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Archive for December, 2010

Dog Travel New Year’s Resolution

Author: MayaAndPierson
December 31, 2010


If you and your dog are tired of being cooped up for the winter, it is time to get up and get out.  I know it is cold, but if your dog likes snow, he will love a snow day at the dog park.  Or just take him to the park with the kids for a little snow sledding.  But if you are not for spending time outdoors, go to a Starbucks drive through, get a hot coffee, and ask for a buttered croissant and give your dog a piece or two.  A trip to a pet store to look at all the dog toys would be fun too!

The benefits of traveling with your dog are many.  First, your dog will learn to be a better traveler.  Second, your dog gets more socialization and the more socialization, the better he gets with other people and other pets.  Third, the more your dog goes out, the more exercise he gets.  And finally, the better he gets at riding in the car, the more likely you are to take him on long road trips instead of leaving him at a boarding kennel.

Wherever you travel with your dog this year, be sure you travel in safety.  Have your dog wear a dog seat belt.  If he is not used to wearing a dog seat belt, take small trips like to Starbucks or pet stores or dog parks.  The more he rides with his dog seat belt on, the more he will get used to it and be ready for the long haul.

Have fun this year and travel safe!

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Travelin’ for a Country Christmas

Author: MayaAndPierson
December 28, 2010


We drove to Texas to see my dad and step-mom for Thanksgiving so we drove to Missouri to see my mom and step-dad for Christmas.  Dad was a 12 hour drive but mom was just 5 ½ hours.  You would think that because this drive was shorter, it would be easier.  But it was snowing at least half of the way.  Thankfully, the roads were clear for the most part.  We just had to drive a little more cautiously.

Once again, we took Sephi and Maya with us.  And once again, it was a long and boring trip for them.  They wore their dog seat belts, of course.  It was also a little warmer for them since we had the heater on the whole way.  Boy were they thirsty when we arrived in Licking, Missouri.

We had less issue with the dog hair.  But not because it was a shorter trip; I brushed them every day for the week prior to the trip.  By the time we got home, there was hardly any dog hair in the car to clean up.  It was great!

Sephi and Maya loved their time in the county.  They especially loved the snow.  I made a small little snowman which Maya tried to eat.  The photo above is of my mom’s dog, Rocky, and a snowman.

Learned a new trick to keeping dog hair to a minimum, enjoyed playing in the snow, and ate a delicious holiday meal.  All-in-all, it was a great Country Christmas!  I hope yours was great too.  We’d love to hear about your Christmas with your pets.

(One more thing I’d like to say about the trip to Licking, Missouri – Maya did not have her Licking license but that did not stop her from licking!)

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You better not whine, you better not cry.
You better not bark, I’m telling you why.
Santa Paws is coming to town.

Have a happy tail-wagging Christmas from
Pet Auto!  The discount code, holidaypet,
works year around.  Get 15% off at Pet Auto
this Christmas or any other day of the year.


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December 23, 2010


It’s that time of year for travel.  For Thanksgiving you may have gone to visit your parents.  So for Christmas you may be going to visit your spouse’s parents – or vise verse.  Whether the drive is two hours or twelve, it’s cold out there so make sure you travel for warmth.

Perhaps your car heater works so you think you don’t need a blanket for your dog.  But what if the cold weather has an adverse effect on your vehicle and you can’t get it started?  What if your car gets stuck in the snow and you are stranded for long hours?

Having car trouble any time of year is no fun.  Depending on where you are traveling to and how isolated the roads are, having car trouble in winter can be dangerous.  You could have trouble getting a signal on your cell phone.  Your cell phone battery could die.  And it is deathly cold outside.  So be sure that your travel essentials include lots of blankets for every member of your family.

Travel with your dog in safety and have a wonderful and Merry Christmas!

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December 18, 2010


This is the time of year to give and to help those in need.  When you donate your time, belongings, or money to children and people in need this year, don’t forget that there are animals in need too.  Animal shelters get overloaded right after the Christmas holidays so anything you donate now will help.

Why are animal shelters overloaded after Christmas?  Because people give pets as gifts and, more often than not, it doesn’t work out.  Also, pets sometimes get out and get lost during the craziness of visiting families or the going in and out for holiday shopping.  Donate dog food, blankets, dog toys, or money to your local animal shelter.  Do it for yourself.  Or donate on behalf of someone else as a gift.

