Ensure Pawsitive Boarding Experience for Your Furry Friend This Holiday Season

Ensuring a Pawsitive Boarding Experience for Your Furry Friend This Holiday Season

Introduction
As the holiday season approaches, many pet owners plan trips to visit family or enjoy a well-deserved vacation. Considering boarding your dog during this time, thoughtful preparation is critical to ensuring a stress-free experience for you and your furry companion. Follow these steps to make the boarding process smooth and enjoyable for your four-legged friend.
1. Early Research
Start your preparations by researching local boarding facilities. Find reputable establishments with positive reviews, clean facilities, and experienced staff. Schedule a visit to the chosen facility to ensure it meets your standards and addresses any concerns you may have.
2. Up-to-Date Vaccinations
Ensure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date well before their boarding dates. Most facilities require proof of current vaccinations to maintain a healthy environment for all pets.
3. Familiarization with the Facility
Help your dog acclimate to the boarding facility by taking them for short visits before the actual stay. Allow them to explore the environment, meet the staff, and get comfortable with the surroundings.
4. Pack Familiar Items
Bring your dog’s favorite toys, bedding, and clothing with your scent. Familiar items can provide comfort and security in the new environment.
5. Maintain Routine
While your dog is at the boarding facility, request that the staff stick to your pet’s regular feeding and exercise schedule. Consistency with Routine can ease anxiety and help your dog adjust more smoothly.
6. Emergency Contact Information
Provide the boarding facility with accurate emergency contact information, including your phone number, an alternative contact, and information for your veterinarian. Ensure the staff is aware of any specific medical or behavioral concerns.
7. Relaxation Techniques
If your dog tends to get anxious, consider introducing relaxation techniques such as leaving a piece of your clothing with them or providing a calming spray or diffuser recommended by your veterinarian.
8. Positive Goodbyes
When dropping off your dog, keep your farewell positive and brief. Dogs can pick up on your emotions, so maintaining calm will help reassure them.
Conclusion
By carefully preparing and choosing a suitable boarding facility, you can ensure a positive experience for your dog during the holiday season. A well-prepared pup is more likely to enjoy its stay, making relaxing and enjoying your time away easier.
Maryland's Marvels: 10 Popular Rescues Making a Difference

Maryland’s Marvels: 10 Popular Rescues Making a Difference

Introduction
For many reasons, we wholeheartedly embrace the adopt, don’t shop movement at Barking Trails. Adoption is significant for dogs because it keeps them out of shelters and off the streets and allows them to enjoy a loving home and family. If you’re looking for the most impactful and compassionate dog rescues in Maryland, you’re in for a treat. Below is a list of organizations dedicated to saving and rehoming our four-legged friends. Each rescue has a unique story to explore, from partnering with shelters across states to rescuing senior dogs. So, let’s dive in and discover how we can contribute to the well-being of Maryland’s beloved dogs.
1. Capital Animal Rescue and Environmental Foundation

Location: Aspen Hill
Established: 2009
Focus: This foundation, established in 2009, is on a mission to rescue, rehabilitate, and place dogs in new loving homes. By partnering with nonprofits, they’ve been making a significant impact. Support their efforts through donations or start the adoption process. For more information, connect with Capital Animal Rescue and Environmental Foundation Here

2. MAS Rescue

Location: Baltimore
Impact: MAS Rescue, founded by the passionate Mary Snyder, has been a beacon of hope for over 5,000 dogs and cats since 2005. They specialize in rescuing at-risk animals in other shelters and finding them loving homes. You can contribute to their cause through donations and explore the wonderful dogs waiting for adoption. For more information, connect with MAS Rescue.

