Are you considering a new pet for Christmas?

This is a popular time of year for animals purchases and adoptions. While I don’t want to discourage animal adoptions, I feel anyone considering giving an animal as a gift this holiday should evaluate the situation before proceeding further. Sadly, many animals given as gifts end up in shelters at the start of the new year. Here are some things to consider:

  1. Does the recipient want an animal? While a new puppy sounds like a nice surprise, it isn’t fair to either the animal or the person to expect someone who did not ask for a new dog to be prepared to take care of it.
  2. Is the recipient prepared for the responsibility? Kids are notorious for asking for a new cat or dog for Christmas, but are they prepared to take on the responsibility of a pet? If not, are you THE PARENT ready to take on the responsibility of a new animal?
  3. Does the recipient have enough time, money, and energy to care for this pet? Regardless of whether a person wants and feels they are ready for an animal, do you truly think the person’s lifestyle will allow for this animal?
  4. Is this the right animal for the recipient? Selecting a new animal should not be done on impulse. Often, it takes quite a bit of time to find the right animal for a certain person, household, or family. Plus, many people would probably prefer to select their own pet based on certain criteria.

Remember, many animals such as dogs or cats are going to be around for 13 or more years! They are not like toys that kids can just tire of and throw in the back of their closets. Even smaller animals such as gheckos, lizards, and birds can be around for a long time. Also, many animals require special habitats and accessories that you will have to buy, such as heat lamps, special food, etc. Even most fish cannot be put in a simply glass bowl! So please think long and hard about giving an animal as a gift this Christmas. If you have considered these things and have decided to give an animal this Christmas, please consider adopting. There are millions of animals in shelters that would love a home for Christmas (not just dogs & cats, but lizards, birds, rabbits, and more!)


Keep your furry friends safe this Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to gather with family. For many of us, pets are part of our family and we want them to share in the festivties; however, Thanksgiving can pose some extra risks to our furry and feathered companions. Here are some helpful tips to ensure that both you and your animal friends have a fun, happy Thanksgiving.

  • Thanksgiving meals often occur earlier in the day. If it is close enough to your pet’s normal feeding time, feed him/her their normal meal before guests arrive. If guests will be arriving too early, feed your pet at his/her normal feeding time. Animals do better with a routine and this will also help cut back on their begging or stealing.
  • If you are going to share some of your holiday meal with your dog or cat, give them a small portion of plain turkey. Ensure there are NO BONES. Bones can cause choking and/or splinter and injure your pet, and/or get lodged in her or her stomach/intestines. Rich, fatty foods such as turkey skin, ham, mashed potatoes, butter, and gravy can upset your pet’s stomach. Bread can cause discomfort and bloat. Onions and garlic are poisonous to dogs.
  • Do not feed your animal chocolate; it can be fatal. Sugar and sweets are also unhealthy, as they can cause kidney failure in dogs and are difficult for animals to digest. Ensure that all sweets are out of your animal’s reach.
  • Make sure all aluminum foil, plastic wrap, wax paper, toothpicks, skewers, and string. Animals like to play with these materials, especially when covered with food, but they pose fatal risks. Also, cover or enclose your trashcan well. Cats and dogs can be notorious food hounds and you wouldn’t want them finding a turkey bone in the trash and choking on it.
  • Inform your guests. Ask them to not feed the animals table scraps. Also, notify them about whether or not your animal is allowed outside. Make sure they know to close to door behind themselves.
  • It is a good idea to not allow your cats outside on Thanksgiving, even if you allow them out at other times. One reason is because many people have guests over, meaning there are a lot of cars coming and going. This puts your cat in extra danger of being hit. Also, during winter cats like to crawl up inside cars or tire wells, which can often be fatal. (It is best to keep cats indoors all winter for this reason.)
  • If applicable, ensure your pet has current ID tags incase they slip out the door.
  • Give your pet a chance to relax away from guests. Put them in another room where they can de-stress and take a nap. A walk with you canine buddy is also a good idea. Animals can become overly excited or even stressed out with all the guests and commotion.
  • Do not forget about your pet’s needs. It is easy to get caught up in the festivities and guests, but make sure to check on your pet, give him/her attention, and ensure they have fresh clean water.
  • If you’re traveling, don’t wait until the last minute to make arrangements for your pet. If you are leaving your pet at home, make sure you have a pet sitter or a reservation at a boarding facility/your vet lined up. If travelling with your pet, do not wait until the last minute to pack all of your pet’s necessities. Write a list and double check it.
  • Do not take dogs to Thanksgiving Day parades. The crowds can be overwhelming for dogs and cause them to panic or stress out. This increases their chances of accidentally getting lost in the crowd.
Information from HERE and HERE.

Wishbones for Pets Month!

Professional pet sitters from around the country and Canada will be offering a pet supply and fund drive approximately six weeks prior to Thanksgiving with all the proceeds going to their favorite pet related charity in your community.

Traditionally there are food drives for people during the holiday season. It’s only natural pet sitters want to help pets that need a forever home. Many pet sitters will be asking for donations or pet goods to help a local charity of their choice There will be drop boxes at local business establishments who have agreed to sponsor this event. Look for ads and signs promoting it!

Wishbones for Pets will be to pet sitters what Toys for Tots is to the Marines! 

There are many pet lovers that would like to help animals in need.  Sometimes they just need a little leadership, example and organization.  As pet sitters we can make a difference and Wishbones for Pets can help you. Click the banner below if you are a pet sitter and would like to run an official Wishbones for Pets drive:

If you’re a pet lover, shelter worker, or rescue volunteer and would like a Wishbones for Pets drive for your shelter, contact a local pet sitter and tell them to get involved! You can only organize an official drive if you are a professional pet sitter. Of course, anyone can run their own animal food drive for the holiday season!

Click HERE to visit the Wishbones for Pets official site!

Keep your pets safe this Halloween!

Here are some helpful tips to keep your pets safe this Halloween weekend:

  • Do no leave your pet outside on Halloween, unless you are with him/her. Animals have been victims to many horrible Halloween pranks. Cats, especially black cats, seem to have the highest risk. Pranksters have been known to steal, injure, tease, and even kill animals on Halloween.
  • Keep your pet in a quiet place, away from trick-or-treaters and any other activities that might be going on (parties, etc.). Animals can become easily stressed with people constantly coming to the door or going in and out of the house. Plus, you’ll want to make sure your cat or dog has no chance of running out the door when you’re handing out candy!
  • Keep the candy away from your pets! This goes for every type of animal, from cat to bird, to exotic. Many animals have a sweet tooth and will eat trick-or-treat candy if they can get it. Chocolate is poisonous to many animals. The chewy candy or large gum balls can choke an animal. Another warning: animals are attracted to the shiny wrappers many candies comes in. They can eat it and suffer severe problems and/or die.
  • Place anything with a live flame out of your pet’s reach. They can knock it over and/or burn themselves.
  • Inspect/examine/modify/do away with your pet’s costume. While animals often look cute when dressed up, costumes are usually pretty uncomfortable for them. It can also pose several health and safety risks. If you insist on putting your animal in a costume, examine the costume before putting in on your pet. Make sure there are no parts the animals could chew and choke on, that there are no flowing or long parts that could catch on something and choke your pet, and make sure nothing on the costume impairs your pet’s breathing, hearing, or site.
  • Don’t take the dog trick-or-treating. Dogs can become freightened in this situation with many people running around in strange costumes. He could easily slip our of your or your childrens’ grasp and get lost.
  • Keep all decorations that would be tempted for animals to chew on or play with out of their reach. Fake spiderwebs or streamers can cause very severe internal problems if ingested. Also, watch any extra power cords out of their reach. Chewing or playing with wires could cause electric shock.

I hope your and your animal companions have a wonderful and safe Halloween!

    National Dog Week

    The fourth week of September is National Dog Week! Go out of your way to show some extra attention and affection to that favorite dog in your life. If you don’t have a dog, consider adopting one. If that isn’t feasible, consider fostering for a rescue. Everyone should experience the love of a dog, and vice-versa.

    Here are the top ten reasons to love a dog:

    10. Dogs are always willing to play.

    9. Dogs give the biggest, bestest, wettest kisses.

    8. Dogs are a great way to stay healthy & active.

    7.  Dogs make great pillows!

    6. Dogs have an uncanny knack of leaving you little surprises when you don’t need them the most.

    5. Dogs keep your couch/chair/bed warm while you’re away.

    4. Dogs are the first ones to greet you at the door when you come home.

    3. Dogs are fierce protectors of their family and home.

    2. A dog’s eyes say more than words ever could.

    1. Dogs = unconditional love