Archive for March, 2010
Getting a new puppy can be tricky. You may ask yourself these questions: How do I find a great puppy and, once I find him, what do I do next?
The first thing you have to do is to look for a puppy. One way is to adopt from the Humane Society, ASPCA, or pet finders (On the web at ww.petfinders.com) . These places have puppies to adults. Most of the time they come spayed or neutered and often have some, if not all, of their vaccines. The downside is you often don’t know much about the history or the personality of the pet. Sometimes these agencies do temperament testing or have trainers that come in and evaluate the pets up for adoption to determine what type of home may be best. We have worked very closely with the local Humane Society in helping find homes for pets. We usually have one cat up for adoption in our cat condo that comes from the Humane Society.
If you are looking for something different, such as a purebred puppy, then you may wish to look at breeders but you need to be careful. Sometimes things are not what they appear to be. Some puppies sold by breeders may not have been bred from the person you are buying the pet from, rather they are a middle man for the breeder. This should be a red flag, that you might be buying from a puppy mill. A breeder should have the parents. They should let you see their facility and the parents of the puppies. You want to make sure the pets are in a clean, safe environment. Ask him/ her how long they have been breeding and don’t forget to ask for references. I find most good breeders love to talk about the breed and ask you questions to find out if you will be a good pet owner. If the first thing they tell you is price and date of whelping, they probably are not the right breeder for you.
One other thing to consider is budget. Pure breed pets are expensive and they often have problems that may be specific to their breed. Pet insurance is something to consider if you are buying a pure bred puppy. Good pet insurance will run about $30-$40 a month. We have brochures on several insurance companies that we recommend.
One other sources for puppies is pet stores. Most of the time I would say stay clear of pet stores for puppies because they are at high risk of coming from puppy mills. To that there is one exception, Bark Avenue Puppy Boutique, a puppy store in Red Bank, has designer puppies for sale. What makes them different is that they use specific breeders that they have interviewed and screened before buying from. They usually only have a handful of puppies on the premises at one time. They always maintain a clean environment and have built a strong reputation for quality puppies.
Okay so, now that we have that out of the way, let’s discuss choosing the right puppy. Ideally you would like to find the one with the most laid back personality. Not the one that looks sick or hiding in the corner, but not jumping all over you either. The personality in the middle of these two is best. If you can pick up the puppy, see how they take to being held. Do they growl or do they let you hold them? Try to choose a breed of dog that suits your lifestyle. If you are not the most active, try not to choose a pet that needs an active lifestyle. Certain breeds are very high energy and require a lot of time.
Make sure the pet has no eye or nasal discharge, that the pet isn’t coughing and that he/she is eating well. Check to see that the pet has received the vaccines that are appropriate for their age. Make sure you find out what they are feeding the pet and make sure you get enough food to tide you over until you switch the food to what you desire or continue giving the food that they are on.
Okay, now that have your new baby, time to bring them to the veterinarian. You only have a short time period to have them checked out to make sure they are free from disease or congenital defects. If you don’t , you could miss out on protecting the rights of you and your pet. When you make an appointment for your first puppy visit make sure you’re not in a rush as new patient visits take some time, and don’t forget to bring a “poop” (Fecal Sample) with you. Also important, do not take your puppy out and about the neighborhood or to the park or pet stores until you make sure all his shots have been given. If he/she does not have all their shots they are not protected against many serious diseases.
Lets not forget the key to all of this patience. Often times you may question why you did this to yourself usually after they eat your favorite pair of shoes. Remember this stage is not forever and with time and training you will not regret your decision.
- Every Year, 1.5 Billion dollars is spent on pet food-four times the amount spent on baby food.
- Cats have better memories than dogs. Tests conducted buy the University of Michigan concluded that while a dogs memory lasts no more than 5 minutes, a cat’s can last as long as 16 hours……. That might explain why your cat is still angry at you when you get home from the vet’s office.
- Cats have more than one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs have only about ten.
- A cat’s sense of taste is keener than that of a dog…Okay that one I think we all knew.
- The phrase “raining cats and dogs” originated in 17th century England. During heavy downpours of rain, many of these poor animals, unfortunately, drowned and their bodies would be seen floating in the rain torrents that raced through the streets. The situation gave the appearance that it literally had “rained cats and dogs”. (Maybe not such a fun fact)
- Dogs have about 100 different facial expressions, most of them made with the ears.
- Using their swiveling ears like radar dishes, experiments have shown that dogs can locate the source of a sound in 6/100ths of a second.
- The common belief that dogs are color blind is false. Dogs can see color but the color scheme is not as we see. They distinguish between blue, yellow, and gray, but do not see red or green.
- Contrary to popular belief, dogs do not sweat by salivating. They sweat through the pads of their feet.
- Every known dog except the Chow has a pink tongue-the chow’s tongue is jet black.
- An American Animal Hospital showed that 33% of dog owners admit that they talk to their dogs on the phone or leave them messages on answering machines while away. What would be more impressive is them returning our calls…
- An estimated 1 million dogs in the United States have been named the primary beneficiary in their owners will. (Okay that is Weird)
- Cats are the only domestic animals that walk directly on their claws, not on their paws. This method of walking is called “digitgrade”. When cats scratch furniture, it isn’t an act of malice. They are actually tearing off the ragged edges of the sheaths of their talons to expose the new sharp ones beneath.
- Cats have four rows of whiskers and can be right pawed or left pawed.
- A cat’s tongue is scratchy because it is lined with papillae-tiny elevated hooks that help to hold prey in place.
- Cats respond to names that end in “ee” sound. And they love to hear the sound of their own name and your voice, so talk to them often.
- All cats are born with blue eyes.
- Cats can see up to 120 feet away. Their peripheral vision is about 285 degrees.
Many of you have heard of Science Diet’s prescription diet J/D which stands for Joint Diet. What Hills figured out is that Omega Fatty Acids, if fed in the right balance and if in great enough quantities, have excellent anti-inflamatory properties. They are great for the heart, kidneys, and coat, just ask our staff. Currently several of our pets eat J/D. It has been used for allergies (inhallant) and joints. Those who may want to continue to feed there own diet can even use it as a supplement. Just 3/4 cup of J/D has 9 grams of omega fatty acids. There are other good points that it is not a fatty food. So what does this all have to do with my statement? Well, now Hills is releasing Feline J/D. For those cats that have poor hair coats and joint problems, this new option is available. We will be recieving Feline J/D in the next few weeks…
Cesar Millan was at Count Basie Theatre on Sunday, February 28, 2010. Eighteen of our Staff attended the show and, while he did not unveil the secrets we all thought he would, we had a great time. What I learned from his advice was that, to have an integrated relationship with our dog friends, we need to have a relationship that benefits them and us. We have to satisfy their needs through exercise. Dogs need to release their energy in constructive ways so they do not turn toward bad behavior. We also need to discipline them and give them rewards when they do behave the way we want. Cesar told some humorous stories that I think we could all relate to. An example is when Cesar said “one time a client said to me well he barks until I give him a cookie”. ”My response was “so you reward him for barking”. The client got the message that ”It is best not to reward our loved ones for the behaviors we want to eliminate”.