Skip to main content

Category: Fun Articles

Millennial Generation and the Pet Industry

What does the millennial generation have to do with the future of pets in America? A lot apparently. The American Vetrinary Medical Association (AVMA) has recently released a report about their predictions for how the next generation will cause a decline in pet ownership. They regularly study generational effects on their industry. A smart move considering that simple financial statistics show an increasing amount of money spent on pets annually. If pet ownership declines, this would certainly effect the industry as a whole. A decline in pet ownership also means pet shelters at full capacity… But why are millennial’s less likely to own pets in the future?

Pet Ownership & the Millennial Generation

  • More time spent in college – With a tougher and more competitive job market out there, younger people are spending more time in college working on better degrees. Having time for a pet while your working on a degree can be difficult – not to mention pet ownership on a college budget.
  • Nomadic lifestyles – A whole generation of Americans will find home ownership an unrealistic option. Not owning a home means they are less likely to have roots. The millennial generation is more likely to move frequently in pursuit of new opportunities and lifestyles.
  • Renters – Not being able to own a home means a whole generation of renters. Renters are more likely to be confined by lease agreements that exclude pets or charge hefty deposits for them…
  • Reptile friendly – Millennials, more so than the generations before them, are favoring reptilian pets over the furry and friendly kind. This leaves dogs and cats out in the cold…

So what can be done to make sure that shelters don’t fill up and that the new generation realizes the enjoyment of committing to a furry companion for the long-term? Plenty! Millennial’s are coming of age in a different world than the generations before them and they have some great virtues that could offer some relief for pet shelters. The new generation is compassionate when it comes to affecting change and as shelters fill up, many millennials feel compelled do something to help! They are great social media activists and their ability to passionately spread the word about neglected pets in need of forever homes is having a great impact on abandoned pets across the nation! If they can’t own a pet themselves, they are still likely to put forth effort to encourage others who can, to adopt. Those millennials who do embrace pet ownership are also more likely to splurge on their pets than the previous generation. While they may not be big pet owners, at least they make sure the ones they have are well taken care of!

Expanding even more on millennials desire to affect change, this is the generation that is likely to get succeed in demanding more transparency and higher standards in the pet care industry. From dog groomers and pet sitters to food and toy makers, they want to know that their money is going to a quality product or service that is conscientiously produced. This is great news for pet owners who have concerns over unhealthy additives and a lack of quality nutrition in pet foods.

Are you a millennial (born between 1980-2004)? Tell us how you feel about pet ownership and what effects your choices for pet ownership and pet care?


photo credit: Everybody’s Darling via photopin (license)

Presidential Pets – Pets of the White House

Your pet probably plays a pretty big role in your life. Pets that have had the privilege to belong to presidents have had the opportunity to play a big role on a national level too! On several occasions throughout history presidential pets have softened the rough edged of their owners to the public eye. Some of the more exotic pets were often gifts from foreign leaders – one leader even gifted a whole herd of elephants! There have been approximately 256 presidential pets that have called the White House home. Here is a look at some of the noteworthy mentions!

Presidential Pets

  • Theodore Roosevelt had the most pets of any president with a total of 39! His large collection included: 5 guinea pigs, 2 ponies, a hen, lizard, blue macaw, garter snake, 10 dogs, a bear, rat, badger, pig, rabbit, 2 cats, a hyena, barn owl, and a one-legged rooster!
  • George Washington had 3 American Staghounds, 4 coonhounds, 2 horses, and a donkey. His wife Martha had a parrot
  • John Quincy Adams, the 6th president kept silkworms
  • Martin Van Buren kept two tiger cubs for a while
  • James Buchanan had a pet eagle and once received a herd of elephants from the King of Siam – one of which he kept at the White House!
  • Abraham Lincoln once joked that his cat Dixie “is smarter than my whole cabinet”.  He also kept a turkey, two goats, two dogs, a horse, and a rabbit
  • Andrew Johnson kept no pets, but would feed the mice he found in his bedroom.
  • Rutherford B. Hayes kept 8 dogs and was the first president to own a Siamese Cat.
  • Benjamin Harrison kept two opossums named Mr. Reciprocity and Mr. Protection
  • Calvin Coolidge had 26 pets. Among these were 12 dogs, 2 raccoons, a donkey, 2 canaries, a goose, bobcat, cat, 2 lion cubs, a black bear, duiker (miniature antelope), wallaby, and a pygmy hippo!
  • Herbert Hoover kept 2 alligators