3. Last Chance Animal Rescue
Location: Waldorf
Mission: Last Chance Animal Rescue is not just an organization; it’s a lifeline for animals facing euthanasia. With over 50 shelter partnerships spanning 12 states, they have saved and rehomed more than 10,000 cats and dogs since 1999. You can be part of their mission by donating or checking out the adorable dogs available for adoption. Have questions? Reach out to Last Chance Animal Rescue Here.
4. The Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter (BARCS)

Location: Baltimore
Status: 501(c)3 Nonprofit
Commitment: BARCS, operating as Baltimore’s leading animal services organization since 2005, provides shelter, medical care, and homes for nearly 30 animals daily. You can make a meaningful difference through donations and explore dogs available for adoption. Contact BARCS for any inquiries.

5. Defenders of Animal Rights Inc.

Location: Phoenix (Founded in 1975)
Vision: Striving to make Maryland cruelty-free, Defenders of Animal Rights Inc. offers rescue services, veterinary care, and rehabilitation. Support their cause through donations and explore adoptable dogs. Connect with Defenders of Animal Rights Inc.

6. Rude Ranch Animal Rescue
Location: Harwood
Objective: Rude Ranch aims to end euthanasia by rescuing, caring for, and adopting neglected animals. You can contribute to their mission with donations or even start the adoption process. Reach out to Rude Ranch Animal Rescue Here.
7. Double Dog Dare Rescue
Location: Westminster
Operation: This volunteer-run organization fosters and cares for neglected dogs in rural areas. Support their endeavors through donations and explore the adorable dogs ready for adoption.Have questions? Contact Double Dog Dare Rescue Here.
8. Montgomery County Animal Services & Adoption Center
Location: Derwood
Role: This center, dedicated to caring for homeless animals, provides round-the-clock services. You can make a significant impact through donations and explore dogs available for adoption.Reach out to Montgomery County Animal Services & Adoption Center with any inquiries.
9. Senior Dog Sanctuary
Location: Severn
Specialization: This sanctuary rescues, fosters, and adopts senior dogs. You can support their cause through donations or explore adorable senior dogs ready for adoption. Contact Senior Dog Living Here.
10. Small Miracles Cat & Dog Rescue
Location: Ellicott City
Legacy: Small Miracles Cat & Dog Rescue has been a no-kill shelter, finding homes for over 7,000 dogs since 2011. You can support their mission through donations and explore dogs ready for adoption. Contact Small Miracles Cat & Dog Rescue for any inquiries.
Require assistance with your new pup?
If you recently welcomed a new canine companion, the journey ahead involves crucial elements such as grooming, socialization, and exercise to ensure their well-being. At Barking Trails, we stand as Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia’s best pet care provider, offering comprehensive services tailored to your pet care needs. Contact us today at (301) 284-0365 and learn what we can do for you.
A Tail-Wagging Journey Through Canine History

A Tail-Wagging Journey Through Canine History

Ever ponder the sheer variety in the doggy world? With a whopping 400 plus breeds, these furry pals are not just a testament to cuteness but also to thousands of years of evolution, selective breeding, and, oh, the joy of belly rubs. Let’s sniff our way through their past!

Picture this: 60 million years ago, an itty-bitty creature named Miacis trotted the globe, unwittingly destined to be the grand ancestor of today’s pooches. Fast forward a few millennia, and voilà, we meet the Cynodictis, the ‘original doggo,’ branching into what would become wolves and eventually Fido, your modern couch companion.

Now, the doggie detective work gets wild. While the timeline of when wolves turned into wagging tail bearers is fuzzy—think somewhere between a Stone Age toolkit and the first iPhone—evidence points to spots like northern Eurasia and even hints at China, India, and Africa getting in on the early days of dog domestication.

And let’s talk about ancient dog art. From European caves to Egyptian tombs, our ancestors were quite the dog enthusiasts, etching Fidos in history everywhere. The Arabian Peninsula boasts the oldest dog carvings—some with leashes, dating back 8,000 years. Meanwhile, in Egypt, canine statues didn’t just sit pretty; they guarded sacred sites and even tagged along with their humans into the afterlife. Talk about loyalty!

