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Category: Fun Articles

Treats and Snacks Made at Home – Pet Recipes!‏

Whether you’re a picky pet parent or just like baking and trying out new recipes, homemade pet snacks are where it’s at! There are so many advantages to making your pets treats at home. You get to know exactly what your pet is eating and get to control the quality of what goes in. Does your pet need a boost on certain nutrients? You can make sure the snacks double as a multivitamin too! No need to worry about weird toxins from China or any of those other horror stories you see on the news.

No matter what kind of pet you have, there is a treat recipe out there just waiting to be baked! The Kitchn has an excellent list of nine top doggie treat recipes across the internet. Theirs is one of our favorites though because no dog will shun it and it’s super easy to make!

Homemade Doggie Treats

Makes 2 dozen treats
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup melted bacon fat
1 large egg
1/2 cup cold water

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix by hand until dough forms. Add more flour if the dough is too sticky. Add more bacon fat or water if the dough is too stiff.

Roll out onto a floured surface, to a thickness of just under 1/2-inch. Cut into 1×4-inch bars and transfer to a cookie sheet. Poke divots into the bars (I use the end of a chopstick) and bake in a preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn the oven off, flip the bars, and place back in the oven until cool (this will further crisp them).

Treats can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

Joy the Baker has a great recipe for Salmon and Oat cat treats sure to get you a few purrs.

Got a pet bird or just want to enjoy watching the wild ones? Make one of the easiest treats around! So easy it’s a common kid activity. Roll a pine cone or even cardboard tube in peanut butter and then roll it through some bird seed! Hang it in your pet’s cage or outside a window and watch the enjoyment. Want to make it even more of a treat? Try adding a few pieces of dried fruit to the seed mix!

Bunny or Guinea Pig owner? Try Katie’s Smack Snacks! A delightful blend of carrots, oats, banana, and parsley no little critter can resist. We’ve made these with kale instead of parsley too and they go over just as well!

Bunnies do tricks for treats!

Do you have your own homemade treat blend? Share it with us!

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Back-to-School and What It Means For Pets

As July nears an end those three dreaded words every child fears start popping up everywhere – back-to-school. Two to three months of summer adventures come to a close leaving some parent’s relieved for their households to resume their usual routine. But what about pets? Whether you’ve adopted a new pet over the summer months or have the same family friend, back-to-school time can be rough on them. As adults head out the door in the morning for work and daily errands and children rush off to the school bus pets are often left home alone for the majority of the day.


Make sure you are still meeting their basic needs. Sometimes in the rush to get everyone out the door on time, a pet can be overlooked. This can be a problem any time of the year but especially during the first back-to-school months when routines are being formed. Your family may find it helpful to use a dry-erase board on the refrigerator to make a morning pet checklist.

Pets don’t like back-to-school time any more than their

owners do…

Back-To-School Checklist Ideas

  • Ensure that dogs have been let out for a bathroom break and quick exercise
  • Make sure cats, bunnies, or other pets have clean litter boxes
  • Fresh food and water should be provided
  • Shoes, cords, and other things your pet shouldn’t be into are placed safely out of their reach
  • Windows and doors that may give them access to restricted areas are closed
  • Necessary medications are administered

Keep an eye out for depression too. After a summer of constant play and companionship, it’s not unusual for your pet to be sad and a little lost once all the humans run off to do other things. Until your pet has an opportunity to adjust to the new family routine consider asking a friend to stop by and check on them or hiring a pet walker or pet nanny. Someone stopping by during the day can make sure their needs are being met and give them a little mid-day attention.

Make the most of the evening time and be patient. You may have had a full day of socializing but your pet hasn’t. Any hyperactivity or persistent demands for affection have to be understood from your pet’s point of view. After back-to-school as homework and extracurricular activities pile up remember the importance of making your pet a priority. Those other things are important too, but a pet is a living responsibility. If you feel your lifestyle will prevent you from providing the love that’s needed, you should reconsider before getting a pet or taking on those extracurricular activities.

Remember parents, while the pet may belong to your child, as the adult you are ultimately responsible for making sure its needs are being met. Don’t make pets victims of the back-to-school frenzy!

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Bizarre Accessories For Pets – Do You Indulge?

It can be easy to get carried away with spoiling your pet but do your habits venture into the bizarre category? Are you a sucker for buying unusual pet accessories? Check out our list of outlandish pet care owners get up to and see if you’ve fallen victim!

