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Valentine’s Day Do’s and Don’ts for Pet Lovers with Videos and Photos

Video:  Valentine’s Day Pets

Video: Valentine’s Day: The Love of Animals

By Dr. Becker

Many pet owners include their furry loved ones in Valentine’s Day celebrations.

And who better to celebrate on St. Valentine’s Day than the one devoted soul in your life who offers true unconditional love?

Valentine’s Day Do’s

If you’d like to do something special for your four-legged companion on February 14th, here are a few neat ideas:

  • Make an appointment to have professional photos taken of your pet, or hire an artist to paint a portrait of your dog, cat, or other favorite critter.
  • Make a permanent clay print of your pet’s paw with a special kit.
  • If your dog has a favorite activity like riding in the car, hiking a trail with you, or retrieving a tennis ball over and over and over (and over), carve out a couple hours on or around Valentine’s Day and indulge him.
  • Skip the heart-shaped carb-heavy pet treats and invest the money instead in a small amount of an excellent quality raw, canned or dehydrated dog or cat food.
  • Set aside 15 minutes to a half hour and give your animal companion your undivided attention. Don’t multi-task during this small window of time. Allow no interruptions. Do nothing but focus on your pet. Soak up her animal energy.
    You can spend the time just petting or massaging your pet, bathing or grooming her, or doing an
    at-home wellness exam. You can take your dog for a short, invigorating walk. Engage your kitty with her favorite toy. Chat with your bird. Set your pocket pet free to investigate a bit of the world outside her cage.

…and a Few Don’ts

Human celebrations of Valentine’s Day tend to involve things that can be harmful to pets, including potentially toxic flower and plant arrangements, chocolate, wine or other adult beverages, and candlelit dinners.

  • If you’re thinking of buying a plant or flower arrangement for your pet-owning sweetie, check the list of toxic plants for animals, or visit the ASPCA.org for their list of both toxic and non-toxic plants.
  • If candy is on your V Day shopping list, keep in mind chocolate is toxic to both cats and dogs. And the darker the chocolate, the more toxic.
    Chocolate contains a caffeine-like stimulant substance that when ingested by your pet can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hyperactivity, racing pulse and seizures. Also, the fat content in chocolate can wreak havoc with a pet’s pancreas.
  • Needless to say, any sort of alcoholic beverage is dangerous for pets. And it doesn’t take more than a tiny bit to bring on vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, central nervous system depression, tremors, breathing difficulties and coma.
  • If dinner by candlelight is on the agenda for Valentine’s Day, be sure to keep the flames well out of the reach of curious pets. And safely extinguish burning candles before you leave a room.

Here’s wishing you and your loved one(s) (on two legs or four), a warm, safe and wonderful Valentine’s Day!

 

Our Gang

bestbuddies_thumb3rd B-Day Angelina & Princess 061

Angel and Apachi (Valentine’s Day 2007)      -     Princess Giving Tim a Big Hug and Kiss

3rd B-Day Angelina & Princess 057angelina-worried-about-her-dads-bandaged-foot-05-01-10_thumb

Mama Angel and Angelina hugging before Game time    -    Papa Apachi and Angelina Sunning Themselves

Angel and Apachi Sharing a Nap in Tim’s Chair     -    Angelina and Princess Hugging as Pups

‘Until One Has Loved an Animal, Part of Their Sour Remains Unawakened’

 

The World’s Most Unusual Valentines Went to the Dogs

Help Chained Dogs This Valentine’s Day… and Every Day!

Animal amore! The creatures that show it’s not only humans who like to get up close and personal on Valentine’s Day

February 14, 2012 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, animal behavior, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets | , , , , | 2 Comments

The World’s Most Unusual Valentines Went to the Dogs

16,880 Valentines delivered to America’s ‘Forgotten Dogs’  -  by Dogs Deserve Better on Wednesday, February 16, 2011 at 11:33am

Tipton, PA, February 16, 2011—16,880 Valentines were delivered this week to some very unusual recipients: dogs. Dogs of every breed, size, and color may have received one, but all that did had one thing in common—they are America’s ‘Forgotten Dogs.’

Dogs Deserve Better, a national rescue and advocacy group dedicated to ending the suffering endured by chained  and penned dogs, annually sends Valentines and dog treat coupons to canines across the country. The 2011 campaign has reached a milestone: almost 17,000 dogs received Valentines between February 7-14, yet this was still a drop in the bucket compared to the amount of dogs living on chains and in pens across the United States.

Dogs of every breed, size, shape and color end up outside through no fault of their own. Caretakers claim they are not housetrained, too big for the house, or too dirty to be inside. Yet through it all dogs just want to be with humans, part of our pack, and putting a dog outside for life when he/she becomes a burden is not an acceptable solution.

The mailing includes a Valentine for the dog and a brochure for the dog’s caretakers, explaining why the practice of chaining dogs for life is a form of abuse and neglect. The materials encourage people to bring their dogs into the home and family or to find better homes for the animals.

