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The Poochy Blog

Pet Safety

"On Dasher, on Dancer, on Prancer and Vixen!

On PetMed w/Bags full of  Shelter Dog's Fixins!
by Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Pet Sitter, Dog Walker & Trail Guide

As the Christmas gift-giving season comes to a close and we get ready to ring in the new year with vegie-infused water and beef drizzled Milkbones, our hearts have been warmed here at The Poochy (despite the snow) by a large, professional business with an equally large, small-town heart.
PetMeds slid down our chimney a few days ago bearing a gift bag filled with various and sundry boxes of different sizes, shapes and smells. They needed our help! Having heard of our community partnership with Animal House Rescue (they follow Bella Dog on Twitter) they needed to make sure the items got to all the good dogs at Animal House Rescue!
Although we’ve known about PetMeds great products, professional pharmacy, and commitment to continuing education, we had no idea they were Secret Santas donning white capes and bright red tights. It seems they volunteer for Santa throughout the year to spread health, happiness, and all around good cheer to shelters in need.
With the rescue world being so full of hard knocks and tough tales, it's great to know that there’s a business out there that truly cares about those they’ve pledged to serve.
Not surprisingly, PetMed has millions of satisfied clients. They’ve been recognized for their excellence by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, enjoy an A+ Better Business Bureau reputation, and their full array of excellent, affordable products can be shipped right to your front door – frequently free-of-charge.  
Want to support your local shelters? Put your money where your paws are and get to know the great work PetMed is doing right in your local community!

The Yellow Dog Project

The Yellow Dog Project
Respecting a Dog's Space
By: Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Pet Sitter, Dog Walker & Trail Guide

You've heard the adage: "A picture's worth a thousand words." How about seven?

This is a great idea from The Yellow Dog Project

Please be sure and spread the news by forwarding this post to your friends and Vet's office to post!

I'm thinking a yellow poop bag would make a nice "ribbon."

Spot's Light

Spot's Light
Lighted Collars & Leashes
By Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Dog Walker, Pet Sitter & Trail Guide

And God said: "Let there be light."
And Spot said: "Make mine neon!"

So, as many of you know, Bella handles our Twitter account here at The Poochy. The other day, she was minding her own business, when a dog named Honey started following her. 

Being the friendly pooch she is, she stopped what she was doing and made friends. It turns out Honey is the R & D Director for a very cool family-owned company named Spot's Light. So, after passing some Tweets back and forth, Honey beamed Bella a package of light containing an awesome collar and leash - that light up. Too cool!

Bella, being a tiny dog of large character, gave it to her friend Bailey...a much bigger pooch, and Bailey has been sporting it ever since!

Here at Poochy Doos, LLC, we've found Spot's Light to be an invaluable tool and way over due!  The collar and leash are constructed of sturdy nylon with a swivel clip and they light-up for night-time walking. 

I can't tell you all the close calls we've had at Poochy Doos walking dogs at night with good drivers (or bikers) who just didn't see us or were distracted. That being said, we're not your average dog walkers. Our dog walkers are trained to be "actively scanning the horizon" for potential hazards that can threaten a dog's safety. We don't chat on cell phones, listen to i-pods or walk and chat with friends along the way. We're simply there, walking our client's dog, and paying attention to our surroundings. 

This product is perfect for the average dog owner who frequently walks their dog around the neighborhood or bike trails at dusk (perhaps the poorest lighting of all) or at night. It provides a six foot lead lit-up with very bright, neon-color lights that projects your presence from several yards away. It is also reasonably priced. In fact, for the same price you'd pay for a regular collar and lead, you could purchase the added security of Spot's Light!

Used correctly, the visibility this product provides could easily help avert accidents that could otherwise occur from distracted drivers, bikers (and dog owners)!

We hope you check them out and support their great products! 

Salt & Chemical Ice Melters

Salt & Chemical Ice Melters:
Preventing Illness & Chemical Burns
By Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Pet Sitter & Dog Walker

Wintertime in Colorado, while filled with unparalleled recreational opportunities, is also filled with challenges for your dog, chief among them ice and salt-based ice melting products. 

Surprised?  You’re not alone.  Many people are unaware of the serious health problems posed by exposure to these products.

Problems Include
  • Severe dermatitis, sores, infection or blistering
  • Inflammation of paws
  • Chemical burns of paws
  • Chemical burns of the tongue and mouth and digestive tract
  • Gastrointestinal problems such as vomiting
  • Bloat
  • Kidney Problems
  • Pancreatitis

How This Happens:
Dogs who have access to walkways treated with salt-based or chemical ice melters frequently get the super-heated pellets (175◦) stuck to their paws. This can cause direct exterior damage to the paw, and result in further interior damage when your dog licks and ingests the pellets. Repeated ingestion can result in kidney problems or pancreatitis.  Bloat (an emergency situation) is a greater threat in larger dogs who tend to drink large amounts of water.

What To Do:
  • Buy pet-friendly ice melting products
  • Use Musher’s Secret Paw Protection
  • Invest in doggie booties
  • Keep your dog’s fur trimmed around his or her pads
  • Avoid salted areas
  • If exposed, wipe your dog’s paws liberally with a warm cloth to remove the salt
  • If your dog consumes salt contact your vet immediately

The Dangers of Bloat

Exercising Your Dog at the Wrong Time:
Potentially Fatal?
By Mary Watterson, Fort Collins Dog Walker, Pet Sitter & Trail Guide

Your dog loves playing fetch and you love playing with your dog!  So, what's the problem? Nothing, as long as you're aware that right before or right after meals is not the best time to play, as you could be inviting Bloat.

What's bloat? Bloat is a dangerous condition where the a dog's stomach fills with air, fluid and/or food which can cause the stomach to become enlarged. This in turn can put pressure on various organs, cause difficulty breathing and can even decrease or cut off blood supply. Gastric torsion can result - an enlarge and twisted stomach, that requires immediate veterinary attention.

Some Symptoms:
  • Distended, enlarged  abdomen
  • Trying  to belch or vomit
  • Weakness
  • Increased or excessive salivation
  • Shortness of breath or shallow breathing
  • Lowered body temperature
  • Pale gums
  • Increased, rapid heartbeat
  • Collapse

Some Known Risk Factors:
  • Vigorous exercise or play after eating
  • Rapid eating
  • Feeding one large meal a day
  • Over-eating
  • Over-drinking
  • Stress
  • Trauma

If you suspect your dog may be showing signs of Bloat, take them to the vet immediately. Bloat can be fatal if not immediately treated

Poochy Doos, LLC is not a vet. Information contained in this article has been derived by conducting independent web research and should not be relied on as accurate or exhaustive.

As always, should you have further questions or concerns about this important issue, please see your vet or consult with the CSU Vet Teaching Hospital.