Blog

Summer activities for you and your dog.

pexels-photo-275717.jpeg

Summer is almost upon us. Get yourself and your dog ready for summertime fun!

Annual Checkup: First, lets start out with some, not so fun, but very important medical care. Summer time means spending more time outside, which means your buddy will be coming into contact with fleas, ticks and other parasites. This is a great time to shake off those winter blues. Take a trip to the vet for an annual checkup and discuss methods for preventing those biting creatures. Most people get regular health checkups, so should your fur friend.  A healthy pup is a happy pup.

Spa days: After the visit to the vet, schedule some spring cleaning. Shredding increases in the springtime as our friends lose their winter coats. Removing dead hair and dandruff will leave your buddy looking and feeling great, along with keeping them from getting overheated, add a washing, nail trim and clean ears and your fur friend will be ready to join in summertime fun and excitement.

Taking pictures: Now that you fur friend is looking and feeling great, capture the look and those precious memories with your buddy. Who doesn’t love pictures of dogs and cats? Everyone takes selfies, so get creative with your fur friend. Get some action shots of your pup: running, hiking or catching a treat., Try different angles or maybe take photos from your dog’s point of view. Sometimes your buddy might be having an off day, even Cindy Crawford had them so be patience and have treats, then hashtag away!

Pick up a hobby together: The list of actives you can do with your dogs are endless; running, biking, flyball, SUP, yoga and just exploring your town.  The best part is they never complain or cancel on you last-minute. The two of you can release energy, have fun and strengthen the bond. Even training is a great way to bond with your friend. This can also ensure your dog will respond and remember commands when asked. Find a safe location and refresh or learn some new commands. Remember you can teach an old dog new tricks.

Go Shopping: Shopping with a friend is way more fun. Sometimes you just need your best friend’s opinion on those jeans, that lamp or window treatment. Finally, you can bring your friend into the store for that second opinion and the best part, they won’t judge you. There are many national chains that allow dogs, and the list is growing all the time. A quick internet search can provide dog friendly stores in your area. Just watch your friends wagging tail with those plates and glasses while in Pottery Barn. Yes, most Pottery Barns are pet friendly.

Vacations: Much like us, your buddy can go “stir crazy” when kept in one environment for too long, so hit the road. Spending vacation time with your friend is what memories are made of. No matter if your idea of relaxation is camping or a four-star hotel stay there is a vacation for everybody and every dog. Before you pack up your buddy know the difference between a place that simply allows pets and one that is truly pet-friendly. The best part of taking your friend will be meeting and talking to other dog-loving strangers who otherwise might have just passed right by you.

Take me out to the ball park: The boys of summer and back and they love dogs.” Bark in the Park” and “Dog Days of Summer” events are now on the schedule for more than a dozen MLB, minor league and even college teams. Freebies, parades and supporting local animal organizes make going to the ballpark a home run for the entire family.

Drinks on the patio: What better way to relax on a summer afternoon than relaxing on a patio with your friend? Find a dog friendly sidewalk cafe, brew pub, coffee shop, or restaurant patio. Sit back, order a drink and a large bowl of cold water and watch the world for a lazy hour or two.

 

 

 

National Kids and Pets Day!

pexels-photo-332974.jpeg

Today is National Kids and Pets Day! What a wonderful idea. This day was established by Colleen Paige in 2005. This day is meant to celebrate the special bond between kids and their pets. Nothing is more precious or pure than the bond kids and pets share. Children who grow up with pets learn patience, responsibility and much more. This day is also meant to bring awareness to pets in need of homes, those that are in need of a special bond, not just with children, but with anyone that will give them a chance. Use this day to celebrate your fur and fur-less children, to encourage safe interaction, and remember your childhood pets. Please remember; never leave children along with pets.

Head over to Koa’s House to sign up for member only specials, giveaways and news. As always, thanks for your support!

