Winter Activities that Won’t Break the Bank

5 ideas for cold weather fun

Cold weather can really put a damper on outdoor entertainment and, since most dogs don’t really enjoy watching TV, it can make for a very bored pet. If your pet enjoys the snow, then have at it! Get yourself bundled up (and consider a weatherproof coat for any short haired pets) and spend an hour hiking, playing fetch, or just running around in the fresh powder. Just be sure to clear their paws of any ice or salt when you get home, and always make sure their chips and/or tags are up to date and secure. If your dog is like ours, however, they won’t even go near the backdoor unless they desperately need to pee. So, for the warmth seekers, here are a few affordable, accessible winter activities.

Training and/or agility.

Not only will it refresh your buddy’s memory on how to behave, but training your pet truly enriches your bond. Whether you enroll them in a class or promise to train them for half an hour twice a week at home, training and agility will stimulate them physically and mentally – and it can all be done indoors.

Treat puzzles.

For smarter breeds who genuinely get bored and maybe destructive, interactive feeders are a great way to keep them sharp, entertained, and happy. Look online for one that accommodates your pups’ smarts (as they have varying levels of difficulty), load it up with some Pro-Treats, and watch the concentration commence.

Play dates.

Most dog people have other dog-owning friends, making winter play dates a great way for both of you to get out and socialize. You get to catch up with a pal and your dog gets to run around, play, and sniff some new smells, which is great for their mental stimulation, too.

Visit someone.

For seniors in assisted living, winters can be long and lonely. If your pet is well behaved enough, consider volunteering some time to visit them and make their day. No matter how cold outside, this will warm you from the inside out.

What’s your favorite way to keep your pet entertained in winter? We’d really love to hear your suggestions on Twitter – be sure to tag us @StewartPet!

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5 Tips for Helping Your Overweight Pet in the New Year

chubby pug dog on scale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When rolling into a new year, it’s almost impossible not to consider a few goals and ways to improve yourself. If you’re like most people, you’re entering 2019 with the hopes of becoming a happier, healthier you and the same should go for your pet. Over half of the nation’s dogs and cats are overweight, which means the following tips on helping them lose some weight and keep it off may apply to you… er, well, them.

1. Portion control.

It’s just as important for pets as it is for people. Try scaling back their meal size by a ¼ cup or less (depending on your pet) and, when it comes to treating, remember that size doesn’t matter. Your pet will eat any size portion you give them, so be mindful. If you’re looking for small treats, check out our Pro-Treat Chicken Breast. It’s lean and packs a ton of flavor your dog will love!

2. Keep moving.

A little fetch in the backyard, a nice jaunt around the neighborhood, even playing keep away in the living room are all great ways to keep your pet’s body moving and some weight off.

3. Consider food quality.

Just like with humans, quality ingredients devoid of excess fat, chemicals, and fillers are processed easier and keep digestive tracts healthy and clear. Consider switching to a freeze dried diet – just take a peek at our easy-to-read ingredient list; our Raw Naturals line offers top quality nutrition that’s convenient, easy to feed and delicious!

4. Keep a log.

It may sound silly, but write down the things you do each day. It might not feel like you’re doing much on a day-to-day basis, but if you look back on a month’s worth of effort and notice even the slightest change in your pet, you’ll know what you’re doing is making a difference.

5. Consider their quality of life.

You are the single biggest influence in your pet’s life, so don’t forget why you’re doing this when they look up at you with big puppy-dog eyes begging for a bite of your dinner. Obesity in pets can lead to a variety of health issues and ultimately shorten their time with you. Being overweight can make simple tasks like walking and squatting exhausting and uncomfortable – and we know you don’t want that. Stick to your guns and watch the transformation happen!

If you have a transformation tale to tell, please share your pet’s story on Facebook! From our fur family to yours, we hope your 2019 is the absolute best it can be.

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This Year’s Holiday Must-Haves For The Animals on Your list

must have holiday gifts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s no secret that our go-to gift for the people we have nothing for is a present for their pet. As the pet product pros, we know that practicality comes in the form of a collar, healthy treat, or grooming tool!  If you ask us, buying for someone’s pet is an easy, thoughtful gift for the holidays. Here are  a few of our newest gift ideas to make it even easier this gift-giving season.

