Category Archives: Pets

Advice for all your furry, feathered, feline, &/or four-legged friends…and more!

Things You Need to Know Before Buying an Exotic Pet

Hedgehogs are becoming more and more popular as pets, but there are some things to consider before you decide to have it as a pet. One of the obvious reasons is that when they feel threatened the curl into a prickly ball; also, if you prefer quiet nights, they might not be a pet for you, they are nocturnal, so they sleep through the day and are very active at night. In addition, they make various squealing and sniffing noises. Another important fact to keep in mind is that they carry diseases that are contagious to people, so make sure to wash your hands and keep their cages clean.


Flickr Creative Commons: Hands Optek

Sugar Gliders got their name because they like to eat anything sweet and they also have gliding membrane. They make good pets and are not very difficult to keep, but like any other pet they require attention and care. There are couple things to know about them, they cannot be potty trained, but their habits are very predictable and they are very clean animals and do not require bathing. Also, they are nocturnal animals as well and will be up at night. They are pretty clever little animals and bond with their owners as much as dogs and cats do, it does take time for them to get used to though.


Flickr Creative Commons: Ryan Lee

Ferrets are also very intelligent. They also are very social and bond with their owners, but they do require training and a lot of attention. As to the supplies, you will need a cage, a litter box, a hammock and sleep sack and, of course, a lot of toys. They usually need two types of bed because they are very prone to heatstroke and having bed options lets them regulate their body heat. They are very playful and will need to have about two hours out of cage time.


Flickr Creative Commons: Scott Oves

Chinchillas, unlike other mentioned animals, are very low maintenance and don’t have a very distinct smell. They are relatively easy to train and develop strong habits, so you can train them to play at a specific time etc. For the most part, they are cute little animals that make great pets, but they are not for everyone. Children should be cautious with them because they will bit if squeezed too tight. They should not be let running around or they will chew everything. Also, if they are not trained and used to you early in their age, they might be skittish and aggressive.


Flickr Creative Commons: Jennifer McGinn

As you can tell, they are cute pets to have, but before committing to either one of them, make sure that an animal fits your lifestyle and you have time and energy to take care of them!


All photos used under this license.

How to do Showings with Pets

Most people love pets, but they might still be scared if those pets are not their own. When it comes to selling a home and showings, buyers and their agents need to feel welcome to look at the property without danger or distractions. So even if we love our pets and think they are no danger to others, they might still bark and growl. And we are not talking just  about dogs, same goes for cats, birds, and reptiles. Here are some ideas on what to do when selling a home and preparing for showings. 

First and foremost, it is always a good idea to talk to your pet’s vet and discuss your plans; moving is not only stressful for the home owners, but for pets as well, especially for older pets.  

It might not be what you would like to do, but the best way is to remove them from the house. If it is not possible, the next best thing is to find someone who will take them for a period of time and who help take care of them. And if this is not a possibility also, then put them in a contained space and let a buyer and their agent know about it ahead of time or buyer a pet friendly cage to keep them in and make sure to let them know where in the house the cage will be. Also, it might be a good idea if the agent can acquaint themselves with the pet prior to showings to make it less stressful for everyone, including pets.

Also, prior to showings, make sure to repair any pet damages and remove pet odors and stains. Most of the time smells play a huge role when doing showing, buyer’s might be turned off by the smell and start thinking about the cost to replace carpets etc. and it might be the reason they pass on a home. So, make sure you are well prepared!


Flickr Creative Commons: Jaimy Lantzy (CC BY 2.0)
All photos used under this license.

Foods your Dog should Never Eat


Flickr Creative Commons: localpups (CC BY 2.0)

Since fruits and vegetables are healthy for humans, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is the case for our pets. They might have from mild to very severe reactions to some of the vegetables and fruits.

Grapes/Raisins are known to be toxic to dogs. They contain canine which can cause kidney failure. If your dog had more than a couple grapes, it can be saved if you take them to a veterinarian right away! You can also try giving your dog an activated charcoal if you have any.

Onions and Garlic. According to Banfield pet hospital onions and garlic belong to the Allium plant species and if your pet eats one of the plants from those species, they will end up with anemia, which, in turn, may damage organs and lead to organ failure.

Cherries. Some say cherries are good for dogs as long as they don’t ingest leaves or seeds since they contain cyanogenic glucosides, which can cause difficulty breathing and shock.

