How to Prepare Your Apartment for a New Pet

Bringing a new pet home is a life-changing experience. Pets — particularly dogs and cats — help relieve stress, anxiety, and sadness, as well as alleviate loneliness and even improve mental health. However, no matter what kind of fluffer you choose to adopt or buy, balancing apartment living with pet parenting is sometimes a bit difficult. A short preparation period is necessary for you to welcome your new pet successfully.

Whether it is a dog, a cat, or even a hamster or a fish that you want to bring home, your apartment likely needs a few changes. Living with a pet in your apartment can be challenging, so we have prepared a short guide on the steps you need to take to prepare for it.

1. Make Sure You Are Allowed to Have a Puppy or a Cat in Your Apartment

When preparing for a puppy or a kitten, be sure your apartment and neighborhood are pet friendly. Before signing the adoption paperwork, check with your landlord. Re-evaluate your lease and check if you are allowed to bring a pet into the apartment. If your apartment is not pet friendly, you can start looking for another one. 

Los Angeles is one of the most pet-friendly cities in the country, so finding an apartment in Los Angeles for you and your new pet will be easy. Also, if applicable, discuss this initiative with your roommate to make sure they are comfortable with it.

Consider how much space you have available before getting a pet. Certain pets are quite anxious; therefore, they require a safe haven away from loud noises and other stress factors. Some dog breeds –such as German Shepherds and Labradors — are not ideal for tiny apartment living since they become bored quickly and have high energy.

On the other hand, some of the best dog breeds for apartment life are the Pug, the cutest couch potato in the world, the French Bulldog, which is adorable, petite, and rarely barks, and the Bichon Frise, a fluffy, playful companion who can adore just about everyone.

Consider yourself prepared to adopt a pet if you have verified that you are allowed to have one in your apartment and it fits its size, is comfy, and doesn’t require more space than you can supply.

2. Create a Welcoming Environment for Your Pet

Usually, it’s best to let the pets explore and discover the new place at a pace they are comfortable with. Spreading their things around their home and letting them sniff or inspect each spot can help them feel like the home is their territory. Pets need the visual stimulation that the outside provides, so ensure they have access to sunlight and a nice view over the neighborhood.

A pet has needs and requirements, so there are some items you should buy before bringing it home. First, provide a safe place for your new pet and arrange its own little corner: a cat tree, a scratcher, a little bed, blankets and toys, like like our own Pacific Pups Products toys, a food and water bowl, and grooming equipment. Make a world for your pet right down to its level.

Then, find the best veterinarian and follow his recommendations to create a plan and get supplies such as vet-approved food, pet-safe home cleansers, flea and tick treatment, treats, and grooming tools.

3. Start Cat and Dog Proofing the Apartment

Secure items that can be destroyed by curious pets (electric wires, chargers that can be chewed, glass vases, plants, big TVs). Your belongings may be saved through precautions. Lock the doors to the washers and dryers and cover the garbage can and air vents. 

Keep your pricey possessions in a secure room. Lock up the medicines, chemicals, and cosmetics. If you reside on a high floor, keep your balcony always closed. Close the toilet lid and restrict access to dangerous areas.

Careful planning in advance can help you make sure that having a puppy in your apartment does not lead to trouble. When preparing for a puppy, bear in mind that some dogs dislike the taste of bitter things. Using apple spray on your furniture may prevent the puppy from scratching and chewing it.

4. Educate Yourself while Preparing for a Puppy or a Cat

Having a puppy or cat in an apartment implies having some knowledge about it. Familiarize yourself with the pet’s growth stages and what to expect at each stage, as well as frequent health issues and personality quirks. Spend time observing and studying their behavior patterns, and if necessary, seek support on how to train your pet to be calm and responsive to your commands.

Also, some breeds of dogs or cats are high-maintenance and demand more care. For example, Persian cats require daily brushing and frequent coat trimming to avoid matting. Siamese and other fluffy breeds, like the Maine coon, require regular grooming and care. 

Due to their lack of fur, Sphynx cats should be consistently washed to eliminate dirt and oil from their skin. They should also be protected from the sun. Learn the characteristics of the breed of dog or cat you are looking to adopt and get ready to care for it properly.


Preparing for a puppy or kitten is not easy, and it might feel like you have a small baby in your house that you must care for and keep out of trouble. However, a pet may be your greatest and most faithful buddy. Preparing to welcome pets into your house only helps to make your future everyday living with them simpler. So, follow these tips before embarking on a new adventure with your new companion.

Article by Lisa Smith

Photo by Yuliya kota

How to Read Your Dog for a Stronger Relationship

According to an article called ‘Dogs and People: Exploring the Human-Dog Connection’, domestic dogs are regarded as humankind’s earliest companion, with a bond that has endured throughout centuries. Dogs have taken on a variety of roles in our lives: guardians, working partners, beasts of burden, hunting guides, and above all, companions. Over the years, both humans and canines developed different cues that allow us to tap into these bonds and communicate with one another. In this article, we’ll provide you with tips on how to read your dog and improve your overall relationship:

Look at their body language

Because we aren’t mind-readers, dog owners rely on body language to give us hints on what dogs are feeling. As highlighted in The Dog’s Mind: Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior, we’ve built up a substantial body of knowledge on the psychology of dog behavior. We know that they do have a unique way of perceiving the world around them, and can suffer from stress or other negative emotions. Body language — from their eyes and fur, down to their tails — can tell you something new.

