Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cat Proof Your Home

Most cat owners are not aware that their home may be dangerous to their furry feline. Cats are naturally curious and playful, so it is important to keep your cats safe from potentially hazardous situations.

There are other household items that may be dangerous to your cat. Certain foods, such as chocolate and coffee can cause gastrointestinal problems or even death if swallowed in large amounts. Cats are also very notorious for searching through garbage cans, where bacteria thrives. Garbage cans should be stowed away in an area that is out of reach for your cats.

Certain plants, such as aloe, baby's breath, poinsettia, and many others can be potentially fatal to your cat. For a full list of dangerous plants that are toxic to your cat, go to ASPCA's website by clicking here.

It is also very important to never give human medicine to your pet unless directed to by a veterinarian. Some human medicine can be very dangerous to your cat and even cause death. Flea treatments that are intended only for dogs can also be dangerous. Only use flea treatments that are directed for cat use only. Flea treatments are formulated for specified animals and should not be used other than its intended purpose. You can check out our line of cat flea treatments by going here.

Other commonly household items that can be dangerous to your cat include potpourri, coin money, mothballs, fabric softener sheets, batteries, and automatic dish detergents.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Give Your Dog Variety!

It is important for an owner to supply their puppy and dog with toys made from different types of materials for two main reasons. One is that each material will help keep the teeth and gums clean in different ways so that the pet's mouth stays healthier. Second, is that dogs like to chew things made of different materials, otherwise they can get bored chewing the same thing over and over. Think of it like this, when you were a small child, you did not want to play with the same toy over and over. You wanted a variety of toys to play with and dogs and puppies need the same thing. By providing your pet with various materials, owners may find thei pet prefers certain materials over others and therefore should buy toys that the puppy or dog likes best.

We have a variety of dog toys available for your pet. Check them out by clicking here

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Halloween Pet Costume Contest

Get ready for a bark-tacular time! Bring your howlin' hounds and scaredy cats to Pet Depot on October 24th and enter them in the 1st Annual Pet Costume Contest!

Each store winner will receive a 4-5 lb. bag of Science Diet Dog or Cat Food and a $20 Pet Depot Gift Card!

Pets will be judged on creativity, originality, attention to detail, and cuteness.

Arrive early! Registration begins at 12 pm.

No purchase necessary. Pets must be on a leash or in a carrier. Contestants can enter to win at one store location only.

Store Locations - Muscle Shoals, AL Guntersville, AL Jasper, AL Cullman, AL Florence, AL Athens, AL

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

What's up, Doc?

There are many people that prefer raising rabbits instead of dogs or cats. This is mainly because some busy people may not be have the time to train a cat or dog. Rabbits offer the flexibility of busy pet owners to leave them safely at home while they are gone. They are very affectionate animals and make great companions. Although, they are naturally social animals, they do fine on their own as well. Two or more rabbits in a cage is often to optimal choice, as they tend to bond naturally with each other. But be sure you know the sex of the rabbits if you do not want them to reproduce!

Rabbits life expectancy is around 10-12 years. To keep your rabbit healthy, be sure to feed it a vegetarian diet that does not have a lot of calories. Foods such as grass, leaves, cabbage and spinach as a good choice for your bunny. These foods tend to be very low in calories, but also high in fiber.

Unfortunately, dental problems are one of the main causes that rabbits tend to develop health issues. So, it is important to make sure you are feeding your rabbit the nutrients it needs. Rabbits' teeth grow at a constant rate, and therefore must rely on calcium as a required nutrient. When a rabbit's diet lacks calcium, it will take the calcium from it's bones, much like how our bodies work. Since the bunny is not receiving the nutrients from the a food source, this will cause the rabbit's teeth to decay and can cause many spinal and bone problems. So, it is important to feed your rabbit a healthy, low-calorie and well-balanced diet.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Stop your dog from jumping up or barking

There are two ways to stop a puppy from jumping up or barking. The first, for jumping up, is to turn away and completely ignore the puppy until it stops, then turn around and praise the puppy. If it starts to jump up again, turn away again, until the puppy stops. Never give a puppy any attention, good or bad, while it is jumping up or that may make them do it more. But if the praise is given every time the puppy stops, it will soon get the idea that it won't get praised and patted until it stays on all four feet. This procedure will also work for older puppies and dogs that have gotten into this bad habit, as long as everyone does it that greets the dog. If a puppy is barking and gets scolded, it may consider this good as it gives them the attention they may be craving which may have started them barking to begin with. An owner can ignore the puppy when it is barking, and then praise it, and even give it a treat, when it stops. Again, the idea is that the puppy gets positive reinforcement for not doing the bad behavior.

