Petdoors Social Media- Helping find homes for disadvantaged animals

Love Pinterest? So do we. At Pet Doors, we are excited about connecting with our valued customer base via social networks. We also value our local community and strive to help disadvantaged animals find loving homes. In the spirit of bringing both of these together, we have launched our first ever Pinterest fundraiser, Repin to Rescue. Continue reading

Keep Your Cat Fit with These Easy Tips

keeping cat healthy

Published studies have shown that more than half of the pet population is overweight. Keeping cats fit can be challenging, since they’re mostly kept indoors and they love to sleep the day away. While it is okay to let them have their rest, exercise is just as important. Their sleepiness, combined with weight gain after being “fixed,” can turn many indoor cats into true “fat cats.”  Continue reading

A Dog’s Happiness and Health Go Hand in Hand

You’ve heard it a million times, and for good reason, a dog is man’s best friend. Our furry friends are always there for us, providing companionship, and friendship, and undying loyalty unlike any other. This is a two way street, as intelligent and instinctual as dogs are its important for us to realize dogs depend on us for their wellbeing. It’s our responsibility to reciprocate that love, to show our companionship and affection and give them a wonderful, happy life.

An Active Dog is a Healthy Dog

As with humans, a key part of being happy is being in good health and it is our responsibilities as pet owners to maintain our pet’s good health.

Dogs get bored, and when dogs get bored you end up with pillows gutted, furniture chewed up and your signed copy of The White Album lying in pieces on the floor. A great way to fight against a bored dog is through physical activity. Just like with humans daily exercise is crucial for a healthy dog. Exercise strengthens their heart, entertains them, and keeps them stimulated. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), an active dog is less likely to be destructive, less likely to bark incessantly, and will be more social to humans and other animals.

The level of physical needs will depend on the breed of dog you have, it is important before getting a pet to make sure to research their needs and see if their required level of physical activity fit your lifestyle. Some ideas to exercise your dog include:

  • Take the scenic route.
    • The ASPCA suggests at least 30 minutes of exercise per day a good way to get it is to take them out on a walk, not only is it great for your pet but it can be a great de-stresser for you too.  
  • Take your dog to the dog park.
    • Dog parks can be doggie heaven, not only do they get the exercise they need but also get to interact with other dogs and stimulate that need for socializing
  • Swimming
    • Swimming can be a much needed release for your dogs. It is a great aerobic exercise and can help them cool off during those hot summer months. Swimming however isn’t something all dogs enjoy, so slowly introduce them and have patience.

Obviously this list is not exhaustive, there are millions of things you can do to ensure your dog is getting the exercise they need. The important thing is that they are getting it, even when you’re not around and a pet door is a great solution to give them free reign of coming in and out. Install it in a window (https://www.petdoors.com/pet-doors/window-pet-doors.html) a door (https://www.petdoors.com/pet-doors/pet-doors-for-doors.html)  or a wall(https://www.petdoors.com/pet-doors/dog-doors-for-walls.html). It keeps them from getting bored, allows them to come and go as they please, and reduces the risk of any accidents indoors.

Social Life

Dogs love being social, a happy dog is a social dog

Dogs, like humans, are social animals, they thrive on stimulation and interaction and one of the most impactful things you can do for your dog’s health is teaching them to be social. This starts at a young age, the more they interact with dogs, other animals, or humans, the more comfortable they will be in those situations.

Slowly introduce them to others, both humans and animals, get them acclimated to being around others and their lives will be so much more enriched.

A well acclimated dog opens up so many more doors for you and your pet, you will be able to go to pet friendly stores and restaurants without your dog panicking or becoming aggressive. You will give them the opportunity to make friends by taking them to the dog park and not have to worry about your dogs inability to socialize. You will be giving your dog a much higher quality of life if they know how to interact with others.

Dieting & Care

We all love to reward our good boys, we have the tendency to show them love with snacks and treats and while these are good ways to show a job well done, we can get a bit carried away with the treats and that can lead to health and weight issues.Monitoring their weight with a healthy diet is a great way of reducing risk of disease.

A dog that is 10%-20% above their ideal weight is considered overweight, while over 20% is considered obese. Obese dogs are more likely to develop health problems like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Remember that dogs do not have the same metabolism as us, and many humans foods can cause cause problems for your dog.

Some foods you should avoid include:

  • Chocolate
  • Grapes
  • Raisons
  • Avocados
  • Nuts
  • Alcohol

A good habit to get into is to stop giving your dogs leftovers from your table, not only do you decrease the risk of them consuming food that’s bad for them but you also teach them to not beg for food while you are eating.

A balanced diet isn’t easy, there are a lot of factors that go into a well balanced diet. It varies on the breed, size, and age, but a good diet is a crucial part of maintaining a healthy dog.

Signs of Good & Bad Health

At the end of the day, no one knows your dog better than you and monitoring their behaviour, level of activity and appearance are good ways to measure the health of your pup.

  • Skin: Healthy skin should not have scabs, it should be smooth, no flakes or red areas
  • Coat: Consistently check your pets coat or signs of fleas or ticks. Black fuzz can be flea droppings.
  • Mouth: Their mouth should not have any sores, their gums should be firm and pink or sometimes black depending on the breed.
  • Eyes: Mucus and teary eyes are normal but they should not be excessive. Eyes should be clear and the whites should not look yellow.

If you notice that your dog is acting strange,is vomiting or has prolonged diarrhea, difficulty breathing or changes in their appetite or sleeping patterns it is a good idea to visit your vet. Remember to visit the vet at least once a year and keep your dog well groomed, brushing their hair and trimming their nails.

Our dogs will always be there for us, through thick and thin we can always count on their undying love. Show the love in return, show them an amazing life by keeping them healthy and happy for years to come.