For Dog People

  • Our ProTreats are a healthy, delicious treat you can feel good giving any animal in your life. Made from 100% pure liver, these freeze dried morsels are perfectly portioned for easy treating. Available in beef, pork, turkey, bison, lamb, chicken, or duck.
  • Give the gift of a new look with any of our hundreds of leash and collar sets. From reflective, to leather, to fashion overlay, we are constantly striving to release fresh new patterns to accommodate every pet’s style all year ‘round.
  • Make nail trimming safer and easier by gifting the Quickfinder, our foolproof take on clippers with a lighted quick detector indicating when it’s safe to snip – also safe for cats, if they’ll let you!

For Cat People

  • Our Easy Grow Catnip Kit brings the all natural fun of catnip indoors in an all-inclusive kit. Or, if your friend doesn’t have a green thumb, there’s always the Cat Grass Plus, which only requires one watering.
  • There are plenty of cat collars to choose from, too!

For Horse People

  • Wow them with the new Deluxe Grooming Kit, it’s bound to meet all their care needs – in a convenient nylon tote!
  • Perhaps a new halter or lead would be the perfect gift for the horse owner in your life.
  • For the unorganized owner, a hay bag or tool tote could make for a practical present.

If any of these gift ideas strike your fancy, just click the “Where to Buy” tab on our website to find your nearest retailer!

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Top 5 Pawliday Movies for Dog Lovers

movies for dog lovers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We don’t know about you,

but this time of year we commence the Christmas Movie Marathon! We love the classics like Home Alone and The Santa Clause. We also like to throw a few flicks in there for Fido. So spark up the fireplace, grab your hot chocolate and oversized blanket, and press play on these top 5 movies for dog lovers.

1. 12 Dogs of Christmas: Great Puppy Rescue.

The story of a girl who makes it her mission to save a home for orphaned dogs from a wealthy real estate developer trying to close it down. Complete with musical numbers and a whole holiday theme.

2. A Dog Named Christmas.

Grab your tissues and get ready for this Hallmark classic about a dog (you guessed it, named Christmas) and the effect he has on a young boy and his family.

3. The Dog Who Saved Christmas.

Think Home Alone: Pet Edition. When the Bannister family adopts a watchdog after their neighbor is robbed around the holidays, the newest family member makes sure to show the burglars who’s boss.

4. I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown.

When Linus and Lucy’s younger brother, ReRun, wants a dog for Christmas, Snoopy’s brother Spike may be just what Santa’s elves had in mind.

5. How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

A classic that never gets old – not just because it’s been around forever, but because we understand wanting to live alone with your dog during the holiday, too, sometimes.

What’s your favorite holiday movie or tradition to include pets in? Tell us more on Facebook!

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Ways to Save on Holiday Traveling with Pets

traveling with pets

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you traveling with your pet this year?

It’s no secret that the holidays aren’t exactly an inexpensive time of year. Believe us, we know that between gifts, meals, and travel it never hurts to save where you can. If you’re planning a trip this holiday season you know that certain preparations must be made; if you plan on bringing your pet along, it can add a whole new level of needs… and expenses. It’s inevitable that bringing your pet along will mean additional fees, but it can be so worth it to have them near you during a time of togetherness. Before you book anything, here are a couple of tips and resources to help you save some cash so you can include your pet in the holiday love…

Car vs. Plane.

If your destination is close enough, consider driving. Not only is it less stressful on you and your pet, it’s also a nice break for your wallet. As an added bonus, you can pack as much as you want, stop often, and you’ll have your vehicle during your vacation!

If you have to fly, fees are likely going to be the same for your pet regardless of the time of year so you’ll have to save on your fare as best you can.

Hotel Fares.

There are PLENTY of websites to find discounted hotel rooms, but Official Pet Hotels.com is obviously exclusive to pet-friendly spots. Combined with Holidayers.com, a site dedicated to finding the best holiday rates, you should be able to save a few bucks!

Stay Prepared.

Make sure you are well prepared on behalf of your pet, because an unexpected vet bill in a new place would be a major yuletide bummer and unforeseen expense. Make sure you have any medications they may need, plenty of food, a sweater if needed, and their leash, harness, and collar with proper identification.

  • Pro-Tip: Pack more than your intended stay in the event of getting delayed in adverse weather.

 

Do you have any tricks to saving money this holiday season? Do tell! Mention us on Twitter @StewartPet.

 

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A Thanksgiving Meal Safe for Pets to Gobble

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanksgiving for pets? Yum!