Bizarre Pet Accessories

  • Pet Highchair – Owners who want their pets on the same level as them have the option of purchasing a “highchair” for them! A quick search on Amazon brings up a wide variety of options for highchairs that clip onto tables to elevate your pet. If you’re tempted to take part in this bizarre behavior try to be mindful of restaurant rules!
  • Social Media– In 2015 it’s not that bizarre for doting pet owners or celebrities to create social media accounts for their pets. “Puppy Tweets” takes it a step further having created a USB device that snaps onto your pet’s collar and automatically uploads tweets from your pet to their Twitter account based on their activity levels!
  • Pet Treadmills – While we take our pets healthy and activity level seriously a treadmill for a pet seems a bit much… Taking  your pet for a walk is about more than just the act of walking – it’s the excitement, stimulus, and adventure that goes with it! If you can’t find time to walk your pet regularly don’t fall prey to this bizarre option. Instead use that money to hire a dog walker for your poor pet!
  • Kitty Wig – At some point most pet owners are guilty of putting a pair of sunglass or a hat on their pet to take a silly picture. We all do it. It’s not that bizarre. But would you buy a wig just for your cat? Most importantly, does your cat even want a wig? The fashion statement may be lost on your cat, but we’re certain that they will enjoy hunting, fighting, and ultimately conquering it at 3 a.m.
  • Pet Tattoo – Temporary! As pet owners, it’s natural to want your pet to express your personality just as much you yourself do with your own fashion statements. Temporary pet tattoos now allow you to brand your pet with a message or image. They work by staining your pets fur but before you decide to attempt this bizarre pet practice be sure to do some research into the safety of the dyes being used. Most pets lick their fur!

Bizarre Kitty Wigs

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Bonding With Your Pet – How To Build A Relationship

Bonding with a pet is an important move to make. One needed to ensure a long-lasting and happy relationship. While bonding may come naturally to many, others can struggle and don’t know where to begin. The process can be much easier when you get your pet as a baby. As they grow they adapt and become familiar with you and your habits. Bonding can be harder if you are adopting an adult shelter pet though. The saying, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”, may not be entirely true but it does take some extra effort!

Bonding with your Pet

  • Leave them alone – If your new pet seems unsure of you, don’t force the situation. Let your new pet – be it a dog, cat, bunny, or guinea pig, be the first to initiate contact. Often times confining your pet to the same area as you while sitting quietly will entice them to investigate you. Don’t try to pet them until they’re comfortable being near you. Do they cower under things? We’ve heard that the best way to bond with something like a baby bunny is to sit in an empty bathtub with them, forcing them to be near you instead of cowering under the nearest piece of furniture!
  • Treats! – Don’t ever underestimate the power of a treat! The initial pet bonding time is all about making your animal have positive associations with you. Once they are comfortable being near you, start petting them, scratching behind the ears, and dole out a treat or two. Dog and cat treats are easy to come by, but for smaller pets like rabbits, try a little bit of banana! They can smell it a long way off!
  • Consistency – If you want to form a strong bond you have to be around your pet regularly. During the bonding process is not the time for vacations and pet sitters! Make yourself available to your pet regularly and be sure to try to work them into your daily routine. Consistency builds a stable and safe environment.

Remember that patience is key, especially if you have a shelter pet that has had a rough life. Try visiting the pet at the shelter a couple times before you take them home. Just like with any relationship trust and comfort must be established before any true affection can grow!

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Cat Facts – Silly and Interesting Things You May Not Know‏

You’ll never look your cat the same way again! For loving owners of cats, dogs, or any other species of pet, we just can’t get enough of the little things that make them different. One of the greatest joys of owning a pet (aside from the fantastic companionship!) is getting to study the little critters on an upfront and personal level. It seems no matter how long we have a cat there are still things we learn that are pretty cool! Here are a few that maybe you didn’t know either!

Cat Facts

  • Most people know that a boy cat is also called a Tom. Have you ever wondered what a girl cat is called? Molly!
  •  What about a group of cats? While some people prefer a “clowder”, it’s a little easier for us to understand calling them a “glaring”. Either words are acceptable though!
  •  Did you know that just like humans a cat will favor the right or left paw? Unlike humans though, cats favor different paws based entirely on gender! A girl cat is “right-pawed” and a boy cat is “left-pawed


Things you might not know about the life and history of the cat!

