When life seems so hectic, it’s easy to focus on what’s wrong – your laptop’s too slow, your car’s making that sound again, and you don’t even have dinner planned! Believe us, we totally get it. But when you allow yourself to become consumed with negativity , you tend to forget about all the amazing things that are right in front of you. With the onset of November we are instantly taken to thoughts of turkey, sweet potatoes, biscuits, and brown gravy – but when we take a step back from the delicious side of things, we like to focus on the core message of Thanksgiving: being thankful.
It starts by knowing that your thoughts are incredibly powerful – which makes thinking happy thoughts really influential in your overall wellbeing. It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the wrongs of your day, but focusing on just a couple of things that went right can completely dissolve those upsetting shortcomings. Noticing even the tiniest of things, like the fact you caught three green lights in a row on the way to work, can really have a domino effect on the things you choose to notice and what falls by the wayside. Long story short: think like your dog, who rolls around in the good things and simply kicks dirt and walks away from the bad.
Just welcoming a positive thought can have a ripple effect on your entire perspective with time. Being grateful also offers a chance to be present, as you’re looking for things in the current moment to notice and have a positive impact on your day – something that seems rare in these days of emails, cyberspace, and responsibilities.
Here are a couple of our favorite little things to be grateful for:
A beautiful day, the smell of fresh air
When a stranger holds the door
A gorgeous sunrise or sunset
A delicious cup of coffee, meal, or beverage
When our pets make us laugh
A big, beautiful tree or colorful flowers
Cuddles with our pets
Things your pet is thankful for:
November 11, 2014 is Veterans Day, a day we salute those who have served for our country. Due to the heroic actions our veterans have endured, some have developed PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), which triggers depression, anxiety, and many other issues. Thankfully, multiple organizations such as, Paws for Purple Hearts, Canines for Hope, and Warrior Canine Connection, help those with PTSD. The service dogs have helped PTSD victims show remarkable differences emotionally and physically. Service dogs for PTSD victims have elevated levels of oxytocin, lowered blood pressure, adjusted serotonin levels, improved sleep, and lessened anxiety and depression. Service dogs helping with PTSD were able to get veterans back to feeling like themselves again and no longer living in fear. Dogs have always been remarkable creatures and whether they are in our homes strictly as pets, or serving those with disabilities, everyone needs that companionship. On Veterans Day, as we stand proud for our soldiers and our country, let us also stand proud for the canine warriors who also help and support us.
It seems like recently everywhere we turn one of our friends is going gluten free – and they’re always thrilled with the results. While the trend has endured some skepticism, there are loads of articles about the benefits of keeping your diet simpler and cleaner – and the same rules apply to pets! From severe allergies to weight control, the Internet is riddled with stories of a gluten free diet changing pets’ lives, which is exactly why you won’t see a lick of it in our food or treats.
Rather than it being a lifestyle choice on behalf of the owners, pets can also be gluten intolerant. Signs of intolerance are chronic GI upsets (diarrhea, constipation, vomiting in extreme cases), dry/flaky skin, hair loss, rashes, and scratching, as well as chronic ear infections. Before doing anything drastic to your pet’s daily diet, consult your veterinarian to pinpoint the perfect food regime. For more about how we do things around here, check out our About Us page.
So, we know puppies are cute, and that cats can be finicky, and horses are incredibly regal and adored animals – but it’s their impact on human health that’s really noteworthy. From PTSD to depression, anxiety, and heart health, spending time with a pet has proven benefits you might not even be aware of. Petting an animal decreases blood pressure and cholesterol, which has positive effects on heart health, and depression can subside just by spending ample time with pets. Most dog owners engage in more physical activity than non-dog owners and owning a pet also benefits your immune system (and helps thwart children’s allergies!) Need we say more? Yes? Well, ok! Their unconditional love combats feeling of loneliness, which can fuel depression, as well as simply making you feel loved (seriously, what’s better than being greeted by your companion after a long day’s work?) Pets also help with recuperation – research shows that patients with a companion animal tend to have better recovery rates (in addition to combating depression that can sometimes come with illness or surgery.) Bonus benefit: they help you meet people! Pets can be an instant ice breaker as well as a way to get yourself out and about without feeling alone – from parks to training classes, your pet may be the key to your newest friend or love interest! We’d love to see photos of your special pals. Visit our Community page online to share and view other adorable pals!
Here at Stewart Pet, if there’s one thing we specialize in, it’s pet wellness. Sponsored in part by the American Veterinary Medical Association, this month is dedicated to the importance of regular wellness checkups and disease prevention. While nutrition isn’t specifically mentioned as a facet of this awareness holiday, we think proper nourishment is a major contributor to your pet’s health and wellbeing – hence why all of our food and treats boast simple, all natural, and safely sourced ingredients that pet parents can feel good feeding their furry friends.
