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You are currently browsing the The Pet Product Guru blog archives for February, 2016.



February 2016

Archive for February, 2016

Training Your Puppy With a Clicker

Sunday, February 28, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

DOG traINingClicker training is a very effective way to train your puppy. Here’s how it works. It allows your pup to remember doing something right rather than doing something wrong. Mark that behavior with a click and treat so he associates the sound with doing something right. The clicker simply signals to your pup that he did something right. Then give him verbal praise.

Here’s how to explain the click to your puppy.

Fill a shallow dog dish with treats.
Get comfortable on the floor with the dish within reach but so the pup can’t access it. Get a treat ready in one hand with the clicker in the other.
Click the clicker when your pups ears twitch or he gets curious and comes to investigate. Immediately give him a treat.
Keep repeating this sequence over and over and always click before giving him the  dog treat.
Very quickly, your pup will look at the treat in your hand as soon as he hears the click.
Once your puppy figures out what the click is all about, you can use it anytime he does something right. Always reward him with a dog treat and praise. Remember that puppies understand cause and effect very quickly.

Remember, your pets count!

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The Old Girl Is Up To Her Old Tricks

Saturday, February 27, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

This is not Molly but what she does to get me up in the morning!

My cat Molly usually gets what she wants. When she wants to eat, she eats, when she wants to get brushed, she gets brushed, when she wants me to get out of bed, I usually get out of bed. She is back to using this tactic. I have a Bose Wave radio on my nightstand. On this unit, the buttons are on top. Molly knows which buttons turn the radio on and which raise the volume. Mollie begins by tapping me on the cheek to wake me up, when I don’t respond, she sits on top of my head, if I still don’t respond, she quietly edges over to the nightstand and uses her butt or paw to turn the radio on and raise the volume to that of a symphony! Well, she won this morning. The sound jolted me out of bed as I frantically grasped for the off button. She got her cat food and fresh water in her water bowl when she wanted it! Molly rules!

Remember, your pets count

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Sweet Can Kill!

Thursday, February 25, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

ANTIFREEZEAnti freeze, the fluid that makes your car run better in both summer and winter is very dangerous to your pet. Ethylene Glycol is the anti freeze that is commonly used in car radiators and this is extremely toxic to pets. As little as one tablespoon can kill a cat and a couple of ounces can kill a dog. Animals will ingest it because it smells and tastes so sweet. If you have pets, it is vital that you clean up any leaking anti freeze. If you’re worried that you pet may have ingested some, don’t waste any time. Call your veterinarian or the National Animal Poison Control hot line right away! Your veterinarian may suggest that you administer hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting. Don’t administer any pet medication on your own. This situation is out of your control just get your pet to a vet as soon as you can!!

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How To Care For A Chihuahua

Wednesday, February 24, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

cutestSo you just took home your tiny Chihuahua, now you have to know how to care for it. Chihuahua’s are a wonderful breed and with a little know how, you both can enjoy a long and fun filled life together. Here are five facts to get you started.

1. Feeding your Chihuahua – Your chihuahua must know that you’re the one that is in control. It is recommended that you feed him his dog food twice a day once in the morning and once around dinner time. I do not recommend table food unless you give him things like the white meat of a chicken or turkey once in a while. Check with your vet when it comes to table food. Feed your chihuahua about 8 to 10 hours apart. Also, give him a few treats two to three times a day and no more. I had a problem with my Chihuahua in that I gave him treats when he wanted them and then refused to eat his “real food.” Feed your Chihuahua wisely. A poor diet can led to poor health.

2. Bathing your Chihuahua – You may bath him about once a month. Chihuahuas’ are groom themselves well and rarely have that “dog smell.” Use a mild shampoo with a moisturizer to prevent dry skin. Make sure that you dry him thoroughly. A wet chihuahua is a cold chihuahua. Do not bath puppies that have not had all of their vaccinations. Consult your veterinarian as to when to start bathing him.

3. Brushing your Chihuahua – You really don’t have to brush him often because his hair is short and he won’t shed that much.

4. Nail Clipping – This is a nerve racking experience. Leave this to the experts and have your vet do it.

5. Walking your Chihuahua – Make sure that you walk your chihuahua at least three to four times a day. Puppies need to be walked more often. Make the walks fairly long to give him the exercise that he needs. Being that chihuahua’s are small dogs, they get cold very easily. Have a few dog coats on hand and use them when it gets cold.

Good luck and enjoy your little friend!

