You are currently browsing the OkcPetsOnline category.

Coconut Oil For Our Furry Friends

posted June 30th, 2016 by
  • Share
Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil For Our Furry Friends – Words of Wellness

By Emily Cefalo

 

Nowadays, everyone is focusing on wellness, and caring for our furry friends is no exception.  I get asked almost every day by pet owners how to get rid of pet odors. Whether it is goopy eyes or stinky ears and skin, my answer is always the same—coconut oil!

I’ve been in the dog grooming industry since 1997. We always use natural and botanical products at Mia & Company.  Sometimes that isn’t enough.

Fed regularly to pets, coconut oil can have many health benefits for their skin, digestive and immune systems, metabolic function, even their bone and brain health! Here are some of my top reasons for adding coconut oil to your dog’s diet:

Coconut oil improves overall skin health and clears up skin conditions such as eczema, flea allergies, contact dermatitis and itchy skin. It can reduce bad breath. Dog lovers even brush their pets’ teeth with it, as they love the taste.

Incredibly emollient, coconut oil helps moisturize the driest skin and makes a dog’s coat gleam with health—whether you add it to her diet, her shampoo or both!

Applied topically to the skin, coconut oil promotes the healing of cuts, wounds, hot spots, bites and stings.

The antibacterial and antifungal properties of coconut oil help reduce doggie odor, and the pleasant, tropical aroma imparts a delightful scent to a dog’s skin and coat.

Coconut oil prevents and treats yeast infections, including candida. The antiviral agents also help dogs recover quickly from kennel cough.

I would recommend starting your pet on a low dose. If you have a small dog or cat, less than 15 pounds, start out using a one-fourth teaspoon.  If you have a medium to large breed, start out using one-half teaspoon. Once applied to their dog food, it absorbs immediately. Any brand will work but make sure it’s unrefined.

 

Wags & Kisses

Mia & Co. Pet Salon

No Miracle Worker

posted June 24th, 2016 by
  • Share
Holiday Gift

No Miracle Worker

The 4th of July – – a day to celebrate what it means to live in America. For those who’ve served our country or lived in a third-world country – – it has a special meaning. There will be picnics, family get togethers, barbecue, homemade ice cream and fireworks – – lots and lots of fireworks.

For those of us who work in rescue, we also know it is the time, each year, that thousands of dogs are lost. The loud noises scare them; they’re in unfamiliar surroundings and they bolt; their collars with ID are not on them; their owners forgot to have them micro-chipped; they’re micro-chipped, but their owners didn’t change the registration from the shelter.

And, on July 5th the phones will start ringing. People will want to drop off a dog they found in their yard; a dog they rescued running down the street; a dog someone dumped in their neighborhood. Likewise, all of us will get calls from frantic pet owners, all too frequently, demanding that we find their dog NOW.

Here’s where the rubber meets the road and it gets interesting. No shelter, no rescue, no one can take in all the dogs that are homeless in this area. Why??? Because there are too many homeless dogs already in shelters and rescues.

There is literally No Room in the Inn.

Soooo – – we will celebrate along with our family and friends, then come to work on Tuesday July 5th, take a deep breath and get ready. Tragically, it happens every year and in areas, like northeast Oklahoma, where there are thousands of homeless dogs and cats – – rescuers will bear the brunt of unhappy adults who expect a Miracle.

And

There Is No Miracle Worker

Kay Stout, Director   PAAS Vinita  [email protected]  918-256-7227

No Miracle Worker

Reward offered in Oklahoma City cat cruelty case

posted June 22nd, 2016 by
  • Share
Reward

The Humane Society of the United States is offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­abandoning 24 cats in four small pet carriers, leaving them to starve and suffocate to death in sweltering summer temperatures in Oklahoma City.

This HSUS’ reward is in addition to $2,500 offered by the Oklahoma Alliance for Animals to make the total reward $7,500.

The Case: According to news reports, on June 10, Oklahoma City Animal Welfare discovered the pet carriers thrown behind tall grass in a field near the intersection of S. MacArthur Road and Newcastle Road.

