How to Adopt a Stray Dog

Adopting a stray dog for dog lovers

As proud owners of our faithful dogs, we sometimes worry about what would happen if they got lost. They sometimes dig under the fence or find occasion to go exploring without our knowledge, but they come back most of the time. However, on the occasions this doesn’t happen, a dog ends up homeless, wandering around in the neighborhoods and streets.

What happens when you come upon a stray one? There are a few things to consider when finding a stray dog and even more to consider if you think you should keep them as your own.

Finding a stray pup

Always be cautious when approaching a stray dog. They may be aggressive or sometimes sick. Be aware of their paws and claws at all times. You don’t know them and they don’t know you, so they’ll likely be watching you just as keenly. Additionally, don’t approach an ownerless dog while your dog is with you, chances are they’ll get tangled up, which could scare off the stray.

Be aware of your surroundings even as you make the first approach. Don’t cause a scene, hold up traffic, or put yourself in harm’s way when approaching an ownerless puppy. If they run from you, don’t chase as it will only scare them even further. Instead, entice them with goodies, which you should deliver if they abide.

If you’re going to catch a dog, the best tools to use are water and food left out for them. Many dogs tend to be a little shy at first, but will quickly warm up to you once you’ve fed them and shown a little love. This will give you both a chance to examine and study one another, building that initial trust. In many cases, it’s wise not to try to catch a dog on your own, so call for assistance or back-up from a fellow pet owner or someone familiar with dogs (which is preferable).

Taking care of them 

Your own pup may be vaccinated, but that doesn’t mean the stray is. If they don’t have a collar, don’t let them mingle with your other dogs or pets. Several popular diseases, such as distemper, can affect young puppies very easily and are difficult to detect until it’s too late.

Be sure that you wash your hands regularly when handling a stray dog. This will prevent any spread of dirt and germs that could make both you and your pets sick.

Investigate

It is up to you to find out if there’s a rightful owner. Do they have a collar? A collar can hint to the fact that they’ve had a family and may have simply escaped.

While it may sound a little outrageous, you should ask them if they know where their home is (not literally). Quite simply, walk them around the neighborhood (it’s a good idea to use some of your dog’s old collars and leashes). Do they want to go somewhere in particular? Do they get excited in certain surroundings? Is someone looking for them? In most situations, a neighbor will recognize a puppy, and can help direct you towards the owners. If that doesn’t work, you can always put up “Lost Puppy” posters.

Make them comfortable

But in the meantime, you may be housing an extra boarder. So, it’s up to you to provide a good home during their stay with you. This would include a warm and comforting environment and possibly a toy to play with or chew on while you figure things out. Are they scared of being tied up or leashed? You don’t want to instill fear in your new-found friend, so begin taking note of their behavior immediately.

If you can’t find anyone to claim your stray dog, you may start considering something different. Should you adopt them? They found you, so perhaps it was meant to be. Always consider what you’ll need to do to adopt a new friend to ensure their health, comfort, and safety.

Taking them to the vet should be high on your priority list. This is to have them checked out and also see if they may have a tracking chip. If they are given a clean bill of health, take them to begin life as a new member of the family.

While not every dog that’s wandering around is necessarily stray, it doesn’t mean they all have homes. If you find a friend out wandering around, it could be a relationship destined to occur. Just be ready to take on the commitments of caring for your adopted dog- wherever they may have come from.

Keeping up with your pet supplies can be just another thing you don’t want to have to remember.  After a long day at work and going to the store, the last thing you want to do is have to go “to the store” again.  Consider home delivery of your pet supplies!

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What to Look for in a Dog Friendly Apartment Rental

Dog friendly apartment tips for dog owners

One of the most frustrating things for any pet owner is finding an apartment that will accommodate their four-legged companion. While an individual might not have too much trouble, it is often the “No Pets Allowed” sign on apartment complexes that makes it difficult for a pet owner to find a home.

So, what should you look for in an apartment? Is there something special? Is there an easy way to go about finding one? Luckily, the online world has made it easier for pet owners to connect with one another, sharing ideas and theories concerning their pets and homes. So when it comes to finding an apartment, things are looking up for dog lovers.

Higher rent?

Initially, pet owners are always going to face higher prices when it comes to renting. The rationale behind this is: more inhabitants equals more rent. While some apartment complexes will allow pets, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll approve the idea of having dogs around. If they do agree to let the dog stay, the rent will be much higher, as will the deposit. The deposit is just in case there is extensive damage or failure to pay rent, and while some owners are sure their pup is well trained, the leaser isn’t as confident.

In this case, getting out of a security deposit (larger ones for pets) will take some finesse on your part. Don’t be shy about asking your leaser what you can do to avoid a higher deposit. For the most part, leasers will want to see records of shots, good behavior, and previous tenant recommendations. Putting together a portfolio for your dog is just as important as constructing one for yourself. You’d be surprised at how differently a leaser will act towards you and your stay with them.

As an extra option, it’s generally good practice to introduce your dog initially. Choose a neutral area where the leaser can meet your dog and become accommodated with them. If you’re going to be leasing an apartment from them, it’s a good idea to do this up-front so that your dog will know who is at the door when they show up (no barking or disturbing the neighbors is a big plus).

Pet guidelines

With the portfolio and meeting taken care of, you’ll want to get a feel for what is and isn’t allowed on the premises. What are the rules of the complex? Is there a curfew? Where can one walk the dog? It is good to know this, so you don’t feign ignorance when something bad happens. Remember, ignorance is no defense.

