snips general tips... 
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designed to improve the relationship you have with your animal companion
I never thought about that
ideas that could save your sanity... or your companion animal's life
A little investment
of time can make a huge difference in both your lives

snips believes that the key to the companion animal
overpopulation issue is education

Education can make the difference between an unruly or chronically unhealthy
dog that winds up being dumped at a shelter and one that is well
behaved and healthy and has a long, wonderful life by your side.

Education can keep a litter of puppies or kittens that
will never get a chance to know a happy, loving home from ever being born.

Just a little time spent learning
about these aspects of animal guardianship can turn you into your companion animal's hero!

Good places to
start exploring are:

nutrition & health
safety & general care

safety and general care...
Never leave you companion animal in a vehicle unattended, even for a minute, when the temperature is over 65 degrees. Even in the shade with the windows open, temperatures will climb rapidly, and your animal risks brain damage or death.

Do not allow your dog to ride untethered in the back of an open pickup. In the event of even a minor accident, your dog could be thrown from the vehicle. It risks serious injury to both your companion animal and other motorists who may swerve to avoid him should be thrown into traffic.

Restraints are a good idea even when your companion animal rides inside the car. They keep him out of your way while you are driving, and keep him from being thrown from or through the vehicle in the event of an accident. If you are injured in an accident, emergency workers won't have to worry about him keeping them from entering the vehicle, or about him escaping and getting lost when they try to reach you.

If your dog or cat wears a leash while riding in the car, make sure that the leash doesn't get caught in the door. A dangling leash can catch on something in the road or on the car and strangle your companion animal.

Be careful of common household products which could prove fatal to your companion animal. Antifreeze poisoning is common because antifreeze has a sweet taste that dogs and cats are attracted to. And it doesn't take much to kill your companion animal. Unless caught in the very early stages, antifreeze poisoning is fatal. If you see your companion animal staggering or acting drunk, it could be a sign that she has ingested antifreeze. These symptoms only last a brief time, but don't delay in seeking veterinary attention!

Many other household products can poison your companion animal. Remember, your companion animal will walk across your newly cleaned floor or carpet animal and then lick her paws. Vinegar and water makes a safe multipurpose household cleaner.

Always check before bringing a new houseplant home. Many varieties are poisonous.

If your companion animal wears a choke collar, never tie him by attaching the chain to the choke ring. It's best to never leave a choke collar on an unattended dog.

Never feed your dog cooked bones. They are brittle, and can splinter and cause serious internal injuries.

Take a course or read a book on animal emergencies. The Red Cross offers an excellent book which can help you take care of your companion animal until help is available in an emergency.

A cat loves warm, dark places. Teach him that the clothes drier is off limits, and always check before starting a drier that's been left open.

Never give your companion animal human medications without consulting with your veterinarian. Common remedies such as Tylenol can be fatal.

Dental floss and thread should always be kept out of your companion animal's reach. If ingested, they can cause serious internal injury.

Don't forget to keep up with your companion animal's grooming. Make it a habit to clean her ears and teeth on a regular basis, too. Dental decay can cause serious health problems, and most animals come to enjoy the taste of the special dog or cat toothpaste.

Want to help your companion animal live a long and healthy life? Want to save on vet bills? Then take a good long look at what you're feeding her. Read the labels. Are there lots of byproducts? Things you can't pronounce? Does it sound healthy? Unless you're feeding a high quality pet or health food store brand of food, it's probably not. Companion animal foods are made out of the human food industry's waste products. That means moldy grains, 4 D meat (from dead, dying or diseased animals) and other things you don't even want to know about that are rendered together and turned into dog and cat kibble.

Payoffs from feeding healthy? Lower vet bills, fewer fleas and ticks, less poop scooping. Animals on healthy foods have a shine to their coats and eyes that is unmistakable! Interested in finding out more?

spaying and neutering...
There are so many benefits to having your companion animal spayed neutered.

Usually stops tom cats from "spraying" foul smelling urine in the house.

Reduces the annoying and embarrassing urge of male dogs to "mount" children and adults' legs.

Reduces aggression toward other animals. It decreases fights.

Eliminates estrous or "heat" periods, no bloody discharge.

Eliminates the scent that attracts males.

Eliminates the frantic pacing and crying by the female while in heat. (Cats are especially vocal at that time.)

Eliminates your companion animal's desire to seek out a female and reduces the risks involved with a free roaming animal (car accidents, etc.).

Reduces or eliminates the risk of prostate problems, testicular, uterine and ovarian cancer and mammary tumors.

Eliminates the problems and potential risks involved in giving birth.

Rids you of the worry of what to do with an unplanned litter of pups or kittens.

Lets your companion animal relax and enjoy being part of the family.
More spay/neuter information.

A little obedience training can make the difference between a companion animal who's fun and easy to be around and one who makes your life miserable. Establishing your authority in a kind, gentle, consistent way by teaching your dog to sit, down, stay, come and wait will carry over into all aspects of your relationship.

For example, your dog has been outside playing. You call her in to eat. Rather than sitting patiently for you to put her bowl down, she jumps all over you, leaving you covered in muddy pawprints. You're mad. She's banished. She's worse the next time because she's been lonely. She doesn't understand why you're mad, so she gets frustrated. She scratches the door, potties on the rug. If she had some guidelines, she'd understand what was expected of her. A dog who can walk quietly by your side, keep four paws on the floor and respond to simple commands is a pleasure to be around. Read "A Tale of Two Pups."

And who knows, maybe someday she'll even fetch your slippers.


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