmsen, Marijke Faas, and Manfred Eggersdorfer. (2018). The role of the microbiome for human health: from basic science to clinical applications. Eur J Nutr.; 57(Suppl 1): 1–14.
  5. Jin Young Yoon, Soo Jung Park, and Jae Hee Cheon. (Jan 2014). Effect of Colostrum on the Symptoms and Mucosal Permeability in Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Randomized Placebo-controlled Study. Intestinal Res.; 12(1): 80–82.
  6. Suchodolski JS, Dowd SE, Westermarck E, Steiner JM, Wolcott RD, Spillmann T, et al. (2009). The effect of the macrolide antibiotic tylosin on microbial diversity in the canine small intestine as demonstrated by massive parallel 16S rRNA gene sequencing. BMC Microbiol. 9:210.

Check out our Tip (and others) in the new Redfin Article!

Moving can be difficult on pets but with the expert tips below, the transition can be smoother and easier!

🥳🥳 We’ve been featured in RedFin’s latest article about How to Help Your Pet Adjust to Their New Home!

With all the great #ExpertTips in this article, you can make the transition to a new home better for you and your pets.

Please share this article too to help other pet owners and their pets!

GUEST BLOG: 5 Dog Safety Tips for Fall

Image by sevenpixx from Pixabay.

As summer eases into Fall, it’s still important to remain vigilant about your canine’s safety while you’re sharing fun and adventurous activities with your four-legged best friend. Always be proactive about minimizing – and avoiding – potential injuries and dangers like heat exhaustion, dehydration, overheated cars, parasites and even water hazards. 

Remember, your pup depends on you to be on your guard and protect him from injury and danger. Follow the 5 safety tips below even in the Fall when warm temperatures and other dangers are still present. 

1. Stay Cool

Heat exhaustion is a common phenomenon experienced by dogs during warmer months. Even “mild” weather may be too hot for your dog. When your dog begins to pant heavily, become lethargic and unenthusiastic, get him to a cool place and encourage him to drink water.

A dog cooling mat or air conditioning can also help keep your dog cool and prevent him from becoming overheated. 

Also, apart from staying cool, also protect your dog against skin cancer through the use of dog-friendly or baby sunscreens Ideally, you should apply sunblock on your dog every 4 hours and each time after they swim. Protect sun-sensitive areas like noses, lips, tips of the ears and tail and even the belly and groin.

Image by Maguiss from Pixabay 

2. Stay Hydrated

Proper hydration will also help keep your dog cool and safe during the warmer months. Ensure they always have access to plenty of clean, cool water. Since they will be consuming more water than normal, make sure they have at least twice the usual amount of water available at all times. 

You might also want to consider making the switch to a wet food diet during this time so your dog takes in more moisture. Also, liquids such as frozen chicken and beef broth goes a long way in encouraging them to drink more to stay cool and fully hydrated.

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay 

3. Never Leave Your Dog Alone in the Car

Never leave a dog alone in the car. While it might not be so harmful during the winter, in the summer you should never leave your dog alone in the car, no matter how short the amount of time is. A cracked window does not allow enough ventilation to keep up with how quickly a car can heat up. So keep your dog safe and at home in the air conditioning to ensure their safety and overall well-being. 

In short, your dog cannot survive in a hot car.

Image by Laureetta Williams from Pixabay 

4. Parasites and Pests

Parasites and pests such as ticks, fleas and even mosquitoes can pose some real threats to your dog’s health. Work with your veterinarian for necessary precautions and appropriate steps to protect against parasites and pests. Also get your dog inoculated against diseases such as heartworms and hookworms, both of which are more prevalent during the warmer seasons.

Image by Kevin Phillips from Pixabay 

5. Water Hazards

Who doesn’t love a trip to the beach, a refreshing swim, or even a canoe ride. All of these are fun and amazing, but they can also leave your dog exposed to potential water hazards.

Most people believe dog are natural swimmers, but this is not always true. While many dogs do love the water, not all dogs are natural swimmers; especially when it comes to specific breeds that are larger with deeper chests. In addition,  even the best swimmers can be challenged with being able to safely get out of the water (especially in pools) or dealing with unexpected water creatures. Always keep a close eye on your dog around the water to protect him. 

Before enjoying the water with your dog, teach them pool exit strategies; have them wear a bright-colored and well-fitted life vest and keep an eye out for dangerous currents and riptides that can endanger even the strongest dog. 

 


Meet our Guest Blogger: Pete Decker

Pete Decker is the lead editor at TheGoodyPet.com. For the past 20 years, Pete has been working professionally with dogs, and he has spent time volunteering in animal shelters across the USA and around the world. Now, Pete dedicates his time towards TheGoodyPet, a pet educational website made by pet lovers for pet lovers.

You can learn more about Pete on his website or by following TheGoodyPet on Twitter or Facebook.


 

RECALL: Sunshine Mills Dog Food Products

Recall Notice

UPDATE: On October 8th, Sunshine Mills, Inc., based in Alabama, expanded their voluntary recall of dog food products for aflatoxin, a naturally-occurring mold by-product. No illnesses have been reported as of October 8th.

After the initial recall on September 2nd, an investigation revealed corn-based pet food products (produced between April 3-5, 2020) came from a single load of corn with elevated levels of aflatoxin.

The recall now includes all the brands listed below:

  • Hunter’s Special
  • Sprout
  • Champ
  • Thrifty
  • Top Runner
  • Sportsmans Pride
  • Old Glory
  • Field Trial
  • Whiskers & Tails
  • Good Dog
  • Paws Happy Life
  • Pet Expert
  • Principle
  • Retriever
  • River Bend

No other Sunshine Mills Inc. products are affected at this time.

For more information, including a complete list of recalled products, Lot Codes and UPC Codes, visit the FDA website

Sources: Dog Food Advisor and Truth About Pet Food

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On September 2, 2020, Sunshine Mills, Inc., issued a voluntary recall for some of their dog food products. Sunshine Mills manufactures dog food products under the brand names of Family Pet®, Heartland Farms®, or Paws Happy Life®.

This voluntary recall was issued due to elevated levels of Aflatoxin beyond acceptable limits. Aflatoxin is a naturally-occurring mold/fungus (from the growth of Aspergillus flavus on foods) which can infect pets if consumed in significant quantities. 

 

Aflatoxin – and other molds – can cause serious illnesses in people or pets with a weakened, suppressed, or compromised immune system, underlying lung disease, or asthma.

 

The elevated levels of Aflatoxin were discovered through routine testing by the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry with a single 4-pound bag of dog food. While no adverse health effects related to these recalled products have been reported to date, Sunshine Mills, in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, issued a voluntary recall. 

The recalled products were distributed nationally in retail stores. There are no other Family Pet®, Heartland Farms®, or Paws Happy Life® products or other lot codes of these products affected by this precautionary recall.

 

The Sunshine Mills Products Recalled

 

 

Recalled Dog Food Products from Sunshine Mills, Inc.

 

Recalled Dog Food from Sunshine Mills, Inc.

 

Symptoms of Illness from Aflatoxin Consumption

Dogs that consumed any of the recalled products and are exhibiting the following symptoms should be seen by their veterinarian:

  • Reluctance to eat
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy or sluggishness
  • A yellowish tint to the eyes or gums
  • Diarrhea 

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately stop using any of the recalled products and return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers may contact Customer Service at Sunshine Mills at 800-705-2111, Monday – Friday from 7am to 4pm Central time or via email at customer.service@sunshinemills.com

Sources: Truth About Pet Food, VCA Hospitals, and the FDA.


© 2020. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

Dog Kibble: The Ugly Truth Behind Meat By-Products

Kibble for dogs is convenient and offers a long shelf life. But there is much more than meets the eye when it comes to commercial dog food especially when it comes to what is really in your dog’s food!

 Keep reading to learn about the not-so-pretty facts behind the common meat by-products found in most kibbles.

 

Since 1956, commercial kibble has become a common and convenientColorful Kibble Dog Food staple in most households with dogs. So much so that in just 2019, Nestle Purina Petcare Company sold $1.99 billion followed by Mars Petcare at $1.31 billion in just the United States alone!

But while dry dog food is a useful convenience in our busy lives, there are potentially serious and unseen issues when it comes to feeding your dog dry kibble as a day-to-day diet. Issues you will never see when you look at those little dried squares! But what you can’t see can hurt your dog.

 

The Kibble Manufacturing Process

Manufacturing kibble involves extreme pressurized steam and temperatures. This alone negatively affects the overall quality nutrition and vitamins as much as 50%! This process also kills the beneficial and natural enzymes your dog’s body needs every day. 

 

Meat By-Products in K9 Kibble

Pet food labels are full of “meat by-products” and “meat by-product meals.” But what exactly does that mean? But even more importantly, what does that mean for your dog’s health and safety?

According to the dictionary, a by-product is “a secondary or incidental product, as in a process of manufacture.” In other words, animal by-products (also called offal) come from the leftovers – or meat processing scrap – after all the premium meat for human consumption has been removed. At the end of the day, dog food manufacturers use meat by-products because they are much cheaper to use in dog food instead of premium cuts of meats fit for human consumption.

While some veterinary organizations and even “experts” may insist there is no harm in feeding your dog by-products, you need to consider the following three points.  

While it’s much less revolting for a consumer to read “meat by-products” instead of “spleen, lungs, intestines, blood and plasma” on their dog’s food label, there is no way to guarantee the consistency of the specific ingredients included as “by-products” and the actual nutrition in each product.

While meat by-products may not come from inferior or unsafe meat ingredients, most are considered unfit for human consumption. Also, most by-products are further processed into meals or powders with high temperatures which can affect the overall nutrition and protein quality of these meals or powders (just like mentioned above in the general manufacturing process).

Most meat by-products are listed generically instead of listing the source (species) of the meat. If your dog is allergic to certain kinds of meats, this could pose a very real danger for your dog if he eats meat by-products his system cannot tolerate.

While it may seem you are feeding your dog nutritious and healthy dog food from the commercials and labels, the excessive processing – more accurately, overcooking – has very negative effects on the actual nutrition your dog is – or isn’t – getting which can lead to serious, even life-threatening health issues over an extended period.

 Also, another critical factor in animal by-products is how they are handled after slaughter. Much of it is not safely stored (like the premium meat for human consumption) which can lead to the presence of mold, bacteria and worse before being processed and included in dog food.

Did you also know that legally, generic meat by-products can include diseased, dying or dead zoo animals, roadkill, spoiled supermarket meat and euthanized animals? It explains how traces of a euthanasia drug was found in dog and cat foods and treats. (Admitted to by the former AAFCO, American Feed Control Officials, President Hersh Pendell via a YouTube Video.)

What Should a Dog Owner Do?

Do your own research for your dog’s specific needs, health and activity level. Finding animal or meat by-products in your dog’s food does not make it automatically bad; but it can mean it is made with cheaper ingredients.

Make sure the experts you rely on for accurate information are supported by dog food consumers just like you, not the pet food companies who have a lot of profit at stake, literally billions of dollars!

Even if you need to feed your dog a dry kibble diet, find the best one possible. Then add some fresh ingredients to boost the overall nutrition, vitamins, minerals and enzymes with these great tips from the Dogs Naturally Magazine: 15 Tips to Improve Your Dog’s Diet Today.

Below are well-known, independent experts in the pet industry who can give you the best information.  

  1. Susan Thixton, Truth About Pet Food & Publisher of the PetsumerReport
  2. Rodney Habib, Pet Nutrition Blogger & Founder of Planet Pets
  3. Whole Dog Journal
  4. Dogs Naturally Magazine
  5. Association for Pet Food Safety (sister website of TruthAboutPetFood)

When you know better, you can do better for your beloved canine and the quality of his life, health and happiness!

 

Additional Reading:

Truth About Pet Food: Say Bye, Bye to Pet Foods with By-Products

Cummings Veterinary Medical Center: Don’t Be Bothered By By-Products

Dog Food Advisor: The Truth About Animal By-Products in Dog Food

Modern Farmer: Something’s Rotten in the Pet Food Industry

Dogs Naturally Magazine: Why 99% of Dog Food is Fake

 

Image Credits:

Mat Coulton from Pixabay 

Denise Coyle from Pixabay 

Komsan Boonde from Pixabay 

Salah Ait Mokhtar from Pixabay 

Ludwig Willimann from Pixabay 

StockSnap from Pixabay 

Free-Photos from Pixabay 


 

Together, We Honor American K9 Heroes!

Did you know dogs have served our country as far back as World War I?

And each story is as extraordinary as each individual dog.

 

American K9 Heroes Logo

American K9 Heroes is dedicated to highlighting and supporting the training, service, expertise, heroics and well-deserved retirement of our police and military dogs.

Each K9 hero selected will be honored with a limited-production plush toy replica with their story and available for sale to support the dogs who protected our freedom.

Just like their handlers, our military and police K9s go to work every day not knowing if they will ever see their home or loved ones again.

These dogs are trained to save American lives and sacrifice their own lives if asked through a handler’s command. Since WWI, these dogs have performed heroic acts.

 

Click here to learn more about US War Dogs.
Click here to learn about the 9 movies honoring military canines.

 

 

Smoky, the Tiny World War II War Dog Hero

Monument to Smoky the War Dog

Courtesy: Facebook

Smoky, a four-pound, 7 inches tall Yorkshire Terrier, proves war dogs come in all shapes and sizes. Found in the New Guinea jungle by an American soldier during WWII, Smoky was later sold to another soldier, Corporal William A. Wynne from Cleveland, OH. Wynne and Smoky stayed together for the next two years of the war and Wynne credits his dog with saving his life by guiding him away from the incoming fire on a transport ship. In addition, Smoky survived the relentless heat, limited food rations, typhoons, air raids, combat missions and even a 30ft parachute jump (she had her own special parachute)! Smoky has also been credited with saving 250 US soldiers during World War II.

 

Smoky Goes On to Serve as the 1st Therapy Dog

Smoky is also now recognized as the first therapy dog, as she spent many hours both during the war and back home visiting veterans and entertaining them with the varied collections of tricks that Wynne taught her. After the war, Smoky and Wynne made numerous TV appearances together, performing tricks and telling their amazing story. Smoky lived in Cleveland with Wynne and his family until her death in 1957 at age 14. On Veterans Day in 2005, a memorial for Smoky was unveiled in the Rocky Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks in Lakewood, Ohio. The statue features the tiny dog sitting inside a combat helmet, smiling her trademark smile.

 

Click here to Rent the Short Film “Angel in a Foxhole” about Smoky.

 

Our Heroic Police and Military War Dogs

It wasn’t until I was in the service that I really appreciated dogs. I saw firsthand the loyalty that they had for their trainers and their handlers. These dogs were special, highly trained K9s unlike the ones that I had when I was younger. They were trained to do one job … to save American lives through various duties.

After I got out of the service I continued to have dogs as my pets. But it wasn’t until I met a veteran who had adopted his dog after both of them had served two tours in Iraq. We met a few times and he told me about military dog training. It is a rigorous training very few can pass. His dog sniffed out bombs. He would walk with his dog who would alert him if dangers were apparent and he would trust the dog’s instincts explicitly. He also told stories of dogs in the act of performing their duties being maimed and killed in action (KIA). These are dogs dedicated to their handler and would do anything including risking their lives for a treat and a little love.

 

American K9 Heroes is Born

My background is in the toy industry and one day while waiting to get my hair cut I looked out the window and noticed a big burly guy walking a dog on a leash that was no bigger than a hamster. That immediately got me thinking about making a small replica dog to honor the many dogs and handlers that served our nation in the military and police.  We needed to bring to the forefront the many stories of the bravery these dogs showed daily. We needed to tell stories of the dogs who gave up their lives so military personnel could go home to their loved ones once again.

When I got home, I called a veteran friend of mine who is also in the plush animal toy business and told him about my idea and he was ready to go. Our biggest hurdle was to find a manufacturer that could make our product in the USA. After a lot of research and phone calls, we finally found a manufacturer who could work with us at a reasonable price.

We now had the mission, product, manufacturer and a network of salespeople! The next step was getting our cause out on social media and finally found someone who was as passionate as we were about paying tribute to these incredible and heroic dogs.

 

Join our Mission to Honor American K9 Heroes

We are looking for just 10,000 supporters to donate $5.00 each!

Part of our profit will be donated to police dog foundations and the organizations that reunite military dogs with their trainers/handlers; or if necessary, find new homes for them after their service and throughout their retirement.

Join our mission, share with your friends and help spread the word about the valorous stories of our beloved military and police dogs and the veterans who were their handlers.

 


We need your help in honoring these K9 veterans by telling their stories.  Who doesn’t love dogs? Who doesn’t love veterans?

Donate through our website: American K9 Heroes Today!


 

Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jim Blankshain is the President of American K9 Heroes since 2018.

Website: www.Americank9Heroes.com

LinkedIn: Jim Blankshain

Facebook: American K9 Heroes

 

 

 

Who is the Better Pet Parent?

 

It’s undeniable, we love our pets! Most of us even regard our pets as an integral part of our family instead of just animals who share our home.

In return, our pets reward us with unconditional love and devotion each and every day.

 

But, Who is the Better Pet Parent?

Since pets can’t voice their opinions, Porch.com tried to do it for them in a recent survey of over 1,000 pet parents living with their partner to find out, who IS the better pet parent!


What Kind of Pet Parent are You?


From which gender has the better pet parenting skills, who assumes most of the responsibility and day-to-day care for their pets to what pet parents fight over, the results may – or may not – reveal your own belief of who is the better pet parent!

 

Click here to see the full survey results at Porch.com!

 

 

Taking Care of our Dogs During Coronavirus

Greetings from Bella and Dublin!

Woofs from Bella and Dublin!

It’s definitely a crazy time and lots of conflicting information coupled with lots of uncertainty!

Like you, we are hunkered down here in Northern Nevada and waiting for the “all clear” signal to go back to living our lives “normally.”

But in the meantime, I’m bonding even closer with the fur-kids (IF that’s even possible!), learning a lot through webinars and taking a serious look at new, creative ways to do business to minimize personal contact. Yes, it often feels frustrating and very uncertain, but times of hardship and “necessity” are invaluable in ramping up new ways of doing things!

I’m sure, like me, you’ve heard more than enough about the coronavirus! I would like to (quickly) address just one area to hopefully dispel some misinformation and stop the unfortunate actions on the part of some pet owners. This is from our upcoming April newsletter.

 

Can My Pet Get and Pass Along Coronavirus?

Sadly, there are reports of people abandoning their pets because of the unfounded belief that their dogs and cats can get, carry and transmit the coronavirus.

In a nutshell, this is not true and there is NO evidence backing up this claim. So please keep your pet in your home with you where they belong.


CLARIFICATION: There IS a Canine Coronavirus (CCV), but the current outbreak has nothing to do with the CCV virus.

Can My Pet Transmit Coronavirus?


The WHO, CDC, AVMA and AKC all agree there is no imminent threat from our pets for transmitting the Coronavirus. The CDC says the virus is spreading from person-to-person only. The AVMA also assures that petting a dog’s fur is low-risk because the virus survives best on smooth surfaces.

 

Remember, the coronavirus is transmitted via respiratory droplets from human-to-human. So follow the AKC’s advice to consistently follow basic hygiene in thoroughly washing your hands with soap and water before and after contact with any pet. 

 

For further information, watch the “COVID-19 Update on Pets” video with Rodney Habib, Dr. Karen Becker and Dr. Sarah Caddy of the University of Cambridge.

Ok, ’nuff said!

 

Play and Engage Your Dog!

The pets of our lives enhance and enrich our lives especially in uncertain times like these!

Instead of stressing out over every news report, spend extra quality time with your beloved pet and enhance your overall Engage Your Dog With Some New Tricks!relationship and bond! Below are some great ideas to keep you and your dog active even as you shelter-in-place.

People-Oriented Dog Play

    1. Hide-and-Seek
    2. Tug-of-War

Object-Oriented Dog Play

    1. Find It
    2. Put it Away
    3. Fetch

Task-Oriented Dog Play

    1. Tricks
    2. Puzzle-Solving
    3. Dig Here

To learn more about other games to play with your resident canine, click on the links below.

 


As we all move through this uncertain time, stay safe, healthy and positive. Remember, this too shall pass.

Remember, this too shall pass.

 

RECALL: Icelandic Plus Dog & Cat Treats

 

Thankfully it’s been pretty quiet when it comes to product recalls for our beloved pets.

But on Monday, March 23rd, the FDA published a new recall for Whole Capelin Fish Pet Treats made by IcelandicPlus LLC of Fort Washington, PA. The recall was issued because some of the fish “exceeded the FDA compliance guidelines for fish larger than 5 inches.” While there have been no reports of illness as of the date of publication, Icelandic+ is cooperating with the recall because of a possible health risk. 

 

Icelandic+

The FDA has determined that salt-cured, dried, or fermented un-eviscerated fish larger than 5 inches have been linked to outbreaks of botulism poisoning in humans between 1981 and 1987 and again in 1991. 

Icelandic Plus says that as of March 23rd, “there have been no reported illnesses of dogs, cats or people in connection with the recalled product.” In addition, there are no positive test results for Clostridium botulinum (botulism poisoning) in connection with the Capelin product.

IcealandicPlus-Capelin-Whole-Fish-Pet-Treat-Recall.jpg

The recalled product comes in a:

  1. Clear plastic tube (2.5 ounces); or
  2. Clear plastic bag (1.5 or 2.5 ounces)

Both the tubes and packages are printed with either:

  • Icelandic+ Capelin WHOLE FISH, PURE FISH TREATS FOR DOGS; or
  • Icelandic+ Capelin PURE FISH TREATS FOR CATS.

The recalled UPC codes are:

  • 8 5485400775 9;
  • 8 5485400711 7; and
  • 8 5485400757 5.

The recalled lot numbers are 02/2020 to 02/2022.

The Entire USA is Included in the Recall

The recalled product was shipped to distributors for sale to independent retail pet specialty stores throughout the USA.

 

Botulism Poisoning: What You Need to Know

The botulism toxin can cause severe symptoms including death in both animals eating tainted products as well as people handling the contaminated product or coming in contact with exposed and tainted surfaces.

Common symptoms of botulism poisoning include:

  • Dizziness;
  • Blurred or double vision;
  • Trouble speaking, swallowing or breathing;
  • Muscle weakness;
  • Distended abdomen; and
  • Constipation.

Pets or people experiencing any of these symptoms should seek immediate medical help.

 

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately stop feeding any of the recalled products and return it to the store where it was purchased for a refund.  Consumers may contact the company at 857-246-9559, Monday – Friday from 8am-5pm EST.

Sources: The Dog Food Advisor and the FDA.

 

© 2020. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

RECALL: Carnivora Fresh Frozen Patties for Dogs and Cats

On June 15, 2020, a voluntary recall for Carnivora Fresh Frozen Patties for Dogs and Cats was issued. This recall is unique because it involves potential contamination with E. coli O157 a particularly dangerous strain of E. coli bacteria for humans

This specific strain of E. coli can cause cross-contamination and serious, even life-threatening illnesses in humans by simply handling the contaminated product. As of June 12th, four cases of human illness have been reported in Canada. Approximately 1,803 affected units were sold in Canada starting on January 13, 2020 until the recall. 

 

The Risk Behind E. coli O157

E. coli O157 produces a powerful toxin that damages the lining of the small intestine which may cause bloody diarrhea. According to the recall issued on the Healthy Canadians website, “some people infected with E. coli O157 do not get sick at all, though they can still spread the infection to others.” 

 

The Carnivora Products Recalled

 

 

E. coli O157: What You Need to Know

There are hundreds of strains of the E. coli bacteria and most are harmless and live in the intestines of both animals and humans. But according to the Mayo Clinic, the E. coli O157 strain, involved in this recall of raw pet food, is not harmless and can cause severe stomach cramps, pain or tenderness, bloody diarrhea and even nausea and vomiting in some people. Most healthy adults will recover on their own within a week to ten days with rest and plenty of hydration. But if diarrhea is persistent, severe or bloody, see your doctor. 

The Health Canada website also warns, “Pregnant women, those with weakened immune systems, young children and older adults are most at risk for developing serious complications (like a life-threatening form of kidney failure) and might need hospitalization.”

 

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately stop using any of the recalled products and contact the retailer where they purchased the products for a full refund or exchange.  Consumers may contact Carnivora Pet Food 888-665-0856, Monday – Friday from 8:30 am-4:30 pm CST or via email at: carnivorarecall@carnivora.ca.

Sources: The Dog Food Advisor, Carnivora Pet Food, Healthy Canadians and the Mayo Clinic.


© 2020. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

Think You Know the Symptoms of K9 Urinary Tract Infections? Think again!

“My dog is acting nuts,” I told the vet’s office lady over the phone.

“What do you mean?”

“She’s not behaving normal – just crazy,” I responded.

“What’s going on?” the lady asked in a tone that suggested I was the crazy one.

I know my dog . . .

If you have owned a dog for a while, you know their personality, their quirks, and their behaviors. I knew she wasn’t behaving normally (for her). I made an appointment for the next afternoon.

 

So, What Was the Crazy Behavior?

My 12-year-old pitbull, Lacey, doesn’t like to go out in the rain. She’s a big baby.

The weather was sleeting, and it was cold. Lacey wandered through the doggy door to the outside, down the steps and laid down. She wouldn’t come back in. I’d call her and she seemed confused. She’d start to walk to the deck stairs, pace back and forth, then turn around and lay back down.

She was now cold and completely soaked.

I hustled outside and brought her indoors. I wondered if she was getting dementia. Later, I found her standing with her head in the corner – again very weird.

Later that evening, she sat next to me on the couch and pressed her head into my chest rubbing up and down. I thought, “Aww, how sweet.” But then, as I ran my hand down her side,  I could feel it tightening like contractions. Instantly, I knew my dog was in pain.

 

Urinary Tract Infections: Common Symptoms

The typical UTI symptoms usually include:

  • blood in the urine
  • cloudy urine
  • strong urine odor
  • trying to pee, but not able to get much out
  • dribbling urine in the house – can’t control it
  • excessive licking of the genital area
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • fever
  • nausea/vomiting
  • crying in pain while urinating
  • drinking more than usual

 

Know the Quirkier Symptoms

Symptoms including:

  • confusion
  • off-balance, dizzy, possible falling or tripping
  • agitation
  • shaking/chills
  • unusual behavior
  • walking with an arched back
  • sleeping in unusual postures

 

How Does a UTI Get Diagnosed?

First, you’ll need a clean urine sample; ask your vet for a collection container.

Take the sample to your vet to run a:

  • urinalysis; or
  • urine culture (this takes a couple of days).

This will tell the veterinarian what kind of bacteria or fungi your dog may have contracted, and which antibiotic to use (should you choose that route). You want to eradicate the infection the first time because having to use additional rounds of antibiotics can cause antibiotic-resistant bacteria which you really don’t want.

(I prefer the urine culture because it determines the specific cause of the UTI infection, bacterial or fungal. The treatment can then be targeted for that particular cause.)

 

Do NOT Let a UTI Go Untreated!

If left untreated, a UTI can turn into a serious and possibly life-threatening problem (once it travels to the kidneys). At a minimum, get a urinalysis or culture to see what your dog is dealing with and then treat it with prescribed antibiotics or holistic alternatives.

 

Holistic Alternatives

Once you know whether you’re dealing with a bacterial or fungal UTI infection, get your canine on an appropriate treatment immediately.

If you decide to use holistic options, only use organic, pesticide-free herbs on an empty stomach.

Couch Grass

Effective herbs for addressing UTIs include:

  1. cranberry extract or powder;
  2. marshmallow root, and/or
  3. couch grass.

You could also use amino acid methionine. When used along with cranberry extract, it can be as effective as an antibiotic. Consult with a holistic vet versed in herbal treatments for proper dosing.

 

A Final Note

Whether you choose traditional or holistic treatments, the idea is to properly diagnose and treat your dog quickly.

I believe that holistic treatments and traditional treatments can work harmoniously. I use holistic treatment options on a regular basis with my dogs. But at times, you may opt for a traditional approach with antibiotics.

If your vet doesn’t offer holistic veterinarian services, search online for a holistic veterinarian near you. You can use the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA) to search.

Whether you have access to a traditional or holistic vet, you must make the best decision for your dog.

No judgment here.

 


Sources:

Top Remedies for UTI in Dogs

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) in Dogs & Puppies

Lower Urinary Tract Problems and Infections in Dogs

Herbs for Your Pet’s Urinary Tract Health

 

Image Credits (In Order of Appearance)

Photo by Pamela Morrison

Photo by Igor Ferreira from Pexels

Image by fernando zhiminaicela from Pixabay

Image by Free-Images.com

Photo by Pamela Morrison

 


Meet our Guest Blogger

Pamela Morrison is a professional copywriter for the pet industry including marketers, pet product and service providers, veterinarians and holistic pet practitioners. She does home visits for a local rescue when she can and has been a dog foster mom. She lives in western Michigan with her husband and two dogs, Lacey and Zadie. Pam enjoys walking her dogs, reading, and drinking lots of coffee!

Click here to learn more about Pamela on her LinkedIn page.

 


 

Dog CPR: How to Do It Safely

The Steps for Safely Performing CPR on Your Dog

Image by Luisella Planeta Leoni from Pixabay

 

No one likes to expect the unexpected.

But when you’re faced with a life-threatening emergency requiring K9 CPR, proper preparation may be all that stands between life and death for that dog.

 

 

Dog CPR Involves Artificial Resuscitation

Image by Pet Safety Crusader


Click here to learn more at the Your Pet’s Au Pair blog: “How to Safely Perform CPR on Your Dog.”


LEARN Basic First Aid and CPR from the comfort of your couch!

Sign up for the upcoming Virtual First Aid and CPR class hosted by The Pet Safety Crusader!

(Register before February 14th for the February 22nd class!)

Dog & Cat First Aid & CPR

Dog and Cat First Aid & CPR by The Pet Safety Crusader

Guest Blog: 11 Christmas Risks for Dogs

Protect Your Dog from These Christmas Risks

Christmas is a time to have fun, indulge and celebrate!
Since our pets are such an important part of our family, it’s natural to
include them in the holiday celebration as well!

 

But this festive season also presents many hidden dangers to our canine and feline friends, from toxic food to hazardous seasonal plants and even decorations!

To ensure your beloved pet remains safe this holiday season, keep reading about the unusual risks to our pets this festive season.

 

11 Christmas Risks for Dogs

Batteries

Batteries Pose Risks to Pets

Did you know that more dogs ingest batteries during Christmas than at any other time of the year?

Just like with your kids, apply the same security measures for your dogs. It is vital to cover all batteries and wires so that your dog cannot access them. Batteries can cause burns in the mouth and esophagus leading to other severe internal injuries.

Enjoy a safe Christmas with your dogs by keeping all new and old batteries out of reach of your pets.

 

Live Christmas Trees

Live Christmas Trees Pose Risks To Pets

 

For some people, Christmas is incomplete without a Christmas tree. But pine needles (real and fake) are dangerous if your dog chews or swallows them! They can cause mouth injuries and swelling; if ingested, they can cause vomiting and diarrhea. 

Also, stagnant water from live trees can cause diarrhea or nausea in your dog.

Whether you use a real or artificial tree, create a perimeter to prevent your dog from swallowing any of the tree’s needles (and decorations!).

Also, ensure that the tree is securely stable so it won’t fall over and cause injuries to your dog, other pets or even children. 

 

Salt Dough Ornaments

Salt Dough Xmas Ornaments are a Risk to Pets

 

These commonly used holiday ornaments are made out of baked dough and contain flour, salt, and water. This mixture can be fatal for our dogs, especially small puppies

But unfortunately, these ornaments can invite a pet’s curiosity thanks to their curious shape, colors and smells. But if ingested, the results can be unpleasant and worse for our pets.

 

Candles

Lit Candles Pose Risks to Pets

Candles can be a great way to bring Christmas spirit into our homes. But as a pet parent, avoid leaving burning candles unattended – or within reach – of your pets.

Dogs (and cats) are naturally curious about new smells and tastes. A curious pet could easily get burned; or worse, cause a fire if a burning candle is knocked over.

Consider using no-flame candles instead. If you decide to light candles, be sure to place them on secure tabletops and remember to extinguish them before leaving the room.

 

Silica Gel

Silica Gel Poses Risks to Pets

 

Silica gel in small packets is often found in the packaging of new handbags, shoes or electrical equipment. Although it has low toxicity, it can cause blockages in your dog’s gut if they eat it.

Always be careful when opening Christmas presents with silica gel packets and securely dispose of them immediately.

 

 

Potpourri

When eaten, potpourri can cause severe gastrointestinal problems in dogs. These issues might last for several days, Keep Potpourri away from Petseven after passing through the gut.

Proactively protect your dog by keeping all potpourri securely out of reach. 

 

Chocolate

Chocolate can cause severe gastrointestinal problems in dogs. These issues might last for several days, even after passing through the gut.

To protect your dog, you should keep them out of reach.

 

Blue Cheese Poses Risks to Dogs

Blue Cheese

Despite the popularity of blue cheese, it does contain roquefortine C, a substance which dogs are susceptible to. As with all of the Christmas foods around, be sure to keep blue cheese away from your dog.

 

 

Cooked Bones

While you may think that cooked bones are a safe treat to give to your dog to enjoy, nothing could be farther from the truth!

Cooked bones are very brittle and can easily break into tiny, sharp pieces when chewed. These tiny pieces can cause irreparable harm to your dog’s gastrointestinal tract including blockages and piercing of the intestines. Keep all cooked bones away from your dog and make sure they are securely disposed of where your dog cannot get to them. 

 

Mince Pies Pose Risks to Pets

Mince Pies & Christmas Puddings

Mince pies and Christmas puddings contain toxic grapes, currants, raisins and sultanas and should be kept away from dogs and other pets. 

 

 

Alcoholic Drinks Pose Risks to Pets

Alcohol

Alcohol can cause diarrhea, vomiting, tremors, coma and even death in dogs.

Keep any and all alcohol beverages (including beer) out of reach of all pets and children for a safe holiday celebration! 

 

 


Wishing you, your family and four-legged best friends a safe and Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

 


Image Credits (In Order Shown):

Image by Pexels.com

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay 

Image by Maciej Szewczyk from Pixabay 

Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay 

Image by Ann San from Pixabay 

Image by Deb Douglass from Pixabay 

Image by Don Johnoghue from Pixabay

Image by darianstibbe from Pixabay

Image by Михаил Прокопенко from Pixabay

 

Guest Blog: Ideas for Local Animal Shelters During the Holidays

Help Animal Shelters During Christmas

It’s December and the Season for Giving!

It’s also a wonderful time to think about our local animal shelters. 

 

For most of us, the holidays come with colder weather. As I write this, here in Wisconsin, it’s only 6 degrees! Sadly, this time of year also sees an increased number of dogs and cats in need of shelter. Since shelters usually operate from donations, whatever you can give goes a long way in helping homeless pets.

 

Ideas for Giving to Your Local Shelter

Give Love and Attention to Shelter Pets

Your Time – All dogs and cats need attention, cuddle time and exercise. Especially during the holidays, shelters and rescues are always looking for extra volunteers to help keep the animals feeling loved and well-cared for.

Food – Both canines and felines eat at least twice a day. That is a lot of food for a shelter! Depending on age and diet needs, they typically will accept a variety of quality foods both dry and wet along with treats. Other foods a shelter can typically use include peanut butter (please make sure it’s xylitol-free), fresh veggies and fruits, canned baby food and tuna. Call your local shelter first to see what they are currently accepting.

Spare Blankets, Pillows and Towels – Shelters can always use these items for their crates and bedding. They also need rags, newspapers and kitty litter.

Toys – Shelters can always use toys to help the dogs (and cats) stay happy, mentally stimulated and active. Kong toys, balls or puzzles are great, so are gently used stuffed animals! Do you have toys that your dog or cat refuses to play with? Donate them!Donate Crates and Carriers to Local Shelters

Crates and Carriers – Both dogs and cats love a secure den. Are you no longer using your dog crate or cat carrier? Donate it!  You can help a shelter animal feel safer, especially in a busy shelter where things may seem scary and overwhelming.

Other items you could give include:

  • Food and water bowls;
  • Grooming supplies; and
  • Office items.

Obviously, you can always donate money to a shelter; but there are other ways to help if you don’t have the extra money (especially at this time of year)! Extra items or those going unused at home could be very useful at a shelter. Again, call a shelter first to see what items they need and will accept.


I am in high hopes that this blog helps our animal shelters receive extra donations during this Season of Giving. Also, keep your local shelters in mind, not just over the holidays, but throughout the coming year!


A big thank you to all our animal shelters and may all the pets find forever homes!

 

Dog Bless~ 

 

 

 

Not sure where to find YOUR local shelters?

Just pull out your smartphone and google “animal shelters near me!” 

 

 


My Secret Dog BlogMeet our Guest Blogger

Holli Burch is a blogger at The Dog Connection focusing on Connecting Humans and Dogs; Mind, Body and Soul. She likes to focus everyday on giving back and uplifting dog lovers. You can follow Holli on Facebook.


 

Is It Always Bad When A Dog Growls?

Is It Always Bad When a Dog Growls?

Dogs communicate in a variety of ways including

well-established body language, barks and even growls. 

But is it always a bad thing when your dog growls?

 

Click here to learn more at Your Pet AuPair‘s blog post: https://tinyurl.com/y2lyrh7a.

And please share with a fellow dog owner!

If You Own a Dog, Are You Aware of this Suffocation Risk?

Image by Foto-Rabe from Pixabay

 

I thought I had heard it all when it comes to the trouble our dogs (and even cats) can get into. Well, I stand corrected, because recently I learned about a common danger that exists at this very moment in almost every household (probably including yours)!

I’m talking about empty snack bags that contain:

  • Chips
  • Pretzels
  • Crackers
  • Popcorn
  • Jerky
  • Cookies and MORE!

Click here to learn more at the Ken Caryl Pet Spa’s blog with this life-saving post: Yes, Your Nosy Dog Can Suffocate in an Empty Chip Bag!

And PLEASE, share it with a friend to protect other curious dogs, cats and pets!

Guest Blog: 5 Reasons You Need Your Pet More

Pet parents know that having a pet brings an incredible amount of happiness into their life. But caring for your doggo can also have an invaluable impact on your health and well-being. While properly caring for your pet is a big responsibility, you will also enjoy improvements in your physical health, emotional health, and even your social life! It may make you feel like you need your pet more than they need you!

Good for Your Heart and Overall Health

According to a study by Sweden’s Uppsala University, adopting a dog can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease, especially in people who live alone. Owning a pet has even shown to increase life expectancy. Whether you’re taking your pup on a daily walk around the block, taking him on a hike or to the dog beach, you are also taking care of your heart and increasing your physical activity. And hey, pets are great for your “emotional heart” as well!

Reduces Stress

Stress can have significant effects on your mental health and sense of well-being. It can make everything seem much more dire than it really is and leave you at an increased risk for things like depression and anxiety. Stress is often hard to get rid of, but it turns out that pets can help! According to the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, a study showed that owning a pet can actually help diminish symptoms of stress on a long-term basis.

Better Sleep

Sleep is important to both physical and mental health, and it can be particularly difficult to achieve quality sleep when you’re not in the right headspace. Did you know that sleeping with your pet could help? Many people find that they feel more comforted and secure with their pet in the room than they do without them. If you have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, consider sharing some space with your pet to see if it helps. While it doesn’t prove effective for everyone, especially if you have a rambunctious pup, you may be surprised at how much your pet’s presence can help.

 

Improved Social Life

Looking to jump-start your social life? Get a dog. Walking your dog can help you connect with neighbors and meet new people. Many conversations – and friendships – begin at the dog park. While this, at first glance, may not seem crucial to your health, it is believed that people with more social connections often live longer. You can actually help reinforce your physical health as well as your social circle simply by taking good care of your furry friend and meeting people along the way.

 

Unconditional Love

A price cannot be put on the unconditional love your pet gives you. We all have to cope with stress and the unexpected twists and turns of life. However, the one thing you can always rely on is the love of a pet. Your dog will always be there waiting for you at the front door with an open heart and a wagging tail. That’s a great way to end the day.

Our pets need us to help take care of their physical health, but it turns out that they might give us more than we could ever hope to give them. Having a pet is great for your mental and physical health!

 

Sources: The Benefits of Sleeping With Your Pet and aha Journals.

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Stephanie James is a dog-walker by day and freelance writer by night, who covers a variety of topics, including holistic health for both pets and owners. To read more work by Stephanie, connect with her on Twitter @sjaywrites13.


 

5 Reasons You Need Your Pet More than They Need You

 

Anyone who is a pet parent knows that having a pet brings an incredible amount of happiness into your life. But caring for your doggo can also have an invaluable impact on your health and wellbeing. While properly caring for your pet is a big responsibility, you may find the improvements in your physical health, emotional health, and even your social life has you feeling like you need your pet more than they need you.

Good for Your Heart and Overall Health

According to a study by Sweden’s Uppsala University, adopting a dog can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease, especially in people who live alone. And owning a pet has even shown to increase life expectancy. Whether you’re taking your pup on a daily walk around the block or taking him on a hike or to the dog beach, you are also taking care of your heart, and increasing your physical activity. And hey, pets are good for your “emotional heart” as well!

Reduces Stress

Stress can have significant effects on your mental health and sense of well-being. It can make everything seem much more dire than it really is and leave you at an increased risk for things like depression and anxiety. Stress is often hard to get rid of, but it turns out that pets can help! According to the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, a study showed that owning a pet can actually help diminish symptoms of stress on a long-term basis.

Better Sleep

Sleep is important to both physical and mental health, and it can be particularly difficult to achieve quality sleep when you’re not in the right headspace. Did you know that sleeping with your pet could help? Many people find that they feel more comforted and secure with their pet in room than they do without them. If you have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, consider sharing some space with your pet to see if it helps. While it doesn’t prove effective for everyone, especially if you have a particularly rambunctious pup, you may be surprised at how much their pet’s presence can help.

Improved Social Life

Looking to jump start your social life? Get a dog. Walking your dog can help you connect with neighbors and meet new people. Many conversations – and friendships – begin at the dog park. While this, at first glance, may not seem crucial to your health, it is believed that people with more social connections often live longer. You can actually help reinforce your physical health as well as your social circle simply by taking good care of your furry friend and meeting people along the way.

 

Unconditional Love

A price cannot be put on the unconditional love your pet gives you. We all have to cope with stress and the unexpected twists and turns of life. However, the one thing you can always rely on is the love of a pet. Your dog will always be there waiting for you at the front door with an open heart and a wagging tail. That’s a great way to end the day.

Our pets need us to help take care of their physical health, but it turns out that they might give us more than we could ever hope to give them. Having a pet is great for your mental and physical health!

 

Sources: The Benefits of Sleeping With Your Pet and aha Journals

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

 

Stephanie James is a dog-walker by day and freelance writer by night, who covers a variety of topics, including holistic health for both pets and owners. To read more work by Stephanie, connect with her on Twitter @sjaywrites13.


 

Guest Blog: Is Your Puppy Too Excited Around Other Dogs?

Dogs are naturally social creatures that enjoy attention. As a matter of fact, nothing more can make them go gaga than chancing upon their own kind, regardless of breed. That should not come as a total surprise because dogs came from a long line of ancestors who had thrived living in packs.

