Home Lifestyle & Travel Pets Editor’s Choice ... WOOF

Editor’s Choice … WOOF

Whether your dog’s a rough-and-ready hound dog or a spoilt bitch, our ed’s all puppy-love this August.

Designed for posh dogs

Design is going to the dogs. Literally, in the case of Petite French & Co, a company devoted to giving dogs the very best in lifestyle products. As Gill Taylor, founder of the online shopping company, says, trending globally is the humanisation of dogs. They are not just pets, they’re part of the family. They are friends and companions and style-conscious consumers are looking for high-end accessories for them … bowls, beds and blankets. Petite French is aimed at those who want the very best for their dogs.

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The millennials, empty nesters and city dwellers who take their dogs everywhere with them. And we’re not talking just for walks. They take them to the beach, restaurants and coffee shops and they want their dogs to look cool and stylish in keeping with their lifestyle. On our pups wish list is this rubber, on-the-go collapsible bowl (R149) and, for our next seaside holiday, a sleek, secure life jacket with velcro straps, sturdy buckles and buoyancy foam. To ensure your pooch isn’t embarrassed by shabby accessories on the next outing, pop over to petitefrench.com … and turn to our Spoil page, where you’ll find a dozzie of a giveaway.

Walkies! Which really does need to be said firmly in Barbara Woodhouse style! Anyhoo … get your steps in alongside your hounds. These were obvious top of the must-have list, since our editor’s dog’s name is … we kid you not … Alfie. So she’d have been barking mad not to buy the Alfie Pet Lead (R899) and the Alfie Pet Collar (R699) from Country Road at Woolworths.

Keep a big bowl of fresh water available at all times … This Alfie Bowl in soft pink will look pretty on the verandah. R499 from Country Road at woolworths.co.za

Here’s a feel-good treat. A simple, easy-to-make biscuit recipe for you to bake for your dogs. There’s a lovely back-story too. The recipe was created by Megan Weitzman, daughter of Afrivet’s Company Controller; she made these to sell to raise funds for a trip to Spain, where she participated in the Dance World Cup Finals. How great is that!

To make these Afrivet Dog Treats, you’ll need 2,5 cups of whole wheat flour, 2 large eggs, 1/2 cup steamed sweet potato or pumpkin, 50ml unsalted butter, 50ml coconut oil, 2 tbsp peanut butter (optional), half a tsp ground cinnamon (optional), 1 tsp water – or a little more if needed. To make, pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Mix all the ingredients together, roll out and cut to preferred shape. Place on a baking tray and bake at 180°C for 45min, then turn down the oven to 100°C and leave them to dry out for a further one hour. Cool on a cooling tray and place in an airtight container.
Details: afrivet.co.za

Vet ready

A visit to the vet isn’t always a walk in the park. Plenty of dogs get anxious, which stresses us, too. Marltons pet care brand shared some useful stress-free-vet-visit tips…

Get extra touchy-feely When your pet is being examined by a vet, they’re going to get touched all over. From under their feet to the inside of their ears, to having to open wide and even down to the tip of their tails, no fur will be left unturned. In the days leading up to the vet visit, get a little extra affectionate with your pet. Tickle their tummies and gently stroke and touch some of the places that may be unexpected for them. You can even give them some treats while doing this – and take some along for the visit. This will ease their anxiety when they’re being touched during their checkup.

Tire them out beforehand Take your dog on a brisk walk before your visit so that they aren’t full of pent up energy. They’ll handle the drive and the examination a bit better if they’re feeling tired.

Make sure they travel in style It’s important to remember that the vet visit actually begins from the moment you put your pet in the car. If they’re not used to pet carriers then let them play inside one for a bit in the days leading up to the vet visit so that they get used to it. Speak to them reassuringly throughout the journey and avoid playing loud music, driving too fast or hooting too much. A calm journey sets the scene for a calm vet visit.

Plan ahead when it comes to treats and toys Make sure your pet hasn’t had a big meal right before the vet visit. One method to provide a stress-free visit is to give your pet treats during the exam – this works especially well if they’re a little bit hungry. If your pet has a favourite blanket or toy, bring that along as well to reduce their anxiety.

Calmness is contagious and timing is everything You know how your pet knows exactly when you need a cuddle or when you want to play? Well they also know when you’re feeling stressed. And this stress can make them feel very anxious. Try to project a calm demeanour before the vet visit. Avoid excess reassurances, or behaving as if something unusual is going to happen because fur kids are very perceptive. Also, make sure that you’re on time for your appointment, and if you can’t make an appointment make sure you can chill with them outside in a comfortable space instead of a waiting room full of anxious animals.

Details: marltons.co.za

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