Archive for June, 2009

Stop the Fleas…PLEASE!

Posted on June 29, 2009. Filed under: 3. Trainer On Call | Tags: , , |

It’s that time of year and fleas are everywhere.  It is very important to keep your pets on flea control.  In San Diego it is usually needed year round, but this time of year especially.  If you have a puppy or kitten too young for flea control, use a flea comb to remove the fleas.  This is very important.  Kittens and puppies can get flea anemia, which can be fatal if they are infested.

You can find a number of flea products at your local pet store.  Stay away from the cheap brands like Hartz etc.  I have seen cases where the pets actually got sick.  I also don’t recommend the flea baths or dips you find from pet stores.    They cost more, but the veterinary brands are much better for your pet.  Stick to the products like Advantage, Revolution, Frontline or Comfortis.  Every pet is different, so if you find one product not working for them, switch to another.  Remember when choosing a product, the more parasites it controls, the less likely it is to kill the individual parasite.  So, if you want to control only fleas, but have a product that kills a bunch of other stuff like mites, ticks etc, it may be less effective against the fleas.  If you need a product for heart worm also, I recommend doing a separate heart worm treatment.

Here is a quick breakdown for how they work.

Name                                   Applicaton                   Kills/Prevents

Advantage                           Topical                          Fleas

Advantix                               Topical                          Fleas, Ticks, Mosquitoes

Advantage Multi                 Topical                          Fleas,   Heart worm Prevention,

Internal Parasites

Frontline                              Topical                          Fleas

Revolution                           Topical                          Fleas, heart worm, ear mites

and some skin mites

Comfortis                             Pill                                  Fleas

Remember killing the fleas on your pet will only go so far.  If you don’t treat your environment, your pets will continue to get bit by the fleas.  You will need to vacuum your house multiple times a day and wash all the bedding your pet uses.  You may require a chemical treatment for your yard or home.

Any questions, email me at

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Come Fido Come…no really I mean Come!

Posted on June 21, 2009. Filed under: 3. Trainer On Call | Tags: , |

faithmotionHow many times have you seen it, an owner is calling their dog, chasing it through the park, and the dog thinks they are playing chase and just running away from their owner faster.   By chasing your pet trying to get it to come to you, you are actually reinforcing them running away from you.

First you need to establish control points at home.  Work on having the pet sit and stay, then come when called.  Next call them when they are occupied doing something, and not focusing on you.  Make sure you always reinforce them coming with treats and lots of love.  Once you are comfortable with them coming around your house and yard, take them to a park that is fenced in.  Let your pet play and every now and then tell them to come.  When they do, again reinforce them for it.

Once you are comfortable with the fenced in park, you can begin taking your pet to beaches, and unfenced parks.  Don’t move onto the unfenced areas until you are positive your pet will come when called.  Especially when there are distractions and other pets around. Continue with the same reinforcement when they come when called.

Establishing a positive reinforcement history in a controlled environment and carrying it over to a less controlled environment gradually, should help your pet maintain control.  The key is to make the switch gradually.

For any questions or comments, please contact me at

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How to Find a Lost Cat

Posted on June 16, 2009. Filed under: 1. Daily Life | Tags: , , , |

The North County Humane Society & SPCA (NCHS) sent out the information below on how to find your lost cat and how to prevent your cat from running away in the first place. Being a cat owner, I find these tips very helpful!

Less than four percent of cats that end up at NCHS are reclaimed by their owners.

There is much more to finding a lost cat than posting flyers.  Research, leg work and assessing a cat’s temperament can be a key to locating their whereabouts.  “We believe if more people took some easy steps, fewer cats would be taken into our shelter and more cats would be reunited with their owners,” states Executive Director of NCHS Julie Bank.

What to do if your cat becomes lost:

  • Look all over your property (inside and out), as well as your neighbor’s property.  Remember to look at night and during the day.
  • Place scented items (treats, clothing, etc.) around your property and carry them with you while looking.
  • Visit your local animal shelter and others in the surrounding areas daily or weekly. California law states that animal shelters must shelter a lost cat for five days, then the shelter is able to place the animal up for adoption.
  • Contact feline rescue groups.
  • Post large colorful flyers at least one mile around your home and at local vet offices.
  • Place an ad on lost and found Web sites or in the local newspapers.
  • Think like your cat.  Cats have different temperaments and will behave differently. Outdoor cats tend to stay in their territory.  When an outdoor cat disappears, something has happened him.  The cat could be injured, trapped or deceased.  Possibly transported out of the area intentionally, or not.  When an indoor cat gets out of his home, they will look for the first place that offers protection.
  • Don’t give up!  Cats have been located months after their disappearance.

