Eyes Up and Pay Attention!

This topic will usually get me a little riled up. One weekend I saw someone walking their dog (no big deal, right?). The person had their phone out and nose down whilst walking. The big reason why this bothers me is because the dog walker was not very aware of her surroundings! Any number of things could have happened! her dog could have picked something up and eaten it, pooped without her picking it up, another dog could have approached without it’s owner, a child could approach the dog without permission, the dog could take off running after something - or she could have been assaulted.

Awareness of your surroundings is not only beneficial for you and your pets, it’s also critical. Remember, you are the one who has the authority to grant permission for someone to say hello/get close to your pet and you are the authority that will and can keep them from harm.

In my experience (mostly with small dogs), the pet is shy when meeting people. This is usually brought on by other people picking this dog up when it didn’t want to be (and as a result, possibly being dropped). In these cases, it’s important for the pet owner to be the advocate for the pet and to physically get in-between the pet and the other person. Hopefully, the other person will respect you and your pet enough to ask if they can approach your pet. From there you can say yes, but please go slow or you can always say no.

Granted, if you have a pet that feels the purpose of the human race is to give them loads of pets and attention – then this isn’t as big of an issue. However, as the pet guardian – you still want to let the other person know about your pets more gregarious nature.
There are a lot more factors that go into being aware of your surroundings. It seems like nowadays everyone’s nose is down and their phones are out. Please folks – when you are out with your pet, keep your eyes up and the phones away. Your attention to and with your pet goes towards strengthening the bond between you.

Strengthening the bonds between you and your pet? That’s for a whole other blog post. But for now, please – pay attention.

Keeping your Furry Family Members Happy During Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time of gratitude, feasting and usually family or large crowds. Here are a few tips to keep you beloved animal companion(s) happy and safe during this time:

Keep all of the food on the table. Begging can become problematic down the road and most foods can’t be processed well by your pets digestive system.

Let them have their own space if they are stressed. Most pets will run away to a different room if they are stressed or overwhelmed by too many people. Let them have their own space and give them something to chew, such as a stuffed frozen Kong or toy.

Keep all garbage away. If you want to keep your pet our of trouble and prevent a medical emergency (swallowing bones or excessive sugars or fats) keep the garbage secured and away from prying noses!

For a more detailed list of what your pet should and shouldn’t have, here is an article from the AVMA on keeping your pet safe and happy during Thanksgiving.

Have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!