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Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Ways to Reduce Your Pet's Exposure to Harmful Chemicals

5 Ways to Reduce Your Pet’s Exposure to Harmful Chemicals

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Ways to Reduce Your Pet's Exposure to Harmful Chemicals


As responsible pet parents, we try to give our animals the best lives possible. We feed them awesome food, we entertain them with outdoor activities, treats and toys, and we protect them from harmful annoyances like fleas and ticks. But, there’s one arena that many pet parents don’t consider when it comes to their pet care routine and it’s arguably the most impactful: Household chemicals.

Many common items we consider safe—from air fresheners to plastic pet toys—actually contain toxins that can poison our cats and dogs, resulting in illness, sometimes even death. Thankfully, by being just a little more conscious, we can help make our pet’s environments safer and much less toxic. Here are 5 ways to reduce your pet’s exposure to harmful chemicals.

 

Say No to Artificial Fragrances

Artificial fragrances—air fresheners, candles and other synthetically scented products—often contain chemicals that are unsafe for your pets, including heavy metals, phthalates, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) like ethanol and formaldehyde.

Devastating health effects associated with consistent and long term exposure to these chemicals include heart disease, respiratory problems, birth defects, reproductive complications, even cancer.

But how common are these chemicals? Sadly, very. In a first-of-its-kind study, the EWG (Environmental Working Group) published the Polluted Pets report in 2008 to give the public a better understanding of the chemicals affecting our pets’ health. Their research found that American pets are riddled with phthalates, among other toxic chemicals found in artificial fragrances. Specifically, they discovered that dogs were contaminated with traces of phthalates at levels up to 4.5 times higher than humans; cats were contaminated at levels higher than in any of the over 5,500 people tested by the CDC.

Thankfully, from essential oils to natural air fresheners, there are numerous non-toxic and naturally sourced alternatives to artificial deodorizers and synthetic air fresheners.

 

Switch Out Your Household Cleaners

Indoor air pollution affects more than just our homes’ air quality, it impacts our pets’ health and lifespans, too. Many traditional household cleaners contain bleach, formaldehyde, ammonia, chlorine and other toxic ingredients and synthetic fragrances that fill our home with noxious contaminants. Through inhalation, incidental ingestion, and absorption from the floor, our pets are commonly exposed to these chemicals, and the risks can be dire: Cancer, anemia, organ damage and more have all been linked to these toxins.

To protect your pets from potentially harmful exposure, carefully read cleaner labels and consider switching to non-toxic alternatives the next time you go shopping.

 

Choose Non-Toxic Flea & Tick Control

Pills, collars, sprays—in whatever form, traditional flea and tick solutions can pose a significant health risk to not only your pets, but also you and your family. Common ingredients in these products, such as organophosphates, carbamates, and pyrethroids, have been linked with countless health complications in both animals and humans. Organ damage, seizures, cancer, nervous system damage, and death in pets have all been associated with toxic flea and tick repellents.

Frighteningly, it’s been shown that synthetic flea and tick products can persist on our pets’ fur for weeks after initial application. Research has revealed that concentrations of these remaining pesticide residues pose a risk of cancer and neurological damage to children “up to 1,000 times higher than the EPA’s acceptable levels.”

To limit your pet and family’s exposure to these potentially life altering ingredients, consider switching from conventional flea and tick prevention products to non-toxic solutions without harsh chemicals.

 

Ditch the Plastic Toys

We mentioned above that a family of toxic chemicals called phthalates are typically present in artificial fragrances. Another common use for Phthalates is to help make plastic products more flexible. Unfortunately, this includes our pets’ toys.

Given that these items all but live in our pet’s mouths, the idea that they contain possibly life changing chemicals is just a little more than unsettling. (If you recall, the aforementioned Polluted Pets Report study found that dogs were contaminated with phthalates at levels up to 4.5 times higher than humans, and cats were contaminated at levels higher than in any of the humans the CDC tested.)

In addition to limiting household fragrances to natural sources, avoiding plastic pet toys is essential to protecting your cat or dog from the effects of phthalate poisoning.  

 

Avoid Synthetic Lawn Products

Traditional, chemical-based lawn care products present a unique danger to your pet’s overall health. Think about it: They spend considerable time outside, playing and lying in your lawn, and sometimes even eating its grass. Given the harmful chemicals hidden in many fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides, sometimes a simple paw-lick is all it takes to negatively impact their health.