Reports suggest the carriers were thrown from a vehicle while the animals were still alive. Workers removed two dozen dead cats: three from the first crate, seven from the second crate, six from the third crate and eight from the final crate.

Based on the conditions of their bodies and the maggots in the cages, officers estimate the cats were in the field for one week.

Animal Cruelty: Getting the serious attention of law enforcement, prosecutors and residents in cases involving allegations of cruelty to animals is an essential step in protecting the community. The connection between animal cruelty and human violence is well documented. Studies show a correlation between animal cruelty and all manner of other crimes, from narcotics and firearms violations to battery and sexual assault.

The HSUS recently conducted a series of trainings on animal cruelty laws and how to handle animal cruelty cases from first response to prosecution for more than 700 law enforcement personnel across the state of Oklahoma.

Cynthia Armstrong, Oklahoma senior state director for The HSUS said: “Abandoning these animals to die a slow and excruciating death is a despicable act of animal cruelty. We hope our reward helps find the person or persons who committed this heinous crime.”

Jamee Suarez, president of the Oklahoma Alliance for Animals said: “It is a truly callous individual who would pack these innocent cats into tiny carriers, toss them along a roadside like garbage and then drive away to let them starve to death.”

The Investigators: The Oklahoma City Animal Welfare Division is investigating and asks anyone with information about the case to call 405-297-3100 or Crime Stoppers at 405-235-7300.

Resources: The HSUS Animal Cruelty Campaign raises public awareness and educates communities about the connection between animal cruelty and human violence while providing a variety of resources to law enforcement agencies, social work professionals, educators, legislators and families. The HSUS offers rewards in animal cruelty cases across the country and works to strengthen laws against animal cruelty.

The National Sheriffs’ Association and The HSUS launched ICE BlackBox, a free smartphone tool, to allow users to record video of illegal animal cruelty and share it securely with law enforcement for possible investigation and prosecution.

The HSUS doubled its standard cruelty reward from $2,500 to $5,000 thanks to a generous donation from an HSUS board member. To see information on statistics, trends, laws and animal cruelty categories, click here.  

Twister’s New Home

posted June 21st, 2016 by
  • Share
What's in Your Dog Shampoo

Twister’s New Home

By Lauren Cavagnolo

Photos by Sirius Photography

 

Displaced after the Moore tornadoes, a dog finds his place at the Tulsa Boys’ Home

“A house just isn’t a home without a dog.”

It’s a statement to which many TulsaPets Magazine readers can relate. And now, so can the young men of the Tulsa Boys’ Home.

Though it is temporary, the campus is home for the boys, says Jeff Johnson, volunteer coordinator for the Tulsa Boys’ Home. And for many people, the idea of a home includes a dog.

So when the staff decided to adopt a young chocolate Lab named Twister a year and a half ago, the boys were thrilled.

“This is their shot at having a pet. When these kids look back on their life, and some-one says, ‘Did you have a pet growing up?’ this is going to be the one that 64 of these boys refer to,” Johnson says.

The boys living at the facility in Sands Springs range in age from 11 to 17 years old. The group provides assistance to those struggling with substance addiction, as well as boys who have become wards of the state for a variety of reasons including abuse and neglect. The length of stay can vary from six months to two years, depending on the program and needs of the boy.

Not unlike some of the boys residing there, Twister’s journey to the Tulsa Boys’ Home began with misfortune. On May 20, 2013, the town of Moore was struck by an EF5 tornado. Many pets, including Twister, were separated from their families in the destruction of the storm.

Oklahoma City-based organization A New Leash On Life, Inc., took in many of these animals, as residents tried to piece their homes and lives back together. 

“He was found, and we housed a lot of dogs here during the 30 days when their owners were looking for them. He is one that was never claimed,” says Barbara Lewis, CEO of A New Leash On Life, Inc.

A decision was made to enroll him in the Pen Pals Prison Program, a 10-week course that pairs inmates with shelter dogs. The inmates teach the dogs basic manners, obedience, and correct any behavioral problems.

Since they didn’t know his name, and he was a refugee of the Moore tornado, the inmates named him Twister, according to Lewis.

“About the time they were ready to graduate, we were contacted by the Tulsa Boys’ Home. They were looking for a resident dog, and I said, ‘I think I have just the dog for you,’” Lewis says.

 

Unconditional Love

‘The interaction with the boys and Twister is amazing to watch,” says Kaycee Aragon, manager of the Eagle Lodge on the Tulsa Boys’ Home campus. “Sometimes these boys will have the worst day ever, and they will come through these doors, and it’s a whole different demeanor when they see Twister. They go from being mad to happy.”

Johnson says most of the kids on campus have not been raised in a traditional family setting and don’t fully grasp the concepts of unconditional love and forgiveness.

“These things they can’t even relate to; you can’t even describe it to them because they don’t have a reference point,” Johnson says. “Now with this dog, they can see [he] loves them unconditionally. This dog does not care if they threw a radio through the window earlier; that dog is still going to love them. Most of them probably haven’t had someone who treats them that way.”

Stormy Bullard, youth and family counselor at the Tulsa Boys’ Home, says Twister is present for many of the therapy sessions, bringing with him a calming effect on the boys. He also provides a welcome dis-traction, helping the boys to open up about more difficult or uncomfortable topics.

 “He definitely helps them in ways that we probably don’t even realize,” Bullard says.

The benefits of having a canine on campus extend beyond the therapy sessions. “They learn how to be more empathetic, how they treat him and how that relates to their other relationships,” Bullard says.

Having Twister around also adds that homey element to the campus. “When they are having a bad day, they just want to hang out with him or snuggle with him,” Bullard says.

And when the boys need a playmate to let loose with, Twister is their perfect companion. “A lot of these boys have a lot of energy,” Johnson says. “That dog is not going to get tired. You can take him out to the pond with a stick and throw it all day long and wear these boys out one at a time.”

“There is so much more love around here now that we have a dog.” Johnson adds. “All of the other lodges want a dog. They all want the dog to live in their lodge.”

 

Twice the Fun

Through the support of an anonymous donor, A New Leash On Life, Inc., provides the Tulsa Boys’ Home with dog food each year. And when they made their yearly delivery in December, it was the perfect opportunity to let Lewis know they were ready for a second dog.

“I had a couple of dogs just show up on my porch and couldn’t find the owners,” Lewis says. “And I said if you don’t mind a three-legged dog, I have just the dog. And we let the boys name him, and they named him Captain Jack.

“When I delivered him, I told the boys, it’s going to be up to you guys to train him to come when he is called and sit and lie down and do all the basic stuff. That’s what they are doing.”

And the boys couldn’t be happier about it. Jacob Hardin, a resident of Tulsa Boys’ Home, helped train Captain as he affectionately calls him. Even though it is more responsibility and work, to Hardin it is worth it.

 “I’ve been a dog person for a long time, but moving around so much I never really had a dog to stay with. Now I actually get to be here with a dog  and help train him,” Hardin says.

Hardin says having the dogs on campus has encouraged the boys to be more active and gives them a reason to go outside and play. The dogs even help some of the boys get along better.

“Not many kids here get along with each other; he brought some kids back together,” Hardin says. “There are kids here who don’t have a friend but have Twister.”

Captain Jack, in particular, has been a companion to Hardin, hanging out in his room and listening to him practice guitar.

“When you don’t have someone to talk to, there you go; he’ll sit down and listen to you, every word, and he won’t go until you say you want to be alone,” Hardin says of Captain.

Johnson is equally pleased with the addition of Captain Jack to the Tulsa Boys’ Home campus.

“Once again, she hit a home run. Barbara understands this place,” Johnson says. “With the New Leash On Life program, they have been so supportive of us. They don’t just give us a dog and disappear. They are there to help us out and support us. They care about these dogs and want them to have a right fit.”

And as much as the dogs help the boys, the boys are just as important to the dogs.

“[Twister] lost his family,” Johnson says, “And so now, they can be his family.”

Viral Cuteness

posted June 15th, 2016 by
  • Share
Coconut Oil

Viral Cuteness – Spreading the love of a boy and his dog

By Anna Holton-Dean

Viral CutenessWhat’s cuter than a baby or a dog?