  • Cat’s, like several other critters, can’t see right under their noses. If you’ve ever dropped a treat on the floor to see your cat sniff around for it when it’s right in front of their face, your watching this little fact in action!
  •  A cat is much more heat tolerant than humans. Perhaps due to their evolution out of the jungles and African savannah, a cat can be relatively comfortable at temperatures reaching as high as 126 degrees! Even higher if they have plenty of water! Please note – do not test your cat’s heat tolerance!
  • Cats can’t taste sweet things! This is probably a good thing since most sugars are bad for pets…
  • The average lifespan of a cat has been increasing over the last few years, just like humans! According to Wikipedia, in the 1980’s the average lifespan of a cat was seven years. This increased in the 1990’s to nine years and as of 2014 was as long as twelve to fifteen years, average!
  • The longest living cat on record lived to be 38!
  •  Kitty noses are famous for being moist but did you know that they are the cat version of a fingerprint? Each cat’s nose print is unique to them!
  • Cats are the most common pet in both America and Europe with men and women being equally likely to have one!

Be sure to break these little tidbits of information out to your fellow pet lovers and pet nanny! Know a few interesting facts of your own? Be sure to share them with us!

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Fruits & Veggies For Your Pet? You Bet!

While fruits and veggies for some pets are common-sense, like rabbits or hamsters, they can seem a little unorthodox for dogs and cats! It turns out that many fruits and veggies can add a lot of important nutrients to your pet’s diet that even the more expensive dog or cat foods can be missing. They can also be a great way to help an overweight pet slim down! At this point, you may be asking yourself whether or not your could get Fido to eat a cabbage? How interested is Snowball going to be in a banana? You might be surprised! It’s all about presentation and learning your pet’s preferences!

That being said, be careful introducing new fruits and veggies into your pet’s diet though. Changes in diet can cause stomach upset in some pets so new items should be introduced slowly and in small quantities at first. Be sure to always wash all produce before you feed it to your cat or dog. Pesticides, germs, and imported fungi or bacteria can make your pet sick too. A simple and quick way to clean your pets produce is to take it straight from the grocery bag and submerge it in a weak vinegar solution in a bowl or your kitchen sink. The vinegar helps to cut the waxy coatings that can make the pesticides adhere to the fruits and veggies and help them rinse cleaner!

WARNING – Always remember to remove all seeds from fruit before feeding it to your pet! Especially apple seeds, which contain small amounts of arsenic. It’s not enough to hurt a human in most cases, but in small pets over time it can cause illness. Also, beware of pits in things like peaches and apricots, which can be a choking hazard! If your pet has a tender belly avoid citrus which can cause upset stomachs, as well as grapes and raisins since they can cause kidney damage in dogs and cats. It’s best to avoid corn, onions, and garlic too.

When introducing the new items, be sure to cut them up into bite-size pieces! You may find it easier to mince them up and mix them in with your pets regular food until they get used to the taste. Who knows though, some pets love fruits and veggies! This summer, if you’re feeling like really giving your pet a treat, try blending them up a smoothie with ice to cool them off and give them a nutritious boost!

 What are some of the best fruits and veggies to introduce to your pet?


Bell Peppers
Sweet Potato
Green Beans

What about canned fruits and veggies? Try to avoid them since most canned fruits contain added sugars and preservatives, and canned veggies can contain added salt. When possible, stick to fresh produce and don’t try to feed your pet anything you wouldn’t eat too!

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Superstitions and Your Pet

Animals have played a big role throughout human civilization, so it’s no wonder we have so many superstitions surrounding pets! While a lot of superstitions may seem crazy, there are actually practical reasons for others. Check out our list below to find out what sort of old-world beliefs may have affected your pets life!

Pet Superstitions

  • The Black Cat – A black cat is probably one of the more widely know superstitions. A black cat crossing your path is a foreboding omen of bad luck to come. Black cats aren’t always a bad sign though! In England if a black cat crosses your path on your wedding day, it’s a sign of a lasting union. Keeping a black cat on board a ship was seen as good luck. Maybe because it kept the rat population down…
  • Looking For Rain? – Keep an eye out for dogs eating grass or rolling in the dust! A sure omen for rain.

