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How to Tell if Your Dog has Allergies and What to Do About Them

How to Tell if Your Dog has Allergies and What to Do About Them

If you think your dog has allergies, here’s how to tell for sure and what to do about it

If you suffer from allergies, whether on a daily basis or seasonally, or perhaps, only when you come in contact with certain substances, you know that having an allergic reaction is no walk in the park. If your dog has allergies, it can be a pretty serious issue for him too, so it’s important to stay on top of things if you suspect your pooch might be allergic.  

Your dog could be allergic to environmental elements like pollen or ragweed, flea bites, or he can also have reactions to certain ingredients in his dog food. Your first step to fixing the problem is to learn how to tell if your pup might have allergies, and then it’s time to play detective and narrow down what might be the cause of your dog’s symptoms.  

 

Signs and Symptoms of Dog Allergies

There are a few red flags to keep an eye out for when it comes to dog allergies; severe itching, bald patches, biting at certain areas, and in some cases, vomiting or diarrhea can all signal a potential allergic reaction. You should also pay attention to your dog’s skin, as certain allergic reactions can show themselves through a variety of skin disorders. If your pup is suffering from certain environmental allergies, he might even present with symptoms on his paws. These include red spots between his toes or discolored fur on his paws from frequent licking at sensitive spots that flare up when his paws come in contact with the grass or other substances.

Is It Really Allergies?

If your pup is vomiting or having frequent diarrhea every time he eats, but not showing other symptoms of allergies, it could be that your pooch is eating too fast, and trying a slow feed bowl or elevated feeder can offer an easy solution. On the other hand, the real culprit could be a food intolerance. Food allergies and food intolerances are two different situations; allergies stem from an immune response, while intolerance is due to a digestive issue. The only way you can know for absolute certainty if your dog has allergies is to consult with your vet so she can do the necessary examinations and testing.

golden retriever puppies eating with food allergies 

What To Do If Your Dog Has a Food Allergy

If your vet determines that your pup does indeed have a food allergy, she will likely want you to keep a log of what your pup is eating, including any medications that your pup is taking. Putting your pup on a feeding schedule can help you keep track of exactly what and when your dog eats so that you can give your veterinarian the full picture. Through testing and a process of eliminating and isolating certain foods,  you and your vet can work together to narrow down what exactly your pup might be having an allergic reaction to in his food. 

There are so many different ingredients in both wet and dry dog foods (plus, so many different varieties of foods) that it can take some time to zero in on the offending substances. Your pup could be allergic to chicken or other proteins, corn, soy, wheat, or some of the additives and preservatives that are found in a lot of foods on the market. 

Your vet will recommend a new diet for your pup to follow, and you should also eliminate all table scraps, and carefully consider any treats and chew bones that your pup gets. It will take some time for your dog’s allergies to improve once he shifts to his new diet, but you should see a gradual decrease in his symptoms. If your pup’s reactions do not get better, then it is time to revisit the situation with your vet and consider if your pooch could actually be battling seasonal allergies.

How Should You Switch To a New Dog Food?

When switching your dog to a new food, make sure to do it gradually. Incorporate some of the new food into your dog’s dish with his old food. For example, if your pup eats a half a cup of food, serve him his old food minus a tablespoon, and replace that tablespoon with some of his new food. Over the next few days, increase the amount of new food and decrease the serving of the old food, until you have completely replaced your pal’s food with his new diet. 

white dog itching

What To Do If Your Dog Has Seasonal Allergies

If seasonal allergies are to blame for your pooch’s symptoms, then the treatment will depend on the allergen. Your vet will most likely identify the allergen through an intradermal skin test, which is when small amounts of test allergens are injected beneath your pup’s skin to see which, if any, cause a reaction. Types of reactions your vet will look for include redness and swelling at the injection sites, and she will also be able to tell the severity of your dog’s allergies based on these reactions.  

Once your vet has identified what it is your dog is allergic to, she can put together a specialized plan to help treat your pup’s allergies. This plan can include a number of different treatments, including:

  • Allergy shots

Immunotherapy has shown to have a positive effect on 60-80% of dogs with allergies. It is a special serum that your vet creates based on your pup’s skin test results in order to help reduce your dog’s reactions to particular allergens.

 

Fish oil and other fatty acid supplements can be an asset when it comes to fighting allergic reactions because they can help strengthen your pup’s skin barrier and decrease inflammation. Plus, Omega-3s have the added bonus of helping improve other issues like joint and heart problems.

 

  • Antihistamines

If you have allergies, you might take Benadryl or another over-the-counter-medication to help find some relief from your symptoms. Well, dogs can also be given these antihistamines as well, but it is imperative to first consult with your vet for the right dosage. Also, you might have to try several different medications before you find the one that works the best for your pooch. 

