Friday, May 27, 2011

Pet adoption event this memorial weekend

Are you thinking about adding a new four-legged addition to the family? While there are legitimate breeders who care about the dogs they breed and sell, there are several puppy mills that do no favors to the dogs they breed or the people who buy their puppies.  Besides the cruel treatment of their breeding dogs and the overpriced and often unhealthy puppies they produce, these puppy mills are only adding to the dog overpopulation problem in the U.S.  There are thousands of dogs that end up in the shelter, hoping for a second chance but are often over looked because they are “used” or not “pure bred”. 
As the proud owner of three mutts, I can say that pound puppies are the best dogs to have.  Most mutts do not fall victim to pure bred health issues that arise from years of inbreeding.  If the adopted dog comes with baggage, it’s nothing you can’t fix with consistent training, patience, and lots of love.  There is nothing wrong with buying a pure bred dog from a respectable breeder; after all, those dogs need a home too.  Just remember, there are no guarantees with any dog you get.  So why not take a chance on a rescue dog?
This memorial weekend, Floor & Décor Outlets, in Norco, will be hosting a pet adoption event on Sunday, May 29th, and Monday, May 30th, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. each day.  There will adoptable pets from three different rescues, one of which will be the Corona Animal Shelter.  Dogs from the Corona Animal Shelter will be available from $25 - $95 and most dogs are ready to go home with you that day. 
Even if you are not ready to add another member to your pack, pass the word along to a friend so these animals have a better chance of finding a new forever home.  
Floor & Décor Outlets is located at 200 Hidden Valley Pkwy in Norco, across the parking lot from the 76 gas station and McDonalds, adjacent to the Albertsons and Target shopping center.   

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Teach your dog to walk alongside your bike

Have you ever been exhausted from work only to come home to a dog that’s full of energy or a dog that has destroyed your house?  Your dog has been doing little, if anything, all day and that pent up energy usually gets released in a negative way.  Dogs that don’t get regular or adequate exercise can become destructive, anxious, ill-mannered, impertinent, depressed and/or overweight - which can lead to further health issues.  After a long day at work, the last thing you want to do is go for a long walk, especially if your dog is not properly leash trained.  But ensuring your dog gets the proper exercise will not only benefit him, but it will make your life easier as well.
An easy way to make sure your dog gets a lot of exercise, with minimal work on your part, is to teach them to ride alongside your bike.
Step 1: Introduction to the bike
Get your dog comfortable around the bike by walking him next to it as you walk the bike.  This will let him see the bike is not something to fear.  You can give him treats during this exercise or simply praise him while you walk.
It’s important to keep your dog toward the back of the bike, at least next to the seat. He needs to learn to follow the bike and stay to one side of it so he doesn’t cross back and forth in front of the bike.
Step 2: Start with a short walk
Like human hands, the pads on a dog’s feet can blister and tear from physical labor.  If your dog does not go for walks very often you want to start your bike rides off slow and keep them short.  This will give your dog’s feet pads a chance to slowly toughen before long or running bike rides.
This is also the time to start using commands for left and right turning. You can use any command you want, just be consistent.     
If you feel more confident with two hands on the handle bars there are a couple of dog bike leashes on the market.  Check out these videos to find out more about WalkyDog Leash, Bike Tow Leash, and K9 Cruiser.
Step 3: Kick it up a notch
Once your dog is use to walking alongside your bike, you can increase your speed (but only if your dog can handle it).  Your dog doesn’t have to be running to get a good work out, so you may consider topping out with your dog in a nice trot.
Don’t be afraid to change the scenery.  You don’t have to stay on your street or even in your neighborhood.  There are tons of great bike trails and parks to explore with your dog on your day off.  One great bike trail you can enjoy with your dog is the Riverside Santa Ana River trail.  This trail starts at the base of the San Bernardino Mountains and connects several local parks as it follows the river through Riverside.  Two of the parks along this trail are Fairmont Park and Carlson Dog Park, which are great starting and stopping points for your bike trip.  It’s a great way to get the family out of the house and enjoying the outdoors together.  For more information on the Santa Ana River trail, and Riverside’s plans to connect the trails leading to the Pacific Ocean, check out Riverside’s Parks & Recreation webpage.
Step 4: Safety First
Enjoy this new activity with your dog, but always do so with great attention and caution while around cars, pedestrians, and other bikers.  Always do your best to avoid heavy traffic areas anytime you practice riding your bike with your dog.
While bike riding can be great for most dogs it isn’t ideal for all dogs, like dachshunds or senior dogs.  Make sure your dog is physically healthy for an extensive work out like walking alongside a bike.  
Be safe and happy riding!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Teach your dog to walk on a treadmill

