Category Archives: pet

Pet-Safe Alternatives to Halloween Treats

Halloween might look a little different this year, but one thing’s for certain—there will still be treats! As tempting as it is to include Fluffy or Fido in the mix, remember that most human treats are best left to humans.

According to the Pet Poison Helpline, the top food-related hazards to pets at Halloween are chocolate, candy, grapes/raisins, and candy wrappers. Foods with the artificial sweetener xylitol can also be poisonous to dogs (and are not recommended for cats either) according to PetMD.

So, how can you treat your pet this Halloween? 🎃

1. Homemade dog “ice cream”

Mix up some canine-friendly ice cream using recipes from PetMD. Here’s one to try (as long as your dog isn’t lactose intolerant): one half can of your dog’s canned food with a quarter cup of plain yogurt and a quarter cup of plain applesauce. Blend using a mixer or a blender, then pour it into a Tupperware container and pop it in the freezer.

2. Wet cat food

If your cat typically receives dry food, consider treating her to her favorite canned food. The first ingredient should be meat, says PetMD, and the food should not contain fillers like rice or corn.

3. Quality time
Will Halloween be a low-key holiday this year? All the better for your pet! Set aside some time to brush your pet, play together, or show him affection.

4. New pet toy
Stimulate your pet’s mind and discourage boredom with a new toy. The Humane Society of the United States and Paws.org have compiled guidelines for choosing safe pet toys; read them here and here.

5. Activity/exercise
Have a game of tug of war, or play indoor fetch with your dog. Let your kitty explore a cat tree or empty cardboard boxes. Remember to keep pet activities in a separate room and away from the front door if you are expecting Halloween visitors this October.

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, Halloween, pet, Pet Safety

Tips and Tricks for a Great Game of Fetch

As summer shows hints of the cooler season to come, it’s the perfect time to play fetch with your dog! Fetch is great for exercise and for releasing your dog’s pent-up energy. Your dog might be a natural, or he might need some practice to grasp the game. Make fetch a part of your playtime repertoire with these tips from WebMD Pets and the American Kennel Club.

  • Start small, with quick indoor games of fetch. When you first take the game outside, choose a time when there aren’t other dogs or people around to minimize distractions.
  • Try modifying a tug-of-war game. After a short game of tug, toss the toy a few inches away so that your dog runs to it, then grab the toy and start another game. Throw it farther away each time. Tug on the toy when it’s in your dog’s mouth to encourage him to come back to you. This should eventually evolve into a fetch-like game. (Read more here.)
  • Or, try a treat-based approach for dogs reluctant to fetch. First, place the toy on the ground. When your dog looks at it, utilize clicker training and reward your dog with a treat. Continue to reward your dog with each interaction until he associates the two. Next, step up your game! Save rewards for when your dog sniffs the toy, puts his mouth on it, or picks it up. After your dog is reliably picking up the toy, encourage him to bring it back to you and reward him when he does. (Read more here.)
  • If your dog will chase a Frisbee, choose one specifically made for dogs so it won’t chip his chompers. Throw it lower to the ground so your dog isn’t jumping high into the air and risking injury.
  • End the fetch game while your dog still wants to play and isn’t bored.

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Filed under Dogs, Fitness, pet

Celebrate Friendship with the Good Dog Table Sculpture

Dogs have always been known as “man’s best friend,” and the Good Dog Sculpture depicts the sentiment with a moment frozen in time.

The resin table sculpture stands on a gray base and shows a dog and woman leaning toward each other, offering support and companionship. In a bronze hue with gold highlights, the camaraderie of two friends warms the heart and stands as a beautiful reminder of the love between owner and pet.

Click here to shop the Good Dog Table Sculpture from Touch of Class®!

Good Dog Table Sculpture

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Filed under Dogs, pet, Pet Owner Gifts, TOC Products, Touch of Class Products

July Is National Pet Hydration Awareness Month

It seems fitting that July is National Pet Hydration Month—we humans are trying to stay hydrated and cool this month too! Whether your pet is soaking up the summer outdoors or chilling indoors with the A/C, hydration is key. 

First of all, how much water does your pet need each day? According to PetMD, your pet needs about a half ounce to one full ounce of water per pound of body weight. As you might expect, large pets will need more water than small ones, and dogs will drink more water than cats. 

To ensure that your pet gets its daily H2O, PetMD recommends providing fresh, clean water that’s easily accessible, supplying multiple water bowls if you’re a multi-pet family, and keeping the water bowl away from noisy areas if your pet seems skittish. 