Photo by Eva Blue on Unsplash

 

Why You Need to Teach Your Puppy to be Calm

Unfortunately, some puppies and even adult dogs find it hard to contain their excitement and go completely overboard when around other canines. A dog may bark, whine or lunge at other dogs when they are giddy. These actions may come from a friendly standpoint, but the other dog might perceive it as a threat, especially if their personal space is being violated.

If your puppy or adult dog acts this way, he might be in danger of being attacked by another dog. Also, if this hyperactive behavior is ignored, it may progress into aggressiveness. This tendency is more evident in dogs that show signs of fear and anxiety. But, addressing the issue should be done in the right manner. Yelling will not help and will only impose a sense of negativity to the dogs involved. Also, if you pull your leashed dog close to you when he is about to interact with another dog, this can create unwanted tension. If you reprimand your dog for acting this way, it will lead him to think negatively about associating with other dogs, fueling unwanted and negative behaviors.

 

Is Your Dog Excited or Stressed?

Did you know that dogs often look the same way when they are excited or stressed? This can be a shocker for most pet parents to realize what they once viewed as a happy behavior is actually a cry for help.

It is not bad for dogs to get excited, but there are key differences between:

  • Stressed and anxious energy; and
  • Happy and enthusiastic canine energy.

A dog’s energy depends on their mental state at the time. As owners, we often observe their physical behavior without understanding the true energy behind it. Dogs are “cute” when they are over-excited or over-stimulated, but this attitude is not ideal for your dog. Also, when we match this type of excited energy from our dogs, they respond with more excitement, heightening their already intensified feelings which can lead to unwanted behavior.

To identify whether your dog is exhibiting signs of anxiety or excitement, take note of how he behaves when he is in a relaxed state. You can see how comfortable a dog is based on his posture and behavior. It can also be characterized by a soft gaze with squinted or rounded eyes and ears slightly erect and placed forward (does not apply to dogs with floppy ears). When you talk to him, he acknowledges you by moving his ear backward and relaxing his mouth.

Photo by Andrew Pons on Unsplash

 

Other Reasons Your K9 is Overactive Around Other Dogs

  • Aside from anxiety, your dog might be displaying fear. So when he acts in a reactive manner, other dogs and their owners may walk away in avoidance or fear, which is your dog’s intention if he is fearful.
  • Another reason is frustration. Many dogs feel restrained due to the leash wrapped around their neck that holds them back whenever they are excited to see other dogs. You also see this type of dog behavior with closed fences and gates.

Defining Your Role as a Canine Parent

Your dog might be too overeager upon seeing other dogs. Acknowledging your dog’s need to be with other dogs is essential. But, he has to learn to approach potential friends – and even old friends – with confidence and calmness. To protect your furbaby and ensure that he is capable of handling different social situations, you need to identify the root cause of this excitement. As mentioned earlier, some dogs act all gung-ho when seeing other dogs to mask their anxiousness or fear. If this is the case with your dog, you will need to address potential issues with anxiety, fear or frustration when training your dog to be calm.

Prevention is better than cure, many would say. The easiest method to prevent your dog from acting out when they see another dog is to go the other way. But do not wait until your dog gets all riled up.  Properly socializing your dog as soon as possible will also help avoid unwanted, unsocial and overexcited behaviors.

The following methods below can help your dog learn:

  1. To channel their extra energy into something positive; and
  2. Help them learn how to stay calm and collected when hanging out with his peers.

 

Two Ways to Calm Your Puppy Down

During training, use a well-fitted harness to protect your puppy’s neck if he lunges forward upon seeing another dog. You might also want to ask a friend to help out and lend you his or her emotionally-stable and mature dog that will not overreact to your puppy’s over-eagerness or unbridled playfulness. Always reward your puppy’s good behavior with his favorite treat!

Method #1: Calm to Me

  • Enlist the help of a friend with a calm dog. Meet them in a park or have them join you and your leashed puppy for a walk. Keep all training short and fun
  • Once you see your friend and their dog, ask them to stop at a distance where your dog is still comfortable and not becoming overexcited. Tell your dog to sit or stay.
  • Ask the other dog to slowly approach. As soon as you notice your dog starting to go into a frenzy (timing is very important), ask your friend and their dog to stop, turn around, and walk away.
  • Wait until your dog is calm once again and repeat the process. As long as your dog remains calm and remains in the sit and stay position, the other dog can continue to move toward him. But the moment he begins barking, lunging or getting aggressive, your friend and their dog should stop, turn around and walk away.
  • Repeat the process for a few days until your dog fully grasps the concept and use this process to introduce to him other dogs.

Method #2: Sit and Stay

  • Have your friend bring their calm dog over to your home. Before the dog and his owner come, place your dog on a leash.
  • Once the new dog enters your premises, command your dog to sit or stay. Tug the leash gently to the side if necessary to get your dog’s attention (but refrain from pulling back).
  • If your dog maintains a composed demeanor and obeys your orders, hand him a treat. Repeat several times with different dogs for several weeks until your dog automatically calms down without any command when seeing a dog.
  • Once your dog has learned how to act properly when there is another dog, have him socialize with all kinds of other dogs.

Photo by MaggieLovesOrbit On Insta on Unsplash

 

Dogs are naturally sociable and reprimanding or pulling them back when they get excited will not resolve the underlying issue. Use the tips and methods detailed above to train your dog to be more social and less reactive with anxiety, over-excitement or even fear. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out for expert help! A dog trainer or behaviorist can help identify behavioral issues and design an effective plan of action to create a happy, confident and social dog!

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Brian Larsen is the Co-Founder and CEO of RejuvaPet, LLC — the creator of RestoraPet and RestoraPet Hemp. He spent nearly 10 years developing these products to rehabilitate and protect pets at the cellular level, for a vastly improved quality of life.

 


 

Is it Safe to Handle Your Pet’s Raw Food?

As the debate rages on about whether a raw diet* is good or not for our pets, below is an interesting study about the potential risk of humans getting sick or infected from handling their pet’s raw food. The study included over 16K pet households in 81 countries. The research is published in the BMJ journal Veterinary Record.

(*Raw food includes any meat, internal organs, bones and cartilage fed uncooked to pets.)

(Did you know that more than 60% of pet owners in the Netherlands feed raw?)

 


It’s safe to feed raw food to pets, finds new study.


 

Guest Blog: Shave Your Dog! Truth or Myth?

 

When a man decides not to shave his face – it’s usually for an admirable reason, like No-Shave November (designed to raise cancer awareness throughout the month). Sometimes it’s just an excuse to get out of shaving, but – more often than not – there’s a purpose behind that decision!

But, when a groomer decides not to shave a dog’s coat, it’s rarely “just because.” It’s in the dog’s best interest for multiple reasons.

 

A Dog’s Coat is Suited for Heat or Cold

Often, pet parents mistakenly assign human conditions to their pets. For example, thinking their Husky, Chow or Samoyed gets too hot and should be shaved. The truth is their coats serve as natural heating and cooling mechanisms.

 

“These breeds have a double-layered coat that protects the

from the snow and cold, and prevents sunburn in hot months,”

says Humberto Z., who has been a groomer since 2008.

 

Shaving double-coated dogs can also cause unwanted medical conditions, like alopecia, which prevents the coat from growing back properly. Sam, an experienced pet stylist, explains, “I try to educate pet parents who request a shave on a double-coated dog on why it is harmful to do so.”

 

Does Shaving Stop K9 Shedding?

People tend to also believe that shaving will stop shedding – fake news! Fur returns, and with it comes inevitable furballs rolling across the floor like tumbleweeds. “Double-coated dogs shed a lot during hotter months because they’re letting their undercoat out <blowing coat>,” further advises Humberto. “When you do a de-shedding brush out it’s fine because you’re taking only the undercoat out and leaving what is called the guard coat – a layer to prevent sunburn.”

Brittany Z, who has been grooming professionally since 2005, offers alternatives to shave requests. “I would first offer a really good bath with de-shedding shampoo, blow out and a de-shedding brush out with the best tool for that dog’s coat. Then to reduce shedding, I recommend a good brush out every 2 weeks and a bath every 4 weeks.”

 

Fur-Bearing vs Hair-Bearing Canines

Fur-bearing dogs have different needs than hair-bearing dogs; talk with your groomer about what’s best for your pup. Hair-bearing dogs like Poodles, Shih Tzus and Yorkies, need haircuts regularly and can typically be shaved if needed. But fur-bearing, double-coated dogs, such as Alaskan Malamutes, Labs and Golden Retrievers have fur that grows to a particular length and should NOT be shaved.*  You can find a complete list of breeds and coat types at www.akc.org.

Sometimes, when a dog has gone too long without proper grooming and develops tightly packed matted fur against their skin, a shave is necessary. These mats are painful – their skin is being pulled by the tightening fur, and skin diseases can develop if left untreated. Most of these shaves should be performed with the dog under sedation with vet supervision, followed by a skin/coat care regimen to protect the pup while their fur grows back, and a regular grooming schedule to prevent a reoccurrence.

With a bit of coat education, you can keep your pup’s coat and skin healthy, while the groomer makes them look grrrr-eat!

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Renee Ventrice is the VP of Marketing for Woofie’s LLC, proud mom of Beemer, a 13-year-old Parsons Russell Terrier and human mom to her 20-year-old son Gino.

Woofie’s was established in 2004 and is an award-winning pet care company offering pet sitting, dog walking and mobile pet spa services as well as franchising opportunities. Learn more about Woofie’s at www.woofies.com.

 


 

* Source: http://www.GroomersGallery.com

Photo Credits: Ellen Zangla Photography

RECALL: Texas Tripe Raw Pet Food

 

The USDA (US Food and Drug Administration) issues a recall alert on August 14th regarding 35 frozen lots of Texas Tripe Raw Pet Food (manufactured by Texas Tripe Inc).

The recall was issued after samples tested positive for Salmonella and/or Listeria monocytogenes. Testing was done by the Office of the Texas State Chemist (OTSC). Of the 23 samples tested,  16 were positive.

The recalled products were sold frozen in 20- and 40-pound cases containing multiple plastic pouches in 23 product varieties. NOTE: There are no unique identifications numbers on the individual chubs (plastic pouches) to identify them as the recalled products. Lot codes are only printed on the outside of the cases.

Here is the list of all the recalled products and lot numbers:

(Courtesy: The Dog Advisor)

The States Included in the Recall

The recalled products were sold directly to consumers (online and over the phone) in the following states:

Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

 

ALSO … A Special Note

The products below were also tested and showed positive for Salmonella and/or Listeria monocytogenes but have NOT been recalled.

  • Texas Tripe Chicken Blend: Lot 19196-6
  • Texas Tripe Pork Blend: Lot 19190-09
  • Texas Tripe Beef Blend: Lot 19191-05

Pet treats and food contaminated with Salmonella and/or Listeria monocytogenes pose a public health concern because they can affect both the health of animals and humans. Refrigeration or even freezing does not kill the bacteria.

 

What You Should Know About Salmonella

Salmonella poses a risk to animals ingesting the affected product (including dogs and cats) and humans. Pets infected with salmonella may display symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Lethargy and shock;
  • Diarrhea (which may last up to 3-4 weeks or longer);
  • Vomiting;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Mucus and/or blood in the stool.

People infected with salmonella can also have:

  • Diarrhea;
  • Fever; and
  • Abdominal cramps.

For some people, their diarrhea may be severe enough to require hospitalization.

 

What You Should Know About Listeria Monocytogenes

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans (if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product). Pets infected with listeria may display symptoms including:

  • Mild to severe diarrhea;
  • Anorexia;
  • Fever;
  • Nervous, muscular and respiratory system issues;
  • Abortion;
  • Depression; and
  • Shock and even death.

Infected animals can also serve as sources of infection to other household animals and humans.

 

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately stop feeding any of the recalled products and discard them in a secure container where stray animals or wildlife cannot access them.

Consumers should also:

  • Clean their refrigerator/freezers where the product was stored.
  • Thoroughly wash their hands after handling any recalled products.
  • Clean and disinfect any:
    • Utensils;
    • Bowls;
    • Surfaces including floors; and
    • Pet bedding and toys.

 

Sources: The Dog Food Advisor and the FDA.

 

© 2019. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

YOU Can Make a Difference on Clear the Shelters Day!

 

Now in its fifth year, Clear the Shelters is fast-approaching this Saturday, August 17th! Since the campaign started in 2015, more than a quarter of a million homeless dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs and even birds have found their “fur-ever” homes!

 

Want to adopt your new best friend this year?

Find a Clear the Shelters participating

partner (by zip code) by clicking here.

 

 

Have a shelter or rescue organization and want to participate in this year’s Clear the Shelters campaign?

Click here to register now!

 

For questions or more ways you can help the 2019 Clear the Shelters event, contact your local participating shelter or rescue using this map!

Pitbull image by Beverly Lussier from Pixabay.

 

 

Guest Blog: Should You Feed Your Dog a Raw Diet?

With the recent flurry of recalls and news stories about potential links of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) to grain-free pet foods, more pet owners are taking another look at feeding their pets a raw meat diet. Our guest blogger, Jade Bossenbroek, Founder of 4 Raw Pets Raw Feeding, dissects this important subject below.


Why Feed Raw?

Some people might argue that our domestic cats and dogs with all the years of domesticating, breeding and being fed processed foods like kibble, they have adapted to live, survive and thrive on a more – or even complete – plant-based diet. But is this really true?

 

Carnivores vs Herbivores

Carnivore” literally means “meat-eater” in Latin. “True” carnivores (called obligate carnivores), are meat-eaters whose survival depends and thrives on nutrients found in animal flesh because they lack the necessary physiology required to digest a large amount of plant material.  In other words, true carnivores must eat meat to survive. Cats, dogs and even ferrets are obligate carnivores. Their bodies are anatomically adapted to eating meat in the following ways:

  • Their teeth are sharp and pointy, meant for holding, tearing and crushing, all of which are needed for a meat-based diet.
  • Carnivores have a very short digestive tract, so food passes through fast and as such the food has got to be easily absorbed to be useful.
  • They do not have the enzymes to break down carbohydrates found in plant-based products.
  • They produce enzymes specifically for breaking down meat in their stomach.
  • The saliva found in their mouths is better suited to prevent cavities, there are no digestive enzymes present in their saliva, it is purely designed to get the food down into the stomach where the digestive process can start.

For the carnivore, meat protein is necessary for healthy muscles and organs. Meat also contains important vitamins, minerals and amino acids that help the body function in every way; including metabolism, brain function and healing. In contrast, feeding high carbohydrate diets (like kibble and other processed foods) can lead to many health issues for the carnivore such as allergies, gum disease, tooth decay and much more.

It is said that all the amino acids needed to function can be found in meat in the right levels; one of which is taurine, an ingredient only found in muscle and organ meat (large amounts of taurine can be found in the brain, retina and heart). This amino acid cannot be found in – or replaced by – plant-based protein. Cats and also foxes need a higher concentration of taurine compared to dogs. Without it, they can suffer from:

  • Blindness;
  • Heart problems; and
  • Even death.

Meat also provides saturated fatty acids in usable forms (unlike many plant-based oils). Fatty acids are important for proper:

  • Hormone production
  • Energy
  • Cell membrane formation
  • Protection of vital organs

Saturated fatty acids in animal-based proteins range around 80-90%, whereas plant-based proteins only contain around 10-20%.

 

(To learn more, read Dogs: The Omnivore-Carnivore Question by Dr. Jeannie Thomason & Dr. Kim Bloomer)

 

On the other hand, an herbivore is an animal who is well-adapted to primarily beating plant material (anatomically and physiologically). In contrast to the carnivore, herbivores:

  • Have teeth that are flat with a jaw that moves from side to side to breakdown plant material.
  • Produce enzymes (starting in their mouths) to break down plant-based products; and
  • Have a longer digestive tract so plant-based material has time to pass through and be adequately absorbed.

 

The DNA Link

Whether you have Chihuahua or a German Shepard, domestic dogs and wolves share roughly 99.9% of their DNA and because of this, wolves and dogs also share a lot in common anatomically. No matter how domesticated your dog may be, it still has the same short digestive tract, sharp teeth and the same enzymes for breaking down meat as his ancestors over 10,000 years ago.

Wolves are strict meat-eaters, but they will sometimes supplement their diet with greens and berries. This mostly occurs when there’s a food shortage or when they feel under the weather or lacking something. Think of your dog eating grass and then throwing up. But some occasional plant materials does not automatically make them an omnivore as some suggest.

 

Is Your Pet REALLY Fine on a Kibble Diet?

Ok, you might be able to survive on McDonald’s every day, but would you really be healthy?

Sadly, it’s all too common for our pets to die from cancer or kidney failure today. These illnesses that weren’t all that common just 30 years ago are now claiming pet lives at an alarming rate. Just like with us humans, nutrition plays a critical part in the overall health and well-being of our pets.

Yes, of course not everything can be blamed on diet alone. Genetics, the environment, stress levels and more all play an important role. But there’s unrefutable proof there’s a strong connection between health and overall nutrition.

Today’s commercial kibble contains a high ratio of carbohydrates. In order to maximize their profits, the pet food industry has been adding carbohydrates in the form of fruits, vegetables and grains into their products instead of meat. Both vets and/or the pet food industry do not want to potentially discredit their own industry, but basic common sense and research really can unearth the deceitful marketing tactics and indiscretion of the industry.

Humans (who are omnivores – beings who can eat and survive on both plants and meat) identify fruits, vegetables and grains as “whole foods” with valuable vitamins and minerals. But for our carnivorous pets, they can’t digest these “whole food” carbohydrates fast enough to utilise most of the nutrients.

Many carbohydrates we consider healthy such as peas, carrots and rice (which all turn into sugars) are actually pretty high on the glycemic index (the measurement of sugar in the blood) for dogs, cats and ferrets. Some of these same carbohydrates are linked to serious heart conditions and even cancers in our pets. Besides running the risk of developing diabetes, high sugar content also affects hyperactivity and is often converted into fat leading to obesity, a current epidemic among household pets. A weight management diet isn’t going to help, whilst these formulas may drop the fat content, the content of fibre and grain is increased more, which can worsen the condition.

 

Kibble: The Additives

Since the nutritional value of the raw ingredients has been depleted during the intense manufacturing (cooking) process, the pet food industry then adds artificial vitamins and minerals to mimic a balanced diet. Unfortunately, the ratio of vitamins and minerals added to kibble – and other commercially produced pet foods – is generalised so it covers a wide range of pets. The numbers posted in the analysis section only indicate maximum and minimum numbers and are not exact (think of a recent Hills Science Food recall, where high levels of vitamin D were found).

Since these added vitamins and minerals are not customized to your individual pet (some pets may absorb more nutrients than others), for some animals, there can be too much (for instance) calcium or magnesium which can result in painful crystals.

Then last but not least, in addition to the above, artificial food colouring and flavouring is often added to make it more appealing and palatable to the consumer (for marketing purposes). Sadly, many of these artificial colour and flavour additives have the potential for undesirable and high-risk health issues for our pets as well.

 

Kibble: The Lack of Moisture

Another hidden problem in kibble is the lack of necessary moisture which begins to tax our pet’s kidneys and can result in eventual kidney failure. Dry kibble typically contains only 7%-10% moisture (whereas meat contains 70% and more) in moisture. Vets already recognise that hydration is important, so why are they recommending dry kibble diets when they contain so little moisture?

The lack of critical moisture eventually results in many common illnesses such as urinary tract infections and chronic kidney failure, especially in cats.

 

The Proof is in the Poo

Meat protein sources are highly bioavailable at 90-95% (an ingredient’s potential to be absorbed); whereas plant-based proteins are only around 70% bioavailable. This is why when comparing pets on a raw meat diet with those on a kibble diet, those on kibble have large, smelly poos because they are not completely digesting what they are eating and therefore producing more (smelly) waste.

 

The Final Word

In short, despite human views and lifestyle choices, obligate carnivores like dogs, cats and ferrets cannot thrive on diets of grains and vegetables. As a human, you might choose a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, but those lifestyles should not be imposed on your carnivorous companion.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jade Bossenbroek, Founder of 4 Raw Pets Raw Feeding, turned to raw feeding after struggling to find a commercial dog food that would work for all four of her dogs. Each of the dogs was struggling with some kind of issue including flaky, smelly skin, hot spots, food-related allergies, strong dog smells and bouts of vomiting and explosive diarrhea. (She also lost a few cats at a young age form kidney failure.)  After doing research on raw feeding, Jade finally took the plunge and her dogs have been transformed for the better because of it. To help other dog guardians, Jade started the 4 Raw Pets website as a free resource to share her extensive research and information on species-appropriate, raw meat diets.


 

RECALL: Bulk Pig Ears Recalled in 33 States

UPDATE: 

The CDC has expanded its investigation to 27 states regarding the outbreak of human Salmonella infections because of contaminated bulk pig ear dog treats.

According to the CDC website, as of July 16th, 93 people have been infected with one of 3 genetic strains of the salmonella bacteria found on the bulk pig ear dog treats (from 27 states) and twenty people have been hospitalized. The CDC labels these infections as “multidrug-resistant.” Since it takes 2-4 weeks for a person to become ill (with diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps) after handling a contaminated pig ear, not all illnesses may have yet been reported.

Those at the greatest risk include children under the age of 5, adults 65 years and older and those with weakened immune systems.

In addition, infected pets can carry and infect other animals and humans.

Source: Dog Food Advisor and CDC.gov.

 


 

Pet Supplies Plus has issued a recall to over 400 retail stores in 33 states for bulk pig ears (dog treats).

The recall only includes bulk pig ears stocked in open bins. Prepackaged branded pig ears are not included in this recall.

The recall was issued after testing by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development revealed the presence of Salmonella.

The States Included in the PSP Recall

Bulk Pig Ear Dog Treats are Being Recalled

The recall involves Pet Supplies Plus stores in:

Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

 

ALSO … An Investigation

On July 3rd, the FDA (together with the CDC) announced an investigation of contaminated pig ear dog treats that may be connected to human, drug-resistant Salmonella infections that have sickened 45 people in 13 states with 12 patients hospitalized from coming into contact with the contaminated pig ears.

