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Archive for May, 2010

May We All Honor Our Gift of Freedom

May 31, 2010

I planned to write a post about the many fun activities that we can participate because of those who have sacrificed so much and the importance of honoring their memory most especially today, Memorial Day 2010.

Then, I came across this video which is also about FREEDOM but much different than what I originally had planned for this post.

I hope you enjoy it. Realize we all have unique gifts.  Say thank you to those who have served.  For the families who have lost someone, keep them in your thoughts. Hug your family.  Hug your dog.  And, really savor every moment of today – focusing completely on all the gifts we truly have.  For the ones we take for granted are the ones that someone yearns for…enjoy.

Gratitude to Surf Dog Ricochet for sharing this inspirational video – thank you!

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River – Featured Dog of the Week

May 28, 2010

RIVER

River and her owner, Jillian, have been active Facebook fans and Porch Potty supporters for a while. Jillian posted some great picture of River on her Facebook album and they were just adorable! We couldn’t resist sharing them with you!

Jillian, (River’s owner) shares:

“River is a 2-year- old Chihuahua. She first started using the Porch Potty about a year ago. I use clicker training to teach River tricks and appropriate behaviors, and used this training method to teach her to use her Porch Potty. Although we take regular walks, River does not tolerate the cold, rain or snow very well. She also cannot go outside unattended due to her size. These issues, combined with the fact that we live in a second floor apartment, prompted my investigation into possible “potty” options. River and I are so happy that we found the Porch Potty. It is amazing how something like this has made both of our lives so much easier. The Porch Potty is one of the best purchases I’ve made and the customer service team is outstanding.”

Jillian Senn
South Jersey

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Kids and Pets: Pre-School Children

May 26, 2010

Pre- School Children

Teach your young children the do’s and don’ts of interacting with their pet and they’ll have life-long skills that will help them be confident and loving pet owners.

  1. By no means, should children approach any stray animal.
  2. Request permission first from the owner of the pet they wish to play with.
  3. Let an unfamiliar dog smell their hand first before they start petting the animal.
  4. Warn them not to play around with a dog that is eating.
  5. Children should not take any toy, bone or other essential foods from a dog.
  6. Teach them never to tease an animal.
  7. Kids should not run or yell when a dog is approaching them.
  8. Remind them to always be gentle whenever they play and talk with their pets.
  9. Children should learn that pets are their pals.  You have to explain to your kids that giving their animals the same treatment they want to have is a good start. Animals too have feelings and can get hurt just like how humans can be hurt. Teach them not to pull the ears of their dogs or jump on their backs.  Have fun and be safe!

Any other tips?  What did I miss?

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Taking Care of Your Teething Pup

May 24, 2010

In a lot of ways, dogs are similar to human babies. And, one of the most stressful phase in their lives happens between their 3rd month to 6th month where puppies come into the stage of teething.  Puppies experience this phase earlier than babies.  This is the period where the puppy’s “milk” teeth will come out giving way to a new set of adult teeth.  At this stage, puppies are expected to look for ways to relieve the itch.  Puppies tend to chew more to ease the feeling of discomfort.  Here are some tips to help your dog go through this phase much easier.

Dealing with your Puppy’s Discomfort

You may provide the following items to alleviate your dog’s:

a.)  Frozen Rubber Teething Rings

b.)  Toys meant for this time in your puppy’s life so it will not get damaged or be swallowed accidentally

c.)  Our use towels, washcloths or a pair of knotted socks

Coping with the Environment

A puppy that is in teething phase would tend to chew most of the time so it is best that ensure that your dog won’t chew on those things that can harm him.  You also might place him inside a playpen or a crate to keep your pet in one area especially if you cannot attend to your dog’s needs.  Remember, to use safe toys that he can chew here, too.

If in the event he experiences gum swelling or excessive bleeding, then bring your dog to the veterinarian.

Positive Reinforcement

One of the most effective dog techniques, rewarding and praising your puppy whenever he does something right assures him that this is something good.  In this case, you can reward your pet when he chews the toys, the towels or teething ring you gave him.  When you do spot your pet chewing something else, then simply tell him “No” and give him the right toy to chew on.

Keep Aware

Expect your puppy to chew on anything he can get his mouth to which can be your children’s toys, shoes, bones, sticks, and even your very own fingers.  Be more cautious at this point in your pet’s life and look and see what might be in his reach.  That will save any heartache from having items destroyed or your puppy injured from chewing on something that hurts him.