Even us pet-nutrition peeps are guilty of slipping our pets a nibble of something off our plates, but we try really hard to limit it to special occasions. That being said, what’s a more special occasion to share food than Thanksgiving?!  I mean, they’re family! It’s only fair to include them in the festivities! But it’s important to know that some ingredients that go into our Thanksgiving fare aren’t exactly good for our pets, so we came up with a little compromise for your canine that simply requires a little forethought.

As you’re prepping, set aside some of the boiled sweet potatoes and regular potatoes before mashing with all the extras, a slice or scoop of cranberry sauce, and some turkey gravy. Once the turkey’s done, remove the skin from a few pieces and dice up the meat. Mix everything together (unless you prefer a better presentation) and serve! Not only will your companion be completely pumped on this Thanksgiving treat, but you can relax knowing you’re not feeding them any unnecessary butter, salt, marshmallows, or incognito onions.

For those of you who aren’t cooking or want to give dogs a new flavor for the occasion, consider our Stewart Pro-Treat freeze dried liver treats or  Stewart Raw Naturals freeze dried turkey recipe dog food to meet their poultry quota without the unhealthy add-ons.

Have a safe and Happy Thanksgiving! Show us your pets gobbling up their plates on our Facebook page!

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Pet Cancer Awareness Month: What to Know When Looking at Lumps

veterinarian with dog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most pet owners know the stomach-dropping feeling of finding a lump on their animal, and it’s easy for our imaginations to jump to the worst-case scenario. It’s important to know that less than half  of the bumps and lumps you find on dogs are not malignant, but that certainly doesn’t mean you can ignore the issue. Seeing as November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month, we thought we’d offer a slight bit of insight into the different types of lumps and bumps pets can develop. With that said, we always say it’s always best to get your veterinarian’s professional opinion.

Sebaceous Cysts.

These are superficial, liquid-filled bumps caused by clogged oil glands and typically rupture on their own but, in some cases, can require surgical removal. They do occasionally develop into tumors called sebaceous adenomas which rarely present bigger health issues. Most pet owners are aware if this is something their pet is prone to.

Lipomas.

A commonly encountered painless lump that is typically benign. These lumps stay in one place after growing to a certain size and don’t usually require removal unless they impede your pet’s mobility.

Mast Cell Tumor.

While some of these tumors may be benign, they’re usually malignant and should be monitored closely. Look for any changes in size, color, and shape, as any rapid changes in these characteristics can be indicative of a mast cell tumor and should be looked at right away. Common malignant tumors include:

  • Abdominal tumors, which can be hard to detect from the outside. Look for diarrhea, weight loss, bloody stool, and indications of stomach pain.
  • Mammary tumors, which are most common in unspayed females and will be found in the mammary wall.
  • Skin cancers, which are the most common; look for unusual red or black spots on the skin, small lumps on the spine, skull, or pelvic region, or sores that won’t heal, typically near their head.
  • Other lumps and bumps your pet can develop but rarely cause health issues include:

Warts.

Most commonly found around the mouth, warts are caused by a virus and will typically go away on their own but older dogs may require professional removal.

Hematomas.

Hematomas are basically large blood blisters that form around the site of a recently injured area.

Abscesses.

An abscess is a pus-filled sac that forms around a wound to aid in healing.

It’s important to take time regularly to give your pet a good rub down so that you can monitor any new developments and consult your veterinarian as necessary. Remember that feeding your pet a quality diet along with regular exercise can play a paramount role in the prevention of these popping up.

If you have a story about Pet Cancer Awareness you’d like to share, please feel free to head over to our Facebook page.

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4 Tricks to Keeping Halloween a Treat: Easing Pets’ Anxieties

puppy dressed as a witch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ah, Halloween. Fun for people, but it can be scary for pets

Like Fourth of July, Halloween isn’t an easy holiday for pets. Not only is the doorbell ringing repeatedly, but there are masked strangers at the door holding bags that could be interpreted as threatening (to an unsuspecting pet, at least.) Not to mention all the chocolate, hard candy, and taffy around the house. For many families, Halloween is a much-anticipated holiday – so let’s keep it fun for everyone. Below are a few tricks to keeping pets safe on October 31.

1. Howlin’ from the House.

The safest place for your pet during witching hour is indoors. Since the door will inevitably be opening and closing, it’s best to designate a room, preferably toward the back of the house, specially for them. If you plan on having company, put a sign on the door asking ghoulish guests to keep out of your animal’s room.

