Dog Spa & Resort: Learn More About This New Pet Trend

dog spa

When was the last time your dog got a good grooming? Experts recommend getting your dog groomed about once a month. This is ideal for maintaining your pet’s health and wellbeing. A dog spa and resort are becoming a popular way to pamper your four-legged family member. These doggy salons take traditional grooming services a step further with special features. So what spa services for dogs do they offer besides getting scrubbed, clipped, and styled? Here’s everything you should expect when bringing your pet to a dog spa and resort.

Impressive Menu of Dog Spa and Resort Services

A dog spa and resort will go beyond the standard full-service wash, cut, and dry. They offer extra primping services, either as package deals or a la carte.

Bathing

Expect to find dog soaking baths with special bathing systems to massage the dog. A dog spa and resort may also offer innovative hair coloring techniques. These refresh a dog’s natural coat color or let you try something new.

Haircuts

You can expect more artistic-inspired haircuts and styles for your pet at a spa. Groomers base these on the dog’s unique breed and coat type.

They also offer special grooming techniques to help the dogs to shed less. You can book sanitary or facial trims as well.

Pedicures

Pedicure services are also on most dog spa menus. This includes trimming, shaping, and painting your pup’s nails. You can choose from a clear coat or a variety of colors.

Spas also use salves that help condition pet paws. This works to prevent dryness and cracking. They also offer coconut oil massages for a pup’s pads and nose.

Treatments

Other common menu items include conditioning or shed control treatments. These can help to relieve skin allergies for pets as well.

Deshedding treatments are one of the most popular add-on services at a doggy spa. This is because shedding tends to happen year-round for certain breeds. Some spas offer facials to help reduce tear stains on a dog’s fur.

Oral and Gland Care

Oral care is another key service offered by dog spas. Dogs receive teeth brushing and breath fresheners. They also get ear cleanings and ear pluckings.

Many spas will even express anal glands to help control unwanted odors. Pet colognes are another popular service.

All the Right Tools…

Spa professionals use special brushing tools and techniques. These help to stimulate the natural production of oil for your dog’s skin and coat. Other grooming products work to remove loose hair.

Dog spas carry a variety of brushes for different coat types. This includes wire pin, bristle, and slicker style brushes. Special combs and rakes are used for targeting matted hair.

dog products

Quality Dog Spa and Resort Products

A spa for dogs will likely only carry top-of-the-line products and brands. Their spa features the latest equipment, tools, and professional dog supplies.

Some salons only use organic, all-natural ingredients. They favor hypoallergenic products, without any harsh additives.

This includes gentle shampoos and conditioning treatments with fresh scents. Some spas offer color-enhancing or whitening shampoos as well. Safe essential oils may also get used to promote pet relaxation during bathtime.

High-end pet spas carry the finest cotton towels. Some even provide doggie bathrobes and slippers. Others outfit dogs in branded bandanas and bows after their spa day is complete.

Most dog spas require proper vaccination before allowing any appointments for your pet. This is to ensure the health of all dogs and the staff. So, be sure your dog is up-to-date on all their shots and medications.

An Extra Soothing Environment

Doggy spas pride themselves on offering a safe and comfortable environment. This is because a dog spa day is designed to help relax your pet.

The staff is also great at handling anxious dogs. Many things can create stress for your pet, including a trip to the groomer.

Spas offer the most comfortable facilities, with soothing music and calming scents. Many even carry eye drops to keep shampoo from irritating your pet’s eyes.

Many spas offer special hair drying methods to make dogs feel more comfortable. This includes hand dryers and soft heated towels.

Certain massage techniques help relieve anxiety in dogs. These services are also beneficial for dogs with arthritis or other pain.

Larger spas have different sized baths for small and larger breeds. They offer separate facilities for bathing, drying, and styling.

Many spas also offer doggy daycare services and resort-style lodging. This includes comfy sleeping arrangements and daily walks. Your dog will also enjoy plenty of exercise activities and space to run around.

A few spas even host special events and activities for pets and their owners. These creative ideas help bring in new clients and boost business.

dog spa

A Superior Dog Spa and Resort Service, Every Single Time

Services at a doggy spa often fall at a higher price point than your typical dog groomers. This is because these businesses pride themselves on five-star services. It’s the same level of service as you would find at a luxury spa or resort.

These facilities staff professionals trained in all dog breeds and personality types. This includes puppies and special needs dogs.

Spas strive to offer quick, efficient, and consistent service to both dogs and their owners. These professionals in the pet grooming industry also have impressive attention to detail. They rely on their quality of service to boost client loyalty.

Many spas use the latest in technology and social media to drive business. As more consumers are relying on technology to make pet services more convenient. Many spas feature WiFi cameras so you can check-in on your pet from your phone or desk computer.

These spas offer online appointment booking services for their clients. They send automated communications to remind clients of upcoming appointments.

Many even feature mobile pet grooming services. This is where the specialists come to the dog’s home for appointments.

Enhancing the Dog Spa and Resort Experience

It’s easy to see why the dog spa is trending among pet owners all over the world. A day at the spa gets enhanced with unique services and quality pet products. Dogs enjoy all this in a comfortable and soothing environment, with superior service.

The best dog spas also offer the latest in technology to boost convenience for clients. Learn more about how 123Pet Software can help enhance your pet business.

