Archive for 2014

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09 Jul 14

Summer pet safety-Heat kills ...

By Nancy E. Hassel,

Summertime, summertime, sum-sum-summertime! Summertiiimmmme!  While we are enjoying the warm weather and summer activities – our pets may not be.  One thing many people tend to forget or not even think of is pet safety and heat.

While there are many ways your pet can overheat; too much exercise in the heat of the day; squished face pets like bulldogs, pugs, Frenchies, Shihtzus who can’t breath that great to begin with – they have a hard time with the heat; and lack of access to water for your pets especially if they are outside for any length of time in this hot and humid weather.

Of course this time of year the major concern is pets left in cars.  It amazes me year after year, that I still see people on a warm day leaving the windows open a crack and leaving their very furry dogs in the car – while they go into a store. According to a study done by San Francisco University, and if you haven’t seen this video of a veterinarian sitting in a hot car which shows how quickly temps rise during a heat wave.

Why not try it yourself, without your pet of course.  Next time it is a beautiful 75 -80 degrees, go sit in your parked car crack the windows a bit and sit in there for 10 -15 minutes. Don’t cheat and drink water or put the AC on.  Now imagine yourself in a fur coat without the ability to sweat. Are you hot yet?

Sometimes people think it’s ok to run into the store for 5-minutes during the summer and leave their pets in the car.  But what if you get stuck in the store, there is a long line, problem at the register, etc., and there you are in the air-conditioned store while your pet is sweltering in the heat, causing heat exhaustion or worse death.

What to do if you see a pet left in the car during during the warm spring, summer and fall months:

  • Call Animal Control of the town the car is located in.
  • Call the police, tell them the location, make/model color of the car, give them the license plate number.
  • Stay until the authorites arrive to be sure the pet was safely evacuated from the hot car.
  • A great tip is to program the Animal Control (Animal shelter) phone #’s to the town and surrounding towns you live in, into your phone contacts so you can access them immediately.

Pet owners should also know if you are caught doing this or someone reports your car with a pet in it to the police, the police have the right to break into to your car with whatever means necessary, call animal control and have your pet seized. You may be issued a summons, arrested for animal cruelty, or more. So the next time you are running up to the supermarket on a hot day, please, please, please leave your pets at home in the AC!

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25 Jun 14

New Dog Parks on LI! ...

By Nancy E. Hassel,

In the past few weeks two new dog parks have opened on Long Island for dog owners and their pups to enjoy.

The first opening on Sunday, June 8, 2014 was held in the village of Southampton with a ribbon cutting ceremony with Mayor Mark Elpey with his wife Marianne and their dog along with the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons, (ARF) and the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation who also hosted Hampton’s Dog Walk immediately following.

Zoe Kamitses of ARF and Mayor Mark Epley of Southampton Village

This much needed new addition boasts 1-full acre of fenced in doggie bliss.  At the opening approximately 100 dogs were running, playing, rolling in the grass as their owners looked on with joy.  100 dogs, not one incident doggie growls – almost as if they all knew this was their place to just be and have fun.

The park is adorned with benches, poop pick up bag stations, an adorable sculpture of a dog – but of course.  There is also a founders rock, which the dogs were, well marking as you can imagine.   This park is a wonderful addition to the already dog friendly village of Southampton in which a lot of the beaches you can bring your dogs to and also have area hiking trails.  And now residents do not have to drive up to Springs in East Hampton where the only other dog park on the South Fork is located.  The Lola Prentice Dog park is located right in the heart of Southampton Village on Windmill lane next to the police station.  There is free parking right in front of the park and is open from dawn to dusk.

The organizers of the park are looking into to bringing in a water line into the park to install a pump or watering station.  While the park is one open acre – their may be plans to make a section of the park for little dogs.

To see more pictures from the opening day of the park, click here!

The 2nd dog park that opened was this past Saturday, June 21, 2014 in Dix Hills – however it is not a fenced in park but beautiful woodland trails nearly 2-miles at the Dix Hills Park.  Techinically it always had dogs being walked in there, but it is now officially a dog friendly place to walk with your dog.  LI-Dog was on hand for the ribbon cutting as well as officials from the Town of Huntington, and many excited dog owners.  LI-Dog lead a Pack Walk through the trails, gave out maps to anyone who was there to follow along, and information about the park.  To see more pictures from the park opening click here! Contact LI-Dog for more information about the park.