Routine wellness check ups are also integral to your pet’s health, as it’s one of the most proactive ways to prevent serious problems. Don’t wait until your pet is showing outward signs of an ailment to make an appointment with your vet. The good news is that routine vaccines are the perfect opportunity for your vet to check on your pup, so make sure you schedule the appointment as soon as that reminder post card arrives!
October is particularly near and dear to our hearts because it’s Adopt a Dog Month, something we advocate 100%. You already know how we feel about dogs – they bring so much joy, activity, and love into our lives that, if we could, we’d adopt every dog we saw!
The best we can do is spread the word about this incredible awareness month and hope it prompts some of you to welcome a new dog into your loving home. It’s important to know that shelter dogs are absolutely no different than purebreds, and oftentimes you can find a purebred in the shelter if your heart’s set on it.
Bringing a new pet into the home is a bit of a big deal so a little preparation beforehand isn’t a bad thing. Invest in a dog bed, some toys, and of course food and treats (their favorite!) Any one of our delicious Pro-Treats are the perfect welcome home treat (and will quickly make you his new favorite friend) and the benefits of a raw diet are also something to consider for your potential new pal. For more tips on how to integrate a new pet into your home, head here.
In the days of Rene Descartes, animals were just red-blooded ‘machines’ without emotions or desires… My, how far we’ve come! Today, animal scientists are constantly finding instances of animals demonstrating cognizance, emotions, and compassion toward others. Just last week we saw a video of a dog trying to splash a dead fish back to life – which may seem arbitrary and laughable but all we saw was a dog that cared. He recognized something wasn’t right with the fish and tried his best to make it better. No machine – computer, car, or otherwise – has ever taken it upon itself to help us like that.
Just like humans, some animals just connect better with others – even those of other species. From a sanctuary cheetah and her canine best friend to a goat who led a blind donkey to water every day, there is no denying that animals have the ability to convey compassion and build friendships – and we find that absolutely incredible.
Turns out, they smell it (or so we think.) Does your dog know when it’s dinnertime? That he hasn’t been walked yet? Does he jump on the couch right before your significant other comes home? BBC’s “Inside the Animal Mind” delved into the issue of whether or not dogs understand the concept of time and found something we thought to be incredibly interesting.
When we leave the house, our scent degenerates at a certain rate and, if you are on a consistent schedule, dogs eventually put it together that when your scent fades to a certain level, that’s when you’ll be home. So, pretty much, dogs gauge the strength of a scent and eventually start attributing it to certain things ranging from when you’ll be home to how soon after you’ve walked through the door that dinner is served. Pretty crazy, right? For a better explanation, you can catch the whole clip here!
The American Kennel Club has dubbed September Responsible Dog Ownership Month and we want to honor all the responsible pet people out there! When you first considered getting a dog you probably thought, “How hard can it be?” Turns out, to be a responsible pet owner is actually quite a demanding task. Pets don’t just rely on you for food and water, they depend on you for everything that contributes to their wellbeing – vaccinations, exercise, entertainment, and support are all things your pet needs but can’t receive without you! If you’re anything like us, your pet quickly became your best friend so providing these things is your pleasure, but give yourself a belly rub for being an awesome pet parent! On that note, we’d love to see photos of your four-legged pals! Visit our online Community where you can upload your favorite photos and check out other furry friends! http://stewartpet.com/community/
Sometimes Mother Nature can strike without warning, and not being prepared can become life threatening in certain situations. September is Disaster Preparedness Month, dedicated to bringing awareness to – you guessed it – being prepared in the event of a disaster. This means having everything your family needs (pets included!) in the event of an emergency. Below are a few tips to help properly prepare your pets.
Start by identifying potential threats in your area – from tornadoes to tidal waves, not every area is effected by the same types of disasters. This can help shape your preparedness kit and the items you need.
The general rule is to prepare enough of everything for three days – so while you’re stocking up on canned goods for the family, don’t forget to grab an extra bag or two of dog food. It’s also crucial to stock up on any medicines your pet may be on and an ample supply of water. Have a freshly stocked pet first aid kit (gauze pads, ice pack, blanket, antiseptic wipes, etc.), a leash & collar (or pet carrier for cat owners), and make sure your pet’s I.D. tag is completely up-to-date in case your pet gets lost amid the chaos. Depending on your area, a flotation device and/or sweater for pets may be a major necessity as well.
Don’t wait until the wind is howling and the power is completely out in your city – come up with a plan and practice your course of action with the family, including designating someone to be responsible for the family pet!
For a full checklist for the whole family, head here: http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster-safety-library