8 Websites Every Dog Owner Should Bookmark

dog website

The way we look at personal pets over the years has changed, but humans have cared for animals forever. First, as cattle and workers; now, pets are looked at as part of the family. Dogs are man’s best friend, and they make our lives so much better. This companionship comes with its anxieties, however. We wonder if we are taking care of them to the best of our abilities? Who will care for them while we’re away? Doing some research on a professional dog website will help make us the best pet parents possible.

8 Dog Websites Every Dog Owner Should Bookmark

1. Bring Fido

Everyone needs a good vacation every once in a while. New dog owners know the dilemma between bringing your pet with you or trusting someone to watch them at home.

Luckily, hotels have begun to open up their policies to include our four-legged, furry, friends. On Bring Fido, you can check out the ever-expanding trend of pet-friendly hotels, bed and breakfasts, vacation rentals, and events.

dog website

2. Dogster

This website is full of dog advice; it’s a must-have for all new dog owners.

Dogster’s weekly website features offer guidance straight from the teachings of respected vets and trainers. It also offers a collection of blogs focusing on a range of topics from dog breeds, grooming, training, and health topics.

There’s a fantastic advice column where you can post your own dog-related questions and receive community information or feedback.

This dog website even includes a “Photo” tab where you can learn how to make the best of a doggie photo-op and browse pictures other dog owners have shared of their furry companions.

dogster

3. MSPCA Dog Website

MSPCA is a great resource for dog owners! This website hosts a library of important information we might for about until tragedy strikes.

Get ahead of the game and use the free information around you to best prepare yourself and your family. MSPCA offers material on disaster preparedness, home insurance, and poison control.

dog website

4. I Heart Dogs

This company was founded on the “Every Dog Matters” motto. Every profit via products sold from I Heart Dogs is equated to a certain number of meals which were donated to dogs in need. They have donated over 7 million meals since start-up alone! So now you can spoil your own pup while helping out less-fortunate dogs, a win-win situation for all dog lovers.

You can buy human and canine merchandise, pet supplies, healthcare items, housewares, and even jewelry through I Heart Dogs!

i heart dogs

5. Barkbox

Monthly subscription crates and packages have been all the rage with us, humans, lately. Why shouldn’t we treat our pets similarly? With Barkbox, you can!

Barkbox is a monthly subscription box that brings all the best treats, toys, outfits and more straight to your door! They have boxes specially designed for little, medium, and big dogs with an extra special design for our tough chewers.

Barkbox is backed by a satisfaction guarantee, so if a goodie isn’t quite right for your pup just send it back and Barkbox will make it up to you. no questions asked.

bark box

6. Petco Dog Website

This company may seem like no brainer when it comes to dog advice but, sometimes, their website is forgotten about. Petco is a fantastic website when it comes to things like grooming and veterinary care but it’s also a great option for ordering food. Here you can check all the ingredients and customer testimonies for your dog’s favorite food.

Every dog owner has experienced the annoyance of realizing you’ve run out of dog food after you’ve run all your errands for the night, ending up with one more trip out of the house. Never experience this inconvenience again when you order your food straight to your door via Petco. Also, Petco rewards online customers with things like coupons and free shipping!

petco

7. Puppyhood By Purina

This website is a gem for new dog owners. Puppyhood by Purina is a compilation of all the best training advice. Browse training techniques, exercise, grooming, advice and take care of your new pooch to the best of your ability.

They also have a customizable widget to track your dog’s milestones and get advice from experts for your pup’s daily progress.

puppyhood

8. Dog Breed Info Center

The Dog Breed Info Center is set up to educate and inform dog owners via breed. The focus of this website is to study how dogs innately behave and interact with other dogs.

The Dog Breed Info Center believes that when owners understand their dog’s natural behaviors they form a happier relationship between the two. They do a great job giving advice for both new and experienced dog owners.

You can browse Dog Breed Info Center’s library to research things like how to control a jumping dog; how to contain a reactive dog on a leash; how to successfully adopt a dog, etc.

dog breed

The Internet Loves a Dog Website

It’s true, the internet is a great hub for dog advice. You can find communities of people giving advice and looking out for fellow dog owners.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed as a new dog owner, hop online and expert advice is just around the corner.  Between, medical advice; buying food, treats, toys; or adding a new member to the family; you can now do it all online!

Browse our site for more pet care insight and advice.

The Risks of DIY Dog Grooming: 5 Reasons to Take Your Dog to a Pro

diy dog grooming

A recent pet owners survey revealed that as of 2017, there were about 89.7 million dogs owned in the US, an increase of more than 20 million since 2000. This massive number of dogs has led to an increase in the demand for quality pet care, with some people opting for DIY dog grooming.

But does choosing to groom your furry friend yourself come with any risks? Or should you opt to take your cute, lovable pet to a professional? 

In this article, we’ll tell you why it’s always a good idea to take your dog to a certified pet groomer. But first, what are the dangers associated with DIY dog care?  

DIY Dog Grooming Risks:

Risk 1: Shaving Your Dog at the Wrong Time

Sure, it does sound like a great idea to give your dog a haircut in the summer. After all, what’s better than getting rid of that excess hair when the heat hits the 80s?

Well, shaving your dog when the weather gets hot can interfere with their natural body temperature regulation. First of all, shaving at this time can make your dog extra prone to sunburn. Secondly, dogs like Pomeranians, Huskies, and German Shepherds are highly efficient when it comes to trapping air within their undercoat, which keeps them cool during the summer.

Moreover, shaving in the summer can result in damage to hair follicles. This leads to the coat growing back dull, or worse, in patchy places. The best alternative is to brush the dog regularly to remove any excessive undercoat.