You also need be concerned with certain topics such as the leash laws. What are the laws of the city? Pet ordinances? Does your rental contract coincide with city rules and regulations? While the lease agreement may not mention some of these, not all cities are pet-friendly. Some may ban certain breeds, such as the pit-bull dog. Be aware of what the city ordinances state before moving into an area.

Finding a place

When it comes to locating these pet-friendly areas, things can seem like a hit-and-miss adventure. Luckily, the online world has made it abundantly clear how important our companions are to our living needs. These sites will hopefully help some of you pet owners out there that are searching for a friendly place to live.

• Peoplewithpets.com provides a large network of cities that are in general pet-friendly. You can locate hotels, apartment rentals, and even find a nice park to play in while on vacation. http://www.peoplewithpets.com/
• For the most part, cities are often inclined to promote their welcoming nature to the four-legged companion. Metro Animal is the St. Louis area pet-friendly guide for rentals in the entire area. http://www.metroanimal.org/rental/main.html
• Los Angeles also offers their own directory http://www.peoplewithpets.com/aptmetro.asp?metro=Los%20Angeles
• As does Portland, Oregon at Portland Pooch.com http://www.portlandpooch.com/directory/housing.htm

While not all cities will have their own directory, many of the larger cities- where finding an apartment can be extremely difficult in general- do offer a directory to make the search easier for you and the pup to find a good place to live.

If you’re looking to rent in the city, be sure to investigate the rules and ordinances applying to your four-legged companion. Also, be prepared to pay a little extra and invest some effort into proving that you’ll both make excellent tenants on your search for a new home.

Keeping up with your pet supplies can be just another thing you don’t want to have to remember.  After a long day at work and going to the store, the last thing you want to do is have to go “to the store” again.  Consider home delivery of your pet supplies!

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Under the Seat and Standing Up

dog in plane
Dog owners who are flying with their pups

Traveling tends to be one of the most difficult experiences for pet owners. Among the various ways to travel with your pet, air travel presents the most difficulty. Unfortunately, when you have to get somewhere fast, flying is your best option.

However, there are conditions for flying with a pup that you and every dog owner should consider before scheduling an air travel. Although, you need to remember that these conditions may differ from airline to airline. This is especially true for international regions, such as Canada, Mexico, Europe, and Australia. Therefore, you need to check with your choice airline for specific information.

9 Useful Tips on Air Travel with Your Dog

1. You need to acquire a health certificate for your dog.

All airlines require an array of different limitations, most of which have a few things in common. The first and most obvious is to have a clean bill of health certification from your veterinarian that was dated within the last thirty days.

2.  You have to consider the weight and size limitations.

Weight restriction for pets is about 10 pounds. This limits the cabin to smaller breeds. Do keep in mind that weight limitation may also include your dog and his kennel. This is often limited to approximately 20 pounds.

Dog carriers must be designed to fit under the seat in front of you. On average, it should be about 9 inches in height and 18 inches across. Virgin America has one of the highest dog weight limits, and reasonable size accommodations. It allows dogs up to twenty pounds to enjoy a cabin flight.

3. Your pup must be able to stand up and turn around in his carrier.

The rule designating your dog’s ability to stand up and move around is to ensure that your pup is comfortable. After all, you wouldn’t like it if you had to travel in a tight sardine can.

4. You need to hand-carry bare essentials for your dog.

Since you are bringing your pup with you, this means that it’ll likely be replacing your carry-on bag. This means you’ll have to check-in any other luggage you have. So, be aware of what you will need during your air trip – including water, food, and potty bags.

5.  There is often an extra cost for bringing your pup into the cabin.

You don’t have to pay extra for your average carry-on bag though. The extra fee varies radically but often ranges from $75 to $150. It is highly recommended that you shop around for the best deal.

6. Airlines may blackout dates for pet travel during the winter months.

This could be done unexpectedly, which means that last-minute plans aren’t always going to work out the way you wanted them to.

Many airlines are working to become more accommodating to pet owners and their furry friends. There are limitations to how much they can handle though. This means that there is a set number of pets per flight for many of these airlines. Jet Blue, for example, only allows four pets per flight. This is yet another reason why a pet owner needs to plan as far ahead as possible to make sure their pup can make the flight.

7. Many flights will not allow dogs to fly to Hawaii. 

Be sure you take into account your destination when you are planning your trip – especially if you’re traveling to another country, such as the UK, Europe, and even Canada. However, Air Canada has a dog-friendly pet policy.

8. Certain breeds are not allowed.

Snub-nosed pups have a difficult time breathing in certain atmospheric pressure. This is probably why they are not allowed. Be sure your pup can handle the flight safely.

9. Don’t forget to check your local and landing airport for dog handling procedures.

There may be certain areas and locations where you’ll need to go or travel through (where you may be able to feed and care for your dog’s needs).

Flying with your pup can be an adventure and a difficult challenge at the same time (unless you properly prepare for it). If you’re traveling with your pup, be sure to call ahead and schedule a flight early enough to ensure you don’t run into any hitches at the airport. Just remember that your dog isn’t an item you can stuff and cram under the seat in front of you. Make sure your dog will fly comfortably so he can enjoy the journey and his time with you.

Keeping up with your pet supplies can be just another thing you don’t want to have to remember.  After a long day at work and going to the store, the last thing you want to do is have to go “to the store” again.  Consider home delivery of your pet supplies!

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