If you and your dog are out exercising, remember to stop for water breaks, especially if you notice that your dog is panting hard. PetMD recommends providing enough water to quench your pet’s thirst but not allowing large gulps that could lead to stomach upset.

Have a safe (and hydrated) July with your pet!

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, pet, Pet Health

Indoor/Outdoor Pet-Themed Mats from Liora Manne

Add a pop of color to your home while displaying a love for “paws”itively adorable pets. With a balanced combination of both bold and subdued hues, the Liora Manne pet-themed mats are sure to brighten up your home and provide a fun invitation to guests.

These hand-hooked polyester/acrylic mats can be used indoors or outdoors seasonally. Made in China, each mat is .375” thick with a cloth-covered latex backing. Pet-themed mats are available in four designs and three rectangle sizes: 30”x20”, 36”x24”, and 48”x30”.

Click here to shop all Liora Manne Indoor/Outdoor Mats from Touch of Class®!

Stretch your muscles beside three French bulldogs portraying different yoga poses on brightly-colored mats with the Yoga Dogs Mat.

Yoga Dogs Mat

Yellow eyes peer over the edge of the Meow Cat Mat, which depicts a black cat and a black and gray cat with the word “Meow” in teal.

Meow Cat Mat

Against a backdrop of blue sky, seagulls, and a net, set sail alongside a retriever in a captain’s hat sitting before a ship’s wheel, a bulldog in a striped hat, and a black Lab sporting a yellow hat with the Arrf Ye Mateys Mat.

Arrf Ye Mateys Dog Mat

Playfulness abounds with the Cats and Butterflies Mat as two cats, one black and the other black and gray, track three richly-hued butterflies flitting above their heads.

Cats and Butterflies Mat

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, mat, pet, Pet Owner Gifts, TOC Products, Touch of Class Products

June Is National Pet Preparedness Month

Your pet is a part of your family, and preparation for an emergency is important. As a pet parent, it’s your responsibility to include your pet in your emergency and disaster plans. When making or revising your emergency and/or disaster plans, know where your pets are going and have anything they might need ready to go. For more details and a comprehensive list of emergency kit necessities, visit the CDC web site.

  • Plan ahead. If you live in a disaster-prone area, learn what kinds of problems those disasters can present for both you and your pets. If your pets can’t go with you during an evacuation, don’t just leave them at home. Pets need a safe place to stay in an emergency, so find out where they can go ahead of time, and be prepared for the possibility of multiple pets being unable to stay in the same place. Remember: if it’s not safe for you, then it’s not safe for your pet.
  • Create an emergency kit. You’ve made one for your family, but your pet needs one, too. Include food, water, bowls, medications, a litter tray/litter or disposable bags, extra leashes/harnesses, and toys that are easily transportable. Include veterinary information, medical records, and current pictures of your pet in a waterproof container.
  • Stay up-to-date. Make sure the information on your pet’s collar, carrier, and in the disaster kit is current. If your pet is microchipped, ensure that information is up-to-date as well, in case your pet gets lost. Have your pet’s vaccinations updated often, and check clasps on collars regularly.
  • Sheltering in place. Some emergencies require you to take shelter in your home, so establish ahead of time which room is the safest place for you, your family, and your pets to shelter in. The ideal room will have few or no windows and be free of anything that could be toxic to your pet. For small animals, make sure to block off any small spaces they could get stuck in.
  • Returning after an emergency. Changes in routine can make pets irritable, defensive, or aggressive, so keep a close eye on your pet when establishing the new normal. Tell family and any visitors that your pet isn’t his or her usual self so your pet has less reason to lash out, and be aware that the disaster may have disoriented your pet by destroying or changing scent markers.

Pets often mean as much to us as the rest of the family, so make sure you’re including them in your plans, kits, and drills. The more comfortable they are with the routine in case of emergency, the easier it will be to ensure their safety along with your own. For special considerations for animals such as horses or birds, check out the ASPCA web site.

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, pet, Pet Safety

Protect Your Floors with WaterHog Pet Mats

With the days lengthening and summer beckoning you and your pet out more often, you don’t want to spend extra time cleaning mud and dirt off of your floors. The solution? Durable pet mats!