Apple cores. As with cherries, apples contain cyanogenic glucosides as well, so just make sure to  kepp them away and not feed them seeds or stems.

Raw potatoes. Opinions are split on this one, some say it’s dangerous if dogs eat raw potatoes, some say it’s fine. It might be dangerous if it is sprouting and has green coloration; either way it’s better to keep them away just in case.








Pets for Christmas?

The Holiday season is here and everyone is getting ready to spend time with their loved ones. Some are still finishing last minute gift shopping, and, while there are many Christmas gift options, many are tempted to give a cute pet as a Christmas gift.

According to Hellen Woodward Animal Center, pets are being adopted during holidays more than at any other time of the year. One of the animal societies came up with a promotion called “Homes for the Holidays”; they have volunteers dressed as Elves and Santa’s who deliver pets for Christmas. While this sounds like a very endearing idea and many think that giving a pet as a surprise is a wonderful gift, there are couple things to keep in mind.

First and foremost, make sure you know that a pet is wanted; not everyone wants a pet or has time or money to take care of them. If you are getting a pet for your kids or someone who wants a pet, figure out in advance what type, size and breed your child or family member wants.  Also, make sure your house is ready and you have all the needed supplies such as food, bed, leash, and carrier.

If you still want it to be a surprise, but not sure what breed they want,  you can get a shelter gift certificate or pet promise certificate, that way they can choose the pet they want and that best fits their lifestyle. This would be the best way to ensure that no pets are affected.

This is not meant to keep you from buying such a special gift, but to make you aware of the drawbacks you may encounter.

Happy Holidays!


Flickr Creative Commons: starsandspirals. All photos used under this license.


Sharing a Thanksgiving Meal with Your Pet?

Flickr Creative Commons: geraldbrazell

Flickr Creative Commons: geraldbrazell

Holidays are fast approaching and it is time for many holiday dinners. It is such a fun time for the whole family, but we all know that our little companions will be begging for some table scraps and we won’t be able to resist, but let’s make sure we are careful and avoid giving them harmful foods.

If you feed your pet some turkey, make sure it is well cooked and boneless. Cooked bones splinter, so it is better to avoid giving them poultry or fish bones. Also, turkey should be skinless, since the skin is very fatty and is hard to digest.

This might be a surprise, but onions are toxic to cats and dogs. Eating even 1/4 of a cup can make can make them sick. Eating onions can cause small clumps and red blood cells and might lead to anemia.

As many know, chocolate can be fatal to cats and dogs, but grapes and raisins are toxic to them as well, and can cause kidney damage. It is better to keep all the sweets out of their reach.

If you still give your pet Thanksgiving leftovers, make sure it’s a very small amount of safe food like skinless/boneless turkey, plain carrots, mashed potatoes, or gravy that is free of onion and spices.

All photos are used under this license.


How to Help Your Pet Adjust to a New Home

Moving and switching to a new environment can be very stressful for pets. Some pets will become more clingy and will follow you everywhere you go, others will hide and stay isolated. There are a couple of things pet owners can do to minimize their stress and make the transition as smooth as possible.


It is important to allow your pet to get used to a carrier. There are a couple of ways to help them with that. You can place their toys next to it, treats, or even their plate, and then slowly move the plate to the back of the carrier so they step in a carrier. Also, you should start putting out moving boxes couple weeks prior, so they see them and get used to as well.


It would be best to leave your pet at a friend’s or family place for the day, but if that is not an option, then you will need to put them in a separate room so they cannot escape and only then put in a carrier; try to sit close to the dog to make them feel safe during the move. Also, make sure to not overfeed them.

Settling in a new place

First of all, make sure your home is safe for pets. When you get to your new place, get them out in a quiet room and spend some time playing with them. Don’t forget to bring their favorite toys, food, treats etc. Also, put them in similar places they were in a previous home. It will help them adjust quicker. Remember that pets can pick up on their owners mood, so it is important to follow your normal routine, so they know that everything is back to normal. Keep the same feeding and playtime schedule; consistency is very important. If it’s possible, take a couple days off to stay at home.

Take care of your furry friends and share with us if you have any tips to help keep pets safe and stress free as much as possible during the move.



Pet-Care During Fall


Flickr Creative Commons: Michael Gil

Fall is probably the best time to get outside with your pups. There is no heat to deal with, the air is fresh and crisp and you can take longer walks and enjoy fall colors.  But there are some things to keep in mind, so here are some tips to keep your companion safe.