  • Don’t Say Pig At Sea – Due to their cloven feet sailors believe that pigs are cohorts of the Devil. They believe that even uttering the animal’s name on board a ship is bad luck!
  • The Dog Test Of Character – Dogs are said to have the supernatural ability to smell out people that are up to no good. Superstition holds that if a dog growls or is constantly uneasy around someone, they are a person of bad character.
  • Dog Licks For Good Luck – The Romans and Greeks held superstitions that dog saliva had the ability to heal wounds. It’s also not uncommon to hear about the belief that if a dog licks a newborn baby, it will be a quick healer!
  • Grey Horses For The Wedding Day – Seeing a grey horse on the wedding day means the bride and groom will have good luck!
  • Just Talking About Rabbits Is Lucky – In Britain an old superstition holds that before going to bed on the last day of the last month, one should say “rabbit, rabbit, rabbit”. Upon waking the next morning and the first of a new month say, “hare, hare, hare” and you’ve just secured yourself a month of good fortune!
  • Good Luck Spider – Contrary to most all humans instincts, spiders are always good luck!
  • Toads for Burglars – Old thieve’s superstitions hold that carrying a toad in your pocket will keep you from getting caught. Maybe moving gently to keep from squashing the toad makes you stealthy?
  • Dogs and the Afterlife – Many old cultures believe that dogs help guide humans to the afterlife, taking them on the path to heaven. Killing a dog would mean there would be no path to heaven.
  • Cats And Cradles – There are two dominant superstitions here. The most common holds that if a cat gets into a cradle it will steal the babies breath. In Russia, however, keeping a cat in the cradle helps to scare off evil spirits!

Are animals superstitious too? Check out this to see how pets develop their weird behaviors – and it may be your fault!

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April Is National Pet Month – Celebrate With Us!

April is National Pet Month! You may be asking yourself, “What does that mean exactly?” Well it’s not just a month for pet pampering, but also for raising awareness about pet related issues! April is the month to be reminded of all the amazing ways pets impact our lives and how we can make theirs better. Below are some ways you can participate in the National Pet Month. Do you have your own April ritual to celebrate pets? Share it with us!

April Pet Awareness!

  • Support pet adoptions – Do your best to raise awareness for pet adoptions and provide loving homes to many abandoned and abused animals looking for a “forever home”. Can’t adopt one yourself? Many shelters struggle to make ends meet under growing population of homeless animals. April donations of food, treats, toys, and medicine can mean a lot toward ensuring that these pets get the best care when they are in the worst sit
  • Volunteer! – April 12-18 is also National Volunteer Week. Ask your local pet shelter if they could use some extra help with Spring cleaning or other duties! Sometimes the regular staff could use a little extra help or some much deserved time off.
  • Support pet responsibility – Help prevent overpopulated shelters by being an advocate for spay and neuter! Go one step further by raising awareness about the cost and responsibility associated with pet ownership. Informed people are less likely to get in over their heads with a pet and more likely to understand their pets unique needs!
  • Pay tribute to service animals – There are many charities out there that pay tribute to service animals; animals that were injured in the line of duty, or have reached the age of retirement. Consider donating or volunteering at one of these facilities. Service dogs range from those that help the blind to dogs that accompany firemen or police officers. Their dedication to humanity is something that deserves recognition all year long, not just April!
  • Promote the benefits of pet ownership – pet ownership has many medical and social advantages, even for those who don’t require service dogs! From lowering blood-preassure to helping build responsibility and self-esteem in children, pet ownership has tons of benefits.
  • Pamper your pet! – When you’re overworked it can be easy to get frustrated with the responsibilities associated with taking care of pets. Take this month to reflect on what a positive impact your pet has on your life. Remember not to take them for granted! Give them extra treats, make time to hit the dog park or schedule play dates! If you’re too busy, consider getting a Pet Nanny to spend some extra time with your pet! Remember, you’re their whole world!

Has a pet made an impact on your life? Share it with us on our Facebook page! We’d love to hear your story!

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Spring Threats to your Pets – Beware! – Pet Nanny

The clocks have sprung forward and spring is in the air! With each changing season comes the need to change your routine with your pet. After a hard winter sometimes it can be difficult to remember the dangers and precautions that spring brings. It’s not all about sunshine frolics in the park! Check out our list of spring threats and feel free to chime in with a comment about any of your spring-time precautions!