Risk 2: DIY Dog Grooming Can Result in Washing Your Dog Improperly

Most homeowners know that their dogs need a regular bath, but where do they go wrong while doing so?

A common mistake many DIY pet care providers do while washing their dogs is washing inside their pets’ ears. So what’s wrong with that? Well, water inside the ears can create the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and lead to infection.

Another top risk with DIY dog grooming is leaving water inside the pet’s nose. This usually causes discomfort, irritation, reverse sneezing, and coughing. The best way to avoid that is by cleaning your pet’s entire head with a wet cloth.

Risk 3: Poor Rinsing Of Your Dog

Just as it is crucial to get it right when it comes to cleaning your dog, it’s essential to rinse your pet correctly. Why?

Because poor rinsing can cause severe hair loss, skin irritation, and matted fur. Dry shampoo will usually crust and mat or tangle your dog’s hair. Also, shampoo residue can leave the hair of your pet dull.

So how can you avoid this? The best way is to make sure that you use a decent level of water pressure while rinsing. Ensure that the water penetrates the layers of your pet’s undercoat.

Risk 4: Brushing a Wet Coat

When’s the right time to brush your dog’s hair? Many DIY dog groomers think they can do it after a bath. Unfortunately, brushing your dog’s hair after a bath can result in tighter knots and mats brought about by the water.

Most brushes grab at the pet’s wet hair and pull at their skin, causing discomfort and sometimes pain. It’s best to brush your dog’s fur before giving them a bath. If you have to brush their hair after a bath, ensure you dry the pet’s hair thoroughly and brush their hair gently and evenly.

Risk 5: Bathing Your Dog Daily 

Who doesn’t want to keep their beloved puppies as clean as possible? Unfortunately, giving your pet daily baths is the wrong way to go about it.

Bathing your dog every day will strip their coat of its natural oils, making the skin dry. So how often should you bathe your pet? Pro dog groomers recommend that once a month is sufficient, barring any skin issues.

DIY Dog Grooming

Choose a Professional Over DIY Dog Grooming:

Now that you’ve seen the risks associated with grooming your dog yourself, it’s time to talk about the better alternative: professional pet grooming services. What are some of the benefits you get from taking your dog to a pro dog groomer?

Benefit 1: They Have the Necessary Experience

Perhaps the biggest reason to take your dog to a pro dog groomer is that they have experience providing high-quality dog care. 

You can be sure that a professional will always be able to groom your dog with a lot more skill than you can do it at home. That’s why when it comes to professional dog grooming services, you never need to worry about any of the risks mentioned in the first section of this article.

Benefit 2: Pros Provide a Variety of Services

What are the particular needs of your dog? Most professional groomers are always able to tailor their services to suit those needs.

For instance, does your dog have a matted coat that needs proper shaving? Or would you like your dog to receive de-shedding treatment? A pro groomer will always do such treatments with expertise and the necessary care.

Pro groomers can also conduct medical checks on your pet, such as expressing their anal glands, checking ears for infection and treating them, and so on.

Benefit 3: Professionals Have the Necessary Tools for the Job

Grooming your dog at home requires you have the right equipment for the job. That means shopping around for all the tools, which can be a hustle for dog owners who don’t have the time.

Professional dog groomers, on the other hand, will always have all the right tools to take care of your pet’s grooming needs.

Benefit 4: Pros Insist On Your Dog Getting Vaccinated

When was your dog last vaccinated for kennel cough, rabies, and other infections? If you intend to take your dog to a professional groomer, you can almost be sure that you’ll need to provide proof of current vaccinations. That, of course, is good for your pet.

What if your dog isn’t vaccinated? Many groomers will not accept you as a client. 

Benefit 5: Pros Can Take Care of Your Dog’s Extraordinary Requirements

Does your dog have any special needs? Most groomers will request you to alert them of such things so they can offer better care to the pet. Let your groomer know if your dog has arthritis, for instance, or is hyperactive.

Providing as many details regarding your pet helps your professional groomer prepare better, so they know what to do should anything go wrong.

Final Thoughts: Avoid DIY Dog Grooming        

DIY dog grooming may sound like something you want to do often, but are the risks worth it? Even with the best-laid plans, an inexperienced groomer who decides to give dog grooming a try can cause a lot of damage. It’s always best to opt for professional dog grooming services.

Customer Spotlight – Dogs Paw Inc.

Dogs Paw

123Pet customers are passionate small business owners who excel at what they do. As part of our commitment to supporting and educating entrepreneurs, we aim to showcase our customers’ expertise in growing successful businesses.

We recently sat down with Deana Deitchler, owner of Dogs Paw Inc. in Park Rapids, Minnesota, to talk about all of the considerations that go into creating and running a full-service dog care center—from designing your dream workplace to planning for difficult situations.

Q: What is your favorite part about running a pet services business?

A: It’s hard to name just one thing because there are so many great parts to running this type of business. Of course, I love providing quality pet care—that’s number one—but I also love that, as a business owner, I get to choose who I work with, both in terms of clients and employees. Not everybody has a job where they get to design their work environment like that. I’m fortunate to have that sort of control.

dogs paw

Q: What advice would you give to other professionals who want to pursue careers in the pet business?

