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Everything You Need to Know About Pet Nail Trims
Nail trims are an essential part of your pets health. It’s an easy thing to overlook primarily because it’s not something new pet owners usually think about when getting a new pet. Most new owners know that they need to get their pet vaccinated and have regular veterinary check ups to maintain their pets health. But the more regular maintenance like teeth brushing and nail trimmings often go unnoticed.
What You Need to Know
The importance of having your cat or dogs nails trimmed to a healthy length usually becomes apparent when one of two things happens. Either you or a family member are injured by the overgrown nails, or the pet themselves are injured. For the most part, nails that are a little too long won’t be very noticeable. You may be able to hear some clicking sounds when they walk on certain surfaces but other than that, there’s not very many signs. But in the event that they catch a long nail on human skin, a carpet, or any other surface, you’ll soon realize why it’s so important to have them properly trimmed.
A nail that gets caught can be ripped out completely. If you’ve ever experienced this in your lifetime, then you know that it is extremely painful. To make matters worse, they can also become dirty and infected much easier than ours because they’re often touching more surfaces with the open wound. This means the a vet trip is usually in order. Sometimes the nails will partially break, requiring local anesthesia to numb the area and in some cases they can end up needing the remaining nail pulled out.
Prevention is KEY
Although these are scary scenarios to have to picture, the good news is that it’s all completely preventable! Keeping up with their regular trimmings will immensely decrease the risk of injury. Most vets recommend about 4-6 weeks in between trims. A great way to tell if it’s time for a trim is by examining your pets nail yourself and looking at the distance between the quick and the end of the nail. You’ll want to keep this as short as possible.
You should also check with your vet to ensure that you’re feeding a high quality diet for your pet. Just like with humans, what they eat affects their overall health. Vitamins and minerals are what forms health nails and without these nutrients in the adequate amounts, you may notice brittle nails that are easily split or broken. If your pet have issues with brittle nails, you can ask your vet about potentially adding fish oil to their diet as this will help with their coat and nails.
Know Your Specific Pet’s Schedule
Whether you have a cat, dog, or guinea pig, they’re likely to develop a pretty regular grooming schedule. Once you know what it is, it’s up to you to stick to it. We recommend putting a reminder on your phone or calendar to help prompt you to successfully follow the schedule. You can easily trim their nails at home or hire a cat or dog trimming service to help you get the job done! In either case, maintaining a regular schedule should always be a top priority.
Summer Safety for Dogs!
In the upcoming weeks in many areas of the US the majority of people will be experiencing temperatures that can be too dangerous for your pet. However, there are lots of of tips and trick to beating the heat that we’ll cover today!
Most pet owners know that leaving a dog in the car while you go grocery shopping or run errands can be extremely dangerous for your dog. But in certain areas like Denver, it’s common for us to have our dogs go with us everywhere. Making it difficult when we’re faced with obstacles like needed to go to the store but already having our dog in the car from a hike we did that morning. There’s no one size fits all solution here, but the goal is to cover as many alternative options as possible so that you’ll have some viable solutions when the time comes.
The best way to avoid having your dog in the car in summer is to plan ahead as much as you possibly can. Think about your day plans and adjust as needed to ensure you pup won’t need to be in the car, if that’s not possible for your plans then figure out an alternative. If you know you’ll need to go a grocery run that afternoon, maybe let your dog stay home that day. If you usually take them to work with you but you plan on hitting the gym on your way home, that’s another time where they’d be safer at home. You can also plan for a dog sitter to come and let them out if you’re worried about them being alone at home for too long.
Know the Options You Have
When it comes to a situation where you must go inside somewhere and it’s too hot outside, think about the options you truly have. If it’s a pet friendly place, you can bring them inside with you. If it’s not, you can have someone stay with them in the car with the AC on, or worse case you can leave your car running for them while they wait alone. Keep in mind, this should only be done in cases where there’s no other option. Also ideally, you’ll want a car that allows you to lock the doors while it’s running, not all cars will do this but more and more these days do.
Be Smart, Be Safe
If you get yourself in a situation where let’s say you never to get dinner for tonight but you’re in not able to let the car run with the doors locked and it’s not a safe place to let you car run unlocked, that’s ok, but learn from it. Be smarter going forward with your planning choices. Consider alternatives like order dinner instead or getting your groceries delivered. Risking your dogs health is never the answer! Be sure to take your time to plan accordingly for your day and always have back up options in case things take an unexpected turn.
How to Care for Your Dog with Hip Dysplasia
Find a trusted vet
There are quite a few illnesses that can mimic hip dysplasia in dogs, including cancer, which is why it’s absolutely necessary to get a thorough evaluation and diagnosis from a trusted veterinarian. A veterinarian will also be able to determine what stage of the illness your specific dog has and what steps you can take to manage the issues that typically accompany the symptoms as well as how to prevent further progression of the symptoms. Simply put, just like with disease processes that affect humans, there are various factors and treatment options that will be specific to your dog’s needs. Although there are several environmental variables that can affect hip dysplasia, it’s often times a genetic factor that plays the biggest role. If you have a larger breed dog who’s more susceptible to these sorts of conditions, it’s always good to know the ins and outs of prevention and treatment. This is why talking to your vet is so helpful! We also highly recommend finding a trusted dog sitter to care for your pup anytime you're away.
Next, you’ll want to take some time on your own to research the common problems that are associated with hip dysplasia so that you can be aware of any related issues that may arise. In addition, educating yourself will give you an even more in-depth understanding of the condition that your vet will likely not be able to cover in a single vet appointment. Knowing how to prevent the progression of the condition is probably the most important thing to focus on as this will give you the overall best improvement with your pet, as long as you’ve caught the condition early enough. On the flip side of this, once your dog has already developed serious symptoms of the condition, there’s much more that needs to go into their daily care. Basic things like diet and exercise are going to need to be properly adjusted for your dog. Usually, having a healthy diet will help decrease current weight issues and avoid weight gain in the future which puts extra stress on their joints resulting in increased pain. Exercise is also a key ingredient to a healthy lifestyle with hip dysplasia as a body in motion, tends to stay in motion. There are many supplements that can also help with joints these days like glucosamine and chondroitin. Many of the commonly recommended supplements are thankfully easy to purchase online and at local pet shops.
Take care of the dog in front of you
Although this tip sounds straight forward, it becomes more complex once you start to understand what it’s truly like to care for a pet with a disability. Especially if you’ve had to watch your pet deteriorate in front of you. It’s easy to research the symptoms but it’s much more mentally challenging to watch someone you love struggle. This is why we always recommend taking care of the dog in front of you. Not the dog you had yesterday, or the dog who your vet saw last week. Simply put, it’s ok to adjust their care as you see fit daily or even in the moment. Your dogs health will vary and so will their care needs, so remember that being flexible with them and with yourself should always be a priority.
Do You Need a Pet Sitter for your Bearded Dragon?
Make sure you hire a great pet sitter who covers all the essential care needs of your bearded dragon! These reptiles come with extensive care needs from lighting to heat to live food requirements. In this post we’ll go over all the different care aspects for them and why they’re important to your pet’s health. Lighting Needs
Bearded dragons have special lighting needs that are crucial to their overall health and well-being. In their tank they should have 3 different lighting types including a UVB light. Another light should be to provide an outdoor type light environment and the last is to give them warmth. All of these lights should be assembled in a certain way to mimic a natural outdoor environment.
These reptiles live naturally outdoors in desert type environments. We want to do our very best to replicate their normal habitat by keeping their tank at the right humidity level. Typically, a common guideline is between 35% - 40% humidity. If you need to adjust the humidity, you can use humidifiers or dehumidifiers to do so. The lamps may also help to adjust the humidity levels in their tank.
Since bearded dragons use the environment to regulate their body temperature, it’s important to have their tank set up to allow them to do this properly. For instance, you should always give them a basking area where they can go to soak up light and warm their body up. You can use a stick or structure they’re able to climb up to achieve this. On the other side of the tank you should have objects for them to get cool under. Pet stores and online retailers sell items that resemble caves to provide them with these options.