Adopt an older dog! Here are a few reasons why they are worth it!

lake-animals-dogs-pets.jpg

We have all done it, seen a puppy and uncontrollably gushed with joy. It happens; it is not anything to be ashamed of. Puppies are super cute and we love them. Still there are many older dogs in shelters that are ready to be the perfect companion. Older dogs come without the chewing of table legs, destroying of sofas, or the peeing on carpets, that is oh so common with puppies. So, here are some of our favorite reasons to adopt older dogs.

  1. They know the basics

This is a big one. Most have some level of manners, are often good on a leash, house trained and ready to instantly integrate into your home. Save the shoes, adopt a senior dog.

  1. They live in the moment

Don’t let the worry of their past drag you down. It does not drag them down. Dogs are amazing in that they easily forget the past and live in moment. Always ready to love and be loved. Maybe there is a lesson there for all of us.

  1. They need homes too

Puppies are always in demand at shelters. We all love them. But let us not forget that the older dogs will most likely be put down if not adopted quickly. They don’t have many chances left, you may be their last hope.

  1. They learn fast

Opposite of popular belief, you can teach actually teach an old dog new tricks. They learn faster and with greater retention than a puppy. Like a toddler, a puppy only has so much attention to give. An older dog can easily focus on you and retain the lessons much quicker.

  1. They are simply wonderful

They are still filled with so much love and joy to give. They never stop showing their gratitude. Often just a soft bed and regular meal is all they need. They will be eternally grateful.

Be a hero, adopt a senior pet!

Thanks For Supporting Koa’s House Benefactor RPM.

rpm_main_logoThanks to everyone that made a purchase over the last two months. Because of you Koa’s House is able to donate $231 to Rescue Pet Movement of Houston, Texas. This wonderful organization transports animals in need to locations in the US that are in need of adoptable pets. Check them out at https://www.rescuedpetsmovement.org/. Also follow us on Instagram & Facebook as we grow and help more rescue organizations.

 

April’s Benenfactor

EAPLKoa’s House was started as a way to help support animal rescues throughout the United States. Every month we select a new benefactor from customer recommendations.

For the month of April Koa’s House will be donating 10% to Evergreen Animal Protective League.

How it works: You make a purchase at Koa’s House and at the end of April Koa’s House donates 10% to EAPL. It’s that simple! Visit Koa’s House  and sign up for our newsletter to get updates, and member only specials.

Click here to learn more about EAPL, click here to see available pets or click here to make a donation to EAPL.

Watch the EAPL video below.

Hiking With Dogs – Be Prepared

Over the years we have hiked Texas forest and the Mountains of Colorado. Over those miles we made some mistakes and learned a few things. There is a lot to consider when you are planning a hiking trip: Maps, GPS, first aid, weather, shelter, food, pack weight, water. That is just the basics for you. Now you need to consider your fur family needs.

Here are a few tips to help you along the way.

Dogs Hiking
Furry Tired Dogs Make Great Pillows
  1. Is your dog ready for days hiking in what may be strenuous conditions?

It is always a good idea to do a few practice hikes prior to heading out for multiple days. Just like you, your dog needs to be physically ready before heading out. Long training walks or treadmill training is a great way to get them ready. Take into consideration your dogs breed and overall health prior to setting out on a multi-day hike. We treadmill train all of our dogs to ensure they are ready for the adventure. As always consult your vet to ensure your fur family is ready.

  1. Trail Etiquette

Believe it or not there are proper trail manners. Aggressive dogs, dogs that run up on others, jumping on others, chasing wildlife, or just not being under voice control is frowned upon. When you are far from civilization, a little problem can quickly escalate to an emergency and put an end to your trip. Ensure you dogs are ready for the adventure by practicing trail manners on local trails before departing.

  1. Dog Blanket

We have spent many nights in a two person backpacking tent with three dogs; One 110lb Lab, one 55lb Husky and one 50lb pittie. It can get crowded and uncomfortable fast. We quickly learned that packing a dog blanket and placing it in the vestibule of the tent helped with space constraints. Packing a dog bed is just not an option when weight and space is a consideration, but after a long day hiking your dog deserves a comfortable place to rest his paws. Ensure your dog cannot run off in the middle of the night.