Every Home Should Have a Cathole

Cathole

Catholes are small, flap-less doors intended for indoor use – generally in closet doors for easy access to a litter box. They are specifically designed with a bristle type brush lining the interior, which helps to remove the excess hair off your cat to minimize the need for personal grooming (not to mention saving you chore time by eliminating the excessive sweeping, vacuuming, and lint rolling).  The Cathole’s bristles also have a second function as a good place to keep your cat amused while rubbing their whiskers against the bristles.
Continue reading

How To Control Fleas During The Summer Months

controlling dog flies in summer

This time of the year fleas are abundant, so it’s important to be aware of flea management and prevention. For those who have cat doors or dog doors, pets have a greater chance of exposure, so it especially important to consistently check pets for signs and symptoms of fleas. Below we share some knowledge about controlling fleas on your pets and throughout the house. Continue reading

Five Dog Training Mistakes To Avoid

1. Knowing When To Quit. Training a new puppy, or an older dog, requires finding the right balance between dedicating just enough time to training while still keeping sessions short enough as to not frustrate your canine companion. The best way to approach training sessions is to continue until you have a success, reward with praise, then quit. This will keep frustrations to a minimum (for both you and your pup!) and keeps dogs motivated and responsive. However, on the flip side, don’t end a training session too soon. It’s important for dogs to understand what you recognize as success, so try to encourage positive behavior during training sessions. Positivity is always key!

2. Too Many Treats. Treats are a great way to encourage positive behavior and recognize your pup with rewards. However, don’t overlook the inherent value in praise and acknowledgment. Treats are an effective way to teach a new dog old tricks, but eventually replace treats with other positive reinforcers such as toys or praise.  Unexpectedly rewarding your dog with treats will work to sharpen behavior, but constant treats will encourage your dog to lose focus and motivation.

3. Excessive Emotion. Using too much emotion (positive or negative) can be distracting and inhibit a dog’s ability to focus and learn. Negative feedback using force or anger is not conducive to training, and will significantly intimidate a dog, making training a destructive experience. Using positive feedback that is too over the top can also over-excite dogs, making them unfocused and hyper. Use a calming energy when training a dog, and ensure that praise is loving and supportive without being over the top. Dogs will respond best to a calm authority who rewards positive behavior with gentle praise and affection.

4. Inconsistency.  Inconsistency is one of the biggest mistakes you can make in the training process. It’s important to define ground rules early on, and stick to your guns. Variances in the training process will confuse and frustrate your pup, and reduce their ability to learn. Inconsistency also breaks trust, one of the most important factors in your relationship with your dog

5. Being Reactive. Timing is often key for learning to be proactive in the training process. It requires a lot of patience and the ability to understand and anticipate your dog’s behavior. By foreseeing your dog’s next action, you can easily adjust your training to be most effective.

Pet Doors’ Tip: These training mistakes apply to both cats and dogs! Remember, when teaching your pet to use their new cat door or dog door to stay away from these common training blunders. It’s best to make any experience with new pet doors purrfectly positive!

What makes dog walks unique? Here's our need to know guide!

Dog Walking 101

With the weather warming up, it’s finally time to get outside with your canine companion for a long walk or to play in the park. While you may be an old pro at walking the dog, there is still a lot to keep in mind when taking your pup out and about. Continue reading

Springtime Safety for Outdoor Pets

spring safety for outdoor pets

It’s springtime and your pup (or cat!) wants to get outside and enjoy the great outdoors. But before they run out the pet door, take a step back and make sure you have puppy-proofed the outdoors and taken the necessary cautions for your cat. There are lots of plants, chemicals, and fertilizers that can be harmful to your pet, so make sure that your garden and surrounding yard are pet-safe before your pets romp outdoors to play! Read our tips below for what to look for when making your garden or yard pet-proof.

 

Poisonous Plants: One of the main considerations when choosing your outdoor greenery is to recognize that many common plants are poisonous to both cats and dogs. This includes popular outdoor favorites such as sago palm, rhododendron, and azalea. The ASPCA published a full list of toxic and non-toxic plants to make garden planning a breeze – read it here. Additionally, it’s important to avoid any type of plant or tree that can contribute to allergies. Using pollen-free plant species is the best way to ensure your pet’s health – as well as your own!

 

Fertilizer and Insecticides: Both of these are often necessary for keeping gardens well fed and healthy. However, they can be extremely dangerous for pets.  Fertilizers can cause serious stomach upset when digested, and insecticides are also highly toxic. When using fertilizer, make sure to carefully read the instructions and keep your pet away from sprayed areas for the necessary waiting time.  When using pesticides, make sure to take the same precautions. Always carefully read the manufacturer instructions for proper storage and handling.

 

Mulch: It’s important to consider what type of mulch you use for your garden. A popular choice is cocoa bean mulch, which contains theobromine and coffee – common substances found in chocolate – that are toxic to both cats and dogs. If a pet ingests cocoa mulch it can cause seizures, hyperactivity, vomiting, diarrhea, or muscle tremors. But rest assured, there are many safe alternatives for our canine companions. Use substitutions such as shredded pine, or hemlock or cedar bark.

 

Compost Piles: Compost piles are a great way to add healthy soil to your garden. It’s great for the plants and for your greenery. However, make sure that compost piles are inaccessible to outdoor pets – especially if you have a pet that loves to dig in the trash. Certain products such as specific fruits and vegetables, moldy food, or coffee can pose a danger to pets. So be sure when composting to keep your pets away – it’s the best thing for our canine companions.

 

Outdoor Access: Once you have your garden fully pet-proofed, don’t forget the most important part – letting your furry friend outdoors to roam! Installing a dog door or cat door is simple to do and lets your pet easily explore the outdoors. Happy gardening!