Take care of your pets when you travel and help pets in need and have a happy tail-wagging Christmas!

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ID Your Dog this Holiday Season

Author: MayaAndPierson
December 15, 2010


This is a busy time of year.  Despite the cold, you are going out for shopping more than usual.  Perhaps you are even doing more volunteer work this holiday season.  You are out doors putting up Christmas decorations.  And you are visiting family and friends more.  During this crazy time, you can lose track of things.  You might forget to close the front door all the way, or the front gate.  And out Rover goes to do some visiting of his own.

Or perhaps you are visiting family and friends and taking Rover with you.  Other people may not be used to closing your parent’s front gate or making sure Rover doesn’t get out.  Rover is in unfamiliar territory which makes him more inclined to go check out the neighbor’s Christmas decorations.

With these things in mind, it is very important that Rover is wearing his dog tags.  Be sure Rover’s dog tag information is up to date and that the information has not worn off with wear and tear.  Make sure his dog tags are secure on his collar.  Replace the metal ring the dog tag is attached with if it is bent or rusty.

Dog tags or dog collars can sometimes still come off.  So you may want to also consider microchipping for your dog.  It is super easy for your vet to do and takes just a few seconds.  It is no more painful to Rover than it is for him to get his vaccinations.  Microchipping is also fairly inexpensive –about $25-$40 per year.  If your dog is microchipped, make sure the contact information on the scan is accurate.  And if not, call the company which logs the microchipped information and have your name, address, and/or phone number updated.  Add emergency contacts as well.

Don’t let your dog get away from you this Holiday Season.  Whether your dog stays home or your dog travels with you, make sure he is always carrying his identification.  Dog tags and microchipping will increase your pet’s chances of getting back home in time for the holidays.

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December 12, 2010

You may have seen our video, “How to Put on a Dog Car Harness”.  It is a pretty good video and has hopefully helped people put the dog car harness on their dogs.  But we had a wonderful customer call last week who needed help how to size the dog car harness.  So we put together a quick video for her.  It was a last-minute thing so it is not as professional as the other video but it does the trick.  Check out the video and watch to the very end where Sephi makes a cameo.

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Give Your Pet the Gift of Love

Author: MayaAndPierson
December 9, 2010


Pet travel safety supplies to keep your pet safe is a gift both to you and to your pet.  Some dogs really love their pet car seats.  Dogs may not care too much for the dog car seat belts, but if motivated properly they can learn to love it.  Sephi and Maya love their dog seat belts.  To them, the dog seat belts mean they get to go somewhere in the car.  And that is a special treat.

Pet car seats come in all sorts of types, styles, colors, and sizes.  They are better for smaller dogs and some pet car seats may even work for medium-sized dogs.  The two basic types of pet car seats are the kind which hang from the headrest of the car and the kind which sit firmly onto the seat.  Both types are secured either with straps or with the seat belt of the car.  And both types have clips which clip onto the back of your dog’s harness.

Dog car seat belts also come in various types, styles, colors, and sizes.  The two basic types of dog car seat belts are the kind which buckles directly into the seat belt of the car or onto the latch-bar of the car and the kind which uses the seat belt of the car which goes through a loop on the dog seat belt harness.  The styles vary from basic to slightly padded, to well padded.

Pet travel safety supplies are also great gifts to give before the holidays when you may be traveling.  Let your pet travel with style, safety, and comfort this Holiday Season.

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December 6, 2010


Are you traveling a long distance for the holidays?  If so, you may be trying to decide what you should do with your dogs.  Should you take them with you, put them in a boarding kennel, leave them in the care of a friend or neighbor, or hire a pet sitter?  Perhaps you have tried one of these methods and they did not work out for you.  Maybe one of these options is not available.  Or perhaps one of these options is out of your budget.  If you are having some trouble deciding, consider the following advantages and disadvantages of each option.

