“Baby, it’s [really] cold outside”

Idina Menzel and Michael Bublé  Holiday Wishes 2014

Anybody that has watched the news of late knows that some areas of the country have been hit particularly hard with low winter temperatures, high winds and massive snow levels. And returning from a holiday visit to Northern California where the temperature hit 34° one morning, I felt that it is time to remind you how to prepare yourself and your pet for winter.

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National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day

cat face

It’s the day your cat has been waiting for all year… no, not her birthday. January 22nd was National Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day! If you’ve ever owned a cat, you know they make no reservations about sharing their opinions in various ways, but have you ever wondered what they might be curious about? We have 5 guesses. These are the questions we think our cats are dying to ask, and the answers we’d give them.

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6 Steps to Help Train Your Puppy or Dog

Did you know that undesirable pet behavior is one of the leading reasons people re-home their pet or take them to an animal shelter? Training a pet properly can be a hard task. There’s so much for them to learn and many different ways of doing it. But don’t worry! Resources and help are out there. With a little research and a lot of patience, you’ll find your pet following rules like a champ in no time!

January is pet training month. It’s the perfect opportunity to brush up on your pet training skills. This post should help motivate you to get the job done!

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Why Pets Do Not Make Great Holiday Gifts

It’s hard to resist those adorable furry faces! We totally get it. Giving the gift of unconditional love (a.k.a. a cuddly puppy or kitten) seems like a great idea, yes, but there are so many things to take into consideration before buying someone a pet. Whether it’s for your household or someone else’s home, take time to make sure this is exactly what he or she needs.

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Quick Tips and Fun Ways to Include Your Pet on your Big Day

include pet at wedding

(Cue wedding music now) Here comes the cat. All dressed in…?  Wait. What? Did you just say CAT?

Yes, we said cat.

Did you know that thousands of humans include their pet each year in their big day? Do you have a big day approaching and want to have your most loyal furry companion at your side? You’ve come to the right blog.

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How to Prepare Your Pet for Winter Weather

139856735-cold-weather-dog-paw-care-632x475With holiday arrangements in full force, it might be hard to remember to prepare your pet for the colder winter months. You know it’s headed your way and your pet can probably sense it, but what exactly can you do? Take some time to make sure you have everything he or she might need before the freezing temperatures hit hard. Below are 5 ways to help prepare your pet for the colder months ahead.

  1. Your pet has fur, but could they benefit from a nice warm coat or sweater while spending time outdoors? ABSOLUTELY. If you already have a coat from last year packed away take a few minutes to make sure it still fits your pet. Whether your pet enjoys the outdoors or runs in and out only to take care of their business, an extra layer might not be a bad idea. If your pet has never used a coat before, consider taking him and her to the store to get a comfortable fitting. You might also want to introduce the coat or sweater to your pet slowly. Have them wear it for small amounts of time to start off with. Some pets do not enjoy having clothes on.
  1. Put a reminder by the door to check your pet’s feet when they come inside. Whether it’s snow, leaves or any other outdoor debris, checking your dog’s feet as they come indoors is never a bad idea. Snow can get stuck in their fur and cause issues. You might want to leave a floor mat, towel or paw cleaner by the door to help eliminate potential issues.
  1. Refresh your memory on all things that are hazardous to pets this time of year. One to always remember is antifreeze. Dogs are attracted to the smell and it tastes sweat on their tongue. Licking up antifreeze can be very bad for your pet. Holiday poinsettias are also dangerous. Don’t let them take a nibble on this plant! Here are a few more articles that will give you even more tips about pet poison prevention.
  1. You might not want to get your pet as many haircuts. Depending on the dog, it might not be the best idea to keep the same grooming schedule as you do in the warmer months. Does your dog’s groomer keep your pet’s hair a bit longer in the winter or do you prefer it just as short? Do you think your pet will be extremely cold if it snows? Will keeping his or her coat longer cause snow to get stuck in it. This might be a good question for your veterinarian. Depending on the pet and how many coats your pet has, adjusting your grooming schedule might be a wise idea. Changing up the type of shampoo you use can also be beneficial. Try a shampoo with added moisturizers.
  1. Keep an eye on your pet’s skin. Just like humans, the cold can cause issues for your pet’s skin. Keep an eye out for redness, cuts and dryness. If you see signs of skin irritations limit the time your pet spends outdoors. You might even need to visit the vet. Pay close attention to your pet after they go outside each time. A lot of dogs enjoy the snow, which can cause issues to the paw pads, nose and ears. Keep an eye out and you might be able to spot any problems.

Do you have any ideas for pet owners to help prepare their pets for the colder months? Share them with us on our Facebook page.

It’s Not Too Late! Include Your Pet in Your New Year’s Resolutions

546351_10151314724573550_1333252963_n1Year after year, we make New Year’s Resolutions to change our ways for good, or to resolve to do something differently for the betterment of ourselves and/or others. This year, we want to encourage pet owners to make changes for life – not just the new year. We want to encourage a commitment to a healthier 2016 for you AND your furry family members!

Why not have your pet join in the fun this year? Are you already exercising? Bring your pet along. Have you planned to eat healthier? Put your pet on a nutritious diet, too! We challenge you to think about your current resolution list. Modify your list to include your pet. Below are a few easy ways to include your pet in your 2016 New Year’s Resolutions.

  • Make exercise regular for you and your pet. We know it’s hard to get outside when the weather is cold and the sidewalks are snowy (unless you are in Tempe, AZ like us), but there are many great ways to exercise without having to go outside. You can play games, throw a lightweight ball or play with a laser pointer. If you have tolerable weather, allow your pet to join in your outside activities. A few articles around the web suggest trying yoga with your pet or taking your dog running with you. WedMD gives several great ideas in a recent article that includes swimming and walking with your dog.
  • Eat healthier. Offer your pet treats that you know are nutritious. Could your dog benefit from a little weight loss? Cut down on the treats and increase the healthier snacks. Dogs can have treats; they just don’t need more than one at a time.Pet-Exercise
  • Give your pet a daily multivitamin. Have you made a commitment to start taking your daily vitamins routinely? Include your pet in this important plan! Supplement your pet’s balanced diet with a daily vitamin formulated specifically for your pet’s age and therapeutic needs.
  • Optimize joint function and comfort. Did you know that joint issues are very common in pets and humans? We have a hip and joint supplement available exclusively at PetSmart that can help pets get ahead of these issues.
  • Get organized. Many people resolve to get organized in the new year. We recommend starting off on the right paw by maintaining a calendar that includes your pet’s schedule, as well as yours. There are may phone apps available to download that can help you remember crucial dates for your pet. Schedule and set up reminders for their annual health checks, pet playdates, daily walks, grooming appointments and more. Getting appointments and meetings organized and on a list of to dos’ will most definitely help you stay on track this year.

A healthy pet is a happy pet! If a healthier and happier you is on your list of resolutions this year, remember to include your pet in this important plan. Here at 21st Century Animal Healthcare, we are committed to offering you the best pet health products on the market. 21st Century HealthCare, is one of the largest international manufacturers of human vitamins and companion animal supplements. 21st Century has been manufacturing pet supplements for over 15 years. So, we are committed to you and your pets!

Happy New Year! Good luck with the changes you’ve decided to make in 2016. Please keep following our blog for great pet tips, how to articles and much more.

Image source: From flickr by