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Why We Use More than One Sitter

Sometimes people wonder if they will get the same pet sitter or dog walker each time they go out of town, or the same dog walker every time they need their dog walked in Gwinnett County.

At 2 Paws Up Inc, we strive to keep all of our sitters working as a team. This means that every sitter is trained and familiar with the policies and procedures of our company. Every sitter is able to do the job with the same level of care and attention to detail.

Why We Use More than One Sitter

Imagine if your boss said to you that, from now on, you have to work 7 days per week. Not only that, you have to work morning, noon, and night, and that sometimes you will have to spend the night at work as well. How would you feel about doing that job? Would it be something you would look forward to doing? In addition, as you went on working without much of a break, what would happen to the quality of your work?

Even though we work with pets, the same reasoning applies to pet sitters and dog walkers. They need consistent days off and they need to be able to spend time with friends and family each day. They need time to do all of the things you like to do when you are off from work.

For our pet sitters to have days off, we must use more than one pet sitter per client.

We also work our sitters in shifts so that they have part of their time each working day to eat with their families, run errands, or just unwind.

We have seen that this keeps the quality and level of service high since sitters have the appropriate time needed to rest and recharge.

Why Our Clients Love that We Work as a Team

This is something that you, our clients have come to love because they know they will receive the same level of care no matter which sitter or walker takes care of their pet.

In addition, to you, our clients rest easy knowing they can count on us when they need care for their pet(s). You are not depending on just one person, but we have a team of highly qualified and dedicated sitters at your service. You are not left in a bind if there is an emergency with a sitter or if someone gets sick or must take a vacation, there is always someone to take care of your pet(s).

One of our clients, Colin Smith, in Grayson, had the following to say about our team of sitters: “All of the sitters we’ve used from 2 Paws Up Inc have been wonderful! Our dogs are very well taken care of and our house is in perfect order when we return home.”

Another client, Steve and Emily Johnson, in Lilburn, said, “Your service is a Godsend for us! We know that our dogs are in good hands when we are away. We would never leave them before we found you. No improvements needed! All of your sitters have been awesome!”

Are You Interested in getting our team of sitters to work for you? Contact us today!

Keep your Pets Safe Everyday with These Medication Storage Tips

It’s common nowadays for pets to be on regular medications.  Many pets take medicine like monthly flea and tick prevention as well as monthly heartworm pills.  If your pup is in their twilight years, your list of medications can grow drastically between joint medicine, vitamins and pain medications.  They come in all forms- tablets, liquids, creams, injectables, vitamins, etc.

All of these medications help your pet stay healthy and happy and hopefully lead longer lives.  However, just like our own medications, they are nothing to fool around with.  Medications that are improperly stored can put your pets and even your family members (such as children or spouse) at risk.  Your vet should be the go-to expert on tips and tricks to keep your medications stored safely since your pet’s welfare is their chief concern. However, we have some recommendations that could help you minimize the dangers of your pet medicine.

  1. Store Medications out of Reach of your Children and Pets

It sounds like common sense, but it’s very important to keep pet medications stored in a secure location out of reach of pets and children. However, this can be tricky. What constitutes out of reach? Especially if you have cats that can get into the highest nooks and crannies with ease.  A high, closed cupboard is the most ideal for drugs that also need to be stored at room temperature. If you want to be extra safe, you can lock the cupboard, especially in the instance of extra curious pets or children.  If you have other animals, such as horses, cows or pigs, make sure you treat them in an area that your dog or cat can’t get to.  Smaller animals have been known to be accidentally killed after coming into contact with spilled medications or even eating the fecal matter of treated animals.

  1. Be Cautious of Flavored Medications

Most medicines are very unappetizing.  No one enjoys taking gross tasting medicine, so why would your pet be any different? Many of today’s medications contain flavoring to make them taste better than normal- especially for your pets.  If you have one of these medications and you hide it in a lower drawer or cupboard, your dog (especially if they have a good nose!) can rummage through the cabinet or drawer and find it and have a feast- with devastatingly deadly effects. Most pill bottles are no match for your dog’s teeth, and they can and will ingest it.