As we all know, fall is the mushroom season, and a lot of mushrooms can be toxic for dogs. It is difficult to tell which ones are toxic and which are not, so the best way to keep your dog safe is to avoid areas where mushrooms are growing.

Another danger is snakes. Fall is the season when snakes are getting ready for brumation (become less active) and they might become a little “grumpy”, so pet owners should know where and what kind of snakes can be found in their area.

Since it’s getting cooler outside, rodents are heading indoors and the use of rodenticide increases. It can be fatal for pets, so be cautious!

Fall is known to be an allergy season, ragweed and mold are the most common allergens, and yes, dogs get allergies too. So watch for sneezing and scratching.

And last but no least, some plants are toxic to dogs as well, so keep your pooch away from Poinsettia, Mistletoe, Amaryllis etc.

Keep your furry friends safe and healthy!

Upcoming Twin Cities Dog Adoption Events

Having a dog in your life is beneficial in so many ways. They bring unlimited joy and smiles to their owners. There are so many dogs in need of safe, loving homes. Why not do something that is good for you, your family, and a canine?

Minnesota has an overwhelming number of pet rescue organizations, and it can be difficult to know where to start. It is very important to find an dog that will fit your lifestyle and personality. The best way to find the perfect pet is to attend adoption events and meet your options! There are adoption events all year round, in cities all over Minnesota. Some events have pets for adoption from a single rescue organization, and some feature pets from multiple rescues! Some events have cats for adoption too!

Here are links to calendars for events going on this fall sorted by rescue!

Flickr Creative Commons: Sonia Su

Flickr Creative Commons: Sonia Su

Dog Adoption Events:

1. Homeward Bound Dogs – Held at PetCo and PetSmart stores around Minnesota

2. Second Hand Hounds – Held at Chuck &  Don’s and PetSmart stores around Minnesota

3. Underdog Rescue – Held at It’s a Pet’s Life stores around Minnesota

4. Ruff Start Rescue – Held at Chuck &  Don’s and PetSmart stores around Minnesota

5. Pet Haven – Held at Chuck &  Don’s and PetCo stores around Minnesota

6. Underdog Rescue – Held at It’s a Pet’s Life stores around Minnesota

7. Safe Hands Rescue – Held at Fetch Delivers Warehouse in Minneapolis

Let us know your adoption success stories! Share your photos with us!


Photos used under this license.







8 Frozen Treat Recipes for Fido

Keeping your doggy pal both occupied and cool in the summer is a challenge! Healthy treats and activities for your dog can be expensive and time consuming. If you are looking for a way to help your dog chill out in this heat, these DIY frozen dog treats are easy and cheap to make! Give them a try, your pooch will thank you!

Flickr Creative Commons: Tricia

Flickr Creative Commons: Tricia



1. Frozen banana treats from ModernDog

Steve Hopson

Flickr Creative Commons: Steve Hopson

Bananas, peanut butter, yogurt, MMM! Great afternoon snack for your doggy, high in protein and potassium!


2. Frozen Coconut Mango Pineapple treats from doggy dessert chef

Flickr Creative Commons: Jun

Flickr Creative Commons: Jun

These tropical treats will have your doggy doing the hula! Just be careful to watch the sugar content of that dried fruit!


3. Peanut Butter Pupsicles from The Humane Society of the United States

Flickr Creative Commons: Denise Krebs

Flickr Creative Commons: Denise Krebs

Peanut butter is perhaps a dog’s favorite snack! These are sure to be a hit!


4. Dog Ice Cream from FirstHomeLoveLife

Flickr Creative Commons: edwin

Flickr Creative Commons: edwin

Who doesn’t love ice cream? We guarantee your pup will love this frozen treat.


5. Yogurt, Blueberry and Basil Frozen Treats from Good Dogs & Co

Flickr Creative Commons: FromSandToGlass

Flickr Creative Commons: FromSandToGlass

These unique dog treats are full of antioxidants and taste great! (yes.. they are human friendly too!)


6. Watermelon Popsicle from Golden Woofs


Flickr Creative Commons: Annie 

Nothing says summer more than watermelon popsicles!

You and your pooch can enjoy these tasty treats together!





