Category Archives: fleas and ticks

Camping With Dogs: What to Know Before You Go


By Julia Williams

Most dogs enjoy spending time in the “great outdoors,” and taking them on a family camping trip can be a lot of fun. You can go for a hike in the woods, go swimming in the lake, or just relax together at the campsite. However, before you go camping with a dog, there are things to consider and precautions to take. Careful planning will help keep your dog safe and ensure that the experience is pleasant for everyone.

Guard against fleas and ticks. These nasty pests can be found anywhere, but they’re particularly plentiful in wooded areas. Though it’s important to have some type of flea and tick protection for your pets at home, it’s vital if you take your dog camping with you. Whether you choose to use a chemical based topical flea control or natural flea control products is up to you. Your vet may also recommend the Lyme disease vaccination. Speaking of vaccinations, before you take your dog camping, make sure their required shots are up to date. It’s wise to carry your certificates with you in case park officials ask to see them. While camping, inspect your dog frequently for ticks and if you find one, remove it immediately.

Identification is a must. Make sure your dog wears a collar with an i.d. tag that has your cell phone number on it. If your dog should get lost, either at a campsite or rest area, identification will allow you to reunite quickly.

Make sure the campground allows dogs. The website campingpet.com lists dog-friendly destinations in the U.S., along with pet rules and policies at all State and National Parks and Forests. To avoid disappointment and/or incurring fines, you should also confirm the pet policy with your chosen campground directly when you make your reservation.

Campground “pet-iquette.” Don’t allow your dog to run loose at your campsite, on hiking trails or during walks around the campground where they could encounter (and chase) wildlife, people or other dogs. If your dog causes problems, you could get kicked out of the campground, so keep your dog under control at all times. Clean up and properly dispose of all doggie doo at the campsite and while hiking or walking your dog around the campground. Don’t leave your dog unattended at your campsite, because they might bark out of boredom, fear and/or loneliness. A constantly barking dog greatly annoys people who cherish the peace and quiet a campground offers, and they may complain to the park ranger if your dog makes too much noise.

Store pet food safely and securely. Seasoned campers know how important it is to keep bears, raccoons and other forest critters from getting into their food rations, and that goes for dog food too. Clean up as soon as your dog finishes eating, and if you’re tent camping, suspend the dog food from a tree limb with your own food, or lock it in your vehicle in a sturdy storage container.

Keep your vehicle clean. Cover your seats with sheets or blankets to protect them from pet hair, dirt and muddy paws. Bring along extras in case those get soiled and there are no laundry facilities. You should also pack a clean soft blanket that you can spread on the ground for your dog to lie down on at the campsite.

Additional supplies for camping with dogs:

* Dog food to last for the duration of your camping trip plus a few extra days just in case.

* Bowls for dog food and water. Collapsible bowls are convenient and nice to have, and they’re usually small enough to fit into your backpack so you can take them along on hikes.

* Bring enough bottled water for everyone, humans included, since you won’t know for certain if the water supply is safe to drink.

* Dogs can get dirty on camping trips, so pack some dog shampoo and towels, and waterless shampoo in case you won’t have a place to wash him.

* A pet first aid kit is handy to have– you can buy these at pet stores, or make your own.

* A regular (not retractable) 6-foot leash for hiking and walks around the campground.

* Tie out cable and tie out stake, and/or portable fencing.

* Dog toys for playtime.

* A collapsible dog crate, in case you need a safe and secure way to confine your dog.

If you plan ahead and pack smart, camping with your dog can be a wonderful experience. The fresh air, exercise and peaceful surroundings will do wonders to rejuvenate you and your dog.

Read more articles by Julia Williams

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

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Summer Safety for Dogs


By Suzanne Alicie

Just like humans, dogs enjoy the summertime. Warm balmy days, playing outdoors, going on vacation – what’s not to love? However, there are certain summertime safety measures that responsible pet owners should take. There are several different aspects of the season that can cause problems for your dog. We all want our dogs to enjoy the great outdoors in the summertime, but it is always wise to take some precautions against these potential dangers.

