Trick Or Treat

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Halloween is a great time for tricks and treats for you and for your pet.  While chocolate and candy is an obvious no go, here are some great fall treats dogs love!

Apples:  Apples contain vitamins A and C. Add apples to your pet’s diet for a healthy kick to their favorite food. It will also give them an extra juicy crunch they will love. Make sure you don’t let them eat the core. Apple seeds contain cyanide.

Pumpkin: It’s not just for decorating and dessert; it is loaded with natural fiber and moisture, while low in calories. The fiber in pumpkin may be helpful in keeping your pet’s digestive tract in good working order.

Turkey: This meat is often featured in holiday meals. Families can include furry members in this tradition while still ensuring their diet is balanced and pet-appropriate by offering pet foods incorporating turkey as an excellent source of lean protein.

Green Beans: This side dish is high in antioxidants and fiber, among other benefits.

In between Grooming

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Grooming is an important part of keeping your pup happy and healthy.  Here are some tips for upkeep in between professional groomings.

Consulting a professional groomer is important for owners of dogs that need to be clipped or trimmed on a regular basis.

Bathing

Unless your dog has gotten into something smelly or dirty, she will need to be bathed only every two to four months. Bathing her too frequently will dry out her skin and strip the natural oils from her coat.

Brushing

Regular brushing is great, regardless of the length of your dog’s coat, because it removes dead hair, distributes the natural oils for a clean and healthy coat, stimulates the surface of the skin, sloughs off dead and dry skin, and helps you become very familiar with your dog’s body.

You should brush your dog every couple of days no matter what the length of the coat. Sometimes your brushing can have a specific purpose, such as removing hair mats or helping them shed their seasonal coat, but most often you’ll just be doing a general purpose brushing or combing.

Feet

Keeping your dog’s feet trimmed up nice and neat is beneficial, not only because it looks nice, but because it will help reduce the amount of tar, stickers, rocks, iceballs, salt, etc. that will get caught in the feet, all of which can be uncomfortable for your dog.

Nails

Since dog’s nails grow in a curve, allowing them to get too long will cause the “fingers” and “toes” to splay or twist when the dog walks. This can be very uncomfortable and can ultimately lead to broken fingers and toes. Regular nail clipping can prevent this, as well as reduce the risk of torn nails. It can also save on wear and tear of your floors and carpeting.

Ears

Keeping the inside surfaces of your dog’s ears clean is good way to help prevent ear infections. Examining the outside surface will also alert you to the presence of wood ticks, fleas, or anything else unusual.

Teeth

Dogs  suffer from many of the same dental problems as humans like cavities, gum disease, tartar buildup.  Regular teeth cleaning will save you vet expenses and eliminate the stress of having your dog anesthetized for the cleaning procedures.

These Foods Can Be Deadly to Your Pet

Grapes

Consuming grapes or raisins can lead to irreversible kidney damage. While some dogs can consume grapes and/or raisins with no symptoms, it’s simply just not worth the risk.

Onions & Garlic

Onions are toxic to canines because of the substance they contain known as thiosulfate. Since dogs do not have the enzyme used to digest this substance, onions become a harmful food for them. Symptoms of onion or garlic toxicity include lethargy, elevated heart and respiratory rates, pale gums, and even collapse.

Cherries

The pulp of the fruit is safe for dogs to eat,  but the plant and pit are moderately toxic to our dogs, and can result in respiratory failure and death. Be sure to keep your dog away from cherry plants, and feed only the pulp if you’re going to share with your pooch.

Mushrooms

Mushroom toxicity is known to be fatal in dogs, resulting from seizures, tremors, and organ failure. Most mushrooms are not poisonous to dogs, but there are a few that can be deadly. If you’re dog eats a mushroom, but cannot identify it, call a vet immediately.

Currants

Currants carry the same level of severe toxicity of grapes and raisins. Even if you don’t notice sudden vomiting and diarrhea after your dog consumes currants, take your dog to the veterinarian. Just like the other small fruit, currants can cause severe renal failure.

Raw & Green Potatoes

While potatoes are often found in quality dog foods,  unripe, green, and raw potatoes are toxic to our dogs. These types of potatoes are toxic to humans as well! Symptoms of potato toxicity in dogs include nausea, vomiting, seizures and heart irregularities.

Apricots

While they are able to consume the pulp of the fruit with no ill effects, caution should be taken if your dog has access to any other parts of the plant. Like cherries, the seeds, leaves and stems of apricot plants are toxic to dogs  and can result in respiratory failure and death.

Rhubarb

The leaves and stems of rhubarb depletes the calcium levels in our dogs’ bodies. This can result in renal failure as well as other medical problems.

Apple Seeds

Apple seeds contain cyanide. While dogs typically have to eat quite a bit of apple seeds in order to suffer the effects, it’s not unheard of. If you feed them as a snack, better to be safe than sorry and avoid feeding the core.

 

Tomato Plants

The actual red tomato can be beneficial to our dogs, but the plant itself is quite toxic. The stems and leaves of the tomato plant, as well as the unripened fruit, can cause gastrointestinal upset in our dogs.

 

With all of that said, there are healthy fruits and veggies that are safe to feed your furry friend.

 

  • Carrots
  • Asparagus
  • Celery
  • Zucchini
  • Green bell peppers
  • Cucumber
  • Broccoli
  • Blueberries
  • Watermelon
  • Peaches
  • Strawberries

Keep Your Pets Safe this 4th of July!

As we prepare for barbecues and fireworks this 4th of July, Willow Pet Hotel offers tip on how to keep your pets safe and calm during our nation’s birthday.

The safest place for your pet is at home, not in a crowded, unfamiliar and noisy place. The combination of too many people and loud fireworks is a recipe for disaster as they try to seek shelter.

Cages often provide security for pets, putting your dog in a cage will make him/her feel safe.  If the noise of the fireworks makes your pet anxious try leaving the TV or Radio on loud to drown out the noise. Make sure you pick a kid/family friendly channel. A movie or show with lots of loud explosions is only going to make things worse!

It may seem obvious, but even if your pet is used to being outside, the resulting panic caused by fireworks or other loud noises may make them break their restraint or jump a fence in a terrified attempt to find safety.

If your pet manages to break loose and become lost, without proper identification it will be that much harder to get them back. Consider fitting your pet with microchip identification, ID tags with their name and your phone number, or both. It is also a good idea to have a recent picture of your pets in case you have to put up signs.

If you feel that you cannot provide a safe environment for your pets this July 4th, call Willow Pet Hotel and we’ll take care of your precious pet at our luxurious retreat.

Willow Pet Hotel has some tips to help keep your pets safe from the hot weather.

The summer months can be uncomfortable—even dangerous—for your pets. Willow Pet Hotel has some tips to help keep your pets safe from the hot weather.

Never, ever leave your pet in the car!

When it is 75 degrees outside temperatures inside your car can reach upwards of 100 degrees and that’s in the shade! Leaving  pets in your car even for a few minutes can lead to a fatal outcome.

If you think it’s hot outside, it’s even hotter for your pet – make sure your pet has a means of cooling off and unlimited access to fresh water.

Dehydration and heat stroke are common in the summer months. Imagine being outside in a fur coat in the middle of July. Cool, fresh water is vital to your pet’s health.  A sprinkler or a kiddies pool can be both fun and refreshing way to beat the heat. Try freezing dog treats in ice cube trays for delicious popsicles.

Pets can get sunburn too! If your pet has a thin coat, apply sunscreen to their skin !

Make sure your dog has access to shade when outside. Don’t leave your dog outside for extended periods of time, but when your pup is outside they should have access to a cool shady place to escape the sun and the heat. If you can, take walks during the cooler hours of the day. Either early morning or later in the day. The midday heat can be dangerous for both your dog and yourself. When walking, try to stay off of hot surfaces (like asphalt) because it can burn your dog’s paws

 

Willow Pet Hotel wants to help you keep your pets safe and cool this summer. Follow our tips for helping everyone in your family stay healthy and comfortable when the heat is on (and even if the power isn’t).

Watch Out for These Easter-Time Pet Hazards

Easter will be here soon! Planning to go away to egg hunt? Have your pup stay with us! Call to find out more about the fun treats we have to offer your pet during Easter week: (631) 243-0000.

Cat Owners: Beware the Easter Lily!

Beautiful, seasonal Easter lilies (and related plants in the lily family) are highly toxic to cats, and we mean all parts of the plant — petals, leaves, stem; even the pollen. Cats that ingest even a small amount of the plant material can suffer acute kidney failure. The first signs seen are vomiting and lethargy, and if untreated, may progress to kidney (renal) failure and death.

