Holiday Travel Tips from The Honest Kitchen

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Tips for Holiday Pet Travel

November 7, 2013

The holidays are right around the corner, and that means many of you will be packing up your pets to head over the river and through the woods. More people than ever are reportedly planning pet friendly vacations, and that means a little extra planning to make sure your trip gets off on the right paw. Here are a few tips to make sure your next adventure is a success.

Dog in Car

Read more here!

At J&M Aquatics we carry:

soft side crates from Hagen, wire cages from Petmate –  both single door & double door – all sizes on all crates & all are collapsible & easy to store! The Hagen soft side crates even come with their own carrying case.
We also have: seat covers, harnesses that hook to your seat belts, travel bowls, & mats for the back of the car/

suv. Stop in today and let us help you plan the perfect holiday trip with your pet!

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Preparing for a puppy

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With the holidays approaching we’re sure some of you are planning to end the season with a new puppy.  Puppies are so much fun to have around, but they also require much work and training.  Paying attention to the needs of your puppy will ensure a happy and healthy pet and pet-human relationship for you and your family.

Grand Junction puppy

According to PetAge.com:

Puppy Foods

Puppies need smaller kibble pieces to help with chewing since their teeth are much smaller than adult dogs.

We stock the Nutro brand which offers three different types of food specifically designed for puppies. The Wholesome Essentials Puppy food contains chicken with amino acids for building muscles for puppies.

Nutro also offers Limited Ingredient Diet Puppy Food with Australian and New Zealand lamb. It helps puppies get the optimal nutrition they need without added ingredients that could cause digestive problems.

Nutro goes further into specifics with Small Breed Puppy Food, a formula that caters to small breeds with a higher metabolism. Small breed puppies have higher requirements for energy than puppies of larger breeds.

We also carry Bell Bowls and products by Loving Pets which can prepare pet owners for the inevitable floor food pile. Bella mats  prevent splashes and retain spills with raised edges and anti-skid feet. The mats come in both tan and black and features a stylish bone shape.

Training Puppies

Training is very important for puppy care. When bringing a new puppy home, accidents are bound to happen until puppies can build up a routine.

Nature’s Miracle offers training pads to help combat problems. The Flowering Meadow Scent Release Dog and Puppy Training Pads are disposable pads that feature a scented attractant to let puppies know they have found the right place to relieve themselves. Moisture-activated fragrance can also help keep a new puppy home smelling fresh. The pads also come in Tropical scent as well.  You can find Nature’s Miracle products right here at J&M Aquatics and Pet Center.

Toys, Chews and Treats

Chew toys are important for all stages of a dog’s life. A puppy has brand new teeth that require softer material to help aid in the development of strong and healthy teeth.

Chomper has a great line of puppy toys that are interactive and will allow for bonding time with you as well as keeping your pets from being bored.

Merrick treats, like their Jerky Chip treats, are great for dogs of all ages and provide them with proteins and healthy fats in a great, all-natural and holistic treat.

And finally…

Skin and Coat Care

Puppies have developing coats. Therefore, their skin can be a little sensitive so it is best to use milder shampoos for baths.

Earthbath Puppy Shampoo is naturally tearless and pH-balanced for puppies’ sensitive skin. Its ingredients include natural cleansers, aloe vera and a dash of cherry essence.

Find all of these great products and MUCH MORE for your puppy at J&M Aquatics and Pet Center.

Information for this post taken from: http://www.petage.com/the-wide-world-of-puppy-products/

Why Cats Need to Play

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If you’re like me, it seems like every time you look for your cat you find him or her asleep. Even in the wild, felines sleep for the majority of the day.  This means it’s even more important for them to spend their waking hours playing!

Why? Play provides a chance for your cats to get exercise.  If you want a healthy, normal weight cat, that cat is going to need to move.  Play also gives your cat a way to relieve anxiety.  Yes, even cats can be anxious and worried and when they are they can exhibit bad behaviors like aggression or urine marking. By having some play time cats are able to get rid of that stress and anxiety.

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Playtime is also a release from boredom for cats.  If your cat is bored, he or she might be more likely to get into trouble. Cats who have their own toys to play with are much better off and have better ways of keeping themselves occupied than those who don’t have toys.

Finally, playtime gives your cat a chance to feel good! Exercise makes us feel good and therefore exercise for your cat will make it feel good too.  It even gives multiple cats a chance to bond with each other.

If you’re looking for toys for your indoor cats, make sure to stop by the store!  We really recommend these Vee Cat Toys: 

This article is a summary of the Drs. Foster and Smith “Playtime for Kitty” article.

4 common behaviors you want to STOP

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Even the best dog trainers don’t start out with perfect pets. Training a dog takes time and effort and with the four items mentioned below, sometimes it even takes extra equipment!

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First, if your dog is snooping in the garbage or getting into rooms he shouldn’t be in, there are a few possible easy fixes.  Try using a gate to keep the dog out of “off limits” rooms.  Try moving the trash can to a harder-to-reach place like under the sink or in a pantry closet with a secure door.

If neither of those options works, you can try an indoor pet barrier system. These emit loud tones and static charge when a dog enters an area he or she shouldn’t be in.  The collars are gentle enough not to punish, but to correct wrong behaviors.

Next, if your dog has a problem with barking, there are some no-equipment remedies that might work:

Try using a loud sound or physical distraction to take your dog’s focus away from what’s causing him or her to bark. Use a calm tone (yelling will make him bark more!) and, if necessary, create a wall with your body between your dog and the object of his or her barking.

