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Puppy Proof | Home | Health | Tips | The Daily Fluff
Wellbeing

10 Ways to Puppy Proof Your Home

posted by The Daily Fluff November 11, 2016 0 comments

There pretty much isn’t anything more exciting than bringing your new puppy home for the first time! Unfortunately, though, it’s not all fun and games! Just like mum and dad used to tell us as we’d beg and beg for a new puppy, with pets comes responsibility.

Here are our top ten tips to puppy-proof your home.

  1. Get rid of toxic items

Lock up all of your toxic chemicals, far away from your pup. New puppies can be super curious, and if they really want to, they can wriggle into dangerous places. Lock your chemicals and cleaning products in a place they can’t get access to. Pups can also react badly to some plants you might have in your backyard. Read more about toxic plants to look out for here!

George The French Bulldog agrees:

“I love to play in the backyard, so it’s important that anything that I might try to eat (like small rocks or the hose) is out of my reach and that any plants or garden items used are pet friendly.”

  1. Keep all doors shut and secured

Trust us, there is nothing scarier than when your new pup seizes their opportunity and goes straight for the front door. It might be a bit of an adjustment, especially if you haven’t had a dog before but it is definitely worth being super careful around any doors that are used to access the big bad world.

  1. Puppy-proof your fence 

Dogs LOVE to dig and to squirm into places they shouldn’t be, so make sure to thoroughly check your backyard. Check for any holes in your fencing, or any gaps a wriggly little pup could squeeze through!

  1. Use lots of towels while toilet training

If you’ve had a puppy before, then you know that toilet training can be a seriously long process! To avoid any lounge room disasters, cover all carpeted areas with old towels. Using absorbent puppy-pads will also help you avoid messy clean-ups!

  1. Tidy up electric cables

New puppies LOVE to chew, especially while they are teething! Clean up all electric cables, and keep them well away from your pups favourite hangout zone. Honestly, better they chew on your favourite shoes than the wifi cable, right?

             6. Identify any hazards

Puppies and stairs do not mix. Block off the stairs with a child proof gate to keep them safe!

  1. Clean up

Puppies can be seriously curious creatures. Within minutes of arriving at their new home, they will be sniffing around to familiarise themselves with their new family! This means that any socks left on the floor, dust bunnies under the couch or food left under the oven can become a puppy hazard. Have a big clean out a few days before your pup arrives home, just to be safe!

  1. Keep food out of reach

Not only is human food super appetising for our fur-babies, it can also be quite damaging and even toxic. If your new pup is particularly curious, it might be best to buy some child locks for your pantry and fridge doors. Keep all food out of their reach until they learn their boundaries.

  1. Store away important belongings

Like we said, new puppies are extremely curious and have an affinity for chewing. Lock up all of your valuables!!

  1. Create a puppy-only area

If your puppy has its own area where it can sleep, eat and play safely, then they are less likely to get into trouble around the rest of the house. Creating a space that they enjoy spending time in is the best way to keep your new pup safe in your home.

As you are applying all these top tips and tricks for puppy proofing your home, it’s important to make sure that you reward your puppy for the amazing job they are doing! Frankie The Lil Sausage thinks this is very important as well!

“Give your new puppy lots of praise when they do the right thing. I always love hearing what a good girl I am!”

Springtime | Health | Tips | Looking After Pets | Warm Weather | Melbourne Pet Blog | The Daily Fluff
Health

5 Tips for Looking After Your Pet’s Health in Spring

posted by The Daily Fluff October 18, 2016 0 comments

Spring is FINALLY starting to come around in Melbourne (hallelujah), which means longer days, blue skies and days spent in the sun. While spring is pretty much all fun and games for us humans, unfortunately it isn’t all sunshine and butterflies for our pets.

Here are five tips to make sure your pets are as happy as can be this season!

Looking fresh:

While we may be starting to put away our winter jackets, our furry friends may start losing theirs. If you’ve got a dog with fur (as opposed to hair) or a longhaired cat, you might notice that they start to shed more.

To help move along the process, grab a firm brush or comb and make sure to brush them daily. This will help cool down your pet and will probably lessen vacuuming time! If your pup is hypoallergenic, take them to the groomers for a quick trim!