To start, conventional fertilizers often contain a noxious mix of phosphorus, nitrogen and other chemicals that at the right dose can be outfight fatal to pets, especially if ingested. The more pressing threat, however, is traditional outdoor pesticides. Alarmingly, several types of pet cancers are strongly linked with these products. One study, for example, found that dogs exposed to pesticides commonly used by lawn care services had a 70% higher risk of fatal canine malignant lymphoma.

Research published in the journal Science of the Total Environment discovered that “exposure to herbicide-treated lawns has been associated with significantly higher bladder cancer risk in dogs.” Another scary chemical to look out for is allethrin. This pesticide is found in many outdoor products used to treat flying pests like mosquitoes, and it’s been linked with increased risk of liver cancer in dogs. Considering cats absorb more chemicals than dogs due to their grooming habits and more delicate digestive systems, cat parents need to be extra careful around allethrin as well.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide Blog Post Image, 4 ways to protect you and your pets from bug bites

4 Quick Tips to Protect You and Your Pets from Bug Bites

Cedarcide Blog Post Image, 4 ways to protect you and your pets from bug bites

Spring is here and summer is just around the corner—which means bugs and bug bites are becoming increasingly more common. Seasonal vacations, backyard partying, and outdoor fun like hiking and camping all expose you, your family and pets to potentially harmful pests like mosquitoes, ticks, chiggers, ants, and fleas. Here are 4 tips to help you and your pets enjoy the warm weather without having to worry about troublesome bug bites.

 

Use an Essential Oil Based Repellent

Beaches, road trips, and adventure travel can mean countless bug bites for you and your family. Using a non-toxic repellent like Cedarcide Original does more than prevent these potentially harmful bites, it also ensures you don’t bring any of those nasty bugs back home.

 

Protect Your Pet Without Harsh Chemicals

Dog parks, walks, and backyards are often littered with unseen fleas, mites, ticks, and mosquitoes—which can spread deadly heartworms and cause other potentially life-threatening complications. Applying a pet-safe bug repellent before these activities is essential to your dog or cat’s protection this spring and summer.

 

 

Avoid Harmful Tick and Mosquito Bites with Extra-Strength Protection

For deep woods activities like hiking and camping, avoiding tick and mosquito bites can be a serious health concern. For extended stays in known flea and tick infested areas, sometimes a little extra protection is necessary. That’s why we formulated our extra strength formula Tickshield—it has twice the active ingredient (cedarwood oil) and is perfect for outdoorsmen and animals over 20 lbs.

For optimal protection, apply before and after outdoor activities in tall grass to avoid bites and prevent accidentally bringing bugs back into your vehicle, home, or yard.

 

Apply Monthly Yard Treatments During Warmer Months

Enjoying time outside—from BBQs and warm nights on the porch, to long walks and camping—is one of the absolute best things about summer and spring. The pests that often show up to spoil these fun activities—like ants, mosquitoes, chiggers, fleas and ticks—are the absolute worst.

Applying a non-toxic repellent like Cedarcide Original to family and pets can make grilling out, pool parties, and other backyard activities bite-free. A monthly yard treatment like Yardsafe or PCO Choice will control active bug populations and help repel additional pests from moving into your lawn and eventually your home.


Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

5 Ways to Use Our New Pet+Bedding+Home Spray!

Did you know traditional household air fresheners and scented candles can fill your home with harmful toxins, threatening the health of your family and pets? Cedarcide Pet+Bedding+Home is naturally sourced and free of synthetic fragrances and other harsh ingredients. Here are 5 ways to use our new deodorizer and air freshener alternative! 


Pets and Pet Bedding
Cedarcide Blog Post Image, Pet and Pet Bedding

Face it: Our cute pups and their bedding don’t always smell so cute. Pet+Bedding+Home’s natural scents are a quick and easy way to combat canine odors between baths.

 

Alternative to Artificial Air FreshenersCedarcide Blog Post Image, Air Freshener Alternative

Deodorize bathrooms, trashcans, hampers, and living areas without resorting to chemical-based air fresheners.

 

Gear and Sports EquipmentCedarcide Blog Post Image, Gear and Sports Equipment

You know what’s worse than funky camping gear and sports equipment? Stinky, harmful chemicals. A few spritzes with Pet+Bedding+Home and you won’t have to worry about either.

 

Refresh Linens and FurnitureCedarcide Blog Post Image, Linens and Furniture

Harness the natural power of essential oils to keep furniture, blankets, and other linens smelling fresh every day. (For sensitive furnishings, test on a small area first.)