The recall may or may not be related.

 

What You Should Know About Salmonella

Salmonella poses a risk to animals ingesting the affected product (including dogs and cats) and humans. Pets infected with salmonella may display symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Lethargy and shock;
  • Diarrhea (which may last up to 3-4 weeks or longer);
  • Vomiting;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Mucus and/or blood in the stool.

People infected with salmonella can also have:

  • Diarrhea;
  • Fever; and
  • Abdominal cramps.

For some people, their diarrhea may be severe enough to require hospitalization.

 

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately stop feeding any recalled pig ears and discard them in a secure container where stray animals or wildlife cannot access them. Consumers who have further questions are welcome to contact Pet Supplies Plus Neighbor Service team at 734-793-6564 between Monday and Friday 9 am to 4 pm ET (excluding holidays).

 

Pet Supplies Plus Recalls Pig Ears Dog Treats in 33 States

FDA Investigates Contaminated Pig Ear Pet Treats Connected to Human Salmonella Infections

Sources: The Dog Food Advisor and the FDA.

 

© 2019. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

RECALL: Thogersen Family Farm Pet Food

On April 4th, the Thogersen Family Farm (Stanwood WA) issued a voluntary recall for some of their frozen raw pet food.

The recall was issued after samples collected by the Washington State Department of Agriculture tested positive for listeria contamination.

There have been no reports of illness to date.

The Recall: The Affected Products

The products are frozen in 2-pound flattened, rectangular clear plastic packages.

Recalled varieties include frozen, raw:

  • Coarse ground rabbit
  • Coarse ground mallard duck
  • Ground llama
  • Ground pork

According to the FDA’s recall notice, Recalled product labels did not contain any lot identification, batch codes, or expiration dates. The front of the package contains one large white square label with the company name, product type and weight.”

These products were sold to individual customers or two retail establishments which have been notified of the recall.

 

What You Should Know About Listeria Monocytogenes

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans (if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product). Pets infected with listeria may display symptoms including:

  • Mild to severe diarrhea;
  • Anorexia;
  • Fever;
  • Nervous, muscular and respiratory system issues;
  • Abortion;
  • Depression; and
  • Shock and even death.

Infected animals can also serve as sources of infection to other household animals and humans.

 

What to do Next

Consumers should stop feeding any of the affected products and call the company with any questions at 360-929-9808.

 

Pet Age: Thogersen Family Farm Disputes FDA Recall

Sources: The Dog Food Advisor and the FDA.

 

 

© 2019. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

RECALL: Nestlé Purina PetCare: Muse Wet Cat Food

While Cold Noses News typically focuses on all things canine, we do have a huge soft spot for our felines, especially when it comes to protecting their life and health.

After complaints from cat owners, Nestlé Purina PetCare Company has voluntarily recalled limited amounts of their Muse wet cat food.

The recall was issued after cat owners found pieces of rubber in the cat food. These pieces of rubber were translucent yellow with a blue backing and could pose a potential choking hazard.Purina's Muse Natural Chicken Recipe Wet Cat Food has been recalled

The recall only impacts Muse wet cat food, Natural ChickenRecipe in Gravy, in 3-ounce cans.

There have been no reports of injury or illness to date.

 

The Recall: The Affected Lots

UPC Codes Best by date Lot identification number
38100 17199
(single three-ounce can)
4/30/2020
4/30/2020
8094116209
8094116210
38100 17780
(from Muse 6-can variety pack)
4/30/2020 8094179001

These products were distributed nationwide at pet specialty and e-commerce retailers.

Purina Muse Wet Cat Food recalled Purina Muse Wet Cat Food Recall

 

What to do Next

Consumers should throw away any of the recalled product and reach out to the Company for assistance at 800-982-3885.

 

Sources: The Truth about Pet Food and the FDA.

 


© 2019. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

RECALL: Darwin’s Natural Dog Food (What You Need to Know)

Yesterday, on March 26th, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning to dog owners to avoid feeding 3 separate lots of Darwin’s Natural Raw Dog Food.

(NOTE: All 3 lots were manufactured in October/November of 2018.)

After a consumer complaint, the FDA collected and tested samples from 3 lots and all tested positive for salmonella.

Darwin's Pet Food

These frozen dog food products are manufactured by Arrow  Reliance Inc., doing business as Darwin’s Natural Pet Products. Products are sold online direct to consumers.

UPDATE: The company just issued a public response to the FDA’s warning; it can be read here

 

The Recall: The Affected Products/Lots:

Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Chicken Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Package: 5309(11)181019
Manufacture Date: October 19, 2018

Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Chicken Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Package: 5375(11)181106
Manufacture Date: November 11, 2018

Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Turkey Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Package: 5339(11)181026
Manufacture Date: October 26, 2018

 

What You Should Know About Salmonella

Salmonella poses a risk to animals ingesting the affected product (including dogs and cats) and can also be transmitted to humans. Pets infected with salmonella may display symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Lethargy and shock;
  • Diarrhea (which may last up to 3-4 weeks or longer);
  • Vomiting;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Mucus and/or blood in stool.

People infected with salmonella can also have:

  • Diarrhea;
  • Fever; and
  • Abdominal cramps.

For some people, their diarrhea may be severe enough to require hospitalization.

What to do Next

Consumers should contact their veterinarian if their dogs have consumed any of these recalled products and are exhibiting any of the symptoms listed above.  Also, contact your own doctor if you are feeling any symptoms of salmonella.

The affected product should be thrown away immediately.

Consumers should thoroughly wash their hands after handling any affected products or cleaning any potentially contaminated surfaces including freezers/refrigerators where the product was stored, bowls, utensils, bedding, toys and floors.

 

Sources: The Truth about Pet Food, the Dog Food Advisor and the FDA.

 


© 2019. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

El Paso County Colorado: Rabies Resurface After 45 Years

Rabies Have Resurfaced in El Paso County CO

After 45 years (1974), a canine has tested positive for rabies in El Paso County in the state of Colorado.

Thanks to the strict laws and easy availability of the rabies vaccine in the United States, rabies in pets in extremely rare.

An infected animal spreads rabies through their saliva. Rabies can also be transmitted to people from infected animals when the rabid animal’s saliva gets into a person’s:

  • open wound or cut; or
  • eyes, nose or mouth.

Vaccinations are especially critical in places where wildlife and humans live in close proximity as Dr. Robin Johnson, medical director at El Paso County Public Health, explains: “Pet owners need to understand how close the threat of rabies is to their families. Living in Colorado, rabies is often as close as your own backyard due to the skunks, raccoons or foxes that walk through there. Vaccinating your pets is your first line of defense.”

 

Source: Dog Tests Positive for Rabies for 1st Time in 45 Years

RECALL: Hill’s Pet Food Recall Is Expanded

 

Hill’s Pet Nutrition (of Topeka, KS) expanded its voluntary recall of January 31st to include canned dog food products due to the presence of elevated levels of Vitamin D.  Specific lots of Prescription Diet and Science Diet dog foods are included in the expanded recall and were distributed to both retail pet stores and veterinary clinics throughout the U.S.

According to Hill’s, no dry foods, cat foods or treats are affected by these recalls.

Why the Recall

Hill’s originally received “a complaint in the United States about a dog exhibiting signs of elevated Vitamin D levels.” The recall was expanded after a detailed review isolated the issue to a vitamin premix from an American supplier.

The Recall: What Products and What’s Being Done

For a complete list of recalled products (including both the January 31st and March 20th recalls), click here.

According to an email sent to veterinarians on March 20th, Hill’s Pet Nutrition has:

  1. Expanded the availability of their consumer call center to 7 days a week (800-445-5777).
  2. Promised to begin collection of affected products from stores, clinics and shelters beginning March 21st.
  3. Promised to pay for:
    1. Diagnostic screening for Hypervitaminosis D for any pet who has consumed the recalled food;
    2. Continued diagnostic testing and medical treatment for affected pets until they are back to normal.

What You Should Know About Elevated Levels of Vitamin D

Dogs who eat elevated levels of Vitamin D may exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Excessive drooling
  • Weight loss

When consumed at very high levels, dogs can face serious health issues (including potentially life-threatening) including renal (kidney) dysfunction.

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately contact their veterinarian if their dogs have consumed this recalled product and are exhibiting the symptoms listed above.

The affected product should be thrown away immediately or returned to the purchase place for a full refund (unopened products only).

Consumers with any questions should contact Hill’s Pet Nutrition (Consumer Affairs) at 800-445-5777 (Every Day from 7am-7pm CST) or via email at ContactUs@HillsPet.com for more information.

 

Sources: Truth About Pet Food and the Dog Food Advisor.

Turmeric: The Golden Healer for Dogs

Turmeric: The Spice Your Dog Needs

Dog owners, do you recognize (and better yet, use) this powerful, all-natural spice to support your K9’s best health?


This “golden spice” (from India and Southeast Asia) offers a wealth of health benefits for your beloved canineTurmeric can help your aging dog companion usually without side effects.

Does your dog suffer from:

  • Arthritis?
  • Cancer?
  • Pain?
  • Allergies?
  • Chronic Inflammation?
  • Kidney, Dental or Digestive Issues?

 

If your dog suffers from any of these health challenges,

click here to learn about the 5 benefits of turmeric for dogs

without harmful side effects from our friends at Dogs Love Kale.

(P.S. This information could also help YOU!)

 


 

Happy New Year to Dogs and Their Owners!

The New Year celebrations are right around the corner.

As you’re making plans for your end-of-the-year parties and resolutions, be sure to include your dog and his comfort in your plans!

What do you need to consider to ensure Fido enjoys the festivities? Keep reading to find out.

 

Fireworks

With your dog’s incredible hearing ability, fireworks can be a dog’s WORST nightmare! Consider this: humans hear at a range of 20 and 20,000 Hz. In stark contrast, our beloved K9s hear a frequency range of 40 to 60,000 Hz! With that kind of hearing, loud fireworks can rattle even the calmest dog.

Click here to learn more from our blog post last year.

Holiday Food & Drinks

Sadly, emergency vet visits increase this time of year and they can quickly destroy the holiday spirit and your budget! Remember, many of the foods, treats and drinks (alcoholic and those that are not) you enjoy can be potentially dangerous to your canine. Traditional favorites include (but are not limited to):

  • Turkey, skin & bones, ham ,etc.
  • Table scraps (especially those that are spicy and fatty)
  • Alcoholic beverages including egg nog, beer, wine and cocktails
  • Yeast dough
  • Sweets (especially those with xylitol) and chocolate

Have a Safe and Happy New Year!

New Year’s Parties & Celebrations

Not all dogs are well-equipped to deal with the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, especially when it comes into their safe place/home. Keep in mind, these celebrations are never a good time to “socialize” your dog especially if they usually tend to not be social.

If you’re bringing the New Year’s Eve party home, make sure your dog (and even other pets) has a safe and quiet place so they are both secure and protected from running away or unleashing an unwanted bite (because of fear, anxiety or stress).

In addition, below are some other traditional New Year’s Eve items you should consider banning to keep the pets in your home safe during the celebrations:

  • Confetti
  • Sparklers
  • Party favors
  • Glow sticks & bracelets
  • Party poppers
  • Noisemakers

With some thoughtful planning, you and your pets can enjoy the New Year’s celebrations safely!

Happy New Year's 2019

 


Additional Reading:

Holiday Pet Safety: www.avma.org/public/PetCare/Pages/holidays.aspx

Holiday Safety Tips: www.aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/holiday-safety-tips

8 Tips for Helping Your Anxious Pet When There are Fireworks Outside: www.petmd.com/dog/slideshows/care/noise-anxiety-staying-calm-during-celebrations

 

Guest Blog: Is Reiki Energy Healing Right for Your Dog?

Dogs are mindful, spiritual beings who generously give of themselves to the lives of their humans. If you appreciate the beauty of nature and animals or share your life with companion animals, you already appreciate this priceless, unconditional love. Many dog lovers believe the relationship with their canines is based on a pure, spiritual connection creating deep, long-lasting bonds. Reiki can help promote those closer bonds.

Unfortunately, just like their humans, dogs can also suffer from physical and emotional issues. This is especially true if an animal has suffered a difficult or traumatic experience; came from not-so-ideal circumstances or is struggling with grief, abuse or fear of humans.K9 stress may also occur due to:

  • A restricted or unnatural lifestyle like overbreeding;
  • Boredom and a lack of regular exercise or mental stimulation; and
  • An improper diet.

Any of these situations can produce an unhappy, unhealthy and stressed dog. Reiki can help promote healing and the ultimate return to health.

What is Reiki?

The word “Reiki” comes from the Japanese terms “higher power” and “life force energy.” Reiki is a non-invasive, respect-based and meditative energy healing practice. It was traditionally used in human circles for spiritual healing, stress relief and self-improvement. For generations, people have benefited from the peace, relaxation and healing shifts that come from a Reiki session.

But energy healing is not just for people. Reiki can also be a simple, yet powerful form of energy healing for enhancing calm and well-being in your canine companion while creating and fostering a closer bond with them.

Originally designed for use in shelters and sanctuaries to calm its stressed and anxious residents, Reiki has evolved into an effective tool to calm an upset dog as well as assist an ill or injured one. Regular sessions of Reiki may also help keep long-term, chronic diseases, disorders or pain in check and even help lessen the severity of the symptoms.

Hands-On or Hands-Off Reiki?

Reiki energy healing can be done in one of two ways: hands-on or hands-off (over distance). The hands-on approach is generally more effective if the dog enjoys being touched. In cases where the dog does not tolerate physical touching (for reasons ranging from medical to psychological), distance – or hands-off – Reiki may be a better option.

Most dogs enjoy the calming, soothing and healing energies employed by a skilled Reiki practitioner. Some dogs cannot get close enough during a session and may actually lean into the practitioner or even end up fast asleep in their lap.

For dogs in high-stress situations (such as shelters or when being transported for adoption or veterinary purposes), distance reiki usually works better. It can also used for K9s who do not live near their Reiki practitioner or who are in hospice.

Reiki works well with most animals because they are naturally open and receptive to energy. They naturally understand and respond to the flow of energy and tend to heal more quickly than people since they are not prone to mental blocks or defense mechanisms that can block the flow of healing energy.

What to Expect

Sessions can run from 20-60 minutes, depending on the dog and their willingness to staying still for an extended period of time. The greatest benefits from Reiki are achieved with regular sessions (weekly, bi-weekly or monthly) determined by each individual dog and the level of healing they require.

Many pet parents report positive effects in their dog’s general health and disposition with the use of Reiki. Feedback from others have offered hope in the reduction of chronic pain and even the possible reversal or remission of severe medical issues.


However, please remember that Reiki is not a replacement for routine veterinary care, or a reason to disregard needed medications or medical procedures.


Reiki offers a non-invasive energy healing suitable for any dog and condition. It will not interfere or contraindicate with any regular veterinary care and serves as a useful tool in helping your dog with physical or psychological issues. Please keep in mind that even in healing sessions for ailing animals, it may only ease an inevitable passing. Reiki is powerful, however, it is not a perfect cure-all. Ultimately, it is always the animal guardian’s decision regarding what level of care to seek including which modalities.

When approached with an open mind and heart, Reiki energy healing for your dog may offer a healthier, calmer and happier life.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Raven Hannah is a self-described animal whisperer, lifelong pet parent, and owner of HolisticPetsAndPeeps.com. She is certified as a holistic consultant, aromatherapist, Reiki practitioner (for animals and people), and pet nutritionist. She encourages others to celebrate animals as part of the family, as well as keep them happy, healthy, and spoiled! When Raven isn’t busy being a slave to her very demanding senior cats or helping her favorite rescues with fundraising projects, she is most likely working on growing her businesses and raising awareness in an effort to make this world a better place for all creatures.


 

RECALLS: A Look at 10 Years of Pet Food Recalls

An in-depth look by Susan Thixton of TruthAboutPetFood.com at the past ten years of Pet Food and Treat recalls and what we can learn.

A Decade of Recalls

During the past ten years (January 1, 2009 to November 4, 2018) did you know there’s been 173 pet food recalls posted on the FDA website?

BUT wait; that’s NOT the whole story!

Those 173 recalls represents the number of recall Press Releases issued, NOT the total number of actual pet foods recalled. In addition, some recalls count as “one” recall even though multiple products may actually be involved in the “one” recall.

The Recalls: What’s Actually Included?

The recalls over the past ten years have included the following categories:

  • 59 Treat Recalls
  • 48 Raw Recalls
  • 45 Kibble Recalls
  • 17 Canned Recalls
  • 3 Dehydrated Recalls
  • 1 Cooked, Sold Frozen Pet Food

What Should YOU do Next?

Education is the best defense in keeping your pets safe and healthy.

Learn more about the last decade of recalls at TruthAboutPetFood.com.  Learn about the specific causes for the recalls and which ones pose the greatest risk for your pet. (Hint: Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli rank at #1.)

Did you know that some causes behind the recalls even pose health risks to YOU, the pet owner?! (Including infants and children 5 years and younger; adults aged 65 and older; AND people with weakened immune systems.)

Your Dog Depends On You To Protect Him!Your Cat Depends on You To Protect Her!

 

Remember, your pet is depending on you to be his advocate and educated consumer!

What you don’t know can hurt your beloved pet!

 

 

(Again, we thank Susan Thixton for this in-depth expose about what we can learn from the past ten years of Pet Food and Treat recalls.)

 

Source: Truth About Pet Food.

RECALL: Nutrisca Dry Dog Food

Nutrisca (St Louis, MO) is voluntarily recalling one formula of their dry dog food (Chicken and Chickpea). The recall was issued due to the presence of elevated levels of Vitamin D. (Note: The company also issued another recall for their Natural Life Chicken & Potato Dry Dog Food.)  

Why the Recall

The recall was issued after an investigation of complaints from 3 pet owners for Vitamin D toxicity after consumption. The investigation revealed a formulation error led to the elevated levels.

The Recall: What and Where

The recall specifically involves:

4 lbs Nutrisca® Chicken and Chickpea Dry Dog Food Bag UPC: 8-84244-12495-7
15 lbs Nutrisca® Chicken and Chickpea Dry Dog Food Bag UPC: 8-84244-12795-8
28 lbs Nutrisca® Chicken and Chickpea Dry Dog Food Bag UPC: 8-84244-12895-5

(Note: Nutrisca Chicken & Chickpea wet dog foods are not impacted by this recall.)

A Best By Date of February 25, 2020 – September 13, 2020 is found on the back or bottom of the bag.

The recalled product was distributed to retail nationwide.

What You Should Know About Elevated Levels of Vitamin D

Dogs who eat elevated levels of Vitamin D may exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Excessive drooling
  • Weight loss

When consumed at very high levels, dogs can face serious health issues including renal dysfunction.

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately contact their veterinarian if their dogs have consumed this recalled product and are exhibiting the symptoms listed above.

The affected product should be thrown away or returned to the purchase place for a full refund.

Consumers with any questions should contact Natural Life Pet Products at 888-279-9420 (Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm CST) or via email at ConsumerServices@Nutrisca.com for more information.

 

Sources: Truth About Pet Food and the FDA.

RECALL: Natural Life Dry Dog Food

Natural Life Pet Products (St Louis, MO) is voluntarily recalling its Chicken & Potato dry dog food in 17.5 lb bags.  The recall was issued for the presence of elevated levels of Vitamin D.

Why the Recall

The recall was issued after an investigation of complaints from 3 pet owners for Vitamin D toxicity after consumption. The investigation revealed a formulation error led to the elevated levels.

The Recall: What and Where

The recall specifically involves:

  • The 17.5 lbs Natural Life Chicken & Potato Dry Dog Food
  • A bag UPC of 0-12344-08175-1
  • A Best By Date of May 29, 2020 – August 10, 2020 (found on the back or bottom of the bag)

The recalled dog food was distributed to retail stores in:

  • Alabama
  • California
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • North and South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Virginia

What You Should Know About Elevated Levels of Vitamin D

Dogs who eat elevated levels of Vitamin D may exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Excessive drooling
  • Weight loss

When consumed at very high levels, dogs can face serious health issues including renal dysfunction.

What to do Next

Consumers should immediately contact their veterinarian if their dogs have consumed this recalled product and are exhibiting the symptoms listed above.

The affected product should be thrown away or returned to the purchase place for a full refund.

Consumers with any questions should contact Natural Life Pet Products at 888-279-9420 (Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm CST) or via email at ConsumerServices@Nutrisca.com for more information.

 

Sources: Truth About Pet Food and the FDA.

RECALL: Performance Dog Frozen Raw Pet Food

Bravo Packing, Inc. (of Carneys Point, NJ) has issued a voluntary recall for two  products: Performance Dog in the 2-lb and 5-lb plastic sleeves. The recall was issued for potential salmonella contamination.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated after an FDA inspection collected and tested a sample which tested positive for salmonella. No human or animal illness has been reported to date.

The recall specifically involves:

Performance Dog Frozen Raw Pet Food in 2-pound and 5-pound plastic sleeves with the Manufacture Date Code of 071418. (This code is printed on the cardboard boxes containing the plastic sleeves, NOT on the individual sleeves. There are NO unique ID numbers of the sleeves.)

If customers purchased either of these recalled products after July 14, 2018, the FDA recommends throwing the product away to protect the health of your dog and yourself from potential contamination from salmonella.

Note: Performance Dog typically works with Tefco, a Brooklyn, NYC distributor which fulfills orders to brick-and-mortar retail stores and to consumers directly.


Product label, Bravo Performance Dog


What You Should Know About Salmonella

Salmonella poses a risk to animals ingesting the affected product (including dogs and cats) and can also be transmitted to humans. Pets infected with salmonella may display symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Lethargy and shock;
  • Diarrhea (which may last up to 3-4 weeks or longer);
  • Vomiting;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Mucus in stool.