The NCHS wants all cat owners to be cognizant of not getting themselves into this situation. The following tips are important to keep cats safe:

  • Spay and neuter: Animals that are altered are less likely to roam.
  • Transport cat in carrier: Cats are often spooked and even the best behaved cat can get scared and run.
  • Microchipping: Shelters scan for microchips, so even if you cat has been missing for awhile, you can be reached but make sure to keep your information up to date.  NCHS offers a low cost microchip for your pet.
  • Tags: Be sure to get an identification tag for your cat with your name, address and phone number.
  • Indoor Cats: Cats kept indoors are less likely to disappear and live years longer than outdoor cats.
  • Prepare: Keep a file with good photos of the face and body of your cat with a description.
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Bloat, It’s no Joke!

Posted on June 14, 2009. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: |

If you have a large breed pet that is deep chested, bloat is something you should be aware of.  Bloat is when the stomach accumulates an excess of air, foam or fluid.  Boat can also occur with a twisting of the stomach, which can trap the excess fluid etc. inside and cut off the circulation to the stomach.  Stress, eating or drinking too fast or excessive exercise after eating can contribute to bloat.  If your pet has bloat, their stomach will be distended and often hard. It is extremely important to get your pet to your veterinarian immediately.  Timing is crucial!  Prevention is the key to dealing with bloat.  Make sure your large breed pet doesn’t exercise heavily after eating. Stress can also be a factor, so feed your pet in a calm environment.  Feed multiple meals per day instead of one large meal and try raising the dog bowls off the ground to minimize the amount of air being swallowed.

Any questions contact me at

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Moose’s Underwater Treadmill video clips

Posted on June 11, 2009. Filed under: 3. Trainer On Call |

I added the video clips of Moose on his first day of underwater treadmill physical therapy.  He is still doing great and continues to grow stronger.


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We’re Engaged!

Posted on June 9, 2009. Filed under: 3. Trainer On Call |


Moose was Dylan’s right hand man in our engagement on Friday night.  He did a great job, and will be our ring bearer once we get the plans ironed out.

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I’m so excited I can’t stop peeing…

Posted on June 9, 2009. Filed under: Uncategorized |

101_1912If you have a pet that gets so excited when you get home, they piddle everywhere, here are a few tips that might help you.

First, make sure your pet has plenty of opportunities to go potty outside.  If it is at all possible, try greeting your dog outside, this will just help in keeping your floors and carpets clean.  The biggest pointer is to stay as calm and neutral with your excitement as possible.  If you walk in the house, ignore the pet.  The more excited you are, the more they are going to pee.  Walk quitely (still ignoring them) to let them outside to go potty. Once they are outside and have gone potty, then you can calmly greet them, get down on their level and give them calm love.  Over time, if you are consistent and calm, they should outgrow the behavior.  You can also increase your excitement over time to become more animated, but I would stick to calm greetings until you have been successful over at least a period of a few months.

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Doggie Deworming – It’s all in the Poo

Posted on June 1, 2009. Filed under: 3. Trainer On Call | Tags: , |

Most pet parents think dewormings are only necessary when they have puppies or kittens, but it is important to have your pet checked for worms once a year.  This can be done very easily and is inexpensive.  Although it may not sound like fun, collect a fresh sample of poop from your pet and take it to your local veterinarian.  If you can’t take it right away, you have a couple hour window if the sample stays refrigerated.  Yep that’s right, put it in the fridge.  Of course I recommend sealing it well first.  Your veterinarian can run a float of the sample and look for parasites like round worms, hook worms, tape worms and coccidia.  If you ever notice your pet has a bout of diarrhea, often times your veterinarian will recommend a dewormer to cover all the bases.  Remember, a lot of parasites your pet can get are not seen with the naked eye.
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