 

Deodorize Your VehicleCedarcide Blog Post Image, Deodorize Your Vehicle

Pet+Bedding+Home freshens without synthetic fragrances.Transform your car’s stuffy air by lightly spraying cloth seats and carpeting.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Essential Oil Safety Tips for Dogs

5 Essential Oil Safety Tips for Dogs

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Essential Oil Safety Tips for Dogs

Essential oils are becoming increasingly popular in the world of natural pet care. When used correctly, essential oils offer a chemical-free alternative to help address inflammation, infection, anxiety and countless other pet concerns. However, as with any remedy natural or not, when used incorrectly essential oils can do more harm than good. Check out the following tips to help your pup enjoy a smooth and safe introduction to the natural benefits of essential oils.

Always consult a veterinarian before incorporating essential oils into your pet care routine. Specifically, ask if your chosen essential oil is the right fit for your pup, how the oil can benefit them, as well as dosage and application advice. We do not suggest using essential oils on or around cats unless first approved through a veterinarian.

 

Not All Essential Oils Are Created Equal

As with any over-the-counter product, not all essential oils are created equal. When selecting a brand, it’s crucial to do your research, shop around, and explore all available options. Sadly, many essential oil companies sell products contaminated with impurities and other toxins that could be harmful to your pup. Only purchase from reputable and well-reviewed sources, preferably companies that have an extensive history of offering essential oils for therapeutic purposes (pet-friendly companies are even better). As a rule, look for essential oils marked “therapeutic grade” or “medical grade.” Avoid those marketed as “fragrance-grade,” as these are typically inferior in quality and often contain contaminants that could harm your pet.

 

Never Give Orally

Dogs should never be fed or allowed to ingest essential oils. Oral ingestion can lead to gastric distress, tissue damage, organ failure, and general toxicity among other scary side effects. Keep it simple and avoid all internal use when it comes to essential oils and pet care.

 

Always Dilute

Did you know on average essential oils are over 75 times more potent than their herbal counterparts? For example, it takes roughly 16 pounds of peppermint leaves to make a single ounce of peppermint essential oil! Given this, you can imagine why it’s important to dilute essential oils before using them around your pet. While the exact specs will vary depending on use, animal age, weight, and a number of other factors, we suggest aiming for approximately 3-6 drops of essential oil per 1 oz. of carrier oil.

 

Know Which Essential Oils to Avoid

In general, avoid using the following essential oils on or around your dog:

    • Citrus oils (like lemon and orange, for example)
    • Cinnamon
    • Pennyroyal
    • Ylang ylang
    • Tea tree
    • Pine
    • Sweet birch
    • Wintergreen
    • Thyme
    • Clove
    • Yarrow
    • Garlic
    • Anise

 

6 Reasons We Love Lemongrass Essential Oil

 

Watch For Signs of Sensitivity

Even when using the right essential oils in the correct manner your dog could still experience an adverse reaction to essential oil use. Knowing what to look for in the event of such a reaction can save you and your pup considerable stress and discomfort. Here are the common symptoms of essential oil irritation and poisoning:

    • Lethargy
    • Loss of balance
    • Loss of appetite
    • Vomiting
    • Diarrhea
    • Drooling
    • Muscle tremors
    • Pawing at the mouth or face
    • Rashes
    • Panting

 

To prevent essential oil overexposure, avoid application on or near sensitive areas—such as the eyes, ears, nose, mouth and genitals. Additionally, avoid use on very young, very old, pregnant, nursing, ill or weak pets. And again, consult a veterinarian before incorporating essential oils into your pet care routine.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Reasons You Should Microchip Your Dog

5 Reasons You Should Microchip Your Dog

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Reasons You Should Microchip Your Dog

 

Over 10 million pets are reported lost or stolen each year. Unfortunately, a large percentage of these animals never find their way back home. An inability to identify the pets’ owners is the leading cause. Statistically, microchipping is a pet parent’s best defense against losing their furry loved one forever. This simple implant of a rice-sized chip is strongly encouraged by vets, rescues and animal welfare organizations the world over. But why is microchipping your pup so essential? Here’s 5 Reasons You Should Microchip Your Dog.

 

Collars Aren’t Enough

With a name, address, and phone numbers, collars and tags are essential pet parenting tools. Unfortunately, collars can slip off and tags can become illegible with wear. Losing a pet—maybe forever—simply because a collar fell off is a nightmare no dog owner should have to face. Microchips on the other hand cannot be removed from a pet and in most cases last forever. We’re not saying toss out the collars and tags (please don’t!), we just strongly suggest investing in a microchip, too!