7. Frozen Apple Treats from Irresistible Pets

Flickr Creative Commons: Dane

Flickr Creative Commons: Dane

Apples are a great treat for your dog! These are perfect for those hot summer days!


8. Spinach Smoothie Pupsicles by Cooking with Curls


Flickr Creative Commons: Stewart Butterfield

Last but not least, these pupsicles are good for your pooch’s tummy and teeth! Spinach, coconut, banana, YUM! (Your doggy might share with you, but don’t count on it!)


What are your canine’s favorite summer treats? Let us know if you gave any of these a try!


All photos used under this license.

12 Dog Breeds Suitable for City Living

Yearning for a canine companion, but living in a concrete jungle? We feel your pain. Here are 12 dog breeds that, according to the AKC, have low to medium energy levels, which we have deemed to be city friendly. These pooches only need a little bit of exercise each day, and with city homes as small as ever, won’t make your place feel too cramped! Take them outside the city though, and they’ll love to join you for a (short) hike!


1. Affenpischer

Flickr Creative Commons: Ger Dekker

Flickr Creative Commons: Ger Dekker

The Affenpinscher walks with confidence, and has a notoriously remarkable sense of humor. Making friends everywhere they go, the Affenpinscher is sure to improve your social life while on walks through the city.


2. Boston Terrier

Flickr Creative Commons: Tricia

Flickr Creative Commons: Tricia

These little guys have brains so big, their eyes bug out! But really, in all seriousness, Boston Terriers are clever dogs who love to play. These goofy dogs will make your home a happier place.


3. Japanese Chin


Flickr Creative Commons: Krysta

The Japanese Chin is a loyal dog who is very affectionate towards its owners. While on walks, these dogs will pay no attention to strangers. If you are looking for a dog who minds its own business, the Japanese Chin could be for you!


4. Airedale Terrier

Flickr Creative Commons: Lulu Hoeller

Flickr Creative Commons: Lulu Hoeller

While the friendly Airedale Terrier isn’t overly rambunctious, they do need tasks to keep them occupied. If locked up in an apartment all day, make sure to leave activities like these for your canine pal.


5. Corgi

Flickr Creative Commons: Mei

Flickr Creative Commons: Mei

Corgis are alert, loving pups that are great with kids (though they might try to herd them). A true family dog, the Corgi will bark to make sure you aware of intruders in your home. For this reason, this breed would do best in a stand-alone home as to not aggravate apartment neighbors.


6. Basset Hound

Flickr Creative Commons: Don Debold

Flickr Creative Commons: Don DeBold

These charming doggies are as lazy as they come. The Basset Hound will spend most of the day snoring and dreaming of rabbits. They do like to get out now and then, and will occasionally let out a howl or two.


7. Bulldog

Flickr Creative Commons: Carodean Road Designs

Flickr Creative Commons: Carodean Road Designs

The Bulldog might look like an intimidating creature, but really, they are just slobbery wrinkle-faced cuddle monsters. They are the 4th most popular dog breed for a reason!


8. Maltese

Flickr Creative Commons: ErnieXavier

Flickr Creative Commons: ErnieXavier

This little furry guy is a Maltese. They are gentle and friendly, which makes them especially suited for families with young children. They are also good for those tiny downtown apartments!


9. Puli

Flickr Creative Commons: Anita Ritenour

Flickr Creative Commons: Anita Ritenour

Puli’s, with their highly recognizable dreadlocks, are a loving breed. They are fit to be herding dogs, but love being with their family as well. If you can get this guy out and about every day, he will do well living the city life.


10. Cavalier King Charles

Flickr Creative Commons: leisergu

Flickr Creative Commons: leisergu

The easily trained Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is small enough for your condo, but has a heart big enough for your entire family. This breed’s disposition is as sweet as their little faces.


11. Chinese Crested

Flickr Creative Commons: DM

Flickr Creative Commons: DM

A unique looking pooch, the Chinese Crested is lively without being too hyper. They only have hair on their head, tail, and feet which makes them ideal for allergy-prone pet owners.


12. Pug

Flickr Creative Commons: e_haya

Flickr Creative Commons: e_haya

Who doesn’t love Pugs? Their flat smooshy noses are irresistible. Pugs are prone to obesity though, so be sure to strut them down your city street once a day, or else those cute smooshed noses will have a hard time breathing.


Do you and your canine pal enjoy living in the city? Let us know!