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Why Should I Crate Train My Dog?

guideteaserCrate training can be a challenge for many pet parents. The first thing I often hear is that they feel bad leaving them in a crate while they are away instead of letting them have a place to roam and sleep on the couch. Crate training doesn’t have to be a negative thing, in fact, it should be your pet’s favorite place to be… that is if you’ve done your crate training the right way. This is the first of a series of posts about crate training, so lets start with the simplest question to answer: why should I crate train my puppy? P.S. if you can’t wait for the rest of the series of articles, I’ve written a comprehensive guide on crate training available on thatpetplace.com.

Does my dog need a crate?

Lets go back to a time before dogs evolved into, well, domesticated dogs. Wild dogs, foxes and wolves all have a den in the wild. They are all relatives and in the wild have many of the same behaviors. A den acts as a dog’s safe haven. It is a place to retreat to when they are frightened, feel threatened, where they go to eat, and where they raise their young.

In your home your pet’s crate becomes their den. If you follow the right steps the crate becomes your pet’s safe haven, retreat and home within their home.  Scared of thunderstorms? Lay in the crate and feel comforted. Too busy in the house with guests? Retreat to the crate for some rest and relaxation. Fearful that your sister is going to steal your bone? Take it into your crate and feel safe. You can see where I am going, right?
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Proper Pet Care 101: The Basic Necessities

Happy puppy

Hi Pet Blog Readers,

Please welcome Jordan with this comprehensive guide on pet care: its everything a new pet owner should know and research before bringing home your very first pet. Our pets are family and living creatures. They should be given the best care and attentiveness you have to offer. Good luck on your pet owning adventures and be sure to add anything you think needs to be added to this guide in the comments section!

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Owning a pet is a huge responsibility, especially if you think about pet health. However, this responsibility also comes with a huge reward in the form of the adoration and love that your pet will show towards you. Wouldn’t you see yourself smiling foolishly whenever you see your dogs wagging their tails at you or your cats dozing off on your lap peacefully? It is like the best feeling in the world that you have made such animals feel safe and happy even if they can only express it in their cute gestures.

First Aid Kit

First Aid Kit ContentsOne of the first things that you need to do in order to ensure the safety of your pets is to have a pet first aid kit at home. You never know when your clever yet naughty animals will get into trouble so you better be ready to handle any crisis that will come your way. The kit should have the following things:

  • Cotton swabs and balls
  • Bandages and sterile gauze pads
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • First aid tape
  • Scissors
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Leash
  • Muzzle
  • Splint
  • Gloves
  • Eye wash
  • Antibacterial ointment
  • Mineral oil
  • Ice pack and hot pack
  • Buffered aspirin
  • Thermometer
  • A bottle of water
  • Veterinary documents
  • Book on pet first aid
  • Other drugs

Cleaning Up After Pets

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Holiday Gift Guide – Top 10 Gifts for Your Cats

Cat ShelvesChristmas is just around the corner and it just wouldn’t be complete without some gifts under the tree for your favorite feline(s)!  There are some great gifts for your cats to add to the list this year…read on to make this holiday a success for your precious pet with these great holiday suggestions!

1. Cat/Cloud Shelves

Everyone who shares a home with a cat knows they love to climb and explore areas that provide the best view of the room. Whether you have limited space or not, a cumbersome cat tree may not be an option. Enter the new line of cat shelves available at thatpetplace.com. These innovative and attractive wall mount shelves are functional wall decor, so they’re as much a gift to you as they are for your kitties. Install the shelves on any wall to create open and secure resting and perching spots for your pets. The shelves are sleek and stylish, and a variety of colors allows you to choose the unit that best fits your existing decor. Each shelf features a wide, cushioned base to accommodate cat weight up to 50 lb. Read More »

Learning to Speak Cat: What Your Kitten’s Behavior Is Trying to Tell You

shutterstock_105920375Kittens are cute. It is an undeniable fact that the little balls of soft fur that are clumsy in their own kittenish way are probably one of the cutest animals on the planet. When you bring the kitten home, you may be thinking that there is nothing to know about raising cats as they are often portrayed as being pretty self-reliant.