One other technique to stop jumping up or barking is to actually teach the puppy to jump up or bark on command. Basically, if the puppy is coming toward you and you know it is going to jump up, be sure to say the command "Jump up" before the puppy does and give it a small treat. Then back up and say the command again and give it a treat again. Go through this a few times and then stop. If the puppy tries to jump up when not commanded, turn away and ignore the puppy. until it stops. Do this training two to three times a day and the puppy will soon understand that if it is not commanded to "Jump up", it does not get rewarded, so why jump up? Once the puppy understands this, it will not jump up unless commanded to do so. This is also true with barking or any other bad habits, to teach the puppy to do it on command so then the puppy won't do it otherwise. It takes patience but to stay very consistent and you will be rewarded with a well-trained dog.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Obesity in Pets

Obesity is becoming a major problem among pets. This is mostly caused from pet owners allowing their pets to eat table scraps. Of course, that is not the only cause. Being overweight is bad for dogs and cats because they can get the same kinds of health problems as an overweight person can, such as diabetes, liver problems, and joint pain. The best way to help a pet lose weight is by using a premium weight-control diet and to follow the directions for how much to feed. An owner should also cut down or completely cut out all treats and increase the pet's exercise. A customer should be aware of some so-called diet pet foods that use fiber as a filler. This will cause a large increase in fecal matter, therefore the pet has to go out more, and the poor digestibility of the food may make it impossible for the pet to get all of its nutritional needs met. Premium foods simply lower the amount of calories in the food so an owner can still fill the bowl but not cause excessive stools or loss in nutritional value. Although it is somewhat easy to tell if your pet is overweight or not, it is best to check with your vet to see if your cat or dog needs to be put on a diet.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Friday, June 19, 2009

Brushing Your Pet's Teeth is Important!

Keeping your pet's teeth clean is important. Most people are not aware that brushing your pet's teeth every day is essential. Keeping the teeth clean by brushing is good not only for the teeth and gums, but also for a pet's overall health as the bacteria from gum disease can damage heart, valves or kidneys over time. Owners not only avoid health problems by brushing their pet's teeth regularly, but delay having to have their pet's teeth cleaned at the vet, which can be a costly procedure. In fact, at my vet's office, one teeth cleaning costs $75!

It is important to brush your pet's teeth as often as possible, preferably every day. However, this is not always possible, so in the event that you are not able to brush your pet's teeth, it is important to give your pets treats or toys that will help prevent tartar buildup or plaque.

Human toothpaste should never be used on your pet, as it is not meant to be swallowed like pet toothpaste. Pet toothpaste comes in yummy flavors like malt, chicken, or beef that most animals will love. Owners can start brushing a pet's teeth at any time, but the younger the pet is, the easier it may be to get him used to daily brushings.

The best way to start brushing a pet's teeth is to start out slowly, just let the animal lick the flavored pet toothpaste off the brush for the first 2 days, then brush for a few seconds for the next 2 days or so, and then go longer. Brush only the outside surfaces, as the pet's tongue keeps the inner surfaces fairly clean. If the owner doesn't push it on their pet, the animal will actually like having its teeth brushed!

We have a variety of pet toothpaste and pet toothbrushes! Check them out by clicking here!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Why Premium Food is Better for Your Dog

Premium dog food such as Science Diet, Nutro Natural Choice, and Diamond Taste of the Wild are highly recommended when feeding your pet. The difference between premium dog foods and grocery store foods are that premium foods have more nutritious ingredients and are more concentrated. Three advantages of feeding a premium food can include the pet eating less so the bag lasts longer and is therefore a better value pet pound than cheaper brands. There will be fewer stools that the owner will have to clean up, and the stool will be much less smelly. Better ingredients mean the pet's coat won't have that "pet smell" and will be stronger, shinier, and will shed less. Note that the skin is the largest organ of the pet's body, but it is the last to receive nutrition as the heart, liver, lungs and other organs will always receive nutrition first, with the skin receiving the leftovers. If a poor quality food is fed, there are usually not enough nutrients left for the skin and coat, so this may be a reason some pets have a dull coat and dry skin.

With premium foods, the pet's long-term health will also be better. Look at it this way, eating premium foods is like eating hamburgers made from high-quality, low fat beef. Eating a cheaper grocery dog/cat food is by comparison, like eating at a fast food place. A person who ate fast food every day would gain more weight and be in worse health compared to the person who ate the low fat, higher quality hamburgers. With premium foods, you may not see the benefits immediately, but over time it will make a considerable difference in the pet's health and well-being. And doesn't your dog deserve the absolute best?