Have you ever been exhausted from work only to come home to a dog that’s full of energy?  Your dog either begs for your attention by pawing at you or he demands attention by chewing your shoes, the carpet, the couch and possibly even the dry wall.  After a long day at work, the last thing you want to do is go for a long walk.  But your dog has been doing very little if anything at all while he waits for you to come home.  So naturally, dogs, in this situation, get a lot of pent up energy that they don’t know what to do with and that energy usually gets released in a negative way.
Have you ever felt it is just too hot to walk your dog?  While some states have weather that gets too cold to walk the dog, in Riverside County the weather can get too hot to walk the dog. 
For these reasons and more, people have turned to the treadmill.  The treadmill has been helping humans get in shape for years, and if used properly it can be a powerful tool in making sure your dog gets his much needed daily exercise as well.
Step 1: Introduction to the treadmill
Introduce your dog to the treadmill by letting him sniff the machine, walk around it, walk on it, stand on it, etc.  You can encourage him by standing on the machine and calling him, reward him with treats, or let him explore on his own. The idea is to get him comfortable with the treadmill as if it is just another piece of furniture.
Step 2: Give it a go
This is the most critical step and where most treadmill training goes wrong.
Have the dog walk onto the treadmill and stay on this time. Make sure he is facing the proper direction.  You can stand on the sides of the treadmill with the dog between your legs, or on the front of the treadmill encouraging the dog to walk toward you. Where you stand depends on the size of your dog and your ability to correct him if he tries to jump off.
Turn the treadmill on a low speed. Most dogs will panic when the treadmill turns on, but you are there to keep him focused on walking and to reassure him that he is fine (using a confident demeanor and touch, not using baby talk).  Keep him on the machine but don’t put continual pressure on his collar, as that will stress him out and make him panic more.  This step may take a while but it’s very important to not stop the session until your dog has started walking without trying to get off.  He needs to end with a positive experience on the treadmill or he will not want to get on again.
If your dog does catch on quickly, try doing the exercise for about 15 minutes at time while he is getting use to the idea.  
Step 3: Add some speed
Once your dog has gotten the hang of walking on a treadmill you can slowly increase the speed.  Just one or two speed increases will do since he will be using a lot of concentration to adjust his own speed accordingly.
Once he has mastered the art of walking on a treadmill, you can increase length and speed of the walks to whatever duration is appropriate for your dog’s size and energy level.  Please remember, your dogs should not be running on the treadmill, they should top their speed at a nice trot.  And never leave your dog unattended on a treadmill, especially if they are attached with a leash.
If you can successfully train your dog to walk on the treadmill he will get the daily exercise he needs and become better behaved, making your life easier.  So, good luck and happy treadmilling.
Still need some visual aid? Check out his video for a more hands on demonstration: http://youtu.be/W1AIdeSEo5w

Friday, May 20, 2011

Paws for the ‘Bark for Life’ Event

Looking for something to do with your dog tomorrow?  Well you are in luck because the 2nd annual Corona Bark for Life walk will take place tomorrow, May 21st, at The Shops at Dos Lagos in Corona.  
What is Bark for Life?
“The American Cancer Society Bark For LifeTM is a noncompetitive walk event for dogs and their owners to raise funds and awareness for the American Cancer Society's fight against cancer.” –RelayforLife.org/barkcoronaca
The Corona Bark for Life is a fundraiser event for the annual Corona Relay for Life (which will be held June 11th at Santana Park).  Hosted and organized by mother and daughter team, Colleen Cain and Stephanie Hoy, to honor the memory of many family members who have passed away from cancer, including father and husband, Bill Cain.  Bark for Life also honors the many service dogs who assist cancer patients and those who have passed away from cancer. 
Why should I help?
·         Approximately 1 out of every 3 women in the U.S. will develop cancer in their lifetime.
·         Almost 1 of every 2 men in the U.S. will develop cancer in their lifetime.
·         1 out of every 9 dogs in the U.S. dies of cancer each year.
·         Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death in the U.S., exceeded only by heart disease.