Keeping cool:

Make sure you’re leaving out plenty of water for your pets to drink as the temperature starts to increase, and change it frequently. It’s super important to make sure that they’re hydrated! If your pet will tolerate it, try and give them baths on warm days to keep their body temperature down.

Our friend Freddie Mercury always tries to stay cool in the warm spring heat:

“Spring has sprung! And for a big fluffy cat like me, that means I have to start thinking about keeping cool. I highly recommend popping a few ice cubes in your water dish for a refreshingly cool drink”

Stay away from baddies:

If you’ve got a green thumb, then you’d know that the backyard could be a bit of a scary place for pets in springtime. Here are a few things to watch out for in your backyard or local parks.

  • Snail bate/poisons: Anything you might use to get rid of unwanted pests, or weeds can be seriously toxic to our pets! If you are using any sort of pesticide, make sure it is in an area that is closed off to your fur-babies.
  • Bee stings: Unfortunately, bees and wasps don’t discriminate and our pets are just as likely to get stung as we are! If you notice any hives developing in your area, be sure to keep an eye out on your pet as they play outside.
  • Poisonous plants: Those gorgeous lilies or birds of paradise sprouting in your yard under the spring sun may actually be a bit of a danger for your pets!

Dogs in particular can have quite a bad reaction to aloe, apricot trees and buttercups.

Cats should stay away from carnations, chives and daisies. Both cats and dogs can also be highly allergic to lilies!

Here is a full list of plants that may be toxic to our pets: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants.

Time to visit the vet:

We can practically see your dog or cat rolling their eyes at us from here. Yep, that’s right its time to visit the vet! Spring is a great time to check that your pet is up to date with all of their vaccinations and medication including heartworm tablets. We all know that warmer weather means that it’s mosquito season, and these little pesky bugs actually can spread heartworm so it’s vital that your pet is properly protected.

Fleas also flourish in the warmer weather; so make sure you’re on top of your flea treatments!

Kick back and relax:

We know it can be super tempting to get out of the house as soon as the sun starts shining, but be careful that you aren’t over-doing it. If your pets aren’t used to lots of exercise, especially after our long winter, make sure you ease into it.

Frankie Sunny knows how important it is to stay cool, calm and collected:

“When the sun comes out in spring it’s pawesome and we feel like we could spend the whole day running around outside. Just be careful that your pets don’t overdo it and of course, always have fresh, cold water available.”

Like Frankie said, if you are planning on spending the day out with your pup, make sure you bring along a water bowl, and plan to spend some time relaxing in the shade to keep them cool.

Pets | Workplace | Benefits of Pets | Office | Melbourne Pet Blog | The Daily Fluff
Wellbeing

Benefits Of Pets In The Workplace

posted by The Daily Fluff October 10, 2016 0 comments

For most of us, the best thing about arriving home after work each day is being greeted by our furry friends. Playing catch or having some quality cuddle time is the best way to relax and de-stress after a long day at work.

However now you don’t have to spend your day wondering what mischief your pet is getting up to at home, or waiting for the clock to hit five so you can go home and spoil them with belly rubs anymore! Studies have shown that having pets in the workplace can actually be extremely beneficial!

Unconvinced? Here are the top benefits of having pets in the workplace:

Reduces stress and anxiety:

Anxiety is common in most workplaces. Even if you love your job, deadlines, meetings and time management can get to even the most zen of us!

Studies have shown that pet’s behaviour provokes laughter and entertainment, which is likely to reduce stress and feelings of depression. This is especially relieving in high-pressure corporate workplaces! Having something to alleviate feelings of stress and anxiety is guaranteed to create a more productive and effective workplace.

Encourages physical activity:

Being stuck in the office, sitting down, sending emails all day definitely is not great for your health and wellbeing, that’s for sure. Even on the most beautiful summers days, we can feel obliged to stay inside while we’re at work.

Having pets in the office gives you the greatest excuse to get out and enjoy that sunshine! Leaving the office for even 15 minutes to walk the dog can be a great refresher and it can improve employee’s focus. Win/win!

Increases productivity:

Being happier, healthier, and less stressed at work can make a more productive team. Reduced stress in the workplace means that employees are less likely to take sick days and are more likely to enjoy their time at work.

Workplaces that are pet friendly have found that as office-pets create a more relaxed environment, they also boost creativity. Meaning that employees are more likely to be imaginative and productive.

If you’re seeking a bit more balance in your corporate life, we would definitely recommend asking your boss about introducing pet-friendly office days! Even if it’s just one day a week – like our friends at Jetpets, who have introduced Furbaby Friday at their workplace.

 I mean, who can resist a puppies’ face anyway?!

Yoga | Doga | Exercise | How To Exercise With Pets | The Daily Fluff | Melbourne Pet Blog
Wellbeing

Yoga For Dogs

posted by The Daily Fluff September 22, 2016 0 comments

We all know what yoga is right? Thank the internet and the crazy pretzel­ shaped selfies of men and women world over for educating anyone who might not have heard of this ancient practice about how they can heal their bodies and lives through this mental and physical meditation.

Of course, these days yoga itself comes in a few different varieties, some perform it in classes in the centre of busy gyms, some prefer to stretch outdoors alone, some (like yours truly) meditate via the aid of a Youtube video yogi in their dressing gowns and pajama’s before hopping on the tram to work, and – some people now take their dogs along to yoga with them!

Yoga | Doga | Exercise | How To Exercise With Pets | The Daily Fluff | Melbourne Pet BlogIt’s called Doga, and as it increases in popularity, fans are raving about it!

Of course, a four ­legged pooch can’t exactly stretch themselves out into a warrior, or butterfly pose. So, what exactly is Doga?

As it turns out, Doga is primarily a social experience for dogs and owners to bond. While there are some dog ­friendly poses, the main characteristic of Doga tends to be in creating a closer and more trusting relationship between dog and human. Many classes ask humans to stroke and massage their dogs, breathe with them and sometimes perform some light stretching. Other classes simply involve the dogs being there, present alongside other dogs and humans in a calm, friendly setting.

The idea makes sense, as many humans are already aware of the de-­stressing effects of having a pet or other friendly animal around. Dogs tend to detoxify any situation, and therefore are the perfect companion to bring along to a yoga class, provided they are not too over-excited and energetic!

How to do Doga/Get Your Dog Involved:

U.S Doga teacher Brenda Bryan has invented a few techniques for getting dogs involved and encouraging pet/owner bonding time. Most of Bryan’s techniques simply involve increasing the closeness between pets and owners and creating a more comfortable setting for the dogs. To get started with Doga you could try her Heart-­To-Hound Mudra, a meditation that connects you to your dog by placing one hand on your own heart and one hand on your dogs, then closing your eyes and breathing slowly.

All in all, Doga looks like a great way to have some fun and relax with your pooch. Why not try it out at home, or even email your local yogi to see if you could bring a little canine love to your after‐work yoga class!

Health

Health Warning – Ticks

posted by The Daily Fluff September 15, 2016 0 comments

Pet owners are urged to keep an eye out for a potentially deadly tick which has found its way to Melbourne.

Find out more in the following clip by 7 News.

We spoke with Dr Andrea from Reservoir Vet Clinic to get her expert advice on the outbreak.

How can pet owners avoid their pet coming into contact with the Eastern Paralysis Tick?
Recent studies are showing that the Eastern Paralysis Tick is in metropolitan Melbourne- so using proven tick treatments such as Bravecto on dogs and Seresto on cats is going to help prevent tick paralysis – always follow the manufacturers instructions.
What are the symptoms of a tick bite that pet owners should look out for?
Unfortunately symptoms can vary a lot and can include, staggering, change of voice, vomiting, not able to eat properly, difficulty breathing,  difficulty walking or not wanting to walk.
If an owner suspects their pet has been bitten by a tick, what should they do?
It’s important to seek veterinary assistance immediately as paralysis tick is life threatening.
Dogs | Exercise | Fitness | How To Exercise With Your Dog | The Daily Fluff | Melbourne Pet Blog
Fun

4 Ways To Exercise With Your Dog ­

posted by The Daily Fluff September 8, 2016 0 comments

Even with today’s busy lifestyle­ it’s important for pets and owners alike to keep fit so they can tackle all their important daily tasks (like testing out those new chew toys dad brought home!) with a clear mind.

Here at the Daily Fluff we’ve compiled four ways to exercise with your dog this spring, that will clear that winter fog away and get you both outside, soaking up some healthy Vitamin D.

1. Walking or running:

Walking or running with your dog is one of the most common ways to get fit while bonding together.

Instagram celebs Sherman and Diesel are big fans of a good beach ­run, they love how it wears their owner out so they can relax afterwards:

“Hearing the word W.A.L.K is our favourite part of the day. We like to exercise our human at the local off-leash beach, Beaumaris Yacht Club. Look out for Diesel chasing his favourite purple ball and I will be rolling around in some seaweed. remember regular exercise is great for your humans and helps keep us happy and healthy too.”

2. Keepings off:

Dogs love ball sports. Head to the backyard or local park with a soccer ball and play keepings off! Gentle dribbling activities will work out both you and your dog, while you try to keep the ball away and your dog tries to catch it. This is also a good way for you to check in with your old sports skills and see if you’ve still got it!

3. Stand­-Up Paddle Boarding:

If you’ve always wanted to try paddle ­boarding but haven’t the heart to leave your pooch at home while you get to splash around in the ocean, there’s no need to worry! Dogs love water, waves and the ocean in general. Any pup that loves the feel of the wind in their face during the drive down to the beach will equally enjoy the sea­ spray as they get to ride the waves like Kate Winslet in the Titanic.

4. Bodysurfing:

As the weather warms up, the beaches fill up. Bodysurfing is a fun way to get fit and no equipment is necessary! Your dog can join in too and catch waves with you. Careful though, your pooch might show you up on the beach, either by riding those waves more smoothly, or attracting the attention of cute lifeguards!

Do you have any fun tips on how to exercise with your pet? Let us know in the comments below!

Feeding Schedule | How To Feed Pets | Puppies Feeding | Health | Pet Health | Melbourne Pet Blog | The Daily Fluff
Health

How To Create A Feeding Schedule For Your Pets

posted by The Daily Fluff September 1, 2016 0 comments

When you bring your adorable new pet home for the first time, it’s natural to just want to cuddle and play for weeks on end. But it’s important to remember that those first few weeks are an important time to lay some groundwork in obedience training and routine. Just like humans, our furry pals need routines too. Routines, especially regarding food, give your pets a level of comfort and security. By reassuring pets so that they know they will get fed, and that it will occur at a certain time, this will help them to avoid developing anxiety and antisocial behaviours.

Feeding schedules for pets are extremely important and can have positive or adverse psychological effects on your pet. Food can play a role in training, health monitoring ­(i.e. noticing if a pet is ill due to seeing them skip a meal,) the metabolization of medication, and even your pet’s emotional states and social natures. A feeding schedule that is well adapted to your pet’s individual needs can even aid in the reduction of separation anxiety and related behaviours.

There are several methods of feeding that can be adopted. Some of these methods are also translatable to most pets, including cats and dogs!

Free Feeding:

For those of us who work long hours and understand our canine and feline friends constant desire for disposable food sources all day long, we can leave dry food (wet spoils faster) in a bowl ready for our pet’s consumption.

When using this method with cats, free feeding is best restricted to single cat homes, or larger cat homes where food bowls can be spread out, as some dominant cats may hoard food or push less dominant felines out at meal times. If your pet is a guts and eats its way through the whole bowl at once, you could try using mechanical feeding bowls that let out certain portions of food at certain times.

Controlled Feeding:

Controlled feeding is best suited to owners who know they will always be home for their pet’s during meal times. Controlled feeding can work in two ways: Timed or portioned. For time ­controlled feeding you may place food into a bowl and allow 10-­20 minutes before taking the bowl away, preventing your cat from overeating as some breeds are known to do with the free-feeding method. If you choose to use portion control, you can simply place a certain portion of food into your pet’s bowl and allow them to eat at their own pace. Cats and dogs on medications or diets will need to be fed in a controlled manner.