Feeding Requirements & Handling Knowledge
These guys have an interesting diet and it’s much more complex than your typical cat or dog. It also varies depending on their age. Younger dragons will have higher food consumption needs whereas older ones usually need much less. They’ll often eat crickets or roaches in addition to greens and even fruits! Their diet requirements have a very wide range so we recommend speaking with your veterinarian about what’s best for your individual dragon.
Before even becoming a reptile parent, you should do some research on the handling basics. If this is a family pet who will likely be handled by small children it’s also important to educate your kids on the right and wrong ways to hold your bearded dragon. Because of their body temperature regulation needs, this isn’t a pet who should be held for extended periods of time. If your home is standardly kept at a higher temperature, then you may be able to keep them outside of their tank for a longer period of time but it’s not advised to allow them to walk around freely for hours on end. Again, we’d advise speaking to your vet about the right treatment for your specific situation. If you’re planning an upcoming trip, be sure to book a pet sitter who is knowledgeable on all the intricate details of your dragon’s care needs.
How to Properly Care for Fearful Cats
Whether you’ve got a brand new kitten who has a more nervous personality or you’ve adopted an older cat who has an established pattern of nervous behavior, it’s not uncommon for cats to be fearful. By nature, they tend to be more hesitant around new people, in new situations, or in new environments. However, there are fortunately many things you can do to help properly care for them and to make them feel as safe and comfortable as possible! Let Them Come to You
The best thing you can do for most cats is to give them time to adjust. This isn’t always the easiest thing for us humans to do although, it is quite simple. Cats will often just need some more time to acclimate to new people or surroundings. Typically, people’s instinct is to move towards the cat, look at the cat, pet the cat, or even touch the cat. But to a fearful kitty, this can be way too much too fast. They may panic and end up hurting you or themselves to avoid this feeling of anxiety brewing inside of them. The easiest solution here is to let them come to you in their own time. Don’t pressure them and try to force them out of their hiding spots.
Create Positive Associations
Usually with younger kittens, this is a fun and exciting process. However, if you have a cat who’s endured some sort of trauma or abuse, this process may take more time and become much more complicated. Ultimately, there are some cats who can never be won over. But the best way to try is to create positive associations with your presence by giving them food, treats, toys, or even play time if that’s something they enjoy. Nowadays we have so many options for kitty treats and toys. We also have access to endless puzzle games at the touch of a button on popular apps like Amazon or Walmart. Pairing your presence with these positive experiences will help build a bond between you two.
Above All, Respect Them and Be Patient
After your interactions start improving you may be tempted to rush the process and try to go for a face snuggle or some lap pets. For some cats, this will be well received but for others this may reset your progress with them and end up taking longer to repair the relationship than would have initially been needed. This is why we must remember to respect them and their space and be patient always. Keep in mind that you are building this relationship for the long term benefits and that although it may be difficult to fight your human urges for some kitten cuddles, it will likely be worth it in the long run. On the bright side of things, it may be a hard long process to get a cat to like you or even just to trust you, but for most of them, once you’ve been approved you’re good to go! They typically build strong bonds with their “people” whether that be their foster parents, forever parents, or their pet sitter . Once that bond is formed, it’s a great foundation to create a long standing relationship of love and trust.