A: First and foremost, make sure you plan for difficult situations. When people enter the pet industry, they think it will be fun all the time, but that’s not the case when you’re handling animals. Even under careful supervision, pets can still get hurt or fight with one another. People are very attached to their pets, so you need to make sure you’re taking care of them. This means having a plan in action for dealing with tough situations when they occur. Develop a training program that covers standard operating procedures for new hires, so they know what the pet-safety protocols are for these sorts of situations from the start.

Q: What made you decide to invest in business management software?

A: I opened my business in 2008 and was doing everything on paper—from booking to billing—and chasing my tail to figure out appointments and financials every day. I was struggling to keep track of my customer base, especially because handwriting everything was getting messy.

In 2011, I started out with a simple version of 123Pet—bought out of a catalog—and have since added more features onto my program as they became available. I have evaluated other solutions over the years because I like to see what other people in the industry are using and make sure I still have the best available option. But each time I look, I end up sticking with 123Pet. As I’ve grown my company, the software has grown alongside it. The team behind 123Pet always tries to navigate the challenges of the industry and figure out what functions would be most helpful to users.

The 123Pet team also pays attention to what customers have to say and are able to stay ahead of our needs by developing new solutions to our problems. Every so often, I call with feedback, and they really listen. I’ve also met the staff at trade shows and they’re amazing. Their help and support are better than any of their competitors who tried to sell me software.

dogs paw

 

Q: Which 123Pet features are the most helpful to you and your employees?

A: The email and texting features are super simple ways to stay in direct contact with customers. They allow us to send notifications about promotions and appointment alerts, which has reduced the number of missed appointments.

The retail functions are also incredible. 123Pet is the only software that tracks inventory at the scale my company needs. It also allows me to easily export the data into an Excel document to analyze and share with other companies I’m looking to do business with. With this data, I can look back at the numbers from previous years to track my growth and compare how the business is currently doing.

My employees love how helpful the ticket creation features are, too. 123Pet makes it easy for them to create tickets and enter all the information they need—just like they’re working off a piece of paper in front of them. The software’s search functionality also offers several ways to find a ticket; you can search by customer or pet name and easily pull up the information you need in a timely manner.

Overall, 123Pet is very user-friendly, which allows my team to quickly deliver the quality service customers want and expect when they bring their pets to us.

To learn more about 123Pet and its features, visit our product page, or visit our blog to read more Customer Spotlights like this one.

Victor Rosado: Puerto Rican Cup

Victor Rosado

Bringing Together the Latin American Grooming Community with the Puerto Rican Cup

Here at 123Pet, we’re committed to supporting the global grooming community, and as part of that, we seek to showcase trailblazers in the industry and identify opportunities for continued education. We spoke with Victor Rosado, a member of the world champion GroomTeam USA and world-renowned grooming competition judge, to talk about his inspiring career and recent grooming competition, of which 123Pet is a sponsor.

On February 9-10, Victor hosted the first-ever Puerto Rico Cup on his home island of Puerto Rico, presenting grooming professionals in the region with an opportunity to demonstrate and hone their craft while gaining visibility. We sat down with Victor to discuss his passion for grooming and the impact he believes investing in the industry will have on his local community.

How did you turn your background in grooming into the accomplished career you have today?

I was a commercial groomer for years, working 24/7, until one day I decided to close my store because the work was taking over my life. I still wanted to groom dogs, but with a little more time for myself. My goal was to get certified as a Master Groomer, and I found out you can compete in grooming competitions and get certified at the same time, so I entered one and ended up winning. That’s when I caught the bug for competing, and I haven’t stopped since. I also lead seminars around the world and am an international grooming judge. No matter what, there is always passion and determination behind my work because I love what I do.

What inspired the idea of the Puerto Rico Cup?

The day Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico in 2017 was the day I was supposed to fly out for the Grooming World Championship in Belgium. Because of the disaster, it took me a while to make it to my team, but they never gave up on me. They helped in whatever ways they could, and we went on to win the Gold. That sort of team spirit was inspiring.

The island survived the hurricane, but it did cause a lot of damage and I wanted to help restore the area. In my career, I’ve been involved in countless grooming shows around the world but never one in Puerto Rico. I wanted to do something not just for Puerto Rico but also for the all of the Latin American countries. I wanted to contribute to morale and the local economy.

The Puerto Rico Cup – which I hope to continue for years to come – is like a grooming Olympics, with three main competitions. The namesake competition, the Puerto Rican Cup, is only for Puerto Ricans or people living in Puerto Rican communities around the world; the Latin American Cup is given not to an individual but to a country; and the Student Cup is open exclusively to grooming students. We had an award-winning panel of judges, and 150 awards totaling $20,000, which amounted to the biggest award ever to be offered at a grooming competition in Latin America. 

puerto rico cup

Is there a large grooming community in Puerto Rico?

Yes, and it’s growing – but there was never an event like this to bring everyone together. I wanted the Puerto Rico Cup to be a platform to present the strong grooming market in Puerto Rico, as well as a chance to show local groomers all the tools available to their business, like 123Pet.

puerto rico cup

What impact do you think this will have on the grooming community in Puerto Rico?

The goal of the event was to build up the grooming industry on the island. This event served as a platform for groomers to get inspired about their businesses and reach new professional goals. During the competition, contestants received supplies from sponsoring distributors, and I led grooming training sessions. I wanted to provide an opportunity for competitors to continue their education in the field, to elevate their skills and be better at doing what they love.

To learn more about 123Pet and its features, visit our product page, or visit our blog to read more spotlights like this one.

What is the Cost of Cat Boarding and is it Worth it?

