Benefits of Dog Enrichment Programs

Have you ever heard about the wonders that pet enrichment programs offer for your pet’s health and energy? There are many different types of programs that can be tailored t.o different needs, but overall, enrichment programs are designed to assist with guiding dogs navigate through their senses, drain excess energy, and become well-trained overall. 
Keep reading to find out some of the biggest benefits from enrolling your pet in an enrichment program! 

  • Training – One of the primary benefits of dog enrichment programs is the help of special trainers into teaching your furry pets how to engage in diverse activities such as tricks, social interaction, amongst others. Be sure to look for programs that incorporate specific training for your pet’s needs. 
  • Daily walks – By keeping your pets moving and energized, which will reduce the need for late afternoon walks that you must take them on after long days of work. 
  • Stimulation – Enrichment programs are often focused on sensory stimulation for your pets. Through diverse activities such as exposure to music, integration of different spice smells, and introducing to different textures;  dogs are able to effectively stimulate their tactile, odor and ear senses.
  • Social interaction- Another great benefit of enrichment programs is the chance for pets to interact with one another. Increased social interactions enable them to play together, learn to share, and establish appropriate interaction behaviors. 
  • Fun games! – Although these programs do require lots of focus and learning, many activities are done through fun games and activities. Dogs get to play with their trainers, other pets, and even by themselves. This enables them, to again, drain energy, but also improve overall physical health and performance. 
  • Assist with illness- For animals going through different illnesses, you can also look for enrichment programs tailored specifically to dealing with stress relief and injury prevention. 

Looking for your pet to join an enrichment program? Contact us today to learn more about what our programs have to offer!

Pet-Safe Gardens & Plants | Animal America Pet Resort

She likes to do gardening with her helper

It’s March, and that means that we’re welcoming spring— and with it, gardening season.

Whether you’re an avid gardener who is new to pet ownership, a pet owner who’s new to gardening or somewhere in between, let’s take a look at ways that you can build a garden that’s safe for your furry friends!

Dog-Friendly Garden

If you’re a dog parent, chances are good that the same space that you’re planning to have your garden is a space that’s frequented by your canine companion. So it’s important to create a space that is safe for your dog and also keeps your plants safe from your dog!

An important part of planning your garden with your pup in mind is to create clear paths through the garden that can guide your dog to designated spaces where he can play or dig—away from delicate plants. The areas of your garden closest to the areas frequented by pets ideally should be bordered with robust plants like lavender, geranium and shrub roses.

Avoid potentially dog-toxic plants such as chrysanthemums, hydrangeas, tomatoes and wisteria. If you can’t do without these potentially hazardous favorites, make sure you keep them securely out of your pup’s reach with some combination of raised beds, thick borders and fences.

Looking to make your garden extra dog-friendly? Try growing some plants that dogs can eat like green beans, blueberries, dandelions and parsley.

It should go without saying, but make sure you don’t use toxic chemicals in any space shared with your dog. Make sure your garden and your storage space for tools are both secured to keep your pup out of places he shouldn’t be!

Cat Garden

More of a cat person? Whether you want to make your garden a sanctuary for your outdoor cat or the local strays, let’s take a look at ways to make your garden more cat-friendly!

First, pick a portion of your garden to grow some plants that are more attractive to cats. This will give kitty space to frolic and help prevent other plants from getting dug up, gnawed on or trampled. Great plants for cats include catnip, catmint, wheat grass and lavender.

Avoid exposure to toxic substances by staying away from chemical pesticides or soil and avoiding plants that are toxic to cats, such as tomatoes, lilies, ivy and onions. Because cats can climb, keeping these in raised beds or behind fences won’t work well—it’s best to avoid planting toxic plants any place your cat could be!

Looking for a boarding facility that will treat your pet like family? Visit the Animal America Pet Resort website to learn more about out services and our staff!

Preparing your Dog for Travel with PawHootz

Animal America pawhootz blog

Preparing your dog for travel can be easy when you have the right pet resort. Many pet travel experts, like Airpets America, partner with pet resorts like PawHootz to provide many necessary services for traveling dogs. From customizing a crate to providing access to a USDA accredited veterinarians for microchipping, health certificates and vaccinations, PawHootz can be the answer to many of the intricacies of dog relocations.

