Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tips For Preventing Flea & Tick Infestation

With the nicer weather brings great opportunity to get outdoors with your pets. This also brings a high chance of dealing with the frustrations of flea and ticks. Not only is it frustrating for you and uncomfortable for your pet, but these pesky little parasites can also causes illnesses and diseases. While it's practically impossible to avoid them altogether, the PetCot Company has a list of things that you can do to prevent and treat for fleas and ticks - take a look!

Bathe Regularly

Bathing your pet with a shampoo or flea/tick dip that contains medicated ingredients will typically kill ticks and fleas on contact. While this can labor intensive, it is an inexpensive method of protection and prevention. Since this doesn't necessarily do well to prevent ticks and fleas, you'll need to repeat the process frequently as the effective ingredients won't last as long as a topical or oral treatment.

Use a Topical Treatment

One of the benefits of going with topical treatments is that they come in many forms, such as powders, sprays, spot-on treatments, and collars. Using an over the counter spot-on medication that you purchase from your veterinarian, pet store, or online can be a very effective method for controlling both ticks and fleas. These medications are effective at keeping parasites at bay for up to a month. Collars that repel ticks and fleas are an additional preventive you can use, though they are mainly only useful for protecting the neck and head. Tick and flea powders work to kill and repel. These can also be used where your pet sleeps and around the home. Sprays kill ticks and fleas quickly and provides residual protection. Sprays can be used in between shampoos and dips, and when you are planning to spend time out in wooded areas.

Look into Oral Solutions

Oral medications can work to kill both ticks and immature fleas and will disrupt the lifecycle of fleas. They are easy to give and you won’t have to be concerned about small children and cats coming into contact with dogs immediately after application, as you might with topical treatments. These oral solutions are available in daily or monthly doses. Monthly treatments typically require a veterinarian prescription, while the daily oral solution may be purchased over the counter.

Treat Your Home & Lawn

Keeping your lawn, bushes, and trees trimmed back will help reduce the population of fleas and ticks in your backyard. If there are fewer areas for these parasites to live and breed, there will be fewer of them to be concerned with. If you still have a problem, consider using one of the various household and yard sprays or granular treatments that are available from your veterinarian, pet store, or local garden center. Just be careful when using these products, as they can be harmful to animals, fish, and humans. If you have a severe problem or you are concerned about the proper handling of these chemicals, you might want to consider hiring an exterminator to apply yard and area sprays to control the ticks and fleas.

Prevent Bedding Infestations

Fleas love to nest in the same place your pet does to keep feeding on him or her. When your pet has fleas, the larvae and eggs fall off your pet and land wherever your pet spends their time at. This means that most likely your pet's bedding is the perfect place for larvae to thrive. To control flea infestation in your pet's bedding you should wash and dry it thoroughly in the hottest temperatures possible without damaging it, and keep the area well swept. OR rather than battling with constantly cleaning and treating cushioned bedding, invest in an easy to clean, hygienic premium raised dog bed! These premium raised pet beds protect dogs from the breeding ground of ticks and fleas.

As you can see, there are many different ways to treat and prevent fleas and ticks. Don't forget, consistency is key. Even one missed treatment with a flea and tick control can set the stage for infestation that takes months to resolve, or put your pet at greater risk of exposure to illness or disease. So be sure you treat your pet now and continue taking preventative measures throughout the rest of the year. And don't forget to get a PetCot premium raised pet bed to ensure your pet's comfort and health! 

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Thursday, May 18, 2017

7 Tips for Traveling with Your Pet

Summer is almost here! That means families are gearing up for trips and vacations. If you're thinking about taking your pet with you on your next family vacation, you'll want to properly prepare for traveling with your pet. The PetCot Company has come up with 7 tips to help make traveling with your pet easy and enjoyable.

Prepare to travel with your pet with these handy tips:

1. Update your pet's ID information

Before hitting the road with your beloved pet, make sure to have a plan for the worst case scenario. It's very easy for your pet to become anxious or restless while riding in the car for extended periods of time. This can lead to your pet uncharacteristically making a run for it when you open a door. Be prepared for this possibility by making sure their ID tags or microchip is up to date. Check that the contact information is accurate and legible. Also, keep a copy of your pet's medical records in your vehicle just in case.

2. Exercise before the trip

You know you're going to be in the vehicle for a while, so plan ahead to give your pet a little extra exercise time before heading out. This will help to prevent them from being restless during the ride, and will more than likely help them to sleep during the beginning of the trip. Don't forget to give them plenty of time to stretch and exercise them during stops.