 

It Proves Ownership

Tags and collars don’t always fall off—sometimes they’re pulled off by someone trying to steal your pet. Having your pup microchipped is a quick and easy way to verify ownership in the event of a mishap.
 

 

It Could Save Your Dog’s Life

Did you know that 1 in 3 dogs get lost during their lifetime? Sadly, many of these pups never find their way back home and are therefore euthanized. Health conditions can further complicate the issue, as pets can die if they don’t receive necessary medication or care shortly after getting lost. Compared to traditional collars, microchips substantially increase the chances you’ll recover your pup in the event they become lost. Considering microchipped dogs are returned 2.5 times more often than their un-chipped counterparts, microchipping might very well save your pooch’s life.

 

Microchips Aren’t Just for Safety Anymore

Like all technology, microchips are getting smarter and more useful every year. In addition to helping recover lost pets, microchips can now communicate with smart pet devices like doggy doors, notify you the moment your pet becomes lost through alerting services, and provide additional support for pet owners who regularly travel with their dogs. Cool, huh?
 

 

They’re a One-and-Done Solution

Once installed, microchips nearly always last the entire life of your pet. Unlike collars and tags, you’ll never have to worry about a chip wearing out and endangering the safety and security of your pooch. However, chips should be checked at least once a year by your vet to ensure they’re working properly. Make sure to update your chip registration any time your contact info changes, too.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Essential Oils Awesome for Natural Pet Care

10 Essential Oils Awesome for Natural Pet Care

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Essential Oils Awesome for Natural Pet Care


Over the last few decades, Essential oils have become a popular way to naturally improve physical health and mental wellbeing. Somewhat more recently, pet parents realised they could extend this same healing power to their dog babies as well. But not all oils that are safe for humans are safe for canines—so which oils are a good fit for your pup? The following are our 10 favorite essential oils for dogs. Enjoy!


A word of caution: Always consult a veterinarian before incorporating essential oils into your pet care routine. Specifically, ask if your chosen essential oil is safe for your pup, how the oil can benefit them, and what the best way to use the oil might be. Essential oils should always be diluted before use on or around pets.
For useful essential oil recipes for dogs, click here. For additional essential oil safety tips for dogs, click here. We do not suggest using essential oils on or around cats unless first approved through a veterinarian 

 

Frankincense

Because of its mild characteristics, frankincense essential oil is a great choice for pet parents new to essential oil use. Frankincense essential oil is said to increase blood flow, relieve nervousness and anxiety, boost immune system health, and ease pain associated with external ulcers. Many claim it also helps fight cancer by halting and/or reversing tumor growth.


Cedarwood

As you might have guessed, cedarwood is our absolute favorite essential oil (after all, it’s the basis of nearly all our botanical solutions). Cedarwood essential oil smells awesome and it’s an effective natural alternative to chemical-based flea & tick products. Because cedarwood essential oil is antifungal, antiseptic and because it helps increase circulation, it’s also said to help relieve a long list of canine skin issues—from dandruff and mange, to hot spots and general dermatitis due by insect bites. Some claim it also helps ease kennel cough as well arthritis!

 

Helichrysum

Helichrysum is one of the finest essential oils for canine pain relief. Gastrointestinal upset, cuts, bruises, aches, joint pain—all are said to be helped by this natural anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial and antifungal solution. Breathing problems due to allergies or build up of mucus in the lungs are also said to be helped by this flower-derived essential oil.

 

Lemongrass

6 Reasons We Love Lemongrass Essential Oil

Lemongrass essential oil has become a staple here at the Cedarcide offices. In addition to adding it to our new Tickshield formula, we use it to naturally freshen the air, as an odor-fighter for our office pups, and for aromatherapy to keep our team alert, optimistic and feeling great! With a long history of uses—including natural pest control, topical pain relief, and to help with canine skin health—lemongrass is one of the most useful essential oils for chemical-free pet care.

 

Lavender

Lavender is arguably the most popular essential oil among natural pet care enthusiasts. Prized above all for its soothing effects on anxiety, insomnia and hyperactivity, lavender essential oil can be an invaluable aid for calming your dog during car rides, vet visits, social events, and when left alone at home. In fact, a study from 2006 confirmed that lavender essential oil, when used in aromatherapy, helped alleviate travel-induced anxiety in canines. Cool, huh?

 

Marjoram 

Reportedly antifungal, antiseptic, and antibacterial, Marjoram is an earthy essential oil used for pets primarily to prevent infection, soothe depression, and in some cases even aid in diabetes and liver complications.