Cats, however, do talk to you and you should have an understanding of what they are trying to say. These communications are not always going to be verbal displays, they will also include the animals’ mannerisms, or how it presents itself.

Punishments

You may be tempted to try disciplining your kitten in order to break it of any bad habits that may be present. Some suggest making a loud noise by either clapping or banging something, while others suggest using a spray bottle to stop undesirable behaviors.

Whichever method you choose you will want to be sure that you never shake, yell at, or kick the kitten. Kittens, much like human babies, are incredibly delicate. Shaking, hitting, or kicking the kitten can cause serious problems. You will also want to be careful to avoid doing things that cause your kitten to become skittish or afraid of you.
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Clumps, crystals and more – your guide to choosing the best cat litter

Classic Tabby Scottish FoldCat litter: every cat parent needs it, every new cat owner is overwhelmed by the vast number of choices, and every multiple cat owner is trying to find the most effective brand. You’ve got clumping vs. non clumping, clay vs. silica vs. biodegradable vs. flushable… where do you even start?

If you’re a new cat caregiver with a shiny new kitten, choosing the type of litter you want to use will likely depend on your personal preferences and it will be easy to litter train your kitten because they haven’t developed a preference for a particular texture yet. What I’m trying to say (gracefully) is that cats can be downright snobby about the type of litter they’ll use.

I’m sure you’re all gasping at the implications. You’re probably saying, “My cat, a snob? Never!” I’m not being judgmental, but in my experience with cats, they generally tend to be extremely picky about everything in their environment. My cats don’t tolerate change and if they don’t get their way they’re going to go on a hunger strike or pee in my purse. Trust me; it’s not as fun as it sounds. To illustrate: they will only use one type of litter (Feline Pine) eat one kind of food (Friskies, the pate, not chunked), and any guest spending the night leaves me wondering where and when I’ll find the proverbial pee in the purse!

How do you change the type of litter you use without protest from the felines?

Examining the damage to the litter bagOh no, so you have an adult cat and want to change litters for some of the reasons we’ll discuss later in the article? All is not lost! You can gradually introduce a new type of litter; it just takes a little bit of time. Here are the steps; it’s pretty similar to how you might change up your dog or cat’s food. Read More »

How to clean pet stains & the best stain and odor removers

The Litter BoxAn alarming number of pets are surrendered every day because of behavioral problems. Many times these problems involve inappropriate elimination, in other words the pet is peeing or pooping outside of appropriate places (like the litter box or the yard). Inappropriate elimination in cats is particularly alarming because a cat is most likely to pee outside of the litter box when they are ill, and they usually have some sort of urinary tract infection as the root cause. The moral here being, if your cat is peeing outside of the litter box, take a trip to the vet, not the shelter!

Pets can pee or poop inside the house for other reasons too, for example if they were never properly house trained or if they are very young. If there is one thing that all pet owners can agree on, it is that nothing stinks up a house quite like pet urine.

So if you have a pet that is going to the bathroom outside of the litter box or the yard, Step 1 is to clean the affected areas so that your home stays fresh and your pets are less likely to eliminate there again. step 2 is to visit the vet to rule out any potential health problems related to this bad behavior. Step 3 is to train, or re-train, your pets where they’re supposed to do their business.

This article is focusing on what I consider to be the hardest step.. Step 1: Cleaning pet urine stains and odors. Cleaning cat or dog pee off of your carpets and floors can be challenging if you don’t have the right products. What are the best products to use? Well, this pet owner has tried her fair share of pet cleaning products and some do work better than others.
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Pet Identification Types – Helping Lost Pets Find Their Way Home to You

Have you ever lost a pet? Maybe your cat or dog slipped out an open door or through an open gate in your back yard? If you’ve ever experienced the panic and stress of a lost pet, then you may already know the importance of having some form of pet identification on your pet to help them find their way home to you! Accidents happen. Sometimes pets are scared, sometimes they’re curious, sometimes they just like to run. I used to have a “runner”. The Jack Russell would, upon seeing even a small chance to escape the house would seize the opportunity, running for miles through yards, across streets without a destination in mind, simply running to run and without desire to be captured or return. On more than one occasion I was able to  pursue and capture my wiley pet, but there were one or two times when I returned to my home distraught after losing sight of him, thinking the worst that I might never see him again. Fortunately, he never went on a joy run without his collar, which not only held his license, but also a simple ID tag, etched with his name and my phone number…perhaps the best couple of bucks I spent since it was that little tag that brought my dog back to me.