3. Make proper stay arrangements

When traveling overnight keep in mind that not all lodging facilities allow pets. Before taking off, book pet-friendly hotels, and look for destinations that allow you to take your canine companion or feline friend. This will eliminate the headache of trying to find last minute lodging when you're tired and ready to get off the road.

4. Plan plenty of rest stops

Just like people, pets need to take a break from the road every now and then. While planning out your trip, look into good rest areas that are pet friendly and safe. Plan to stop at least every few hours to let your pet stretch and relieve themselves. This is a great time to take your pet for a brisk walk to exert some of that pent up energy so they don't get frustrated in the car.

5. Prepare for pets with anxiety

Many pets experience anxiety when traveling if it's not a common thing for them. To help your pet's anxiety, discuss getting a prescription to help with anxiety with your vet ahead of time. If you prefer a non-prescription approach, you can also look into anxiety reducing products such as a Thundershirt, or bring along a familiar blanket or their favorite toys to help keep them calm.

6. Don't leave your pet alone in the car

You're going to need to stop on the way to grab a bite to eat or fuel up. It may seem like a quick pit stop to you. However, heat is a serious hazard. On an 85-degree day, even with the windows slightly open, the temperature inside your car can reach 102 degrees in just 10 minutes. Temperatures like these can cause irreversible organ damage or death. Have a plan in place to ensure your pet isn't left alone in the vehicle by either planning out rest stops where you can take your pet with you, or choosing drive through stops so you can remain in your vehicle to keep it running and cool.

7. Secure your pet while driving

While it may be tempting to let your pet free roam on your travel, this is not a good idea. Secure your pet in a travel kennel or pet seat belt to keep them restrained to the back seat or cargo area. Not only will this keep them from unexpectedly jumping in your lap and possibly causing an accident, but it will keep them safe from extensive injury in the event of a collision. The PetCot Company has waterproof crate pads to make your pet's travel in a kennel comfortable.

With these 7 tips for traveling with your pet, you'll be hitting the road to your next vacation destination with your pet in no time! Don't forget to order a waterproof crate pad for your pet's travel kennel. The pad is constructed with orthopedic foam to allow for optimum comfort, as well as durability. It is easy to clean, fast drying and UV resistant, making it a perfect choice for traveling with a pet. Visit our website TODAY to get your PetCot products ordered in time for your next road trip!

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Essential Commands To Train Your Dog - Part 2

As promised, the PetCot Company is delivering part 2 of our list of essential commands to train your dog. These are commands we feel are necessary to keep your dog safe while out in public, and to keep those around you safe as well. For many reasons, training your dog to have good manners and to listen when commanded is so very important. Too many mishaps can come into play if your dog is not trained these essential commands that could save their life. So without further ado, here are the next 3 essential commands the PetCot Company suggests training your dog.

Leave it
Dogs by nature are curious. They will get into anything they can if given the opportunity. That's why we cannot stress enough the importance of training the "leave it" command. Many dogs have short attention spans or have one-track minds. Once they've got their eyes set on something they really want, it's tough to break through that barrier. By teaching them to "leave it", you will have an easier time redirecting their attention to you instead of whatever it is they're after. Start out by holding a treat in your hand palm closed in front of your dog's nose. When the dog tries to get to the treat in your hand, say "leave it" and pull away.

As soon as your dog's attention has broken away from the treat to you, praise them. If you praise with treats, do not use the hand you're training with. That treat is off limits. Once your dog has mastered leaving the treat in your hand alone, you can step up the difficulty level. Hold the treat out palm open so your dog can see it. As soon as your dog goes for the treat, close your palm and say "leave it." Go through the same process - praise when they revert their attention to you. Once your dog has mastered "leave it" from an open palm, try putting a treat on the floor and walking your dog by on a leash. Anytime the dog goes for the treat, say "leave it" and redirect them away from the treat. As soon as they redirect their attention without reminder or assistance, praise.

The purpose for the "heel" command is to teach your dog to stay by your side. When they are heeling, they are not permitted to walk ahead or behind you, and they are to stop when you stop and walk when you walk. This skill is important because it reminds your dog that you are in charge. It's also extremely beneficial because your dog will not be pulling you along during walks and putting you in a position in which you can't control.

Put your dog on a leash and position them on your left hand side. Have them sit and stay until you're ready to walk. Keep a few treats in your left hand for praising. As soon as you're ready to walk say "heel" and start walking forward. If your dog stays at your side and walks at your pace, give them a treat every few steps. If your dog begins to veer off, call their attention back to you, make them sit and stay and start again once their focus is on you.

After a few sessions of doing this, keep the treats in your pocket instead of your hand and use more verbal praise than treats. Eventually, your dog will learn to "heel" without being rewarded by treats. This is an advanced command and will take time and patience to learn, so just stick with it and your efforts will pay off.