What to do Next

Consumers with any questions should contact Bravo Packing, Inc., at 856-299-1044 (Monday-Friday, 6am-2pm EST or Saturday, 4am-9am EST) or via their website at http://www.BravoPacking.com.

 

Sources: Dog Food AdvisorFDA Website and Truth About Pet Food.

RECALL: Steve’s Real Food

Steve’s Real Food  (of Salt Lake City, UT) issued a voluntary recall on September 7th for 3 separate product lots: Turducken Recipe dog food (5-lb bags), Quest Emu Diet cat food and Quest Beef Diet cat food (both in 2-lb bags) for potential salmonella or listeria contamination.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated after a  routine sampling by the Washington Department of Agriculture positively revealed the presence of the bacteria. Subsequent testing by the Company resulted in negative results for both salmonella and listeria. No illnesses have been reported to date.

The recall specifically involves:

 



What You Should Know About Salmonella

Salmonella poses a risk to animals ingesting the affected product (including dogs and cats) and can also be transmitted to humans. Pets infected with salmonella may display symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Lethargy and shock;
  • Diarrhea (which may last up to 3-4 weeks or longer);
  • Vomiting;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Dehydration; and
  • Mucus in stool.

What You Should Know About Listeria Monocytogenes

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans (if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product). Pets infected with listeria may display symptoms including:

  • Mild to severe diarrhea;
  • Anorexia;
  • Fever;
  • Nervous, muscular and respiratory system issues;
  • Abortion;
  • Depression; and
  • Shock and even death.

Infected animals can also serve as sources of infection to other household animals and humans.

What to do Next

Consumers with any of the recalled products should immediately return it to their retailer, where it was purchased, for a full refund. Consumers with questions can contact Steve’s Real Food at 888-526-1900 (Monday-Friday: 9am-4pm Mountain).

 

Source: FDA: Steve’s Real Food Recall 

RECALL: G & C Raw

G & C Raw, LLC (of Versailles, OH) issued a recall on August 6th for two of their products, 1-lb containers of Pat’s Cat Turkey Cat Food and 2-lb containers of Ground Lamb Dog Food for potential Listeria contamination.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated after a  routine sampling by the Ohio Department of Agriculture revealed the presence of the bacteria. No illnesses have been reported to date.

The affected products are not being produced or distributed until the investigation has been completed and the source of the problem identified.

The recall specifically involves:

  • PAT’S CAT TURKEY CAT FOOD
    • (30) 1-lb clear plastic containers
    • Lot #WWPKTF051618
    • Distributed in OH, MI, IN, PAN, KY, NC and GA through direct delivery
  • GROUND LAMB DOG FOOD
    • (40) 2-lb plastic container
    • Lot #MFF022718
    • Distributed in OH, MI, IN, PAN, KY, NC and GA through direct delivery


What You Should Know About Listeria Monocytogenes

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans (if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product). Pets infected with listeria may display symptoms including:

  • Mild to severe diarrhea;
  • Anorexia;
  • Fever
  • Nervous, muscular and respiratory system issues;
  • Abortion;
  • Depression; and
  • Shock and even death.

Infected animals can also serve as sources of infection to other household animals and humans.

What to do Next

Consumers with any of the recalled products should immediately return it to G & C Raw, 225 N. West Street, Versailles, OH for a full refund. Consumers with questions can contact the company at 937-827-0010 (Eastern) or by email at GCRawDogFood@yahoo.com.

 

Source: Truth About Pet Food: G & C Recall, August, 2018 and FDA: G & C Raw, LLC Recall

K9 Etiquette in Public: 101


Dog ownership is a popular way of life in the United States. With an estimated 89.7 million dogs owned (as of 2017 according to American Pet Products Association (APPA)), chances are you have seen plenty of dogs out with their owners in public. Some of them are well-behaved and unfortunately, some are not. If you enjoy bringing your pooch to dog-friendly public places and businesses, make sure they earn a good reputation! Below are a few ideas on how to practice good doggie etiquette.

Know Local Regulations 

In many places, keeping your dog on a leash while you’re in public isn’t just good manners – it’s the law. A good leash (including retractable ones) should be long enough to allow your dog some freedom while you walk, but not so much that you lose control. Leashes also help let others know you are in control – many people will become uncomfortable if an unleashed dog is running toward them.

Safety

As you walk your dog, keep safety at the forefront of your mind. Use sidewalks if they are available; if not, always walk on the left side of road, facing traffic. If you are walking around daybreak or dusk, bring a flashlight and/or wear reflective clothing so you stay easily visible. Remember, darkness can fall quickly in the winter months so be prepared. Also make sure your dog is wearing identification tags so you can get him back in case he gets away from you.

Personal Space and Training

Make sure your dog maintains a respectful distance from other people when you are in public. Many people are afraid of dogs and others don’t want to be bothered or licked. It’s also important to realize that not all dogs you meet in public are friendly and letting your dog run up to them can cause negative reactions and possibly even a fight.

A leash is the best way to control your dog’s behavior coupled with training some basic voice commands. The basic commands should include:

  • sit;
  • stay;
  • heel;
  • leave it; and
  • come.

It’s fairly easy to teach these basic commands using your dog’s favorite treats. For example, to train your dog to sit, hold a treat by his nose and slowly raise your hand up, which will cause his head to come up and his bottom to go down. Once he is in a sitting position (and holding it for a few seconds), say “sit” and give him the treat, along with some affection. Repeat until he can do it on command consistently (each dog learns differently, so be patient). You can follow the same basic procedure for other commands as well. If you want some help with training these basic commands, research training methods, attend an obedience class or hire a dog trainer for one-on-one training.

Waste Patrol

This is pretty simple – always scoop your dog’s poop. It’s a good idea to bring extra plastic baggies every time you go out to make sure you have enough. Letting your dog urinate in public is fine, but don’t let them go on anything a human might touch – flower beds, mailboxes, trash cans, etc. Your neighbors will appreciate it if you keep your dog from peeing on their lawns as well.

Be Aware

No matter what happens when you’re out with your dog, be aware of others around you. Know when your dog might do something inappropriate and always be ready to head him off. If you can’t stop him, at least acknowledge the issues and explain that you will take care of the problem. Sometimes, a simple apology or acknowledgement goes a long way toward defusing a potentially difficult situation.

If you are like many dog owners, you want to have your dog out in public with you as much as possible. Remember that good pet etiquette starts with owners (that’s you), so make sure you are committed to keeping your dog’s behavior within the bounds of acceptable social behavior. Follow the tips above and you’ll be able to enjoy years of socialization and fun with your dog.

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jessica Brody is an avid dog lover and passionate advocate for rescue pets. She created OurBestFriends.pet to offer an online place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth and enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.


 

RECALL: Dave’s Pet Food

Dave’s Pet Food (Agawam, MA) has issued a voluntary recall (in cooperation with the FDA) of a single lot of their 95% Premium Beef dog food cans.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated by Dave’s Pet Food after the FDA analyzed one lot of the product and it was found to have elevated levels of thyroid hormone. The analysis was conducted by the FDA “after receiving a complaint that four dogs consuming it were found to have low Free T4 (fT4) and Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH).”

The product was distributed along the East Coast of the USA and sold in pet stores and e-commerce websites. No other products (or other products manufactured by Dave’s Pet Food) are impacted.

The recall involves:

  • A single batch (of 548 cases);
  • The 13 oz., 95% Premium Beef canned dog food;
  • The UPC Code: 85038-11167; and
  • A Date Code: 08/2020.

What You Should Know About Beef Thyroid

Elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone (which occurs naturally), may cause the following symptoms in dogs:

  • Increased Thirst & Urination;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Increased Heart Rate; and
  • Restlessness.

If high levels are consumed over an extended period of time, symptoms may increase in severity and include vomiting, diarrhea and rapid or labored breathing. If your dog has consumed any of these recalled products and is showing the symptoms listed above, immediately discontinue feeding the treat and contact your vet.

What to do Next

Consumers with any of the recalled products should immediately stop feeding it to their dogs. Consumers may receive a refund or coupon for replacement product by contacting Dave’s Pet Food at 888-763-2738 (between 9-5pm EST Monday through Friday).

 

U.S. citizens can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Canadians can report any health or safety incidents related to the use of this product by filling out the Consumer Product Incident Report Form.

Source: Dave’s Dog Food Recall, June 2018

Antler Chews: Are They Safe for Your Dog?

Should you give your dog antlers to chew?
Are antlers a safer option to other chews on the market?
Are all antlers the same?
How are antlers “graded” and what does it mean?

Dogs are natural chewers. Whether it’s a puppy exploring his new world through his mouth, or adult dogs chewing to release pent-up energy and/or stress, most dogs enjoy this instinctive behavior.

While almost anything is better than your K9 destroying your expensive leather shoes or couch to indulge their need to chew, are all chew treats created equal (and safe)?

Are all Chews Created Equal?

After the shocking revelation in 2007 about the toxic, Chinese-made dog treats sickening and even killing pets (dogs and cats); dog owners everywhere became more concerned and vigilant about the treats they were offering to their dogs.

When even more information came out about all the potentially deadly chemicals used to mass-produce rawhide in China, “safe” choices became even further limited for canine guardians. (Not to mention numerous horror studies about rawhide pieces becoming stuck or causing obstructions requiring surgery to save a dog.) Click here to learn the harmful truth behind making rawhide.

Are Antlers a Safer Option?

So, what about something more “natural,” like antlers from wild deer or elk?

Like most subjects about dog health, “expert” opinions about whether antlers are a completely safe chewing option falls between both ends of the spectrum. From slick marketing campaigns raving about the wonders of antlers for your dog’s chewing pleasure to so-called dog experts decrying even the thought of offering an antler to your dog to chew. While the controversy rages on, educate yourself on the pros and cons of antler chews for your dog.

Factors to Consider

Deciding whether an antler chew is good (or not) for your dog involves a number of factors, including:

  • What kind of chewer your dog is;
  • Your dog’s current dental health;
  • The “grade” of antler you are planning to give your dog to chew; and
  • The supplier/distributor of the antler chews and whether they sell cheaper, low-grade or inferior products.

When you know better, you can make better choices for what to safely offer your dog to chew. Knowing your own dog is the first place to start. Is your dog a heavy or aggressive chewer? The chewing needs or habits are vastly different for a Chihuahua versus a Rottweiler. Smaller teeth and jaws cannot stand up to extremely hard objects like antlers.

Also, consider your dog’s current dental health. Have they suffered from dental issues that would rule out giving them hard items to chew?

Not sure if your dog’s teeth are healthy? Click here to learn more.

If you have determined your dog’s dental health and chewing needs can tolerate hard chewing, keep reading to learn more about antler chews.

What IS an Antler?

Antlers come from moose, caribou, elk, reindeer and deer. Typically, elk antlers are the easiest ones to find.

It’s also believed that antlers do not splinter or chip as easily as some other bones or toys. While antlers may seem similar to “horns” … they are actually different. Cow horns are made from a substance call keratin; similar to our nails and hair. They also have a lining of bone inside them.

Antlers, on the other hand, are made from real bone and cartilage with a marrow core. They are actually a bony outgrowth of the animal’s skull. Since they are actual bone, they are also very hard. Antlers are typically shed each year allowing a new set to grow in their place. Antlers (unlike processed bones or rawhides) also offer nutritional value in the form of:

  • Calcium
  • Protein
  • Chondroitin Sulfate
  • Glucosamine
  • Collagen
  • Magnesium
  • Iron and Zinc

For dogs fed a raw diet, bones are important to their diet. But, it is not necessary for them to eat very hard bones (like antlers or weight-bearing leg bones).

Grading Antlers: What it all Means

Antlers are “graded” on five different levels. Before you buy any kind of antler for your dog to chew, below is what you need to know first.

Grade A+ Antlers

These are the highest quality and most pristine antlers, previously reserved for high-end craft and artisan use. They constitute less than 5% of all antlers each year. Only a few stores and distributors are focused on selling antlers of this caliber.

Grade A Antlers

These antlers comprise the top 10-15% of all antlers each year. They have been shed during the current – or previous – year. These antlers will appear a little more on the light-brown side; as they have been freshly shed and have had only minimal exposure to the elements.

Grade B Antlers

This grade of antler comprises the bulk of all antlers sold online by the “high-end” brands. These antlers are easily recognized as they will be white from sun bleaching which also means they are dried out. They may also show visible marks of rodent chewing. These antlers are approximately one to two years old. While they may be sold by well-established brands, it does not mean they are “safe dog chews.” While they are not the worst of the antlers, they are definitely not the safest for your dog based on their age and being dried out which means they could splinter or chip much more easily.

Grades C and D

The final two grades are combined together because, for all intents and purposes, these antlers are “junk” and definitely not safe for your dog. These antlers are not only white from years in the sun and exposure to the elements; but there is also a white powder that can be easily scraped off the surface. In addition, the antler has almost a coral-like porous crystalline structure to it, due to having lost too much moisture. This makes it even more susceptible to breaking, splintering or chipping even with minimal effort. These antlers are commonly sold in the big-box pet stores and outdoor sports stores.

A Few Final Cautions

  • Make sure any antler product you buy and give to your dog is sourced from the USA (preferably from organically raised animals). Note: China does chemically process and ship antlers to the United States.
  • Also, make sure you buy the right size antler for your dog (one that cannot be easily swallowed).
  • Do not give puppies any kind of antlers to chew on. (The high protein content can cause stomach upset and diarrhea.)
  • And finally, if you do decide to give your dog an antler chew (or any other chew as well), always supervise them to keep them safe! No chew product is 100% safe and healthy for every dog. Digestive or dental issues, possible choking (in the mouth or throat) and intestinal obstructions are always a risk.
  • Check with your veterinarian first before giving your dog any chew product.

 


Additional Resources:

The Perils of Gum Disease in Dogs

Dogs Love These Chews, But They Fracture Teeth Like Crazy

Are Deer Antlers Safe for Dogs to Chew On?

Antlers for Dogs: Are Deer Antlers Safe for Dogs to Chew On?

Are Antlers Safe for Dogs?

Deer Antlers as a Chew Toy for Dogs

Are Deer Antlers for Dogs a Good Chew Toy?


© 2018. Cold Noses News. All Rights Reserved. Content may not be reproduced, displayed or published without prior written permission of Cold Noses News. Content may be shared with proper credit and link back to Cold Noses News.


 

Fido, I Love You; but STOP Jumping on People!

For a passionate dog lover, there’s nothing better than coming home after a rough day and being greeted by a happy and jumping Fido. This display of unconditional love makes all the woes melt away.

But, what if someone else is coming through your door? Perhaps your young child’s friend? Maybe your boss? Or worse, an elderly person?

Do you really want your dog to jump on people in your home or anywhere else for that matter?

Not everyone loves dogs (I know it’s shocking, but those people do exist!). Even other dog lovers may not appreciate dog paw prints (especially dirty ones) on their clothes or dripping slobber on their face. The truth is that “hugging,” “kissing” or any unwanted jumping is not polite, acceptable dog behavior.

Why Commands May Not Work

FACT: Our dogs want our attention more than (almost) anything else in the world! If they get any reaction when they jump on you – or someone else – they will certainly do it again.

What’s often tough for humans to understand is that our dogs don’t understand any other language but “dog.” So, even when you tell your dog to “get down,” “no jump” or even “you should know better than to jump on people,” your dog simply understands that his behavior got you to notice him … in other words, to pay attention to him! One of the things they want most!

So, even if you’re trying to get the dog to stop jumping by giving him a command such as “off” or “down,” pushing the dog down with your hand(s), or trying to hold the dog back by his collar, he is still getting attention for the behavior. It doesn’t matter to him that the attention is negative; it still counts as attention (much like young kids who will do just about anything to get your attention, positive or negative).

When guests enter your home, you want to show them you are in control of your dog, so you are even more apt to talk, touch or restrain him during these times. Here’s the problem – the more you do this, the more the dog realizes (especially when new people enter) he will get lots of attention for jumping. Score one for Fido (zero for the human).

But you can’t just do nothing right?! So, what should you do?

Patience, Consistency and Calmness are Key

First, practice all training in the privacy of your home where your dog will be less distracted. In the beginning, limit the training to just you and the members of the household. Consistently practice the acceptable behavior with every single person (adults and children), every single time anyone walks in. Remember, it takes 100% consistency for a dog to learn something new, so be patient and stick with it. If you give up, he will quickly go back to his old habits and be even more confused about what you really want.

Second (and this one is a bit harder), as much as you love those “hugs” when you come home, by allowing Fido to continue this behavior with you, he will think it’s acceptable to hug everyone. How does he know that it is acceptable for him to hug you, but not other people? Stay consistent and clear in what you do want from your dog.

It takes time to break a habit (just like for us humans), so remain patient and calm. Getting angry, anxious or annoyed will only confuse your dog and make the training process longer and harder. If you find yourself running out of patience, end the training session on a positive note and try again later.

Begin with this basic exercise each time you (and others) come home. When Fido jumps on you, turn around so that you no longer face him (effectively removing the attention he seeks). He may jump on your back. Stand perfectly still and stay calm. If he comes around to your front, turn around again, so that you face away from him. He may jump on you several times, but if you completely ignore him (no eye contact, touch or talk), he will eventually get bored and try to figure out a new way to get your attention.

At first, your dog may try to get your attention in another negative way, such as by mouthing your hand, barking at you or tugging your pant leg. Remember, ignore these behaviors completely. You are teaching him that these behaviors will no longer get your attention (the thing he wants most).

If you completely ignore him for a few minutes (each dog learns at his own pace; so again, be patient), he will eventually walk away, grab a toy, sit down, or even lie down. THIS is the time to pour on the affection! You want to show him that calm behavior – with all four paws on the ground – will earn him your attention.

At first, he may get so excited by your attention that he may jump up again. As soon as he does, immediately turn your back again to remind him that jumping will not earn him attention. You may go through the process of him jumping or barking again, but eventually he will choose the right behavior again. When he does, be sure to reward him with praise and affection. Repeat this process again and again until he can handle the affection without jumping up for more.

Always end each session on a positive note. Don’t walk away frustrated. Be patient. He has never done this before. What has worked in the past is no longer working for him. You need to be patient and consistent. Give him the chance to succeed. You will be so proud of him (and yourself) when he learns what it is you really want from him!

Now Practice with Someone New

Once Fido has stopped jumping on everyone in your own household, bring in a friend to help.

Inform your friend ahead of time not to talk to him or pay any attention to him if he jumps. Have the guest turn around if Fido jumps. As hard as it will be, you will need to refrain from talking to Fido, pulling him or addressing him at all. He (again) needs to figure out how to properly earn attention on his own. Ok, so jumping doesn’t work with my family, but when I sit down, they give me love. Maybe if I stop jumping on this person and sit down, she will pay attention to me too. 

When Fido gives her the desired behavior, have your friend reward with either verbal praise or enthusiastic petting. Remind her, however, that if he jumps, she will need to repeat the process. Then start inviting more and more people to come over and practice. Soon enough, with practice, consistency and patience, Fido will stop jumping on guests!

The most important part of this exercise is to remember to reward Fido when he is calm with all four paws on the ground. Many people remember to ignore when he jumps, but then they forget to give affection for the desired behavior. This defeats the training purpose. Fido needs to learn what he should do to get attention. Remember, he just wants to please you and get you to pay attention to him. So show him how to politely get your affection and give him those “hugs” when he is on the ground.

Trust me; your bad day will still get better when you come home, especially when you see him so well-behaved and calm!

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Shannon Sumner, MA, CPDT, is a dog behaviorist and owner of Polite Paws, LLC in Downingtown, PA. You can find her at www.PolitePawsDogTraining.com and also at www.facebook.com/Polite-Paws-Puppy-and-Dog-Training-LLC-129384990402/.


 

RECALL: Merrick Beef Dog Treats

Merrick Pet Care (Amarillo, TX) has issued a voluntary recall of five production codes of their beef treat products. The recalled products include: Prime Patties Real Beef Recipe, Sausage Cuts Real Beef Recipe, Real Beef Jerky, Real Beef Sausage Cuts and Real Steak Patties.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated by Merrick after the FDA shared a consumer complaint of their dog’s health being temporarily impacted after eating Merrick Backcountry Great Plains Real Beef Jerky, 4.5 oz. The dog fully recovered after the treat was no longer fed.

According to a press release from Merrick, “we have not received any similar reports to date from consumers about issues with these products.”

These treats are distributed in the United States through pet speciality, grocery and online retailers with limited distribution in Canada.

The limited recall includes only the production codes listed below (production codes are listed on the lower back of treat bags):

What You Should Know About Beef Thyroid

Elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone (which occurs naturally), may cause the following symptoms in dogs:

  • Increased Thirst & Urination;
  • Weight Loss;
  • Increased Heart Rate; and
  • Restlessness.

If high levels are consumed over an extended period of time, symptoms may increase in severity and include vomiting, diarrhea and rapid or labored breathing. If your dog has consumed any of these recalled products and is showing the symptoms listed above, immediately discontinue feeding the treat and contact your vet.

What to do Next

Consumers with any of the recalled products may receive a refund by:

 

Source: Merrick Pet Care Beef Dog Treats Recall

Be the BEST First-Time Dog Owner!


Are you getting a dog for the first time in your life?

What can you expect? How should you prepare?

Be the best first-time dog owner with the tips below!

 

It’s important to get the right type of dog. Emotions can run wild when you start your search (especially with those huge puppy eyes!), but before you commit yourself to a particular breed, do some research first.

 

Things to Consider before Adopting a Dog

Considering a big or even giant-breed dog? Without proper training, they can be difficult to restrain even on a leash and transport. Active breeds like Shepherds, Labs, Weimaraners, Huskies and any Sporting, Working, Hunting or Herding dogs all need a great deal of exercise, especially in the first five years of their lives. (Be prepared to walk them for at least an hour a day, maybe more.) Without proper exercise and training on a daily basis, large dogs can quickly become unmanageable and exhibit a variety of behavioral problems. With that being said, big dogs may work out really well for runners and frisbee enthusiasts as most have greater endurance than smaller breeds.

