Pet Loss Resources

This week I lost my cat, Lola, of seventeen years. She passed away at home with me, expected in some ways due to her age but the grief is still great and I will be taking some time off to process my loss. In the meantime, I wanted to pull together some resources for pet parents that go through this difficult process – it is true grief and I want to give space for pet parents to feel it for what it is and have support.  Thank you for your understanding.

 

Articles:

Why We Need to Take Pet Loss Seriously (Scientific American) 

Four Steps to Take After Experiencing Pet Loss (Psychology Today)

The Death of a Pet Can Hurt as Much as the Loss of a Relative (The Washington Post)

Resources:

Association of Pet Loss and Bereavement – online support groups and other resources

End of Life Care Services at AZ Humane Society

Memorial & Tribute Gifts from AZ Humane Society 

 

#SDTdaily10 Enrichment Challenge

We love enrichment here at Smiles Dog Training! Enrichment is the concept of improving your pet’s experience in a way that is valuable to them. Quarantine has shown us just how difficult it is to be stuck with limited options, so we are starting an enrichment challenge for our clients and followers. We’ll be posting ideas and sharing tips on how to level up enrichment too!

The goal:
Develop the habit of giving your dog (or cat!) daily enrichment – starting with 10 minutes a day.

To participate:
1 – Comment below #SDTDaily10
2 – Put 10 minutes a day on your calendar (at any time) – for your dog’s well-being!
3 – Keep me posted by tagging @smilesdogtraining on social media and using the hashtag #SDTdaily10 so we can hold each other accountable to improving our pet’s lives every day! ?

 

Enrichment Ideas to Try with Your Pup

COVID-19 Important Updates

To keep myself and my clients healthy, I have decided to suspend in-person appointments for new clients temporarily. I will also be moving current clients to an extended training plan that may include virtual support and outdoor sessions to minimize exposure risks.

If you are a new client looking for training help, we can still start working together! Please sign-up for a virtual consultation (60 minutes). I use virtual sessions to support current clients often with great success.

If you are a current or former client looking for a way to help support my business during this difficult time, grab a virtual session or two. We can catch up on your training progress, talk about the implications of COVID-19 as a pet owner, or you can even gift virtual consultations to your family and friends!

Smiles Dog Training, Sara Miles CPDT-KA - Phoenix, AZ #nationalpoisonpreventionweek

5 Toxic Dangers to Your Pets

I DO USE AFFILIATE LINKS IN THIS BLOG POST, WHICH MEANS AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU AMAZON AND OTHERS PAY ME A LITTLE BIT FOR MY PRODUCT REFERRAL. ANY RECOMMENDATIONS I MAKE WILL ALWAYS BE PRODUCTS I KNOW, USE, AND LOVE! 

This week is #NationalPoisonPreventionWeek – an annual awareness campaign to keep dogs and cats safe at home. Check out this list of the top 5 dangers lurking in your house!

1) Plants.

Both indoor and outdoor plants can be toxic to your pets. Check out the ASPCA’s list of plants to find out which ones to stay away from and which are safe.

2) Your refrigerator and pantry.

Smiles Dog Training, Sara Miles CPDT-KA, Lili Chin drawing of dangerous foods
Drawing by Lili Chin.

Some foods that are safe for humans can be dangerous to dogs and cats. Order one of Lili Chin’s magnets (see graphic above) so you have a consistent reminder not to feed your pets these dangerous foods. There are plenty of human foods that are perfectly safe for pets – learn more about incorporating these safe foods into your pet’s diet!

3) Household cleaners.

From toilet bowl cleaners to air fresheners to floor cleaners, these items usually contain toxic chemicals that your pet may ingest just walking around in your house and then licking their paws or trying to get a drink out of an open toilet.  Switch to cleaners with natural ingredients and keep pets out of spaces where you’ve used harsh cleaners.

4) Pet food.

Be sure to follow pet food recalls (there’s a current list right here on my blog sidebar!).  And watch my video on pet food safety:


5) Some essential oils.

While a variety of oils can be helpful with medical and behavioral issues, it’s important to know which oils are dangerous to pets and it’s also very important to remember to dilute the safe oils before use!

 

Keep your pets healthy by switching to pet safe items, making note of your nearest 24 hour emergency vet, and saving the ASPCA’s Poison Prevention Hotline on your phone.  Pet Insurance can be very helpful as well if your pet ingests something they shouldn’t – I recommend Pet’s Best pet insurance and use it for my own pets!

Food Puzzle Toy Enrichment for Pets | Smiles Dog Training, www.smilesdogtraining.net

Trainer Recommends: Food Puzzle Popsicles (A How To Guide)

I DO USE AFFILIATE LINKS IN THIS BLOG POST, WHICH MEANS AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU AMAZON AND OTHERS PAY ME A LITTLE BIT FOR MY PRODUCT REFERRAL. MY “TRAINER RECOMMENDS” SERIES WILL ALWAYS BE PRODUCTS I KNOW, USE, AND LOVE! 

One of my favorite recommendations for all my clients, from puppies to adults (and even cats!), is to incorporate the “Food Puzzle Popsicle” into your home routine! Read more

two cats and two dogs - choose the right food for your pet

How to Choose the Right Food for your Pet

I DO USE AFFILIATE LINKS IN THIS BLOG POST, WHICH MEANS AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU AMAZON and others PAY ME A LITTLE BIT FOR MY PRODUCT REFERRAL. MY “TRAINER RECOMMENDS” SERIES WILL ALWAYS BE PRODUCTS I KNOW, USE, AND LOVE! 

While pet stores and grocery stores offer a wide variety of foods, it can be very challenging to find a truly nutritionally appropriate food for your pet on store shelves. Boutique pet stores sometimes carry higher quality brands, but it’s important to make sure you’re paying for nutrition and not just a fancier package! Let me give you some tips on how to choose the right food for your pet. Read more

How To Keep Your Pets Safe During Fireworks

I DO USE AFFILIATE LINKS IN THIS BLOG POST, WHICH MEANS AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU AMAZON PAYS ME A LITTLE BIT FOR MY PRODUCT REFERRAL. MY “TRAINER RECOMMENDS” SERIES WILL ALWAYS BE PRODUCTS I KNOW, USE, AND LOVE! AND I LOVE SHOPPING ON AMAZON SINCE WE HAVE THAT PRIME FREE SHIPPING ?

Keep Your Pets Safe During Fireworks infographic

More pets in the United States end up lost in shelters on 4th of July than on any other day of the year! Check out these tips on how to make the best of this very loud holiday:

Read more