Toddlers or young children are often lured by medication flavorings that smell like candy.  It creates the potential for accidental overdose or exposure, which can have terrible consequences.  All the more reason to find a safe space that is out of reach of most pets and children.

  1. Mark your Meds or Separate them Completely from Your Pet Meds

Pet medications should be stored securely just like human medications.  Perhaps the best place to store them is in the same spot as your human medications.  However, if at all possible they should be kept in separate areas.  Confusing pet and human medicines is all too common of an issue, and it can make you or your pet very sick.   There are two easy steps to avoid this problem.  First, check the label every time you reach for meds.  This is a simple, quick way to ensure that no creature is getting the wrong medicine.  This is especially simple since many pet clinics are starting to add logos, or cartoon paw prints on the cap to help instantly differentiate bottles.  Secondly, if you keep your meds in a completely different area than your pet meds, you will never give them the wrong one.  It protects both you and your pet.

  1. Check Expiration Dates and Storage Instructions

Medications have a shelf life and storage instructions, just like your groceries.  If you don’t store them the way they need, they won’t work the way they’re supposed to, and in some cases, they can become dangerous with serious side effects. Some medicines need refrigeration, so check your vet’s instructions thoroughly.

If a medication is expired, it’s automatically off-limits to pets.  They can become dangerous or less effective because of chemical changes that have occurred over time.  Injectable medications that are expired have a high risk of bacteria growing in the vial.  Any drug that’s expired can become toxic.  Dispose of any expired medications to avoid confusion or accidental ingestion.

All of these things are simple and can keep you from seriously hurting your pet or your family.  Take appropriate actions to ensure medicine safety in your home.

Share what you know about keeping medications out of the reach of your pets in the comments below. 

 

How to Recover from Your Vacation

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As glad as you are to see your pets when you return home from a trip, recovering from vacation and readjusting back to real life isn’t always easy!

You’re tired from traveling. Your vacation was either busier than you wanted or so relaxing that real life seems impossible now. Your kids’ sleep schedules might be completely off. Work, bills, dishes, and a million other things to do are still waiting for you when you get back…not to mention the inevitable unpacking and laundry that follow your return. It’s why people often say, “I need a vacation to recover from my vacation!”

We’re here to help with some tips to ease you back into life without the overwhelm and drudgery:

1. Be Kind to Your Body

Eating habits during vacation might not leave you feeling great by the end of the trip if you’ve had a lot of fast food and snacks you don’t normally indulge in during daily life. But don’t beat yourself up about it; you were on vacation! To help your system bounce back, you don’t have to go on a drastic diet. Start out with easy things like drinking some probiotic or lemon ginger tea, making sure you have enough water to stave off bloat and purge out excess salt intake, adding more fiber into your diet, consciously making sure to get enough sleep, and returning to your normal exercise routine in small bursts if needed to avoid quitting altogether.

2. Accentuate the Positive

Place a vacation souvenir or photo on your desk at work or a spot in your home to help remind you to take a moment every day to reflect on a positive feeling you had during that time and call back up the feeling. Rather than concentrating on being sad that you’re not back in that moment, just feel grateful you had the moment, and let it inspire you to inject a bit of that laid-back vacation mindset when you start to get too caught up in the “stuff” of life. Gratitude breeds more gratitude. Maybe you learned something about yourself on vacation or realized you wanted to change something in your life; let the vacation inspire you toward positivity.

3. Get Outside!

Vacations tend to involve nature or at least being outside a lot, which is one reason they’re so good for the soul. Most of us (except for us dog walkers!) spend too much time indoors working, watching TV, and staring at our phone screens. Make sure to work time into your life to get outside with your dogs, visit local parks and hiking spots, even walk around your office building a few times during your lunch break. Simply walking around a bit outside is often enough to help you clear your mind.

