Keeping your Pet Busy During Quarantine Time
Article by: Robin Hall - Out2News/Out2martincounty.com
DogTV is worth booting up for pooch pleasure
The only thing better than binge-watching episodes of “Friday Night Lights” or “The West Wing” while social distancing is doing so with a furry friend. When you take a break or read a book, though, log onto DogTV so they can have some entertainment, too. There’s currently a 30-day free trial period for the streaming website, which features several canine-friendly videos for stimulation, relaxation and exposure. (Also on tap: lots of helpful how-to videos for owners, including how to make liver pate!) It’s pretty fun for a human to watch, too, with all kinds of cute dogs, though the soothing music might put you and nearby companions in a napping mindset.
Playing outside is refreshing but keep it fun inside, too
In a period of self-isolation, it’s still OK to walk your dog in your neighborhood or, if you have a fenced-in backyard, let them loose to run around. Invest in a Chuckit! launcher or just grab a tennis ball and play fetch – it’s especially fun if you have a young child who needs some exercise, too. The fun doesn’t have to end inside, though. Treat-dispensing puzzle toys where dogs have to use their noggins to get a snack are good to have around the house (especially if you’re trying to get work done or homeschooling your human children), rubber toys and plastic keys are favorite chewing items, but also have options like ropes for tug of war where you can also have a blast.
Healthy treats will help everybody get through mealtime
Being home a lot more means a lot more meals where hungry pups might be hanging around begging or at least annoyingly parked at your feet. That might be a good time for a treat, though don’t make them a peanut butter and jelly sandwich if you’re having one. Instead, opt for apple slices, celery or carrots that will quell their taste buds as you finish up. (Good luck getting them off your case if you’re making a steak sandwich.)
Show them all the love
Engaging with your pet is important – maybe you want to take funny pictures of them to send to social-distancing relatives or re-create famous movie scenes for a blog (pictures are what I'm all about). Some extra care and attention are also key because if this coronavirus crisis is stressing you out, they’ll feel it, too. If your dog loves napping next to you, have a stack of blankets for snuggling. Or if your dog is more like a cat, let him have enough alone time. A bond between human and canine is strong, and fostering that will help everybody through tough times.
Martin Downs Animal Hospital Coronavirus Update
The health and well-being of your pet is our top priority. As news of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in our community continues to develop, we are taking extra precautions to ensure the health and safety of humans within our facilities.
At this time, our clinic remains open and is operating under regular business hours. Effective Wednesday, March 25, we are restricting access to our lobby and adjusting our check-in and checkout procedures to keep our hospital staff and clients safe during this pandemic. We kindly ask that you follow the steps below for the safety of all:
• If you are healthy and have an appointment, upon arrival at our clinic, PLEASE REMAIN IN YOUR VEHICLE OR OUTSIDE THE CLINIC AND CALL US. After receipt of the call we will check in your pet as soon as possible from outside of the clinic. We kindly ask that you remain in your car during the entire time your pet is receiving medical care at our facility.
• If you need to pick up food or medication, PLEASE REMAIN IN YOUR VEHICLE OR OUTSIDE THE CLINIC AND CALL US. We will coordinate payment with you over the phone and deliver the order to your car as soon as possible. Pet food and prescription refills can also be ordered ONLINE at www.vet4yourpet.net.
• If you are feeling ill or experiencing flu-like symptoms and have an upcoming non-life threatening appointment, we kindly ask that you call us to reschedule.
• If your pet requires urgent care or has a medical emergency, and you are ill, please make arrangements with a friend or family member to bring in the pet for you. We kindly ask that you call us ahead of time to make appropriate arrangements and follow the above guidelines.
If you do not have a trusted friend, neighbor, or healthy family member to transport your pet, PLEASE CALL 772-288-3456 to make appropriate arrangements.
For all the above scenarios we will do our best to coordinate your visit from outside the hospital, including providing follow-up instructions and payment. Our goal is to continue to deliver essential services to our patients and keep pets and people safe!
For additional questions, please contact us at 772-288-3456 or you can respond to this email.
Thank you for your patience and cooperation.
The team at Martin Downs Animal Hospital
Questions Answers for Your Pets During Coronavirus Pandemic
Article by: Cesar Pet Products
Can my Pet Catch Coronavirus?
