Your Dog in Winter

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It’s easy to hibernate in the warmth and comfort of your house all winter long and just pretend the cold doesn’t exist.  It’s also easy to run into the gym, get your workout in, and then continue your hibernation. It’s not so easy for your dog. Dogs still need exercise, even in winter.  There are great sports out there that are pet friendly, like snowshoeing or cross-country skiing (check the trail system to make sure dogs are allowed).

For more tips on how to keep your dog active in Winter, click here.  Then stop by J&M Aquatics and Pet Center in Grand Junction for winter coats, booties and treats for your pet.

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Treat your pet well at the holidays – know which people food is good and which is bad!

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If you’re like me, whether you’ve got pets of your own or you’re watching someone else’s, you want them to have a special holiday too.  Ideally this should mean that they get a pet-appropriate toy or treat.  Still, sometimes it’s hard to resist giving them a little people food treat. Here’s a quick rundown of which foods you should AVOID giving your pets this holiday season:

Alcohol – Duh. This can cause all sorts of problems from vomiting to difficulty breathing, and even death! It’s not funny to get the dog drunk.

Avocado – Is more dangerous for for small pets, birds and animals like horses and sheep.  Still, it’s probably not the best for your cat or dog either.

Chocolate – we all know chocolate is bad for pets.  It, along with coffee and caffeine, contains methylxanthine.  This causes all kinds of problems and sickness for your canine.  Just say NO to chocolate cookies for the dog.

Citrus – Citric acid can cause irritation to your pet’s central nervous system and digestive system.

Coconut or Coconut Oil – Small amounts are probably ok, but it can cause digestive problems and diarrhea.  Why risk it?

Grapes and Raisins – you know these are toxic to your pet.  They can cause kidney failure and are best avoided at all costs.

Macadamia Nuts (or any other nut for that matter) – can cause weakness, depression and even hyperthermia in dogs. Other nuts can cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Milk and Dairy – Dogs are basically lactose intolerant. Don’t give them an upset tummy 😦

Onions, Garlic, Chives – Cats are more prone to this than dogs, but it’s better to err on the side of caution.  These cause digestive irritation and can cause damage to red blood cells.

Raw or uncooked meat, eggs or bones – These can contain E coli which is dangerous to humans and pets. Bones are never a good idea because your pet can choke on them, or they can splinter and cause injury to your pet’s digestive tract.

Salty foods like potato chips – Too much salt causes excessive thirst and can lead to sodium ion poisoning.

Xylitol – That fake sugar stuff that’s in everything from candy to toothpaste, can lead to liver failure due to an increase in insulin production.

Yeast Dough – You’ve all heard the story about the dog who ate the yeast rolls…don’t let this happen to your pet! Too much yeast can bloat and swell your dog’s stomach, which could cause it to twist.

The best choices for your pet are natural, unflavored and unseasoned products like pumpkin, carrots, and plain baked chicken.  Actually, the best choices are treats made specifically for your pet!  Come in and see us and find just the right treat for your cat, dog, fish, bird, gerbil, hamster, guinea pig, lizard, snake or any other pet you’ve got!

New Heartworm medication

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Have you heard of ProHeart 6? We just learned about it this week.  It’s a medication that prevents heartworm disease in dogs 6 months and older.  Your vet injects it and it’s good for heartworm protection for 6 months.

It definitely makes it easier to protect your dog against heartworm disease.  Using an injection like this means you don’t have to remember to give your dog medication every day or even once a month.

This post was not sponsored by ProHeart 6, it’s just information we thought you’d find handy. You can find more info at www.proheart6.com.

Holiday gift ideas

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It’s the holiday season and we know you’re stressing over gifts for everyone from your mom to your dog.  Here are some ideas to help you not only find gifts for your pets, but for others in your family too!

Of course pet gifts are easiest at a pet supply store.  We’ve got dog beds, new dog toys, slo-bowls for those dogs who like to eat too fast, new winter jackets or shoes, doggie backpacks, and new water bowls too.

For cats, a new scratching post or place to climb is always welcome.  Cats get bored too and so finding interactive toys for them to play with are great.  CatIT Senses toys are one to look at.  There are several different ones, some combining ball tracks with treat games and other “sense” enhancing items.

CatIT toys are available at J&M Aquatics and Pet Center in Grand Junction, Colorado

CatIT toys are available at J&M Aquatics and Pet Center in Grand Junction, Colorado

For aquarium pets, try adding a new plant or decoration.  If you’ve got small pets or birds, consider a new toy for them as well.  Gerbils and Hamsters constantly need things to chew on, so new toys for that are always a hit!

But what about the people in your life?  Are they pet lovers? Do they have pets? What about…

  • a new aquarium LED lighting system
  • new decorations or a gift card to buy new fish for an existing aquarium
  • a new leash or harness for their favorite canine
  • a desktop aquarium kit
  • a placemat for food and water bowls
  • a donation to a local shelter or organization (like CLAWS or the Grand Valley Pit Crew here in Grand Junction)
  • volunteer to pet sit for their next vacation
  • find stocking stuffers like pet hair removers and gourmet pet treats
  • if you know them really well, consider getting them a brand new pet! We’ve got a great selection of small furry friends, reptiles, birds and fish.

Happy holiday shopping! Come see us at 2851 1/2 North Avenue in Grand Junction!

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