Pet Insurance Blog

Monday March 9, 2015

Gettin’ Crafty: Upcycled Pet Food Storage Container

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A perfect project for pet parents who want a durable and adorable—not to mention environmentally friendly—place to store their pet’s food! 

Supplies

•  An empty popcorn tin or small metal trash can with a lid
•  A can of spray paint (any color)
•  A self-adhesive chalkboard label
•  Chalk

Steps

  1. Wash, rinse and dry your container.
  2. Turn the container upside-down in well-ventilated area like on the lawn or in an open garage atop a painter’s tarp or old towel.
  3. Spray paint the outside of container and it’s lid, and let it dry.
  4. Adhere chalkboard label to side of the container.
  5. Identify the contents by writing on the label with a piece of chalk.

Personalize your container by decorating the label with different colors of chalk, maybe even adding a cute paw print design, and getting a new food scoop to match your newly revamped container.

 


Tuesday February 24, 2015

Veg Out with Your Pet

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Vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables can be a healthy way to supplement your pet’s regular canned or dry food diet. Just make sure they’re pet-safe, and always consult your vet before introducing new foods.


Monday January 26, 2015

Pets & Cancer

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According to the Animal Cancer Foundation, roughly 6 million dogs and a similar number of cats are diagnosed with cancer each year. Cancer is a scary word, but new treatments and preventative tactics are helping us win the fight against the disease.

Early detection is key and knowing the symptoms can make all the difference. Be sure to keep an eye out for:

  • • Lumps
  • • Swelling
  • • Persistent sores
  • • Abnormal discharge from any part of the body
  • • Bad breath
  • • Listlessness/lethargy
  • • Rapid, often unexplained, weight loss
  • • Sudden lameness
  • • Black, tarry stools
  • • Decreased or loss of appetite
  • • Difficulty breathing, urinating or defecating

For more information about cancer in pets, visit our friends at the ASPCA®.


Monday January 5, 2015

Bath Time Tips

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Bath time doesn’t have to be a battle. Use these tips to make the cleansing process more fun for both you and your furry friend!

  • Temperature- Just like Goldilocks, you’ll want to find a lukewarm temperature that’s just right for your pet.
  • Toys- Rubber duckies aren’t just for children! Bath toys can help keep your dog entertained while you concentrate on the task at hand.
  • Treats- Hand out a small snack before, during and after a good scrubbing to help your pet associate tub time with fun time.

Want more? Check out our friends at the ASPCA® for further information about bathing your dog and cat.


Monday December 29, 2014

Top 10 Dog Names

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We’ve got the 10 most popular names for our best canine friends.+ Did your dog’s name make the list?

  1. Bella
  2. Max
  3. Buddy
  4. Lucy
  5. Bailey
  6. Molly
  7. Daisy
  8. Charlie
  9. Maggie
  10. Chloe

We also cover close to 200 Gizmos, nearly 160 Oreos and one Sir Scruffy McDoodle!

Are you planning to adopt a dog this month? Save 10% on each additional pet! Get a free quote to learn more.

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Monday December 22, 2014

5 Boredom Busting Winter Activities

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If your pet is showing signs of cabin fever, try these fun activities to brighten the day.

  1. Offer a treat-filled puzzle toy
  2. Arrange a pet play date
  3. Play fetch or chase inside
  4. Set up a treat hunt around the house
  5. Go on an outing to a pet store

Check out even more fun ideas here!


Saturday December 20, 2014

Beat the Winter Doldrums with Indoor Fun

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The snow and cold have arrived. If you are looking for fun winter activities for you and your pet, these ideas will chase Old Man Winter away:

  • • Create a pet playground with discarded gift boxes and wrapping paper.
    • Play hide and seek with your pet by hiding treats around the house.
    • Practice a new trick, like speaking, shaking hands, or rolling over.
    • Give your pet a treat dispensing toy to knock around the house.
    • Throw a small ball across the room for a good old fashioned game of fetch.

And don’t forget one of the best ways to warm up on a cold day – a good, long cuddle with your furry friend.


