Health and Safety Tips


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Barked: Mon Dec 31, '07 10:06am PST 
Hey Dogsters and Catsters post your health and safety tips here! wave

It's my world,- you just live in- it.
Barked: Mon Dec 31, '07 10:06am PST _dog

It's my world,- you just live in- it.
Barked: Mon Dec 31, '07 10:07am PST 
The link above is for this article:

Top 10 Tips For Feeding Your Adult Dog Adult dogs require sufficient nutrients to meet energy needs and to maintain and repair body tissues. The amount you feed your adult dog should be based on his or her size and energy output. Activity levels vary dramatically between pets, and will play an important role in determining caloric intake.

As a responsible dog owner, one of the most common pitfalls you’ll have to watch out for is overfeeding. Attempts to shower our dogs with love by means of big meals and tons of tasty treats are sweet, but misguided. In dogs, as with humans, extra weight can lead to health problems. Be sure to indulge your four-legged friend with affection, not food—and read the following tips for more helpful advice from our ASPCA pet nutrition experts:

1. Lassie Versus Lazy
House pets vary widely in their activity levels. An animal with a "normal" activity level should receive what we call "maintenance" energy. A pampered lap dog may require 10 percent below maintenance, while an active pet who exercises regularly outdoors may require maintenance plus 20 to 40 percent.

2. Working Dogs: Earning Their Dinner
The dietary needs of working canines, such as police dogs, guide dogs and cattle dogs, will depend on their occupations. Energy needs will increase with the work level and/or stress level. A dog with a moderate work load may require an energy increase of 40 percent compared to maintenance, whereas a dog with a high work load may require an extra 50 to 70 percent.

3. Do You Have the Hardest Working Pup in Show Business?
Show dogs must be fed a balanced diet with the correct amount of energy, because deficiencies may be reflected in coat quality. While on the show circuit, the pet's energy requirement may increase by 20 percent or more. The dog should be fed maintenance amounts when not on the show circuit.

4. Get Well Soon
An animal recovering from surgery or suffering from a disease may have an increased nutritional requirement for repair, healing and fighting infection.

5. Whatever the Weather
Environment influences energy needs, and extreme hot or cold weather can increase a dog’s energy needs. Both keeping warm and keeping cool require extra energy expenditure, so you may wish to talk to your pet’s vet about what to do when the mercury dips and/or soars.

6. How, What, When
Dogs may be fed successfully in a number of ways that meet both the owner's and the animal's needs and circumstances. These methods include portion-control feeding, free-choice feeding and timed feeding.

- The portion-control feeding entails measuring your pet's food and offering it as a meal, thereby controlling the amount of food that can be consumed. This method is used for weight control programs and for animals that might overeat if fed free-choice. Food can be provided in one or more meals daily.

- Free-choice feeding is also known as "ad lib" feeding or "free feeding.” Food is available at all times, as much as the pet wants, whenever the pet wants. Most nursing mothers are fed by the free-choice method. This method is most appropriate when feeding dry food, which will not spoil if left out.

- The timed feeding method involves making a portion of food available for the pet to eat for a specified period of time. For example, the food can be placed in the dog's bowl for thirty minutes. After that time, if the pet has not consumed the food, it is removed.

7. Two Square Meals a Day
We recommend all dogs be fed twice daily. Simply divide the amount suggested on the label of your pet’s food into two meals, spaced eight to twelve hours apart. You may need to adjust portions as you learn your dog’s ideal daily “maintenance” amount.

8. What’s Up, Doc?
Pet owners should always consult with their dog's veterinarian to determine the best feeding schedule and types of foods for their pets.

9. A Growing Problem
Some dogs will overeat when fed free-choice method, which can result in obesity. If your pet eats free-choice and has put on too much weight, you will need to switch to portion-control feeding.

10. Take Five (Or Less)
We all love to give our dogs treats. However, treats should be given in moderation and should represent five percent or less of the dog’s daily food intake. The rest should come from a nutritionally complete dog food. When using treats frequently, such as during training exercises, try to use the smallest pieces you can.


Wanna play?
Barked: Mon Dec 31, '07 10:12am PST 
This contains good automobile travel tips for both Dogs and Cats:

Automobile Safety For PetsCheck out our common-sense cautions to help keep your pets safe in and around vehicles.
Don’t Leave Me This Way!
Number-one rule of automobile safety for pets: NEVER LEAVE YOUR PET ALONE IN A PARKED CAR! Overheating can kill an animal.

It only takes ten minutes on an 85-degree day for the inside of your car to reach 102 degrees Fahrenheit, even if the windows have been left open an inch or two. Within 30 minutes, the interior can reach 120 degrees—and even when the temperature is a pleasant 70 degrees, the inside of your car may be as much as 20 degrees hotter than the air outside. Parking in the shade offers little protection, as the sun is constantly shifting throughout the day. Pets who are young, elderly, or obese are particularly at risk of overheating (hyperthermia), as are those with thick or dark-colored coats, and breeds with short muzzles.