Spring Threats to your Pets

  • Pet Allergies – Spring brings pollen and pollen means allergies. Some pets can be affected by pollen just as much as their humans. Pets don’t always exhibit pollen allergies with runny eyes and lots of sneezing. Some do so by scratching and biting themselves. Pollen gets embedded in their fur making it a skin irritant. Be sure to brush and wash them regularly. Doing this will also help you get a start on the upcoming shedding…
  • Window Screens – Warm breezes and pretty days mean lots of open windows. Be sure that all the windows you open are fitted with secure screens free of tears. This is important to keep an over-excited dog from jumping through one in pursuit of you, or a lounging cat from rolling out.
  • Flea & Tick Protection – If this is something you let lapse over the colder months, get a head start now by in acting your yearly, vet recommended preventative treatments and procedures. Depending on your area’s spring, these buggers may be out and about before you thing. Don’t wait until it’s a problem!
  • Cleaning Threats – Spring cleaning can pose all sorts of risks for household pets. Remember to keep cleaning supplies out of pets reach! Also, if cleaning out closets or old cupboards, be on the look-out for mouse poison that may be swept out and left in the trash. Spring cleaning also means lots of furniture moving. If your pet’s a chewer, be aware of exposed cords and keep your pets locked up elsewhere until they are hidden again!
  • Buzzing Bees – Pollen’s handy ally in the assault on pets! Taking your pet out to sniff the flowers could result in a bee sting on their curious snouts! Check out this handy article “What to Do When Your Kitty of Puppy Gets a Bee Sting”  to prepare yourself for any necessary first aid required!
  • Fertilizer – Everyone can’t wait to get outside in the spring and jump into gardening and lawn care! Be extra cautious about letting your pet out to play on a fertilized lawn though. Both cats and dogs like to eat grass and if that grass is covered in fertilizer, it could seriously harm your pet. Refrain from using any in areas of heavy pet activity.

With spring also comes Spring Break! Planning a family vacation? Don’t forget to reach out to a local pet sitter if you can’t take yours with you. Pet sitters are a great alternative to pricey lodging, and can provide your pet some one-on-one personal care while you’re away!
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Memory in Animals – How Does Your Pet Measure Up?

Have you ever wondered how good your pets memory is? Does your pet seem to be a repeat offender when it comes to misbehavior? Do they seem to recall some things (like the sight of the bag of treats) with an amazing ability and then completely blank out with other things (I didn’t know that was a no-no…)? Animals, unlike humans, tend to remember things that are triggered as important to their survival. In the wild, an animal may always remember the way back to a popular watering hole, but  show no recollection of a recent event. As a result, when considering the memory of a pet, it has to be divided into what they remember in the short-term, and what they remember in the long-term.

The short term memory span of a rabbit is four minutes!

Like most animals, dogs have great long-term memories, but are unable to keep track of time and specific events like humans can. Their long-term memories for remembering their training or tricks, are created not by remembering specific episodes, but by connections that are formed in their brain during the training which result in memory “impulses”. So that their reactions to certain stimulus become second nature to them. It’s important to have an empathetic understanding of animal memory when you decide to take on a pet – even more so when you decide to train one!

Their lack of a short-term memory is the reason why disciplinary action must be taken immediately after a bad behavior occurred. If your pet tore up the house and made a mess while you were away, by the time you get home, it’s too late to punish them and expect any effect except other than making them scared of you for a little while. Lasting training and discipline with most pets must come in the form of immediate cause and effect – you go into the brier patch and get scratched or you touch something hot and get burned. Committing a “pet crime” and then getting punished a few hours later is seen as nothing more than abuse by your pet, not punishment. It will result in no change in your pets behavior other than making them less trusting of you, and trust is a key factor in successfully training a pet.

 Interesting facts and statistics about animal memory:

  • Fish can remember where for is for up to twelve days! On the down side though they probably have no idea who you are. Their short term memory span is about three seconds.
  • Dogs short-term memory maxes out at about two minutes – no punishing if it’s been longer than two minutes!
  • Chimpanzees will forget trivial information in about 20 seconds, but have a visual memory far superior to humans allowing them to recognize other chimpanzees and places.
  • Sea lions can recall frivolous things they were taught for up to a decade.
  • Ravens remember faces and voices for their entire lifetime.
  • Cats memories are said to be much better than dogs. Cats are believe to have a short term memory of about sixteen hours – maybe it’s that slow pace they’re known for!
  • A rabbits short-term memory is about 4 minutes.
  • Hamsters have terrible memories. The poor little buggers will occasionally forget what they were doing moments after starting!

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