You can read more about presidential pets and a few of their roles in their owners claim to fame here, at the Presidential Pet Museum website.

photo credit: Glyn Lowe Photoworks. via photopin cc

New Years Resolutions – Use Your Pets to Stay on Track!

It’s that time of year again. The time when we reflect on all that we have learned and experienced in 2014 while looking forward to all the potential of 2015. Whether you make New Years Resolutions every year, or are trying it anew this year, you’ve no doubt heard how hard they can be to keep. Listing all the things you want to do and change is far easier than following through. A lot of people need extra motivation to stay on track. A little accountability doesn’t hurt too! Here are some ways that pets can help you conquer so common New Years Resolutions…

Pets to the Rescue!

  • Get fit or just be more active! – If one of your New Years goals is to get in better shape in 2015, then your pet is going to love you! Taking your pet for a walk or run are two great ways to get regular exercise. Take it up a notch by playing frisky or fetch. Not a dog owner? Try working out around a cat and just see how they can get into it too!
  • Quit smoking – Second-hand smoke can be just as bad for pets as it can for humans. Think of your pet the next time you go to light up. Not only will it make you healthier, but your pet too. Plus you’ll have extra lung capacity for playing!
  • Reduce your stress level – Pets have been scientifically proven to reduce stress and lower blood pressure! If you’re stressed make it a point to spend more time interacting with or just doting on your pet.
  • Be more charitable and/or giving – Use all that experience time with your pet has given you and extend some of it to less fortunate pets. Take time volunteering at your local animal shelter. Offer to take an elderly or sick neighbors pet for a walk or a simple game of fetch in the back in yard. Donate pet items you no longer need to other animals in need. Get creative!

Do you have your own ways that your pet helps keep you on track with New Years Resolutions? Share them with us!

Gifts For Your Pet – A Holiday Guide – Pet Nanny

As the Holiday shopping season rambles on many pet parents are out there searching for last minute gifts to adorn their pet, cozy pet beds, toys and treats! As the pet sized elf hats and holiday sweaters sell out consider these gift options to make your pet’s Christmas a treat! As an added bonus the purchase of these gifts do good on a bigger scale than  your living room on Christmas morning!

Pet Gifts That Give

  • BarkBox – A subscription to this service not only ensures that you and your pet get a monthly box of goodies throughout the year to come, but a portion of the proceeds go toward helping with spay and neuter programs as well as  military dog organizations.
  • Under the Olive Tree Oil – When mixed with your pets food this oil can ensure a healthy coat. It can also help with skin allergies and boost immunity. Think of it as a doggie cosmetic! 10% of their proceeds go to local animal charities in Virginia.
  • Luv-a-Pet Holiday BlanketThis blanket is great for snuggling up with your kitty, keeping a puppy warm or letting a bunny nest around in. Plus PetSmart charities gets 10% of each purchase!
  • DJ Cat Scratching Pad – This awesome kitty toy is offered through ASPCA’s online store and proceeds from it go toward preventing animal abuse across the nation. Not only a blast for your house cats, but a unique idea!

Want to help animals with every gift you buy this year? Download the iGive app and anytime you spend money at one of the over 1500 participating businesses a portion of your purchase goes to your charity of choice, at no extra cost to you!

Also, if you’re giving a pet this year instead of buying for one, don’t forget to shop your local animal shelters first! Give a pet a second chance at a loving home is just about the best way you can give back to the animal world!