The 3 Best Nail Trim Hacks
Hack 1: First, BE Prepared Yourself With pets taking so many of their behaviors cues from us, it's crucial that we give lead by example. When it comes to something potentially stress-inducing like nail trims, there's no such thing as being too prepared. The best way to prepare yourself is to do some research into the nail trimming process with your specific pet. Whether that’s a cat, dog, or another small mammal, there will be specific instructions to follow for each and different tactics that will work best. When doing your research, be sure to watch some videos to get a better understanding of the full picture and the details in getting that perfect trim. For larger animals, it’s usually helpful to have another person to help you hold them and keep everyone safe during the process. Getting the proper grooming gear is also a big part of preparing. You’ll want a top rated pair of clippers and some styptic powder in case you accidentally cut a nail too close. Hack #2: Get Them Prepared Getting your pet ready for their nail trim is a process that can happen over a period of weeks and ideally should start as early as possible. First, you’ll want to start getting them used to body handling, having their paws picked up and held, and being held by another person during these exercises. Doing these exercises repeatedly helps desensitize them to the trimming routine. It will also help you to know if they’re ready to begin or if they need more time getting used to the pre-steps. If you’re starting with a young puppy or kitten, it’s best to begin doing these handling exercises when they first come home. This works in your favor to prevent future body sensitivities. If you’re going to be trimming an older animal, you’ll want to take a slower, more gradual approach. Hack 3: Make it Positive Creating positive associations is the most important thing to focus on above all else to ensure your pet will be a great participant in their nail trims. You can do this by always pairing all of your exercises with something positive like a treat, praise, and pets. When you’re practicing, be sure to let them know how amazing they’re doing and then spoil them to pieces when the exercises are complete. You’ll follow these same steps during the real trimmings as well. This helps to make the animal feels positive or at least neutral about the activity as a whole. It also gives them something else to focus on during the procedure so they don’t get as overwhelmed or stressed out. Typically, vets offices will offer you this service when you’re there but sadly a large animal of pets are uncomfortable when they’re at the vets office which can lead to anxiety or even aggression during nail trims. When done properly, at home nail trims can be a breeze. But if you’re struggling, we’re always here to help with our mobile grooming service !
Need a GREAT Sitter for your Exotic Pet?
Welcoming a new pet into the family is always exciting! But it definitely comes with undeniable challenges, especially when that new pet is considered “exotic.” Basically anything besides a cat or dog can easily claim that title these days! But not to worry, whether you have a reptile, ferret, rabbit, or a guinea pig, we’ve got you covered with our exotic pet sitting service !
Our care providers are trained in a variety of pets individual care needs. It’s never easy to take a trip away from your pets, but when you have a pet with specialized care needs this can make it incredibly difficult to feel “guilt-free” while you’re away. It’s unnerving to some the thought of being so dependent on another person and knowing that in your case, it’s not just a situation of throwing down some cat food so them to munch on and scooping a litter box. Exotic pets have a wide variety of special care needs ranging from having unlimited access to fresh hay to getting dust baths to keep their coats healthy. At the end of the day, it’s very similar to having a kid with specialized needs.
The Main Principles
As pet parents, we of course always want the best for our little ones. That’s why it’s so critical to make sure that while you’re away, you have someone you can 100% trust will know and understand how to provide the absolute best care. It’s also helpful if you’re able to find someone with a history of medical problems associated with your animal. Especially if they’ve had past medical problems. But in particular, it’s important to be able to spot if an animal is unwell in these cases because these specific species have very unique signs of illness. For example, with a cat or dog it’s usually pretty easy to notice if they’re not feeling well by their overall demeanor, unusual changes in bathroom habits, or appetite fluctuations. These are all signs that other species are unwell also but they may be displayed differently and harder to pick up on to someone without a past knowledge of common illnesses or conditions. Changes in behavior for these animals may also be more subtle or hard to spot for someone who’s unaware of what the normal behavior for this particular animal is.
What to Look For in a Sitter
We also want to point out that due to the various care factors that go into proper treatment, there are simply more factors to go wrong during their care time. For instance, some reptiles require a specific amount of light in their tanks to provide them with adequate warmth. If these warmth or lighting needs are not adequately met, you may see a decline in appetite and energy. Some reptiles may appear lethargic or just not as interested in their meals as they usually are. These small changes are hard to notice when you’re not quite sure what you’re looking for. This is why it’s so crucial to go over your specific animals typical behavior versus some of the warning signs that they may be experiencing some type of stress with your care provider prior to your travel plans. Most pet owners are really great at knowing what their animals normal behavior is compared to what behaviors they may display in time of stress, so it’s just a matter of communicating those to your sitter.