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Phoebe – Featured Dog of the Week

May 19, 2010

Phoebe

Phoebe’s photo was sent to us via Twitter this week and is she not just the cutest! Who can resist those big beautiful eyes? Phoebe is a hyper and happy French Bulldog. We’re excited to share her with you as our Featured Dog of the Week!

Jeannette (Phoebe’s owner) shares:

“Phoebe started using the porch potty as a pup. She doesn’t like snow at all and would refuse to go out in the snow. so I definitely had to find something she could use for a potty during the winter. We tried pee pads but she would chew them instead of using them. Then, I found your site and decided to give it a shot. It truly was a life saver because she immediately used it. It was nice not to have to worry about her peeing all over the house in the winter. It is also nice to know that if we run late to let her out she has her little porch potty right there for her.”

Jeannette Rodriguez
Chicago, Illinois


If you have a picture of your dog and want to share your story, post it to the Fan Page. Each week we vote for cutest dog to place on the homepage. So snap those pictures, and send em in. We love cute dogs. Who doesn’t?

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National Dog Bite Prevention Week

May 17, 2010

Today, Monday, May 17th marks the beginning of National Dog Bite Prevention Week. Based on a report done by The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), there is an estimated of 4.5 million people who suffer from dog bites every year in the United States and most of these incidents are avoidable.  It has also been said that dog attacks are the most widespread public health issue of children residing in the United States.

A majority of these reported bites are by dogs whose owners claimed that their dogs are safe.

Tips in Preventing Dog Bites

1.)  It is not recommended that you run by a dog since the natural instinct of a dog is to run after and capture its prey.

2.)  When a dog intimidates you, never scream. You also have to avoid eye contact and stay motionless until the dog starts to leave the area, then you can move away slowly carefully until the dog is finally out of your sight.

3.)  Never come close to an aggressive dog, most especially if it seems unsecured or unattended.

Ways to Become a Responsible Dog Owner

1.)  Teach proper behavior to your dogs help them engage other people and praise him for his appropriate behavior.

2.)  Keep your dogs in different room when a new person comes to visit or on a leash.

3.)  Never let others approach your kids when the dog is around.  The normal instinct of your dog is to defend the family members.

4.)  Dogs that bite are the ones which have not been appropriately socialized, get little attention and care, or the ones being left tied up for a very long time. Or, who have lived in fear or with aggression exhibited towards them. When they have experienced these things, they are most likely become biters.

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Bring Your Dog When You Hit the Trail

May 12, 2010

A lot of people who love to travel have apprehensions about bringing their pets with them when they leave their homes.  It does require some work and preparation and they’ll find all of their efforts worth it as they get great pleasure in their trip with their furry pals.

First, the preparation for travel begins with your pet’s visit to his veterinarian. Ensure that the vaccination shots of your pet are all up to date.  Moreover, you can also get hold of essential medications if your pet has to take some medicines throughout the course of the trip.

Once you have to make hotel reservations, it is important for you to mention that you are planning to bring your pet with you.  This is the best time for you to find out if they charge extra fees for guests with pets.  There are pet friendly accommodations so look for that information as you’re choosing.  Work this out of ahead of time so that you’ll know what to do when you arrive.  You would not want your pet to stay in a very strange place at the last minute.

It is also recommended that you bring the most appropriate pet carrier for his size.  The carrier should at least allow your pet to stand and lie down.  Just make sure that it is not too big as you may have troubles having to haul it around with you.

Keep your pet leashed at all times as you’re visiting a new and unfamiliar place.  Also, bring a flea collar and apply flea medicine on their skin to prevent them from acquiring fleas or ticks from places you will be visiting.

Remember to bring a water bottle with you all the time plus a bag of treats.  Pay close attention to your dog if he needs a break or just some time alone.

Last of all, be a responsible pet owner.  Always clean up the mess your pet left after him.  Bring plastic bags for when you walk him so that you can clean up around the hotel or park area.  And, it would be helpful to carry a small vacuum cleaner whenever you have to clean up scraps, hair or litter created by your pet around the room or sleeping area.

Happy Trails!

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Disaster Preparedness Checklist: Animal Safety when Disaster Strikes

May 9, 2010

Many of us are getting better at planning for natural disaster.  We know that planning ahead is a crucial key to both survival and recovery. And, even though we know that there are still many ways we are so unprepared.

Often we are advised to prepare a disaster plan for the family and household in the event of flood, fire, hurricane or any other disaster.  Yet we fail to include the whole household.  Our pets should be part of this plan.  They depend on us, too, so include their care in your disaster plan so that you don’t lose track of them or worse yet, they are hurt in the confusion.