Even if you have a fenced-in yard, your dog will still require regular and adequate exercise and socialization.

Do you suffer from allergies? If you do, you may also be allergic to dogs. If you are, you will need to take that into consideration when choosing a dog. If you have your heart set on getting a dog, consider breeds that shed very little, like Poodles and Portuguese water dogs (like the First Dog, Bo).

Another important consideration is the size and nature of your home. If you are renting, for instance, you need to check with your landlord first about what kind of dog, if any, is allowed. Many landlords will allow small dogs, but not the larger breeds. Before adopting a Pitbull or Staffordshire Terrier, check your local ordinances for any breed restrictions in your community. Denver and Miami, for instance, still outlaw Pitbulls and even dogs that look like them.

Also, keep in mind that many landlords today require pet deposits or even monthly “pet rent” if you have a dog in the residence.

Consider rescue first. According to the ASPCA, animal shelters take in 7.6 million dogs and cats each year. Unfortunately, only 2.7 million are adopted each year. When you adopt a rescue or shelter dog, you are saving two lives; the dog you adopt and the dog who will take his now-available place.

Still not sure what breed is right for you? Take this quick quiz at Dogtime.com and find out in just 21 quick questions!

 

Preparing Your Home for Your New Dog

Before bringing Fido into your home, review it relative to the safety of your dog and your belongings. Keep in mind that happy dog tails can be disastrous to fragile knick-knacks, plants and more. Relocate such items to out-of-reach shelves or protected cabinets for your dog’s safety. Also keep food, candy and potential poisonous plants out of reach of inquisitive noses and mouths.

Also buy a comfy (and easy-to-clean) dog bed and/or dog crate that will become your dog’s comfort zone. Dog crates are wonderful training tools for both puppies and older dogs; it gives them a “safe place” to go when they get tired or are overwhelmed.

 

You’ll also need a collar, leash or harness, dog bowls, dog toys to keep your dog busy (and distracted from inappropriate chewing) and a well-formulated dog food. Local experts can help you make the best, well-informed choices.

Bonding with Your Dog

Congratulations! You’ve done your homework and found the best breed for you and your lifestyle and have prepared your home for the new four-legged arrival!

Remember, your dog will need a period of adjustment after you adopt him and bring him home.

Patience will help make the adjustment easier and facilitate a stronger bond.

Dogs may cry, bark or whine a lot their first few days in a new place. They may want to hide in closets or under the bed. Food may be a great motivator when it comes  to helping your K9 adjust more easily (or a toy depending on your dog’s preference). Put the food (or toy) within sight and smell of your new dog; but not in their hiding spot. When he comes out to eat (or play), praise him. If he lets you, give him some reassuring pats. Before long, your dog will begin to trust both you and his surroundings. Daily brushing can also help build trust.

Make sure to walk your new dog around the neighborhood and let him get used to the new sights, smells and sounds. Introduce him to new people and dogs of all sizes. This helps build their confidence. Take your time and never force your dog to do something he seems uncomfortable in doing.

Invest in dog training! Not only will this enhance your bond with your dog, but it will also help head off or address any bad habits or negative behaviors. Dog classes or one-on-one training are both beneficial.

 

Dog ownership is, without a doubt, one of the greatest joys of life. Whether you are bringing home a new puppy or an older dog, you will enjoy many years of unconditional love by following these tips.

 

Photos By Pixabay.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jessica Brody is an avid dog lover and passionate advocate for rescue pets. She created OurBestFriends.pet to offer an online place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth and enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.


 

RECALLS: The Dog Food Recalls Continue …

Recent recalls include products made by:

  • K9 Natural
  • Vital Essentials
  • OC Raw Dog

Below are the latest recalls since our last blog post.

 


K9 Natural Ltd

On April 13th, K9 Natural Ltd of New Zealand voluntarily recalled four batches of its K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (the 2.2 and 11lb bags) that were imported to the United States in June 2017. The recall was issued due to potential Listeria monocytogenes.

The recall involves:

K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (2.2 lb bags):

Shipped to distributors/pet speciality retail stores in WA, CA, TX and CO with the batch #170517 and an expiration date of 17NOV2018.

K9 Natural Frozen Chicken Feast (11 lb bags):

Shipped to distributors/pet speciality retail stores in WA, CA, TX, CO and PA with the following batch numbers:

  • #150517 (expiration date of 15NOV2018)
  • #160517 (expiration date of 16NOV2018)
  • #170517 (expiration date of 17NOV2018)

There have been no reports of illness.

Customers with questions may contact the company via phone at 1 888 345 4680, M-F 8am-5pm PST & EST and S-S 14 &15 April 2018 8am-5pm PST & EST or email info@k9natural.com.

Click here to learn more about the K9 Natural recall.

 


 

Vital Essentials

For the third time,  another recall was issued on two Vital Essentials products: Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Toppers and Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Chub Entree for Dogs due to potential Salmonella contamination.

Salmonella can infect both dogs, cats and humans.

The recalled products can be identified with the following information:

 

Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Toppers: Lot #13815, Best by 06/04/19

Vital Essentials Frozen Beef Chub Entrée: 5 lb., Lot #13816, Best by 12/27/18

Customers may notify their retailer for a replacement or refund or contact the company at 920-370-6542.

Click here to learn more about the Vital Essentials recall.


OC Raw Dog

OC Raw Dog of Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, issued a voluntary recall of approximately 1,560 lbs of their Chicken, Fish & Produce Raw Frozen Canine Formulation due to potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

The affected products were manufactured on October 11, 2017 with a Lot number of 3652 and a Use By Date of October 11, 2018.

The recalled Lot #3652 was shipped and sold to Independent Speciality Retailers in the following states: CA, CO, FL, MD, MN, PA and VT.

Click here to read more about the OC Raw Dog recall. 

NOTE: Another recall was also issued by OC Raw Dog for its Freeze-dried Sardines because the product exceeded FDA size restrictions (of 5 inches). (The FDA has determined that salt-cured, dried or fermented un-eviscerated fish larger than 5 inches have been linked to outbreaks of botulism poisoning between 1981 and 1987 and then again in 1991.)

Click here to read more about the OC Raw Dog recall for Freeze-dried Sardines. 

 


 

We try our best to keep our readers informed with the latest recall information (here on our blog and on our Twitter/Facebook pages); unfortunately that’s not always possible. To stay informed with the latest recalls, subscribe to one (we recommend all) of the recall alerts below.

Your pet is counting on you.

Dog Food Advisor

Truth About Pet Food 

American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMA)

US Food & Drug Administration (FDA)

RECALLS: What You MUST Know

(Note: We’ve been trying to publish this post since February. But with the constant barrage of recalls, it’s been almost impossible to stay up-to-date with all the information.)

The last few months have been nothing short of frightening when it comes to recalls and our beloved pets. Unfortunately, we’ve all become a bit immune to seeing recall announcements here and there. But as the few months have clearly shown, recalls are on the rise particularly with the bacterial contamination of Salmonella which can infect dogs, cats and humans.

 

Recent recalls include products made by:

  • J.M. Smucker Company: Gravy Train, Kibbles ‘N Bits, Ol’ Roy & Skippy
  • Northwest Naturals
  • Vital Essentials
  • TruPet
  • Smokehouse Pet Products
  • Redbarn Pet Products
  • Raws for Paws
  • Darwin’s Natural Pet Products
  • Blue Ridge Beef
  • J.M. Smucker Company: Milo’s Kitchen Dog Treats
  • Blue Buffalo Company
  • Radagast Pet Food
  • Steve’s Real Food
  • Raw Basics
  • An Update on the Deadly Chinese Jerky Treats

 

Keep reading to learn more about each recall.


J.M. Smucker (Dogs & Cats)

In early February, traces of pentobarbital (a drug used to euthanize cats, dogs and horses) were found in Gravy Train canned dog food. The findings came out of an  ABC station’s investigation (WJLA in Washington, DC). The investigation found pentobarbital in 9 out of 15 cans (or 60%) of Gravy Train dog food. Over months of testing and re-testing, WJLA News tested a total of 62 samples of dog food.

Sourcing meat for pet food from a “diseased animal or an animal that has died otherwise than by slaughter” is a direct violation of federal law (Section 342(a)).

The Smucker Company (Orrvile, OH) later expanded the recall to include certain lots of Gravy Train, Kibbles ‘N Bits, Ol’ Roy and Skippy wet dog food products.

 Click here to learn more about the original recall and the affected SKUs/UPC codes.

(UPDATE: A day after the story broke on February 8th, a class action lawsuit was filed against Big Heart Brands Gravy Train for advertising, misrepresenting and selling contaminated dog foods.)

(NOTE: J.M. Smucker also recalled certain lots of canned cat food in January. Click here to learn more about this limited voluntary recall.)


Northwest Naturals

Near the end of February, Northwest Naturals of Portland Oregon, issued a recall for its 5lb frozen Chicken and Salmon pet food chubs (sealed plastic tubes) due to potential Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

While no pet or human illnesses were reported, Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product.

Click here to learn more about this recall.

 


Vital Essentials

Again at the end of February, Carnivore Meat Company of Green Bay, WI, recalled 73 cases of Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Beef Nibblets Entree for Dogs pet food due to potential Salmonella contamination.

The affected product was distributed through both independent and online retailers, Chewys.com and Amazon.com. Salmonella can infect both dogs, cats and humans. The contamination was found following the Michigan Department of Agriculture’s collection of a single batch, retail sample that tested positive. There have been no reports of illness.

Click here to learn more about the Vital Essentials recall.

 


 

TruPet

Another recall during the last week of February included a limited recall from TruPet of Milford, OH, for their “Treat Me Crunchy Beef Delight” 2.5 oz pet treats due to possible Salmonella contamination.

Click here to learn more about the TruPet/TruDog treat recall.

 

 


Smokehouse Pet Products

 

On February 19th, the FDA announced a recall of Beefy Munchies dog treats by Smokehouse Pet Products of Sun Valley, CA.  The recall included all sizes and package types (including individual bags, resealable bags and plastic tubs (labeled “Beefy Bites”) due to possible Salmonella contamination.

The recall was issued after routine sampling and testing by the Colorado Department of Agriculture revealed Salmonella in two 4-oz packages.

Click here to read more about the Smokehouse Pet Products Beefy Munchies recall. 

 


Redbarn Pet Products

In early March, Redbarn Pet Products of Long Beach, CA, expanded its original recall (of February 9th) to include all lots of their Bully Sticks under the brand names of Chewy Louie, Dentley’s and Good Lovin’.

The presence of Salmonella was revealed through testing by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. The investigation led to a raw ingredient from a single supplier as the source. The affected products were distributed in pet speciality and grocery retail stores nationwide.

Click here to learn more about the recall and click here to view all 25 recalled products and their images.

 


Raws for Paws

In early February, approximately 4,000 pounds of Ground Turkey Pet food were recalled by Raws for Paws of Minneapolis, MN because of the potential presence of Salmonella.

Both the 1- and 5-pound chubs (sealed plastic tubes) were including in the recall. The affected product was distributed throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and through online mail orders.

Two illnesses were reported in connection with this recall. The recall was issued after testing by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture returned positive results.

Click here to learn more about the Raws for Paws recall of Ground Turkey Pet Food. 

 


Darwin’s Natural Pet Products

Another early February recall involved two Darwin’s Pet Food products (of Tukwila WA):

  • ZooLogics Chicken Meals with Organic Vegetables for Dogs; and
  • ZooLogics Turkey with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs.

Testing revealed the presence of Salmonella. According to Gary Tashjian, the Founder of Darwin’s Pet Products, customers who received these meals were notified directly. Darwin’s Natural Pet Products are sold exclusively through a subscription service directly to their customers.

Just a few days ago, the recall was expanded to include a total of four lots of products. The following products were also added to the recall with the potential of Salmonella and E. Coli (0128):

  • Natural Selections Chicken with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs; and
  • Natural Selections Duck with Organic Vegetables Meals for Dogs.

Click here to learn more about the expanded recall of Darwin’s Pet Food products.

 


Blue Ridge Beef (Dogs & Kittens)

Front Chub package BRB Complete; Back of Chub package with Nutrition InformationAgain, just a few days ago, another recall was issued, this time for Blue Ridge Beef (BRB) of Eatonton, GA. The recall involves one lot of its BRB Complete Raw pet food because of the potential presence of both Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes. The affected product is sold in 2-pound chubs (sealed plastic tubes) and are frozen. The recall only affects the following states:

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • North and South Carolina
  • Tennessee

The contamination was revealed after samples were collected and tested by the FDA.

To learn more about the Blue Ridge Beef recall, click here.

NOTE: On March 2nd, Blue Ridge Beef also issued a recall for one lot of their Kitten Grind Raw Pet Food again for the potential contamination of both Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes. Click here to learn more about this recall.

 


J.M. Smucker Company (Milo’s Kitchen Dog Treats)

Just a few days again, the J.M. Smucker Company issued another recall for two specific lots of Milo’s Kitchen dog treats. The treats potentially contain elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone. Dogs ingesting elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone may exhibit symptoms like increased thirst and urination, weight loss, increased heart rate and restlessness. While these symptoms may resolve themselves once the affected product is no longer fed, prolonged consumption can result in serious vomiting, diarrhea and rapid and/or labored breathing. 

Click here to learn more about the recall and the affected UPC codes.

 


Blue Buffalo Company

Earlier this month, Blue Buffalo (Wilton, CT) issued a recall of one lot of its BLUE Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs because of the possibility of elevated levels of beef thyroid hormones.

Dogs ingesting elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone may exhibit symptoms like increased thirst and urination, weight loss, increased heart rate and restlessness. While these symptoms may resolve themselves once the affected product is no longer fed, prolonged consumption can result in serious vomiting, diarrhea and rapid and/or labored breathing. 

NOTE: Blue Buffalo Pet Food was recently purchased by General Mills (the makers of Cheerios, Haagen-Dazs, Betty Crocker, Pillsbury and Old El Paso.

Click here to read more about the Blue Buffalo recall. 

 


Radagast Pet Food (Cats)

UPDATE: Radagast Pet is expanding their original recall to all varieties of Rad Cat Raw Diet due to potential listeria contamination.

Click here to learn more about the latest, expanded recall and the affected lot numbers.

The Portland, OR company, Radagast Pet Food, Inc., is recalling two lots of their products as of March 20th due to the potential of Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

The two recipes being recalled include:

  • Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Chicken; and
  • Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Turkey.

Listeria monocytogenes poses a risk to both animals ingesting the affected product and humans if they do not thoroughly wash their hands after coming into contact with a contaminated product.

Click here to learn more about the Radagast Cat Food recall and the two lots affected.

 


Steve’s Real Food

Earlier this month, Steve’s Real Food (Cottonwood, UT) issued a recall for its Raw Frozen Dog Food Turkey Canine Recipe after testing positive for Salmonella.

The affected lot (52 cases) involved their frozen 5-pound bags of turkey nuggets. They were distributed to retail pet food stores in the following states:

 

 

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • North Dakota
  • Nebraska
  • New Jersey
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington

To learn more about the Steve’s Real Food recall, click here.


Raw Basics

Another frozen raw pet food issued a recall on March 6th. Raw Basics of Pleasant Prairie, WI, recalled its 5-pound boxes of Tucker’s Raw Frozen Pork-Bison Dog Food for potential Salmonella contamination.

The presence of Salmonella was revealed after testing done by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. The contamination was isolated to one lot of 108 boxes (540 pounds) and distributed to pet specialty retail stores in Minnesota, Georgia, Kansas and Pennsylvania.

Click here to learn more about the Raw Basics recall.

 


An Update on the Deadly Chinese Jerky Treats

It’s happened again, this time in Oklahoma with a 4-year-old Yorkie.

Within hours of eating of chicken jerky dog treats with “all natural farm fresh ingredients” sourced from China, Zoe was dead.

It’s been over 11 years since imported food and treats from China have been harming – and even killing – our pets. Yet the treats still sit on store shelves for unsuspecting customers to buy and feed to their pets.

If you thought someone is looking out and protecting both you and your beloved pets, think again. If you’re looking for obvious information and disclosures about the treats you buy, think again too.

Read ALL the print, especially the tiny print buried on the back of the package (as illustrated below with the treats that killed Zoe, sold at Walmart).

With no answers from the FDA’s years-long investigative research, but with pets still being sickened and dying, become your own best advocate and learn all you can about what you feed your pet. Until safety takes precedent over profits, your pet’s health is in potential danger.

Click here to read more about unsafe Chinese jerky treats.

Click here to read Zoe’s story.

 


 

We try our best to keep our readers informed with the latest recall information (here on our blog and on our Twitter/Facebook pages); unfortunately that’s not always possible. To stay informed with the latest recalls, subscribe to one (we recommend all) of the recall alerts below.

Your pet is counting on you.

Dog Food Advisor

Truth About Pet Food 

American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMA)

US Food & Drug Administration (FDA)

RECALL: Just Food for Dogs

Just Food for Dogs has issued their first-ever recall after a report from a customer of vomiting and diarrhea after her dogs ate their Turducken product.

In a detailed email from Founder, Shawn Buckley, it was confirmed that one batch of Turducken special (made in their West Hollywood kitchen and code dated: WH 11/18/18) did test positive for Listeria. The dogs who were affected were switched to another food and made a full recovery, without veterinarian intervention, within a day.

Why the Recall

The returned Turducken food was tested and subsequently confirmed the presence of Listeria. The source of the contamination has been traced to the human-grade green beans used in the Turducken recipe.

Based on these preliminary results, Just Food for Dogs is voluntarily:

  • Expanding the Turducken recall to all batch dates.
  • Recalling two other recipes containing green beans:
    • Beef & Russet Potato; and
    • Fish & Sweet Potato.
  • Notifying the FDA as the contaminated green beans may also affect the human food supply.

Severe disease from Listeria in dogs is rare. In fact, Listeria is of more concern to humans. Healthy dogs may experience no signs from listeria contamination, but elderly or weakened dogs may experience vomiting and/or diarrhea.

What to do Next

Consumers are urged to properly dispose of any affected product.

Consumers may also email (support@JustFoodForDogs.com) or call (866-726-9509) Just Food for Dogs for an immediate refund. Shawn Buckley can be reached directly at shawnb@JustFoodForDogs.com or 949-378-2927.

 

Source: Truth About Pet Food: Just Food for Dogs Pet Food Recall.

New Year’s Eve and Your Dog

Now that Christmas has moved on, it’s time to give some thought to the upcoming New Year’s Eve celebrations … and your dog. While we humans love the excitement, parties and fireworks, it’s important to realize that not all dogs agree with our enthusiasm!

Last year, we wrote a very detailed post on planning ahead for the New Year’s celebrations in order to help your dog enjoy the time safely and calmly. You can read it here.

This year, we want to focus specifically on fireworks. We are incredibly lucky that our Great Danes actually enjoy fireworks no matter the time of year! They always join us outside on the deck and watch the show over Lake Tahoe. But not all dogs are so placid when it comes to loud noises and bright, unpredictable bursts of light and color.

How does YOUR dog react?

Just like humans, each dog reacts differently to loud noises. (A personal note: after living in a war zone for several years, fireworks were very difficult for me to deal with after returning to the United States. Finally, after many years, I can enjoy them without flinching.)

Remember, your dog’s hearing is ultra-sensitive. According to PetMeds.org:

The frequencies that dogs hear are much higher and lower than what humans can hear. Dogs hear a frequency range of 40 to 60,000 Hz while a human range is between 20 and 20,000 Hz. Because of this, dogs have a difficult time with very loud noises. Sounds that may be acceptable to you can be uncomfortable to a dog.

Is it any wonder that fireworks can rattle even the most tranquil dog?

So, is Your Dog Afraid?

When dogs are afraid, they exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Cowering or hiding
  • Barking or growling
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Clinging to their owners

Changes in Energy are Also Important

Another important fact to remember is that all dogs feel energy. Some energy is expressed in frequencies, waves and vibrations; including light and sound. This is why some dogs become overwhelmed with the onslaught of both the sights and sounds of fireworks.

Options for a Sound-Sensitive Dog

The following are suggestions; always discuss the best option with your own veterinarian. (Note: We are not compensated for any of the suggested products below.)

  • Wear them out with exercise earlier in the day
  • Distract them with play or their favorite toy or bone
  • Provide a “safe” place; a quiet room (close the windows and curtains) or crate
  • Massage
  • Calming Wraps:
  • Play canine-friendly “healing” frequencies or sound therapy
  • Homeopathic Remedies:
  • Aromatherapy/Essential Oils:
    • lavender, chamomile, ylang ylang, valerian, valor and vetiver):
      1. Spray a small amount on your hands and massage your dog (including their chest and paws) or spray some on a bandana and tie loosely around the neck)
      2. Mist your house, dog beds and favorite hiding spots with an oil/water blend

Please Help Us Help Others.

The holidays are a wonderful time for most of us. Families come together and create new, happy memories, eat lots of wonderful food and eagerly open presents.

But for many people, the winter season can be a difficult time trying to stay warm and still have enough food to eat for not only themselves and their children, but also for their furry family members.

Please support your local pantries to help those in need. The simpliest things can mean the most to those who need help. And let us know about the pet pantries in your area so we can add them to our website to help even more people this holiday season.

Email us directly at Bobbie@ColdNosesNews.com, click on the images to email us or leave a message below.

Thank you and Happy Holidays everyone!

Poinsettia … Holiday Friend or Foe?

The holidays are coming! Trees, decorations and beautiful, festive plants are appearing everywhere!

But, if you have dogs in your home, are you hesitant to bring the traditional poinsettia plant into your home?