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Disturbing Statistics Regarding Our Pets

Tuesday, February 23, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

PETCAR1Awhile back, the Bergen Record published an article on some disturbing statistics. Most pet owners would leap into action and go the extra mile to rescue their pet with CPR if necessary. Tammy Parks of Amherst Mass. has taken a pet first aid class and she says that she wouldn’t hesitiate to help her 15 year old mixed breed terriers, Lucy and Julia. She says that the CPR mechanics are the same as humans. Parks was an American Red Cross first aid trainer. Size is the bigger difference. A poll found that few pet owners are prepared to handle pet emergencies. Only 20 percent have a pet first aid kit in their home and 54 percent do not have a fire evacuation plan for their pets. The survey also showed dangerous practices that could lead to accidents and injuries. The article pointed out that a quarter of pet owners give their pets bones from table scraps. If you do this, you are looking for trouble! STOP IT!! Sixty two percent of dog owners and a third of cat owners let their pets ride in their cars unrestrained, rather than placing them in their special pet carrier. Eleven percent leave their pets unattended in a car or truck. This is just plain cruelty! Still pet owners said that they would go the extra mile to rescue their pet. This is great but remember all of the basics that were mentioned in this article to ensure complete safety for your pets.

Remember, your pets count!

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What Kind of Cat Bed Should You Buy?

Sunday, February 21, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

catbeds3There is no direct answer to this question. I’ve spent lots of money on cat beds. My cat Molly loved her soft cat bed for the longest time. Then she suddenly decided that she didn’t want to use it anymore and made her new bed on the futon in our TV room. I could go on and on, there are so many places that cats make themselves comfortable usually in unexpected places. My younger cat Millie likes to sneak in the bedroom closet and cuddle up inside a shopping bag. I once found my cat snuggled on top of the refrigerator. So my advice is to get a comfortable cat bed to give your cat another choice. Who knows, maybe it will be his favorite place for a long time!

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Flea and Tick Products, Are They Harmful?

Saturday, February 20, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

thecutestMost flea and tick products are available over the counter. I recommend that before you use any flea and tick product, including flea and tick spray that you check with your vet. Some products may contain ingredients that can harm you pets and even your children! Here’s some recent news obtained from the Humane Society’s website.

Due to a sharp increase in the number of incidents being reported from the use of spot-on pesticide products for flea and tick control for pets, the Environmental Protection Agency announced in April 2009 that it is intensifying its evaluation of whether further restrictions on the use of these products are necessary to better protect pets.

Remember, your pets count!

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Guidelines for Dog Crates

Friday, February 19, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

Crate Training Puppy. Sheltie sleeping on fluffy and warm bed. Winter Concept

You’ve just adopted a new puppy and the first thing that you want to purchase is a dog crate.Make sure that you choose a crate size that will be large enough to accommodate him as an adult. He should be able to stand, lie down or sit in any position that he chooses. You may want to consider purchasing a crate that is sectioned off to allow for growth. Consider the kind of wire used. Make sure that your puppies paws do not fit through the wire. A crate made of plastic is easier to clean than a wire crate.

It is much safer to keep your dog in his crate while your are traveling. Remember his dog crate is his castle! Never use the crate for punishment or your dog will always associate his crate with something bad. Always keep the crate visable and let him go in it everyday. Always remove his collar before putting him in his crate. Finally give him a bowl of water, some of his favorite toys and don’t forget the dog crate pad. Now you’re all set to enjoy your new puppy!

Remember, pets are family!

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A Cats Favorite Place

Wednesday, February 17, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

catbedIt happens everyday. At about 10:00am both of my cats are through for the day. At least for now. They curl up in their favorite spots on the bed or in their cat beds and sleep through the day. Cats sure know how to sleep! Although the amount of time varies from cat to cat they spend an average of 13 to 16 hours a day curled up, fast asleep. Did you know that only the bat and the opossum sleep more? We really don’t know why cats sleep so much but they come from a long line of hunters and preditors. They are most active at dawn and at dusk. This is when their prey is most active. My cats are up at the crack of dawn looking out the window making noises to attract the birds. At night, my younger cat Millie, needs to play. I have to play with her favorite toy until she tires out. Usually, I tire out before she does!! So don’t worry if you see your cat sleeping during the day. As long as she is alert when she’s up, she eats normally and uses her litter box regularly she is a perfectly healthy, normal pet.

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How Long Should Dogs and Cats Be Left Alone?

Tuesday, February 16, 2016
posted by Jim Murphy

CATDOGALONEYou probably already know how I feel about this subject. Both dogs and cats need love and attention. Dogs needs to be walked every few hours but they also are like children and require human interaction and lots of exercise. If I had to give you the maximum time that a dog should be left alone, I would say not longer than four hours at a time. Cats are frequently left alone for days because they are perceived as independent. Not true. Cats also get bored and lonely. Cat toys alone don’t substitute for human interaction. Their food and water should always be kept fresh and their litter should be changed regularly. Cats can also get sick and need medical attention. Never leave your cat alone for days. I never leave mine alone. It does mean having to sacrifice like not traveling but that’s my choice and I wouldn’t have it any other way!  Bottom line, if you are going to have a pet, you must make the commitment to care for it properly and that means being available to fill its needs including giving them  lots of love and attention. If you are not willing to make this commitment, don’t get a pet.

Remember, your pets count!

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