There is no evidence that pets can be infected with the human COVID-19 virus and no evidence they can be a source of infection to people. Coronaviruses tend to be species specific, i.e., dogs and cats have their own version of the virus and are not affected by human viruses.
Should my pet wear a mask?
There’s no scientific evidence that masks protect pets from infectious diseases or air pollutants. Pets’ faces are more varied than human faces so a mask is unlikely to fit properly. We can't explain to pets why we are putting something on their face so they may get scared.
Is There a Risk my Pet Could get Coronavirus From Your Food?
Please be assured that the current coronavirus outbreak does not pose a food safety risk to humans or pets, either through packaging or the food itself. The processing conditions involved in the production of our food products are sufficient to destroy the virus.
What's the Best Way to Protect my Pet From Getting Coronavirus?
There's no evidence that pets can be infected with the human COVID-19 virus and no evidence they can be a source of infection to people. We recommend:
- thorough hand-washing
- keeping pets away from anyone infected
- confining pets if they've been around someone infected
I Can't Get my Usual Food. Is it OK for me to Switch Diet?
Yes! Ideally, choose a similar food (dry or wet) and slowly incorporate small amounts of the new food over the course of one week to ensure that a sudden change does not cause a dietary upset.
Should I still take my pet for a walk?
Absolutely - take your pet for a walk on a leash, preferably with limited to no interaction with other people or pets. It's good for you too.
Calling on Foster Pet Parents During Social Distancing Period
Palm City - The Humane Society of the Treasure Coast (HSTC) is calling on people during this time of recommended social distancing to volunteer to be a foster pet parent. Due to COVID-19, the HSTC has reduced its hours of operation at its Palm City shelter and closed its two Thrift Stores, which normally both have areas for adoptable cats. This has prompted the need for more people to provide foster care for its shelter animals.
Certain qualifications must be met to provide a foster home for a pet and may be found on the HSTC’s website, www.hstc1.org.
“If you’ve considered providing foster care to one of our shelter pets, now is the perfect time,” said HSTC President & CEO Frank Valente. “A shelter pet provides unconditional love and would provide company, especially to those who are living alone and perhaps feeling isolated during this challenging time.”
About the Humane Society of the Treasure Coast – The Humane Society of the Treasure Coast (HSTC) is a no-kill animal welfare organization located at 4100 SW Leighton Farm Ave. in Palm City, FL. Since 1955, it has been the leading advocate for animal protection and well-being in the Martin County area. A 501(c)3 private, nonprofit organization, the HSTC is independent and locally operated and relies on donations to support its programs and services. Follow the HSTC on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/humanesocietyTC and Twitter at https://www.twitter.com/hstc1. For more information, visit https://www.hstc1.org or call (772) 223-8822.
OUT2NEWS MARCH BARK BYTE SPRING CLEANING: PET SAFE CLEANING TIPS
Article by: Robin Hall – Out2News/Out2martincounty.com
Spring cleaning takes on a whole new meaning when you have a pet. Cleaning up after a pet is challenging enough, further complicated by the fact that many commercial household cleaning products contain ingredients that can be harmful to pets.
There are plenty of ways to keep your pets protected while you engage in some seasonal scrubbing.
Why Is Pet Safe Cleaning Important?
Commercial cleaning products generally have a long list of unfamiliar sounding ingredients, many of which can be toxic to our pets. Pets encounter cleaning products in a variety of ways, and even a small amount of ingested or inhaled can cause damage, thanks to ingredients such as ammonia, phthalates, chlorine, phenols, and alcohol. Many of these chemicals are extremely poisonous, and some are known animal carcinogens.
Certain brands are made with safety and biodegradability in and can generally be found alongside traditional cleaning products at most major stores. Cat owners should try to avoid any product containing essential oils, as some can be irritating or even toxic to cats.
If you use a traditional commercial cleaning product in your home, dilute it when appropriate and keep pets out of the area until products are dry. Make sure you store any cleaning product out of reach of a curious pet.
Baking soda is an inexpensive, non-toxic product that you probably already have in your cupboard, but did you know it works wonders as a cleaning agent?