The answer can only be a baby and a dog.

Photographer Jarod Knoten thought so when he snapped a photo back in 2012 of his 2-month-old son Porter and rescue pooch Pixel, snuggling together.

Knoten was snapping photos of his newborn when Pixel jumped up on the bed and joined him. “Pixel was lying behind Porter, so I propped him up on her chest between her front and back legs,” he says. “After a couple of shots, Porter fell over on top of her front legs, and she pulled her leg out from underneath him and snuggled up with him. Of course, I started firing away.”

Knoten posted the photo to reddit.com (via imgur.com) with the caption, “Just my dog spooning my baby. Nothing to see here.” As the views kept growing, it became apparent he wasn’t the only one who found it adorable.

Since the photo’s original posting to reddit, and an updated posting by Knoten’s wife Claire with an additional photo, the  two photos combined on imgur have collected over 2 million views, reaching viral status. The photos have been featured on numerous sites including Animal Planet, Disney Family, Huffington Post, The Chive, BuzzFeed and the ASPCA.

For all the shares, reposts and love the original photo received, there was criticism and judgment. As with anything on social media, people can and will find something to criticize.

“The photo of Porter and Pixel got as much backlash as it did praise,” Knoten says. “A lot of people complained that we were putting our infant at risk by exposing him to our dog.

“Obviously, we would never put our child in a situation where he could be hurt. We knew when we got Pixel that it wouldn’t be too long before we thought about having children, so we did our research and trained her accordingly.

“We tried to play with her like a child would, playfully tugging on her ears, tail, etc. By the time Porter was born she was unfazed by getting tugged on and was prepared to handle how Porter may interact with her during their supervised interactions when he was very little. Porter turned 2 on Nov. 2, and they are best buds and partners in crime.”

As confirmation of their responsible parenting, Claire’s updated photo posting to reddit, stacked with the original of Porter and Pixel, displays the caption, “She’ll bite they said… 9 months later still only kisses.”

The original photo’s popularity hasn’t waned almost two years later. In February 2014, a representative from National Geo-graphic contacted Knoten about licensing the photo for use in a new book, “67 Reasons Why Cats Are Better Than Dogs.” The publication is a silly, witty take on the “age old battle: cat vs. dog.”

The photo’s caption in the book says, “Without the slightest hesitation, dogs will often abandon their own children for the first interesting looking human baby they come across, as this reprehensible photo demonstrates.”

It’s all in good fun, but truthfully, as far as they know, Pixel didn’t abandon anyone (or any puppies). She was found on a rural road as a small puppy by the Knotens’ friends while they were moving. The couple posted a photo of her on Facebook, looking for someone to take her in.

Already discussing the addition of another dog for a while, Knoten said to his wife, “Let’s go look at her,” to which she replied, “You never go to look at a puppy; you go to pick a puppy up.”

“She was the perfect size and sweet as  can be, but she was in pretty bad shape health-wise,” Knoten says.

Pixel had a range of ailments including mange, an infected tail wound, malnourishment and the “home run” of intestinal parasites, according to the veterinarian. But with a lot of love and a little time, she was on the mend, playing with the Knotens’ older Shih Tzu and making friends at the dog park. “Truly the perfect addition to our family,” Knoten says. 

When the photos went viral, commenters wanted to know Pixel’s breed. Their best guess is a Border Collie mix, “or in our opinion, the best mixed breed ever,” he says.

No stranger to viral photos, Knoten had a previous run with his work making the Internet rounds. Perhaps without even knowing it, you’ve seen Knoten’s “skeptical baby” photo, which he originally posted to his blog in 2011. It quickly turned into a popular meme (i.e., spread from person to person online) with various captions.         

Despite being a professional photo-grapher with a previous viral photo, Knoten says he never thought the photo of Porter and Pixel would be as popular as it has been; he just hoped someone would find it as cute as he did.

