Expert Tips for Walking Your Dog

Having trouble walking your dog? Or training a young pup? Here are some great tips from the Whole Dog Journal.

  • No talking on cell phones except in an emergency.
  • Practice makes perfect. Ask for (and reinforce) your dog for loose-leash walking, and polite sits at street corners and when you stop to talk to someone.
  • Use good equipment that is appropriate for your dog (for example, if not well trained, giant dogs probably need more than a flat collar – and retractable leashes are not considered safe, ever). Inspect the fit and condition of all your equipment frequently. Ensure that your dog wears a tag with current information.
  • Pay attention to your dog’s body language. Chances are she will alert you about anything amiss on the street or trail long before you become aware of it. Whether that’s another dog walker approaching, a mountain biker flying down the trail toward you, or a mountain lion trailing you, an early warning can help you manage the situation – but if only you are paying attention.
  • Carry good treats. Professionally trained walkers know that good training is built with top-shelf reinforcements.
  • Manage your dog’s behavior! Don’t assume that it is okay for your dog to interact with every dog and every human you come across. Not only is it rude, but it can also trigger unexpected, and maybe unwanted, reactions.

Read more by clicking here

Treating Your Cat the Healthy Way

Great tips from Pet360.com on treating your cat

Cat owners show cats their love by giving treats as well as affection. While your everyday cat treats are basically empty calories and should be kept to a minimum, there are some special types of cat treats available that will give your cat a bit of supplemental nutrition.

Targeting Your Cat’s Specific Needs

You may be wondering what sort of cat treats your furry friend could possibly benefit from?

  • Weight Control/Loss: If your cat is overweight, look for treats made to be low in fat and calories and high in fiber.
  • Joint Care: If your older cat is slowing down and has trouble getting around, providing him with some extra ingredients for joint care (i.e., glucosamine and chondroitin) is now common practice. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that can also be added to cat treats to help reduce inflammation and soothe painful joints.
  • Dental Care/Bad Breath: Tartar buildup in the mouth can cause some serious halitosis in cats. Cat treats in this category have special chemicals or textures designed to help break down plaque and tartar. This can help reduce the amount of bacteria in your cat’s mouth, and thus the offensive odor.
  • Skin Health/Hair: Cats that have dry, flaky skin and rough, brittle hair can benefit from added omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in their daily diets. These fatty acids can come from flaxseed, fish oil, or other natural sources.
  • Digestive Health: If your cat has issues with a touchy digestive tract (irritable bowel or colitis), providing some extra fiber and/or beneficial probiotics/prebiotics might help to balance things out. Some ingredients you might see in these kinds of cat treats include fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS), yogurt, chicory, Brewer’s yeast and beet pulp.

Advantages/Disadvantages of Functional Cat Treats

While these functional ingredients can certainly provide some benefits, there’s always a chance of giving your cat too much of a good thing. Even though these cat treats are considered “healthy” and do provide added nutrition to your cat’s diet, it is best not to overdo it. Be sure to read the package to find out the correct amount to give based on your cat’s weight and consult your veterinarian if you have any concerns about your cat’s health.

We have several cat treats and cat food that fit perfectly to each of the above cat needs. Stop in and chat with one of our friendly staff members today!

 

Barklogic – Coming to the Barkery!

To continue the theme of new items from our recent rip to the Global Pet Expo, we’re bringing in an amazing new line for your dog!

On your next visit, check out Barklogic – the logical choice for pets. Natural, safe and effective products for dogs.

Not only will we carry their all-natural food, but you can also try out their shampoos, which feature the following:

  • Pesticide Free
  • SLS/SLES or Sulfate Free
  • Paraben Free
  • Formaldehyde Free
  • Phthalate Free
  • DEA Free
  • PEG Free
  • Triclosan Free
  • Stress Free
  • Made In The U.S.A.
  • 100% Plant & Mineral Based

Stop in and see us to learn more about Barklogic today!

New Products Coming Soon!

We’ve just returned for the Global Pet Expo, and we’ve got lots of great new products to share with our customers!

Over the next several months, be on the lookout for “New Product Spotlight” – highlighting a great new item for your four-legged pal.