Weird Pet Behaviors That Are Actually Very Normal

If you’ve had a pet for any amount of time, chances are you’ve witnessed some weird behavior. While there may be many things that pets do that are puzzling to us humans, most of it is a lot more normal than we think!

Weird Behaviors of Pets

  • Gifts from you cat – Does your pet cat sometimes bring you dead rodents or birds? Maybe the occasional reptile? Don’t punish them! From their perspective, they have plenty of food and have managed to obtain excess, they have brought it back to their home in case you, or the other members of their “family” may be in need. It’s a cat’s act of generosity and while it may be gross, you should consider it an honor!
  • Your dog eats dirt – They don’t just roll around and nose in it, they eat it! While dirt isn’t particularly ‘digestible’ to your pet, it does contain nutrients like potassium, magnesium and others. This may be a sign that you need to adjust your pet’s diet!

  • Your rabbit eating its feces… – This one is really gross to us! Whatever you do though, don’t stop them! Rabbits have very sensitive digestive tracts that require a certain bacterial balance. They MUST eat what are called ‘cecotropes’ in order to live! It’s similar to why humans eat yogurt and probiotics.
  • Your cat and too small spaces – Did you invest in a spacious, luxury kitty bed only to have it shunned for that tiny box your Amazon order came in? What is up with your cat always picking the most cramped, uncomfortable locations for a nap? In the wild, animals are vulnerable when sleeping. Cats (and many other animals) like to feel that they are protected on all fronts from attack while sleeping. Tight spaces make them feel more secure.
  • Does your ferret steal? – Ferrets are VERY fond of hoarding. Think of them as smaller dragons who like to stash treasures away in secret hiding spaces. It’s seems weird when ferrets do so in our homes, but in the wild they often kill excess food and hide it for later. While it may not be food, it’s the same instinct that drives them to carry off your watch, pen, or other small items to their secret lair.

Does your pet have weird tendencies? Be sure to share them with your pet sitter or dog walker so they don’t worry if they notice something out of the ordinary!

Share your pet’s weird tendencies with us!

photo credit: <a href=””>lord_yomismo</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>cc</a>

Tricks for Pet Owners – Save Time and Money!

There are many rewards that owning a pet offer! That doesn’t mean it doesn’t take some hard work and dedicated care to reap them though! Anything that can help a pet owner pinch a penny or make something easier in their day to day duties is worth sharing. We’ve compiled some great tricks for making life with your dog easier.

Tricks for Dog Owners

  • Pet Dental Care – Can’t get your dog to cooperate for a tooth brushing? Try rubbing some doggie toothpaste on a chew toy (like a rope) and letting your puppy clean their own teeth while they play!
  • Carpet Stains – There are many tricks for carpet stains give these a go if you’ve found others less effective – Absorb pet urine stains by coating the stain with baking soda and letting it set for a hour or longer. Then, simply vacuum it up! Another quick tip is to work cheap men’s shaving cream into the carpet, and then wipe up with a wet cloth!
  • Pet Hair – Remove pet hair from furniture with the wet dish glove trick!  Just rub a wet rubber dish glove over the hair covered upholstery to pick it up, then simply rinse the glove off!
  • Fresh Food – A great trick for keeping your pet food fresher and more easily dispensed is to store it in a tall drink pitcher! You can easily turn the lid to keep it fresh, and then open the pour spout to measure out the perfect amount!

Money saving tricks!

  • Start a pet fund – Pet owners may struggle with extra expenses like a dog sitting service, dog walking, or even overnight pet sitting rates. Use a basic money saving trick of dropping loose change in a jar. This trick helps you save up for unexpected trips out of town or an illness that prevents you from taking your dog out for a walk regularly.
  • Cool Summer Treats – A great trick for keeping your dog cool includes using a large cake mold to freeze water mixed with chicken broth for your pet to lick! Make it extra enticing by adding toys throughout the mold. You can also freeze bits of apple in ice cube trays with chicken broth! A healthy treat while cooling down!