Fake Easter Grass

Be sure that your pet doesn’t get hold of any Easter tinsel or the the fake plastic grass we so love using to adorn our Easter baskets. Any time your dog or cat ingests something stringy like this, it can get wrapped or anchored around the base of the tongue or stomach and become unable to be passed. This can cause serious intestinal damage and may ultimately require expensive abdominal surgery. With this in mind, also keep an eye out for the cooking twine that often holds cuts of meat together!

The Perennial Favorite: Chocolate

Most dog owners know by now that chocolate is toxic to dogs. Easter is a day when chocolate abounds, and a day when children may leave their sweets unattended. Chocolate-related calls to the Pet Poison Hotline spike by nearly 200 percent during Easter week, so keep those chocolate eggs and bunnies in check.

Eggs, Real or Plastic

Discarded plastic eggshells tend to get trod on and broken, and the shards can wreak havoc on your pet’s paws, mouth and intestinal tract. Hardboiled eggs, too, can cause digestive issues for dogs. If you’re having an egg hunt, keep a written record of where you hide all the eggs, and make sure you collect any missed stragglers before you head in for dinner.

Ham & Pork

Pork roast and ham both have a high amount of fat, and your pet can develop serious stomach upset from eating fatty foods — especially small and obese pets. The extremely high salt content in ham, particularly, is another worry — most hams have enough salt to lead to neurological problems if your pet eats a large enough quantity.

Xylitol

Xylitol is an artificial sweetener used in many modern candies, gums, baked goods and products that include flavorings. Xylitol can be extremely toxic to dogs as well as ferrets, so keep up the vigilance!

 

Can Your Dog Tell How You’re Feeling?

A new study has found that dogs may be able to decipher human facial expressions. Scientists are calling the study, published in the Current Biology journal on February 12, 2015, the first measurable sign that animals can recognize facial emotional cues from humans.

The study used eleven different dogs of varying breeds to examine their reactions to differing pictures of human expressions. Using a touchscreen, the scientists trained the dogs to touch the screen for either a happy person’s face or a sad face. The dogs were shown either the top or the bottom of human faces to eliminate the possibility of responses to only smiles or teeth-baring.

The dogs were able to correctly pick out the respective faces with astounding accuracy that couldn’t be attributed to chance, the study claims. However, the researchers noted that the dogs assigned to the angry faces were slower to finish their tasks. One scientist involved in the study theorizes that this could be because angry faces can make dogs wary due to past experiences with angry humans. By contrast, dogs were drawn quickly to happy human faces because they may have recalled fond associations with belly rubs and treats.

The study concludes that dogs use their memories of real human emotions to assess similar features in other humans. This says a lot about their memory capabilities, intuitiveness, and empathy—things that until recently were not considered verifiable. However, apparently science is starting to agree with what pet owners have been saying all along!

Presidential Pets in History

Presidents’ Day is fast approaching, so why not take the time to reflect on some important First Pets?

Our American presidents have had a bizarre and ever-entertaining assortment of furry friends over the years. Here are some of our favorites!
• George Washington had a variety of pets, not the least of which was three American Staghounds named Sweetlips, Scentwell, and Vulcan. He also had two horses named Nelson and Blueskin, considered as not simply mounts but loyal members of the presidential family, and a donkey named Royal Gift.

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• Thomas Jefferson was known to have two bear cubs—even more surprisingly, he wouldn’t be the last president to have pet bears!

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• Theodore Roosevelt was known for, amongst many other animals, having a pet bear named Jonathan Edwards, a garter snake named Emily Spinach, a hyena, a barn owl, and a one-legged rooster.

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• John F. Kennedy’s pet menagerie included a flock of ducks that could often be seen waddling jovially across the White House lawn, or swimming glamorously in the fountains.

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• Calvin Coolidge and his First Lady, Grace Coolidge, had a raccoon of their own named Rebecca. They also made the White House home to two canaries, a goose, a bobcat, a baby bear, two lion cubs, a wallaby, and a miniature hippo!

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• And of course, a special mention belongs to Barack Obama’s dogs and First Dogs of the moment, Bo and Sunny! Here is Bo looking very glamorous with First Lady Michelle Obama.

FLOTUS

What are some of your favorite First Pets?

How to Keep Your Pets Safe in the Cold

Let’s face it; for many pet owners, our pets are like our furry little children. It’s not easy to let them run around outside in the cold snow, but sometimes their spirits won’t rest until they relent to the call of the wild. Here are some tips from the experts on how to let your little munchkins answer that call and still come home safe for winter cuddles.

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