In terms of stress, it’s important to look at your dog’s posture and mouth. A calm, relaxed dog will have four legs even on the ground, with no muscles strained and a slightly open, relaxed snout. On the other hand, fearful dogs may arch away from you and keep their body close to the floor, muscles strained. Finally, dogs may have the “zoomies” — where they run around erratically — as a way to blow off stress. Keeping an eye on these signs, and looking out for potential stressors can greatly improve your relationship with your pet.

Pay attention to sound

Dogs do have verbal cues, which helps us figure out what they’re thinking and feeling. Quiet, calm panting that sounds like light breathing is a good sign, and this breathing becomes slightly heavier when they’re energetic or on-the-move. However, heavy panting or whining means your dog is in need of attention, as they’re expressing discomfort. Common dog sounds we know like barking or howling are usually done to express themselves, whether this is directed to you, to other dogs in the area, or strangers they don’t trust. Interestingly, it’s not just about the sounds a dog makes either. Canines are particularly sensitive to the things they hear. Recent research from the University of Glasgow suggests music can affect a dog’s behavior, and even calm them down if they’re feeling antsy or restless. Moreover, you should definitely pay attention to your tone of voice when speaking to a dog. Other studies suggest that dogs understand human language, particularly when the high-pitched “baby talk” tone is used for words like treat or walk.

Observe them in the company of other dogs

In his book Wonderdog: How the Science of Dogs Changed the Science of Life, UK-based wildlife expert and science writer Jules Howards notes that dogs have sociality built into their genes, and feel powerful attachments with one another. Thus, watching dogs at play with members of their own species can teach you a lot about your pet. For example, dogs tend to gravitate more towards other dogs that play similarly to them. From there, you may develop a better idea of how exactly your pup likes to play as well, like whether they prefer more high-energy or relaxed activities.

We’ve talked about helping older dogs socialize better with other canines in a previous post titled ‘How To Socialize An Older Dog’, and the same advice applies: let your dog hang out with other dogs you both already know. Think of your dog as a student, and the other dogs as their teacher; obviously, you’d want them to learn from a well-behaved dog with an even temperament. As a pet parent, you should spend a lot of time watching your fur babies, so you can understand their unique communication styles.

Article written by Ruth Justine

Exclusively for Pacific Pups Rescue

Image credit: Pexels

How To Socialize An Older Dog

Socializing an adult dog can be a challenging task, but it’s important to do in order to help them live a happy life. This is especially important if you’ve recently adopted dog that’s passed their puppy stage, as they may have had few positive experiences with other dogs and people. 

The good news is that there are a number of things you can do to help your older dog happily socialize with other dogs. Keep reading to better understand how to help your older dog get along with other canines.

1) Start In a Neutral Territory

When socializing a dog, starting in neutral territory is important. This means finding a place where your dog has no previous associations (or the dog they’re socializing with). 

The most common place to do this is outside, away from your home. Many people choose parks, but it could be anywhere neither of the dogs would claim as ‘their’ territory.

This helps remove the possibility of territorial aggression, which flares up if there are any areas or items around that one dog may feel possessive over. When you meet in a neutral place where neither dog has, in their mind, ownership, you substantially increase the chances of having a pleasant greeting.

If you’re unsure if a place is a neutral territory, just ask yourself if either dog would have any reason to be territorial or protective. If the answer is no, then it’s probably a good place to start socializing your dog.

2) First Social Introductions Should Be With Dogs You Know

When you’re first socializing your older dog, it’s best to do so with dogs you already know. This way, you can be more confident about how they’ll behave around your dog and a general idea of their temperament. 

If you don’t know the other dog well, there’s always the potential for things to go wrong. For example, suppose the other dog is overly excited or aggressive. In that case, it could scare your dog and make them hesitant to socialize in the future.

It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so when you’re first starting, only socialize with dogs that you know and trust. The best place to start is to do this with friends or family where you’ve spent time with the other dog and know the people who’ve trained them.

The first interactions are significant because they have a large impact on how your dog will socialize in the future. You can think of these first introductions as your dog being the student and the other dogs being their teacher. So naturally, you want to make sure the teachers you choose are well-behaved and know how to socialize well with other dogs.

The behavior they observe from the other dog(s) will shape how they behave around other dogs in the future. Of course, it’s not set in stone if things don’t go as planned, but it definitely sets your dog up for success when choosing well-behaved dogs to socialize with first.

3) Reward Good Behavior

One of the most important things to do when socializing your older dog is to reward them for good behavior. This could be anything from a treat to petting them and telling them they’re a good boy/girl. 

The key is to make sure you’re rewarding the behavior you want to see more of. For example, if your dog is being friendly and playful, praise them for it. 

On the other hand, if they’re showing signs of aggression or fear, you’ll want to avoid accidentally rewarding this behavior. This means giving them no attention after seeing them behave this way. 

Simply remove them from the situation and ignore them. One of a dog’s biggest rewards is getting their owner’s attention, so ignoring them is punishment in and of itself without having to be physical with them.