  1. Food

Food for your fur family is important. It will be powering them over the mountains, across the plains and through the valleys. Food is also a huge weight and space hog. We highly recommend freeze dried food that is rich in calories and light weight. Freeze dried food can be easily re-hydrated with water at camp. As with any food, start your dog on it slowly by adding a little in each meal until they are 100% on the new food.

  1. Water

Water may be the most important consideration. Do not depend on there being water along the hike route. Even if there is, it may not be suitable for your dog to consume. Waterborne pathogens in water can make your dog sick. A sick dog at camp or during a hike is not fun for you or them. Always, carry extra clean water for them too. Carry a filtration system and when needed prepare enough water for yourself and your dog.

  1. Bowls

Like you, your dog will need something to drink and eat out of. Carrying a space consuming bowl is not practical. You should opt instead for a collapsible double bowl. This will enable you to provide water and food at along the trail and at camp.

  1. First Aid

Accidents happen, be prepared. When putting together a first aid kit, think about items that can be used for you and your dog. Things like vet-wrap bandages are wonderful. There are many pet first aid kits out there, none that seem to be well geared to hiking and saving space, so put your own pet & people kit together and save.

  1. Waste Disposal

Pack it out. Carry plenty of waste bags. Some parks do allow for waste to be buried, so check the local regulations. This helps keep our eco-system healthy and waterways clean.

  1. Packs

Fit & Test any dog packs prior to heading out on your adventure. Your dog should feel comfortable with the pack, not stressed. Fit test the pack in a location that your dog feels comfortable and confident. Do not wait until the trail head to put a pack on your dog for the first time. Try a few outings around the home front prior to heading out. Packs should fit slightly snug but not too tight, they need to breath be balanced and not shift around during activity.

  1. Pack Weight

A good rule is that your dog should not carry more than 25% of their body weight. This percentage is for dogs that are healthy and physically conditioned to carry the extra weight. Start out light and work up. If your dog is older or not in top shape then less weight is better. Have you dog carry things that will get used along the trip. Like his or her food, so their pack gets lighter as the trip goes on.

  1. Booties

Boots for dogs! These are great for dogs with soft paws that are not conditioned for long hikes day after day. But these booties often come off easily, so pack extras. Get your dog accustomed to the booties prior to your outing. Fit test them in the comfort of your home and try them out around the neighborhood prior.

  1. Microchips and Tags

Have you pet micro-chipped. In the case that your loved one ever goes missing, this increases the odds of them being reunited. Tags, Tags and more tags. When your dog is roughing it on a hike tags get lost or damaged. It is best to always have extras on your dog. We like to have two on the collar and one on their harness.

  1. Safety Lights

When night rolls around you need a headlamp or lamp. Keep your dog easily visible with a LED collar or glow sticks. We like the solar/usb rechargeable LED collars. If that is not an option, pack glow sticks, or even an extra headlamp and put it around your dog’s neck like a collar. Works great and this way you have an extra headlamp and your dog is easily visible… One less thing to carry

  1. Coats and Rain Coats

Depending on climate and where you are hiking, it is important to prepare yourself and your dog for the weather. Pack a coat & rain coat for your fur family. Helps keep your dog dry and not smelling like a wet dog. Also, consider packing a cooling bandana for warmer climates. They work great.

Chocolate Lab Hiking
Either Bring Your Dogs Coat or Be Prepared to Give Yours Up
  1. Treats

We all love snacks during a long hike, same goes for your fur family. Clip a treat bag to your pack or belt and reward them throughout the hike. It will help keep their energy and spirits up. Also helps with training them along the way.

  1. Have Fun!

Enjoy this time with your fur family. They will surely enjoy it.

What you do you consider an absolute must have when hiking with your dog? Let us know!