Share your tricks for saving money and time with your pets! Check out the link here for more pet owner money saving tricks!

photo credit: <a href=””>This Year’s Love</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>cc</a>

Children & Animals: 5 Reasons You Should Get Your Child A Pet

Children and Pets – Mutually beneficial!

There are lots of things to think about when your child (or children) reach that age to start asking for a pet. If you’re not one of those families that raised your children alongside a loved family animal,  it may be a hard decision. There is a lot to think about. It’s good to take into consideration if a child is old enough to start learning the responsibilities that come with owning a pet. Most children think of the fun involved. It is the parent’s responsibility to show their kids that the fun is the result of responsible and considerate pet ownership. Here are 5 more reasons alongside responsibility, that children should be raised with pets!

5 Reasons Children Should Be Raised With Pets

  1. Pet ownership is a great tool to teach your child about empathy, sharing and respecting other creature’s space. It’s especially great for only children because it can help them form bonds similar to that shared with siblings. It can also boost their social development.
  2. Having a pet encourages your child to be more active. This helps them stay fit and get lots of fresh air. Whether it’s playing fetch, swimming or going for walks, anything that makes your child enjoy physical activity is a great health boost!
  3. It helps with loneliness. Especially when parents may be working overtime or any other life situations that cause children to spend more time solo. Having a pet for company helps keep them on a socially interactive level. Two out of five children will seek out their pet when they are upset by something.
  4. Interacting with a pet can help lower stress and anxiety. Homework and peer pressures can lead to a lot of unpleasant side effects. Children who spend time with pets have a better ability to conquer these issues and feel confident.  Children who struggle with reading benefit greatly from having a pet to read to. A better reading performance can diminish educational anxiety.
  5. Children raised with pets exhibit less allergies as adults than those who aren’t. They also get sick less frequently and tend to miss fewer days of school than children raised without.

We encourage parent’s everywhere to do a lot of research and homework before bringing home a pet for their child. Also to take it as an opportunity to interact with your child and prepare them for the responsibility of pet ownership. Watching children grow with their pets can be a very rewarding experience!

photo credit: <a href=””>jacalynsnana</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>cc</a>

Dog Games – Keeping Your Pet Entertained on Rainy Days

While you may not have a home large enough to play a good game of fetch in, don’t let a rainy day affect your dog’s ability to get the exercise it needs! Happy dogs are those that get played with regularly. Walks in the park or a game of fetch with their favorite ball or stick are both great ways to keep both you and your pet active. Sometimes poor weather conditions can mean your dog misses out on this vital play and exercise time. While a day here and there missed due to weather may not be a big deal, winter snow storms or bouts of spring showers, followed by the sometimes oppressive heat of summer, can leave you and your pet in need of burning some energy! Most homes just aren’t large enough for an indoor game of fetch for a dog much larger than a cat! We’ve put together a great list of some fun, energy consuming games that you can play with your pet in the comfort of your own home. Practicing some of these, will ensure that your pet never gives you the ‘puppy eyes’ on a rainy day again!

Rainy Day Dog Games

  • The Great Treat Hunt – While your dog is out of the room, take a few treats and hid them about a large room or two. Invite them in and watch as they perform their ‘seek and destroy’ mission for snacks!
  • Blanket Obstacle Course – This requires you to clear out a decent sized space from furniture, but it can be super fun for both you and your pet (especially if you have children!). Use rolled up blankets or stacked pillows/cushions to create a series of hurdles for you and your pet to navigate! Hopping and zigzagging about a living room is great exercise!

Indoor games for your pet! 

  • Doggie Tag – If there’s at least two of your family member’s home, you each need to grab a pocket full of little treats and stand a short distance from each other. (The distance required depends on the size of your dog) One of you calls your pets name and then rewards him with a small treat once he comes to you, then the other calls and rewards the dog. Repeat this, each time putting more distance, objects, rooms, or even a second floor between the two of you so your dog has to race a little further for his treat each time!
  • Soccer Star! – This is one of our favorite dog games if you have a hall! Place a laundry basket on its side at the end of the hall. Take your dog to it and tell them to ‘stay’. Then, take a ball to the other end of the hall and lightly kick, or roll the ball toward the basket, trying to make a ‘goal’ will your dog makes a leap for the irresistible ball! Anyway you can utilize your creativity to interact with your dog in an active fashion on a day that finds you both pent up, is great!