Heat

If your dog is spending time outdoors, it is important that he has a cool shaded area with plenty of fresh water to drink. Even a few hours outside without any shelter or water can cause heat exhaustion, heat stroke and general overheating. While dogs love to be outside and enjoy the warm weather, as dog owners we have to remember to take care and not expose them to too much of the heat.

Fleas and Ticks

While these are year round problems in some areas, during the summer it is extremely dangerous for dogs to be unprotected. There are several ways to protect your dog from fleas and ticks in the summertime. Whether you use a topical treatment, pills, collars, powders, or natural methods, treat your dog and his bedding to help prevent flea and tick infestations. Also, check your dog regularly after he spends time outdoors, to remove pesky ticks before they get attached. As a dog moves around outside, even if he is treated, more than likely you will still find a tick or two occasionally. For more information on how to fight these nasty pests, read Natural Flea Control for Dogs and Cats, by Linda Cole.

Diseases

Your dog may be more active outdoors in warm weather, which could lead to exploring new areas, and traveling with you. This can expose your dogs to the dangerous Parvovirus and other infectious diseases. Make sure your dog has had all of his inoculations, and try to keep a sharp eye on what he may eat, sniff or roll in as he checks out the summertime world around him.

Grooming Problems

As the weather heats up, many dogs will shed their winter coats. This means that you will have to spend a little extra time brushing and grooming your dog. Another cause of extra grooming is that dogs love to run and roll, which leaves them with grass, burrs and other hitchhikers attached to their coat. Dogs’ nails tend to get naturally worn when they spend time outdoors, but it is important to check your dogs’ paws for pad tears, broken nails and other problems that may cause them pain. It’s always a good idea to have a doggie first aid kit on hand to treat these little problems and keep your dog running smoothly on all four padded paws.

Getting outdoors in the summertime is a lot of fun for both you and your pet. Taking a few precautions and extra steps to prepare your dog for the season can help insure that summer remains a pleasure and not a cause of distress for you or your dog.

Photo courtesy of Tero Miettinen.

Read more articles by Suzanne Alicie

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.

Pets and Pests: How to Combat Fleas and Ticks


By Stacy Mantle

There is nothing more terrifying to a pet owner than happening across a flea or tick on their pet. The first thought that runs through their head is that they must do something immediately. While you do need to take action, you should always be thinking of ways to prevent pests in the first place.

Prevention is the key when it comes to pests such as fleas and ticks. While you may not have them in your home now, there is always a distinct possibility that they are on the way. The best way to prevent pests is to have your home treated with an environmentally friendly, yet effective pest control service. Treating the outside of a home is optimal, and will help in eliminating anything that may show up indoors.

If you do find fleas or ticks in your home, there are a number of steps to follow:

1. Vacuum: Studies show that merely vacuuming the home regularly can eliminate 50% of fleas and ticks. Don’t let waste be stored in a bag. Wrap it in a plastic bag and dispose outside or empty and clean canister after a quick spray of frontline.

2. Laundry: Do lots and lots of laundry. This will help eliminate any current pupae (flea larvae) and help prevent future problems.

3. Treat your pet: Using a nontoxic spray or monthly treatment, be sure to have your pet treated. Be very cautious when choosing a treatment and do your homework. If you’re treating cats or kittens, be careful. They have a tendency to react poorly to these treatments and it’s important to choose one that is nontoxic and approved for use on cats. Read the instructions and never try to use a dog treatment on a cat.

4. Treat bedding: Be sure to vacuum and clean the areas where your pet spends most of their time. Wash bedding, treat with a nontoxic spray or powder, and vacuum often.

With these guidelines, you should be able to prevent and eliminate any future infestations. If you already have fleas, remember that you will need to do this often. Fleas have a 15-day life cycle.

Read more articles by Stacy Mantle

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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, corporate or brand names, is for information and convenience only. Such use does not constitute an endorsement by CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods of any product or service. Opinions are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® All Natural Pet Foods.