*Pro-Tip: Put a few of their favorite playthings (perhaps a chew toy stuffed with Pro-Treats)  in the room, and be sure to pop in and remind them they haven’t been forgotten.

2. Tucker Treat.

Take your dog on a run or to the dog park during the day so they’re too tired to worry too much about what the racket’s about.

3. Other Tricks.

For pets that have extremely high anxiety, consider a pressure wrap. Better yet, if your animal is comfortable in a crate, let them decompress there and do what you can to avoid them seeing the costumed crowds at the door.

4. Loot Lockdown.

Whether it’s the bags of candy you buy before Halloween or the mounds your kids bring home thereafter, it’s imperative to keep it out of pets’ reach. Designate a special place for it and be diligent in making sure all members of your family are keeping the sweets there and properly disposing of wrappers.

What are some ways you include your pet in Halloween? Do your dress them up or let them peacefully retreat? Share with us on Facebook!

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Pup-Friendly Pumpkin Treat Recipes

Boxer dog with pumpkin and autumn leaves

October 26 marks National Pumpkin Day

and, let’s just say, we are totally on board this pumpkin treat bandwagon. From lattes to baked goods we love (and anxiously await) this fall classic. Of course, as pet people, we are always looking for ways to include our four-legged loves in the yummy fun and luckily we can.

You may already know that pure canned pumpkin (NOT pre-sweetened pumpkin pie filling) is safe and even beneficial for pets (not to mention they love it!) Naturally high in fiber, vitamins A and C, and zinc, pumpkin helps keep pets’ digestive tracts healthy while also giving their skin and coat a boost. So, in honor of National Pumpkin Day, here are a few yummy pumpkin treats for your pup.

Pumpkin Bakes

  • ¾ – 1 can 100% pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Optional: 1 ripe banana
    • Preheat oven to 350º. Mix pumpkin and honey (and banana if using). Mix flour and baking powder and add to pumpkin mixture – dough should be dry. If it is too moist, add more flour. Roll dough and cut into desired shape. Place on parchment-covered baking sheet and bake 10-12 minutes. Cool and store.

Grain-Free PBPs

  • 1 ½ cups coconut flour
  • ½ cup organic peanut butter
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted then slightly cooled
  • 1 cup 100% pure pumpkin puree
    • Preheat oven to 350º. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Roll dough to ½ or ¼ inch thick and cut into desired shape. Place on parchment-covered baking sheet and bake 13-15 minutes. Cool and store up to three weeks.

Easy Peasy Pumpkin Freezies

  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup 100% pure pumpkin puree
    • Combine ingredients in bowl and divide into large ice tray. Freeze and treat!

Do you have a pup friendly pumpkin treat recipe?  Share with us on Facebook!

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Eyes, Ears, Nose, and Mouth: A Peek into Pets’ Wellness

ear care for dogs

October is Pet Wellness Month!

We want to take this opportunity to remind you that you are the first line of defense for your pet’s health and wellness. There are many things you can do at home to monitor and maintain your pet’s health long before it requires a vet appointment. This month (and, honestly, every month) take the time to check your pet from head to toe. Of course, trim nails and a healthy coat certainly contribute to their well being, but for today’s lesson we’re showing you what to look for above the neck.

● Eyes.

Look in your pet’s eyes – tell them you love them. Now, look at their actual eyeballs: they should be clear, bright, and white with no excessive tears, crust, or discharge. Inner eyelids should be pink – not red or white. Make sure the hair around the eyes is trim to avoid irritation.

● Ears.

When untreated, ear infections can cause permanent damage to a sense your pet relies on. Check your pet’s ears regularly for any excess redness or build up and gently clean them. If the build up is significant and smells, it’s likely an infection that will require veterinary attention.

● Nose.

Your dog or cat’s nose should appear moist and leatherlike, though if it’s a little dry it’s not necessarily a cause for panic. Monitor any cracks, swelling, dripping, or color changes closely – if you notice blood or bumps that won’t go away call your veterinarian.

● Mouth.

Your pet’s teeth are an integral player in the game of health. Keeping them clean is one of the best ways to keep them strong, so make sure in addition to at-home cleanings once a week they go in for a professional one at least once a year.

If you have any grooming or care tips you swear by, we’d love to hear more on Facebook!

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