It’s crucial that you be consistent with what you reward and what you don’t reward. Dogs are very good at picking up on patterns, so if you’re not consistent, they’ll quickly catch on and start to ignore your commands.

4) Try New Interactions After Progress Is Made

Once you’ve made some progress with socializing your older dog, it’s time to start trying new things. 

This could be anything from meeting new dogs to going to new places. The key is slowly introducing new things and ensuring your dog is comfortable with each step before moving on to the next. 

For example, if you’re going to introduce your dog to a new dog, make sure to do it in a controlled environment where both dogs are on a leash. This way, you can prevent any fights from breaking out and make sure both dogs are comfortable.

Once your dog is comfortable meeting new dogs, you can start taking them to new places. This could be the dog park, going for a walk in a new neighborhood, or anything else you can think of. 

The key is to take things slow and not overwhelm your dog. If they start to show signs of stress or anxiety, it’s best to take a step back and make sure they’re comfortable with the current level of socialization before moving on.

5) Obedience Classes Are Always An Option

If you’re struggling to socialize your older dog, obedience classes are always an option. 

In these classes, your dog will be around other dogs and people in a controlled environment. This is a great way to help them create positive associations with socializing if you’re struggling to do it on your own. 

Obedience classes are also a great way to bond with your dog. These classes will teach you how to better communicate with your dog and understand their body language. 

This is an important skill to have when socializing your dog because it will allow you to better understand their needs and when they’re feeling uncomfortable.

2 Important Things To Keep In Mind

When socializing your older dog, there are two very important things to keep in mind. 

Firstly, don’t push them. If they’re not comfortable with a particular situation, don’t force them into it. This will only make things worse and make them more resistant to socializing in the future. 

Secondly, keep a close eye on their body language. Dogs communicate a lot through their body language, and it’s important to be able to understand it. 

For example, if a dog shows signs of stress, such as panting, yawning, or licking their lips, it’s a good idea to give them some space and remove them from the situation. 

By understanding your dog’s body language, you’ll be better able to read the situation and remove them if things turn for the worse.

Final Thoughts

Socializing an older dog can be challenging, but it’s possible with some patience and consistency. 

Remember to take things slow, be consistent with your rewards and punishments, and try new things gradually. If you’re struggling, obedience classes are always an option. 

Most importantly, keep a close eye on your dog’s body language and don’t push them if they’re not comfortable. 

By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to socializing your older dog in no time!


About the author: Alec Littlejohn is the lead editor at Pawscessories. He grew up in a family of vets, is a member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, and is a recognized author by the Dog Writers Association Of America.

Nutrition Feeding Guidelines For Your Dog

In the last couple of months, pet ownership in the US has soared. More than 90 million homes in America (70%) have pets. Dogs are the most popular pets, followed by cats and others. Modern science confirms that keeping a dog is good for the heart and mind.

Would you like to adopt a dog?

Just as your newfound furry buddy would boost your health and well-being, you ought to return the favor and treat them well. There is no better way to show love and care to your dog than to feed them well. Good nutrition and regular vet checkups will keep your dog healthy and happy. 

If you have no clue where to start, this guide can help you. Read on and learn the facts about dog nutrition. We’ll also give tips on what to look for in commercial dog foods. But first, here’s more about the nature of dogs.

Dogs are Omnivores

Your furry buddy is like you – omnivorous. That means a dog can feed on a mixture of plants and animal foods and survive. This issue often perplexes many dog owners. Experts from San Diego Vets explain that many assume that since dogs have wolf ancestry, feeding on plant material is against their DNA. But that’s not the case. Your dog can eat and digest a variety of plant and animal foods. Skipping either could result in malnutrition and problems in the gastrointestinal (GI) system.

With that out of the way, here are some facts about dogs’ nutrition.

All the Major Nutrients are Crucial

Your dog needs a balanced diet to stay healthy and thrive. The diet should consist of all the essential nutrients including, proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water. 

Whenever you go out to buy dog food, get products with the right mixture of nutrients. Some products have the words “complete balanced nutrition” on the label. This is a great way to start narrowing down on suitable brands. However, look for products that have the words “meets the nutritional requirements established by the American Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).”

Nutritional Requirements Vary with Age and Other Factors

As you shop for dog food, consider your dog’s age, lifestyle, and breed characteristics. The nutritional needs of dogs vary depending on their life stage and other physiological factors. A puppy’s nutritional needs are not the same as those of a young adult, pregnant or nursing dog, or senior pooch.

 According to the National Academies, daily nutrient allowances for different dogs are as follows:

  • A puppy weighing 12lb (33lb at maturity) requires 56 grams of crude protein, 21 grams of fats, 990K calories of energy, and traces (often under 1 gram) of vitamins and minerals.
  • An active adult dog weighing 33lb requires 25 grams of crude protein, 14 grams of fats, 922-993K calories of energy, and traces (often under 1 gram) of vitamins and minerals.
  • A pregnant or nursing dog (33lb with 6 puppies) requires 69 – 158 grams of crude protein, 29 – 67 grams of fats, 1,274K calories of energy (more depending on the number of puppies), and traces (often under 1 gram) of vitamins and minerals.