 

  • Steroids

If your dog has a severe reaction to an allergen and is very uncomfortable, then your vet might prescribe a steroid medication or shot. However, if your pup ends up on steroids long-term, have your vet do regular blood and urine tests as frequent steroid use can increase the risk of certain conditions like kidney disease and high blood pressure. 

 

  • Environmental Changes

Obviously you don’t want your dog to miss out on fun activities during certain seasons, or when you’re spending time outside. However, sometimes, making a lifestyle change is the best way to give your pup relief from his allergies. This doesn’t mean your pup can’t go outside, it just means you have to make some changes.

For example, if your pup is irritated by grass, you could get him some doggy shoes or boots, or make sure to give your pal a wipe down and wash his feet after spending time outside. If your dog has a significant reaction to environmental factors, then it is also helpful to ensure you have a regular bathing routine in place.

 

  • Antibiotics

Antibiotics won’t necessarily help with the actual allergies, but if your dog’s response to his symptoms, such as frequent licking and biting, has caused a skin infection, then antibiotics might be prescribed for this secondary issue. If you notice overly red or inflamed areas on your dog’s skin, or crusty, bald patches, then have your vet take a look in case an infection is present. 

 

  • Flea Prevention
Many dogs can have an allergic reaction to flea bites, more precisely to the flea saliva. The easiest way to help protect your pup from fleas is to put him on regular flea-prevention medication. Your vet can recommend what is best for your pup.

 

Can Seasonal Allergies Last All Year?

The word seasonal might trick you into thinking your pup will only have these allergic reactions during certain times of the year. However, depending on the allergens that cause your dog’s allergies, and other factors like your dog’s age, how long he is exposed to the allergens, or other possible underlying health issues, your pooch could suffer from allergies year-round. Always be vigilant when watching your pup for signs of allergic reactions, and consult regularly with your vet, especially if you notice any changes. 

 

There’s no need to fret if you suspect your dog has allergies; it’s actually pretty common. Simply keep your eyes open for potential signs. If you think allergies could be at fault for your pup’s symptoms, set up an appointment with your vet. For more great tips on how to keep a happy, healthy dog, check out the rest of our blogs! We’re here for you all the time, so you can always do what’s best for your pets.
  • Fernando Becattini
Should You Adopt a Puppy or an Older Dog?

Should You Adopt a Puppy or an Older Dog?

Want to adopt a dog? First, decide if a puppy or an older dog is the better choice for you

If you’re ready to bring a canine companion into your life, then the choice to adopt a dog is definitely a noble one. You can not only find a wonderful and faithful friend but also provide a home to a dog in need. Approximately 3.3 million dogs enter US animal shelters each year and are looking for a good home. When you adopt, it’s a win-win situation for you both -- most of the time. In other words, adopting a dog is a huge decision, and it’s important to know exactly what you’re looking for in a pup before you choose the one you will bring home. One of the biggest factors that you need to consider is whether you should adopt a puppy or an older dog.

When it comes time to adopt a dog, choosing a puppy over an older dog, or the other way around isn't necessarily a better choice. It all depends on your lifestyle, personality, and what it is you're looking for in your pup pal. 

The best way to make your decision is to know what exactly adopting a puppy or an older dog entails, and honestly assessing which is the better fit for your life and schedule. In some cases, you might even discover that waiting a little longer before you adopt a dog is your best option. If you decide you want to move forward with the adoption process, sites like Petfinder or the ASPCA are a great way to begin your search.

puppies being adopted

What To Expect When You Adopt a Puppy

The biggest factor to consider if you want to adopt a puppy is the time and attention it takes to raise a new little bundle of fur. During the first few weeks, expect to spend a lot of time at home with your new pup. A new puppy requires constant attention and extra time allotted for things like potty training and crate training. You can expect several sleepless nights, a lot of potty accidents, and a collection of chewed on shoes in the beginning as you work your way toward a more well-behaved, polite pup. Sounds almost like it’s a new baby, doesn’t it? 

A puppy needs ample opportunities for play and exercise throughout the day, as well as the ability to stick to a set schedule. This is especially critical to the success of house training; so if your work schedule doesn’t allow for you to be at home as needed for your pup, you need to be prepared to enlist the help of willing family and friends, or hire a dog sitter or dog walker to check on your pooch throughout the day.  

puppy at adoption center

Reasons You Shouldn’t Adopt a Puppy

As cute and adorable as a little roly-poly puppy is, there are several reasons why adopting a puppy is not a good idea. If you can say yes to any of the following, then you need to seriously consider if adopting a puppy is your best bet, and perhaps opt for an older dog.