Just a few minutes of your time and a few dollars from your wallet can mean the difference between losing a pet forever and having them home safe with you. Here are several methods of pet identification you can employ for the safety and security of your pet. You can use a single method, or better yet a combination of ID’s.

IMG_2373ID Tags and Collars

Perhaps the simplest and easiest method of ID is an etched or printed ID tag or collar. You can purchase a personalized tag or collar from any variety of retail or online sources. Many tags can be printed with several lines of text, so you can choose the info you would like to have displayed. Personalized accessories like these not only allow you to personalize your pet’s style, but also to supply them with a quickly visible and accessible means of identifying your pet and contacting you.

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Choosing the Right Dog Bowl for Your Dog

Choosing a dog bowl

Click to see the full sized graphic on thatpetplace.com

If you’ve recently walked down the dog bowl aisle, you’ll know that there are dozens of different sizes and shapes of dog bowls available to choose from. What you might not know is that the different shapes now available are specifically manufactured to meet the specific needs of different dog breeds and age groups. Here at That Pet Place we’ve put together a handy infographic to help you with choosing the right dog bowl that is the perfect match for your pet! Read More »

Walking the Dog – How Exercising with Your Pets Can Motivate You to Stay Fit

Ready for a WalkI’m not what you would consider an athletic person. For years I struggled with laziness and weight gain and not even my own deteriorating reflection looking back at me couldn’t get me up and moving to do anything about it. But about a year ago, spurred by an office “biggest loser” competition and the possibility of a substantial cash prize, I finally made the leap and started a walking regime, and walking the dog was the natural way to get going. But you know, it wasn’t long til the money didn’t matter…I started feeling great, eating right, and best of all, I came to realize that daily walks were as rewarding and beneficial for my dog’s physical and emotional well-being as my own. Daily walks and explorations became a necessity, a welcome obligation, and my dogs have become two of my biggest motivators to get moving and get fit.

Now don’t get me wrong, my dogs are active and get plenty of exercise, but that’s all thanks to having access to a fenced back yard, a lovely local dog park, and family lands where they are free to roam, play and run as much as their hearts desire. It’s always been easy just to open the door or take a short drive to let them run, while I enjoyed a maple-shaded park bench or a nap in the grass. Involving my pets in my newly adapted physical regime has become not only one of the most motivating aspects, but also priceless bonding time and a unique chance to really see my four-legged friends in the elements they love. I don’t think I could imagine two better walking partners to keep me on the path to success. Let me tell you why… Read More »

Dealing with Hot Spots – Pet Health

Has your pet ever experienced hot spots? Hot spots, otherwise known as acute moist dermatitis (AMD), are red, oozing lesions that may form on your pet’s skin…they’re kind of wet and scabby. The patches of irritation may start out as an unnoticeable bite, sting, pustule or other minor skin problem, but your dog’s natural instinct to lick, chew and scratch the area leads to a larger, more visible patch which progresses from a minor bump to hair loss, staining, flaking and possibly infection or permanent scars.  Hot spots can can be a problem any time of year, and for any dog, and if you’ve ever had a pet develop hot spots you can guess from seeing them how aggrivating and painful they must be to experience. Let’s discuss hot spots and how you can prevent, heal and otherwise deal with AMD.

What Causes Hot Spots?

Hot Spot FoamHot Spots have lots of causes, and they rear their ugly heads quickly, and sometimes without any warning. Some of the most common causes are flea or insect bites. Allergens or other irritants that come in contact with your pet’s skin are also a common cause. Small scratches or wounds can also begin an outbreak, particularly as your dog instinctively licks the area. Dogs that experience stress, anxiety or boredom can also scratch or chew, simply to occupy their minds. But the underlying blame falls on bacteria that infest these minor skin breaks, further inflaming an already irritated area. Any dog can develop a hot spot, but dogs who are not washed and brushed regularly, those with sensitive skin, and those with thick, long fur can be more prone to developing hot spots. Read More »

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