Monday, May 18, 2009

Housebreak Your Pet

If you are trying to potty train your pet, crate training is the best way to housebreak and train any puppy. Canines do not like to defecate or urinate in the place where they sleep. Therefore, with some precautions, keeping a puppy in a crate during the day and night are good for both the owner and the puppy. Puppies take naturally to crates as wild dogs do to their dens. A crate therefore becomes the puppy's den, a place of security, and the owner should not think of it as a "cage".

When crate training your pet, be sure to keep the crate away from any noisy places in the house. It should be big enough for the puppy to turn around and lie down. If it is a faster growing breed, then it would be best to start out with a bigger sized crate and then put a barrier up at first to make it smaller or else the puppy will go to the bathroom at one end and sleep at the other, thus ruining the training.

After a crate is picked out, you will need to decide on a crate training schedule. Most small puppies can only hold it in for 3-4 hours or so before it must go to the bathroom. Be sure the puppy has a chance to go out 20-30 minutes after it eats and drinks in the morning before it goes in the crate. As the puppy gets older, the longer the puppy will be able to hold it in. As night, the puppy again should be let out before it goes to bed. This will keep your pet in routine and your puppy will become accustomed to the scheduling of when it gets to go out.

Once the puppy knows the crate as its den, it will love that place and happily go inside any time the owner goes out. When crate training, it is important to remember the following:
1) No food or water in the crate
2) The younger you start, the better; older puppies not crate-trained will have a difficult time accepting confinement and may even break the cage.
3) Never send a puppy to the crate as punishment as that will defeat the purpose of crate training.
4) Always remove the collar before putting the puppy in the crate otherwise it could get stuck on a part of the cage and choke itself.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Hairball Remedy

If you own a cat, then you have more than likely experienced the unpleasant nature of hairballs. If a cat is throwing up food, coughing, or spitting up hair, hairballs may be the cause. Cats lick themselves constantly, and therefore they swallow a lot of hair. Hair is very hard to digest and stays in the stomach, forming what we call hairballs. The Natural Defense Hairball Remedy can help eliminate hairballs in cats. Most cats will readily eat this product, but if not, a dab can be placed on the cat's food or nose and the cat will most likely lick it off. The hairball remedy will dissolve the hair allowing it to pass through the digestive system. If vomiting or hacking continues, consult your veterinarian. There are also treats or cat food available that can also assist your cat in eliminating hairballs.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Wild Bird Questions: Hummingbirds

What feeders work the best to attract hummingbirds? What should be placed in these feeders? What food should be avoided? How often should the hummingbird food be changed?
Feeders that work to attract hummingbirds the best are those that are made with lots of red colored parts, as hummingbirds associate the color red with their natural food, nectar, that they get from flowers. So, the brighter red a feeder is, the better it will work at attracting hummingbirds.

Sugar water, whether sold as hummingbird nectar or made at home should be placed in these feeders. The advantage of the prepackaged hummingbird nectar is that it will, in many cases, include other ingredients, such as vitamins, to give a more balanced diet than just plain sugar water would.

The food that should be avoided in hummingbird feeders are the mixtures that have been colored red. Although the color attracts the hummingbirds, it also means that the red dye must be broke down constantly by the birds internal organs which can cause damage over time. It is best to use a clear solution and have the feeder itself be red. Hummingbird food should be changed at least every other day in cooler weather and everyday in hot weather or the food will go bad. Hummingbirds will not go to feeders if the food is not fresh.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Ear Mites - What are they & What you can do about them

Ear mites are small parasites that can't be seen with the naked eye. However, they usually cause a coffee colored crud in the ear and are very itchy to the pet. Ear mites are extremely contagious, so if you have a pet with ear mites, it is best to keep it away from your other pets. This includes cats, dogs, hamsters, ferrets, rabbits, gerbils, etc. Most pets will scratch their ears or shake their head very frequently if they have ear mites. Unfortunately, ear mites can also live on other parts of the body on your pet as well.
If you suspect your pet has ear mites, it is best to first clean your pet's ears with a pet ear cleaner. There are many common pet cleaners that help aid in killing the mites. Be sure to choose a cleaner with an insectidide or else it will not kill the mites. It is generally a good idea to use to cleaner for at least 4 weeks, as this is the usual life cycle of an ear mite. Make sure you wash your pet in a flea & tick shampoo, especially the feet and tail, as this is where most ear mites reside when not in the ear. Although ear mites are contagious to other pets, humans do not have to worry about getting these bugs on them. Be sure to check with your vet if you are not sure if your pet has ear mites.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sago Palm Plant- Dangerous or Fatal to pets!