If you are preparing a disaster kit for yourself, then you also have to arrange one for all your pets.  All your pets should wear a collar with their respective current license.  It will also help if you make use of an identification chip that can be implanted in your pet.  The kit you will prepare for evacuation should contain the list of items below that is necessary for each of your animal pet:

  1. Copies of current medical veterinary records and first aid kit
  2. Extra dishes for food, bowls, can opener and drinking water
  3. A minimum 3-day supply of food and water
  4. An extra supply of medications
  5. Current photographs and records and other identification
  6. A portable carrier and litter pans
  7. Leashes and a rope to construct a temporary dog run
  8. Favorite toys
  9. Bedding material
  10. Shelter from windy and rainy weather

Furthermore, decide ahead of time what location will be designated as a safe place for everyone in the household.  A designated safe place ensures that everyone is accounted for. When every family member, is aware of the meeting place, then no one is just wandering searching for someone else during the event.

Because your dog might be frightened, he might not behave like he normally does and that could put your family member in danger.  Make sure you discuss this as a family so that no one is surprised or hurt.  Designate one person to be the one to take charge of your pet with the understanding that their first priority is themselves and their safety.  It is a tough decision to make and this is why it is better to designate someone so the children do not jeopardize their safety by trying to rescue your pet.

This past Saturday, May 8th, was officially National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day. Although all of us here at Porch Potty believe that, it’s important to take that one step further and put a plan together now.  In fact,  when you have your plan together just make a comment below or say so on our Facebook page (http://facebook.com/porchpotty). Remember that preparation is the best way to protect yourself, your family and your pets.

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Little Acts of Kindness: Be Kind to Animals Week

May 5, 2010

It is essential for all of us to be kind to animals every day of our lives.  Since 1915, American Humane has been actively celebrating the Be Kind to Animals Week” every year.  This week we honor, focus on animals and encourage ways of treating animals kindly.

Here are some ways on how we can be kind to animals in our own little way by providing the care they require and deserve every day:

Take a Stand and Speak Your Mind for Animals

Become informed about the different policies and laws that govern animals and the impact it creates to our community, country and the whole world.  Register  to start receiving Action Alerts from the American Humane Society so that you’ll be informed on current changes and concerns.

Report and Give Details of Animal Abuse

Animal cruelty and abuse are heartbreaking.  If you have seen an abusive act or cruelty being done to animals – report the said abuse immediately

Recognize the Value of Wildlife

Be aware of wildlife.  It could be as easy as cutting the soda can plastic that binds a six-pack.  Or, you can promote this by creating a private sanctuary in your own garden so that hummingbirds, butterflies and other living creatures feel welcome at your own home.  You may find wildlife to be closer to your own space – if you just open your eyes.

Adopt an Animal Pet from Rescue or Shelter Groups

There is an estimate of 3.7 million animals that are being euthanized every year because they have no place to live.  You may help animals by giving them another chance to look brightly in their life by adopting them.

Give the Highest Level of Care to your Animal Pet

Remember to keep vaccinations of your animal pets up to date. Be sure they wear proper identification and are taken for regular check ups with their veterinarian.  Responsibility begins at home with your own pets first.

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MayDay for Mutts: A Fight to Eliminate Canine Discrimination

May 3, 2010

To shine a light on the millions of dogs entering U.S. animal shelters every year, Karen Derrico, the author behind the book Unforgettable Mutts: Pure of Heart Not of Breed, has found this first Sunday in May as National Mayday for Mutts.

This event is being made possible by various animal shelters, humane organizations and pet-related businesses.  These groups are promoting the adoption of dogs that are a mixed-breed.  All of these events will happen during the whole month of May – so, while yesterday was the “official” day – the entire month is focused on bringing awareness to the need to adopt mix-breed dogs (lovingly called Mutts!)

All animal shelters participating in the awareness campaign will present certificates of “100% Pure Mutt” to future pet owners.

Mayday for Mutts is indeed an amazing effort to eradicate discrimination toward mixed breed dogs.  The hope is to wipe out the current misconceptions by the public regarding mixed-breeds.  The “Mayday” event is happening concurrently during the first day of Be Kind To Animals Week, a separate event founded by the American Humane Association.

Besides promoting the necessary information about mutts, this day also aims to encourage the adoption of grown-up and disabled dogs.  The campaign basically aims to put an end to all types of canine discrimination.  The vision is that pet owners will be open to the fact that each dog in this planet, may it be purely bred or mutt, old or young, is worthy of the equal treatment and opportunity to belong in a caring shelter and environment.

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