By supporting or participating in Bark for Life, you help the American Cancer Society raise much-needed funds and awareness to help save lives and reach their ultimate goal, which is to “create a world with less cancer and more birthdays.”

How can I get involved?

You can support the American Cancer Society Bark for Life by donating, participating, and spreading the word.  

By donating to the American Cancer Society you can provide support to cancer patients and their families in the community.  And with the proper funding, the American Cancer Society will be able to offer a broad range of essential programs and services at no cost to the recipient. To donate, log on to www.relayforlife.org/barkcoronaca

To participate simply come with your dog(s) to The Shops at Dos Lagos, located at 2780 Cabot Drive in Corona.  This year’s Grand Marshall will be Shorty Rossi and Hercules (as seen on Animal Planet’s “Pit Boss”) and the Animal Planet will be filming their participation in the event. In addition, Mayor Stan Skipworth will be assisting with the opening ceremonies.   

                                                           
The event doesn’t stop after the walk so be sure to check out the agility course, doggy contests, vendors, food, adoptions, demonstrations and more.  The event is from 9a.m. – 2p.m. and the entry fee is $20 for the first dog, and $10 for every immediate family dog after that. For more information, or to pre-register your dog, log on to www.relayforlife.org/barkcoronaca or call (951) 283-9128.
   
If you can’t donate and you can’t participate you can still make a difference by passing this on
and encouraging your friends and family to support the cause in whatever way they can.  Every little bit helps and together we can make a difference and save lives.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Do you know how to prevent a dog bite? – Part 2



According to the ASPCA, “The vast majority of dog bites are from a dog known to the child—his or her own pet, a neighbor's or friends.” A common misconception among people is that because they are around a certain dog a lot they assume that dog must like and feel comfortable around them. But dogs have their own rules of etiquette and they give lots of body language they people don't pick up on, which leads to an "out of the blue" dog bite.  And because children are so close to the dog’s size, their bites are usually worse on the face or neck.  
Dog bites are a problem for children and adults alike. So what can you do to avoid being bitten by the next dog you encounter?

The Proper Way to greet a dog
When meeting or greeting an unfamiliar dog, first ask the owner if the dog is friendly and then ask for permission to pet the dog.  You should then ask the dog for permission to pet him or her but letting the dog sniff the back of your hand before petting the animal. Always pet a new dog under the chin, on the shoulder, or on the chest, but never on their head first.  A dog may misinterpret a person leaning over them as a dominant behavior and feel threatened.
Here are basic tips put together by the U.S. Postal Service and the ASPCA to avoid being bitten by a dog:
·         Don’t run past or away from a dog. The dog’s natural instinct is to chase and catch prey. 
·         If a dog threatens you, don’t scream. Avoid eye contact because dogs interpret this as a challenge. Try to remain motionless until the dog leaves, then back away slowly until the dog is out of sight.
·         Don’t approach a strange dog, especially one that’s tethered or confined.
·         Do not tease a dog behind a fence or tethered in a yard.
·         Do not touch or play with a dog that is eating or sleeping.  
·         If you believe a dog is about to attack you, try to place something between yourself and the dog, such as a backpack or a bicycle. Otherwise, you should stand still “Like a tree trunk” with your arms crossed over your chest (closed fists). If you or your child should fall to the ground, you should curl into a ball, with your knees to your chest and your fingers interlocked covering the back of your neck. If you stay still, the dog will most likely sniff you, loose interest and leave you alone.
Corona residents can request to have an Animal Control Officer visit your school, civic organization or church group to give an informational presentation on Dog Bite Prevention.  Visit the City of Corona website
Again, a great tool for children, and adults alike, is this educational video produced by the AKC to help kids avoid being bitten by a dog. Check out the AKC website to view the video or to order a free copy for your school or community group. They also provide a workbook for kids to go over after the video to ensure they understood what they learned. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Do you know how to prevent a dog bite – Part 1

