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Maricopa County Sheriff Deputies happened across a horrific scene in Laveen, Arizona.  They had been investigating a property after complaints from neighbors came in.  Neighbors complained of hundreds of vehicles and raucous noise on the weekends.

They found evidence of what could be an animal fighting arena.  An alleged arena, leashes hanging from trees, and beer cans were strewn about.  That’s not all.  A total hovering around 100 animals were found, including an estimated 40 dogs. Many breeds of animals were present including pigs and roosters. Dogs and horses were living in small, poor living spaces – gated areas.  No food or water was seen anywhere.  Officers reported that the animals were matted and mangy.  One dog was dead when officers arrived on the scene and two horses collapses when officers tried to move them.

dog fight arizona

All types of dogs were found, not just large breeds like pit bulls.  Authorities are speculating whether or not the little dogs were used for a training tool or bait as Deputy Joaquin Enriquez mentioned “”Little dogs, Cocker Spaniels, Poodles, chained up with heavy chains. That makes you wonder what they’re being used for. Are they a training tool for the bigger dogs that are here?”

The owner has been arrested but many questions remain.  The owner claims that he rescued the dogs from local river beds but Authorities are left wondering. Were the dogs and horses being boarded? Were the dogs taken unlawfully from neighboring homes and cities?  There seems to be in influx of missing family pets in the area in recent times.  Residents are fearful and left wondering if their missing pet ended up as victims in this heart wrenching situation.

Authorities are looking for answers and hope you can help them.  If you have a missing animal or have any information to help with the investigation, call the MCSO animal cruelty hotline at 602-876-1681 or send an email to animal_cruelty@mcso.maricopa.gov .

 

When Does Rattlesnake Season End In Arizona?

Rattlesnake Season in Arizona

Rattlesnake season is in full swing here in Scottsdale.  As you are out and about with your dog, you might be wondering “When is rattlesnake season over?” or more importantly “What should I do if my dog is bit?” Well, before you hit the trails or heck, the back yard for that matter, you need to keep reading.  This information could save your dog’s life.

First things first!  When is rattlesnake season? Is there an official season?

Rattlesnake season begins in Arizona around April, when things begin to heat up and it continues well into October.  However, that’s not to say you won’t see a rattlesnake out and about during the winter months. Rattlesnakes will seek a cool refuge during times of intense heat in the summer months but that don’t mean you and your dog won’t encounter them along the way! They like to keep cool just like the rest of us so when heat is intense, that’s when the rattlesnakes will find their way onto our porches or in our garages.  Night time may be the most risky time for you and your dog due to low visibility as well as their ability to camouflage.

How can I help my dog if he is bit?

First, be sure to get your dog the rattle snake vaccination!  This vaccination serves to reduce the anti-venom he would need by the time he reaches the emergency hospital.  So, basically the vaccine reduces the reaction to the rattlesnake venom thereby allowing you more time for action.  Now that doesn’t mean to rest on your laurels.  If you dog is bit, it’s always serious business.  The only thing you can and MUST do is to get your dog straight to the nearest veterinary clinic.  By reducing the amount of anti-venom your dog will need will save you money as anti-venom is quite pricey. The vaccine itself will most likely cost you about $25-30 depending on the area in which you live.

How can I help my dog avoid snakes altogether?

Unfortunately, there’s no way to avoid snakes.  Your dog will be outdoors and let’s face it, dogs have amazing senses and use them to scout out the world in which they live.  They are curious little critters and that curiosity mixed with a rattler is downright dangerous. If your dog sticks his nose in the wrong bush, up the wrong tree or even if he’s minding his own business in the back yard, he may happen upon a rattler.  You can avoid or curb your dog’s curiosity to the rattle snake by signing him up for Rattlesnake Avoidance Training.  In this training, your dog will be trained to avoid rattle snakes. This means he will learn to avoid the scents, smells and sounds of the rattle snake. He will be exposed to muzzled snakes as well as a low level shock collar when he goes near the snake.  This idea of the shock collar may turn you off however, think of the alternative.  As the pet parent, you are in the driver’s seat here.  You make the choices based on your pet’s lifestyle and yours as well.

What are the signs of a rattle snake bite?  