“We call these dogs the Forgotten Dogs, because they may technically have a home, but do they really? Left alone in the elements, enduring extreme heat and cold, often withstanding inadequate or no shelter, food, or water, there’s no doubt that these dogs suffer, and suffer immensely. Winter is a critical time to reach out directly to the people who chain their dogs, and what better excuse than Valentine’s Day to send these forgotten animals a little love,” says Tamira Thayne, founder and director of the nine-year-old non-profit.

“Every winter our rescuers see dogs that have frozen in the snow, suffered frostbite, or otherwise endured horrific living conditions because of the longstanding misperception that it is ok to chain a dog and let it out there for life. It isn’t.”

“This is the perfect opportunity for people who pass chained dogs every day but feel powerless to help them to make a difference,” continues Thayne. “People anonymously provide us with the addresses of these dogs, or make us a batch of Valentines, and we do the rest.”

Schools, scouting troops, and other similar organizations and individuals from 37 states created the Valentines, expressing love and such unusual sentiments like ‘Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, Your Dog is Sad, You Know it’s True.’

Every state in the nation had at least one dog receive a Valentine, with Pennsylvania having the most, where Valentines were mailed to 2,229 dogs. Ohio had the second highest amount, at 1384, and Texas was third with 835.

Although the practice of 24/7 chaining is pervasive in many parts of the country, states and cities have started to pass laws against the practice. So far four states have passed limitations on chaining: California, Texas, Connecticut, and Nevada. Hundreds of cities and counties have passed limitations or flat-out bans.

Meanwhile, countless backyard dogs are spending yet another winter in the cold. Often, they shiver day and night in hole-riddled doghouses, suffer from thirst because their water is frozen, and pace neurotically from lack of exercise and attention. Perpetually chained dogs often become aggressive from their constant confinement, thereby posing a danger to people, especially small children.

For more information about the Valentine’s Day outreach, go tohttp://www.dogsdeservebetter.org/vdaywrap2011.html or email info@dogsdeservebetter.org.

For general information about Dogs Deserve Better go to www.dogsdeservebetter.org.

END

Contact: Tamira Ci Thayne • founder, Dogs Deserve Better • www.dogsdeservebetter.org

P.O. Box 23, Tipton, PA 16684 • 1.877.636.1408 • 814.941.7447

February 17, 2011 Posted by | Dogs, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, NO KILL NATION, Stop Animal Cruelty, Stop Euthenization, We Are All God's Creatures | | 1 Comment

Valentines Day For And With Your Pets

This Valentine Holiday Reward the Dog or Cat Who Loves You Best

For your pet, you are the center of the universe. Reward his devotion this Valentine’s Day with a special gift.

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Your pet is a member of the family, and he deserves to be remembered on Valentine’s Day. Sometimes our pets seem like the only ones who understand us. On special holidays, don’t forget their contribution; include them in the festivities and remember them when the time comes for gift giving. After all, human partners come and go, but your furry or feathery companion is always there for you.

Explore the World of Pet Gifts this Valentine’s Day

Instead of the usual chew toy or catnip mouse, explore some of the new and interesting products available for your pets. From designer outfits to gourmet biscuits, it’s a whole new world when it comes to pet products. You may not be interested in the extravagance of a dog stroller that keeps Fido’s feet dry when he takes an excursion through the park, or a cat enclosure that will allow you to take puss along with you on your dog’s walk, but self-cleaning litter boxes, GPS tracking chips, and herbal essences that are designed to be used like aromatherapy might just fit the bill when it comes to remembering your pet on Valentine’s Day.

Consider Your Pet’s Personality When Buying a Gift

You know your pet has a unique personality, and it’s also important to remember that he has emotions, fears, and routines, too. Some pets are very physically active, some are vain, some like to be the life of the party, and others enjoy a good puzzle. With a little thought and some research, you’ll know the type of products your pet will appreciate, and have an idea where to get the best deal on them.

Internet sites as well as the large pet supply outlets have made these products readily available, and you don’t have to search very far to find impressive product offerings.

Give Your Pet the Gift of Health and Safety on Valentine’s Day

While you are looking for ways to thank your pet for all of the things he does for you, don’t forget to educate yourself about his needs. Are his inoculations current? Does he have pet insurance? In a health emergency, would you know what to do until help arrives? Many pets die needlessly every year as a result of ingesting human foods that are poisonous to them.

Do you know about the common foods that could hurt or kill your pet?

German Shephard with Heart

Valentine’s Day can be as much fun for pets as it is for humans if dangerous foods, flora and other items are kept out of paws’ reach. Each year our poison control experts see a rise in cases around February 14, many involving chocolate and lilies, a flower that’s potentially fatal to cats. So please heed our experts’ advice—don’t leave the goodies lying around on Lover’s Day.

Pet-Safe Bouquets

Many pet owners are still unaware that all species of lily are potentially fatal to cats. When sending a floral arrangement, specify that it contain no lilies if the recipient has a cat—and when receiving an arrangement, sift through and remove all dangerous flora. If your pet is suffering from symptoms such as stomach upset, vomiting or diarrhea, he may have ingested an offending flower or plant. Use our online toxic and nontoxic plant libraries as visual guides of what and what not should be in your bouquets.