Did you know…
….around 5 million Americans are bitten every year by a dog and 83% are children?
….50% of all U.S. children will be bitten by a dog before their 12th birthday?
….Each year 800,000 bite injuries are severe enough to require medical attention?
….If you Google “Riverside dog bite prevention” you will get pages of attorneys and law offices ready to sue for dog bite injuries?

Whether you own a dog or not, these statistics affect you in one way or another. They also point out one major problem in the U.S. and it is a lack of dog bite prevention education and responsible dog ownership.

To raise awareness for this perpetual public health problem, the U.S. Postal Service and the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) joined forces along with other organizations to promote National Dog Bite Prevention Week during the third week of May each year.  And although this week has brought about an increase in awareness, there are still dog bites happening every day, which only demonstrate the need for greater awareness and education efforts nationwide.

The beginning of your basic education must first start with some sort of understanding of dogs.

“Even the gentlest dog, if it is physically or mentally unhealthy, is in pain, feels threatened, or is protecting its food or a favorite toy, can bite,” Dr. Gail C. Golab, director of the AVMA’s Animal Welfare Division said. “Not only is it important to understand how dogs behave, it is important to understand how our behavior may be interpreted by a dog. To prevent dog bites, we need to find a common language. Finding that common language is the focus of effective dog bite prevention educational efforts.”

A great tool for children, and adults alike, is this educational video produced by the AKC to help kids avoid being bitten by a dog.  I highly recommend all parents watch this video with their kids and encourage your schools to show the video to each class as well. Education has to start with children not only to stop kids for getting bitten but to plant a seed for future responsible pet owners that will break the cycle. Check out the AKC website to view the video or to order a free copy for your school or community group. They also provide a workbook for kids to go over after the video to ensure they understood what they learned.  

Is your dog armed to fight fleas and ticks this spring? Part 2

Now that you know the threat that fleas and ticks pose, what do you do to keep your dog safe from these pesky parasites?  Do you wait until Fido has a patch of fur missing on his rump?  Well, if you want to shell out a hundred bucks or so for blood work, a cortisone shot, and some antibiotics to take home from the vet, then sure.  But if you’re a responsible pet owner, as I’m sure all of you are, then you know prevention is key!  

Ways to protect your home and your dog from fleas and ticks
 
Outside- Bugs do not know the difference of a zip code.  Whether you live in the populous downtown Riverside area or back in the hills where your closest neighbor is a five minute drive away, fleas and ticks can find you.  They can live in bushes, tall grass, and crawl spaces (to name a few) and they can get there without your dog ever leaving your property.  You can protect your yard by:
·         Having regular bug control service, such as Terminix or Orkin, spray the perimeter of your house and areas of the yard. 
·         Buying a bottle of flea and tick yard spray that you can attach to your hose and spray the areas in your yard that your dog likes to be.   This yard spray can be purchased at most pet retail stores, feed stores, some veterinarian offices, and online.
o   (Check out Vet’s Best Flea & Tick Yard & Kennel Spray) 

Inside- All it takes is one flea or tick to make it in the house and lay eggs for you to have a problem.  And this doesn’t only happen in dirty houses, it can happen in the cleanest houses as well.  If you leave the problem unattended then it becomes a bigger problem and before you know it, you are ankle deep in a swarm of fleas. You can protect the inside of your home by:
·         Using a flea and tick spray (on carpet or upholstery) that will kill all pests and their eggs.
·         Using a home fogger that will kill all pests and their eggs for several months.
o   (Check out Hartz Home Spray and 4 in 1 Home Fogger)
·         Vacuuming regularly will pick up all pests and their eggs but be sure to either use a flea powder on the carpet first or throw away the vacuum bag right away; otherwise it is just an incubator for the eggs, causing a larger problem.



Your dog- Making sure your dog is protected is your safest bet when fighting fleas and ticks.  You can protect your dog by:
·         Grooming him/her regularly (ie. Bath, brush, ear cleaning). You can even use flea shampoo or a flea comb to be more thorough.
·         Getting a flea dip
·         Using a heartworm preventative
·         Using a flea/tick preventative (flea/tick medicine or a flea collar)
·         Dietary changes (for this and other natural bug repellent ideas, check out Paw-rescue.org

Keep your dog safe and happy this spring and all year long by incorporating these preventative measures in your home.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Is your dog armed to fight fleas and ticks this Spring? Part 1





April showers bring May flowers but that means more bugs too.  As temperatures start to warm up the bugs start to come out and reproduce.  What does this mean for your dog? It means a heightened exposure to ticks, fleas, and other parasites; especially when spring is a peak season for deer ticks.
The dangers of fleas
The Small Animal Hospital in Riverside gives a little light on Understanding the Flea and says, “When a flea bites your dog, it injects a small amount of saliva into the skin to prevent blood coagulation. Some animals may have fleas without showing discomfort, but an unfortunate number of dogs become sensitized to this saliva. In highly allergic animals, the bite of a single flea can cause severe itching and scratching. Fleas cause the most common skin disease of dogs – flea allergy dermatitis.” – Dr. Doug Brum.    
Symptoms of flea allergy dermatitis (FAD) include redness, bumps, scabs, and severe hair loss due to scratching.  Fleas can also carry tapeworm, as they are a main host for the parasite.  If your dog ingests a flea they might also be ingesting a tapeworm, which can be hard to detect because they show few symptoms.  Taking the steps to keep your dog flea free will prevent a lot of trouble down the road.
The dangers of ticks   
Ticks can also cause medical problems for your dog because they can transmit serious diseases such as Lyme disease, Ehrlichiosis and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. 
“It is not the tick bite but the toxins, secretions, or organisms in the tick's saliva transmitted through the bite that causes disease.” – Charles P. Davis, M.D., Ph.D.  When ticks feed they bury their teeth deep into the skin of their host.  In addition, the blood in their stomach is poisonous.  For these reasons, it is very important that ticks are removed carefully and in one piece.  If the head of a tick is left in the skin, your dog can still contract a disease.  If the tick body is opened and blood is released into the open wound of your dog it can cause a skin infection.  
Signs of a tick bite on your dog include fever, loss of appetite, sore and swollen limbs, skin infections, lethargy, and arthritis.  Both ticks and fleas can cause Anemia (low blood count) in a dog from losing too much blood.
Because the signs of a tick bite can be commonly mistaken for another issue, it is best to check over your dog anytime they have been exploring outside or in an area that might carry ticks.  Ticks often look like a large brown flea, but have eight legs like a spider.  They bite into your dog and feed on his blood, and like a mosquito, they get bigger as they feed. By running your hand over your dog’s coat, you would feel a strange bump if a tick is attached.  Check inside your dogs ears as well since ticks can easily hide in there.  By checking your dog as soon as you come in from outside you are increasing your chances of catching a tick on your dogs coat before they have attached themselves.  Remember, ticks do bite humans too, so preventing your dog from attracting a tick is a preventative measure for the whole family.   
For more on ticks, check out this Dog Tick Guide

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Moms, Dogs, and Fiestas: Ideas to help combine the three this weekend


With Cinco de Mayo and Mother’s day so close together you may be looking to combine your activities.  Well there is no shortage of things to do in the Inland Empire this weekend, so here are a few ideas to help to combine moms, dogs, and fiestas:
1.       Take your mother to a Mexican food restaurant for brunch, lunch, or dinner and your dog can come with you.  Here are some dog friendly ideas:
               Mi Tortilla Mexican Grill in Riverside
               Gabbi’s Mexican Kitchen in Orange
               The Bank, Mexican Restaurant and Bar in Temecula
2.       Take your mother and your pooch to see a local Parade.  Corona is holding its 40th annual Cinco de Mayo parade and fiesta this Saturday, May 7th. 
For more information, check out Corona’s event webpage or this Press-Enterprise article
3.       Take your mother and dachshund to Fairmont park in Riverside for ‘Wienerfest, Wienies n Wheels’ event on Saturday, May 7th, to enjoy wiener dog races, a car show, and more.  This event is being hosted by Sunny Oasis Dachshund Rescue, a local dog rescue, so you can check out their website for more information.
4.       Maybe your mother and/or your dog is a little too tough for dachshunds, well then we have the event for you.  The 5th annual Cinco de Mayo Super Bully Show/Car Show is being held in San Jacinto (on Soboba Casino grounds), this Saturday, May 7th.  This event has it all from ABKC shows and weight pulling to car shows and rap contests.  For more information, check out BullyShows.com
5.       If you are in, or will be in, Orange County and looking for something to do with your dog and/or your mother, check out the Fullerton Market, which is open every Thursday from 4 -8:30 p.m. They will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo on Thursday, May 5th, by featuring Mexican brews in their Beer garden and hosting live musical groups playing Folklorico to Meringue for your listening pleasure.  For more information on this particular event, check out this OC Register event posting. Or for more information on the Fullerton Market, check out their website

 Enjoy a safe and loving Cinco de Mayo and Mother’s Day with your dog this weekend!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Prepare your dog for a fiesta

What are your plans this Cinco de Mayo?  We all love to have backyard Barbeques with family and friends.  We stock up on drinks, clean off the lawn furniture, and fire up the grill to cook tons of food for our guests.  What we don’t think of, however, is how all of these guests will interact with the dog.  Here are some basic safety tips to enforce at your next party to ensure everyone has a good time, including the dog.

1.  Take your dog for a long walk or run before the event.  Your dog is less likely to be hyper, disobedient, or stressed out once guests start coming to the door.
2.  Don’t let anyone feed the dog.  Giving a dog table scraps after dinner is one thing, but having 15 different people, who don’t know your dogs regular diet, giving your dog whatever food they want is dangerous.  There are many human foods that dogs simply cannot digest or may be toxic.  Be sure to keep the following foods away from your dog on any occasion:
            A. Onion and garlic - can cause haemolytic anaemia in both cats and dogs.
            B. Raisins and grapes - can cause kidney failure.
            C. Avocado - contains a substance known as persin which is toxic to both dogs and cats.
            D. Mushrooms - the toxins in these can cause shock and can even lead to death.
            E. Chocolate - this contains theobromine which is toxic to both cats and dogs.
             -Courtesy of Jane Grishaw’s article “The dangers of feeding table scraps to cats and dogs”
3.  Don’t let anyone give your dog any drinks.  Whether it is alcoholic or not, caffeine, sugar, and alcohol can make a dog very sick.  You may think letting your dog get drunk is funny but you are putting your dog’s life in danger, not to mention, potentially costing yourself a large vet bill and animal cruelty charges.
4. If you plan to set off fireworks or crackers (anything that might startle our dog) put your dog in a quiet room on the other end of the house and turn on calming music to avoid upsetting him/her.  A frightened dog will become irrational and unpredictable in their behaviors and may also become aggressive.
5.  Be sure all doors and side gates are properly closed after each guest arrives.  You may be too wrapped up in a party to notice your dog is missing.  By the time you realize your dog is missing, he could have been hit by a car, been picked up by a stranger, or picked up by animal control. 
Whether it’s a backyard Barbeque or a day out on the town, your dog would love to be included.  Just remember to keep you dogs safety in mind whenever you are around a crowd of people. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Little Extra Love for Specially-abled Pets