Jump to the Bronze Age, and the doggy directory expanded to mastiffs, wolf dogs, sight hounds, and more. Each had a role, from chasing rodents in England to helping hunters. It was all about breeding the right pup for the job. Take the German shepherd, with its sleek body and flying trot, or the Greyhound, the Usain Bolt of the dog world. And don’t get me started on the Afghan hound’s hip flexibility—nature’s way of saying, “Let’s navigate those crags in style!”

Fast forward to today, and the American Kennel Club sorts our furry friends into seven groups. From sporting to herding, there’s a breed for every niche. And innovation isn’t taking a paws—new breeds are popping up, like the Goldendoodle, a curly-haired Einstein that waltzed into the limelight in the ’90s.

So next time you’re gazing into those big, doughy eyes of your pup, take a moment to appreciate the epic saga of dog kind. From their wild wolf ancestors to the diverse array of companions we love today, dogs truly are humanity’s oldest and dearest friends. And hey, who knows what new breeds we’ll be cooing over in the years to come?

Safe Weather Conditions for Walking

Safe Weather Conditions for Walking

The 5-second rule goes for dog walking as well. Place the back of your hand on the pavement for 5 seconds. It will be too hot for your dog’s paws if it’s too hot for you. Generally, the idea is to keep dogs indoors or in air-conditioned rooms when it’s close to 100 degrees outside. For colder weather, it’s best to stay below 40 degrees. Never take a dog out at 0 degrees.

This information can be swayed a little by a dog’s size. Larger dogs can endure more intense temperatures, but small dogs cannot. When the temp drops to 40 and below, small dogs should only be taken out for 15 minutes or less. Dog sweaters and booties are great ways to warm your pet in colder weather. If you want advice on temperature drops, Mental Floss has a beautiful chart for Fahrenheit and Celsius temperatures concerning dog walking. Remember, some breeds, like huskies or malamutes, can take the colder weather temps.

When you think about your dog’s safety, you want only the best for your pet. With these tips, you will have a happy and thriving pooch. Also, consider that every dog is different and has unique needs or allergies. You and your vet will be able to access your dog’s needs. If there is an emergency, contact the closest animal hospital or vet in town.

Dog Health 101

Dog Health 101

Dog Health 101: The Ultimate Guide to a Happy and Healthy Pooch

When it comes to canine companions, ensuring their well-being is paramount. Whether you’re welcoming a new furry friend into your home or seeking to improve your pet’s overall health, understanding the essentials of dog health is crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down the key aspects of dog health, including diet, safe weather conditions for outdoor activities, and essential tips to keep your beloved pet in top shape.

1.Nutritional Guidelines

Feeding your dog a balanced diet is essential for their overall health and happiness. While it might be tempting to share your table scraps with your canine companion, it’s crucial to be aware of foods that can be harmful to dogs. Here’s a list of foods to avoid:

Harmful Foods: 
  • Alcohol: Dogs should never be exposed to alcohol, as it can result in liver and brain problems similar to those experienced by humans.
  • Avocado: Avocado contains persin, which can lead to vomiting and diarrhea in dogs when consumed in excess.
  • Almonds: Almonds can be hazardous, as their shape may cause organ damage or blockages if not chewed properly.
  • Bones: Be cautious with bones, especially chicken bones, as they can splinter and cause internal injuries.
  • Caffeine: Consumption of caffeine can be fatal for dogs, so it’s best to keep them away from coffee and tea.
  • Chocolate: Chocolate disrupts the metabolic system and can lead to severe vomiting and even fatality in dogs.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon can irritate a dog’s digestive system and may lead to liver problems.
  • Fat: Fat trimmings can trigger pancreatitis in dogs, which can be painful and dangerous.
  • Garlic and Onions: All forms of garlic and onion can damage red blood cells and result in vomiting, breathing difficulties, and anemia.
  • Grapes and Raisins: Grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs.
  • Ice Cream: Due to high sugar content and potential lactose intolerance, ice cream should be avoided.
  • Macadamia Nuts: These nuts are extremely toxic to dogs and can cause vomiting, leg weakness, and lethargy.
  • Pits (Fruits): Fruits with large pits, such as peaches, can obstruct a dog’s bowels, and some pits contain harmful cyanide.
  • Salt: Excessive salt consumption can lead to sodium ion poisoning, so it’s essential to regulate your dog’s salt intake.
  • Sugar: Just like in humans, sugar can lead to weight gain and dental issues in dogs.
Beneficial Foods:

On the flip side, there are many foods that can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet, including:

  • Breads
  • Cashews
  • Cheese
  • Coconut
  • Corn
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Ham
  • Honey
  • Milk (be mindful of lactose intolerance)
  • Peanut Butter
  • Peanuts
  • Popcorn
  • Pork
  • Quinoa
  • Salmon
  • Shrimp
  • Tuna
  • Turkey
  • Yogurt

For a more detailed explanation of each food item, you can refer to the American Kennel Club’s website or FETCH WebMD for comprehensive information on dog health and nutrition.

2. Weather Safety for Outdoor Activities

Ensuring your dog’s safety during outdoor activities, such as walks, is vital. Just as the “5-second rule” applies to hot pavement for humans, it holds true for dogs as well. If the pavement is too hot for the back of your hand, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws. Here are some guidelines to consider:

  • High Temperatures: When the temperature approaches 100 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s best to keep your dog indoors or in air-conditioned spaces.
  • Cold Weather: In temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, limit outdoor exposure for small dogs to 15 minutes or less. Larger dogs may tolerate colder temperatures better.
  • Protective Gear: Invest in dog sweaters and booties for colder weather to keep your pet warm and comfortable.
  • Consider Breed: Some dog breeds, like Huskies or Malamutes, are better equipped to handle colder weather, but always take individual dog needs into account.

If you need precise guidance based on temperature levels, Mental Floss provides an informative chart that covers Fahrenheit and Celsius temperatures in relation to dog walking.

Remember, every dog is unique, and it’s essential to consult with your veterinarian to determine your pet’s specific needs and potential allergies. In case of emergencies, always have the contact information for the nearest animal hospital or veterinarian on hand.

By following these comprehensive guidelines for dog health, you’ll be well-equipped to provide your furry companion with a happy and thriving life, ensuring their well-being in all aspects of their care.

Cat Behavior 101

Cat Behavior 101

Cats are curiously strange creatures, but none the less adorable in every way. Just like dogs, they have their own ways of expressing their feelings to you and others. I’m sure you have come across a cat in passing. You know when a cat walks up to you with its fuzzy little face and
swishy tail, and rubs its body on you? That is often a sign of affection. There are plenty of cat behaviors to look into so let’s jump in.

  1. Purring: Purring is most often taken as a sign of relaxed behavior. Your cat is probably its most content when purring. However, it can be synonymous with sickness and stress. Cats calm themselves with the act of purring as it releases endorphins.
  2. Kneading: Kneading is also a sign of positive emotion. When kittens are feeding, they paw the mother to stimulate milk release. Doing this as an adult cat can bring back fond memories and pleasure.
  3. Belly Up: When a cat reveals its underside, it is in its most relaxed state. That is the most vulnerable position. You know your cat feels safe around you if they do this.
  4. Gifts: Ever have your cat bring in surprise gifts for you? A dead mouse or bird? It might be unsettling, but it’s a natural hunting instinct.
  5. Cheek Rubs: There are many scent glands on a cat’s face; the mouth, chin, and cheeks are all gland areas. When they rub their cheek against you or furniture, they are “bunting” or rubbing their scent on their claimed territory.
  6. Scratching: To sharpen the claws and leave scent trails, your cat will scratch common areas. Cats have scent glands on their paws, so it is a common behavior to scratch. If you don’t like furniture scratching, invest in a scratching post in an open area of your home.
  7. Meowing: Meowing can mean a plethora of things, from anything like “feed me” to “I want outside.” Owners generally learn to interpret their cats specific meows. It’s just their way of communicating with you. If you want a comprehensive list of potential cat meows and meanings, check out this link.
  8. Tail End: Cats will present their behinds to owners they trust. Like dogs, cats will allow other cats to sniff them with a raised tail as the “okay.” If your cat does this to you, they are presenting themselves for affection and pets.
  9. Rolling: Rolling is a grab for attention as well as a scent marker
  10. Sitting in Boxes: One of the funniest behaviors goes to this one. Cats LOVE boxes. Small spaces. You know you’ve seen photos all over the internet of cats in boxes. What’s really up with that? Confined spaces are safe, warm, and protected on all sides. Great for sleeping, but also hunting or hiding. Cats are natural hunters. A cardboard box offers a place to sit and wait quietly with no opportunity to be snuck up on. No surprises. A quiet place for careful observance. Additionally when a cat is nervous, they often like to hide from view. Bingo. Cardboard box. If you want an in depth study on cats and boxes, Purina has a great article for that purpose.