- Sprinkle a layer of baking soda in the litter box before adding fresh litter to neutralize odor
- Mix with water and use to scrub sinks, pet food and water bowls, and other non-porous surfaces
- For embarrassing toilet bowl rings, pour baking soda and lemon juice into the bowl, let sit for 10 minutes, and scrub
- Add ½ cup to the laundry to deodorize pet bedding
Distilled White Vinegar
White vinegar has been a beloved all-purpose cleaner for decades. Although it has a distinctive odor, it generally evaporates within a few minutes, leaving your home sparkling clean. Simply combine ½ cup of white vinegar with 1 gallon of water and pour into a spray bottle for a safe, effective, all-purpose cleaner for:
- Sinks and faucets
- Litter boxes
- Feeding dishes
- Non-porous pet toys
- Carpet stains (mix with salt, borax, or cornstarch)
We all love our furry friends, so keep your eyes open for any harmful things out there that might put our friends in harm’s way. Happy Spring to you and your furry friends from Out2News/Out2martincounty.com
Humane Society of the Treasure Coast Announces Temporary Changes Due to Coronavirus
Palm City - Due to the growing concerns of the new coronavirus, the Humane Society of the Treasure Coast (HSTC) is putting the following practices into place from March 18 until at least Wednesday, April 8, at which time further evaluations will be done.
FACILITIES: Hours of operation are now 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday and will be closed on Sundays. Out of an abundance of caution, the HSTC will be closed to foot traffic and entry will only be permitted for those with a confirmed appointment. This includes adoptions, owner surrender intake, and owner requested euthanasia.
ADOPTIONS: The adoption center will operate via appointments only. Those interested in adopting may go online to the HSTC’s pet database to view all animals currently available first and then call 772-223-8822 to make a meet & greet appointment between the hours of 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. only. Through this Saturday, March 21, adopters can take advantage of a Spring Break Adoption Special. All adoption fees are being waived. The normal adoption fees are $125 for dogs, $45 for cats and $25 for critters.
WELLNESS CLINIC: The HSTC’s animal wellness clinic will exclusively support essential services that encompass sick and injured animals in its care. Public spay/neuter programs have been suspended and the HSTC team will reach out to reschedule appointments in the coming weeks.
RECEIVING: The HSTC’s receiving center will operate via appointments only. Call 772-223-8822 to schedule an appointment for owner surrenders. Stray healthy adult cats will not be accepted during this time to help prevent overcrowding of the shelter.
THRIFT STORES: Both HSTC thrift stores will be closed until further notice and no donations will be accepted at this time.
EVENTS AND ORIENTATIONS: Due to growing concerns for the community’s health and safety, the HSTC-sponsored events and activities have been cancelled until further notice. This includes volunteer orientations, the Volunteer Appreciation Party, Mutt March and Bunfest. The upcoming Neonatal Kitten Care class is now a Facebook Live event. The HSTC encourages supporters to continue to support the shelter by visiting its Facebook page for virtual events: https://www.facebook.com/humanesocietyTC.
HUMANE EDUCATION: Pet Therapy and other Humane Education programs are suspended until further notice. All obedience and training classes will be held outdoors under the tent behind the shelter until further notice. Class attendance will be left to the discretion of participants.
The shelter management team will continue monitoring any developments and plan accordingly in partnership with local, state, and federal authorities.
“Our ability to provide care for our most vulnerable population is dependent on your continued support,” said HSTC President & CEO Frank Valente. “We need you now more than ever as we hope for the best but prepare for the worst. Thank you for helping us keep the pets and people of Martin County safe and healthy!”
TIPS TO KEEP YOUR PETS ON THE RIGHT DIET
Article by: Latasha Ball
Does your dog have food allergies? Here’s why a limited ingredient formula may be the best way to accommodate her dietary needs.
Is your dog licking her paws excessively? Does she seem to be itching her ears or body at every available moment? Chances are she may be suffering from food or environmental allergies. But how do you know for sure? And if it is a food allergy, what type of diet is best for your pup? Let’s look into this further.
Food allergies: what are they and how do they affect my dog?