National Disabled Pets day, more recently known as National Specially-abled Pets Day, is recognized annually on May 3rd to celebrate the amazing and heroic disabled pets all over the U.S.  From your neighborhood to the news, you have most likely encountered a disabled or specially-abled dog at some point in your life; but have you ever stopped to marvel at the creatures who carry on with life as though nothing were amiss?  A romantic comedy released in 2010 called The Back-Up Plan, starring Jennifer Lopez, gave the world a glimpse of what life is like with a dog in a wheelchair.  Nubbins, the Boston terrier dog, played the role of Nuts, Jennifer’s specially-abled dog, and showed us that life is pretty normal as a dog and as an animal actor.  Despite what we might tell ourselves, dogs don’t dwell on missing limbs or non-functioning senses.  Instead, they continue to live their lives to the fullest as if nothing were holding them back.  They don’t ask for your pity. They don't give up on life, thinking, “I’m broken. I’m not as good as the other dogs anymore.” They continue to see themselves as a dog, nothing more, nothing less, which is why they deserve to be recognized for their inspiration, courage, and strong spirits that continue to shine despite any physical hindrance. 

“Pets that become challenged due to disease, birth flaws, or injuries tend to develop greater senses than your average pet.  Most of the time it’s as if they never had to readjust to life…and we need to keep up with them! ” –Colleen Paige, Founder of National Special-abled Pets Day.

There are a lot of disabled pets up for adoption that too often get overlooked because of their outer appearance or supposed physical limitations.  Whether it’s a missing eye, deafness, or missing legs, those dogs still deserve the chance to enjoy a happy and normal life.  So, the next time you or anyone you know thinks of adopting a dog, consider giving these talented specially-abled dogs a chance to inspire you, surprise you, and love you.


“I have no eyes to see you. I have no ears to hear you. I have no legs to run to you. But what I do have is plenty of Love.” –Colleen Paige.

If you are looking to adopt, please consider:
                        Rolling Dog Ranch (Animal Sanctuary) 

If you have a specially-abled pet, check out these groups for further support:

 



 

Monday, May 2, 2011

10 Easy Ways to Be Kind to Animals



From the beginning of time, animals have been enriching our lives, whether we realize it or not.  From bees to killer whales, animals keep our world in balance on a daily basis by doing things that we often see as insignificant, taking for granted their important contributions.  We even tend to take for granted the animal that has the largest impact in our lives, supplying us with unconditional love regardless of our flaws, our dogs.  This first week in May has been set aside for us to notice these contributions and to say “Thank you” for them by changing our own habits and implementing ways to be kind to animals.
Here are 10 easy things you can start doing in your life to show a little kindness to not only your own pets, but to animals all over the world.
10.  Plant trees, shrubs, or flowers in your yard to make birds and other wildlife feel welcome.
9.      Put out a bird feeder, bird house, or bird bath in your yard.  You can get the kids involved by building a bird house together or by letting them help you fill the bird feeder regularly.
8.       Adopt a shelter pet, donate to an animal shelter, or volunteer at an animal shelter.  Sometimes help comes in different ways, and ensuring animals are cared for while waiting for a new home can make a world of different to an animal.
                        Riverside County Department of Animal Services
                        Corona Animal Shelter
7.   Keep your dogs (and cats) vaccinated and take them for regular check-ups to prevent illness.
6.      Keep up with your dog’s hygiene regularly by brushing their teeth, cleaning their ears, bathing them, trimming their nails, brushing their coats, and expressing their anal glands (if needed). Groom your dog regularly to ensure their coat/skin is healthy, check for fleas and ticks, and to help your dog keep cool in the summer.     
5.      Spend quality time with your dog daily.  There’s no better way to show your dog some love than by giving him regular exercise, but dogs also love a good massage.
4.      Never tolerate animal cruelty.  If you see an animal being abused, report it immediately.
3.      Recycle as often as you can to reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfills and pollutes the ocean.  This includes properly disposing of old antifreeze or other toxins and cutting up all nets and 6-pack plastic rings to make sure animals don’t ingest or get caught in such hazardous waste.    
2.      Leave all wild animals in their natural homes (insects, lizards, and sea creatures included).
1.      Educate others about the importance of kindness to animals. 
Parents- teach your kids though books, wildlife shows/movies, and by example.  
Kids- teach your peers by using animal issues as topics for school projects and book reports and by always showing a good example. 
Everyone- Pass on your belief in animal kindness to your co-workers, neighbors, family, and friends and always show a good example.

“We speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.” – G.T. Angell