4. Prioritize Your To-Dos with Time Blocks

Pick one priority on your to-do list to address for each day of the week you return so you set clear intentions for how you’re going to get things done. This will keep you focused on each task at-hand and reduce the temptation to distract yourself with other things that aren’t urgent (like checking social media). Remember that you don’t HAVE to get to every single thing on your to-do list immediately. Some of the laundry can probably wait; so can some of the emails in your inbox. Schedule time blocks to address tasks in batches, starting with what’s most urgent.

Obviously, our primary focus for this blog is advice about pets, but you – their human counterparts – are just as important to us. You can rest assured that while you’re ON vacation, your pets in our care are getting lots of attention, and when you get home, they get the same from the humans they love the most in the world. Lots of playing and cuddling with your pets is bound to help ease you back into things too!

What Makes Your Pet Happy

Are there tell-tail signs that indicate to you your pet
is happy? Why, yes, there are!

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A Happy Dog…

  • has a “sparkle” or “glow” about him. He’s interested in his surroundings and enjoys interaction with people and other animals.
  • makes eye contact and is interested in his humans’ activities. He often joins in on the fun.
  • is interested in eating his food.
  • has a shiny coat, bright eyes, pink gums and a pink tongue (except for Shar Peis, Chow Chows, or other black tongued breeds, of course!)
  • wags his tail when in verbal or physical contact with humans.
  • makes pleasure noises when interacting with humans and other animals (noises that his humans know as happy noises).
  • sleeps well at night with little or no disturbance.
  • rolls around in obvious pleasure.
  • appears to spontaneously seek pleasure, like running and/or swimming in the surf when at the beach.
  • is relaxed around other dogs and has good inter-canine relationships.

 

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A Happy Cat…

  • is confident, interacts with her humans, and often initiates contact.
  • “talks” to her humans (the classic sound of feline happiness is the “purrrrrr,” of course).
  • has bright eyes, a good coat, pink gums and tongue, and grooms herself several times per day.
  • rolls on her back, jumps and plays.
  • wanders around her house and/or outdoors seeking entertainment, such as swatting at bugs, chasing butterflies, calling birds, using her scratching post, and playing hide and seek.

You’ll likely notice the list for a happy cat is noticeably shorter than the list for a happy dog, but, as most cat lovers know, cats aren’t quite as outgoing as dogs and are prone to standoffish personalities.

So how does your pet rank on the happiness meter? Is Tigger a typical happy cat, or do you feel there may be cause to worry? Whether you are the pet parent of a dog or a cat, if you notice any concerning changes in your pet’s behavior, speak to your vet. After all, while our pets can display obvious signs of happiness like the ones above, they can’t verbally tell us when something is wrong, and are quite skilled at masking pain and discomfort.

Is it Possible Your Furry Friend Has a Food Allergy?

dog and fleas iStock_000019001636SmallWe hear about children having nut allergies, and it seems more commonplace for people to suffer from wheat, shellfish, milk and soy allergies, but did you realize your pet can also be prone to food allergies? A food allergy occurs when a pet’s immune system mistakenly identifies a particular food ingredient as harmful, and then creates defensive antibodies to fight the invading enemy (the food). While they can be difficult to diagnose, and even harder to treat, there are a few things you should know about food allergies in pets.

Symptoms Vary

While some cats and dogs may have tummy issues, such as diarrhea and weight loss, others can experience itchy skin. They may get ear infections, have anal gland problems or simply scratch all over, with symptoms worsening over time as the reaction to the food builds up.

Pets Aren’t Born with Food Allergies

Food allergies typically don’t begin until around one year of age, and they tend to develop after your pet has been eating a certain food for a long period of time.

Do a Food Trail

Some pet parents automatically assume grain is to blame, but that isn’t always the case, as red meats, chicken and corn are the more common allergens. In an effort to find a solution to your pet’s food allergies, try a hypoallergenic food for at least eight weeks. During the food trial, avoid giving your pet treats, flavored worming supplements, bones and table scraps, and keep him away from the kitchen while you are cooking. If you drop food and your pet eats it, it can skew the food trial.