Food allergies are immune system reactions to a certain ingredient that your dog is exposed to. Symptoms can include itchy skin, hives, upset stomach, swollen facial features, and reoccurring ear or paw infections. Typically, food allergies develop when a dog has been exposed to the same ingredient repeatedly throughout her life. “Some think that rotating protein and fiber sources in your dog’s diet may help to minimize the occurrence of food allergies,” says veterinarian Dr. Bradley Quest. “Although this is not scientifically proven, it may help some individuals because the dog’s immune system is not constantly exposed to the same food ingredients all the time.”
According to Dr. Quest, a food intolerance – as opposed to an allergy – can occur at the initial exposure to a specific food ingredient and is usually not a result of an immune system reaction. “Food intolerances usually manifest as gastrointestinal symptoms,” he says. Gastrointestinal symptoms in dogs consist of but are not limited to a change in appetite, changes in stool quality or quantity, weight loss, and abdominal pain.
How to know if your dog has a food allergy
The best way to know if your dog has a food allergy is to talk with your veterinarian. He or she knows your dog best, and can properly diagnose your pup. Once the diagnosis is made, your vet may put your dog on a food elimination diet – a diet that involves feeding your dog a single protein and a single fiber source for anywhere from 8–12 weeks as needed. If you notice during this period that your dog’s allergic symptoms do not surface or reoccur, then you can rule that the allergy was not the result of the ingredients she was eating.
Do Dogs Dream?
Whether or not dogs dream isn’t known with scientific certainty, but it sure is difficult to imagine that they don’t. We’ve all watched our dogs demonstrate behaviors in their sleep that resemble what they do in a fully awake state. Paddling legs, whining, growling, wagging tails, chewing jowls, and twitching noses inspire us to wonder what our dogs are dreaming about.
What we know about dogs and dreams
While our knowledge on this topic is very limited, the following known information helps us believe that dogs do indeed experience dreams. When we observe our dogs as they sleep, it’s just about impossible to imagine that they are not dreaming. Just like the rats studied by Wilson and Louie, it is tempting to believe that our four-legged best buddies are reenacting their recent experiences; playing at the dog park, sniffing in the woods, chewing on a treasured bone, and chasing squirrels.The National Institutes of Health says that Sigmund Freud theorized that dreaming was a “safety valve” for our unconscious desires. Perhaps he is correct, and, when our dogs sleep, they dream about catching the neighbor’s pesky cat, continuous belly rubs in conjunction with unlimited dog treats, and stealing the Thanksgiving turkey from the dining room table.
Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats
2/3 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup peanut butter
2 large eggs
3 cups whole wheat flour, or more, as needed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat pumpkin puree, peanut butter and eggs on medium-high until well combined, about 1-2 minutes. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour at low speed, beating just until incorporated. Add an additional 1/4 cup flour at a time just until the dough is no longer sticky.
Working on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough 3-4 times until it comes together. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using cookie cutters, cut out desired shapes and place onto the prepared baking sheet.
Place into oven and bake until the edges are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.*
Let cool completely.
DIY Homemade Dog Food
1 1/2 cups brown rice
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 pounds ground turkey
3 cups baby spinach, chopped
2 carrots, shredded
1 zucchini, shredded
1/2 cup peas, canned or frozen
In a large saucepan of 3 cups water, cook rice according to package instructions; set aside
Heat olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add ground turkey and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the turkey as it cooks.
Stir in spinach, carrots, zucchini, peas and brown rice until the spinach has wilted and the mixture is heated through, about 3-5 minutes.
Let cool completely.
For more information call them
This Might Be the Best Way to Entertain a Bored Dog on a Rainy Day
Article by: Justin Palmer
If your dog is like mine, they are not at all fans of inclement weather!
The moment the rain starts, my dog’s personality changes and she becomes restless. If the rain lasts long enough, she begins to act depressed, moping around, begging me for something to do (or better yet, something to eat!)
About 6 months ago, I discovered a tactic that forever changed our activities when the weather sours.
Why “Nose Work” Can Be Your Dog’s Best Friend During Stormy Weather
For a dog, their sense of smell is absolutely crucial to their mental and physical health.
The term “nose work” was created to define the professional canine scent detection training activity translated to pet dogs. It’s an easy-to-learn, fun activity to engage in with your pet and has even become a competitive sport.