Are You Looking For A Sitter For Your Elderly Cat?
How to Locate the Ideal Cat Sitter for Your Kitty Finding a new sitting company can be difficult for numerous reasons. There's sometimes a process of filling out form, meeting the sitter themselves, and then actually having them care for your cat. But this all becomes a much more complicated process when you have an elderly cat, or even multiple elderly cats that you need care for. It's not always easy to know by someones outward appearance if they'll be a good fit for you. But there are some steps you can take to make sure you're getting the absolutely best care possible for your kitty. The most pressing thing to address when considering hiring someone new is their amount of experience and what that experience encompasses. Ideally, you'll want to find someone with background in caring for sick and elderly pets. Although your cat might be completely healthy at the time you leave them, it's not uncommon for cats to have adverse reactions to their humans leaving. They are certainly creatures of habit and they don't usually like their schedules being disrupted. Once You've Narrowed Down Your Options, Take a Closer Look On the surface, many pet sitters look the same. But to truly compare them, you'll want to take a deep dive into their history. Do they have any veterinary medicine background? Have they cared for pets like your before? How often have they done this? Do they have first aid and CPR certification? Are they insured? These are all critical things to bring up when searching for a good match. It's also important to note that although someone may have experience in a certain field, they may not have as much as another. Or they may not have been in the field for the past 5 years. Now, this doesn't mean they won't do a good job. But it does bring up the question as to what their current abilities are and what they're able to handle if your cat experiences any sort of distress while you're away. Cats in Their Golden Years Need Special Care When leaving your elderly cat, you'll want to plan for the worst and hope for the best. Plan for the worst meaning, be prepared to provider the caregiver with your vet's contact information in case of an emergency, also be sure to let them know if this vet has emergency hours or not. In addition, there's some small things you can do to make a big difference in your cat's comfort level while you're gone. Leaving some extra yummy food and treats behind is a great start! Have some readily available so your cat sitter is able to provide it in the event that your cat isn't taking their regular food or if they need food to help with a bond with your kitty. We also recommend using the spray "Feliway" if possible. This has been shown to reduce cat's stress levels.
How to Find the Right Pet Sitter for Your Anxious Dog
So You're Planning Some Time Away, But You Have An Anxious Dog At Home.. Now What? First things first, you should take some time to really access your pets behavior to see if anxiety is something they truly struggle with. And if so, what type of anxiety it is. Just like with humans anxiety can come in many shapes and sizes and the best treatment for them depends highly on the type of anxiety they struggle with. Separation anxiety, for example, can most definitely be significantly helped by a dog sitter coming more often! The more interaction your dog has with others will help to ease the feelings they are dealing with. The exercise will also help to calm their mind and body, just like with us. If however, they are anxious about new people near them or inside their home, its extremely important to hire a well-trained and experienced pet sitting company . Make Sure You Hire Someone Who Understands Dog Body Language As crazy as it may sound, dogs say so much more than we do just simply with their body language. Something like looking all the way to one side and exposing the whites of their eyes is a very common example of this. In the animal behavior world, this is known as "whale eye." It's a tell tale sign from a dog that they are uncomfortable. A knowledgeable sitter will know that a dog displaying this behavior should be handled with extra caution and care. Notice and Note the Behaviors Your Dog Displays Many dogs when placed in anxious inducing situations will become defensive and even aggressive. This is a completely normal behavior! This is their way of telling you to back off. Typically this includes behaviors like growling, air snapping, showing their teeth, and crouching down or backwards. When you notice your dog showing any of these signs, it's crucial to note them for your care provider. It's also helpful if you're able to provide further context and background on what and how exactly the pup displayed these behaviors. For example, you could note that Fluffy will growl if you get near his food bowl while he's eating. This will cue your sitter to make sure they feed Fluffy appropriately to avoid making your dog feel like he or she needs to be defensive. You may also note things like Fluffy will crouch backwards and protect his toys if you go for one of his favorites. This is a very typical sign of an anxious dog. They can sometimes feel the need to control things around them so having someone touch or move their toys can push them over the edge. Knowing When You've Found The Right Pet Sitter Comes From a Feeling Within When it comes to someone else looking after your fur baby, this is often a "gut feeling" we either do or don't have about someone. It's not always a good match with everyone so it's important to do your research to find someone who's qualified and experienced in working not only with dogs in general, but with dogs who have a history of anxiety. For dogs struggling with anxiety, it's best to keep their routine as predictable as possible. This includes who you let look after them. So when you do find the right sitter for you, hold onto them!