  • Swelling
  • Panting and drooling
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Puncture wounds
  • Tremors or seizures
  • Weakness or collapse

 

More tips:
  • Leash your dog when you walk him.  This is good practice anyway.
  • Steer clear of brush and rocks where snakes could be lurking.
  • Always, always know the location of the nearest emergency animal hospital when you are out and about.  This holds especially true if you are camping or traveling outside your local city limits.
  • Slowly back away from any snake.  Don’t wait the rattle because you won’t be able to move quick enough once he decides he’s going to bite.
  • Keep your back yard, porches and patios well lit!
  • Keep your garage door closed when not in use.

In conclusion, avoiding the rattlesnake is the best scenario but that’s always hard to do in Arizona.  Be prepared.  Be cautious and always be on the lookout especially with your pups in tow.  Again, should your dog be bit or you even think he may have been bit, seek immediate medical attention.  A bite is rarely a death sentence but prompt medical treatment may mean a world of difference – life or death.  

Play Video Games With & Without Your Pets (Really!)

dog videoWe already know you’re passionate about your fur babies, but what about gaming? Being a gamer isn’t just a hobby; it’s a lifestyle. We have our own chairs, controllers and sound systems, and we want others to play with us, including our pets. If you’re a pet parent who’s also a serious gamer, then we have some good news for you—game developers have created some new games and technology that enable us to play alongside our furry friends. Read more about it:

Clever Pet

If you were left at home all by yourself, without any games, TV or even a magazine, you would start chewing on the furniture too. This is why inventors Leo Trottier, Dan Knudsen and Emily Bluvas created Clever Pet. This is an interactive electronic game for your dog to play while you are gone. It is a little like “Simon” (remember that?) for humans, but the successful pet gets a treat. The founding team, all of which are PhD-level neuro and cognitive scientists, created a Kickstarter campaign for the pet toy, and according to the campaign page, it was fully funded in 33 days. Hopefully, this will be the first step to teaching your dog to play as Luigi in Mario Bros.

iPad Games for Cats

Friskies, the cat food people, have created a video game for cats (called, unironically, “Games for Cats“) to play on your iPad. Cats are natural first-person-shooter gamers. All of the Friskies games have that central theme. The owner lays the iPad, with the game loaded, on the floor and something starts moving—in one game it’s a fish and another has Friskies treats. They move around and the kitty taps them just like you do in “Call of Duty.” When the cat hits the target, the treat splits into two, giving the pet more things to attack. Since every cat owner loves to drive their kitty crazy in a good way, this is insanity-inducing video game will be fun for kitty and you.

Xbox Kinect for Dog Owners

One of the big things that the Xbox One has going for it is the newly redesigned Kinect accessory. This system is a body and voice recognition device that does away with the need for a joystick, so you’re not tied to a console. It also lets your dog get into the game; you can create a virtual pet with “Fantastic Pets,” and then use the standing, hands-free position to toss a ball for your virtual pet and for your IRL pet. This is good exercise for all three of you. Check out some “Fantastic Pets” gameplay on YouTube.

Petcube

Sadly, we do need to work. Even when we are out of the house, we can play games with our pets at home. The Petcube is a Wi-Fi enabled camera, speaker and games system that can be remotely accessed via your smartphone. You can communicate with your pet and even use a laser pointer to play chasing games with your best friend. You can also post pictures and videos to your social media pages—because after all, both gamers and proud pet parents love to brag, don’t we?

5 Apps Every Dog Owner Should Have

Apps are a part of everyday life.  We use apps to find restaurants.  We use apps to entertain ourselves.  Apps are a means by which we can connect with others.  But did you know that you can use apps to help you as a pet owner?  Apps are an inexpensive and useful tool that pet owners can utilize in order to keep their pet(s) safe, locate the nearest dog park, and generally assist in keeping pet owners more organized and informed.

Where Should You Walk Your Dog?

For example, are you having a hard time finding the perfect route to take your dog on a walk?  Do you want to change things up by trying out a new walking route?  As a pet sitter, I find myself in new and unfamiliar neighborhoods all the time and trying to find the perfect route to walk is not always an easy task to manage, not to mention the risk of getting lost in a new neighborhood.  MapMyDogwalk has made the task of finding the perfect route to walk a breeze and I don’t ever have to worry about trying to memorize the path I took.

MapMyDogwalk allows you to keep a log of your walks so that you can view different routes that you have taken.  For those of you that are more fitness minded, you can track calories burned through MapMyDogwalk.  If you are feeling adventurous, you can map a different route to walk using GPS.  The MapMyDogwalk app is a lifesaver when it comes to walking dogs in neighborhoods that I am unfamiliar with!