The "wait" command is a great command that you can train your dog to do that will come in handy on several occasions. Whether you're getting them out of the car at the vet's office, getting ready to take them on a leash walk, trying to leave for work in the morning, or even just letting them out of their crate, this command can be a lot of help in controlling your dog's excitement.

To start with training the "wait" command, you first need to eliminate bolting as an option for them. So before opening a door, leash confine, crate, or put your dog in a separate room. That way your dog understands that bolting out the door when it opens is NOT an option. Once you're ready to start on "wait", leash your dog, walk to the door, and ask them to sit. As soon as they do, reach for the door handle. If your dog stands up, let go of the handle and ask them to sit. This may take a few tries. Once you can turn the doorknob without your dog standing, you can give the "go ahead" and reward them by taking them for a brief walk so they don't get frustrated with this exercise.

As you're working on this, extend the time that your dog has to stay seated before releasing them to "go ahead," and work towards being able to open the door completely without your dog taking off before being released with "go ahead." Once your dog has this command down for going outside, it'll be easy for you to use it when crating your dog, and when placing your dog in their safe place such as their premier raised dog bed.

With last week's blog and this week's blog, you've now got 7 essential commands to train your dog. Not only will training your dog these commands make your life easier, but they will also help to keep your dog safe. When training your dog, the PetCot Company encourages positive reinforcement and rewarding. To reward your pet for a job well done, visit our website to get a premier raised dog bed for your fur baby today!

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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

4 Essential Commands To Train Your Dog - Part 1

Everyone enjoys watching dogs do fun tricks such as shake and roll over, but it's the essential tricks you teach them that are the most meaningful. Proper training of some essential commands can prevent your dog from getting in some very avoidable predicaments - such as being hit by a car, attacked by another dog, or becoming lost. The Petcot Company wants to share some of the basic commands you should teach your dog to prevent any mishaps.

This is the most basic command that can be taught, and is also a great starting point. Start by working with your dog in the privacy of your home where you are more likely to have their full attention. Sit next to your dog and hold a treat above their nose. As you say "sit", move the treat directly over their head toward their hind end. They should lower their hind end as their head raises to try to reach for the treat. Once their bottom is sitting give them the treat and praise them for "good sit!" For smaller wigglier dogs, you may have to guide their bottom to the floor, do this gently and immediately praise them as soon as they sit. Repeat this multiple times a day. As your dog begins to respond more quickly, start to request them to sit without treats, just praise.

Teaching your dog the down command may be a little harder than sit, especially if the dog is younger and more playful. However, it's an extremely important command for them to know and respect. From the sit position, this will be a somewhat easy transition for your dog to grasp. Once they're in the sit position, hold a treat in front of their nose and move it towards their feet while saying "down". Hold your palm loosely closed with the treat secured so your dog can smell it but can't get it. Let your dog follow the treat all the way to the floor and rest your closed hand on the floor until they lay down. Once they lay down give them the treat and praise "good down!" Repeat this multiple times a day each day until they lay down without having to follow your hand.

If your dog has the sit or down command mastered, either of these positions are a good place to start. Have your dog sit or lay down, then slowly back away a few steps. If your dog stays positioned, praise them ("good stay!"), and keep backing up. The instant your dog gets up to come to you, walk back to them and say "sit, stay" and start over. Work up to walking 10 feet away and them staying seated for 20 seconds, then 30, then 60 and so on. Once they've mastered that distance and length of time, move further away. Soon you should be able to leave the room and your dog should stay where they were told to "stay."

It's important to familiarize your dog with the "come" command as early as possible to avoid a detrimental mishap. Keep positive associations with the command so that no matter what has your dog's attention, when you say "come" they obey. Have a friend help you with this training. While you are sitting across the room from your friend, have them lightly restrain your dog, and then excitedly repeat "come Fido" until you have the dog's attention. Once they run to you praise them verbally, give them a treat and take a minute to play tug-o-war with their favorite toy as reward. Practice this back and forth so they associate "come" as a very good thing. Once you feel comfortable with their response, start adding distractions into the training.

While training these essential commands to your dog, it's important to remember that these will likely take some time for your dog to learn. With lots of patience, repetitiveness, and positive reinforcement, you can succeed in training any dog these basic commands. While it's best to train them as early as possible, don't let that stop you with your older dogs - after all, old dogs can learn new tricks too!

Don't forget that every good dog deserves to be pampered. Check out our website today to get your dog an elevated dog bed. Your dog will love the comfort it provides. You will love the minimal maintenance it requires. With a premier raised dog bed you can spend less time cleaning dog beds and more time training these essential commands. Happy training!

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