Dog food brands indicated “all-purpose diet” could be tempting. After all, such brands often cost less and don’t require as much work as specialized feeds. However, such a diet may not provide sufficient nutrients for your dog at the specific life stage or level of activity. Most vets and animal nutritionists recommend feeding your dog according to its needs. 

The Diet Should be Rich in Protein but not Necessarily Meat

One of the emerging controversial issues concerning dogs’ nutrition is protein content and sources. Arguments arise especially concerning giving dogs vegetarian and vegan foods – often deemed to have lower protein content.

Dogs are omnivorous, and the fact is that they require nutrients, not specific ingredients. The diet should be rich in digestible proteins which can adequately supply all the essential amino acids. Experts put the minimum protein content in dog food at 25%. However, since animal-based feeds generally have higher proportions of digestible protein than plant-based feeds, they are deemed better sources. On the contrary, studies and testimonials confirm that alternative protein sources are just as good, if not better.

Other Nutrients (Carbs, Vitamins, and Minerals) are also Crucial

Fats and carbs are crucial for energy supply and healthy skin and fur. Fatty acids like Linoleic Acid, Omega-6, and Omega-3 are essential for carrying nutrients and preventing ailments. Carbs (sugars and starches) supply energy, necessary for metabolic functions and play. Vitamins including vitamin A, D, E, K, and B complex are critical for organ functioning, bone formation, and building immunity. Lastly, minerals like calcium and phosphorus are crucial for bone development and other neural functions. As you can see, providing wholesome nutrition for your dog is critical.

What About Supplements?

A dietary supplement is a manufactured product intended to boost the provision of certain nutrients. The guideline concerning supplements is simple: unless the vet prescribes, avoid giving your dog any.

Selecting Appropriate Dog Food

Understanding your dog’s nutritional requirements is excellent. But selecting appropriate dog food could be a whole new challenge. Feeding your dog requires knowledge of their nutrition needs and precision in quantities. This is often difficult to achieve on a home-based diet. Therefore, many experts do not recommend home-based diets.

 Also, desist from giving your dog table scraps and other human foods. Instead, stick to specialized pet food and treats. 

When shopping for appropriate dog food, focus on high-quality brands using high-quality proteins such as Timberwolf Organics. Also, remember to look for the AAFCO standards notification. Keep the calorie content low (unless your pooch is an overly active worker or sports dog) because obesity in dogs is an emerging health issue.

Finally, Feed Your Dog on a Schedule

This guideline would be incomplete without the information on when and how to feed your dog.

 Excellent eating habits are just as important as a balanced diet. Feed your dog using a consistent and regular schedule. Like the quantity and quality of feed, the feeding schedule also varies with life stage and other factors like activity levels, breed, whether your dog is a mum or expectant, and others. Good eating habits are essential for the health and wellness of your dog. 

Reach out to a vet or a respected animal nutritionist and seek help on your dog’s nutrition. Your dog will thank you for it.


Photo by Karolina Grabowska

Let’s Talk About Costs When Adopting a Dog

Adopting is a great way to rescue dogs and help animal shelters, as we’ve discussed in our article ‘Wondering if You Should Foster a Dog?’  While the post is centered on fostering, adopting is quite similar in a way. You still get to care for a dog except it’s permanent. Still, before diving into adoption, potential dog owners need to be prepared for the expenses that come with it. There’s
much to consider and pay for, such as their food and care supplies and adoption fees.

Being aware of these is important so you can rest assured that you’ll be able to
properly care for your soon-to-be dog. That said, below are a few costs to keep in

Adoption fees
Animal shelters and organizations typically collect adoption fees. Sound Dollar outlines how adoption fees from shelters and organizations are usually at $100 to $500. This is to support the other needs of the organization, like dog food and
supplies. It also varies per group, but adoption fees cover the initial vet visit, vaccines, and flea treatments of your future dog. This is so potential adopters are assured they’re bringing home a healthy pet.

Our adoption fees for a dog below 6 months of age is $400. For dogs 6 months to 7 years, it is $350, and dogs 7 years and above have a fee of $300. However, it’s best to check with the animal shelter or group you plan on adopting from beforehand to be able to prepare the exact adoption fee amount.

Pet supplies
Dogs from shelters rarely have their own toys and supplies. In this case, there needs to be a few things waiting for them at home — these include a leash, food bowls, and appropriate-sized toys.
The Animal Health Foundation states that pet supplies can cost an initial average of $130 for dogs. Of course, this will vary depending on the brand or number of items you purchase. For example, buying a toy for a bigger dog would cost more
than one suitable for a smaller dog.
Other supplies to keep in mind are collars, hairbrushes, and poop bags for walks.

Veterinary and medical costs
Despite adoption fees covering initial vet visits and treatment for your dog, there’s still a need to bring them to a vet. The Buffalo News reveals that a vet visit in Los Angeles will cost about $62 while in San Jose, it’s around $67. Take note that this can vary due to factors like your dog’s age and pre-existing medical conditions.
The vet may also recommend vaccinations to keep them healthy, such as those against leptospirosis and distemper. The average vaccination cost in LA is $36 and in San Jose, it is $37. These are only initial costs and they may increase
over time depending on your dog’s needs.