Here are just a few of the awesome products to look for over the next month at our store:

Kanberra – Airborne Tea Tree Oil, an all natural air purifier. Perfect for homes with cats and general odor neutralization. Check out their video here.

Cycle Dog Toys – Made from a blend of High Durability rubber and post-consumer recycled rubber from bicycle inner tubes. Cycle Dog Ecolast toys are the first molded pet toys made from post-consumer recycled materials.

Alzoo – Natural flea repellent for dogs made from almond oil. An easy way to protect your dog over a long period against external parasites. No insecticides are used.

Stop in an visit us today and check out these new items – there’s something for every pet owner!

FREE BATH & More for Newly Adopted Pups!

Introduce Your Newly Adopted Friend to the Barkery!

2014-02-21_1159

Before you head out, be sure to pick up a Canine Can! Valued at $75, our Canine Cans are just $14.99 and are loaded with coupons good for:

IMG_0890

  • One free self-serve pet wash
  • One free nutritional consultation
  • One free pet ID tag
  • One free nail trim
  • One free small bag of food
  • One free tooth brushing
  • $5 off any pet accessory

New Pet Owner? Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid

An abridged version from Real Simple Magazine

Mistake 1: Buying or Adopting a Pet Spontaneously

Why this is a mistake: That doggie in the window may be darling, but he might not be the right fit for your family or lifestyle.

How to avoid it: Fully inform yourself before you bring home a pet. Every dog or cat has its own needs, some of which are specific to the breed. If there’s a breed that interests you, read up on it (try the website of the American Kennel Club, at akc.org, or the Cat Fanciers Association, at cfainc.org), talk to owners, and get to know someone else’s Border collie or Persian.

Mistake 2: Skipping Obedience Training

Why this is a mistake: Bad habits can be difficult to train out of a pet. So unless you have the know-how to school an animal, you need the help of a pro.

How to avoid it: Even before a puppy starts formal training, teach him simple commands, such as sit and stay. A puppy can begin formal training at eight weeks (and ideally before 12 weeks), after he has had his shots. “Between the ages of 8 and 16 weeks, puppies readily absorb information about the world around them,” says Andrea Arden, author of Dog-Friendly Training ($13, amazon.com).

Mistake 3: Being Inconsistent With the Rules

Why this is a mistake: If one child lets Fifi on the bed and another punishes her for it, the animal will be confused. Bad behavior is inevitable.

How to avoid it: Make sure everyone in your household knows―and follows―the rules, says Arden. “You want your dog to sit before eating a treat? You don’t want your kitten to pounce on your hands? Then figure out a system that will help your pet succeed.”

Mistake 4: Dispensing Too Many Free Treats

Why this is a mistake: Treats lose their training value if your pet gets them for no reason.

How to avoid it: “Think of treats as currency given to a pet to reward good behavior,” says Marty Becker, a veterinarian and a coeditor of Petconnection.com. Assign each type of treat a value, and pay according to how well your pet behaves.  “But it’s important to not pay off the good behavior all the time,” Becker says. “That way, your dog will always hope he might get that piece of bologna, and he’ll eventually perform without seeing a treat.”

Mistake 5: Neglecting to Socialize Your Pet

Why this is a mistake: Pets that aren’t exposed to a variety of animals and people at a very young age can develop fears and aggressive behavior.

How to avoid it: Introduce your pet to adults, kids, animals, and environments so he’ll take every novelty in stride. It’s optimal for a pet to start the process before you bring him home, since the critical socialization period is early in life. “For a dog, it’s between the ages of 3 and 12 weeks. For cats, it’s between 2 and 8 weeks,” says Nicholas Dodman, director of the Animal Behavior Clinic at the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, in North Grafton, Massachusetts.

Mistake 6: Skimping on Exercise

Why this is a mistake: Pets have pent-up energy that needs to be unleashed through physical activity. Otherwise it will be channeled into barking, jumping, or even hostile behavior.

How to avoid it: “Walk your dog at least twice a day for a minimum of 30 minutes each time,” says Cesar Millan, host of The Dog Whisperer, on the National Geographic Channel. “To your dog, that’s a primal activity―birds fly, fish swim, and dogs walk.” Pamela Reid, vice president of the ASPCA’s Animal-Behavior Center in Urbana, Illinois, recommends that dogs get at least 40 minutes of aerobic exercise daily. With a cat, “before and after work, give her 10 to 20 minutes of playtime,” says Reid.