If any of these sounds like you, you might want to switch gears and adopt an older dog (or none at all):

  • You work extremely long hours during the day and are rarely home. (It’s not fair to your puppy if you’re never around to give her the attention that she needs)
  • Your work calls for you to travel often, or you like to make numerous trips throughout the year. (This one actually would apply to an older dog as well, unless you plan to bring your puppy with you or are prepared to pay dog sitting and boarding fees)
  • You are not prepared to stick to a schedule or you don’t have the time to devote to properly training your puppy.
  • You simply think it would be fun to have a puppy because they are cute; if you’re not ready or willing for the responsibility that goes along with owning a puppy, it’s best to walk away.

 older dog at animal shelter

What To Expect When You Adopt an Older Dog

There is nothing wrong with adopting an older dog, and in fact, going for a more mature pup can have many advantages. An older dog will not often require as much time and attention or exercise as a puppy. Of course, you still need to spend time with your new housemate. There’s no point adopting a dog if you’re just going to ignore her, but you definitely won’t have to spend time around the clock with an older pooch like you would with a new puppy. 

If you choose to adopt an older dog, strongly consider the exact age of the dog. If you choose a senior dog, then your dog may be more likely to develop potential health issues or have undiagnosed conditions that manifest themselves sooner than later. This can add up to costly vet bills that you were not expecting, at least not so soon. Also, consider why exactly you want a dog in the first place. For example, if you want a dog to grow up with your young toddler then you probably don’t want to adopt a dog that is any older than two or three years old. 

 

Which Is Easier To Train, a Puppy or an Older Dog?

Despite what they say, you can teach an old dog new tricks, but how easy or hard it is to do depends on you and your pooch. Some people actually think it’s harder to teach a puppy because a puppy tends to get easily distracted and is very active. Plus, you have the additional task of potty training and most likely dealing with multiple accidents; so make sure to have a lot of puppy cleaner on hand. Zymtatsic is great at taking care of pet stains and odors while your new roommate is learning where her bathroom is. 

Others find an older dog more of a challenge to train because a more mature pup is often more set in his ways and may have learned bad habits that first must be undone. Plus, depending on the breed, a dog might be very trainable, or extremely stubborn, so there are a number of factors at play when it comes to training your new pooch. Ultimately, it will come down to your dog’s individual personality, and your patience and determination. Either way, you can expect to put some effort into training, the difference with an older dog is that potentially, he may already have been well-trained and you simply need to learn the proper commands and won’t have to go through the full potty training process. 

dog in a new home

Does a Puppy or an Older Dog Adjust Better To a New Home?

This is another issue that is really dependent on the individual dog and isn’t necessarily influenced by the dog’s age. It can take anywhere from a few days or weeks (or even longer) for a dog to adjust to her new environment; no matter what his age, he will spend the first days at home in sort of a detox mode, adjusting to no longer being in a shelter. Eventually, your dog’s own personality will start to shine through, but most adopted dogs don’t feel fully comfortable and show 100% trust in their new family and home until at least a year or more. A lot of how long it takes depends on your dog’s previous experiences, so when you consider this aspect, an older dog could potentially take longer to adjust to a new home if he is coming from an abusive environment or is suffering from abandonment issues. 

Ways To Help Your New Dog Transition To Your Home

  • Ask the shelter if your dog has a special blanket or toy that you can take so that your pup has something familiar to bring into his new home. 
  • Instead of going inside your house first, start off in the backyard, and let your pup explore the new surroundings. This is also a good way to show him his ‘bathroom’ from the start and give him an opportunity to go to the potty before you bring him inside. 
  • Have a special zone prepared for your pup ahead of time and let him investigate; this way he has a place that is all his own where he can feel comfortable and safe.
  • Never underestimate the amazing power of dog treats. Have oodles of treats ready to lather your dog in praise and rewards and create positive experiences.
  • Have a special toy for your pup that can help keep him engaged and stimulated, like the Rolly Cannoli.

 

Choosing the best dog for you and your family is a very personal choice. It also extends beyond simply whether you want a puppy or an older dog. When you meet different adoption candidates, there will be some that spark a special feeling, you also need to consider the breed and what traits are common for that particular dog. 

For example, certain breeds are known for being very good family pets, while others are not known for their patience with children. If you are looking for a dog that you can register as a service animal, there are certain breeds that are highly recommended. You also want to consider the size of the breed. If you adopt a small little puppy, he’s not necessarily going to stay that small; certain large dog breeds can become quite massive, and require rigorous exercise and training, not to mention your dog food bill will be a lot higher. Basically, there are a lot of things to consider when you get ready to adopt a dog, whether he is 4 months old or already approaching 80 in dog years.

Whether you adopt a puppy or an older dog, you can expect lots of changes in your life. Anytime you adopt a dog, there’s a whole laundry list of things to buy and things to do. Make sure you are prepared to fully take on the responsibility of dog ownership; financially, emotionally, physically, and mentally. When you do decide to bring home your new furry friend, the team at Neater Pets is here for you! We have incredible products to help your pup be her best, and our blog is full of great resources and insightful tips to help you be an awesome pup parent!
  • Fernando Becattini
What Are The Safest Dog Bowls Available?