Below are several images depicting what the MapMyDogwalk app looks like in action.  As you can see, the layout is simple and straightforward.

MapMyDogwalk MapMyDogwalk 2

Figure Out What Your Dog Is Saying!

Looking for an app that you can use with your dog and have some fun?  Try Dog Translator!  This entertaining app will record your dog’s bark, grunts and all other sounds he/she might make and gives you a translation.  Below you can see what Dog Translator looks like in action.

Dog Translator

Take Better Pics of Your Dog!

Are you having difficulties taking the perfect picture of your adorable pet?  Dog Boogie is an app that will actually draw your dog’s attention and assist in making them look at the camera.  Dog Boogie makes sounds that will draw the attention of your pooch so that you can snap the perfect photograph!  Dog Boogie also has fun filters and is capable of linking with your social networking sites as you can see below.

Dog Boogie

 

Get Your Dog’s Attention While Taking A Picture!

Sadly, not all of us can whistle and whistling can come in handy when calling your dog or trying to get his/her attention.  Not a problem!  Dog Whistler is an app that will whistle for you!  You can even adjust the sound pattern and frequency of the whistle.  Pretty neat, huh?

Dog Whistler

Traveling With Your Dog

We know that sometimes you just want to take your dog with you. Like when you want to go rent a cabin in the roods? Or maybe you are driving across country to relocate and taking your dog with you? It is tough to find out where Fido is welcomed. Bring Fido will break it all down for you will find a variety of locations that are dog friendly ranging from hotels to beaches and restaurants to parks.  This is a handy app to have when you are traveling with your pet!

BringFido

 

So just like our two legged kids seem to take over our phones with games and apps, our dog’s can have a few as well! Tell me which apps you currently use or which ones you will download for your dog!

 

 

 

5 Ways to Create an Indoor Cat Haven

cat sitter in scottsdaleApproximately 50 percent of U.S. cats now live indoors, says the New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The organization strongly encourages all cats move indoors to prevent disease and enjoy an enriching life. It’s easy to assume all cats need to be outdoors to satisfy their natural instincts like hunting and jumping, but it’s entirely possible to create a fulfilling life for your cat right inside your home. Here’s a few ways to create a safe feline sanctuary for your cat from privacy to playtime.

Choose the Right Scents

Creating ambience with candles, incense and oil lamps may sooth your senses, but probably isn’t doing much for your cat’s. An open flame can harm your cat or accidentally get knocked over during play or when brushing past it. Plus, some scents can be aggravating to cats, and oils like liquid potpourri can prove fatal if ingested.

Instead of these dangerous options, invest in special cat grass like a kitty garden that promotes good feline digestion when nibbled. The grass helps soothe your cat’s tummy, and the scent creates a clean and fresh smell in your home.

Use Safe Window Treatments

Home owners might be tempted to go with mini-blinds to keep their cats from sharpening their claws on long drapes, but cats are prone to chewing on plastic when bored or to relieve anxiety. The result is damage to the soft tissue of their gums and potential harm to their GI tract, according to Vet Street.

Consider sleek, minimal roller blinds that can easily be raised or lowered instead. Select a style that doubles as a black-out shade for cats who enjoy roaming at night and exploring in the dark. Roller blinds also can be rolled all the way up so your cat can gaze outside the window.

Add Places to Jump

Cats are natural climbers and love jumping and exploring up high. Install shelving and leave it empty for cats to jump from different levels. If you don’t want to install additional shelving, use what you already have in place. Clear out a top shelf in your linen closet, place one of your cat’s favorite toys on it and encourage your cat to jump up to grab the toy or curl up for a long nap.

Respect Its Litter Box

Placing a litter box in a damp basement next to noisy appliances only leads to issues. It’s likely your cat will not use the litter box and take out its aggression on you. Just like humans, cats want a respectable place to use the bathroom in peace. Create a private space that’s out of the way of foot traffic, but also accessible enough for the cat to reach with ease.

Create an Enriching Environment

Open floor plans with wide open spaces and clean lines aren’t very appealing to cats. They want an enriching environment with a variety of objects to explore. Felines need areas to jump, run and hide in. Give your cats plenty of cardboard boxes, shopping bags and toys they can throw themselves. To add to your cat’s fun, set-up a bird feeder just outside its favorite window for it to keep an eye on during the day. It will love the activity and keep watch over its new sanctuary.

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