Today marks one of the most adorable, fur-filled holidays of the year: National Puppy Day! This is a great opportunity to not only celebrate our love for puppies, but to talk about important issues facing puppies nationwide. Here are a few ways to commemorate this special day:
Decide if your family is ready to bring home a puppy. If you’ve considered adding a puppy to your family, it’s important to consider the time commitment and responsibilities. Puppies require a lot of attention to ensure they grow up to be happy, confident dogs. Learn more about preparing for a puppy.
Talk to your kids about pet store puppies. While that puppy in the store window may adorable, purchasing a puppy from a pet shop supports the cruel puppy mill industry. These large-scale dog breeding facilities prioritize profit over the well-being of the dogs, cramming them into overcrowded, stacked cages. Even though the puppies may get to leave the mill, their parents are stuck there for years breeding more puppies in these terrible conditions. Use our handy guide for talking points as you chat with your kids about pet store puppies.
Are you worried you may have items in your home that are poisonous to your pet? As parents, we are reminded to baby- and kid-proof our homes, but it’s also necessary to pet-proof them. Each year, thousands of pets accidentally ingest common but dangerous household materials, and the culprits are often surprising: items including onions, grapes and garden mulch are offenders.
In honor of Poison Prevention Week, we’re holding a live Twitter chat with Dr. Tina Wismer, Medical Director of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. Join us on Wednesday, March 18 from 2:00 to 3 P.M. EST as Dr. Wismer answers all your questions about protecting pets from harmful substances!
We’ll also test your pet poison knowledge with a few trivia questions. Three participants will receive ASPCA swag bags—and one grand-prize winner will receive an Emergency Ready Deluxe Pet First Aid Kit!
Keri Matthews, a mom of two, has worked in the ASPCA’s licensing department for more than five years. She lives on Long Island with her husband, Tom, her children, Gabriella and Tommy, and their Greyhound, Clyde.
This time of year, many of us are looking forward to the sunny, warmer and longer days ahead. Having more outdoor time with our pets benefits our whole family—we can’t wait to take our dog, Clyde for longer walks with our kids, Gabriella and Tommy. We also will be going back to the dog park, and the kids love to look at how Clyde interacts with “his friends.”
One of Clyde’s favorite things to do in the warmer months is to take a bath outside and dry off in the sun, lying in the grass with a bowl of water nearby. The kids love to sit in the sun on their towels and soak up the rays next to him! We’re also planning to take more trips to the pet supply store in the upcoming weeks. Our most recent trip was really fun—for the first time, Gabriella picked out a new treat jar for Clyde, and this got her more excited than even picking out Clyde’s treats. Tommy picked the treats this time and enjoyed carrying them around the store.
What are you looking forward to doing with your pet in the warmer months ahead? Please share in the comments!
Emily Schneider is a proud mom of two feisty Yorkies and a two-year-old in the Garden State. Emily works in media and public relations for the ASPCA. Find her onTwitter.
Brrrr: The temperature was in the single digits earlier this week! I don’t think I’m the only one who is tired of the frigid, cold weather. We’ve been hit by blizzards and freezing temperatures, and I struggle to keep my dogs outside long enough for them to use the bathroom—let alone keep my son preoccupied without having to turn on my automatic babysitter (i.e. the TV).
If you’re stuck indoors, baking is a great activity to do with your kids, and your pets can benefit as well!! I won’t pretend I’m a gourmet chef, but here is a simple recipe for homemade, cheesy dog biscuits:
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
1 cup quick oats
¼ cup margarine
1 cup boiling water
¾ cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons veggie stock
½ cup milk (dairy or soy)
¾ cup shredded Cheddar cheese (or other cheese)
1 egg, beaten
3 cups whole wheat flour
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix quick oats, margarine and boiling water in a large bowl. Let sit for a few minutes.
Stir in cornmeal, sugar, veggie stock, milk, cheese and egg. Mix in flour, one cup at a time, until the mixture forms dough.
Roll dough flat to a thickness similar to a notepad.
Use cookie cutter to cut out fun shapes and place cookies one inch apart on non-stick foil pan.
Bake 30-40 minutes in the oven until the cookies are golden brown.
Voila! That wasn’t too hard, was it? I recommend whipping up a few human cookies as well so both your two and four-legged kids are happy on a snow day.
And remember, if your pet has any dietary restrictions, always check with your veterinarian before you bake homemade treats. Enjoy!
This winter has been brutally cold in many parts of the country, and there seems to be no end in sight! Whether your family loves to play in the snow or prefers to stay inside by the fireplace, we can’t always avoid braving the elements with our pets in tow.
Check out our cold weather infographic for tips to keep your pets safe and warm this winter: