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Top Five Summer Foods Dangerous to Pets

Wednesday, July 27, 2011 Comments

AVOCADOS

Photo credit: LA Times blog
You may think Spot loves yummy summer guacamole as much as you do but in fact avocados are toxic to dogs. According to the ASPCA’s website, all parts of the avocado, including the pit and skin, contain a substance called Persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs.

ONIONS
Photo credit: HowStuffWorks
Picture this: you’re grilling up some kebabs out back when a piece of grilled onion falls to the ground. Do you let Rover eat it? According to WebMD, you shouldn’t. Onions and garlic in all forms can destroy your pet’s red blood cells, leading to anemia. Symptoms include weakness, vomiting, little interest in food, dullness, and breathlessness. Cats are especially susceptible to the dangers posed by onions.


LEMONS AND LEMONADE

Photo credit: SheKnows
According to the ASPCA, lemons and limes are toxic to both dogs and cats. These fruits contain a substance called psoralens, which when combined with the acidity in lemons and limes, can make ingestion dangerous. Plus, the essential oil found in lemon peel can be toxic to cats when taken internally, applied to the skin, or simply inhaled.

GRAPES

Photo Credit: Rightlog
Although they are one of the most refreshing of summer’s fruits, grapes and raisins should be avoided when it comes to Fido. Although the specific toxin is unknown, grapes have been known to cause vomiting, lethargy, depression and eventually kidney failure, especially among older dogs and puppies.

ICE CREAM
Photo credit: EgoTV
In small quantities, your pup should be able to handle a few licks of your ice cream cone, but according to the ASPCA, because pets do not possess significant amounts of the enzyme that breaks down lactose, milk and other milk-based products cause them diarrhea or other digestive upset.

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SUMMER GIVEAWAY: Cesar Canine Cuisine care package!

Thursday, July 14, 2011 Comments

Peanut posing with hit Cesar loot
Cesar Canine Cuisine was nice enough to send Mad About Pets a care package of their products to try out, and also another package to give away to a lucky reader! Since there are no dogs in the Mad About Pets household, my sister-in-law's Maltipoo named Peanut (dog-in-law?) was the honorary Cesar tester. Since Cesar Canine Cuisine caters to small dogs, Peanut was the perfect test subject.

My SIL reports that Peanut really enjoyed the Sunrise meals which contain egg. He was so in love with them, he actually stole one of the meals, ran away, and opened it himself! What a brat. The Softies Medley treats were also a big hit, as they are easy to eat for small dogs with equally small mouths. Peanut didn't have any issues chewing them as he does with some of the larger, crunchier treats offered by other brands.

Peanut clearly enjoyed his time as a Mad About Pets test subject! :)

Want to win a Cesar Canine Cuisine care package for YOUR dog?

Mad About Pets is giving away 1 Cesar care package containing various Cesar moist foods, treats, and an adorable t-shirt to a lucky reader. Here's how to snag this great collection for your dog:
Cesar care package up for giveaway

To enter the giveaway:

All you need to do is leave a comment on this post telling me a little about the dog who would enjoy this care package. Make sure to leave me a way to contact you, whether it be Twitter, email, etc. so I can notify you if you win!

Want some extra entries? Here's how:

5 extra entries:

*Blog about this contest with a link to this post (leave me a comment with the link)

1 extra entry:

*Tweet a link to this giveaway @MadAboutPets
*Follow me on Twitter
*Join my Facebook fan page
*Subscribe to my feed
*Post a link to Mad About Pets on your blog or site

Please leave a separate comment for each additional entry to state you have completed the requirement. I highly suggest that you leave your email address (use "name [at] domain dot com" format to avoid spambots) in your comment(s) so that I am able to contact you ASAP if you're a winner. If I cannot contact the winner within 3 days, I will have to draw a new winner.

Entry deadline is July 27, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. Central Standard Time. This giveaway is open to United States residents only.


Good luck!

Interesting Dog Training Statistics

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 Comments

Dog Training Information
Created by Pet365 - an online stockist of dog beds, collars and accessories. Click here to view the full post.

Steve Hofstetter
Steve Hofstetter is a popular comedian, author, and columnist. You may recognize him from appearances on ESPN's Quite Frankly or the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, or his radio show National Lampoon's Sports Minute (Or So). His stand up comedy is a big draw on college campuses, infusing observational humor and political commentary. Steve is also a sports buff, and his columns can be found in Sports Illustrated, Maxim, and ESPN Magazine (just to name a few.) Despite his affinity for entertainment and comedy, Steve carried around a not-so-funny problem for many years-- he was afraid of dogs. That all changed when he met his wife Sara, who ironically was an animal shelter volunteer. With Sara's help, Steve is overcoming his fear of dogs one day at a time. Amazingly, the pair has recently welcomed a new addition to their family: a 6-year-old rescue Dachsund/Beagle mix. Steve and Sara christened their new dog "Bea Arthur", and Steve has begun to document his experiences as a dog owner and recovering cynophobe on his new blog Adopting Bea Arthur. Steve kindly agreed to do an interview with Mad About Pets to further discuss his fear of dogs, and how he's gotten to the point of owning his very own dog:

-Was there one specific incident which spurred your fear of dogs?

When I was a baby, a neighbor's dog tried to bite me. My parents say that I was sacred ever since then. While I have no memory of it, that sort of thing gets programmed in you.

-Did your fear of dogs have any social implications? In other words, did it negatively affect your social life or your daily interactions?

Sure - there were friends' houses I didn't want to go to, girls I had trouble dating, and the constant worry of looking like a weenie whenever we passed one.

-It is my understanding that your attitude towards dogs began to change after you met your wife, a shelter volunteer. How did she begin to change your perception of dogs?

She educated me. She showed me hours and hours of dog shows, introduced me to some of the more well behaved dogs at the shelter, and just taught me a lot about how owners mold their dogs, not the other way around.

The irresistible Bea Arthur
-Was there something special about Bea that made you and your wife decide to add a dog to the family, or had you made the decision before seeing her that you were in the market for a pet?

We were in the market for a dog, but the right dog. We had turned others down. But Bea was so well behaved and so cute, it was hard to say no. Okay, that's a lie - it was impossible.

-I have to ask…Bea Arthur? Is there a story behind this name, or are you just a huge Golden Girls fan?

We're fans of the show. We used to watch it every night before we went to sleep (til we'd pretty much seen them all). We wanted to name her after something comedy related because of what I do, but all my favorite legends are men. Suddenly, Sara suggested Bea Arthur, and it just fit. She's stoic and doesn't have time for silly bitches.

-How has adding Bea to the family changed your life (for better or worse)?

We're a lot more tired than we used to be (and about $1200 poorer already). But we feel like we're a family now - and I'm in the best shape I've been in in a while.

-Now that you have a dog of your own, is your fear completely under control or are there still some lingering hesitations?

Steve and Bea
I still pause a bit with some bigger dogs, especially with owners that don't look like they know what they're doing. There was a giant dog in the dog park once that I refer to as the junkyard dog. The owner didn't care what the dog was doing, and it had a big old chain on its neck - and was clearly starting with the other dogs. That type of dog, it'll be a while before I'm comfortable.

-For those readers of Mad About Pets who may have a fear of dogs, in your experience, how do you begin to overcome that fear?

Watch a great deal of Animal Planet. And just understand that not all dogs are the same - kind of like people that way, but they sleep more.

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