Dog food
Finally, another important thing to prepare is dog food. It’s essential that they have food available as soon as the dog is brought home. A bag of dog food can range anywhere from $50 to $60. However, CNBC reports that pet food inflation rose by 3.7% in February, so this may change as the year progresses.
Like the aforementioned costs, the price of dog food also depends on the type needed by your dog. For example, adopting a puppy may require special dog food with added nutrients to support growth. On the other hand, a big dog breed would go through a bag of food faster than a smaller dog, so you will have to spend more.

Adopting a dog will be an expensive experience. Still, keeping yourself informed of these costs will better prepare you for what is to come.

Article written by Ruth Justine

Exclusively for Pacific Pups

Image credit: Unsplash

Get Your Pet Ready for Summer

Summer brings opportunities for lots of outdoor fun with your pet, along with some challenges.
It’s important to protect animals from dangers, as well as keep them comfortable and
entertained. With a bit of preparation and the following tips from Pacific Pups Rescue, you and
your pet can enjoy the warmer months.

Avoid too much concentrated heat
Closed cars can quickly heat to temperatures that are unbearable for animals. The layer of fur
they have also affects their comfort level. Dogs cannot sweat the way humans do, they cool off
by panting and only the nose and paw pads can perspire. So so don’t leave your pet in a car, even
if you think the temperature outdoors is comfortable. If the pavement feels too hot to touch with
your hand, then it’s too hot for the paw pads of your pet. Try walking them early in the morning,
or in the evening. Some dogs will wear booties to protect their paws, although not all pets will
tolerate this solution.

Stay chill with water and a cool place

Make sure your pet has access to clean water at all times. When you go for a walk, bring along
water and a bowl. Swimming is a great summer exercise for your dog, and a way to stay cool,
too. All dogs don’t enjoy swimming, and if yours does not, don’t try to force it. Before taking
your pet to the beach, a river, or a lake, educate yourself on tides, currents, and algae blooms
that could be dangerous. A backyard kiddie pool full of fresh water is a way for them to cool off
and splash around without needing to swim. If your animal will be out in the sun, apply pet or
human sunscreen to nose, paws, and other vulnerable areas. Make sure there are shady areas
where your pet can retreat to cool off, and as the season begins it’s a great time to wash and
refresh their bedding.

Visit the vet
In many areas, summer is the time when fleas, ticks, and heartworms become more prevalent.
Visit the vet and make sure your animal has been treated with the needed preventatives for your
area as well as any area you plan to travel to with your dog. Although proper care should
prevent heat stroke, learn the symptoms, and at the first sign of trouble head to the vet. Health
insurance for your pet is worth considering, particularly if your animal is still relatively young, you
could save money on vet bills. Finding California pet insurance is very similar to buying health
insurance for humans. Before you select a plan, consider premiums, deductibles, what services
are covered, and be sure to look at customer reviews.

Get your summer supplies
There are so many products for helping your pet stay cool. Although you may decide to buy a
few things, you can also use what you have on hand, like freezing your pet’s favorite treats in
ice cubes for a super cooling snack. You might want to get a cooling collar or vest that can be
dipped in water or refrigerated to help your pet chill. Pet cots that allow air circulation can be
wonderful places for your furry friends to relax. Cooling mats are filled with a pressure-sensitive
gel that absorbs heat from the animal and cools them as they rest on it. Dog life jackets can be
critical if you are taking your pet to a body of water. You might consider a paw-activated water fountain for your pet. Whatever products you’re considering, take time to read customer reviews
first to be sure you’ll be getting useful and reasonably priced items. Here is a great place to find
pet care advice from both vets and customers.

With some planning and preparation, your pet can have a wonderful summer, and you can be
assured that they’ll be safe and healthy. When in doubt, offer water and a shady place to rest,
and remember that any animal with a fur coat will get overheated faster than you do.


Now’s the Time to Launch Your Pet Care Business

Pacific Pups Rescue is finding homes for needy dogs. Learn how you can make a difference.

People love pets, and they always have. That’s why the pet care industry will always thrive,
even in times of economic uncertainty. If you’re an animal lover with an entrepreneurial spirit,
starting a pet care business could be the perfect way to make a living doing what you love.
But as with any industry, you will need to prepare well and strategize your arrival into the market
if you hope to succeed long-term. Below are a few pet care business ideas and some
fundamental tips for getting started!
Pet Boarding
If you start a pet boarding business, notes that you’ll need to handle
an array of tasks. But if you are up for the challenge and have a passion for animals, the variety
of your pet boarding responsibilities can keep your day-to-day interesting.