Socialization

Dogs can sometimes become nervous when they are not used to being around strangers. Our staff is comprised of many pet care professionals and by the end of a dog’s stay, he or she will be used to being walked, examined and groomed by many different people. This allows a dog to get used to the idea of being around strangers because they’ve become trained by experienced, kind and professional staff. By the time one of these dogs needs to travel he’ll be used to people approaching him and will be able to stay relaxed. Our dog trainers on staff that can teach dogs to love their travel crates. By using a reward system, the dog goes into their crate on cue and begins considering it a safe haven. 

Safety

Our pet resort is a great option because it is designed to make each dog’s stay active, fun and safe. Our experienced and certified staff provide many levels of exercise for dogs that lounge with us. Join day camp sessions, supervised groups of dogs playing together or a session of Frisbee catching. We even offer some quality cuddle time with a pet care specialist. Our top priority remains the wellbeing of each dog and will do everything to keep them happy and healthy.

Health

Our resort is connected to a USDA accredited Veterinarian who can provide microchipping, vaccinations, health certificates, and titer testing before travel, all without having to leave the safety of the resort? Many countries request for a waiting period after vaccinations, to make sure the dog is fully immunized before they enter a foreign country, so it’s a good idea to allow a pet resort to provide a safe place for dogs to fulfill the necessary time after microchipping and vaccinations. 

Taking a trip soon and need to find a home for your furry friend? Give us a call or schedule an appointment today!

Keeping Clean Between Baths | Animal America Pet Resort

Funny portrait of a welsh corgi pembroke dog showering with shampoo. Dog taking a bubble bath in grooming salon.

Routine baths are important for keeping your canine companion looking clean and smelling fresh. But bathing too frequently isn’t an option when it comes to keeping your pet’s coat healthy and properly moisturized.

So, what can you do to freshen up between baths?

Keep Up With Grooming Needs

Regular brushing is an important part of good pet care and a good way to keep your dog’s skin and coat shiny and healthy. Brushing also eliminates and prevents painful tangles or matting, removes loose hair to keep your pet feeling cooler—and your air feeling cleaner—and can help you to spot any unusual sores or parasites.

It’s recommended to do some basic maintenance brushing at least once a week, although breeds with longer or thicker coats may require daily brushing. Make brushing time a fun bonding time by using a soft bristled brush, soothing tones and ample treats!

You should also brush your dog after a swim or any other time it gets wet—including after baths—to avoid tangles, mats and that wet dog smell. Extra brushing is also needed during shedding seasons for dogs with thick undercoats.

Keep Things Fresh

Besides brushing, there are various methods that can be used between baths to keep your pup smelling and looking fresh.

Dry shampoo can be rubbed and brushed into your pup’s fur to neutralize odors without drying out your pup’s skin. Dog-specific dry shampoos are available at some stores, or you can make your own at home by combining three to four tablespoons of cornstarch with three to four teaspoons of baking soda.

Pet-friendly wet wipes, baby wipes or damp towels can be used to give your dog a quick, refreshing wipe-down! Pay especially close attention to wiping the paws and removing any stuck on grime.

Is it time for your pup’s next bath? Visit the Animal America Pet Resort website for the full menu of pet grooming services!

The Best Breeds for Small Spaces | Animal America Pet Resort

Living in a smaller apartment or condo is no reason that you can’t have the canine companion that you’ve always dreamed of!

Step one is to find a home that allows you to have a pet. Step two is to pick out a furry friend that will get along well even in a small space.

Let’s take a look at some breeds that are particularly well-suited to living in apartments or condos:

Basset Hounds

Basset Hounds are medium-sized dogs that are known for their charming, mournful eyes and patient personalities. These pups are loyal and strong and also mild and agreeable.

If you have a low-energy lifestyle or want to live in a smaller space with a low-key companion, the Basset Hound is a great choice!

Bulldogs

Bulldogs are also low-key companions that get along very well in small spaces! These wrinkly rascals may look fearsome, but they’re very gentle and quiet and don’t need that much space or time outdoor aside from daily walks.