 

Roman Chamomile

Roman Chamomile essential oil is a known anti-inflammatory and pain reliever, making it especially popular among outdoor enthusiasts and their adventure pets. Muscle tightness, cramping, teething pain, and joint complications are all said to be helped by this powerful essential oil.

 

Peppermint

Peppermint is another essential oil praised for its soothing, pain-relieving effects. Its cooling, anti-inflammatory powers are renowned in the natural lifestyle community for helping improve discomfort associated with canine arthritis, hip dysplasia and other joint conditions. When used in conjunction with ginger, peppermint essential oil is also said to reduce symptoms associated with motion sickness in pups. As a bonus, it also boasts natural pest-control qualities.

 

Cardamom

Cardamom is a unique essential oil in that it helps with both digestion and respiratory problems. Pet parents have long given their pups relief from stomach aches, nausea, and gas using cardamom essential oil. Many also report that coughing and difficulty breathing are also improved through cardamom use.

 

Niaouli

Does your pup constantly suffer from allergies? Then niaouli essential oil might be just the natural remedy for you and your animal baby. As a powerful natural antihistamine and antibacterial Niaouli essential oil can combat both seasonal and skin allergies as well as secondary skin infections occurring as a result of allergy symptoms. Niaouli is often chosen as a safer alternative to tea tree oil, which can be harmful to some pets at higher doses.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

How to Tell if Your Dog is Overheating (And What You Can Do About It)

Cedarcide blog post image, How to Tell if Your Dog is Overheating

Heat is the biggest risk your dog faces in the summer. Overheating can come on quickly and the results can be devastating, including organ failure, stroke, heart attack, permanent neurological damage, and even the loss of your pet. Understanding the risk factors, signs, symptoms, and how to prevent heat stroke could very well save your pup’s life. Here’s what you need to know about overheating in dogs.


What Does Overheating Look Like?

Overheating, dehydration and heatstroke are fairly easy to spot if you know what to look for. All of the following signs/symptoms are associated with overheating in dogs:

  • Excessive panting
  • Excessive, unusually thick drooling
  • Dark, dry or pale gums
  • Faster than normal heart rate
  • Fever above 105° F
  • Noisy, labored breathing
  • Disorientation
  • Difficulty walking/standing
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Seizures or convulsions
  • Sunken or glassy eyes

 

What Dogs are at Risk of Overheating?

Any canine in a hot space can overheat, but some dogs are more at risk than others. Lack of shade, lack of water, too much exercise in hot or humid conditions, and lack of ventilation also raise the likelihood that your pup will overheat or become dehydrated. The following types of dogs are more vulnerable to overheating:

  • Dogs with extremely thick or long coats (but do not shave them, doing so can cause sunburn)
  • Obese dogs
  • Dogs kept primarily outside
  • Senior dogs
  • Puppies
  • Dogs with medical issues, such as breathing problems or heart conditions
  • Dogs with short noses: such as shih tzus, pugs, boxers, bulldogs, french bulldogs, boston terriers, pekingese

 

How to Prevent Overheating

Overheating is scary, but the good news is that it’s quite easy to prevent. Here’s how to help your pup avoid dehydration and overheating this summer:

  • Avoid walking, hiking or other exercise with your dog during the hottest times of the day. Go with early morning or evening instead.
  • Ensure your dog has plenty of ventilation, including indoors and when traveling in a car (never leave your dog in a car unattended).
  • Provide your dog with plenty of shade, rest breaks, and water when outside (offer water at least once every hour). Additionally, bring water on every walk, hike or any other outdoor activity you share with your pooch.
  • Keep the inside of your home cool, too.
  • Lastly, closely monitor your pet for the signs and symptoms of overheating mentioned above.

 

What to Do if Your Dog is Overheated

First thing’s first: at the first sign of dehydration or overheating, move your dog to cooler space immediately. Then, follow these 3 simple steps:

  1. Cool down your dog using cool—not cold—water. A bathtub, shower, garden hose, wet washcloth, pool or natural body of water all work. If using a hose or cloth, place special focus on the head and neck area, and under the armpits.
  2. Offer your dog cool—but again, not cold—water to drink. Let them drink as much as they like. Giving them water that’s too cold can lead to shock and vomiting, which will only make their dehydration and overheating worse.
  3. Lastly, get your dog to a vet ASAP. Even if you feel your pet is now O.K., overheating and heat stroke can cause hidden complications, such as organ damage, blood clots and swelling of the brain. If you feel your dog’s condition is serious (especially if they’re unresponsive), call the vet ahead of time to let them know you’re bringing in an animal that needs emergency medical attention.


Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our
Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Swimming Safety Tips for Dogs

5 Swimming Safety Tips for Dogs

Cedarcide blog post image, 5 Swimming Safety Tips for Dogs


Swimming is easily one of the best things about summer. Swimming with your dog, however, might be
the best thing about summer! After all, what’s more fun than cooling off while sharing some exercise and relaxation with your pup? But if you fail to take the proper precautions, swimming with your canine can turn un-fun very quickly. Whether cruising the beach, jumping in the pool, or exploring outdoor areas with rivers and lakes, here are 5 swimming tips to keep your dog safe this summer.

 

Don’t Assume all Dogs Can Swim

Contrary to popular opinion, not all dogs know how to swim. Actually, not all dogs can learn how to swim either. Athletic breeds like retrievers and labs tend to pick it up fast, but denser breeds and those with flat faces like bulldogs and pugs simply aren’t suited for the water (though you’ll occasionally spot an exception!). In fact, according to one popular American Bulldog Guide, drowning is the leading accidental cause of death among both Bulldogs and American Bulldogs—which only shows how closely we need to monitor our pups when they’re playing in or around water.

Similarly, micro breeds like chihuahuas can tire easily, leaving them vulnerable to drowning, especially in natural bodies of waters with waves. If your pup fits either of the above categories, outfit them with a dog-specific life vest or consider skipping the water activities altogether in favor of a safer option like a kiddie pool or sprinklers.

 

Ask Your Vet About Prevention

Adventure dogs—especially those that frequent rivers, ponds, lakes and oceans—are more susceptible to various illnesses and diseases. If your next outing involves natural bodies of water, visit a vet beforehand. Serious illnesses like Lyme disease and waterborne bacteria like Leptospira can sometimes be prevented with vaccinations. We suggest checking with your vet to ensure you’ve taken all possible precautions before your next water-filled outdoor excursion.

 

Never Let Them Drink the Water

Drinking salt water can lead to what’s commonly called “beach diarrhea,” a serious condition that can dehydrate or even kill your pup. Pool water contains chemicals, and drinking water from rivers, ponds and lakes exposes your dog to countless waterborne parasites and illnesses—like giardia for instance. Under no circumstance is it a good idea to let your pup drink from unfamiliar water sources, so keep a close eye anytime they approach the water’s edge. Because accidents happen, monitor your pet in the days after water activities, looking out for any signs of disease or infection—such as lethargy, diarrhea, fever, or loss of appetite. If you spot anything suspicious, visit your vet immediately. Quick tip: Thoroughly bathing your pet after swimming can help reduce their chance of suffering a waterborne health complication.

 

Beware Blue-Green Algae

Cyanobacteria, commonly called blue-green algae, is a bacteria that forms in both fresh and saltwater. Thriving in warm conditions, this bacteria can be extremely toxic to humans and pets alike. Sadly, for our canines ingestion is often fatal. When exploring outdoor spaces with natural bodies of water, always be on the lookout for blue-green algae, which typically floats on the water’s surface (if you don’t know what it looks like, click here). If you come across water covered in what looks like blue-green algae—even if you’re unsure and cannot confirm either way—it’s best to find another spot to play.

 

Learn Doggy CPR

Even if you do everything correct as a pet parent, accidents can still happen. That’s why it’s crucial that every dog owner learn canine CPR. While brief CPR guides can be found online, we suggest taking a course in person from your vet or a local animal organization for more thorough training.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Essential Summer Safety Tips for Dogs

10 Essential Summer Safety Tips for Dogs

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Essential Summer Safety Tips for Dogs

Summer’s here and with it comes one of the best times of year to explore the outdoors with your pup! Swimming, hiking, road-tripping, camping—there’s no end to the thrilling activities you can share with your animal buddy. But summer also presents some unique challenges and health concerns, principally intense sunshine and extreme heat. To keep the fun flowing and emergency vet visits at bay, here are ten Essential Summer Safety Tips for Dogs.

 

Keep them Cool

This is the most obvious but also most important rule of the summer. Here are some quick tips to ensure your pooch stays cool during the summer months:

  • Before walking, hiking, visiting the dog park, and other outdoor activities, consider the temperature and humidity. As a guide, if the humidity and temperature add up to more than 150, it’s too hot for your pup. (For example, if it’s 95°F and the humidity is 60%, which adds up to 155, it’s best to wait till it’s cooler.)
  • Always bring along water and take plenty of breaks when exploring the outdoors.
  • Ensure there’s a shady space and plenty of water when your pup’s in the backyard.
  • Keep your house cool, too (whether through A/C or fans).
  • If your doggo exhibits signs of exhaustion—weakness, excessive drooling, heavy panting, glazed eyes, vomiting—end physical activity immediately and consult a vet ASAP.


