Thursday, June 26, 2014

Hot Time in a Cool Town!

It looks like it’s going to be a stellar summer! And while, with that, comes plenty of reason for rejoicing, those of us who are owned by canine companions have reason to be anxious, as well. Dogs are much more prone to heatstroke than many people think. But it’s well worth preventing because, once you’ve seen it, you’ll never want to have your pooch experience it again!

Of course, never (ever, ever) leave your dog unattended in a car, but even when you're out together on a hot day, keep an eye out for the following signs:

• Heavy panting • Elevated body temperature  • Excessive thirst Weakness, collapse • Glazed eyes Increased pulse and heartbeat • Vomiting, bloody diarrhea • Seizures • Bright or dark red tongue, gums • Excessive drooling • Staggering • Unconsciousness

With all the warnings out of the way, there are lots of fun things you can do with your pooch to embrace those dog days of summer. Every dog enjoys a day at the lake or the beach, where there is plenty of opportunity to splash around in the cooling water.

The beach a little too out of the way? It's easy to transform your backyard into a canine watermark. A child’s plastic pool is a lot of dog’s idea of summer heaven. For added fun, choose toys that can be filled with water and frozen, offering fun refreshment over a number of hours.

Many cities now show movies outside on large screens during the summer. In most cases, your dog will be welcome.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Fostering Option

If you really would love a dog in your life but don’t feel quite ready to make a full commitment, fostering might be a terrific option to explore.

When you foster a dog, you work with a rescue organization or shelter and care for a dog in your home for a predetermined amount of time or until a forever home is found. The dog’s life improves because of you. And, likewise, your own life is improved by a very special relationship with an animal in need.

It’s one of those wonderful win-win situations. The dog gets experience in a home environment while getting socialized with humans and other pets, better preparing it for its forever home.

The dog will have more opportunity to exercise, since the foster human may have a backyard and should provide regular walks, which may not be provided at the shelter.

Since you’ll get to know the dog, you can provide invaluable insight to potential adopters, helping ensure he or she gets a home that’s a better match.

Puppies who are too young to be adopted have a chance to grow up and be with their mother before being adopted.

Dogs recovering from illness or injuries can get the attention they need.

Dogs stressed by a shelter environment have an opportunity for more comfortable living quarters.

A space is opened up at the shelter or rescue, allowing the staff to save the life of one more dog.

If you’re considering adopting, fostering can be an opportunity to see how a dog can fit in your life before making a commitment. But it’s important to be aware that it’s still a serious responsibility to take on, though a rewarding one.

All Paws Massage

I just can’t say too much about Marta Banat’s All Paws Massage. My dogs have been enjoying massages and it was a wonderful and relaxing experience for them. It made me want one! 

Marta’s words on the subject are the most eloquent, so I think  I'll just let you tell herself:

Like us, our companion animals an greatly benefit from a variety of bodywork modalities. 

Massage is a wonderful compliment to a holistic approach to pet care. It serves as a preventative measure by maintaining function and mobility already present, or as a way to bring relief to areas of discomfort. Massage facilitates the connection between body, mind and spirit, supporting an overall state of well-being.

All Paws Massage is a service dedicated to providing companion animals with the benefits of massage and Reiki, with the added convenience of having the trained practitioner come to your home.  

If your dog or cat suffers from muscle tension or soreness, arthritis, stress or anxiety, this approach is non-invasive and works on the whole body system.

All Paws Massage incorporates a variety of bodywork modalities. During a typical massage session the practitioner draws upon the benefits of Swedish massage techniques, TTouch, acupressure and energy work all with the intention to guide your pet towards a state physical and mental well-being.

Marta Banat is the founder and practitioner behind All Paws Massage. She first learned about the benefits of massage and energy work while searching for holistic approaches to manage her dog’s epilepsy. Inspired by the improvement in her own dog, Marta decided to train at NorthWest School of Animal Massage and open her practice to other pet parents. 

Call 604-700-4107 or e-mail for more information or an appointment. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Workshop Offers Hope for Unwanted Dogs in B.C.

Paws for Hope has announced a unique workshop intended to help reduce the number of dogs surrendered to animal shelters in B.C.

On July 6th, certified professional dog trainer, Shelagh Begg, will address the most common behavioural problems for dog guardians, shelter workers and animal rescue professionals.

Paws for Hope Animal Foundation, a Vancouver-based charity committed to more sustainable companion animal protection in B.C., is sponsoring this second event in their annual speaker series, following on the heels of their successful “Compassion Fatigue Seminar” back in February.

In this workshop Begg will review and address the most common canine behavioural problems in hopes of helping keep more dogs at home and out of B.C.’s overcrowded shelters.

“Unwanted behaviour is one of the top reasons dogs are surrendered to shelters, behaviour that often can be easily corrected with the appropriate information and guidance,” said Kathy Powelson, Executive Director of Paws for Hope. “In our quest to build more sustainable companion animal care and protection in the province and keep as many dogs and their guardians together, we believe it’s important to offer the public and existing animal care workers an affordable course covering the tips and tools they need to understand and help as many dogs as possible.”

The workshop is open to any interested person or team and will be held on Sunday, July 6, 2014 from 1pm to 3pm at Dizine Canine Training Centre, 1730 Vernon Drive, Vancouver. Tickets are $30 each. More information here.