As an owner or attendant, you will take on the responsibility of housing, feeding, administering
medication, and exercising pets. You will also need to keep each kennel as clean as possible.
Pet Sitting
As the name suggests, pet sitting is essentially the same as babysitting, except you are caring
for pets instead of babies. As a pet sitter, you will be able to choose the animals you look after
as well as whether you keep them in your home or the owner’s. Feeding, playing, and walking
are common tasks to expect. And if you excel at all of your responsibilities, you can quickly build
a loyal client base and a flourishing business that revolves around hanging out with pets!
Dog Walking
Perhaps the simplest type of business on this list, dog walking can serve as the perfect side gig
or introduction into other areas of the pet care industry. It’s all about keeping dogs exercised
and healthy. You would be taking busy people’s pups for regular walks each week, which would
be an excellent opportunity to improve your fitness routine too!
There are several ways to become a dog walker, such as:
● Start a private dog walking business.
● Sign up for a beginner dog walking app.
● Join an existing company.
Dog walking is quite simple, but you must know about state laws and learn how to handle dogs
with various needs and temperaments.
Dog Grooming
If you have a creative streak and love animals, becoming a dog groomer could be right up your alley. Many hairstylists start dog grooming businesses because they find it to be more fun and
fulfilling. You could start a private service out of your home, launch a mobile grooming service,
or rent or purchase commercial space. You can also let your furry clients relax in a cozy pre-
made residential dog kennel in between being dropped off and picked up.
Fundamental Business Tips
Whatever type of pet care business you choose to start, you will need to come at it with a
strategy. For example, it’s never too early to think about how you will receive payment from
customers. These days, you stand a greater chance of making a profit if you accept payments
through your website or app. With a bank account balance API, you can verify in real time
whether your customers have the capital to cover payments, and your customers can avoid
overdraft fees if they don’t have the necessary funds.

You will also need to write a detailed business plan that outlines the steps you will take in the
coming months and years. And if you want to quickly establish a reputation in your community,
Novarize suggests learning marketing basics, such as building a website, designing a logo, and
promoting through social media, email marketing, and paid ads. Look for some free or low-cost
tools to help. For example, you can use an online logo generator to create a memorable and
attractive logo. Select a logo template and then adapt it to your design needs.
There are many possibilities for starting a business if you wish to make a living taking care of
pets. Consider the ideas above, and make sure you are prepared for the business side of
things. You could be hanging out with your new four-legged companions and adding joy and fulfillment to your life in no time!


by Aurora James of

Image via Pexels

What To Do When Your Pet Has Cancer

Hearing that your pet has cancer can hit just as hard as hearing that same sad news from one
of our two-legged friends. Today’s post from Pacific Pups Rescue covers some of the basics of
what to do if your pet has cancer. Keep in mind that no single article on the internet can help
you fully prepare, so it is always best to talk to your veterinarian if you have additional

Understand the Issue
First and foremost, your responsibility lies with yourself and accepting that cancer is a common
occurrence in pets. There was likely nothing you could have done to have prevented your
beloved pet’s illness. Cancer in animals is so common, in fact, that there is an entire
organization – the Veterinary Cancer Society – dedicated to its research and elimination.

Let the Learning Begin
There are many different types of cancer that affect animals. A few are more common than
others, however, with mast cell tumors, melanoma, lymphoma, bone cancer, and
hemangiosarcoma being more prevalent than others. Once you find out which form of cancer
you are dealing with, you will be in a better position to help your animal through the process.

Get to Know the Treatment Options

Treating a pet with cancer is similar to helping a human recover or receive palliative care. Often,
surgery is the first line of attack, and this may be coupled with chemo or radiation therapy. Pet Care Oncology also explains that immunotherapy cryotherapy and radioactive iodine may be
possible treatments in some animals. For animals in the advanced stages of their disease,
comfort treatment may be all you can provide. Full-spectrum CBD oil, anti-inflammatories,
sedatives, and other medicines and homeopathic treatments prescribed by your veterinarian
can all assist with pain management.

Keep the Love Coming
Many people are afraid to show physical affection to their animals for fear that it will exacerbate
pain. Fortunately, as more and more pet owners are becoming aware of the issue, there is a
greater understanding of how, exactly, to interact with a sick pet. Do not forgo quality time
together. Instead, look for activities that enhance your pet’s life without causing them any undue
stress or strain. One example is to go for a short walk in lieu of playing catch. Similarly, you may
purchase them comfort items, such as a pet ramp to go in and out of the house or an orthopedic dog bed to reduce discomfort on aching bones and joints.

Create a Healthier Environment
Another great thing you can do for your pet is maintain the yard and remove allergens from the
home. You might also want to add a fence (if you don’t already have one) to keep your dog in
your yard – and prevent other animals from bothering them. This gives them somewhere to play
and feel safe. This also has an added benefit for the owner since certain upgrades to your home
can even raise your home’s value.

Watch Their Diet
Just like humans, discomfort during cancer or its related treatment may be heightened by a poor
diet. While it may be necessary to make some adjustments so that your animal’s weight stays in
check, most experts believe that quickly and unexpectedly switching foods – even if it is a
healthier option – may cause more harm than good. Changing your animal’s; food without a
transitional period can lead to gastrointestinal disturbances, which are already painfully common
during cancer treatment.
Your pet is a part of your family. And just because they are sick does not mean that you cannot
continue to give them all the love you have in your heart. But it’s a good idea to get to know the
type of cancer they have, provide care when they need it, and avoid the temptation to blame
yourself. Remember, there is no replacing man’s best friend. One final piece of advice is to seek
out a pet loss support group nearby so that you will have a network in place to help you through
the hardest part of your pet’s diagnosis, particularly if it is incurable.