Take Your Dog With You
Obviously this has the biggest advantage is that you know your dog will be cared for.  You will also be able to enjoy your Holiday with your best friend.  But if you are flying, that could be a big disadvantage in both cost and comfort for your dog.  Flying can be very traumatic for a dog – especially if they are bigger dogs which have to be put in the cold and dark cargo area of the plane.  Weather can also be an issue because animals are not allowed to fly in extreme hot or cold weather.  And cold weather is a big likelihood this season.  If you are traveling by car, consider how your dog travels in the car.  Do they get car sick?  Are they afraid of riding in the car?  Also, you will want to make sure your pet rides in a pet car seat or is wearing a dog seat belt.

Boarding Kennel
Most boarding kennels provide excellent care.  You will want to visit them before-hand to make sure.  Perhaps even consider a boarding kennel which was the new web cams so that you can see for yourself how your dog is doing.  An obvious disadvantage is the cost.  Many boarding kennels charge a flat fee for boarding, day play, and special attention.  But some boarding kennels charge extra fees for this service.  Even boarding kennels with a flat fee can be expensive.  In my area, it is about $25 per day so four days gone for the holiday is $100. Another disadvantage of a boarding kennel is illnesses which sometimes tend to frequent such facilities.  A boarding kennel may have the cleanest facility around but with so many dogs, the chances of your dog catching an airborne illness increases.  Be sure to select a boarding kennel which requires all dogs to get bordetella shots.  Also consider your pet’s temperament.  Some dogs, like my dog Sephi, would hate a boarding kennel.  Putting them in a place which they don’t like could cause more stress and in turn make them more susceptible to illness.

Hire a Pet Sitter
If your dog won’t like a boarding kennel, they may do better being left in the comforts of their own home.  A hired pet sitter can come by 2 to 3 times per day for feeding, walking, affection, and play time.  However, pet sitters can cost as much as a boarding kennel.  Also, if your dog craves attention, the limited visits of a pet sitter may not be enough.  And since a pet sitter does not visit as often, they may not notice any illness or depression issues.

Enlist a Friend
Having your friend or neighbor take care of your dog is a good advantage expense-wise.  It can also be a good alternative for dogs who don’t like boarding kennels.  And a dog who stays with someone they know and trust will be less likely to get depressed.  But finding a friend or neighbor who is going to be able to care for your dog over the holidays may be difficult.  Many people are traveling this time of year.

When I traveled to Oregon one holiday, my biggest concerns were expense and the temperament of my dogs.  We were going to fly to Oregon and taking the dogs was not an option due to cold weather.  Not only that, Sephi has flown before and hated it so I did not want to subject her to that again.  So my only options were boarding kennel, hire a pet sitter, or enlist a friend or neighbor.  Luckily I had a friend who could take one dog, but she couldn’t take both.  Since Sephi doesn’t like boarding kennels, I decided Sephi could stay with the friend.  Since Maya loves to play with other dogs and we had a good boarding kennel which gave all the dogs an all-day play session, I decided to board her.

Be sure that you also consider your dog’s health temperament when making a decision.  Their happiness and well-being is far more important than accumulating a little more holiday expenses.  Take your dog with you when you can.  Try to enlist a friend or trusted neighbor if you can’t.  And if neither is available, budget for a boarding kennel or pet sitter.

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Winter Pet Travel Check List

Author: MayaAndPierson
December 3, 2010


Are you traveling by car with your pet this holiday?  It’s cold out there so be sure to bring winter essentials along with other everyday pet travel supplies and emergency supplies.  Use our checklist to make sure you have all your winter pet travel supplies:

___ pet crate
___ pet car harness or kennel straps for pet crate
___ pet food
___ drinking water
___ food bowl
___ water bowl
___ blankets
___  pet bed

___ leash
___ collar
your pet is wearing his tags which are up to date and readable
___ veterinary information
___ pet’s medication
pet first aid kit
___ pet
pet waste disposal bags

Pet travel in winter can be more difficult in colder weather.  Road conditions can be more dangerous so it is more important than ever that your pet not be a distraction in the car.  Keep your pet in a pet crate or have them wear a pet car harness.  If a pet crate or pet car harness just won’t work for your pet, you can get a pet car barrier to keep them in the back seat.If you are in a car accident or get stuck in the snow, call for help and cuddle up with your pet under a blanket for warmth.  If you are stuck in a high traffic area and expect help soon, keep your car on and your heater going.  If you are stuck in an isolated area, run your car and heater sparingly as needed.  Unless you know for sure that help is nearby, you should stay in your car.

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