 

This list barely scratches the surfaces of cat behaviors, but it’s a great start for new cat owners and those interested in feline behavior. If you’re still have trouble understanding your cat, ask a fellow cat owner or your local vet. If you need some quick advice, Purina or American Kennel Club is a great place to start. If all else fails, pick up a cardboard box from the store or garage and enjoy the entertainment.

 

8 Tips For Keeping Your Aging Dog Healthy

8 Tips For Keeping Your Aging Dog Healthy

As dogs age, they need a little extra love and care. Older canines often suffer from a variety or health issues at some point or another; arthritis or hip dysplasia are quite common. In order to keep your dog healthy, it’s best to start a specific age-appropriate diet and exercise regiment. Even if your old girl is slowing down, she can still have a happy, fulfilling life.

Instead of waiting until last minute to check for health problems, get a head start by considering your dog’s potential health issues in the future. Many breeds suffer from the same health problems as they age. For example, golden retrievers and German shepherds suffer from hip dysplasia. If you can pinpoint possible ailments, you can be aware of those issues earlier on to make health adjustments and tuned exercises specifically for your dog.

Here are 8 tips for keeping your aging canine fit and healthy.

  1. Go on 10 to 15 minute walks. All dogs need exercise, big and small, young and old. Although an older dog will be much slower paced, they still need the activity to keep their joints moving. Because older dogs commonly have arthritis or physical limitations, it is best to start small with 10 minutes and go up to 15 minutes at a time. If you notice your dog is slowing down or heavily panting during the walk, cut it short.
  2. Take your dog swimming. Swimming is a great exercise for water-lovers. It’s also a great activity that eases pain and exercises joints. The benefits go on: it’s relaxing and comfortable for aging dogs. Just like walking, allow for short periods of time.
  3. Encourage indoor stair-stepping. Many homes have stairs. If your dog is still able, walk them up and down the stairs for a few rounds. If they need some encouragement, place treats at the top of the stairs vice versa. Easy indoor exercise!
  4. Buy dog food with DHA and EPA. For dogs with arthritis and joint pain, fatty acids are beneficial. Glucosamine and chondroitin are great for these issues.
  5. Brush your dog’s teeth. Same as humans, plaque buildup, gum disease, and tooth decay are common problems for dogs with bad teeth. The simple act of teeth brushing can improve teeth health immensely. Dental care bones and toys can help with teeth cleanliness as well.
  6. Add fiber to their diet. Constipation is something older dogs face. Make sure to encourage healthy bowels with added fruits, vegetables, and wheat fibers. Green beans, broccoli, bananas, and apples are great sources of fiber.
  7. Play simple games. To keep your pooch active, try some simple games for fun. For example, hide treats and let your dog find them, play soft tug-of-war, or fetch. For the older dog with mobility issues, throw the object only a few feet away – just enough to get your dog moving.
  8. Get the vet’s opinion. As always, check with your vet for the best health plan for your dog. They are professionals and know what’s best for your aging pup. They will give you specific exercises and diet plans. If you notice any health changes, call the vet as soon as possible.

