It’s getting easier to incorporate good sustainability practices into our lives as consumers. More and more of us are recycling waste, buying products in eco-friendly packaging, and bringing our own reusable bags to the grocery store. Pets can be eco-conscious too, thanks to innovative practices in the pet products industry. The organization Pet Sustainability Coalition seeks to implement environmental and social sustainability in the pet industry. Here’s a list of things you can look for when you go shopping for pet food and other products, courtesy of the PSC website:
Pet food and treats with natural, minimally processed ingredients, made with sustainable manufacturing processes and eco-friendly packaging.
Pet hygiene and bath products made with healthy, natural ingredients, also manufactured and packaged in sustainable ways.
Environmentally-friendly and (of course) pet-friendly household cleaning products and pest control products.
Pet product brands that use locally-sourced ingredients to minimize the negative impact of long-distance transportation of materials.
Cat litter box filler that is all-natural and biodegradable in landfills.
Pet bedding made from upcycled textiles, both the covering and the filler materials.
Bowls, toys, litter boxes, and leashes made from post-consumer recycled materials, such as recycled inner tube rubber.
Bird and small animal products made from recycled, fair-trade, and organic materials.
You probably remember the viral video from a while back of a young boy who would jump off his bike and run into his neighbor’s garage to give their dog a big hug. The video charmed everyone who saw it, and now there’s a heartwarming update to the story. This adorable animal lover now has his own dog to love!
9 year-old Josh Breaux of Louisiana began to visit his neighbor’s pup not long after the family dog he had since he was 2 passed away. Josh’s mom explained that they were hesitating to get another dog right away, and Josh was definitely missing his canine cuddle buddy. (His mom reports that she and Josh’s sister were dog huggers too!)
After the video went viral, the family was contacted by many people looking to give Josh a dog. As this story from ABC News shows, Josh finally got his very own puppy! A 3 month-old black lab named Drake became Josh’s new canine sibling. Drake came from a family in the neighborhood whose son just went away to college…so, a very happy ending for both Josh and Drake!
Have you heard about the “Remember Me Thursday” pet adoption awareness movement? Thursday, September 22, 2016 has been designated as Remember Me Thursday. This event was founded four years ago by Mike Arms, President and CEO of the Helen Woodward Animal Center, right here in San Diego County!
The aim of the movement is simple—to raise awareness about the millions of adoptable pets in the world who are waiting for their forever homes. In past years over 160 countries and 500 animal welfare organizations have united in support of this awareness event.
You can be a part of Remember Me Thursday, too! Just spread the word on your social media accounts using the hashtags #RememberTheRescue and #RememberMeThursday. Share your rescue pet’s story and pictures with animal lovers just like you!
It’s rare for a pet owner to go through life without experiencing at least one serious veterinary emergency. Recognize this scenario? It’s midnight on Saturday and your dog or cat seems sick or hurt. Your vet’s office will be closed until Monday morning. Do you wait it out or take your pet to a 24-hour emergency veterinary hospital? The answer depends on the particular symptoms your pet is experiencing.
The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) has lots of great information for pet owners on their website, including what to do in an emergency. While it’s never wrong to call the vet if you have a concern, how do you determine if it’s time to go to the hospital? Here are a few of the most common scenarios that the AAHA classifies as definite emergencies that require immediate care:
Physical trauma such as being hit by a car or falling several feet.
No detectable breathing or heartbeat.
Vomiting and/or diarrhea for 24 hours, especially if you’re seeing blood.
Suspected broken bones.
Breathing difficulties and/or an object is stuck in the throat.
Bleeding from the eyes, nose or mouth (and blood in urine or feces).
Suspected ingestion of a toxic food, drug, or household item like antifreeze.
Your male cat is making frequent trips to the litter box but cannot urinate.
Whining, shaking, hiding or other signs of pain.
Your pet collapses and is unable to get up again.
Bumping into things and/or disorientation.
Eye injury, as well as behavior indicating that your pet cannot see.
A hard, swollen abdomen and attempts to vomit.
Signs of heatstroke.
Pregnancy and delivery problems, such as a gap of 3-4 hours between birth of a puppy or kitten.
The AAHA recommends getting your pet to the vet ASAP in these situations. If your regular vet doesn’t provide emergency services or contact information, then locate an emergency facility near you. It’s always good to know of one or two 24-hour hospitals in your area before a crisis situation occurs so you are prepared.
If there was ever a dog who embodied the essence of a true hero, it’s Hooch, a rescue dog whose spirit and resilience earned him American Humane’s 2016 Hero Dog Award. Hooch is a French Mastiff who ended up at a shelter in Bakersfield, California. He came to the attention of Zach Skow of Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue in Tehachapi, California because the shelter was concerned that he would not eat or drink.
Hooch had severely cropped ears and a broken tail. He was very malnourished and dehydrated. Rescuers suspected that he might have an injured jaw, causing him to be unable to eat or drink out of bowls. While sedating him for X-rays, they made a shocking discovery. Hooch’s tongue had been totally removed. This led rescuers to suspect that he had been used as a bait dog for dogfighting.
Hooch would not accept a feeding tube, but luckily, he likes being hand-fed! Hooch tips his head back and lets Zach place food at the back of his throat, and he’s able to swallow it. Hooch’s bravery is a true inspiration, and he now spends his time with the Miracle Mutts division of Marley’s Mutts. He works as a therapy dog for abused, autistic, and other special-needs children. He is kind and patient with the kids and serves as a reminder that even a tremendous amount of adversity can be bravely overcome.
Congratulations to Hooch and all of the other pups nominated for the Hero Dog Awards!