Monday December 15, 2014

7 Safety Shortcuts for a Happy Holiday

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With so much going on this time of year, it’s not always easy to keep your pet safe and sound. Here are a few shortcuts to help make your holidays vet visit-free.

  1. Give a Special Treat – With all the festive foods around, why not make something special for your pet? Check out this recipe for Apple + Carrot Dog Treats.
  2. Avoid Harmful Sweets – Speaking of holiday goodies, remember to keep your pet away from troublesome treats, like chocolate and desserts sweetened with Xylitol.
  3. Raise Your Glass – Place glass ornaments and fragile decorations out of paws reach so your pet can knock them down or bat them around and break them.
  4. Enlist a Helper Elf – If you’re the host, ask a trustworthy guest to keep an eye on your pet. This way, your furry friend will be safe while you focus on the festivities.
  5. Provide a Respite – Parties can make some pets anxious or uncomfortable. Set up a warm and quiet spot out of the way where your four-legged friend can retreat.
  6. Lift the Gifts – Is your pet nosy? Put the presents atop a sturdy table. You can also help satisfy your pet’s urge to open with a treat-filled gift of his or her own.
  7. Wind Them Up – Holiday light cords can be troublesome for pets. Consider tucking them away in a cable box or winder, which you can buy at a hardware store.

If your pet does get into trouble during the holidays, an ASPCA Pet Health Insurance plan can help you manage the costs. Get a free quote.


Monday December 8, 2014

Frosty Outside? These Cold Weather Pet Tips Can Help!

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It's cold outside, but these tips can help keep your pet healthy and safe in spite of the chill.

For cats:

  • • Keep your cat inside if possible, since felines can freeze, get lost, or suffer injuries outdoors in the cold.
    • Antifreeze has a sweet taste cats tend to like. Help avoid an accidental poisoning by cleaning spills or leaks.
    • Cats love sleeping in warm places. Prevent burns by protecting your cat from fireplaces, stoves and heaters.

For dogs:

  • • Wipe off your dog after being outdoors to remove salt and other chemicals that can be harmful if licked and ingested. Also consider using pet-safe de-icing salt.
    • Trim longhaired dogs to avoid ice and salt clinging to them, but don't go too short or they might get chilly.
    • Consider a coat or sweater, especially for shorthaired pups, to help retain body heat and prevent dry skin.

Also, be sure to offer a nutritious diet with plenty of protein to help make sure your fluffy friend's coat and health are in top shape.


Monday December 1, 2014

A Pup's Turkey Feast

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Cook up a special Thanksgiving dinner for your dog with this simple and healthy recipe. It's a great way to use up leftovers too!

Ingredients
1 ½lb. cut up turkey (no bones or skin)
½ lb. cooked sweet potatoes, diced
½ c. cooked oatmeal
1 T. cranberry sauce

Directions
Mix all of the ingredients together and portion out at dinnertime. Store the
remainder in the refrigerator for a future meal.


Monday November 24, 2014

Thanksgiving Safety

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As you plan your family’s Thanksgiving menu, keep in mind what to leave off your pet’s plate. Here are 5 expensive examples of commonly swallowed objects.+

Swallowed Object Approx. Claim Amount
Turkey Bones $2,600
Cornhusk $4,500
Plastic Baggie $4,800
Ribbon $4,270
Almonds $4,570


We’re thankful we could help these pets get the care they needed. Visit 101 Things You Didn’t Know Could Harm Your Pet for more holiday safety tips.

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Monday November 17, 2014

To Tell the Truth: Black Cats

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Black cats can make the best companions. To prove it, we’ve compiled some fun facts about our sable-coated friends.

1. Black cats are considered lucky in the UK and Asia.
2. Melanism, which causes their raven fur, may also enhance their immune systems.
3. Their fur goes with everything and won’t show on your little black dress.
Bonus: You can tell everyone you adopted a mini panther!

Having problems getting a good shot? Check out these tips.


Saturday November 8, 2014

Pets Are Bold: Ashley's Story

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We cover bold because we know how adventurous pets can be. Ashley’s dog is one such little daredevil.

“She loves the boat, especially jumping off to go play at the sandbar." –Ashley F.

See more bold pets and share your courageous companion’s story with us here


Monday November 3, 2014

Lend a Helping Hand

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Of course, the best way to help a shelter pet is adoption. But if that’s not possible, you can still lend a hand in other meaningful ways.

Volunteer – Give some of your time to help a shelter organize events or care for animals.
Fundraise – Organize a fundraiser, like a bake sale, and donate the proceeds to a shelter.
Donate – Ask a local shelter what supplies they need and gather donations from friends.

If you have kids, you can also get them involved and give them a great lesson in caring for animals.

Want do more? Check out this list of the “Top Ten Ways to Help Your Local Shelter” from our friends at the ASPCA®.


Monday October 27, 2014

Top 3 Halloween Safety Tips

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These tips can help your pet have a happy Halloween without a scary accident:

1. Spooky Lighting– Make jack-o’-lanterns glow with battery lights, not candles, to prevent accidents.
2. No Quick Tricks– Watch that your pet doesn’t scoot out the door when you open it for trick-or-treaters.
3. Ghoulish Treats– Keep chocolate, candy with Xylitol and other toxic foods out of paw’s reach.

Learn more about why chocolate is so dangerous for your pet.


Monday October 20, 2014

Pets Are Fearless: Kai's Story

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We cover fearless because we know how daring pets can be. Kai is one such brave buddy.

“Kai was the most terrified little dog when we adopted her. She wouldn't do anything but sit in the corner and shake. She wouldn't take food from you, look at you and she definitely wouldn't let you touch her. When we first met her at the adoption event, she not only peed on my husband when the lady took her out of her crate and handed her to him, but on herself as well. 3 years later, she is doing amazing. She is so sweet, smart, fun and excitable. She'll do just about anything. This photo is us paddleboarding for the first time!" –Christie C.

See more fearless pets and share your courageous companion’s story with us here


Monday October 13, 2014

Pet First-Aid Prep

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Do you know what to do if your pet has an accident? These tips can help you be better prepared.

Set a plan – Ask your vet about an emergency protocol, especially if your clinic isn’t available 24/7.
Make a kit – Have a pet first-aid kit ready with gauze, non-stick bandage pads and tape, saline eye flush and other useful items.
Be careful – Handle an injured pet with caution. Even the sweetest dog or cat can act out when hurt. And try to stay calm, so you can think clearly and avoid upsetting your pet even more.

For more advice on what to do in an emergency, visit 101 Things You Didn’t Know Could Harm Your Pet.


Monday October 6, 2014

Fire Safety Advice

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Are you prepared for a fire emergency? Here are a few tips to help get you ready.

Watch those flames – Always keep an eye on your pet around open flames, like candles, fireplace and fire pits.
Pet proof your home – Address issues, like unsecured electrical wires, that can sometimes cause pets to inadvertently start a fire.
Have an exit plan – Hang a collar and leash near both the front and back doors in case you need to evacuate quickly.

You should also affix a pet rescue alert sticker where it can be seen by emergency responders, so they’ll be aware of any pets in your home.

Get one free through the ASPCA®’s website.

For more pet safety tips, visit 101 Things You Didn’t Know Could Harm Your Pet.


Monday September 29, 2014

Apple + Carrot Dog Treats

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Want to make a special treat for your dog? Whip up some Apple + Carrot Treats. They’re simple to make and healthy for your best friend.

Ingredients
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup grated carrots
1 egg
½ cup unsweetened applesauce

Instructions
1. Mix it all together and roll dough into small balls.
2. Press down gently to make treats about ¼-inch thick.
3. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes.

Let them cool down and then let your pup have at ‘em! If you have a tasty recipe your dog or cat laps up, share it with us on Facebook.


Monday September 8, 2014

Prevent Cat Falls

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As summer heat wanes, you may be more likely to open a window rather than crank the A/C. But remember to take care that your cat doesn’t tumble out.

Even a fall from a 1- or 2-story home can cause injuries like a shattered jaw or punctured lung. Help keep your cat safe by making sure window screens are secure. 

Visit 101 Things You Didn’t Know Could Harm Your Pet for more pet safety tips.