Nose work can help build your dog’s focus, confidence, and enhance general obedience training. Overactive dogs can use nose work to focus their energy into a productive activity (great for bad weather!).
Our Favorite Way to Get Your Dog Started with Nose Work
Our Favorite Way to Get Your Dog Started with Nose Work
While you can hide treats anywhere, my dog LOVES the Sniff Diggy™ Nose Work Mat, which was specifically designed to make sniffing out treats just challenging enough.
Simply hide treats inside the durable cloth fabric, and watch your dog use their nose and brain sniffing them out.
You can hide kibble or small treats in between the strips.
OUT2NEWS 2020 PETS OF THE WEEK!
ALL PETS GO TO HEAVEN
Article by: Robin Hall – Out2News/Out2martincounty.com
There is a very special place where beloved pets go after they die. This is only a temporary location. But there are trees and grass and lakes, and everything they love. Here they can play and eat and sleep, even better than they did, before they died. Now, there are no aches or worries or dangers of any kind to trouble or threaten them. The only joy missing is their beloved human companion, you.
All health is restored completely, and all injuries are healed. Dogs and cats play with each other like youngsters, and they do not have time to feel lonely for you. They miss you, and with the special wisdom that animals have, they trust that this condition will get better. And they confidently wait as they frolic.
A wonderful day will come for each of them, when in the middle of playing they will suddenly feel something is different. And all their senses will be at the height of excitement and exuberance. They will sniff the air and look off in the distance where they recognize that dearly loved special presence. Then they will call out in elation, and with eyes shining and tail going wild, tear off at a full gallop, almost flying over the green grass.
The bond that we form with animals can be very deep and fulfilling, and the loss of a beloved animal can have an impact on us that is as great, or even greater, than the loss of a family member or friend. This bond is what makes our interactions with animals rich and rewarding, but also what makes the grief process so complicated. The grief can seem to come in waves, may be brought on more intensely by a sight or sound that sparks your memory, and may seem overwhelming at times.
After your pet has died or been lost, it is natural and normal to feel grief and sorrow. The amount of time a person grieves for the loss of their pet may be very different for different people. Although grief is an internal and private response, there are certain stages of grief that most people experience, and not everyone experiences them all or in the same order.Anger and guilt often follow denial.
Your anger may be directed toward people you normally love and respect, including your family, friends or your veterinarian. People coping with death will often say things that they do not really mean, unintentionally hurting those whom they do not mean to hurt.
Depression is a common experience after the death of a special pet. The tears flow, there are knots in your stomach, and you feel drained of all your energy. Day-to-day tasks can seem impossible to perform and you may feel is isolated and alone. Many depressed people will avoid the company of friends and family.
You will come to terms with your feelings. You begin to accept your pet’s death. Resolution has occurred when you can remember your pet and your time with them without feeling the intense grief and emotional pain you previously felt. Acceptance and resolution are normal and do not mean that you no longer feel a sense of loss, just that you have come to terms with the fact that your pet has died. Everyone experiences the stages of grief, grieving is always a very personal process. Allow yourself time to grieve and heal, and be thankful that your life was made that much better by sharing it with your beloved pet.
Memorializing a pet can be a healthy part of the grieving process. A framed photo or a photo album can help remind a pet parent of their pet. Some people keep the ashes of their pets and bury them in a spot favored by their pet. Creating a journal that includes stories about the things your dog did will help you focus on the good times you spent together. Photographs record those special moments and lock them forever in time. Have a professional portrait painted as a memorial to your dog companion. If you enjoy gardening, plant a tree, perennial, bush or shrub in memory of your dog. Donate to an animal organization in your dog’s name. Some pet lovers place a brick or stone with their pet’s name painted on it in their gardens or they buy specially designed and inscribed grave markers if their pet is buried on their property.
Realizing that a seemingly trifle, yet possibly most-significant part of pet ownership is doing the right thing for our pets at the end of their lives. Sometimes the hardest things to do are the best things we can do. Loving animals teaches us something about ourselves and so does letting them go…
Out2 Bark Byte is dedicated to Robin Hall’s – Owner of Out2News best friend “Teddy”. RIP 8/4/2015
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