5 Dangerous Halloween Candies for Dogs

candy corn

By: Dr. Eva Evans, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency.

Halloween is associated with spooky haunted houses, costume parties and most of all, Halloween candy! Certain types of candy can be toxic and very dangerous to pets. Below are are five dangerous Halloween candies for dogs.

1. Candy Corn & Other High Sugar Candy

Candies that are made with pure sugar can cause severe gas and diarrhea. The sugar not only provides a great source of food for gut bacteria to indulge on, it can also pull water into the colon and cause a bad case of diarrhea.

2. Chocolate Covered Raisins

These tasty treats combine two potentially deadly ingredients in dogs. Chocolate can cause severe vomiting, diarrhea and seizures. Raisins (and other grape products) can cause severe kidney failure. The two of these combined is the ultimate toxic nightmare for Fido. If your dog eats any chocolate covered raisins this Halloween, he needs to be taken to your veterinarian immediately for treatment.

3. Candy with WrappersRead More…

4 Halloween Survival Tips for Your Dog

Halloween tips for dogs when getting trick or treaters at your door.

By Arden Moore, a certified dog and cat behaviorist with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best, a cat insurance and dog insurance agency.

Got a people-pleasing dog, but not sure how he will fare on that one night of the year when your door bell seems to work overtime? Halloween can unleash plenty of stress in even the most even-tempered canine.

Think about it from your dog’s perspective. Most nights, no one rings your bell. The two of you are more likely relaxing on the sofa catching up on favorite television shows with no noisy outside interruptions.

Before the witching hour arrives, candidly assess your dog’s tolerance for strange people boldly coming to your front porch, ringing your doorbell and loudly proclaiming, “Trick or treat!”

Your primary objective should be keeping your dog safe and calm. If you have a dog who is overly protective of you, growls or cowers at people wearing hats, sunglasses or strange outfits; or copes with frightening situations by trying to flee and bolt out of the door, please usher your dog into a quiet room far from the front door. Inside that room, be it a bathroom or bedroom, provide your dog with keep-busy toys, water and food, a comfy bed and turn on a classical music station on a radio or television that serves to soothe your dog and muffle the front door trick-or-treat activity.

Dogs are masters at reading our moods, so be confident and upbeat as you take him into this room. He should not regard this as a punishment, but as solo playtime. If you do have a family member or friend who is willing to spend time with your dog in that room while you greet the costumed visitors that would be an ideal remedy.

Now, if you have a dog who eagerly loves greeting people and behaves like a four-legged political candidate on the campaign trail, I recommend these strategies:

1. Tether your dog.
As the sun sets on Halloween, attach your dog to you using a waist leash. This allows you to have your hands free to hand out candy (and controlling your dog if necessary) while limiting your dog’s movement toward strangers.

2. Give your dog a workout.
If possible, exercise your dog’s mind and body a few hours before trick-or-treaters arrive. Your goal is to tire out your dog. If you are unable to take your dog on a vigorous walk and then play some fun doggy mental games, consider hiring a professional dog walker or pet sitter to be your proxy for that afternoon.Read More…

Black Cats, Bad Luck?

Are black cats really unlucky?

By Dr. Tracy McFarland, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a pet insurance agency for dogs and cats.

In America black cats are often viewed as unlucky, but the Russians, Japanese, Scots, Irish and English disagree. They all feel that black cats bring luck and prosperity. Sailors have historically preferred black cats on their ships to bring luck and to take care of any stowaway rodents.

Black cats probably got their unlucky reputation in America from their association with so- called “witches” in the Middle ages. More recently, they have been associated with Halloween, especially the classic scared kitty with hunched back and bottle brush tail.

Despite their bad luck reputation, black cats have been a very popular motif in American advertising. I’m guessing graphic artists aren’t particularly superstitious. Black cats have been very lucky for merchants selling everything from hair pomade to motor oil.

While black cats certainly don’t bring bad luck, they aren’t always so lucky when it comes to finding a forever home. Black cats can be breathtakingly beautiful, but that isn’t always obvious in a cage or in a photo on an adoption website. With the addition of the ” bad luck” rap, it’s no wonder that black kittens and cats are often at the end of the line, when it comes to adoption. Some rescues have improved odds for their black kittens and cats by naming them ” Jellybean” or ” Licorice”.Read More…

Why Some Cat Eyes Glow Red at Night

cat eyesBy Arden Moore, a certified cat and dog behaviorist with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Arden is an author, radio host, and writer for Pets Best, a cat insurance and dog insurance agency.

I was asked the following question by a cat owner, “When I walk around my house at night in dimly lit rooms, sometimes I get spooked a bit when I see my cat. Precious is a sweet Siamese cat, but at night, her eyes seem to glow red in the dark, giving off a devilish look…What causes her eyes to glow red at night?”

Good question. Your cat’s large, round eyes are designed to operate far better in low light conditions and the dark than our eyes. As hunters who are active at dawn and dusk – the best times for them to stalk prey – cats can actually see as well in pitch black as we can see in full moonlight. Here are two reasons cats’ eyes glow in the dark.Read More…

Cat Breed Guide: Norwegian Forest Cat

A Norwegian Forest cat with pet insurance from Pets Best.By Dr. Fiona, a veterinarian and writer for Pets Best, a dog insurance and cat insurance agency.

About the Norwegian Forest Cat

Weight:  12-24lb. Females are considerably smaller

Points of conformation: Strong, but not stocky build with large triangular head and straight profile.  Lynx tipping on the medium sized ears is preferred.  Large round paws with tufts of fur.  Shorter body than the Maine Coon.

Coat: Very heavy, dense double coat is semi-long and hard in texture.  Ruff, collar and mane are present.

Color: All colors are accepted except cinnamon, fawn and sable.

Grooming needs: Minimal grooming needs due to low matting tendency, a brief brush twice weekly is usually enough.

Origin: Norway.

Behavior Traits: Easy-going to aloof in nature.

Is a Norwegian Forest  cat right for You?Read More…

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