Mistake 7: Neglecting to Keep Your Pet Mentally Active

Why this is a mistake: Bored pets are more likely to get into trouble.

How to avoid it: Give your pets something to do. For a dog, that can mean having him hunt for food. Place a meal or treats in spots around the house for him to sniff out, or “feed him out of a food-dispensing puzzle toy instead of his bowl,” says Andrea Arden. Keep a cat engaged with simple amusements, like a toy mouse dangling from a string.

Mistake 8: Leaving a Pet Alone for Too Long

Why this is a mistake: A lack of proper companionship can lead to separation anxiety and destructive behaviors.

How to avoid it: “Don’t leave a puppy alone for eight hours,” says Reid. Hire someone to watch him or drop him off at a doggie day-care center. Your puppy will need to learn how to be alone for a few hours each day, however, so “teach him to self-pacify almost immediately,” says Andrea Arden. Put him in a crate (or leash him to a stable object) a foot or two away from you, then gradually increase the distance over the course of a week. Then make sure that he spends escalating amounts of time alone in his crate or confined to a room.

Mistake 9: Failing to Make Your Home Pet-Friendly

Why this is a mistake: A cat without a proper litter box will just use the carpet. A dog without a cozy bed will end up on the couch.

How to avoid it: Location is key with a litter box. “A cat doesn’t want to travel a long way to go to the bathroom any more than you do,” says Mieshelle Nagelschneider, a feline behaviorist and a consultant at the Cat Behavior Clinic, near Portland, Oregon. Place litter boxes (one per cat, if you own a few, plus one box they can share, says Moore) in quiet areas throughout your home. Dogs are far less persnickety about where they relieve themselves, but do them the favor of regularly picking up the poop in the backyard. Cats and dogs also need spots where they can cuddle up and feel safe. “A dog needs a crate like a teenager needs a room,” says Dodman.

Mistake 10: Punishing Your Pet

Why this is a mistake: You might think Chewie knows you’re screaming at him because he ate the loaf of bread on the counter, but he won’t connect your behavior with his action.

How to avoid it: Never physically punish your pet; he’ll just learn to fear you. It’s OK to startle a pet out of a behavior, but only if you catch him in the act. Command him with a firm “No!” or “Down!” and he’ll connect the reaction with what he’s doing and learn that it’s not OK. Otherwise, the punishment should come from the environment.

The Raw Food Diet – For Cats

If you have a cat that’s suffering from an ongoing ailment, a senior cat that isn’t as energetic as he used to be, or maybe you’ve just adopted a new kitten – now is the time to consider the benefits of a raw diet for your feline.  

Linda Zurich, author of the “Feeding Cats Raw” shares some wonderful tips and information on her site. 

Cats Are Carnivores
Many of us, although we may have had cats as pets for most if not all of our lives, have failed to realize one very important thing about them – the fact that all cats are, by their very nature, born carnivores. Essentially this means that the nutrition they require to thrive must come from the meat, organs and bones of the bodies of other animals. And because of the cat’s particular anatomical and physiological design, the most ideal and natural way for them to consume that flesh and bone is in its raw state.

Key Causes of Chronic Illness
So is it any wonder that carnivorous companion animals that consume nothing but an unnatural diet of cooked, over-processed canned and kibbled products their entire lives may well suffer some significant health complications as a result? And when such inferior, inappropriate diets are compounded by regular applications of things like toxic pesticides in the form of flea, tick and heartworm medications, combined with the over-administering of vaccines, which often do more harm than good, a picture begins to emerge illustrating some of the key reasons why there is such an explosive epidemic of chronic degenerative disease occurring in today’s domesticated pet population.

Cats Are What They Eat

Just as is the case with human beings, the role diet plays is without a doubt key to any animal’s good health. And when it comes to cats, looking to the way Mother Nature herself has been feeding felines for eons, and providing them with a diet of whole raw foods, is surely the most natural and healthy approach we can possibly take.

Raw Cat Food at the Barkery

If you do decide that the raw diet is something you’d like to try for your cat or dog, please stop in and visit with us. We have an excellent selection and can help you find the right food for your pet.