by Aurora James of

Image via Pexels

How To Be An Advocate For Animals In Need

If you’re a Southern California animal lover, it can be difficult to see animals who are
neglected, abandoned, or in distress. Fortunately, there are numerous ways ways you can
help. The following guide offers some suggestions to consider.
Shelters and animal welfare agencies are overbooked and understaffed. You can help
by offering your time your time in the following ways:
● Cleaning kennels, bathing animals, and providing physical, emotional, and
mental stimulation.
● Participating in animal adoption fairs fairs.
● Helping with publicity efforts, like taking pictures of animals up for adoption and
posting them online.
● SPCA LA has numerous opportunities to help — you can find them here
Animal rescues are always in need of funds, not only to feed and shelter animals but to
provide medical care and keep their facilities operational.
● Make cash donations.
● Sponsor an animal’s medical care care or food bill.
● Host a fundraiser and donate the proceeds.
● Great Nonprofit has a vetted list list of non-profit animal welfare agencies in need of
monetary support.
Start Your Own Non-Profit
While it’s not the easiest path toward helping neglected animals, starting a nonprofit can
have a big impact once established. Here are a few start-up priorities:
● Select a name and identify a board of directors.
● File articles of incorporation.
● Obtain tax ID numbers.
● Register as a charity, open a bank account, and create business cards.

Be An Advocate

One of the most important things you can do to support neglected and homeless
animals is to be a vocal advocate.
● Use your social media accounts to promote animal welfare and agencies that
help them.
● Repost information on local shelter and rescue needs.
● Encourage friends and family to adopt or foster rather than buy pets.
● Report animal abuse and neglect to the proper authorities.
Animals are innocents who have no way to protect themselves, and they count on
humans to be kind, caring, and compassionate. Your work on their behalf can be a
wonderful way to give back to your community, bond with friends and family, and make
an important and measurable difference.

One of the most important things you can do to support neglected and homeless
animals is to be a vocal advocate.
● Use your social media accounts to promote animal welfare and agencies that
help them.
● Repost information on local shelter and rescue needs.
● Encourage friends and family to adopt or foster rather than buy pets.
● Report animal abuse and neglect to the proper authorities.
Animals are innocents who have no way to protect themselves, and they count on
humans to be kind, caring, and compassionate. Your work on their behalf can be a
wonderful way to give back to your community, bond with friends and family, and make
an important and measurable difference.
Photo by Pixabay

by Aurora James of

Wondering if You Should Foster a Dog? Yes – And Here’s How!

Note: This is an abbreviated version of an article originally published on K9 of Mine, re-published here with permission. You can read the original piece “How to Become a Dog Foster: Providing a Temporary Home for Canines in Need!” at K9 of Mine.

Fostering a dog is a great way to help out shelter dogs in need – plus it allows you to spend time with a great four-footer without the full lifetime commitment of adopting a pet. 

Every dog deserves a place where they can feel loved and cared for while waiting for their forever home!

Becoming a foster dog parent is incredibly rewarding, but there are a few things into consideration before committing to taking in a shelter pup in need. Don’t worry – we’ll explain everything you need to know!

How Do Fosters Help Shelter Dogs? 

Becoming a dog foster is one of the most impactful things you can do for a local shelter. Foster homes are in need for a variety of reasons including: 

1. Shelter space is tight, and fosters can free up room

Fostering a dog allows a dog to move into your home, freeing up room at rescue organizations — including both “kill” and “no-kill” shelters — so that your local shelter or rescue can take in more dogs who need help. Without caring foster homes, many shelters would be unable to take in new animals. This can result in neglectful owners dumping dogs on highways, or worse.

2. Foster can provide hospice care

For poor pups on their last leg, a dog foster can provide a warm, loving, caring environment for the dog to spend his final days. No dog deserves to leave this world in a stressful, loud shelter environment.

3. Fosters provide a safe space for puppies (until they’re old enough to be adopted)

Foster homes allow puppies to grow up in a relaxing environment, away from the noise and chaos of shelter life. Puppies are like little sponges, and spending their first months on earth in a stressful shelter environment can have a significant and undesirable impact on their disposition as adult dogs. 

A shelter provides minimal chances for exposure and puppy socialization with the larger world, which can result in a fearful, nervous adult dog. 

Fostering a litter of puppies can mean setting up a whole group of dogs for success! 

4. Fosters allow shy dogs to blossom

Shy and timid dogs desperately require a quiet, peaceful environment to help blossom and come out of their shells. Dog fosters allow sensitive canines to get away from the loud kennel environment and provide these pooches with the patience and care needed to feel safe and show their true colors. 

Foster parents of shy dogs will want to focus on building the dog’s confidence through various exercises and gentle training activities to help a nervous dog feel more at-ease and sure of themselves.

5. Fosters provide extra care to sick dogs while they recover

Dogs recovering from sickness or injury are often placed in a foster home to help the dog heal and recover more quickly while also keeping the shelter hygienic and limit the risk of exposure to other dogs. 

6. Fosters can collect more information about a dog’s behavior and demeanor in a home setting

Foster homes offer an excellent opportunity for shelters to better understand a dog’s behavior and general habits. How does a dog handle cats, other dogs, or kiddos? Is the dog potty trained? Does he like toys? Does he prefer to be left alone or is he a huge cuddle bug?