You’ve packed your bags, filled up the cat’s food and water bowls, and pulled out a few of their favorite toys… so you’re all ready to go.  Not so fast! Leaving your cat alone at home isn’t always a good idea. So what are you supposed to do instead? Cat boarding! It’s easy, keeps your cat (and home) safe, and isn’t as expensive as you think. We’ve put together this guide to walk you through the cost of cat boarding. So let’s get started!

cost of cat boarding

What Is The Cost Of Cat Boarding?

The exact cost of boarding your cat depends on where you leave them and where you live. The average cat boarding cost is about $25, but some boarding services are a lot more expensive than others. Here’s a quick look at the different options, and prices, available.

Kennel

Some kennels will board cats as well as dogs. A kennel will give your cat a place to sleep, routine meals, and regular litter box cleaning.

This is the cheapest boarding option out there. You’ll only have to spend between $15 to $20.

However, if your cat doesn’t like dogs, this might not be a good choice for them. Being stuck with loud and constant barking can make the experience stressful and scary for your cat.

Cat Hotel

Cat hotels are much nicer than traditional catteries.

These hotels go above and beyond the basic care required to keep your cat healthy. Your cat will get their own space with a luxury bed, window perches, aquariums, and giant play areas. They may even get to socialize with other cats.

Some of these cat hotels will require you to bring your own food though. Make sure you check the feeding routines before you drop off your cat. While this boarding option is nice, it is anything but cheap.

You should expect to pay a minimum of $40 for a shared room (meaning your cat will be staying with other cats). If your cat needs its own room, the cost will only go up.

cat hotel

Cattery

A cattery is similar to a regular kennel, but they only take cats. This makes it a good place for people who want an inexpensive boarding option but don’t want their cat around dogs.

A cattery will also provide the same basic care as a kennel, and they cost about the same price.

Animal Hospital

Some animal hospitals also offer boarding services. This means there will be medically trained staff taking care of your cat at all times. If your cat does have a medical problem, the staff can treat them right away.

This gives many cat owners the peace of mind their kitty will stay safe and healthy while they’re gone.

However, this type of boarding service is often more expensive than other choices. If you thought $40 was a lot of money, you might have to spend more at an animal hospital.

At-Home Pet Sitter

You might not want to take your cat out of their own environment while you’re gone. This can help your cat stay comfortable and calm without you.

If you prefer this choice, you can hire an at-home pet sitter.

Many of these sitters will stay the night at your house to ensure they’re with your cat 24/7. But you can also hire someone to only check on your cat once or twice a day.

The cost of a pet-sitter depends on who you hire. Some pet sitters only charge $15 an hour, but others might charge as high as $40 an hour. You can search for pet sitters in your area on the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters.

Cost Of Cat Boarding Extras

The amounts listed above are the basic costs of boarding your cat, but there are often other expenses you should consider.

Sometimes these expenses are complementary, but in most cases, you’ll have to pay extra for them. That said, they are optional—most of the time anyway.

Here are some of the extra services that can make your cost go up.

Grooming

Most cat boarding facilities will offer grooming services. This can be as simple as a nail trimming or as detailed as a bath and a haircut.

cost of cat boarding

Flea Treatment

Fleas are a big problem at boarding facilities. If your cat has fleas, the facility might not accept them.

You can purchase a flea treatment to rid them of these pesky bugs before their stay. If your cat does spread fleas, you might have to pay to cover the cost of the cleaning process.

Pet Taxi

Some boarding facilities also offer pet taxi services.

If you can’t drop your cat off yourself, this taxi service will pick up your cat and drive them to the facility for you.

Early Drop off or Late Pick Up

Early drop off or late pick up can also cost you a few extra bucks. This price shouldn’t be more than $5 to $10, but it’s important not to overlook this cost.

Is the Cost of Cat Boarding Worth It?

So is the cost of cat boarding worth it? It depends.

Just because you can leave your cat at home by themselves for a few days doesn’t mean you should. Contrary to popular belief, cats do get lonely, confused, and anxious when they’re home alone for long periods of time. They might also get sick or hurt and have no way of getting the help they need.

Running out of food and water is also a concern, but it’s really the least of your concerns. You should always consider boarding your cat if you’ll be away from home for more than one night.

If you own a dog/cat boarding facility, you can learn more about our boarding software here!

How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth (And Why You Should Make It a Priority!)

how to brush your dog's teeth

A report by the American Pet Products Association concluded that 68% of American households keep pets. Cats and dogs are the most popular pets, with the number of pet dogs totaling 90 million.  If you love your dog, his health is a priority. But, how often do you think about your dog’s dental health? Cleaning your dog’s teeth should be part of their regular hygiene maintenance routine. Yet, dog owners hardly consider this crucial activity.  In honor of National Pet Dental Health Month, we have wrote tips on how to brush your dog’s teeth and why it’s essential.

How To Brush Your Dog’s Teeth:

1. Get the Right Toothbrush and Toothpaste

A canine toothbrush is almost similar to what we use. However, it has softer bristles, and it is smaller. If you don’t get a dog’s toothbrush in your local store, an infant’s toothbrush can suffice.

You can also use a finger toothbrush to ensure that you clean all the seemingly hard-to-reach points. Other than the toothbrushes, a clean washcloth or gauze can do the magic. A gauze is particularly a better option if your dog has sensitive gums or teeth.

On matters of toothpaste, you need to have a pet-friendly toothpaste that’s safe to swallow. Doggy toothpaste comes in a variety of flavors, from chicken to vanilla mint. With time you’ll know the flavor your pet prefers.

You’re now on the right track. You can even include your doggy’s brushing in one of your dog Instagram captions. You never know the number of people you’ll educate on dog brushing.

2. Orient Your Dog to Teeth Brushing

If you are expecting Fido to open his mouth wide on the first teeth brushing attempt, the joke is on you! Just like in children, you’ve got to introduce teeth brushing in dogs systematically. Attempt to clean your dog’s teeth when they are in their most calm state.

Start by putting a pea-sized toothpaste on your finger and let doggy taste. If your dog likes it, you’re probably in for a smooth ride. It will be easier to introduce the toothbrush at that point.

The gradual introduction of tooth brushing ought to start when a dog is still a puppy. It reduces the chances of rebelling. But if you want to start when your dog has already matured, it’s still possible to get the dog to enjoy tooth brushing.

While at it, consider an appropriate routine for brushing your dog’s teeth. You can choose to do it every day after dinner or breakfast. Over time, your dog will be familiar with the process.

how to brush dogs teeth

3. Open Doggy’s Mouth

Before you can open your dog’s mouth, it would be advisable to have your dog get used to the idea of your finger in the mouth. You can do this process a couple of times to make your dog comfortable with the whole idea.

As positive reinforcement, have treats on your hand so that your dog can open his mouth with no resistance. You can start by having him open his mouth for a few seconds and work towards increasing it gradually.

It won’t come as a surprise if your dog resists, but that shouldn’t mark the end of teeth cleaning. Just hold the dog’s muzzle until he relaxes. However, it would be wise to revisit the familiarization process to make your dog more comfortable.

4. Brush the Teeth Gently

Use gentle and circular motions when brushing a dog’s teeth. Try as much as possible to reach the back molars and canines as they are highly prone to plaque build-up. With at least a minute or two, you’ll have brushed off the plaque.

Don’t worry if your dog resists brushing the inside part of the teeth. Their tongues always clean any debris in those areas. As a rule of thumb, start slowly and increase the thoroughness with time.

5. Reward Your Dog

If you check out some of the interesting facts about dogs, wagging a tail is one of those aspects you can’t miss. It’s usually a sign of happiness. After a brushing session, positive reinforcement will make your dog wag his tail in excitement as they look forward to the next session.

how to brush your dogs teeth

Importance of Brushing Your Dog’s Teeth

The prevalence of periodontal diseases in dogs is at 80% in the US, with the majority of dogs being less than two years old. Brushing your dog’s teeth regularly is one of the most effective preventive measures against this disease. With constant brushing, you’ll deal with the plaque build-up that ultimately leads to periodontal disease.

When you get home, the last thing you want is dealing with doggy’s halitosis as they welcome you back. Bad breath is one of the major signs of poor dental hygiene. With teeth brushing, the odor from your dog’s mouth will be no more.

Once you know how to brush your dog’s teeth, you will be in a great position to save their internal organs. Bacteria from oral diseases can get absorbed in the dog’s bloodstream, leading to liver, kidney, and heart damage. Regular brushing of your dog’s teeth will prevent dental infections, which ultimately spread to the other parts of the body.

When You Know How to Brush Your Dog’s Teeth, You’ll Enjoy the Process

If you love your pet, brushing his teeth should be a priority. Learn how to brush your dog’s teeth and get him to like it while he is still young. You will save his canine from several oral diseases, including periodontal.

Your vet can guide you when getting a toothbrush and toothpaste for your dog. When you follow the right procedure, brushing your dog teeth will feel relaxed. It might be complex at first, but with time, you’ll get the drill.

Are you a kennel, groomer, or another pet-oriented business owner? Contact us today for a quote on all your software needs.

Choosing The Right Leash For Your Dog

dog walk

Once you get a dog, giving it as much as it gives you is important. This means that you need to take care of your dog by providing them with a balanced diet, enough water, and the right amount of attention, too. Exercise is also essential for them, the only problem is that most owners have trouble learning how to walk a dog or they don’t know what leash to use. Read on to learn about the different types of dog leashes.

Choosing the Right Leash

Finding the right leash for your dog is the first step to training them. This is because the leash you will use will have a greater impact on your training experience than you think. Different leash types help you control your dog in different ways.

Most people think control leashes are the best for training dogs for walks. Leashes with built-in shock collar controls, ones that prick your dog, and leashes that tighten the collar are among these leashes. This will work if you’re in a rush to train your dog but will have adverse side effects, too.

Among the unintended effects will be the dog’s aversion to leashed walks. It can make them dislike the walks if you use these on them. Use these standard leashes instead to train your dogs.

1. Standard Dog Leash

The most basic leash is often the best choice in teaching your dog how to walk. This is because they’re long enough to restrain your dog and are durable enough to keep your dogs in check. They’re also versatile enough to use for adult dogs and puppies.

The main issue with these leashes is the lack of features. This forces dog owners to adjust to doing what they can to adjust to their dogs. It can be a chore to do so when you have an adult dog to worry about.

They’re the most uncontrollable if they’re new to leashed walking. They may even break the leash depending on the breed of the dog.

how to walk a dog

2. Harness

The harness-type leash is a great choice if your dog is energetic. A regular leash with a normal collar can choke an excited dog. This has no permanent damage but can inconvenience your dog.

This also allows you to have more control over your dog. A harness often wraps your dog’s torso instead of their neck. This makes it perfect for dogs who need much guidance during the walks.

It’s also perfect for smaller dog breeds since they often slip out of regular collars. Some harnesses are easy to adjust for the different dog sizes, too.

how to walk a dog

3. Chain Leashes

This leash type allows you to replace standard leashes for something stronger. It’s a great way to keep dogs who destroy their leashes in check. Most dogs have a knack to chew on leashes if they feel like it’s too short.

This causes most leashes to have a short life expectancy with these dogs. They will understand that the new leash won’t break no matter what they do. This will also help them remove the bad habit of chewing on leashes.

how to walk a dog

4. Retractable Leashes

This is perfect for dogs who have short bursts of energy. Most dogs are often lazy until something catches their eye. This is great for controlling whether the stimuli encourage approaching.

If it’s something that’s not healthy for them, you’ll have no problem keeping them close. A retractable leash can confuse a dog, though. They may expect to have more length behind them when they rush into things.

This can harm their necks when they do this. What’s great about this is that you can train this out of them. All you need to do is to let them assume that the line is always taut when using these leashes.

how to walk a dog

5. Bike Leashes

If your dog is too energetic for you to keep up with, get yourself a bike leash instead of a regular one. As the name suggests, it’s a leash that you can attach to your bike frame. It also has an adjustable length while the dog runs with you.

Getting used to this leash will take time for your dog. You must do what you can to help them understand how the walk will go if you want to use this leash. Once they learn how to keep up with you, this will become the best way for you to give your dog some exercise.

bike leash

How To Walk A Dog & Keep Them Focused

Learning how to walk a dog involves keeping them focused on the walk. Dogs will run after everything that they find interesting. Training your dog to ignore them and focus on the walk will make the experience less harrowing for you.

Luring their attention back on the path with a treat is a good way to do this. It can also reward them for ignoring the different stimuli around them. They’ll get the gist of soon enough and will keep their attention on the walk.

It will take them a long time to get used to focusing on the walk. If you don’t have time for this, you can take your dog to the local pet groomers. They often have training businesses that can accommodate your needs.

How To Walk A Dog & Stop Them Pulling

This is the most common problem with dogs during a walk. They lunge and pull to steer you towards a specific direction. The trick to removing this is to turn yourself into a tree.

Keep yourself motionless as much as you can. This will teach your dog that nothing will come from their eagerness to go in a specific direction. Pulling on the leash will hurt your dog, so refrain from doing so.

Learn How to Walk a Dog Today

Walking a dog isn’t as easy as most people make it out to be. You need the right leash and training to keep your dog disciplined during the walk. Learn how to walk a dog and take yours on a stroll today!

Want to learn more about dog training? Check out our lists and guide to continue discovering all the tips you need, like this one discussing if dogs can see ghosts!

Customer Spotlight – Pet-Agree Pet Services

As 123Pet embarks on a new decade of supporting and educating entrepreneurs, we want to continue showcasing the passionate small business owners – and the inspiring companies they’ve built – that our software has empowered over the years. One such owner is Alicen Ingle, founder of Pet-Agree Professional Pet Services in Jasper, Indiana, who celebrates the 10-year anniversary of her first return customer this month.

“We celebrate my first return customer instead of the day we opened our doors because that’s what having a successful business means to me – customers who value your work and keep coming back,” she says.

For our latest Customer Spotlight, we sat down with Alicen to talk about how she’s evolved her company from a one-woman show to a nationally-recognized grooming facility, and how 123Pet has helped her create the customer-focused company she’s envisioned from the start.

Q: Tell us a bit about your business and how it’s grown over the years.

A: I own a pet grooming, lodging, supply and training facility. I started out as a one-woman show of a single mom, and now, ten years later, I have six employees and have served over three thousand pets in this vicinity. Years ago, when I first started, there was only one nationally recognized grooming program (Nash Grooming Academy) and now I’m affiliated with it as an instructor and as a satellite test site. In fact, I’m the only teaching facility in Indiana to be affiliated as such. I’m also a state-certified groomer, a master cat groomer, a master cat grooming certifier and the first AKC S.A.F.E-certified salon in Indiana. Suffice to say, I’ve come a long way.

Pet Agree

Q: What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced as a small business owner?

A: In the beginning it’s hard. You start a business because you want it to be profitable, and you want to design a certain quality of life for yourself, but that doesn’t happen right away. When I opened my business, I was charging less than half of what my services were worth so that I could get people’s business. It took two years before I could pay myself a salary.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who wants to start their own business?

A: Look at your target market and figure out where you fit in. When I moved to Jasper, local groomers didn’t actually have any education about grooming. They thought it was fine to just pick up a clipper and groom their pets themselves, so I saw an opportunity to educate the community on the skills needed to do a successful job. I also learned that many local groomers were turning away large dogs and cats; two types of clients I knew I could handle. Because of this, when I first opened, I specialized in grooming large pets to meet my specific market needs.

Q: Is there anything people should keep in mind when working in the pet industry?

A: Loving animals isn’t enough to succeed here. In interviews, people always say, “I love dogs!” but grooming isn’t just about spending time with dogs. It’s hard – and often dirty – work. Pet Agree

Q: What made you decide to invest in business management software?

A: About two years in, I needed a more streamlined, digital appointment book because I just couldn’t manage all the paper anymore. At that time, 123Pet was the only software available, but it was perfect for what I needed as a one-person company.

Q: Has 123Pet helped you grow your business?