Need a Pet Sitter for a Diabetic Cat?
If you have a diabetic cat you probably feel even more nervous than most owners about taking a trip. With the endless options for pet sitters it's hard to know which way to go with care options, but Happy Paws - PetCare has you covered with our top rated Cat Sitters ! Sure, you may be able to employ the high schooler down the street to help with pet care, but in cases where your pet's health is a real concern, its always best to go with a professional. Your mind will be much more at ease knowing that you'll have an experience profession cat sitter who understand the special cat needs of your kitty. When it comes to specific diabetic care needs, it's important for your care provider to not only know how to properly care for your cat, but also know how to recognize if your cat is showing signs of medical issues. Since cats are more easily prone to stress than dogs, noticing signs of distress is something that our sitters are all throughly educated on. Cats are especially prone to changes in appetite related to stressful events or changes in routine, like when you go away on vacation or for a work trip. This is why we closely monitor your cat's stress level by getting a baseline for their normal behavior during your meet and greet, and then continuously noting any behavior changes during your visits. In addition to behavior monitoring, our cat sitters are also trained in the latest AVSAB recommend treatment protocols. These include procedures like giving shots, fluids, and monitoring blood levels. We're also able to properly check for signs of dehydration, poor blood circulation, and hypoglycemia. Knowing the Essentials of Handling Diabetic Cats No matter what company you choose to go with, it's crucial to pick one thats highly educated in caring for animals with health concerns. First and foremost, your care provider should have experience administering shots. While some diabetic cats may become easier to handle over time, others can be extremely difficult to administer medications to, especially when it involves needles. It also can be upsetting for some cats to be held and restrained by a stranger. This is why having a meet and greet with your caregiver prior to your travels is so vital. Your cat is much more likely to be accepting of a new human when your able to introduce them on good terms before any medications need to be given. It's also helpful overall to the kitty to be able to get to know their care provider personally so they can gain trust for the person who will be caring for them while you're away. Above All ELSE... While having a sitter who is experienced in administering your cat's medications is of the utmost importance, it's also extremely important for the sitter to build a good relationship with you and your cat. Cats can be highly sensitive creatures and adding the stress of you being away from home can sometimes be enough to upset their routine. This why is you'll want to be sure that whoever you entrust with the honor of caring for your kitty is trustworthy, kind, and in-tune with your individual cat's needs. Submit a Reservation Request form today to book an excellent Cat Sitter!