Watch Out for Heat Stroke

Typical canine temperature is between 100°-102.5. Heat stroke, which can permanently damage organs and even kill your pet, takes hold around 105°F. So, if worse comes to worse and your pup experiences heatstroke, you’ll need to be able to recognize the signs and symptoms quickly. Your dog’s life could depend on it. Here’s what to look out for:

  • Bright red gums, or gums that appear dry
  • Thick or excessive drooling
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of balance
  • Heavy panting
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Dark stool
  • Lack of urine

If you witness these symptoms, transport your pup to a cooler space as soon as possible and wipe them down with a cool, damp cloth. Have them drink cool—but not cold—water to avoid vomiting, which will only worsen dehydration and overheating. As soon as your pup is stable, visit a vet ASAP.

 

Keep the Bugs Away

Fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes can ruin otherwise enjoyable summer days. To protect your pet from pests and to avoid toxic pesticide exposure, apply a non-toxic, pet-safe bug repellent to your dog when venturing outside this summer.

 

Do Not Shave Your Dog

While shedding  hair can help humans stay cool, our dogs are a bit different. In fact, a dense coat can actually help keep your pooch cool, protecting them from the sun’s harmful rays. Shaving your dog’s fur makes them more vulnerable to a litany of heat-related complications, including heatstroke, sunburn and dehydration. For this reason, avoid shaving your dog during the summer season, or at any time for that matter.

 

Practice Good Hygiene

From swimming to hiking, our pups tend to get much grimier in the summer season. Apart from the unpleasant odor of a dirty dog, poor hygiene can allow bacteria to build up on your pooch’s skin, causing irritation and in some cases illness. A filthy coat can also make your dog more susceptible to biting bugs. As a guide, bathe your pup monthly throughout the summer, more often if they’re adventurers or outdoor dogs (but not too often, over-bathing can dry out your doggy’s skin). To avoid skin issues or exposure to harmful chemicals, always use a non-toxic pet-safe shampoo.

 

Never, Ever Leave Your Dog in a Hot Car

We’ve all heard this before, we all know it, and yet it still keeps happening. Even in temperatures as low as 80°F, your pup can suffer a stroke or perish in a hot car in just a few minutes—that’s all it takes! Under no circumstance, ever leave your pooch in a warm or hot vehicle. No excuses.

 

Avoid Sunburns

Did you know skin cancer is one of the most common kinds of cancer in dogs? And just like with humans, sunburns can develop fast without notice, resulting in serious pain for days, even weeks. Especially if your dog has a short coat, apply pet-safe sunscreen every 3–5 hours when you and your pup go outside. Pay special attention to the ears, belly, and other areas with little to no fur. We strongly suggest using only non-toxic, chemical-free sunscreen options.

 

Protect Your Dog’s Paws

Ever burn your feet on hot concrete? Yeah, it’s no fun, and the painful blisters can persist for weeks. Ouch! Well, your pup is not immune to this condition either. To protect their paw pads from cooking in the summer heat, avoid asphalt, concrete and other hot surfaces (including the metal beds of pickup trucks). To test whether a surface will harm your doggo’s paws, place the back of your hand on the surface for approximately 10 seconds. If it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog. Dog booties are another option for guarding your pooch’s feet during the summer months.

 

Avoid Unfamiliar Grassy Spaces

Avoiding unfamiliar grassy lots can greatly reduce both your dog’s and your family’s exposure to chemical-based pesticides. Many outdoor spaces—such as public parks, local dog parks, and neighboring yards—are regularly treated with these harmful toxins. Unless you’re familiar with the space and how it’s maintained, it’s best to find another place for your dog to play. The risk is simply too great.

 

Closely Monitor Water Activities

From bacteria and parasites in natural bodies of water, to chemicals and drowning hazards in pools, water activities can be risky for pets and pet owners. We’re not saying avoid the water outright—swimming with dogs and visiting the lake are some of our favorite things about summer—but you need to watch your pup closely when in or around water. Monitor your dog to ensure they don’t drink unfamiliar water, including that of creeks and chlorine-saturated pools. Also, be sure to rinse off your pup’s fur after they’ve been for a swim to remove chlorine, natural water contaminants, and to check for parasites like leeches.