WaterHog® pet mats are USA-made and can be used indoors or outdoors year round. Crafted with an exclusive Water Dam border to keep dirt and water on the mat and off of your floor, these antistatic mats will not mold, mildew, or rot. Place a mat inside or outside your door, or use it as a tray for food and water bowls.

Backed in slip-resistant rubber and available in a variety of colors, each floor accent has a tone-on-tone dimensional pet-related design. The Bark Bark Pet Mat has the repeating word “Bark” and paw prints. The Paws and Bones Mat is patterned with paw prints and dog bones and includes free customization with your pet’s name!

Click here to shop all colors and styles of the “pawsitively” darling WaterHog® mats from the Touch of Class® site.

Bark Bark WaterHog Pet Mat

Paws and Bones Personalized Pet Mat

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Filed under Dogs, mat, pet, Pet Mat, TOC Products, Touch of Class Products

Bound Into Spring! How to Get Your Pet Ready

Spring is coming! Soon you’ll be cleaning and organizing, or finally hauling those Christmas decorations back into storage. During this time where happiness spreads with warmer and sunnier weather, remember that your pet needs some help with spring cleaning, too.

In the spring, you can help your pet shed its winter coat so hair isn’t trailing throughout your home. Your pet relies on you to be aware of how the coming season can affect it: from bugs carrying parasites, to lawn chemicals or plants that can cause harm, to seasonal allergies. Here are a few ways you can help your pet get ready for the season.

1) As your pet begins to shed more than usual in preparation for warmer temps, help her out. Give her a bath and regular brushings to remove loose hair. Not only will this keep her cooler, but it will help keep your home clean and your furniture fur free. And while you’re spring cleaning, wash up her bedding and toys so they smell fresh.

2) Pets can have seasonal allergies, too, although they often show via skin irritation. Watch out for excessive scratching, biting, or licking and contact your vet for how to best treat him. Keep an eye out for grass munching, as well, since some yard treatment chemicals will make him sick. According to Project Pawsitivity, some common seasonal plants like daisies are also toxic to pets. Check out a full plant list here.

3) Warmer weather brings those pesky bugs: fleas, ticks, and mosquitos. As if bites from these bugs weren’t bad enough, they can also carry parasites that could affect your pet’s health. So, before the warmth really sets in, ensure that she has preventative medication for heartworms, fleas, and ticks.

4) Before taking your pet out to enjoy sunny days, make sure his shots are up to date. According to Petcube, having his shots recently updated will cause him less problems if he encounters animals who haven’t had their shots. Also check that his tags and microchip have current information and are readable, and that leashes and collars still fit and aren’t fraying.

5) While humans can exercise throughout the winter in gyms, that’s not always true for our pets. As warm weather rolls in, give her time to adjust to a more active lifestyle. Start with short walks and don’t force her to play if she looks tired. Just like us, your pet’s muscles take time to strengthen.

Pets are just as happy as the rest of us that the sun is shining brighter and the temperature is climbing. But just as we have preventative measures against bugs and allergies, so should our pets. Give them love, care, attention, and help as they prepare for sun-filled days in the ways only they can.

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It’s a Pop Quiz… for Love Your Pet Day!

National Love Your Pet Day has popped up again this year—along with a couple fun quizzes. Spend some quality time with your pet today, whether that means exercise, extra grooming time, or plenty of snuggles and cuddles.

When you have a few minutes of down time, put your knowledge of cats and dogs to the test!

🐱 Cat Quiz 🐱
🐶 Dog Quiz 🐶

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Filed under Cats, Dogs, pet

Make These Pet Resolutions for the New Year

Include your pet in your New Year’s resolutions. Improve your pet’s life alongside your own and find some stress relief along the way. Once there’s a new established routine with your pet, keeping those resolutions will be a little easier!

• Add more playtime or walks to your daily routine. Use feathers on strings to keep your feline’s hunting instincts sharp, or take longer walks to give your dog more socialization time.

• Help your pet with her hygiene—trim her nails, brush her fur, and give her regular baths. Aside from keeping your pet healthy, this gives you a chance to spot any skin or fur issues early on.

• Strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend by showing him more affection. By petting him often and giving him more belly rubs, both of you will benefit emotionally.

• We always want our pets to stay safe, so make sure your pet has a collar and updated ID tags. Get her microchipped in case she wanders off, and avoid anything that might be toxic to her.

This year, think about that little (or big) friend you keep near and make his or her life a little better along with your own. Happy New Year!

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Filed under pet, Pet Health, Pet Safety