Forbidden Chocolate

Seasoned pet lovers know the potentially life-threatening dangers of chocolate, including baker’s, semi sweet, milk and dark. In darker chocolates, methylxanthines—caffeine-like stimulants that affect gastrointestinal, neurologic and cardiac function—can cause vomiting/diarrhea, hyperactivity, seizures and an abnormally elevated heart rate. The high-fat content in lighter chocolates can potentially lead to a life-threatening inflammation of the pancreas. Go ahead and indulge, but don’t leave chocolate out for chowhounds to find.

Careful with Cocktails

Spilled wine, half a glass of champagne, some leftover liquor are nothing to cry over until a curious pet laps them up. Because animals are smaller than humans, a little bit of alcohol can do a lot of harm, causing vomiting, diarrhea, lack of coordination, central nervous system depression, tremors, difficulty breathing, metabolic disturbances and even coma. Potentially fatal respiratory failure can also occur if a large enough amount is ingested.

Life Is Sweet

So don’t let pets near treats sweetened with xylitol. If ingested, gum, candy and other treats that include this sweetener can result in a sudden drop in blood sugar known as hypoglycemia. This can cause your pet to suffer depression, loss of coordination and seizures.

Every Rose Has Its Thorn

Don’t let pets near roses or other thorny stemmed flowers. Biting, stepping on or swallowing their sharp, woody spines can cause serious infection if a puncture occurs. “It’s all too easy for pets to step on thorns that fall to the ground as a flower arrangement is being created,” says Dr. Louise Murray, Director of Medicine for the ASPCA’s Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital. De-thorn your roses far away from pets.

Playing with Fire

It’s nice to set your evening a-glow with candlelight, but put out the fire when you leave the room. Pawing kittens and nosy pooches can burn themselves or cause a fire by knocking over unattended candles.

Wrap it Up

Gather up tape, ribbons, bows, wrapping paper, cellophane and balloons after presents have been opened—if swallowed, these long, stringy and “fun-to-chew” items can get lodged in your pet’s throat or digestive tract, causing her to choke or vomit.

The Furry Gift of Life?

Giving a cuddly puppy or kitten may seem a fitting Valentine’s Day gift—however, returning a pet you hadn’t planned on is anything but romantic. Companion animals bring with them a lifelong commitment, and choosing a pet for someone else doesn’t always turn out right

February 15, 2010 Posted by | Just One More Pet, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , | 1 Comment

Help Chained Dogs This Valentine’s Day

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has called for dog lovers to support the Dogs Deserve Better group in it’s efforts to end the practice of perpetually chaining dogs.

Help Chained Dogs This Valentine's Day

This Valentine’s Day, Dogs Deserve Better will be sending Valentine’s Day cards and dog treat coupons to the owners of chained dogs across the country during it’s “Have a Heart for Chained Dogs” week. The gift is accompanied by a brochure for the dog’s owner, explaining why the practice is a form of abuse and encouraging them to bring their dog indoors or to re-home the animal. This year the group hopes to send 15,000 such packages.

The HSUS points out that because dogs are social animals they need regular interaction with their family, and that chained dogs will experience boredom, loneliness, and isolation, which will eventually lead to territorial and aggressive behavior. This is illustrated by the fact that almost 300 children were killed or seriously injured by chained dogs in 2003, with a recent high-profile case being that of 2 year-old Matthew Clayton Hurt who was killed in Arkansas in October 2009 by a chained dog protecting her puppies. California, Maryland and Nevada have all passed laws that limit the tethering of dogs, with Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Maine, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas and Washington currently working on laws that will limit this activity.

The charity wants dog owners across the country to take action to help end the practice by assisting the Dogs Deserve Better group in identifying chained dogs. If you know of a perpetually chained dog you can anonymously provide the dog’s address to the group. Other ways members of the public can assist is in making Valentine’s Day cars, donating pet treat coupons and donating directly.

Photograph courtesy Dogs Deserve Better.

Source: Pet People’s Place

Posted:  Just One More Pet

January 21, 2010 Posted by | animal abuse, animal behavior, animals, Just One More Pet, Pet Abuse, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Valentine’s Day Treats For Your Dog…

Hearts Now that you’ve celebrated… Do something extra nice for your dog(s) for Valentine’s Day:
  • take your dog out for a good walk;
  • play ball with your dog in the yard;
  • give your dog a good brushing;
  • give your dog an extra dog treat;
  • pet your dog longer than usual;
  • let your dog into the house more today; or let them do something special;
  • snuggle with your dog when you’re watching TV; 
  • Set things up for your dog’s future in the event something happens to you
Two dogs out for a walk in the snow.

February 17, 2009 Posted by | Animal Rights And Awareness, Just One More Pet, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, Political Change, responsible pet ownership, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment