Happy  International Assistance Dog Week

Posted On: 08-03-2015

Happy  International Assistance Dog Week!  We want to take time this week to recognize all of the hardworking, faithful dogs who help ease the lives of people with limitations every day.  These dogs transform the lives of their human partners with physical and mental disabilities by being a guide, an assistant, and a friend.

assistance dogSo what are the different types of assistance dogs and  what do they do? According to Assistancedogweek.org, these are the different types of assistance dogs and their functions:

Guide Dogs – Assist people with vision loss, leading these individuals around physical obstacles and to destinations such as seating, crossing streets, entering or exiting doorways, elevators and stairways.

Service Dogs – Assist people with disabilities with walking, balance, dressing, transferring from place to place, retrieving and carrying items, opening doors and drawers, pushing buttons, pulling wheelchairs and aiding with household chores, such as putting in and removing clothes from the washer and dryer.

Hearing Alert Dogs – Alert people with a hearing loss to the presence of specific sounds such as doorbells, telephones, crying babies, sirens, another person, buzzing timers or sensors, knocks at the door or smoke, fire and clock alarms.

Seizure Alert/Seizure Response Dogs – Alert or respond to medical conditions, such as heart attack, stroke, diabetes, epilepsy, panic attack, anxiety attack, post-traumatic stress and seizures.

Medical Alert/Medical Response Dogs – Alert to oncoming medical conditions, such as heart attack, stroke, diabetes, epilepsy, panic attack, anxiety attack, and post traumatic stress disorder.

Don’t these dogs do amazing work! Take some time this week to celebrate what these dogs do and how the better the lives of their handlers!


Summer Travel Tips

Posted On: 06-22-2015

For many, summer is vacation time!   If you plan on taking a trip with your pet this summer, here are a few tips from America’s Family Expo.

traveling with dogsPrepare your pet.  Traveling with a sick pet isn’t enjoyable for anyone.  Have your pet get a check-up before you leave on vacation may help you avoid sickness.  And while you are at the vet, make sure you are up-to-date on your vaccinations and have your vet issue a health certificate.  Proper paperwork may be needed when crossing state lines and especially country lines.  Plus, having your medical records as well as your vet’s contact information may come in handy if your pet happens to have a medical issue while away.

Properly ID your pet.  Whether or not you micro-chip your pet, make sure you attach a temporary ID tag to your pet’s collar that lists your cell phone number, email address, and any other contact information that might be helpful in contacting you while away from home.  Having a recent picture of your pet with you may also be helpful.  While we hope your pet does not stray away while on vacation, it is best to be prepared!

Make a list of what you need.  Some things to pack along may include: water and water bowls, a leash, toys, grooming supplies, bedding, litter and a litter box, and any necessary medications.  Also, be sure to pack enough pet food and treats, especially if your pet eats a specific brand that may not be available where you are going.

Practice car safety.  You may hate restraining your pet, but it is important both you and your pet’s safety.  Not having your pet restrained many not only cause him or her to get hurt a lot easier, but can also be a distraction to you and lead to an accident.  There are many different options that allow your pet to be restrained comfortably.  Travel crates, vehicle barriers, car seats, and seat belts are some of the options that are available.  But before you hit the road, let your pet get comfortable and familiar with the restraints so that your trip is less stressful for everyone.

What tips do you have for traveling with your pet?  Please share them with us on our Facebook page.

Enjoy your vacation!


Kid’s Aquarium Contest

Posted On: 05-05-2015

A big congratulations to all of the participants of the Kid’s Aquarium Contest! Every year, the participants use their creativity to come up with some great entries, and we are always thrilled to see the completed environments.  Here are some of the aquariums:

Natural Category, Group Group I (ages 5, 6, 7 & 8)

Natural Group 1 1st Place

Natural Group 2  2nd Place Ages 9-12

Natural Category, Group II (ages 9, 10, 11 & 12)Natural Group 2 1st Place

Natural Group 2 2nd place

Natural Category, Group III (ages 13, 14, 15 & 16)

Natural Group 3 1st Place

Natural Group 3 2nd place

Best in Show – 2nd Place

Best in Show 2nd Place

Creative Category, Group I (ages 5, 6, 7 & 8)

Creative Group 1 1st Place

Creative Group 1 2nd place age 5-8

Creative Group 1 3rd Place

Creative Category, Group II (ages 9, 10, 11 & 12)

Creative Group 2 1st Place

Creative Category, Group III (ages 13, 14, 15 & 16)

Creative Group 3 1st Place

Creative Group 3 2nd Place

Creative Group 3 3rd Place age 13-16