This same precaution carries over to the winter months, too. In cold weather, a car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold and causing an animal to freeze to death.

Car Travel Tips
Whether you’re going around the block or across the country, the ASPCA recommends that you keep your pets safe and secure in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. Make sure it’s large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. You’ll also want to keep in mind:
- Don’t allow your pet to ride with his head outside the window. This can subject him to inner ear damage and lung infections, and he could be injured by flying objects.
- Don’t feed your furry friend in a moving vehicle—even if it’s a long drive.
- Carry a gallon thermos of cold water, or bring along a two-liter plastic bottle of water that you’ve frozen the night before.

Click here for additional car travel tips.

Winter Weather Precautions
The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center urges pet owners to take steps to prevent accidental pet exposures to two potentially dangerous products used during the winter:

Antifreeze products containing ethylene glycol are highly toxic, and can produce life-threatening kidney damage in pets, even in small amounts. Most cases of antifreeze poisoning occur around the pet’s home and are usually due to improper storage or disposal, so it’s important that you take the following precautions:
- Always clean up antifreeze spills immediately.
- Store antifreeze in clearly marked, sealed containers, in areas that are inaccessible to your pets.
- Consider switching to antifreeze products that contain propylene glycol, which are relatively less toxic and provide an extra margin of safety for pets and wildlife.
- Be alert for leaks and spills from neighborhood vehicles when taking your pet on walks during the winter months.

Ice melts are available in both liquid and solid forms, and are used to melt ice and snow on slippery sidewalks, roads and driveways. Ice melts may contain ingredients that, if ingested by pets, can produce effects that include drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, excessive thirst, weakness, and low blood pressure; in severe cases, cardiac abnormalities, seizures, coma and even death can result.

If you suspect that your pet may have ingested antifreeze or ice melts, contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (800) 426-4435 immediately.

Click here for more information on these winter weather hazards.

Not So Cool For Cats
During the winter, outdoor cats sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars for warmth and protection. But a car’s fan belt can kill or injure an animal when the motor starts. If you are aware that there are outdoor or feral cats in your neighborhood, please bang on the hood of the car and wait a few seconds before turning on the engine.

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Barked: Mon Dec 31, '07 10:15am PST 
The click here link for additional travel tips didn't work in the above article so here they are!

Car Travel Tips

For some pet parents, a trip’s no fun if the four-legged members of the family can’t come. But traveling can be highly stressful, both for you and your animal companions. With thoughtful preparation, you can ensure a safe and comfortable trip for everyone.

Planning a road trip? Traveling with a pet involves more than just loading the animal in the back seat and motoring off—especially if you will be driving long distances or plan to be away for a long time. The ASPCA offers the following tips to help you prepare for a safe and smooth car trip:

1. Keep your pets safe and secure in a well-ventilated crate or carrier. There are a variety of wire mesh, hard plastic and soft-sided carriers available. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s large enough for your pet to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in. And P.S., it’s smart to get your pet used to the carrier in the comfort of your home before your trip.

2. Get your pet geared up for a long trip by taking him on a series of short drives first, gradually lengthening time spent in the car.

3. Your pet’s travel-feeding schedule should start with a light meal three to four hours prior to departure. Don’t feed your furry friend in a moving vehicle—even if it is a long drive.

4. Never leave your animal alone in a parked vehicle. On a hot day, even with the windows open, a parked automobile can become a furnace in no time, and heatstroke can develop. In cold weather, a car can act as a refrigerator, holding in the cold and causing the animal to freeze to death.

5. What in your pet’s traveling kit? In addition to travel papers, food, bowl, leash, a waste scoop, plastic bags, grooming supplies, medication and a pet first-aid kit, pack a favorite toy or pillow to give your pet a sense of familiarity.

6. Make sure your pet wears a collar with an ID tag imprinted with your home address, as well as a temporary travel tag with your cell phone, destination phone number, and any other relevant contact information. Canines should wear flat (never choke!) collars, please.

7. Don't allow your pet to ride with his head outside the window. This can subject him to inner ear damage and lung infections, and he could be injured by flying objects.

8. Traveling across state lines? Bring along your pet’s rabies vaccination record, as some states requires this proof at certain interstate crossings. While this generally isn’t a problem, it’s always smart to be on the safe side.

9. When it comes to H2O, we say BYO. Opt for bottled water or tap water stored in plastic jugs. Drinking water from an area he’s not used to could result in tummy upset for your pet.

10. If you travel frequently with your pet, you may want to invest in rubberized floor liners and waterproof seat covers, available at auto product retailers.