It’s true that poinsettias have traditionally been considered poisonous to pets.

However, the truth is that they are “non” to “mildly” toxic. Poinsettias are actually more prone to giving your pet a mild rash if they brush against it; or, if they ingest it, just mild-to-no stomach discomfort.

So go ahead and enjoy this gorgeous plant!

Learn more about which holiday blooms and buds are toxic to Fido by clicking here.

Beware the Dangers of Fall for Your Dog.

Ahh, fall is in the air! Beautiful foliage and temperatures that have dropped.

But don’t let down your guard when it comes to protecting your dog from potential autumn dangers, including:

  • Antifreeze
  • Mushrooms
  • Snakes
  • Rodents
  • Compost Piles/Bins

Keep reading to learn how to protect your pup from autumn dangers.

Antifreeze is a Sweet Menace

Antifreeze (an ethylene glycol-based engine coolant) unfortunately offers a sweet smell that attracts curious pets.

A mere 8 ounces can kill a 75-pound dog and as little as half a teaspoon can kill an average-sized cat.

What You Should Do: Use “Low Tox” antifreeze made of propylene glycol instead. While not completely non-toxic, they are less toxic and could mean the difference between life and death if your pet comes across a spill. 

Mushrooms Pose a Natural Toxin

Autumn means mushroom season! While only 1% of them are highly toxic to pets, prevention is always best because that 1% can cause life-threatening problems. (One of the most dangerous is the Amanita phalloides or death cap mushroom, found throughout the United States.) Since the proper identification of mushrooms can be very difficult, prevention is the most effective way to protect your pet.

What You Should Do: Learn which toxic mushrooms grow in your locality and avoid those areas. Also, keep your dog on a leash to protect them.

Contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 immediately if you witness your pet eating a wild mushroom.

Snakes … oh my!

Snakes are busy getting ready for their winter hibernation which means they may be out and about even more with the cooler temperatures.

What You Should Do: Familiarize yourself with the local venomous snakes. Avoid the areas they are typically found; and again, keep your dog on a leash to protect them.

Heat-Seeking Rodents 

Rodents are also hard at work at finding warmer places to call home during the winter months especially indoors. Consequently, this is the season for prevalent use of rat and mouse poisons as people begin to winterize their dwellings. As toxic poisons meant to kill small rodents, if ingested, these same poisons can potentially be fatal for your pets (particularly for smaller dogs and cats).

Another risk of rodenticides is  called relay toxicity.

“In other words, if your dog eats a large number of dead mice poisoned by rodenticides, they can experience secondary effects,” explains Dr. Ahna Brutlag, Assistant Director of Veterinary Services at Pet Poison Helpline.

Also keep in mind: even if YOU are not using rodent poisons, your neighbor(s) may be using them on their property.

What You Should Do: Only use these fatal toxins in places that are inaccessible to dogs, pets and even children and keep your dogs confined to your property.

Composts are NOT Dog-Friendly

Yes, your compost is environment-friendly and waste-reducing, but it might also be dangerous to your dog(s), pets, wildlife and even children.

As the contents of your compost pile or bin break down, dangerous pathogens (illness- or disease-causing agents) and tremorgenic mycotoxins (poisons from molds which can cause tremors or even seizures) are created and can seriously harm – or even kill – your dog and other pets.

Even small ingested amounts can lead to tremors or seizures within as little as 30 minutes to several hours.

What You Should Do:

  • Never compost dairy, grains, nuts, legumes, breads or meats due to their tendency to become moldy.
  • Use tightly sealed and secured compost containers.

Learn more from our post: Psst … Your Compost may not be Dog-Friendly!

 


To learn more about autumn dangers for your dog, go to ASPCA.org and Pet Poison Helpline.


 

Help! My Pet Just Ate Something Bad for Them!

We’re SO excited to be a Featured Blogger on Grandma Lucy’s blog especially in time for Halloween!

Go check out our guest blog and learn:

  • What foods are bad (not “dog-friendly) for your dog.
  • The symptoms your dog ate something bad.
  • What to do if your dog begins exhibiting these symptoms.

 


Thank YOU Grandma Lucy’s for helping to keep our pets safe!


 

Improve Your Health and Sex Appeal: Get a Dog!

You’ve probably heard that a dog is good for your health; both mentally and physically! From giving us a reason to exercise every day (which also lowers your blood pressure and cholesterol), to helping relieve stress and boost our mood, dogs make a real impact on our overall well-being each and every day.

But now, there just might be another reason to get a dog … improving your sex appeal!

Yes, all you single people out there, a dog can be an effective “social tool” in attracting the attention of a potential companion!

In a recent study, 1,210 single pet-owners registered on Match.com (61% women and 39% men) were polled to see how pets influence their dating habits and preferences. The result? Thirty-five percent of women and twenty-six percent of men said they were more attracted to someone if they owned a pet; and women were even LESS likely to to date someone who simply didn’t like pets!

Now, before you rush out and get that K9 ball of fur, be forewarned that not all pets are created woman-888389_640equal! This study also revealed that bigger just might be better when it comes to men’s preferences in the romantic influence of a pet. About twenty-eight percent of the men in the study admitted that if their date’s pet could fit into her purse … that would be a major turn-off!

So while a dog might not be able to make up for a lousy personality, lack of social skills or knock-you-out halitosis, the results do seem to indicate that having a canine friend may help improve your dating chances.


To learn more about the health benefits, go to: “All You Need to Know About Pets Improving Your Health.


Source: “Having a Dog Makes You Sexier, Study Says” on News.Health.com.

K9 Dental Products: What You Must Know

As is typical throughout life, not all things are created equal.

Including the dental products being created and advertised for our beloved family dogs; and what you don’t know could hurt your dog!

Over the next few weeks, Cold Noses News is going to reveal the SEVEN ingredients you NEVER want to find in YOUR dog’s dental product; regardless of what the experts, gurus or even professionals may tell you.

We’ll teach you what names and terms to look for on the label for each ingredient as well as the very real and potential effects each can have on your dog.

Don’t be Fooled

As you search for an effective – and safe – product for your dog’s dental health, don’t be fooled by pretty labels, fancy advertising, “healthy” images or even these buzz words below:

  • 100% Natural
  • All-Natural
  • Organic
  • Safe
  • Healthy
  • Non-Toxic
  • Botanical
  • Vet-Approved
  • Recommended by Vets

Your Dog’s Health Depends on You

Always do your research first to ensure any claims are actually true, for your peace of mind and more importantly, for the well-being of your dog.

Note: the researched information we will be presenting over the next few weeks is only a singular look at each of these seven individual ingredients and does not address the potential for compounded negative effects/reactions when one – or more – of these ingredients are combined.

Also keep in mind, the smaller the dog, the greater – and faster -the adverse toxic reaction(s).

And finally, dogs with pre-existing conditions, compromised health or immune systems could face even greater danger from these ingredients.

So, bookmark this page (or better yet, follow us) and learn about the seven ingredients you never want to find in your K9’s dental product.

Toxic Ingredient #1

So, let’s get started. The Number One ingredient you never, ever want to find in your dog’s dental product is … alcohol.

Some K9 dental products contain as much as 25% alcohol

Bottom line, alcohol is toxic to dogs. All dogs. Always. EVEN when the label says “Natural Derived Alcohol” … naturally derived or not, it’s toxic. Period.

So here’s what you should look for and avoid:

Please share this post (and the ones that follow) with friends, neighbors and family who love and own dogs. Keep your dog safe from dental products (or any products) that contain toxic ingredients.

 

Blue-Green Algae: Safe for Your Dog?

It’s summertime and after a long and challenging winter, the warm temperatures and summer activities feel wonderful!

But, if your dog joins you in your summer activities, it’s important to know what dangers are lurking about to effectively protect them.

In earlier posts, we’ve talked about many of the warm weather dangers waiting for your dog, including:

  • Heartworm and ticks;
  • Mulch and composting;
  • Deadly rattlesnakes driven out of their natural homes due to excessive rain;
  • The most toxic plant to your dog, the Water Hemlock; and
  • The tiny, but deadly foxtails.

Today’s subject is something you also find in the summer; especially in warm, stagnant ponds and lakes with low water flow which may also receive runoff from fertilized fields; namely, blue-green algae. Runoff with residual fertilizer creates an excess of nitrogen and phosphorus in the warm water which leads to an overgrowth of algae, typically called a “bloom” (a floating mat of scum).

Not All Algae is Created Equal

Not all blue-green algae is toxic. Spirulina, a freshwater, blue-green algae, is actually a beneficial whole food supplement (i.e., superfood) for humans and animals. However, in the case of toxic blue-green algae, even a casual encounter presents a life-threatening emergency for dogs and pets.

“Harmful (algae) blooms usually smell bad and resemble pea soup, green paint or floating mats of scum.” (Dr. Karen Becker)

Since it’s practically impossible to determine whether algae is toxic by just looking at it, always err on the side of safety and keep your dog/pet/children and yourself out of all bodies of water where algae is present.

Even dogs wading into the water with blooms can suffer seizures and convulsions; and even breathing in droplets of algae-contaminated air can cause illness.

Symptoms of Blue-Green Algae Toxicity

Blue-green algae produces deadly and toxic compounds which can cause:

  • Vomiting and diarrhea;
  • Lethargy, shock and coma;
  • Excessive panting and salivation;
  • Liver damage and failure;
  • Blood in the stool; or a black, tarry stool;
  • Respiratory tract inflammation and breathing difficulties;
  • Irritation of the skin, eyes, nose and  throat.
  • Nervous system damage; muscle tremors or rigidity; seizures; and
  • Death in dogs;

in as little as 30 to 60 minutes after exposure!

If you suspect your dog/pet has been exposed to blue-green algae, even briefly, immediate emergency vet care is necessary.

Since it’s much easier to avoid algae toxicity than to attempt treatment after exposure, keep your dog leashed and protected from the dangers that lurk in the summer sun and heat.

Final Notes on Blue-Green Algae

Blue-green algae is also harmful (but usually not lethal) to humans causing a rash/reddening of the skin, hives, blistering, runny nose and irritated eyes and throat. Ingestion of this toxic algae can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, throat irritation and muscle pain.

Blue-green algae also poses a danger to horses, cattle, sheep, goats, llamas, cats and birds.


To learn more about blue-green algae:

Foxtails: Tiny but Deadly

They are typically called Foxtails (bushy spikelets or spikelet clusters that resemble a fox’s tail) or Grass Awns (bristle-like fibers). They are present from May through December and abundant after rainy, moist weather (in sidewalk cracks, edges of roads, alongside trails and in pastures).

While found throughout the USA; the types of grasses that produce foxtails are most common in the western United States (west of the Mississippi). Usually, the worst cases are found in California.

Foxtails are also known by other names, including:

  • Wild Barley
  • Cheat Grass
  • Needlegrass
  • Bromegrass
  • Spear Grass

Foxtails are produced once certain types of grasses have gone to seed; and their hardened tip and arrow-shaped barbs pose a real threat to your dog (and cat). To make matters worse, the Whole Dog Journal warns that a single foxtail “is made up of dozens of hard, pointed seeds”  all ready to become easily – and quickly – embedded in your dog.

Foxtails commonly become embedded in the following areas (although they are not limited to just these areas):

  • Ears;
  • Eyes;
  • Mouth;
  • Nose (foxtails can be easily inhaled);
  • Paws and toes; and
  • Genitals and groin area.
  • Long ears and long and/or curly hair are also potential targets for foxtails.
  • But foxtails can also just latch onto your dog’s fur or skin with their barbed seed heads and over time eventually work themselves into your dog’s body; even into vital organs (like the brain, lungs, eardrums and spine) causing irreversible damage and possible death.

Despite their tiny size, the real issue behind foxtails is that the canine body cannot degrade or break down these tough, hard seed heads. Once embedded into the body, they easily travel (burrow) throughout the body (and because of the microscopic barbs, they cannot work themselves back out of the body; they can only travel “forward”).  So what may start out as a simple irritation, an embedded foxtail can lead to a deadly infection that could, if left untreated, lead to death.

Signs Your Dog May Have Embedded Foxtails

  • Body/Skin: Persistent licking or chewing at a specific spot (including the genitals); swelling, abscesses and open sores.
  • Ears/Ear Canals: Incessant scratching or pawing; tilting or shaking of the head.
  • Eyes/Eyelids: Redness, discharge or tears, swelling, inflammation, squinting or pawing.
  • Mouth/Gums/Tongue/Throat: Coughing, retching and/or gagging; difficulty eating and swallowing.
  • Nose: Discharge; bloody nose; excessive, even violent, sneezing; repeated pawing.
  • Paws: Swelling or limping.
  • Unexplained fever, vomiting or difficulty breathing.

Preventing Issues from Foxtails

After being outside (especially in areas where foxtails are common; including open fields, areas of tall grasses and overgrown grassy areas), always check your dog’s:

  • Armpits.
  • Coat/fur.
  • Genital/groin area.
  • Face, ears, mouth and gums.
  • Paws (especially between the toes).

Remove any foxtails you find with tweezers (if it can be easily removed). However, if one is already embedded or the area around the foxtail is red and/or swollen, see your veterinarian immediately for proper medical attention.

If you commonly find foxtails in a certain area of your dog’s body, consider trimming the hair in that area to avoid more foxtails becoming attached. To keep painful and potentially dangerous foxtails out of your dog’s ears, nose and eyes, an OutFox Field Guard is helpful (essentially a mesh bag over the dog’s head that doesn’t affect natural breathing, panting, sniffing and drinking). Protective vests (covering the chest and abdomen) can also help prevent foxtails from attaching to the dog’s body.

To learn more about foxtails:

RECALL: Loving Pets Air-Puffed Dog Treats

Loving Pets, a New Jersey-based manufacturer of pet treats located in Cranbury, is voluntarily recalling a limited number of dog treats for potential salmonella contamination.

The limited recall includes the following products:

  • Loving Pets Barksters: Sweet Potato and Chicken and Brown Rice and Chicken;
  • Loving Pets Puffsters Snack Chips: Apple and Chicken, Banana and Chicken, Sweet Potato and Chicken and Cranberry and Chicken;
  • Whole Hearted: Chicken and Apple Puff Treats.

(For the specific Item, UPC and Lot numbers of the affected products, click here to go to the Loving Pets Products website.)

Salmonella and the Risks

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is also a risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having come into contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products. Symptoms of possible salmonella poisoning in humans include: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. While rare, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation and urinary tract symptoms.

Pets poisoned with Salmonella may exhibit lethargy, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets may only show signs of decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected, but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers of salmonella and infect other animals or humans.

Contact your vet or doctor if you suspect salmonella poisoning for immediate help.

Why the Recall

The potential salmonella contamination was “discovered by the Loving Pet’s internal quality assurance team.”  The contamination was identified to a single finished ingredient supplied to Loving Pets from one of its USA-based suppliers.

According to a Press Release:

“Loving Pets produces its treats in small batches, in order to offer the highest quality and control in safety. To ensure the safety of its products, Loving Pets decided to be extra cautious and recall a wider range of lot numbers so that no possible contaminated product is available on the market.”

According to the Company’s website, no illnesses, injuries or complaints have been reported.

What to do Next

Consumers may return any affected treats to the retailer where the product was originally purchased.

For additional information, consumers may also call Cathy Vesey at 866-599-PETS (7387) or visit LovingPetsProducts.com.


To learn more about the Loving Pets recall, go to:

RECALL: Rawhide Chews: Multiple Brands

Still feeding your dog rawhide chews? Then this recall is for you.

United Pet Group, a division of Spectrum Brands, Inc., is voluntarily recalling multiple brands of packages of rawhide dog chew products (distributed to retail outlets and sold online in the U.S. from their Edwardsville, IL distribution center ) for potential chemical contamination.

All of the recalled dog rawhide chew products have an expiration date ranging from 06/01/2019 through 05/31/2020.

Why the Recall

United Pet Group identified manufacturing facilities (in Mexico and Colombia, as well as a Brazilian supplier), were using a processing aid during manufacturing (a quaternary ammonium compound). While this anti-microbial chemical compound is approved for cleaning food processing equipment, it has not been approved in the U.S. as a processing aid in the manufacturing of rawhide chews for dogs.

There have been very limited reports of pet illness and the primary consumer complaint was the unpleasant smell of affected products. Diarrhea and vomiting were also reported.

Exposure to quaternary ammonium compounds (through direct ingestion) may cause the following symptoms in dogs (depending on the severity, veterinarian treatment may be necesssary):

  • Reduced appetite, and
  • Gastric irritation (including diarrhea and vomiting).

What to do Next

Consumers are urged to properly dispose of any affected product or return it directly to United Pet Group or the retail store for a full refund.

Consumers may also contact the United Pet Group Consumer Affairs Team directly at 855-215-4962 between the hours of 8:00 AM – 11:00 PM Eastern Standard Time with questions or for a refund.

To learn more about the specific brand and product names and associated UPCs involved in this recall, go to:

THE Most Toxic Plant to Your Dog (and kids)

water-hemlock-dogs

(Note: We’ve reposted this article because of the very wet winter and spring (and subsequent flooding), this deceptive-looking plant is flourishing in wet areas throughout North America and Europe. Here’s what you need to know to keep your pets – and children – safe.)


It looks soft, delicate and even beautiful, but this wildflower is one of the most toxic plants your dog (or child) can ingest (even in a small amount); with fast-acting and deadly consequences (within minutes).

Water Hemlock: Pretty, But Deadly

It’s called Water Hemlock and is a member of the carrot family. It typically grows in wet areas like marshes and swamps, damp pastures and along riverbanks, ponds, streams, irrigation ditches, reservoirs and other water edges in both North America and parts of Europe. It’s often mistaken for edible plants such as artichokes, celery, sweet potatoes, sweet anise, or wild parsnip.

Water Hemlock Is But One Name

Water Hemlock is also known by a variety of other names, including:

  • beaver poison
  • poison parsley
  • poison hemlock (with red spots or blotches in the stem)
  • muskrat weed
  • poison parsnip
  • spotted water hemlock
  • western water hemlock
  • cowbane/spotted cowbane
  • bulblet-bearing water hemlock

Symptoms of Poisoning

If ingested, the violent effects of toxic poisoning may become evident within a few minutes (from a toxin called cicutoxin, an aggressive, poisonous stimulant that attacks the nervous system) and include:

  • Drooling
  • Nervousness/agitation/weakness
  • Dilated pupils
  • Seizures and/or twitching
  • Rapid heart rate/difficulty breathing/asphyxiation/choking
  • Coma
  • Death from respiratory paralysis death (occurring between 15 minutes and 2 hours after the first initial signs of poisoning).

While the highest levels of its toxin is found in the roots, all parts of the water hemlock are poisonous and dog lovers should never let their dog get anywhere near it.

A side note, the water hemlock has a strong carrot-like odor which could attract curious dogs (or children). Even if it’s not ingested, touching this plant could give you a rash and smelling or breathing it could cause respiratory issues.

What You Should Do

If you suspect your dog has come into contact with water hemlock, seek immediate emergency veterinary care.  If you suspect a person has been affected, call Poison Control immediately at 800-222-1222.

The More You Know

To learn more about water hemlock and its potential dangers:

Summer and Rattlesnakes .. Protect Your Dog!

Just in case ticks, mosquitos, blue -green algae, composts, mulch and fertilizers don’t pose enough dangers to your dog, now there’s one more warm-weather-K9-danger: rattlesnakes.

While rattlesnakes always pose a potential danger wherever they call home, according to experts, large amounts of rain are now driving the snakes out of their natural homes and into our (dry) ones!

Click here to listen to the story by San Diego News, CBS 8; featuring K9 Resort & Spa in Escondido, CA.

Learn more about the types of venomous snakes and what to do in the event of a snake bite to your dog, click here to read more at PetMD.

To learn about snake aversion training, click here to read an article by Victoria Stilwell.

RECALL: SmallBatch Pets Frozen Pet Food

Smallbatch Pets Inc., of Portland, Oregon, is recalling two specific lots of its frozen bags of 2lb Chicken Blend (for dogs and cats) due to finding salmonella.

The affected products were distributed to retail pet food stores in CA, CO, OR and WA and were sold between February 1st until May 5th, 2017.

The affected lots include:

  • Lot D032
  • UPC: 705105970974
  • Best By Date: 2/1/2018

and:

  • Lot E058
  • UPC: 705105970974
  • Best By Date: 2/27/2018

Salmonella and the Risks

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is also a risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having come into contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products. Symptoms of possible salmonella poisoning in humans include: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. While rare, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation and urinary tract symptoms.

Pets poisoned with Salmonella may exhibit lethargy, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets may only show signs of decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected, but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers of salmonella and infect other animals or humans.

Contact your vet or doctor if you suspect salmonella poisoning for immediate help.

Why the Recall

According to a statement from Michael Vogel of Smallbatch Pets:

“The FDA (under the direction of the CVM) called us and they want us to recall two lots due to finding salmonella. No reported illness to dogs, cats or humans.”

What to do Next

Consumers with these products may return the affected product to the place of purchase for a full refund or contact the company by calling 888-507-2712 or by email at info@SmallBatchPets.com.

To learn more about this recall, go to:

RECALL: Cocolicious Canned Dog Food

Party Animal, Inc., of West Hollywood, CA, is recalling specific lots of two varieties of its Cocolicious Canned Dog Foods because each tested positive for pentobarbital.

Pentobarbital is a drug used to euthanize animals.

The following products are affected by this recall and the company has identified these products were manufactured and distributed in 2015:

  • Cocolicious Beef and Turkey
  • Size: 12 ounce cans
    Lot Number: 0136E15204 04
    Best By Date: July 2019
  • Cocolicious Chicken and Beef
  • Size: 12 ounce cans
    Lot Number: 0134E15 237 13
    Best By Date: August 2019

Why the Recall

According to a statement by Party Animal Pet Foods on their Facebook page:

“On April 13, a retailer in Texas notified us that their customer had presented samples of our Cocolicious Beef and Turkey Lot #0136E15204 04 and Cocolicious Chicken and Beef Lot #0134E15 237 13 to a testing lab (at Texas A&M ), and that the results had tested positive for pentobarbital.”

What to do Next

Consumers with questions may contact the company at 855-727-8926 or by email at info@partyanimalpetfood.com.

To learn more about this recall, go to:

Springtime is Here and so are 5 Hazards to your Dog

Finally the effects of Old Man Winter are melting away and giving way to the beauty and warmer temperatures of springtime! But with the advent of spring, there are also new threats to your dog’s health; and what you don’t know could hurt your dog.

Click here to read our new guest post at Pet Radio Magazine about the five springtime hazards to your dog’s health and how to protect them.

And then please, share it with a friend or two so we can protect our beloved K9 companions!

RECALL: Pig Ears for Potential Salmonella

EuroCan Manufacturing of Ontario, Canada, is voluntarily recalling one lot of its Barnsdale Farms® Pig Ears due to the potential presence of Salmonella contamination.

The products were packaged as individually shrink-wrapped packages in quantities of 6, 12 and 25 under the following brands:

  • Barnsdale Farms®
  • Barnsdale Farms Select®
  • Houndstooth®
  • Mac’s Choice®

The recalled products are all from one Lot (#84) and were distributed throughout the United States and Canada.

Salmonella and the Risks

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is also a risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having come into contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products. Symptoms of possible salmonella poisoning in humans include: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. While rare, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation and urinary tract symptoms.

Pets poisoned with Salmonella may exhibit lethargy, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets may only show signs of decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected, but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers of salmonella and infect other animals or humans.

Contact your vet or doctor if you suspect salmonella poisoning for immediate help.

Why the Recalls

While there have been no reports of illness, the company suspended distribution of the affected products while they, along with the FDA, continue to investigate the source of the problem.  Routine testing revealed the presence of Salmonella in the recalled products.

What to do Next

Consumers who purchased any of the recalled pig ear products (Barnsdale Farms®, HoundsTooth® and Mac’s Choice®), should return them to the place of purchase for a refund. Consumers with questions should contact the Company directly at 888-290-7606 (Monday-Friday, from 9am – 5pm EST).

To learn more about this recall and to see images of the recalled products, go to:

RECALLS: Blue Buffalo and Wellness for Dogs

Blue Buffalo Company is voluntarily recalling one lot of BLUE Wilderness® Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs. The recall was issued because of possible elevated levels of naturally-occurring beef thyroid hormones. The recall only involves the 12.5 oz can with the UPC code of 840243101153.

In addition, WellPet issued a voluntary recall of their Wellness Ninety-five Percent Beef Topper for Dogs also for possible elevated levels of naturally-occurring beef thyroid hormones. The recall only affects the 13.2 oz can.

Elevated levels of the naturally-occurring beef thyroid hormone may affect a dog’s metabolism. With prolonged consumption, dogs may exhibit symptoms like increased thirst and urination, increased heart rate, restlessness and weight loss. Over time, symptoms could increase in severity and include vomiting, diarrhea and rapid or difficult breathing. Studies have shown that symptoms typically reverse as soon as the dog stops eating the affected product.

Why the Recalls

While the Blue Buffalo Company did not receive any reports of illness of dogs from consuming this recalled product, the FDA did advise the Company of a single consumer who reported symptoms in one dog. That dog has since fully recovered.

WellPet says there have been no reports of health problems as a result of feeding this recalled product. The voluntary recall was “done out of an abundance of caution.”

What to Do Next

Blue Buffalo Product: Consumers are encouraged to discontinue feeding this product, dispose of it or return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers may email the Company at CustomerCare@BlueBuffalo.com or call them at 877-227-9587.

Wellness Product: Consumers are encouraged to stop feeding this product and email the Company at WeCare@WellPet.com or call them at 866-201-9072.

To learn more about these recalls, go to:

Blue Buffalo Recall:

Wellness Recall:

RECALL: Blue Buffalo/Blue Wilderness Wet Dog Food Cups

Blue Buffalo has issued a voluntary recall of 17 varieties of their wet dog food products in the USA and Puerto Rico.

The “voluntary market withdrawal” (issued on February 28th) includes Blue Divine Delights (3.5 oz cups) and Blue Wilderness Trail Trays (3.5 oz cups).

Why the Recall?

The recall was issued due to a potential quality issue involving the foil seal on the top of the cup. At this time, there are no reports of any dogs becoming ill from the recalled products.

Which Products are Affected?

Below are the 17 recalled products and their respective UPC number.

BLUE Divine Delights Filet Mignon Flavor in Gravy 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312035

BLUE Divine Delights New York Strip Flavor in Gravy 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312037

BLUE Divine Delights Prime Rib Flavor in Gravy 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312039

BLUE Divine Delights Rotisserie Chicken Flavor in Gravy 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312041

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Filet Mignon Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312043

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Porterhouse Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312045

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Grilled Chicken Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312047

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Top Sirloin Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312049

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Angus Beef Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312051

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Roasted Turkey Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312053

BLUE Divine Delights Pate with Bacon, Egg & Cheese 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312057

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Sausage, Egg & Cheese Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312059

BLUE Divine Delights Pate Steak & Egg Flavor 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312061

BLUE Wilderness Trail Trays Duck Grill 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312071

BLUE Wilderness Trail Trays Beef Grill 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312073

BLUE Wilderness Trail Trays Chicken Grill 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312075

BLUE Wilderness Trail Trays Turkey Grill 3.5 oz. Cup

84024312077

What to Do Next

Consumers are encouraged to stop feeding these products and bring any remaining, affected products to the place of purchase for a full refund.

Consumers can also contact the company with any questions at 1-877-870-7363.

Click here to read the entire statement from Blue Buffalo.

 

 

Don’t Brush off Your Dog’s Dental Health

nose-1031559_640It’s Pet Dental Health Month; do you show your dog regular dental love?

Halitosis (bad breath) – whether it’s human or canine – is often the brunt of some really bad jokes and equally rude gestures! But just like humans with bad breath, your dog’s nasty breath could actually be a symptom of something much more serious going on with their health.

An oral bacterial infection (associated with bad breath) can eventually spread to other parts of the body (through the bloodstream) and cause serious – even potentially irreversible – damage to major organs including the kidneys, liver and heart. Left unchecked, this damage could lead to premature death of your dog.

Tooth Decay & Gum Disease Starts Early

The research is shocking; approximately 80% of all dogs begin to show tooth decay and gum disease/inflammation (gingivitis) by the tender age of 3! The steps below will help prevent K9 dental issues.

Preventative Dental Care

Annual Check-ups and dog-toothCleanings: Get your dog’s teeth (and gums) checked – and cleaned (a treatment called prophylaxis) – at least once a year by your regular vet. Annual check-ups can also catch the early signs of dental problems which could cause – or be caused by – other serious health issues.

Recommended Dental Products: Your vet can recommend the best dental products, treats or diets for your dog and their history. Raw bones (size-appropriate) are a great option for your dog (NO cooked or rawhide bones). Raw bones are also rich in calcium (promoting strong teeth), probiotic bacteria (the “good” bacteria) and enzymes. Probiotic bacteria/enzymes work to maintain healthy bacterial flora keeping harmful bacteria (which cause gingivitis) under control. (ALWAYS supervise your dog when they are chewing bones.)

Regular K9 Dental Care Starts at Home

Periodontal disease begins whendentalspray bacteria combines with food particles and forms plaque on the teeth. Left untreated, plaque hardens into tartar (that yucky hard brown stuff you can’t wipe or brush off). Daily cleaning helps remove these food particles; but even cleaning several times a week can help maintain good dental hygiene and reduce potential issues.

Use a child’s toothbrush, finger brush, single-use pet dental wipe or a natural dental spray (like the one made by Bark5.com). Do use human toothpaste; only use pet-specific/formulated products that do not contain alcohol or the artificial sweetener, xylitol (both are very toxic to dogs).

(Sources: AVMA.org, AAHA.org and CVMA.net)

UPDATED: A Pug Story You MUST Read BEFORE You Feed YOUR Dog.

pug-1522653_1280

FEBRUARY 3RD UPDATE: EVANGERS HAS ISSUED A VOLUNTARY RECALL FOR THEIR HUNK OF BEEF CANNED DOG FOOD. READ MORE AT: .


This is Talula’s story.

Once upon a time (not long ago), Talula’s owner served her and her three pug housemates a meal of Evanger’s Hunk of Beef canned dog food. Within 15 minutes, all four dogs were staggering. By the time they arrived at a local veterinary emergency clinic, all four were “limp.” Three dogs eventually recovered after veterinary intensive care treatment (although one now suffers from seizures).

Talula was not so lucky, she passed away.

This disturbing story was reported by NBC4i.com on January 3, 2017. On that very same day, Evangers directed their distributors to remove all Hunk of Beef canned dog food from their store shelves. (The affected product was manufactured in June 2016 with a Lot Number of 1816E06HB13.)

The Test Results

Tests carried out by the Michigan State University Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health (DCPAH) revealed the dog’s stomach contents tested positive for pentobarbital (a drug used to euthanize animals); and the “feed” (pet food) tested positive for pentobarbital.

The lab report stated:

large quantity” of pentobarbital was found – and “If this sample came directly from a can, this is an urgent matter and needs to be reported to the FDA…””

The family posted this image to their Instagram account on January 29, 2017:

BUT WAIT … It’s MORE than an “Evangers” Issue

Maybe you don’t feed your family dogs Evanger’s Hunk of Beef canned dog food; but there’s STILL room for concern. Here’s why:

“Evangers Pet Food manufactures numerous brands of pet food for other pet food companies (co-packs).

Thanks to Lorin Grow of Furry Face Pet Food Store in Redlands, CA –evangers-pet-foods_35612-300x225 Evangers Pet Food has a very unique lot code stamp on their canned foods.

Only Evanger’s stamps their cans on the rollers meaning their stamps are in a semi-circle instead of just straight on the can. If the lot code stamp on your can of pet food is in a semi-circle (as opposed to a straight line) – you can safely assume the pet food was made at Evangers.”

(Source: TruthAboutPetFood.com; picture of an Evangers code stamp provided by one of the readers of Truth About Pet Food)

To learn more, click here to read the full story at TruthAboutPetFood.com.

RECALL: Frozen Blue Ridge Turkey Pet Food

Blue Ridge Beef has issued another voluntary recall; this time for one of its raw, frozen turkey products due to possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes.

The affected product is sold in 2-lb chubs and can be identified by the manufacturing codes seen in the image below and was sold to retail stores in North Carolina, Florida, South Carolina, and Georgia.

Listeria can adversely affect pets who eat the product and their owners who do not thoroughly wash their hands (or surfaces) after coming into contact with the affected product. (Infected humans will have some – or all – of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. People exhibiting these symptoms should contact their healthcare provider.)

What to Do Next

Consumers are encouraged to immediately stop feeding these products, properly dispose of them or return them to their retailer for a full refund. If pets are displaying any of the symptoms listed above, they should be taken immediately to the vet for proper evaluation and treatment.

Consumers can also email the company at BlueRidgeBeefGA@yahoo.com.

Source: PetMD at https://t.co/dXz6eP4USF.

 

 

Keeping Fido Safe this New Year’s Eve by Planning Ahead

Plan Ahead to Keep Your Dog Safe

Now Christmas has come and gone, it’s time to start planning your festivities to ring in the New Year! With some planning and foresight, you can make New Year’s Eve not only fun and exciting, but also safe for your family dog.

Bringing in the New Year conjures up thoughts of fun parties, sparkling drinks, tasty munchies and exciting fireworks.  But regardless of how you decide to celebrate, also plan ahead for the comfort and safety of your four-legged friend.

Remember both the stress and changes in our daily routines can negatively impact our dogs. Dogs are creatures of habit and when familiar schedules change, they can become anxious. Imagine for a moment, through your dog’s eyes, the sudden barrage of unfamiliar sights, sounds, smells and people associated with New Year’s Eve.  With a little planning, you can help your dog effectively deal with the upcoming New Year celebration.

YOU Know Your Dog Best

Each dog is as different as each human being. Only you know your dog’s limits and the situations they are comfortable in. Can they handle busy situations with strange people and overexcited children? If your dog is not well-socialized with all kinds of people, a New Year’s Eve party is not the time to try socializing them.  If your dog becomes overwhelmed with lots of activity or people, give them a “safe place.”

A “Safe Place” for your Dog is Heavenly

Barking, pacing, sudden changes in behavior,  urinating or defecating in the house, excessive panting, licking, yawning or turning the head away and retreating or hiding are all signs your dog may be feeling anxious. NEVER force your dog to do or accept something when they are showing signs of anxiety; this will only accelerate the discomfort, fear or even potential Give Your Dog a Safe Place to Relaxaggression that could lead to an unwanted bite.

Instead, create a secure “safe place” for your dog where they can relax and observe the festivities from a protected distance. Perhaps a crate with their favorite blanket, toy or bone or a quiet room blocked off with a baby gate. (Leaving your dog outside  and unsupervised is not a good option.)

Using a “safe place” for your dog also offers an additional benefit when it comes to tempting party food and drinks.

Alcohol and Party Foods are NOT Dog-Friendly

Just like us, dogs love sampling those delicious smelling foods and it only takes a second for them to grab and run! So again, a designated “safe place” can keep your dog out of harm’s way when it comes to the party foods and drinks; especially when you’re distracted with hosting and serving your guests.  Alcoholic beverages as well as rich, salty and fatty foods/hor d’oeuvres (including those containing the artificial sweetener, xylitol) are all unhealthy for your dog; and potentially, could even be dangerous if ingested.

Fireworks: Ouch, my Aching Ears!

With a dog’s ultra-sensitive hearing, fireworks can rattle even the calmest dog. The bright, Fireworks are Scary for Many Dogsunpredictable flashes of light can also be frightening and overwhelming for some dogs. Again, each dog reacts differently, so plan ahead for your dog. Are there homeopathic remedies that can help them relax? (Always try them beforehand so you know what to expect.) Would your dog be happier staying somewhere else, away from the fireworks, with someone they know? Could something like a ThunderShirt help them stay calm? Your vet can help you make the right decision for your dog’s comfort and safety.

A Tired Dog is a Happier Dog

One of the best things you (or a trusted dog walker) can do before kicking off the festivities is A Tired Dog is a Happy Dogto spend some extra quality time exercising your K9; a tired dog is a happy (and relaxed) dog!

With just a little planning in advance, your dog can also safely and calmly enjoy the New Year’s celebrations.

Happy New Year Everyone!

RECALL: Frozen Blue Ridge Beef

Blue Ridge Beef is voluntarily recalling two of its frozen products due to potential contamination with salmonella and/or listeria.  The recall includes Beef for Dogs and Kitten Grind and are sold in 2-pound chubs.

Both salmonella and listeria can adversely affect pets who eat the product and their owners who do not thoroughly wash their hands (or surfaces) after coming into contact with the affected product. (Infected humans will have some – or all – of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.)

The recalled frozen products were distributed to retail stores in these states: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and TX.

Why the Recall

The recall was initiated after the FDA received two complaints associated with these products; one involved the illnesses of two kittens and the other complaint involved a puppy death.

Blue Ridge Beef for Dogs      Blue Ridge Kitten Grind

What to Do Next

Consumers are encouraged to immediately stop feeding these products, properly dispose of them or return them to their retailer for a full refund. Consumers can also email the company at BlueRidgeBeefGA@yahoo.com.

To learn more about this recall, the affected Lot and UPC Codes, go to: http://tinyurl.com/hvyd27w.

 

 

BEFORE You Hire that Holiday Dog Sitter …

dogs-1816853_1280

The holidays are fast approaching which means dog owners will be looking for dog-sitters to watch over their furry family members.

But, before you hand over the keys to your kingdom (and K9s), make sure you know exactly what you (and your dog) are getting into! Don’t leave this important decision to the very last minute, you could come to regret it.

Below are some 8 due diligence tips you MUST do first:

  • Did the potential sitter come recommended by a friend or family member? Great! STILL get testimonials from other previous clients.
  • Always set up a face-to-face meeting with you AND your dog to make sure you both feel at ease with the potential dog-sitter. Make sure you’re meeting the actual dog-sitter, not just the owner of the dog-sitting business.
  • Are they acting in a professional manner? Do they offer you a contract that spells out exactly what they will do … and what they need from you as well? Are they are asking specific questions about the kind of care you’re seeking and making notes?
  • Do a trial run; have the potential sitter watch your dog for several hours or a day (at least once or twice) before you leave for an extended period of time. Notice how your dog acts/reacts around them; these are all clues about what you – and your dog – can expect.
  • Do they have the appropriate insurance or bonding to protect you and your property?
  • Do they have current First Aid certification? Ask to see it. Remember, you’re relying on them to protect your dog especially if something unforeseen happens.
  • Ask about any specializations they offer … do they specialize in small breeds? Big or giant breeds? It makes a huge difference with their comfort level and how well they can deal with your specific dog.
  • Does your dog have special needs? Make sure the person you’re looking to hire can comfortably handle those special requests (giving medication or shots, dealing with an arthritic/fearful/blind or deaf dog, etc.).

By taking the time to find and get comfortable with a potential dog-sitter, you will increase the chances of a pleasant and successful experience of bringing a caretaker into your home and your dog’s life.

~~~~~~~~~~

Own a dog business? Let us write K9-exclusive content for you. We make it EASY to give your dog-guardian clients the content they want (building brand awareness and loyalty for your business).

A Yummy, Gummy Paw Treat

gummypawsrecipe

If you’re an avid dog-lover like us (and we’re guessing you are … you are reading this blog after all), you want to do the very best for your canine family member especially with their food and treats.

So, when we saw this yummy, gummy paw treat recipe on PuppyDogPro, we just had to share (because sharing IS caring)!  With just TWO ingredients (what’s NOT to love about that?!), this simple, easy and healthy treat is a dream come true … for YOU and your dog!

Bone appetit!

Gummy Paw Treats

1 cup chicken stock (or beef stock if you prefer)

2 tablespoons or packets of unflavored gelatin

  • In a small pot, bring the stock to a boil.
  • Remove the pot from heat and let it cool for 3 minutes.
  • Whisk in gelatin until no clumps remain.
  • Let the liquid cool off for a few minutes and pour into molds or ice cube trays.
  • Refrigerate for several hours until set. (You could also put them in the freezer for about 90 minutes to speed up the process. If you do freeze them, let them thaw before offering to your dog in order to not damage his teeth. )
  • Serve treats when they are solid, but jiggly (like Jello).

Store treats in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Want them to last longer? You can freeze them for a couple of months.

(Source: PuppyDogPro: Chicken Gummy Paws Dog Treat Recipe)

Is YOUR Dog’s Breed Prone to Obesity?

Even though the official “National Pet Obesity Awareness Day” has now passed; as responsible dog owners, we all need to remain mindful of the importance of keeping our dogs at a healthy weight (for their breed and age) to give them the best possible health and life.

Is YOUR dog’s breed prone to obesity? Check out the graphic below:

dog-breeds-prone-to-obesity

Want to know more about: identifying whether your dog is overweight? How to proactively prevent K9 obesity and receive a healthy treat recipe you can easily make for your dog?

Just fill out the quick form below for a FREE PDF copy of our October newsletter to be emailed to you.

RECALL: CESAR® Classics Filet Mignon

classic-filet-mignon

Today, Mars Petcare US announced a voluntary recall of a limited number of CESAR® Classics Filet Mignon Flavor product. This includes both individual units, as well as, those offered in flavor variety multi-packs.

Consumers are encouraged to discard any affected product or return it to their retailer for a full refund/exchange.

According to the company, “while a small number of consumers have reported finding the plastic pieces; to date, we have not received any reports of injury or illness associated with the affected product.”

To read more about this recall and for the affected Lot Codes, go to: http://tinyurl.com/zkoeb22.

 

 

 

THE Most Toxic Plant to Your Dog

water-hemlock-dogs

It may look soft, delicate and even docile, but this wildflower is one of the most toxic – and fast acting – plants your dog can ingest (even in a small amount).

(It’s also highly poisonous to humans.)

It’s called Water Hemlock and is a member of the carrot family. It typically grows in wet areas like marshes and swamps, damp pastures and along riverbanks, ponds, streams, irrigation ditches, reservoirs and other water edges in both North America and parts of Europe.

Water hemlock is also known as:

  • beaver poison
  • poison parsley
  • muskrat weed
  • poison parsnip
  • spotted water hemlock
  • western water hemlock
  • cowbane/spotted cowbane
  • bulblet-bearing water hemlock

If ingested, the violent effects of toxic poisoning may become evident within a few minutes (from a toxin called cicutoxin, an aggressive, poisonous stimulant that attacks the nervous system) and include:

  • Drooling
  • Nervousness/agitation/weakness
  • Dilated pupils
  • Seizures and/or twitching
  • Rapid heart rate/difficulty breathing/asphyxiation/choking
  • Coma
  • Death from respiratory paralysis death (occurring between 15 minutes and 2 hours after the first initial signs of poisoning).

While the highest levels of its toxin is found in the roots, all parts of the water hemlock are poisonous and dog lovers should never let their dog get anywhere near it.

A side note, the water hemlock has a strong carrot-like odor which could attract curious dogs.

If you suspect your dog has come into contact with water hemlock, seek immediate emergency veterinary care.

To learn more about water hemlock and its potential dangers:

Dr. Oz to Talk About Pet Food

Dr. Oz Logo

This is some great news to see this addressed in the mainstream media!

This  coming Thursday, September 22nd, the Dr. Oz Show will host a segment entitled, “What’s Really in Your Pet Food and Does It Matter?”

 

Thanks TruthAboutPetFood.com for spreading the word (http://tinyurl.com/jhfmrcr)!