To ensure a long and happy life for your best bud, use these tips to keep your dog in tip-top shape. Simple exercises, brain work, and overall hygiene will be sure to keep your dog on its toes. Remember to have fun creating a health plan and enjoy the extra time with your pooch. A happy dog makes for a happy home.

5 Tips for Socializing Your Dog

5 Tips for Socializing Your Dog

Rescuing or adopting a dog is one of the most kind-hearted things you can do, but it doesn’t come without its trials. You don’t know what that dog has been through. Abuse or neglect? You are bringing an animal into your home that has already had another owner, whether good or bad. Obviously Rocky and Snow are perfect in every way, goober smile, wide eyes, and large personality. You might be one of the lucky ones and end up with a perfectly house-trained and well-behaved pupper, but that isn’t the case for everyone. Dogs will often react in new situations, especially if there are already other dogs in the household, or just on daily walks. There are two ends of the spectrum: aggression and avoidance. Here are a few quick tips for socializing your new family member and giving them the best chance they have at a happy, adjusted life. Signs of Discomfort If you are having trouble reading your dog’s behavior, these are a few obvious signs of anxiety and aggression.

● Panting
● Barking
● Pacing
● Cowering
● Tail between legs
● Yawning
● Growling
● Teeth Baring
● Biting

Tips and Tricks

Be Positive Consistently-

Positive reinforcement is essential when teaching anyone to learn, and the same goes for dogs, especially rescues. They need all of the love and support they can get as they are coming into a new, unfamiliar environment. Treats, positive commands, and lots of attention are great ways to encourage your dog. When interacting with multiple dogs, make sure you are consistently positive and happy. Your behavior will reflect on theirs. Whenever you see positive interactions between your pups, bring in all of the rewards! The trick is to catch those good moments and be ready with treats. Just make sure to present the reward right after the interaction, not during. It might cause unnecessary quarreling over food.

Soothe Your Dog-

When bringing an unstable dog into your home, remember to keep calm. Always, always, always. Put forth your best soothing voice and calm your dog during fearful situations or stressful encounters. It is important not to raise your voice as that could become more of a trigger for your already stressed dog. Yelling will only give Rocky bad memories for these situations, and he will remember that for the next time. You don’t want to create a pattern of negativity. Even when Rocky interacts badly with your other dogs, don’t overreact. Instead, be calm and create space between the dogs.

Start with Small Experiences-

With a rescue, you can’t just jump into everything off the bat. New dogs take time to adjust. Start small with each new experience in and out of the home. As you work with your rescue and your previous dogs, make a point to keep interactions short and sweet. Small periods of interaction work well because it doesn’t allow time for bad behavior. Repeat these small, positive interactions and you will eventually be able to progress as their interactions continue in a good manner. Protip: If you have more than one previous dog, keep interactions separate between all dogs for a good amount of time. You don’t want the other two dogs to gang up on the new one. This way, they are all separate interactions. As you have more successes, you can start bringing them together.

Even when starting small, it is important to expose your dog to a good amount of new things and experiences. This way, they will be prepared for all situations. Short walks around the block, time in the backyard, playing with friends and family, etc. Make sure to be patient and to assess your dog’s behavior and progress at all times.

Put on Music-

You know how music is great for babies? Yes, it’s a wonderful tool for dogs as well. It can be a calming factor in a dog’s life. While you are gone, the calming noise of music will create a filler for absent noise. Classical music can be a great start and is synonymous with relaxation.

According to Reader’s Digest, researchers found that dogs relaxed when introduced to reggae music and soft rock. Either way, try soothing music for your rescue.

Get Professional Help-

If you are still having trouble with your rescue, it is best to call in a professional. The most experienced trainer will be able to help your dog adjust to new environments and employ good techniques for future behavior. There is always help available. Don’t worry. You will get your beloved pup back on track in no time!

How Long Can You Leave Your Dog Alone?

How Long Can You Leave Your Dog Alone?