What Are The Safest Dog Bowls Available?

When it comes to the safety of your dog’s dishes, not all materials are created equal


You would do anything for your dog, and the odds are good that when it comes to your checklist of what you need for your pup pal, you consider everything very carefully. However, sometimes, you might think a dog dish is just a dog dish, but your dog’s food bowl deserves just as much consideration as the type of dog food you put into it. Basically, think of it this way, would you eat off of a plate if it could potentially make you sick? Would you eat out of a bowl that might contaminate your food? Of course, you wouldn’t, so why should your best furry friend? 


Did you know that according to the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), pet bowls are the fourth most germ-filled place in the home? When it comes to dog bowls, not all dishes are created equal, and a big portion of what determines the safety of a dish is its material. Depending on what your pup’s bowl is made of, it might be super easy to clean or an absolute pain to keep sanitary, it can affect the temperature of your dog’s food, it can hold on to harmful bacteria, or it can stay in place or slip-and-slide all over your floor causing a big mess. In other words, the type of dish you get for your pooch matters, and obviously, you want to know which ones are the safe dog bowls, and which are best to avoid.

black dog near neater slow feeder

What Kind of Dog Bowls Are Safest?

You can find pet bowls made of stainless steel, aluminum, glass, porcelain, a number of different kinds of plastic, and a variety of other elements. Here’s a look at which types of dog bowls tend to be the best choice in terms of safety:

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel bowls tend to be at the top of the totem pole when it comes to safe dog bowls. There’s a reason that stainless steel is a go-to for top chefs everywhere. Stainless steel is non-porous, which means it won’t hold onto bad bacteria, plus it is super easy to clean which keeps it sanitary for your pup. 

Silicone

Silicone dog dishes are a fairly new addition to the pet department, but they are an awesome option, especially if you want to save space. This is because many silicone dog bowls are designed to collapse when not in use. Silicone is extremely heat resistant, easy-to-clean, doesn’t stain, and won’t hold on to yucky odors. 

english bulldog puppy near neater feeder

Which Dog Bowls Are Safe (with a few considerations)

Ceramic

Ceramic bowls are a fairly safe choice, as long as you do your due diligence before purchasing. Ceramic bowls are coated in a glaze, so make sure that the glaze is lead-free and the bowl is certified for food use. Otherwise, this is a good option for a dog bowl, as long as your pooch isn’t a rough and rowdy eater. In other words, if your dog tends to kick his bowl, slide it around, and paw at it, ceramic might not be the best choice. If the bowl gets chipped or dinged, these areas can harbor harmful bacteria, plus your dog is at risk for ingesting any small pieces that might break off of the bowl. 

Glass

Glass dishes are safe because they are non-porous, easy to keep clean, and won’t hold on to any harmful microbes or bacteria. However, just like with ceramic dishes, regularly check the dish for chips and cracks, and don’t use it if your pooch eats like a Tasmanian devil.

Stoneware

Stoneware is also non-porous and easy to keep clean. Like ceramic bowls, stoneware dishes also come with a glaze, so you need to make sure the glaze is lead-free and that the bowl is certified for use with food. 

Aluminum

Aluminum is sturdy, durable, and easy to clean, but it can also allow certain substances to seep into your pet’s food, therefore, as with the rest of the dishes in this category, research is key. Ensure that the bowl was manufactured in a safe way, and free from harmful bacteria.

plastic dog bowl

What Are the Least Safe Dog Bowls?

Of course, if there are dog bowls that are the safest choices, then there are also ones that are best left on the pet store shelf. The main material that you need to be extra careful with is cheap plastic. There are dog dishes that are made of very high-quality, BPA-free plastic, that are extremely durable and safe, so you just want to make sure to really do your homework before purchasing a plastic dish. 


When it comes to plastic dog bowls, keep these pointers in mind:

  • Durability

Make sure that the bowl you choose is made from super-durable, heavy-duty plastic so that it cannot be easily scratched or chewed. Small scratches in plastic, sometimes even too small to be seen, hold onto harmful bacteria and organisms that can make your pooch very ill. Plus, if your pup uses his dish as a chew toy, he can swallow small pieces of plastic that can cause serious complications like severe stomach pain or an intestinal blockage.

These chemicals are used in the production of a number of different products, and you don’t need them in your pet’s dish. While we know that BPA can potentially cause several adverse health effects, research is still unclear on the different problems that may or may not be caused by phthalates.

puppy golden retriever inside bowl

What Problems Can Occur from Using an Unsafe Bowl?