Collecting this information for the shelter will allow the organization to share this info with would-be adopters and help a dog get matched with his perfect home. 

7. Fosters provide a haven if shelters become temporarily unable to care for animals

If a shelter is affected by a natural disaster, canine foster parents can help keep dogs safe temporarily while the shelter is repaired and made habitable. 

Ultimately, foster homes give dogs a better place to live. Dogs in foster homes receive much more individualized attention and care than they might otherwise receive in a crowded shelter.

Many dogs behave much better in a quiet foster home than they do in a shelter, thereby increasing the chances that they’ll find a forever family. 

Fostering a Dog: The Good and the Bad 

Fostering a dog is like any other experience, with advantages and disadvantages. Let’s explore some of the key pros and cons.

Pros of Fostering:

  • You get to spend time with a dog. The best part of fostering is that you get to spend time with a new furry friend! You will be helping the dog grow into their best self, which can be very fulfilling.
  • You’ll be supporting your local animal shelter. One of the greatest advantages in fostering a dog is the help it will provide in supporting your local shelter. Shelters and rescue groups rely on the generosity of animal fosters in order to help dogs in need and free up space. This is a great way to support your local community!
  • You’ll help a dog find their forever home. Fostering can feel bittersweet at times, but there’s nothing more rewarding than handing off your foster dog to his forever family, knowing you made a pivotal impact on a pup who needed help.
  • Foster dogs can keep your own dog company. Foster dogs are an awesome way to give your own pup some company (if you have a pet at home). In some cases, having another dog in the home can be a game-changer for dogs suffering from separation anxiety (although it won’t be a fix for all dogs). Foster dogs are also a great option for anyone who is not quite ready for the lifetime commitment of a pet, but wants to give dog ownership a trial run.

Cons of Fostering:

  • Saying goodbye can be tough. When it’s time for a dog to move on to their forever home, saying goodbye can be emotionally difficult. While this can feel sad, you can be happy knowing it was YOU who helped a dog in need find a wonderful home. 
  • You’re financially responsible for your foster. It’s your financial responsibility to take care of your furry foster friend. Foster dogs require food, basic medical care, as well as a comfy bed and toys. In some cases, you may need additional gear like a crate or additional equipment depending on the dog’s needs. Shelters usually help out with basic care, but you’ll need to invest at least some cash in your foster dog’s proper care. Caring for a dog also requires a significant time commitment, so make sure you have time in your schedule to pay proper attention to your foster pup.
  • Foster dogs aren’t always easy to care for. Shelters and rescue groups do their best to provide fosters with information regarding a dog’s background, but in many cases shelter dogs come with an unknown history. Some have challenging issues, such as living formerly as a yard-only dog, or other past trauma that can make life difficult for them. Be ready to show kindness and compassion towards your canine guest, and help them adjust to their new life while preparing for a better future.

What Does a Dog Foster Do?

Dog fosters are wonderful people who make a huge difference in the lives of dogs. Dog fosters play a big part in giving shelter dogs a good life, while also making room in shelters so more dogs can be saved from being put down.

But what – on a day-to-day basis – does a dog foster parent do?

In addition to basic caretaking responsibilities, dog fosters will be responsible for the following:

Basic training and manners. Ideally, you’ll spend some time teaching your foster dog basic manners and obedience training for in-the-home. This isn’t required, but it’s highly recommended and part of what’s expected of a responsible foster. This may involve potty training, basic commands like sit and stay, etc. Some shelters will even cover the cost of classes for you to learn about dog training while helping your new buddy. Just make sure you’re always using humane, compassionate, positive-reinforcement based training strategies that won’t frighten your visiting pooch.

Collecting dog data for the shelter. Foster homes give shelters the opportunity to learn more about a dog’s behavior in a home setting. Be ready to provide detailed information about your foster pup’s personality, preferences, and behavior. A foster parent’s data collection will help ensure that the dog gets matched with a good family fit.

Fosters help find forever homes. The most important job of a pet foster parent is to help their foster find their forever family! This often will involve taking the dog to shelter-organized adoption events and speaking with potential adopters to determine if they’re a good fit for your pooch. There’s a full guide on how to get your foster dog adopted at K9 of Mine with more tips on promoting your pup!

How Can I Become a Dog Foster? 

The basic path required to becoming a dog foster can vary depending on the specific shelter or rescue you are working with. However,  some of the most common requirements include:

  • Fill out paperwork about your living situation. Shelters usually want to get a better understanding of your experience with dogs, your living space (do you have roommates? Do you have a fenced-in backyard?) and potentially even your financial status.
  • Complete a basic dog-care course. Many shelters have a short, simple online course or video you’ll be asked to watch to ensure you understand how to properly care for your foster dog.
  • Attend an orientation. Most shelters will have some kind of orientation to get you up to speed on the rules and regulations around the organization’s foster program.

Becoming a dog foster is a great way to help out your local animal shelter while getting to spend time with some amazing doggos! Help deserving dogs find their forever homes while learning about a variety of different dogs.

We hope this foster guide has been helpful – reach out to your local animal rescue or shelter today and ask about becoming a foster today!