Different pets, of different species, breeds and ages require different feeding schedules. A young puppy needs to be fed three times a day, much more than an adult dog which can be fed one or two times per day. Puppy meal times can be modelled after your own, i.e. morning, noon and early evening.

To avoid puppies being overfed some basic obedience training during will be required during meal times: If your dog is trained to sit and stay, order your dog to do so while you fill their bowl and then release once the bowl is filled and your hand has been taken away. You can also use meal times to reinforce behavioural training, as well as a time to bond with your pet.

You can find more information about how to create obedient behaviour patterns at mealtimes here.

It’s always worth speaking to your Vet regarding the age and breed of your pet to get a second opinion on the best feeding method. Remember that controlled feeding can act as a way to bond with your pet, as you can play with them before and after meals. Free feeding can interfere with food motivation and thus obedience training. Always be sure to check with your Veterinarian regarding meal schedules, sizes, and training.

Obedience Training | Puppies | Train Your Dogs | Melbourne Pet Blog | The Daily Fluff
Wellbeing

The Benefits of Obedience Training

posted by The Daily Fluff August 30, 2016 0 comments

Although they may be irrefutably cute, puppies can be boisterous, excitable and mischievous at the best of times. It may seem like a bit of a hassle, but obedience training is beneficial for both you and your pup and can also be super fun!

Unsure whether to try obedience training? Here are the benefits:

Establishing authority:

Although many of us like to treat our dogs as if they were our own babies (yep, guilty), establishing authority is one of the most important things you can teach your dog. For new puppies especially, it’s important for them to know who is boss. Using obedience training to remind your pup that you’re in charge will help you in all interactions with them, as well as in interactions with other dogs.

Obedience:

Well this one might be obvious, but training your dog to understand simple commands is one of the great benefits of obedience training! Whether it’s sit, lie down, or shake, these commands will help you communicate efficiently with your dog. Once you’ve mastered the basics, you can move onto manoeuvres like roll over and play dead, which I mean can be seriously impressive party tricks.

Socialisation:

All dogs have different personalities and like some of us (3pm on a Monday afternoon, anyone?) have difficulty socialising. Taking your dog to training classes can be a great way for them to learn how to interact with other dogs.

Socialising with other dogs was Hamish the Chow’s favourite part about obedience training:

“I wasn’t the best student in puppy school, some may even have called me a terror. It did teach me socialisation though. Chow Chows have a reputation for being slightly unfriendly, so it was important I learnt how to behave around other dogs and humans, as with any young pup.”

Although it is generally filled with love and cuddles, being a dog owner can be hard and even sometimes stressful. Obedience training can help you as an owner to manage your dog’s behaviour and identify good behaviour, which in the end will make for a happy owner, and an even happier pup!

Whether you choose to attend training classes, or train your puppy at home, obedience training will equip your dog with new skills and keep them on their toes. And remember, you can always teach an old dog, new tricks!

Rabbits | The Daily Fluff | Looking After Rabbits | Melbourne Pet Blog | The Daily Fluff
Wellbeing

Top Tips For Looking After Rabbits

posted by The Daily Fluff August 19, 2016 0 comments

Rabbits make adorable pets. They are ideal indoor pets and are great for families, couples and everyone in-between. However just like all pets, they have specific dietary, housing, exercise and health care requirements to ensure they are as happy and healthy as they possibility can be.

Read on below for some great tips for looking after rabbits:

Diet:

A healthy rabbit’s diet consists of roughly 80% fresh hay and 20% fresh leafy green vegetables. The best hay for rabbits to eat include: pasture, paddock, wheaten or oaten. The best leafy greens include: cos and rocket lettuce, celery, carrot tops, spinach, basil parsley and mint.

You should avoid feeding your rabbit the following leafy foods as they can be harmful and make your rabbit ill:

  • iceberg lettuce
  • cabbage
  • rhubarb
  • potato peelings
  • raw beans
  • corn
  • grains
  • nuts
  • seeds

Always research any food or check with your veterinarian before introducing any new foods to your rabbit’s diet.