If your pup eats from a bowl that is made from a less-than-safe material, he increases his odds of ingesting harmful substances and bacteria that can cause a host of issues, like:

  • Intestinal blockage or choking (if he eats a small piece of plastic, glass, or other material that chipped off of his dish).
  • Picking up an illness from eating germs such as E. coli and salmonella.
  • Lead poisoning (if there was lead used in the manufacture of the dish or the glaze on ceramic and stoneware bowls, this lead can seep into your pet’s food). 

Extra Considerations for Choosing Safe Dog Bowls

Of course, in addition to what your dog’s bowls are made from, there are a few extra considerations when choosing your pup’s dishes. Try an elevated feeder to help ease back and neck strain, aid in digestion, and keep your dog’s eating area neater. 


Also, if your pup tends to be a messy eater or drinker or eats extremely fast, a non-tip slow-feed-bowl is a great option to help your dog slow down and eat at a safer and healthier pace. If you live in a hot climate, then you might want to try a polar bowl for your pet’s outdoor water dish to ensure he doesn’t become overheated. These bowls are designed in a way in which they keep water nice and cool for a long period of time. 


No matter what feeding schedule your dog follows, ensuring that he is eating from high-quality, safe dishes is a top priority. At Neater Pets, we understand that your pets deserve only the best; that’s why we pay extra special attention to all of our products and how they are designed. For more great tips on how to care for your furry family members, make sure to check out the rest of our blog!
  • Fernando Becattini
20 Best Apps to Download for Dog Owners (Updated 2020)

20 Best Apps to Download for Dog Owners (Updated 2020)

Need a helping paw with your canine pal? Check out these helpful dog phone apps


Today, technology is king. You can do a multitude of tasks from your phone, including looking up important information, finding directions, ordering food, shopping, counting your steps, well, the list is pretty endless. It’s true what they say these days, “there’s an app for that.” 

Well, if you’re a dog owner, there are quite a few apps out there that are geared specifically toward people with canine companions. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you need to download every single one, you’d never have the storage space on your phone. Instead, focus on these 20 choices when it comes to the best apps for dog owners, and take your pick based on what makes the most sense for you and your puppy pal.


The 4 Best Apps for Finding Dog-Friendly Spots

bring fido phone app

BringFido

This convenient app lets you explore different pet-friendly places that you can enjoy with your pooch. Users can search through over 250,000 different locations, including dog parks, hotels, attractions, restaurants, vacation rentals, and more, and learn each location's doggy rules, such as leash laws and other important info.

bring fido app

Petlas

This global database (The Pet Atlas) includes multiple features such as the ability to explore over 100,000 pet-friendly locations, over 50,000 listings of vet practices throughout the world, and even danger alerts. You can give (and get) a heads up from other pet owners about potentially dangerous situations for pets, such as poisonous plants in a park.  

all trails phone app

All Trails

If you’re into hiking, biking, backpacking, and other outdoor adventures that take you to the trails, this app lets you find all of the top trails where your dog can tag along with you. You can explore over 100,000 trails and filter them by difficulty level, length, and more. You can get driving directions through the app as well as create a list of your favorite trails. 

barkhappy phone app

BarkHappy

Connect with nearby dog owners, discover dog-friendly events and locations, engage in fun activities with your pup, and receive lost and found alerts with this useful app. You can even create and host your own doggy playdates and invite others through the app, plus receive exclusive deals on certain pet products.


The 7 Best Apps for Doggy Wellness

petcoach app

PetCoach

How would you like to be able to get expert advice about your pup through a convenient online chat? PetCoach lets you do just that -- with its live chat tool, you can talk with veterinarians and other pet experts about your pet’s health, behavior, and nutrition. 

pet first aid app

Pet First Aid

If you’re a pet owner, then this app from the American Red Cross is a must for you! The app puts expert veterinarian advice for everyday pet emergencies right at your fingertips. The info is easy to understand, informative, and best of all, right there when you need it. The Red Cross also offers in-person pet first aid classes.

whistle app

Whistle

This app lets you track your dog’s location, monitor his fitness level, health, and more. The app is free, but you will need to purchase the device and a subscription is required. Users get handy notifications when their pet leaves a designated safe zone, as well as virtual vet support to help you be the best pet parent possible.

 puptox app

PupTox

This helpful app provides a crowd-sourced list of over 250 items that are considered toxic to dogs and cats. You can search for items or browse via convenient categories. Now you’ll never have to worry if those plants you want to put in your garden are poisonous for your pooch, or if your dog gets a hold of some table scraps, you can run a quick check to see if they’re on the tox list. 