A: The software itself has really helped me implement my vision for the company. I love the fact that my groomers can look at the bookings themselves and know where they need to be, and meanwhile, someone can stay at the front of house to work and communicate with customers. It helps the workflow, which lets us focus on and meet our customers’ needs.

The 123Pet program also grows with you. You can pick different levels of investment, and you can change your plan monthly as your business changes, which, naturally, it does. The software technicians are great at helping you manipulate the program to fit your vision.

123Pet also saves me personal time because it takes care of all the tasks I used to have to do by hand. I can focus on balancing my life now that I don’t have to have my eyes glued to the business all the time.

Pet Agree

Q: Which 123Pet features are most helpful to you and your employees?

A: The mobile aspect is a huge help with handling client communications, especially after hours. I can go into the appointment book on the app from home and instantly make any adjustments, so even when we’re closed, I can still be working.

The reporting functions are also wonderful, and they help me do retail “right.” With them, I can run reports on sales and productivity and manage inventory, so I know I’m meeting my benchmarks.

To learn more about 123Pet and its features, visit our product page, or visit our blog to read more Customer Spotlights like this one.

Do Dogs Dream? Everything You Need To Know About The Science Of Doggie Sleep

There’s a reason dogs are considered man’s best friend. We share a lot in common with our furry friends, from their unique personalities to our love of food, and so much more. But one question that many dog lovers often ask is ‘do dogs dream?’ I mean, they sleep 12 to 14 hours per day, so something must be going on there.

It’s nice to imagine that our canine companions are having dreams like we are, and the thought is even comforting. But is it true? There are many scientists trying to find exactly that answer, and what they’ve come up with might pleasantly surprise you. So do dogs dream, and if so, what do dogs dream about? Here’s what we know.

Do Dogs Dream?

As dog owners, we’ve all seen our dogs twitch or even act out running while they’re asleep. This can sometimes last for a split second, or even minutes! When dogs do this, many times we’ll assume that they’re dreaming. Well, it turns out that the assumption is probably correct.

Science has long pointed to many animals being able to dream, including animals as small as fruit flies and rats. Considering that dogs are much smarter and have more sophisticated brains than rats, it’s no surprise that dogs dream, too.

Dogs are just as capable as humans at achieving REM sleep, which is where the majority of dreams happen. It’s at this stage that dogs are more likely to move their legs and react to their dreams, as this is the deepest state of dreaming.

What Do Dogs Dream About?

So what exactly are dogs dreaming about when they’re kicking their little legs or barking in their sleep? The answer lies in the pons, which is the part of the brain that controls your movement while you sleep. In puppies, just as well as babies, the pons is underdeveloped, leading to a lot more movement.

To try and figure out what dogs might be dreaming about, researchers temporarily disabled the pons in certain dogs to see what their movements might be like. In perhaps predictable results, the dogs kicked their legs like they were running and barked like they were chasing things.

Basically, dogs dream about doing dog things. We don’t know exactly what they’re dreaming about, but chasing small animals and playing wouldn’t be unreasonable guesses.

do dogs dream

All Dogs Dream Differently

All dogs dream, but not all dogs dream the same. The science suggests that large dogs have longer but less frequent dreams, while small dogs have many shorter dreams. Puppies also tend to dream more than adult dogs, likely because they’re taking in and experiencing so much.

Something as small as a chihuahua, for example, has a new dream about every ten minutes while sleeping. A golden retriever, on the other hand, may dream as little as once every 90 minutes of sleep.

A dog’s life experiences heavily impact their dreams as well. Like humans, dogs likely dream about what they experience in life, so if your dog loves chasing birds or playing fetch, it’s probably going to have regular dreams about just that. Do you think Instagram-famous pets dream about taking selfies?

What About Nightmares?

So if they can have dreams, then do dogs have nightmares, too?

The unfortunate answer is yes, and you may have even seen your dog experiencing a bad dream before. They might bark, growl, or whimper in their sleep, and it might even be tempting to wake them up and help them out.

However, you should never wake a dog from a nightmare, just as you shouldn’t wake a person from one. It can be confusing waking up from a bad dream, and it always comes with the possibility of not knowing where you are or what you’re doing.

This is the same for dogs. Your pooch may love you more than anything in the world, but when they wake up suddenly from that nightmare they’ll enter defense mode, and may even bite you. For your own safety, you should let your pup get through the nightmare on its own, no matter how hard it may be to ignore it.

If you want your dog to have fewer nightmares, just treat them right. Give them a cozy, comfortable place to sleep, and lots of love. But of course, why wouldn’t you do that anyway?

do dogs dream

Does Your Dog Dream About You?

We’ve established that dogs dream about what they experience. So do they dream about their owners? One psychologist from Harvard Medical School has a very reassuring answer. She says: “Since dogs are generally extremely attached to their human owners, it’s likely your dog is dreaming of your face, your smell, and of pleasing or annoying you.”

That’s a pretty cute thought though. Next time you see your dog dreaming, it could be about you! Just make sure you spend a lot of time with your pooch, and the chances will definitely increase.

Conclusion

If you’ve ever asked yourself, “What do dogs dream about?” hopefully you’ve found some answers here. Even though we can’t know exactly what our dogs are dreaming about, it’s comforting to know that they are dreaming, especially when they’re dreaming about what they love.

If you ever needed another reason to love dogs, this is definitely one of them.

Check out our other articles for more on dogs, and our shop page for an assortment of grooming and boarding related services. Also, feel free to contact us with any questions, concerns, or suggestions. We’d be glad to hear them.