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11 Jun 14

Max, Furever in our hearts ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

As sad as I am to write this post, I want to first thank everyone who has reached out to me in the last few days to send their sympathies, tell me how much they loved seeing Max’s smiling face, or how he could play hard to get with them, and how he had a great life.  Over the past 6-months, Max had mast cell tumors that had spread and, while he was going to the vet about every two weeks for months for re-checks and was on all kinds of supplements, herbs, medications – about a week ago his health rapidly started to decline.  On Sunday evening I had to make the decision no pet owner wants to make, but if you have ever owned a pet you just know when the time is to make that decision.  Max was in a lot of distress, could hardly walk, was very lethargic and without getting into too many gross details would not have lived much longer on his own.  I did not think I was going to have to make the descision that soon – but I did not want him to suffer any more for my selfishness of keeping him around longer.  He passed peacefully Sunday evening at the vets office around 9:20ish pm, knew I was there and was actually already sleeping.

I know many of you have gone through this, recently even – and its not easy whether your pet was 3 or nearly 13 (Max would have been 13 on July 1, 2014).  But here’s what I will ask, celebrate your pets life, Max’s life by thinking of all the joy a pet brings to you. Make a donation to a local animal shelter, whether it is monetary, or call and ask what supplies they need.  Volunteer if you can, foster if you can, adopt if you can.

I could literally write a book with all of Max’s antics, (move over Marley!), his personality, crazy silly goofy things he would do.  And while he had his very own personality traits or behaviors if you will, that weren’t always perfect, (I am not a dog owner in denial!), he was however a smiling breed ambassador for American Pit Bull Terriers everywhere.  And he was a good dog, yea he had his quircks, but he was a really good dog. Max loved the water, beach, woods and just loved to run and have fun!  I adopted him from Out of the Pits in October 2001, Halloween weekend – and he brought a ton of joy to my life and many others that knew him.  And as someone just posted on my Facebook wall – we have to thank them because our pets have brought so many friends and amazing people into our lives just by meeting through out pets.

Many of our readers have loved the ‘Where in the World is Max‘ contest over the years – and Max and I had a lot of fun showing up at different places around LI to take his photo.  While you may not know it, he wasn’t that fond of the camera and there were many shots taken to get that shot just right. (Seriously he was a pain in the neck with the camera, would look away a LOT as soon as I pulled the camera or my phone out.  Most of the time I had to trick him to get him to look at me, stinker!)  In our crazy busy world of I will do it tomorrow – stop and take a moment and look at your dog and whatever you were thinking you do tomorrow try to do it today. Take your dog on that adventure, even if it is just a walk through the woods – you will be glad you did.

And if you never owned a Pit Bull, are one of those people who still believe the BS about the breed, in Max’s memory do yourself a favor and get to know the breed – you won’t be disappointed, and you will probably feel just a bit foolish believing all the hype and realizing they are after all, just dogs.  One of the most loyal, fun loving, goofy, athletic and sweetest breeds of dogs you will ever meet.

RIP bud, miss you terribly. Maximus, Max, Stinky Pants, Moo Moo, Stinker, Buddy – July 1, 2001 – June 8, 2014.

See below for a few of probably of hundreds if not thousands of pics of Mr. Max!

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27 May 14

Pets events, Hamptons Style ...

by Nancy E. Hassel,

The official start to summer has begun and with it are many, many pet events taking place all across our isle.  Just this past weekend I attended two events in the Hamptons were all about pets, the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation (SASF), had a wine tasting benefit at the Southampton Center, (former Parish Art Museum), where celebrities, the mayor of Southampton and many supporters came out to enjoy the early evening benefit.  As you enterd you were greeted by some of their precious shelter animals that are for adoption too.  One blue pit bull had the best ears I have seen – think French bulldog ears on a pit!  This dog was so, so sweet and cute – they currently have about 200 animals available for adoption.  If you have never been to their shelter located in Hampton Bays – you should – it is a beautiful facility and they emplore play groups with many of their dogs so they are socialized!

From there the SASF event in Southampton, I then headed to the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons, (ARF), annual Designer Showcase at their beautiful thrift store in Sagaponack (located minutes from Bridgehampton village).  The house turned thrift store has each room decorated by different interior designers, each with a different flare – something for everyone to enjoy.  Not to mention the adorable pets they too had on hand in their mobile unit.  I personally wanted to take home the two 8-week old sibling kittens that were having a blast playing with each other. OMC (That’s Oh My Cat people!) they were just too cute. If you missed the showcase – that’s ok you can stop in the thrift store anytime seven days a week and shop and know your purchases are going towards rescue animals.