Tractive dog walk app

Tractive Dog Walk

This app uses your phone’s GPS to track your pup’s walks, plus you can log how far and long your pooch traveled, and snap photos as you stroll along together. You can even record your dog’s bathroom habits! This app is great for dog owners, and also a great tool for professional dog walkers that want a thorough record to provide to their clients. 

dog buddy app

Dog Buddy

Keep track of your dog’s vet visits, vaccines, health records, medications, activity level, walks, and more with this app. You can also record milestones, photos, and a doggy diary, as well as access basic pet CPR and first-aid info, and set up reminders for vaccinations

ikibble phone app

iKibble

This app provides a database that gives you quick access to a list of common foods and tells you which are safe for your pup to eat. It also provides information about the foods, including health benefits, feeding instructions, and how to properly prep the food. You can keep track of your dog’s favorite foods, and safely introduce new foods to your pal. 


The 5 Best Apps for Dog Services

rover phone app

Rover 

This app (and website) allows you to search through an extensive database of trusted services for dogs and cats. You can find pet sitters, dog walkers, house sitting, drop-in visits, boarding, and doggy daycare, all through a convenient search tool. All of the services are backed by the Rover Guarantee and include 24/7 support, photo updates, and reservation protection.

wag! phone app

Wag!

Search through a database of background-checked dog walkers and other service providers, including sitters, boarders, and more, all complete with 24/7 customer support and backed by $1 million in home liability insurance. The company also donates a portion of each walk that is booked through the platform toward feeding a shelter dog in your local area.

chewy phone app

Chewy

Set up a convenient auto-ship for your pet’s dog food, medications, and more through the Chewy app. You will get access to 24/7 support and receive discounts on most auto-ship orders.

Dog Monitor and Pet Cam by Annie phone app

Dog Monitor and Pet Cam by Annie

This app and monitor system is like a baby monitor for your pooch. You’ll need a subscription service, but then you’ll have full, real-time access to your fur baby no matter what time of day or night. Use the app to keep an eye on your pet or soothe him when you’re away, which can come in super handy if you have a dog that is dealing with separation anxiety.

healthy paws pet insurance phone app

Healthy Paws Pet Insurance

This site allows you to check for insurance rates, quickly and easily submit claims from anywhere, upload pet photos, update your information, review your insurance policy, and check the status of your claims, all from the palm of your hand. You can also access their blog for helpful health and training resources.



4 Extra Apps for Doggy Fun

barkcam phone app

BarkCam

Want to get the perfect pic of your puppy pal? BarkCam features 15 different sounds designed to get your dog’s attention so you can snap a great photo. 

pupper phone app

Puppr

This app is like having a little dog trainer in your pocket, just BYOT, Bring Your Own Treats. You can look at easy to follow photo instructions to teach your pup over 50 tricks using the built-in clicker, plus get your training questions answered via a live chat feature. 

dog whistler phone app

Dog Whistler

This app is exactly what it sounds like, a dog whistle for your phone. You can choose from a variety of frequencies and create different lengths for your whistle. Use it as a training tool for your pooch, or just test it out on your friends to see how long they can take it. 

dog translator phone app

Dog Translator

Okay, so this one is completely all in fun, and of course, it isn’t going to actually tell you what your dog is saying...but if you ever wondered what your pup was trying to tell you, this app gives you a silly way to do it. 




While you may not need all of these apps (and hey, maybe you do), this definitely helps narrow down your options! Depending on what you need the most help with when it comes to your furry friend, this list can help you handpick the dog phone apps that best fit your lifestyle. For extra insights into ways to make a better life for you and your dog, make sure to check out the rest of our blog!
  • Fernando Becattini
What Is a Neater Feeder?

What Is a Neater Feeder?

Is your pet a messy eater? The Neater Feeder keeps meal time clean


Uh-oh, it happened again, your pet approached dinner time like a Tasmanian devil, whirling and devouring his food in a cloud of kibble until there’s nothing left in his dish. After your messy eater has finished his meal, if you are confident that there is more food and water on your floor (and on your pet) than is actually in his stomach— you may want to read on for a solution. 

Whether your furry friend fears that someone or something else is going to gobble up his food, or perhaps, he’s just developed a habit of eating and drinking like there’s no tomorrow, the huge mess that he leaves behind is not fun. Besides being a pain to clean, frequent amounts of pet food and water sitting on your floors can lead to stains, mold, and other unpleasant side effects. So what do you do? You take a look at the Neater Feeder and make sure pet food and water go from your pal’s dish to his stomach, and nowhere else.

 neater feeder instructions and how it works

What Is the Neater Feeder?

The Neater Feeder’s unique design features raised walls that prevent splashes and spills from ending up on your floor. Now, if your pet chows down or gets excited and kick his bowl, you don’t have to worry about a mess ending up all over the place. The system is created in a way that keeps spilled food in a reservoir located on top of the feeder, while water gently flows into a lower reservoir via a filtering system.  The lower basin is large enough to contain more water than the dish can hold, so you never have to worry about overflow! The bonus is food and water stays clean and isn’t wasted, so you can safely reuse it. 