Certain plants can be very dangerous to many pets. For example, the poinsettia plant that you usually see during Christmas time can cause pets to have an upset stomach or gastrointestinal problems. However, there are also many other plants that can be deadly to pets. The Sago Palm plant is a popular house plant with dark leaves and a hairy trunk and is extremely dangerous to pets. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, depression, seizures and liver failure, so be sure to keep your pets away from this plant. Many pet owners are not aware of certain plants that can cause their pets to be sick, so it is extremely important to keep all plants away from pets until you are sure if the plant is safe or not. It is always a good idea to check with your veterinarian to see which plants are harmful to your pets.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Pet Question of the Day

Question: Can an owner use a human shampoo on a dog or cat? Why or why not?

Answer: No. Human shampoos should not be used on pets. Human shampoos have a different pH and contain substances that can cause skin irritations or dry out the pet's skin. Use a pet shampoo, and preferably use a shampoo made for that specific pet, i.e. use cat shampoo on a cat.

We have a variety of pet shampoos here. Our Crazy Pet product collection comes in various great smelling, long-lasting scents! We also carry flea and tick shampoos, as well as shampoos for dogs with dry skin.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Featured Product: Wahl Chromado Cordless Pet Clipper

Introducing the easy way to groom your pet! The Wahl Chromado takes the hassle out of grooming your pet. With its sleek, innovative design, the Wahl Chromado pet clipper has 5 adjustable sized blades to give you control over the length of your pet's hair. The battery LED indicator on the front of the clipper shows you when you are low on battery power.
Also, check out our New Items section, where we've added dog & cat beds, dog shampoos & more! We add new items frequently, so be sure to check back with us often!

Monday, February 2, 2009

February is National Pet Dental Health Month!

Did you know that an astounding 80% of pets experience some type of oral disease by the age of three? Sad, but true. This is because most pet owners don't take the time to care for their pet's teeth like they should. Or, it could just be because pet owners are not aware that their pet's teeth need just as much attention as their own. However, it IS important to give your pet daily brushings and yearly dental check ups. Poor dental health can lead to serious ailments such as kidney, heart, and liver disease.

We offer dental products on our website specially formulated for your pets. It is important not to use a human toothbrush on your pets, as the bristles can do damage to the gums. Human toothpaste is also not good for your pet, as many human toothpastes make pets sick. Along with daily brushings, there are also many pet products that can aid in the prevention of tartar build up. Products such as dental chews/bones, rawhide, and also, as previously stated, Greenies. The greenies are an excellent way to keep your pet's teeth healthy. The texture of the greenies help to reduce plaque, while also massaging your pet's gums. Healthy gums lead to healthy teeth.

Since February is Pet Dental Month, many veterinarians are offering discounts or coupons for pet dental care. So taking care of your pet doesn't have to put a big dent in your wallet. Check with your local vet and see if they are giving any specials this month for pet dental checkups.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Knowing how much to feed your cat

Did you know that your cat's stomach is only about the size of a quarter? Of course, this is before it is filled with food and expands. Many experts have argued about what is the proper amount to feed your cat. You want to be sure not to overfeed. Although a few tablespoons of food may be enough for your cat, some people say that you need to feed your cat more. For about an average sized cat, a half of a 12 ounce can should be enough. However, you don’t necessarily need to measure out how much, as most cats will only eat until they are satisfied. Feeding your cat twice a day is plenty. You can allow your cat about 15-20 minutes to eat. Start by scooping out a few tablespoons, and if she devours that, add small amounts of food until she is full.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Tip of the Day

It is best to keep your pets indoor during the cold winter months. However, if this is not possible, it is important to keep them safe. Since the outside temperatures are dropping, be sure to replace any metal water dishes with plastic ones. Besides the water having a higher risk of coming frozen, your pet's tongue can stick to the metal causing your pet some agony.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Featured Product: Pedi-Paws Nail Trimmer

For most pet owners, pet nail trimming is not something to look forward to. Most people are scared to trim their pet's nails with traditional nail cutters because they fear they may cut too close to the quick. Especially if you have a pet with black nails, it is almost impossible to know exactly where to cut. Nail trimming is not something most pets enjoy, judging by how most animals react to nail cutting. However, with the Pedi-Paws nail trimmer, it safely and gently trims your pet's nails without the mess. I have a small Dachshund that I used this on, and it worked great. It gave my pet a smooth finish instead of a jagged edge that other nail clippers give. Of course, not all pets will welcome this nail trimmer with open paws. It may take some coercing before your pet will let you trim his nails. I would highly recommend this system to any pet lover! It works on cats too!

Click here to Order: Pedi-Paws