Housing/Bedding:

Rabbits require an escape-proof enclosure with sturdy (not wire!) flooring and an enclosed space or shelter to hide in. They like to arrange their own beds, so it is important you provide the right materials for them to arrange. Hay, straw and hardwood shavings are best.

Materials that are not suitable for rabbit bedding include pine and cedar shavings, ­as these woods contain chemicals that can harm your rabbit or reduce their lifespan.

Exercise/Enrichment:

While rabbits are social creatures and enjoy human interaction, it is important to be careful when handling your rabbit. A few things to remember include:

  • Don’t pick them up too much, as rabbits have delicate spines
  • Be mindful of children handling rabbits
  • Always let your rabbit make the first move, coming to the human first!

Rabbits love to play coy. Wooden logs and hiding tunnels for them to play in are a great source of enrichment. They also enjoy food toys. You can play with your rabbit by rolling it food toys as a source of both exercise and social interaction.

Vet Care:

Rabbits are notoriously secretive about their health. It is extremely important to always keep an eye on your rabbit’s health as visible signs of disease may mean it is too late. One of the major diseases rabbits are susceptible to is called Calcivirus. Calcivirus is transmitted through the bodily secretions of infected rabbits. It can also be transmitted through fleas and mosquitos. It’s important to be wary of your rabbit’s outdoor and intersocial interactions. Calcivirus can be fatal, so watch out for the following warning signs:

  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Shivering
  • Not eating
  • Respiratory difficulties

Last but not least:

Rabbits prefer to live with other rabbits! They are naturally social creatures and rabbit loneliness can be an issue. A pair of two rabbits is ideal for owners who can care for two. Rabbits should also be checked on twice a day, and like all other pets need lots of time and attention.

Pet Health | Common Pet Allergies | Pets | The Daily Fluff | Melbourne Pet Blog
Health

Common Pet Allergies

posted by The Daily Fluff August 12, 2016 0 comments

It’s that time of the year. The temperature starts to rise, the sun comes out again and all of a sudden the hay fever kicks in. Believe it or not, our furry friends can be just as sensitive to seasonal changes, food products and skin care products as we are. So as a pet owner, it’s important to know what to look for if you think your pet may be experiencing allergies.

Common Symptoms:

Cats and dogs generally show similar allergy symptoms to their mums and dads, so if your pet is acting a bit out of the norm then this may be the result of allergies.

Here are a few signs to look for if you think your pet may be experiencing allergies:

  • Itchy or red skin
  • Runny eyes
  • Itchy ears
  • Paw chewing
  • Sneezing
  • Non-stop licking
  • Vomiting or diarrhea

Causes:

Both dogs and cats can be allergic to a number of things that they will come across in everyday life. One of the most common causes for allergies in pets is grass, seeds and weeds. If you have a larger backyard, make sure you keep an eye on your pet to make sure that they aren’t having a reaction to anything they may have been sniffing around.

If your fur-child has been experiencing digestive issues, this could be a sign of potential food allergies. Yep, that’s right, your pet can be just as sensitive to different foods as us! Food allergies can be difficult to spot and an elimination diet may be the only way to pin point exactly what has been causing an upset stomach. If you think your pup or kitty may be experiencing food allergies, make sure you consult with your vet first before making any changes to your pet’s diet.

Cats and dogs can also be allergic to some medications, which can sometimes be a bit scary! Whether it’s flea or worming medication or even antibiotics, some sensitive pets may have a reaction. If you think this may be happening to your pet, make sure you consult a vet as soon as possible.

Solutions:

Consult your vet for solutions to food and medication related allergies. Medicating your pet from home could potentially cause more harm than good!

If your pet is experiencing allergic reactions to dust, grass and weeds there are a few easy steps you can take to make life more comfortable for them.

If they’re experiencing skin irritation, both cats and dogs can benefit from weekly baths using oatmeal shampoos and conditioners. Washing bedding and clothing weekly can also help reduce dust-based allergies. Cats may benefit from using unscented litter as well!

It’s important to remember that no matter the breed, any cat or dog may be susceptible to developing allergies at some point in their life. Make sure you consult your vet to work out the best allergy action plan for your furry friend.

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