Top 5 Toys for Your Cat & Cat Sitter to Play With
When your cat sitter comes by to care for your kitty while you're away, you'll want them to be able to have fun and bond together! That where having some amazing cat toys comes in. Not only will your kitty love playing with their new toys, it'll also give them some positive interactions with their sitter. The Classic Jingle Balls The classics are classics for a good reason. There's just something about a jingle bell inside a rolling ball that gets kitties everywhere all excited! They LOVE the sound, the rolling of the ball, and most of all: chasing after it! You can get a 10 pack of these at any local pet store, Walmart, or amazon for less than ten bucks. They make a great first set of toys for a new kitten or cat and they certainly won't break the bank. Try out different colors, or sizes to see which ones your kitty loves the most. Old Fashion Mice Toys Again, here we have a classic toy that just ranks on the top of all cat lovers lists. These are another affordable toy that are a huge hit with most cats. They typically come with some kind of sound maker inside whether thats a rattler or a jingle bell. Some even come with catnip scent already on them. The only down fall to these babies are that they easily end up lost. Most finding themselves under beds, couches, shelves, etc. Their size makes them a super fun toy to bat around but that's usually how they get wedged somewhere and lost forever so plan to have to keep buying these ones at least once a year. Rolling Ball & Scratcher Cat Toy Definitely grab yourself one of these 2 in 1 scratcher and rolling ball toys! These are more on the expensive side but they're pretty commonly found at thrift shops because older cats tend to get tired with them over the years. But for a kitten, they are pure bliss! They can bat the ball around in circles to keep themselves happily entertained. But the best part of this toy is the scratching piece in the middle. These cardboard pieces are typically replaceable so don't worry if your kitty tears it up! That's the purpose of the center piece, to be a scratching outlet for your cat. They can even keep their own nails groomed this way saving you the time and effort of a nail trim. String Chasing Cat Toys These string chasing toys are most definitely a MUST for the younger kittens! They come with long sticks where you can attach strings, other toys, feathers, etc. This is a great way to start bonding with a new kitty since it requires you to be involved in the playing process. It's also great exercise for your cat so it can be helpful for those who ay be carrying around a few extra pounds. Interactive Cat Toys Lastly, we have our interactive cat toys. These are fantastic additions to your cat's space or play around because they are very much a "set and forget about it" type. These are a hit or miss for some, but the ones that do like them, really love them! These also tend to be a bit pricier but they can be found used for pretty cheap. If you're looking for help with your cat's care don't forget to check out our Cat Sitting service!
Best Chew Toys to Get Your Dog While Your Away on Vacation
These are the Best Options to Give Your Pet Sitter for Your Dog While You're Away Why do this? When you go on a trip, it's SO important to leave your pup with some high quality chew toys. Chewing help reduce stress and anxiety. It also significantly decreases the likelihood of your dog causing damage to your home while you're away on your trip. Not sure which ones are the best to pick? We'll go over which are the best options below! The Do's and Do Not's of Bones Whenever considering a new chew toy for your dog, you should first educate yourself on the difference of the current choices on the market. High prices do not always indicate better products, especially in today's economy. It's easy to go to any pet store and pick out a chew toy sure. But keeping these do's and do not's in mind when shopping will help you make a better choice: Will it be safe for your puppy or dog? Will it be worth the money you spend? Will it last long enough to keep your pup happily entertained? These are the questions you should ask first before purchasing anything. Durability and Strength for Your Dog Durability goes hand in hand with the quality of the chew you're buying. This is primarily because the cheaper chews are going to break or disintegrate much faster than a high quality chew. There are a few brands you can trust to provide you with good products: Nylabone and Kong. These brands have been around for a long time and have had the time to test and perfect the products you see currently on the market. They specifically test for safety and durability with their products. When going with either of these companies you can be sure you're going to get your money's worth. These brands make a variety of different chews including imitation bones, antlers, and tree branches. The reason they use imitation products is because they've perfected the formulas to replicate what it is your dog loves about these items, while making them long-lasting and durable at the same time. A regular bone or tree branch can easily be broken and splitter becoming a danger to your dog and a potentially costly vet bill. But they've found a way to make these products with materials that are safe for your dog and can withstand even the most aggressive chewers. Overall Best Practices with Your Puppy or Dog There are some overshadowing best practices to follow when picking out a new chew. Look for something that will not be easily chewed or potentially digested. Look for something thats marked with the words "for aggressive chewers" or "extreme chewers." You also want to look for the two brands previously mentioned: Nylabone and Kong. In addition, looking for products that you can see are well made overall is going to give you the best bang for your buck. When it comes to chews, it's always better to spring for the more expensive, well-made type. This is because your pup will go through the cheaper ones so much faster and they're much more likely to be the kind that can be accidentally ingested. In the past, pet care professionals had recommended items like rawhide to many of their clients. We've now come to know that rawhide can be a huge veterinary nightmare. It can cause blockages in your dog's digestive track leading to expensive surgeries. This is why it's so important to research the types of chews you buy before you go out shopping. Or if you're shopping online, take some time to read the reviews and see what kinds of experiences their other customers are having.