Today, 2-year-old Porter and Pixel (4 years) are still best buds who like to get into mis-chief together. One of Porter’s favorite things to do is fill his dump trucks with dog food and deliver it to her. “There’s the occasional sneaking food to the dog from the dinner table as well,” Knoten says.

Porter also recently learned to play fetch with her. They still snuggle, and “I imagine,” Knoten says, “when Porter is sleeping in a big kid bed, we will no longer be sharing our bed with Pixel.”

Undoubtedly, Knoten will capture it, and it will be just as cute as their early snuggle days. Until then, the Internet—and all of us—will be waiting for the photo.

“67 Reasons Why Cats Are Better Than Dogs” can be purchased on amazon.com.

Treating Your Pets

posted June 7th, 2016 by
  • Share
What's in Your Dog Shampoo

Treating Your Pets

By Kiley Roberson

 

Whether it’s your constant companion, best friend or first child, your pet is truly someone special. So when you treat them with a snack, it should be special, too. And what if that snack did more than just satisfy your pal’s taste buds… what if it also satisfied a need in your community? That’s the goal of Tulsa’s Bridges Barkery.

The Barkery is part of Tulsa’s Bridges Foundation, an organization that offers education like vocational training, employment opportunities, living skills and community resources to individuals with developmental disabilities.

“We showcase the strengths, capabilities and talents of each individual we serve,” explains Karie Jordan, President and CEO of the Bridges Foundation. “By assisting each person in the attainment of their individual goals, self-sufficiency increases, positively impacting the entire community landscape.”

Karie says her 4-year-old English Bulldog, Miss B, was the inspiration for the organization’s Barkery and is now their mascot and biggest fan.

“Miss B is our mascot, and we love her,” she says. “Baking dog treats was our way of sharing our joy and enthusiasm for her. We knew this would be a great way to give a healthy treat to our community pets and create an employment opportunity for our clients. After baking a few trays of treats,  the clients were in love with the idea and wanted to do more.”

Today, the Barkey is hard at work baking dozens of doggie treats a day, all under the careful eye of Miss B, of course. She goes to work with her owner every day.

“She likes to walk the halls, ensuring she is kept in the loop on all things happening,” Karie says. “Her favorite thing at the Barkery is when the clients bring her treats and spend time with her. She loves to have her back scratched after eating her treats, and then she’s off for a nap.”

Miss B is also the official taste tester for the Barkery and has so far settled on four yummy, all natural flavors of biscuits: beef, chicken, cheese and peanut butter. The baking takes place at the Barkery’s commercial kitchen located at the Brides North Campus. Bridges clients start by choosing a flavor to bake. Then they carefully identify and measure the ingredients into a large mixer. After a thorough mixing, they roll the dough, cut the biscuits, place them on the tray and bake for approximately 30 minutes. After a proper amount of cooling time, they proceed to the assembly and packaging of each bag.

“All of the biscuits are baked fresh daily and contain no preservatives or harmful ingredients,” explains Karie. “We only use human grade ingredients, so these treats are a healthy and delicious snack for your pets.”

But Karie says the entire baking process offers so much more than just great treats; it builds confidence and life skills for clients, too. And the Barkery’s Master Baker is a perfect example.

“When Ms. Chelsea began attending our training program at Bridges two years ago, she was shy and lacked confidence,” Karie says. “When Chelsea graduated from the training program, she was offered a position in the Barkery baking treats.

Over the last year, Chelsea has grown to be an independent, confident young lady and is now the Barkery’s Master Baker.”

The employment opportunity with the Barkery allowed Chelsea to continue working on her vocational skills, learning how to bake, cook and earn a paycheck. The Barkery gave her confidence to grow at her own pace and try new skills she could use at home with the assurance that she has all the support she needed to succeed in her goals.

“The Barkery is important for everyone involved,” Karie says. “It helps clients like Chelsea learn at their own speed, gives pet owners an opportunity to learn about the Bridges Foundation, and finally, you’re favorite four-legged friends get a tasty, healthy treat baked without preservatives and made with lots of love.”

You can find out more about the Bridges Foundation by checking out their website   at www.thebridgesfound.org. There, you can even buy a bag of their delicious treats through their online store.