You get up in the morning and out comes Cooper, rushing down the hallway, wiggling his way over to you. You’re a little groggy, but boy, does that big slobbery smile cheer you up in an instant. He follows you around the house as you get ready for the day, wagging his tail as he goes, happy to shadow his master. It’s time; work is calling and you head out the door on the way to the office, but not before you take one last glance back at Cooper. He’s standing on the windowsill, giving you a longing gaze in hopes that you’ll return promptly, his eyes as big as the moon. That’s when it hits you: the guilt. The guilt of leaving your precious fur child alone while you work during the day. You don’t need to dwell on those feelings all too much; dogs can be on their own for a given amount of time. So, how long can you actually leave your dog alone? The answers are all here for you, but it does depend on certain factors. Let’s jump in!

As a general rule, dogs can be on their lonesome for four to six hours a day; this goes for dogs aged from 4 months old to a year and onward. However, the younger the dog, the less time they can be left by themselves. Puppies, for example, need more frequent windows to empty their bladders. At 8 to 10 weeks, hour breaks are necessary for their tiny organs. At 4 months, four hours will do. Depending on the age of your pup, you can find out how long they can be left alone; here is a great infographic for more details. One the other hand, senior dogs might need to be let out as often as puppies. With a variety of health problems, every two to six hours could be necessary. It depends on your dog, but just be watchful of their habits. You’ll pick it up.

When you leave your dog alone during the day, make sure to give your pup things to do or play with him beforehand. A bored dog makes for mischief! You might come home to ripped trash bags, chewed furniture, and general messes. This is more common with younger dogs, but dogs with separation anxiety might also do the same. One of the first things you can do to help your dog is to tire him out before you leave. Take Cooper on a long walk to get all of his energy out; he will spend a good chunk of the day resting after an exercise. Chew toys, bones, and balls are great options to keep your pup occupied. Instead of chewing up your new couch, they will hopefully opt for a toy.

If you are going to be gone longer than four to six hours, make sure you have a plan in place. Maybe your partner, roommate, or neighbor can let your dog out for you. Make sure this is a person your trust as you want to keep your best bud in the hands of someone kind and loving to animals. There are also great options for dog-sitter services like, Barking Trails and apps dedicated to this purpose. Experienced dog-lovers will cater to your pet’s needs at all hours, and even take them on walks if desired.

5 Tips Before Getting A Puppy

5 Tips Before Getting A Puppy

Do you want to come home to a lovable fluff muffin every day? Someone who will be excited every single time you walk through the door? Honestly, who wouldn’t? A puppy is one of the sweetest, most adorable additions to any family. Before you step into the world of puppydom, let’s go over a few quick tips and guidelines.

Allergies

Number one tip before getting any kind of new pet: do you have allergies? It is best to stay away from getting a new puppy if you have dog allergies, especially if they are severe. Some allergies are manageable with medications. The good thing is that there are certain breeds that are hypoallergenic.

Available Space

Unfortunately puppies don’t stay small forever ― unless you get a small dog ― and you will need to be aware of the space needed for a pet. Puppies need lots of room to romp around and play, especially bigger dogs like Great Danes. If you don’t have the space available, but still have the desire for a puppy, that’s okay! Talking your pup on lots of walks and play dates works too. Just remember to make time for bathroom breaks throughout the day.
Many owners choose to crate their dogs during work hours. It is a great way to avoid mess.

Work Schedule

New puppies need constant attention just like babies. Is your work schedule flexible to visit your puppy throughout the day, or bring it to work? If not, maybe a friend or partner can help with caring for your puppy.

Breed Choice

One of the most fun things about getting a new puppy is deciding on a dog breed. Before you decide, take into consideration work schedule, ability to exercise, desired attention level, etc. Each breed has specific temperaments and qualities. If you need help choosing, American Kennel Club has a wonderful online quiz for you.

Adoption

If you aren’t looking for a purebred puppy, animal shelters are great places to find pets who need loving homes. Purebreds are more rare, but mixed breeds can be some of the absolute cutest and spunkiest pups. Give that precious fur-ball the home it deserves.