Each Neater Feeder comes with non-skid rubber feet and two stainless steel bowls, which won’t hold onto bacteria and odors. Plus, it’s dishwasher-safe, making clean-up a breeze! 

 

Know Your Options

Not only is the Neater Feeder super functional, but it’s all about form too, with a pleasant-looking style and available in a wide array of colors so that you are sure to find the best fit for your home’s design. Here are a few options to consider when choosing the Neater Feeder that is the right fit for you and your pet. 


The feeder comes in a deluxe or express model; the deluxe model features a heavier gauge plastic, higher feeding position, larger water bowl, leg extensions, and higher walls for ultimate splash-guard protection. Depending on your pet’s eating habits and size, the express model may be a perfect choice, or you might opt to go with the deluxe if you have a larger animal or one that really likes to make a splash with his meals. 

 

gunmetal grey Neater Feeder Deluxe Large 4.3 star rating 29 Reviews

Neater Feeder Deluxe

The Neater Feeder Deluxe is available in gunmetal gray, aquamarine, cranberry, cappuccino, bronze, or midnight black, and is available in small, medium, and large. Plus, the deluxe model includes the option to add leg extensions to provide more elevation for your pet.


Small Neater Feeder Deluxe

1.5 - cup food bowl, 2.2-cup water bowl. Weight Range - up to 8lbs, Shoulder Height - up to 6”


Medium Neater Feeder Deluxe

3.5 - cup food bowl, 5-cup water bowl. Weight Range - 15-40lbs, Shoulder Height - 9”-12”


Large Neater Feeder Deluxe

7-cup food bowl, 9-cup water bowl. Weight Range - 35-100lbs+, Shoulder Height - 15” -21”

cappuccino Neater Feeder Express Large

Neater Feeder Express

The Neater Feeder Express is available in gunmetal gray and cappuccino and is available in small and large sizes. The express model does not provide the option to add leg extensions.


Small Neater Feeder Express

Two 1.5-cup bowls, Weight Range - up to 18lbs, Shoulder Height - up to 9”


Large Neater Feeder Express

Two 7-cup bowls, Weight Range - 18-100lbs+, Shoulder Height - over 9”

 

why use a neater feeder

Why Use the Neater Feeder?

In addition to how using the Neater Feeder protects your floors from damage like mold, stains, and other unsightly problems, it also keeps your pet clean. Your pal’s eating area remains nice and tidy, not to mention free of disease-carrying pests since unwanted bugs won’t be combing your floor for crumbs; this keeps things healthier for you and your pet. The Neater Feeder also features leg extensions that provide an elevated design which makes it more comfortable for your pet to eat, reducing strain on his neck and joints, and also improving digestion.  


Take a Look at What Others Are Saying About This Awesome Feeder

Pet owners of messy eaters and messy drinkers absolutely love how the Neater Feeder has made mealtimes cleaner and easier!  Here’s what some recent users have had to say about their experience with the Neater Feeder:


“Great Product! Just received my neater feeder and I love it. High-quality product. Now, no more food or water messes.”

-Karen H.


“I ordered 2 of the medium dog dishes with the extender feet. We have a Cocker Spaniel and a Cock-a-Poo. They were the perfect height for both of my dogs. No more spilled water or food. Also, the stainless dishes mounted inside the base works well. Our one dog used to kick around the old SS bowl on the floor and made a racket. Since owning the Neater Feeder, they no longer kick the bowls around the kitchen :) My Cocker, larger of the 2, also eats slower now because of the height of the dishes, so we are very pleased all around. Quality of the SS dishes is better than any local pet stores in our area which tend to be thinner. Thanks for such a great product.”

-Ruth


"Love, love, love this pet feeder! We bought one for our dog, Spanky. Sometimes when we leave him by himself at home, he gets upset and he would flip his dish over on the floor - not with this feeder. I don't have to clean up messes anymore. Yeah!!! Thanks!!”

-Theresa W.


“Absolutely love it. Our doggie does too. I'd recommend it to anyone who has a dog. Thank you!”

-Lisa C.

three neater feeders decorated

The Neater Feeder Is Great for Dogs and Cats!

Whether your messy eater is a chow-hound canine or a finicky feline, if you want meal times to be neater, this feeder is a great addition to your checklist. All cats can reach the bowls in the Neater Feeder Deluxe small size, or in the Neater Feeder Express. If you have a larger cat, you can use the Neater Feeder Deluxe medium size. If you have multiple cats, using the Neater Feeder Deluxe (small or medium) is an excellent option.


If you also want to encourage your canine companion to eat his dog food more slowly, our slow-feed bowl fits comfortably into the Neater Feeder Deluxe and Express large sizes. When your dog eats at a more relaxed pace, he reduces his risk for health issues such as bloating, vomiting, choking, aspirating his food, GDV, and more. 