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Tips to Help Your Dog Live Longer

10 Tips to Help Your Dog Live Longer

Cedarcide blog post image, 10 Tips to Help Your Dog Live Longer

Let’s start with the bad news: There’s no quick fix for extending your dog’s lifespan. However—and this is the good news—with continued effort and careful care, you can give your pup the best possible chance at a long and healthy life. Here’s 10 things you can do to enjoy a few extra years with your beloved fur baby.

 

Improve Their Diet

Avoiding overfeeding, choosing healthier, more natural foods, and adopting a breed appropriate diet can help improve and extend your pup’s life. In general, aim for diets that are as natural and raw as possible, avoiding fillers like wheat, corn, sugar and generic animal fats. We suggest consulting a vet or holistic vet to address your pup’s specific dietary needs.

 

Exercise Them More

Exercise helps your pup maintain a healthy weight, decreases their stress levels, and curbs behavior issues, along with countless other physical and mental benefits. While the amount of exercise will depend on breed, age and health, aim to get at least one session of aerobic exercise daily.

Check out these 5 Fun Ways to Exercise with Your Dog! 😎 🐶

 

Exercise the Mind, Too

Mental health is just as important as physical health when it comes to you pup’s lifespan. Bored dogs are more vulnerable to depression, anxiety, as well as other mental and physical ailments. Socialization with both people and dogs, training, and daily playtime are essential to keeping your pooch sharp as they age.

 

Pay Attention to Dental Health

It’s astonishing how many pet parents neglect their doggy’s teeth. In addition to pain and reduced quality of life, poor dental hygiene is directly associated with heart disease and organ damage, which means a shorter life for your dog. It might feel intimidating at first, but improving your pup’s oral care isn’t really that hard or time-consuming. First thing’s first, visit the vet for a dental checkup and tips for brushing your pooch’s chompers. Brush daily thereafter and keep annual dental checkups to stay informed about the state of your pup’s dental hygiene.

For more Tips on Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth, click here.

Also, check out these 7 Ways to Freshen Your Dog’s Breath Naturally.

 

Visit the Vet More

Regardless of how healthy your dog seems, regular vet visits are still very important. Uncovering health complications early significantly improves your pup’s chance of overcoming whatever issue they might face. Plus, as your pup ages, a vet can supply you with tips for keeping them in tip-top shape between visits. Preventive care is one of the easiest and most effective ways to extend your pooch’s life.

 

Pay Attention to Warning Signs

Stinky breath, excessive drooling, a change in appetite or sleeping patterns, lethargy, diarrhea—all could be early warning signs of a serious health problem. If your dog’s mood, energy, or activity levels change suddenly, it’s a good idea to get them checked over by a vet. Consistently monitoring your pet’s health is a big step toward helping them enjoy a longer life.

 

Reduce Exposure to Harmful Chemicals

Chemicals present in household cleaners, lawn & garden products, flea & tick formulas and other pet products can shorten your doggy’s lifespan. Because many of these chemicals are bioaccumulative—meaning they build up in the body over time—even repeated minor exposure is enough to impact your dog’s health. Consider switching out these products for non-toxic alternatives, especially when it comes to lawn pesticides and topical insect repellents. Doing so will lessen you and your family’s exposure, too.

 

Let Them Chill Out

Just like people, dogs age poorly if they’re constantly stressed. Exercise and playtime are crucial to the health of your pet, but there’s a limit and moderation is key. Relaxation and downtime play a crucial role in a healthy and balanced doggy lifestyle. Allow your pup a few hours alone each day to sleep or rest as they see fit. Additionally, do not coerce your dog to play or socialize if they’re simply not in the mood, chances are they need a break.

 

Enrich Their Lives

Introducing new experiences and adding variety to your dog’s life not only improves their quality of life but can actually help extend it, too. Much like humans, boredom and a sedentary lifestyle are counterproductive to a long and healthy lifespan. Up your pet parent game by taking your pooch on more outings—like dog park visits, playdates, even vacations and simple errands. Practicing and learning new tricks also works to keep their mind nimble and engaged.

 

Groom Them More Often

Grooming is about more than vanity. Regular brushing and bathing can help uncover foreign bodies that might be lurking in your pup’s coat. From painful burrs to bacteria to disease-carrying pests, items lodged in your dog’s fur can cause not only pain but also illness, and the sooner you address these hazards the less chance they have of affecting your pooch’s health.

How to Care for Your Senior Dog: 6 Tips

 

Thoughts, suggestions, have your own tips to add? Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to let us know what you think!

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