This summer while out on the east end, be sure to pick up a copy of the much anticipated Hamptons Pet Magazine which will be available the 3rd week of June (on or about June 25th).  This premeir collectors edition issue will feature: Pet Culture; Health & Wellness; Grooming; Travel; Training; Celebrity Insights; Seasonal Health; Pet Fashion; Animal Rescue & Welfare; High Tech Pets and more. The ultimate Summer magazine for Pets and People and written by local and national pet writers.

If you are one to summer in the Hamptons, or visit for a weekend or two – you definitely want to check out the upcoming pet events below and don’t forget about the North Fork – which also offer many wonderful events starting with this weekend at Baiting Hollow Farm Horse Rescue’s ‘The Mane Event’ benefitting their Horse Rescue taking place on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 7pm. Click here for info.

Here are a few upcoming East End events:

And be sure to sign up for our weekly Pet Events Newsletter so you do miss any events happening in the tri-state area and beyond! SIGN UP HERE!

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18 May 14

Pet products for Spring! ...

By Nancy E. Hassel,

It’s that time of year again, finally warmer nicer weather and everyone is coming out of their hibernation with their pets!  So I ask, do you think about what pet products you need for the spring that will help get your pet while out on a hike or in your local dog friendly park?  You may think of heartworm, flea and tick preventative but what about training aids and products that could help your pet in a bad situation?

Our list for some of the must have products begin with something so simple, but is a must!  The 2 in 1, flea and tick comb made by The Company of Animals – this simple product can help save your pet from pesky ticks as it has a tick remover built in and the comb part is a great way to comb your pets fur to see if he or she has any fleas.

If you are like me, you don’t want to use topical treatments to deal with flea and ticks.   It’s a life style choice, do you have time to check your pet and how you feel about topicals. But after owning 2 dogs in tick infested Long Island – and never using any topical preventatives, (or monthly pill to get rid of fleas), I have never had a problem – why I have used products just like this flea comb to thoroughly check my pets – especially after they have been outside.  This 2 in 1 comb also has a little hole already in it to pop it on your key chain.  And it’s small enough that you can easily put it in your pocket or treat bag holder like the ones from SnapDog Designs. A must if you are training with your dog, or even just for a walk in the woods – it perfectly fits most phones, keys and of course treats for your dog too.

If your looking for some training aids, and have been thinking about training your dog with clicker training – you must get Clix Multi-Clicker.  This clicker you can even change the volume of the click – how cool is that.

It’s great as my Max who is almost 13 doesn’t have the best hearing anymore – but he can definitely hear this clicker on #2 volume level. If you are new to clicker training, hiring a professional dog trainer to show you the ropes will help you and your dog tremendously.  Someone local who specializes in clicker training is Mira Lebstein of Click-n-Train Your Dog.

What about if you are out walking your dog and and there is a loose dog approaching – a product that could help in this situation, (aside from your loud booming voice while standing your ground – telling the other dog to ‘go home’ or ‘get out of here!’), is the Pet Corrector also by In the Company of Animals.  It is a pressurized hand held aerosol type of product that emits a loud hissing sound to stop unwanted behavior.  It is not so loud that it will hurt your dogs ears, but it will definitely get their attention – or just may be the tool you need when an unwanted loose dog is approaching. It can easily fit in your pocket or training bag.

While out and about, you should also always have poop bags to pick up after your pet.  These days there is really no excuse for not picking up and with so many bio-degradeable products it’s an easy way to be conscious of the environment too.  My favorite is Earth Rated Poop Bags, it clips onto your leash, and even has a holder on the back of the dispenser to put the filled bag on until you get to a proper trash receptable, so you don’t have to hold the bag!  You can find these bags at nearly every pet supply store.

Another great idea is to have a portable pet fist aid kit with you, or at the very least in your car for your pet.  Scrapes, cuts and insect bites can and will happen to your pup, so being able to address it immediately is important.

And while you may not think of this, you should apply pet safte sunscreen before heading outdoors.  Especially to pets that have a thin fur coat and light colored pets.  Applying it to the top of their snouts, ears and head helps with sunburn.  My Max is mostly white so if I know he is going to be out for a while in the sun, I put sunscreen on him.  The same goes for all natural pet friendly bug spray – this will help a lot if you have a dog that is prone to being a mosquito or black fly magnet.  One product I like is Buzz Guard by Earth Heart, it works well keeping pests away from Max!  And it is safe and all natural so you can feel confident about using it.

It’s better to be prepared and have great products with you while out with your pup, whether it’s on a long hike or just around the block.  You will have peace of mind knowing you can just enjoy the walk – but that you are prepared to enjoy the season too.