Have your own unique game the two of you like to play together? Tell us about it! Is your dog not getting enough exercise because you just don’t have the time some days? Find a local dog walker or ‘Pet-Nanny‘in your area to pick up the slack! It might be called ‘pet sitting’, but sitting is far from what your furry friend will be doing!

photo credit: <a href=””>aye_shamus</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>cc</a>

Pet Facts – Expand Your Knowledge of Your Amazing Pet!

One of the great pleasures of pet ownership comes from observing the quirky, unique peculiarities specific to your pet – marveling at their differences and occasional similarities to ourselves.

Be sure to break out these amazing pet facts as a conversation starter with fellow animal enthusiasts!

 Fast Facts About Your Pet

1) Most dogs can reach speeds of 19MPH when running at full capacity – no wonder it’s hard to keep up!
2) Cats can jump up to SEVEN times their height!
3) Cats short-term memories exceed that of both dogs and orangoutangs, lasting up to 16 hours, compared to a dogs 4.
4) Rabbits can often be easier to litter train than cats. Being creatures of habits, once they pick a place to go, all you have to do is put a box there!
5) Ferrets have an exceptional sense of smell, equatable to a dog being able to smell a fly up to two miles away!
6) A common misconception is that rabbits are members of the rodent family; they are in fact lagomorphs, a unique family of plant eating mammals.

Pet Facts – Tongue Barbs

7) Cats, like humans, are either left pawed, or right, showing favoritism early on.
8) Cats tongues are covered in tiny back angled barbs, helping them to hold their smaller prey (and comb their fur!).
9) Dog and cat nose prints are unique in each animal and can be used as identifiers, just like human fingerprints!
10) Cats spend 2/3 of their lives asleep. A nine-year-old cat has only been awake for three years of it’s life!
11) The cat’s meow is used almost exclusively for humans – they very rarely meow at each other!

Pet Facts – Nose Prints

Enjoy more pet facts at the links found throughout this post. Do you have some pet fact knowledge of your own? Check out our social media and share your own amazing pet facts with us!

Happy Tails,

Pet Nanny


Unexpected Costs of Having a Pet

Are you really ready for a pet? They’re a lot like having kids. You have to clean up after them, train them, make sure they relieve themselves in the proper area and not inside, and be prepared when having unexpected accidents or occurrences. The following list are top five unexpected expenses that come with having a pet:

  • Ready to replace your shoes, dog beds and other possible household items? – Puppy teeth coming in are hazardous on shoes, dog beds, and possible other items in your house. It’s not just puppies; it’s adult, mischievous dogs too. These destructive behaviors can be occurring because of separation anxiety and/or prone to curiosity and mischief. Many pets can be trained to cease their actions. 
  • Extra vet bills– Aside from the basic vet visits and annual check-ups, your pets can have an accident with another animal (hopefully not), develops new allergies, or other medical emergencies, and a lot like life, we need to have an emergency fund for our pets.
  • No return on security deposit– Many and most apartment tenants and/or landlords charge a security deposit in advance of possible damage to carpets, walls, and other areas of the home. If your pet causes more damage than necessary, you might not see your return…ever.
  • Insurance costs– “Property and casualty insurers pay millions of dollars a year in dog-related claims. Dog bites accounted for nearly $490 million in insurance claims in 2012, which was more than a third of all homeowners insurance liability claims, according to the Insurance Information Institute. If you have a dog, your homeowners or renters insurer will want to know, and some insurers might not cover your dog or might tack on a surcharge to your premiums if it’s a breed that’s considered aggressive.”