You may also consider the possibility that the dog is barking because he or she has pent-up energy.  Is the dog getting enough exercise and attention? Increasing these could decrease annoying barking.

Third, maybe your dog’s problems are in the yard. Does your dog escape a lot? Is he or she a digger? If your dog is able to easily escape from your current wooden or chain-link fencing system, consider a buried or wireless fence.  These fences come with correction collars.  If the dog gets close to the edge of the yard, there are several levels of correction plus a “tone only” mode which will help your dog learn his or her boundaries.

If digging is the problem consider one of these two ideas:

1. Create a “digging allowed here” zone for your dog. Maybe digging is just a way your dog entertains himself.  If you don’t want him digging up your flowers, introduce him to a corner of the yard that he can dig in.

2. Consider that your dog needs more attention and exercise.  Perhaps he’s only digging because he’s bored.

Finally, let’s discuss bad behavior when you’re out for a walk.  When training your dog to walk on a leash, make sure to walk in front of him.  This shows your dog that you are the leader, not him. Use a short leash so that you have more control and make sure to reward your dog for good behavior with some of his or her favorite treats or a romp in the dog pond.

Make sure, too, that you’ve planned enough time for the walk. Dogs are interested in lots of things and love to sniff, wander and enjoy their walk time.  If you rush them, they may rebel or begin to act out on these walks.

If you’re out hiking and would prefer to have your dog off-leash, make sure to have treats handy.  I find that with my friend’s beagle, if he knows you have food he’ll always come back.  Still, if your dog is easily distracted by rabbits or other critters, consider a remote training collar.  You can choose from several corrective levels or a tone-only level and it will work for up to 100 yards.

Stop in to J&M Aquatics and Pet Center today and let us help you find the right training products for your pet!

Ear Infections

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Is there an odd odor around your dog’s ears?  Is he or she pawing at them more than usual? You may be looking at a dog with an ear infection.

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Ear infections occur because of an overgrowth of bacteria or yeast in the ears.  This is more common with dogs with floppy ears, dogs who swim, and dogs with allergies.

How can you make sure your dog’s ears stay clean and free of mites and bacterial overgrowth? You could try using a cleansing wipe.  These are available and could be a good solution if your dog is ok with you messing with his ears.

For other dogs, sometimes the best way to stop an infection is with a solution or liquid product like Ark Natural’s Ears All Right.  It’s an all-natural cleaning lotion made with premium botanicals. It helps to breakdown and remove wax, dirt and debris.  It also reduces inflammation and irritation and treats ear mites.

Some say that nutrition can play a role in improving your dog’s overall health, including that of his or her ears.  Whether or not premium dog food leads to better ear health is debatable, but we all know that feeding a dog a premium all-natural diet will make them healthier overall.

Stop in to J&M Aquatics and Pet Center today to find Ark Natural’s products and premium pet foods!  2851 North Avenue, Grand Junction, CO.

Planted Tanks

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It seems these days that planted tanks are becoming more popular.  What’s a planted tank, you ask? Exactly what it sounds like. Instead of plastic plants a planted tank has real plants growing in it.  For example:

To start and keep a successful planted tank, you’ll need several things.

1. Appropriate lighting.  Full-spectrum LED lights work well for planted tanks and allow for photosynthesis to occur.  You can find Fluval and Marineland LED lighting at J&M Aquatics.

2. Food (fertilizers, substrates, etc) – Seachem’s Aquavitro line of planted tank products is perfect for providing additives and other benefits for your plants.  Our experts at J&M Aquatics can help you determine which product is right for your tank.

3. Extra Tools – Again, you can find small tools, forceps and even a plant-friendly glue for keeping plants in place from Seachem’s Aquavitro Aquarium Tool line.  These can help with grooming those ever-growing plants and keeping your tank neat and tidy.

4. Plants! – What would a planted aquarium be without plants? We have a wide variety of plants from those that are easy to grow to ones that require a little more skill and finesse. We stock: Anubias, hairgrass, Java fren, Ludwigia, cryptocorynes, Vallisneria, Java Moss and more!

Stop in to J&M Aquatics today at 2851 North Avenue in Grand Junction and get started with your planted tank!

Dog Treats vs Scraps

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Ever save that piece of fat from a steak for your favorite pet? I bet you’re thinking that no harm can come from the occasional table scrap, right?  Well…don’t be so sure.

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According to a recent article by Drs. Foster & Smith, there are several reasons why actual dog treats are much better for your pet than table scraps.

First, you can end up creating a beggar with table scraps.  As soon as your pet knows you might be willing to give them a little treat from the table there they’ll be: sitting and staring at you with those cute little eyes, just waiting for a treat.  While you may be ok with that, your friends may not!

Next, table scraps don’t have nearly the nutritional value that true dog treats do.  They’re lacking vitamins and minerals necessary for your dog’s diet.  The empty calories provided by table scraps lead to weight gain; weight gain can lead to lots of other health problems for your pet.

If those reasons aren’t enough, feeding your pet table scraps can cause all sorts of digestive disorders.  From bad gas to bad breath and more, table scraps just don’t work well with your pet’s digestive system. They need a simple, stable diet that includes treats specific to them.

Finally, using table scraps to reward or treat your dog can lead to a picky eater and even a thief! Pets will start to choose those scraps over their own food and will eventually steal food from the table or knock over trash cans to get at tasty leftovers.

Click here to see what treats we have on sale!

Click here to see what treats we have on sale!

Instead, stick with great treats like those available at J&M Aquatics and Pet Center! These treats are more nutritious, have fewer calories and are great for your dog’s teeth.  They also help to fight off boredom and your dog’s urge to chew.