They also have a short coat that doesn’t shed much, making them the perfect low-maintenance furry-friend for urban apartment dwellers.

Chihuahuas

These tiny puppers are popular among apartment dwellers because of their small stature and affectionate personalities.

In spite of the common myths, Chihuahuas are not unhappy or high-strung—but they do need to be socialized and given lots of love from their humans.

Greyhounds

Greyhounds may be known for being large but lanky and speedy, but these dogs love to laze about an apartment.

These laid-back pups are quiet while indoors and only require a comfy place to lounge while their humans are away. However, they can also keep up with active companions and are happy to go on outdoor adventures, too!

No matter what kind of furry friend you pick, we’ve got all the services you need to keep him or her expertly trained and exercised! Check our website for the full menu of Animal America Pet Resort services.

Announcement! Our First Certified Professional Animal Care Operator

Announcement!
We are proud to announce our new Certified Professional Animal Care Operator (CPACO). Karoline Brewer, the founder and manager of Animal America, is now a member of an elite group of pet care professionals who have successfully demonstrated their comprehensive pet care knowledge and passion for pet safety. Karoline is the only Certified Professional Animal Care Operator (CPACO) in the Dallas metroplex!
The Professional Animal Care Certification Council (PACCC) recently conducted an independent certification exam for pet care providers. The exam content was created by a team of industry expert volunteers under the guidance of the Professional Testing Corporation (PTC), the third-party testing organization that administered the exam and certified the results. To initially qualify to take the CPACO exam, Karoline had to meet minimum education requirements, have a minimum of five years of experience with at least one year in an operator position, maintain membership in a pet-related association or organization, engage in ongoing community service, and provide letters of reference from veterinarians and other pet care industry professionals.
The in-depth 175-question examination covered animal care topics including health, nutrition, dog fight and bite protocol, on-leash and off-leash interaction, sanitation, dog behavior, and temperament, dog body language, dog training, animal and handler safety, vaccination protocol, workflow management, pathogen control, emergency, quarantine protocols, air quality standards, staff management expectations, professional business and financial management, and much more.
Karoline’s certification represents what Animal America intends to be a growing team of independently certified pet care professionals. We look forward to the next opportunity to sit for the exam. “We are so proud to be able to demonstrate through PACCC’s independent certification our dedication to pet safety for our clients and community,” said Animal America. “Pets are family members and their ‘parents’ should feel confident they are receiving the highest level of care.”
For more information about PACCC and independent certification, visit www.paccert.org.

Cozy Indoor Activities | Animal America Pet Resort

The weather outside is less than delightful, so that means more quick walks and less time outside enjoying fun games of fetch. But there’s no need to let the brisk weather keep you and your furry friend from enjoying lots of time being active together!

Indoor Exercises

It’s easier than you might think to turn cold and dreary indoor days into days full of fun exerciseswith the creative use of toys and living room space!

  • Play indoor fetch by tossing lightweight balls indoors. Just make sure that you play in a large room or hallway and remove any breakables.
  • Let your pup chase bubbles. Blow non-toxic bubbles made for dogs or kids and teach your dog to chase them. It’s fun and surprisingly good exercise!
  • Play tug of war. All you need for this activity is a rope or other tug toy. This game is very fun and great exercise for both you and your dog!
  • Hide and find treats. All you need for this game is yummy treats and lots of places to hide them.
  • Set up an agility course for your pup using common household items like boxes, broomsticks, towels and chairs.

Other Indoor Activities

Indoor time is also a great time to relax on catch up on other activities with your canine companion.

You can make some time for a training session! Whether you’re teaching your pup new tricks or reviewing commands from training school, you just need some treats, some patience and plenty of time with your furry friend.

Indoor time is also a great time to take care of your dog’s basic grooming. Spend a little extra time pampering your pup during her routine brushing and nail trimming!

Want your pup to have a day of indoor activities with other canine companions? Visit the Animal America Pet Resort website to get more information about our Dog Day Camp!

Winter Grooming Needs | Animal America Pet Resort

Gone are the dog days of summer, and with it the need for giving frequent baths, brushing off shedding fur and wiping off muddy paws. But grooming needs haven’t completely disappeared with the warm days!