At the end of eight weeks, reintroduce your pet’s old food and see if the symptoms recur. This step is important, since many allergies will fluctuate, or you may get a partial improvement. Either of these will only be obvious once your reintroduce the old food again.

It Could Be More Than Just a Food Allergy

cat fleas iStock_000001607683SmallUnfortunately, many pets who suffer from food allergies may also be allergic to pollens, dust mites or environmental allergens. While changing your pet’s food may help, it may not solve the problem entirely.

Nutritional Balance is Important

When deciding on a new food for your pet, be sure to choose one that is perfectly balanced and healthy for your furry friend. If you’re unsure which brand is best, seek consult from your veterinarian.

If you suspect your pet does have a food allergy, start with a visit to your pet’s vet, who can assist you in working out what will best suit your pet, as well as check for any other diseases that cause similar symptoms to a food allergy.

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Top 12 Reasons You Will Love Having a Dog

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When you have a dog you will be very happy with the results, there is no doubt that you need to love the upsides that come from it. How could it be any better than waking up to a smiling face and knowing that they love you always? Here are the proven benefits of having a dog.

  1. You will be happier right away!

When you spend just a few minutes with a dog per day you will love the fact that you will be able to enjoy yourself as well as feel more relaxed and happy. When you play with your puppy you will be able to know that you are increasing your levels of dopamine and serotonin and that means that you will feel much better. The fastest way to improve that is to play with your pet right away.

  1. Petting your dog will lower your risk of heart disease!

When you have high blood pressure you will feel much better when you are petting your dog. You will be surprised to know how much a few minutes with your pet can reduce your anxiety and ensure that you are able to feel much better.

  1. Dogs are better for sensitive skin than cats!

If you have a problem with allergies as well as if you have any issues you will be able to enjoy knowing that dogs are very helpful for you. People who have dogs have a lower chance of getting eczema and that means that you will have fewer allergies as well.

  1. You will be healthier!

One thing that is wonderful about your dog is that you will exercise together which means that you will be healthier and happier as well as better adjusted to your surroundings. When you are taking your dog out every day you cannot help but take in the sun as well as get some exercise. This is a great way for you to be able to enjoy yourself and know that you are going to be in good spirits.

  1. You will recover much more quickly with a dog.

People who have dogs get much better quicker when they have a dog. People who have had heart attackers are two times as likely to recover faster with a dog as those who do not have a dog.

 

  1. Dogs can be trained to do almost anything.

Dogs are very smart, and that means that they can be trained to do almost anything. When it comes to handling owners who have disabilities or who are in stressful situations, this is a natural for dogs. They can be trained to anticipate heart attacks and also to prevent stressful situations for their human owners.

 

  1. Children who have dogs at home have higher school attendance

Whether you realize it or not, kids who have dogs at home are more adjusted which means that they have better health and less sickness. This translates to kids staying in school longer and missing fewer days.

  1. Dogs make your kids happier!

If you have kids, having a dog will make them happier and ensure that they are able to be more adjusted to their surroundings. If a child is suffering from being bullied or other issues, having a dog is a great way to create a sense of security for the child.

  1. Dogs are loyal!

Dogs are extremely smart and loyal, and they will show you that. You will always have a happy face to wake up to as well as someone who knows when you are not feeling well. Having a dog is having a best friend for life.

  1. Dogs Will Find Their Owners!

One dog in South Dakota travelled 2800 miles to find his owner. Dogs love their owners and want to be with them, this dog; Bobbie the Wonder dog holds the record in human recovery stories.

  1. Dogs Increase Your Security!

Dogs are great watchers ad they see everything, they will let you know when there is something wrong and will alert you when there is a problem in your neighborhood. When you have a dog, you can be assured that they will be on the lookout to help you at every moment.

  1. Dogs Get You Out!

When you have a dog, you have to walk it and take it out on a regular basis. That means that you need to make sure that you are getting exercise but that you are also interacting with people on a regular basis. When you are out and about you cannot help but be more happy and healthy in every way.

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