Let’s take a look at some of the essentials of caring for your pup’s coat and more during the winter months.

Why Winter Grooming Is Important

Winter may not have all of the dirt and sweat that comes with the great outdoor adventures of summer, but keeping your dog clean and well-groomed is still important to its health and well-being. You wouldn’t skip bathing or maintaining your hair and nails just because it’s cold out—so you shouldn’t do that to your canine companion either!

In the winter, it’s especially important that you take extra good care of your dog’s paws. Watch the paw pads and nails for salt and snow, and make sure that you carefully wipe off paws after walks, or even try out dog boots for the winter.

Winter Coat Care

Dogs who need regular bathing and brushing to maintain their coats don’t stop needing it just because the weather has gotten colder. It’s still OK to give your pup baths as needed—just make sure that he is completely dry before going outside!

Continue to brush your dog on a regular basis to reduce matting and keep natural oils distributed throughout the fur and skin. You can also still take your dog for haircuts, but opt for longer styles during the winter to keep him warm.

Moisturize!

Like their humans, dogs are prone to dry skin in the winter time. It’s important while bathing and grooming to keep an eye out to make sure that they don’t have itchy dry skin, and also pay attention to signs of excessive dryness on their delicate noses and paw pads.

Keeping your pup both hydrated and routinely groomed with these tips will help to keep its skin smooth and itch-free. Paws and noses can also be soothed with pet-safe oils or balms after walks!

Need a little extra help grooming your furry friend this winter? Animal America Pet Resort has a service for that! Visit our website for our full dog grooming menu.

Fun Winter Activities | Animal America Pet Resort

The weather outside is frightful, but the time you spend with your furry friends doesn’t need to be anything less than delightful! Let’s have a fun time looking at some activities that you and your pup can do to stay warm even when it’s so cold outside.

Even if there’s nothing more that you’d love to do than sit inside where it’s warm, it’s important that your dog gets the exercise he needs. So start with making sure that you’re still taking your dog for short walks even when it’s cold outside! Just make sure that you dress both yourself and your pup appropriately, and try to time your walks for the warmest part of the day.

Is your dog averse to the cold or getting bundled up? Try investing in a pet treadmill or bringing your pup to a pet gym or dog daycare.

Winter is also a great time to spend time inside teaching your pup tricks or playing games. So stock up on plenty of treats and get ready to have some fun time with some indoor activities!

Help your pup burn energy fast by using his favorite toys to play tug-o-war or monkey in the middle. Make sure that you let your pup win from time to time to keep him engaged in the game.

Another way that you and your dog can have fun inside is with a game of hide and seek. If you’re the one hiding, this game works best if your pup has mastered the “sit” and “stay” commands, or if you have another person that can hold your dog still while you hide. Alternatively, keep your dog active and searching while you relax and watch by hiding treats or favorite toys!

Looking for a great way for your pup to exercise without dealing with the great outdoors? Try our Animal America Pet Resort Dog Day Camp service. We’re so sure you’ll love it that your pup’s first visit is free!

Gator’s Rescue Story – How Animal America Helped Gator Find His Fur-ever Home

Gator’s Rescue Story – How Animal America Helped Gator Find His Fur-ever Home

This good boy up above is Gator! Gator was found by the Bedford Police department, unchipped and not even reported missing. He was placed at the Bedford shelter and unfortunately, he wasn’t able to find his forever home. This is where Animal America came in to help!

Our Partnership With The Bedford Shelter

We partner with the Bedford Shelter to help train rescue dogs an increase their chances of being adopted. After learning about Gator’s story, one of our professional dog trainers brought him to Animal America, and gave him the training and social skills he needed to be adopted into a good home. Following this, we did our part in letting members of the community know about our new furry friend – resulting in Gator finding his fur-ever home! 

Professional Dog Training 

Before being brought to Animal America, Gator might not have been able to find his forever home. Thanks to our wonderful staff, we were able to help make finding a good home for him a reality. We are dedicated to staying up to date with the most relevant training methods, whether through treats or toy motivation, our rewards-based methods of training ensure success. 

Need help training your dog to be a good boy or girl? Join us at Animal America Pet Resort for our training classes!