At Neater Pets, we’re all about helping you find ways to make your pets shine! Your pets are part of our family, so it’s natural that you want to do the very best that you can for them. Check out the rest of our blog for more tips and resources on how your furry family members can be their happiest and healthiest!
  • Fernando Becattini
6 Swimming Safety Tips For Your Dog (Updated 2020)

6 Swimming Safety Tips For Your Dog (Updated 2020)

Plan to let your dog swim this summer? Knowing these tips can keep him safe


Summertime is approaching fast and along with it, longer and hotter days. When it comes to your pooch, there are all sorts of fun summer activities that you can share together. If your pup likes to escape the dog days of summer with a swim, then knowing the tips to keep him safe is a top priority. Whether your dog likes to splash around in a pool, lake, creek, or any other body of water, practicing proper swim safety is critical so your fun in the sun doesn't turn into an emergency vet visit or worse.

white Labrador retriever climbing out of pool

Can All Dogs Swim?

You may think swimming comes instinctively to all dogs, but there are actually certain breeds like basset hounds and bulldogs that cannot swim; it can be rather difficult for dogs with broad chests to stay afloat. There are also pups that should not swim because of potential health hazards. For example, brachycephalic breeds like Shih Tzu and pugs should avoid swimming because their short snouts make it difficult to breathe. Of course, it doesn’t mean these particular dogs can never play in the water; it just means extra precautions should be taken when they do. 


Similar to people, not every dog likes water, and in fact, some are downright terrified of it. Some dog breeds are more fond of water than others; many of the dogs that seem to love water the most tend to be larger breeds, but mostly it's all a matter of personal preference. If your canine companion enjoys the water, it’s best to assess his swimming skills in a shallow spot first, and no matter what, always supervise your pooch when he's making a splash.

golden retriever swimming with tennis ball

6 Dog Swimming Tips To Keep Your Pup Safe

Whether you plan to take your dog swimming or not, knowing some basic safety practices is always a good idea. Here are the safety guidelines that you'll want to commit to memory to make sure your dog can stay safe in the pool, or anywhere else he likes to splash around:


  • Take It Slow

Even if your dog has good instincts when it comes to the water, don’t go diving in headfirst. Introduce him to the water slowly, for example, by starting in the shallow end of a pool. Speak reassuringly and with confidence, praise and reward him with treats, and let him associate the water with a positive experience. Gradually, let your pup go a little farther into the water until he is confidently dog-paddling on his own. 

 

  • Get a Life Vest for Your Dog

Even though a life jacket might not be a common item on your puppy checklist, if your dog will be in water that he cannot comfortably stand in, he should wear a life vest. Dog life jackets come in various sizes; your best bet is to bring your pup with you to the pet store and have him fitted. 


  • Don’t Drink the Water

Your dog should not drink from lakes, the ocean, swimming pools, or any other body of water. Lakes and rivers can contain harmful bacteria, parasites, and blue-green algae that can lead to serious infections or health issues, and of course, swimming pools are treated with chemicals like chlorine that should not be ingested. 

The salt in the ocean can cause water to be rapidly pulled into your dog’s intestines, causing a sudden onset of what is often referred to as beach diarrhea. You should also check ahead to see if there are certain health risks associated with a particular beach; you can check for beach closures using the EPA’s beach advisory map.

 

  • Prevention is the Best Medicine

If your dog spends a lot of time outside, he is subject to more potential risks, like becoming overheated or dehydrated, so make sure that he has ample breaks and time in the shade, as well as access to cool fresh water. Plus, if your pup spends a lot of time in the water, he increases his risk of contracting certain diseases like Leptospirosis, so you might want to discuss possible vaccines with your vet. 

 

  • Wash Your Dog

After your pup’s water fun, give him a good rinse to wash off anything that might be hanging out on his coat, like chemicals or bacteria. Also, make sure his ears are completely dry to help prevent ear infections.

 

  • Watch Your Dog

Of course, always supervise your dog during any type of water activity, whether it’s just playtime in the shallows or a full-on swim session. However, you also want to watch your dog after his exposure to water as well, especially if it was in a lake, river, or ocean. If your pup did pick up some unpleasant bacteria, the sooner you notice any potential signs of infection or illness the better, so you can get your dog to the vet pronto.

grey and white dog playing in water

Dogs and Water Play

If your pup isn't a big fan of swimming, but he still seems to enjoy playing in the water, there are several things you can do to help him get his fix. The main thing is to stick to shallow water and always observe the above-mentioned water safety tips.

  • You can get a kiddie pool for your pup and put some of his favorite (floating) toys in it.
  • You can turn on the sprinkler or simply play “catch the water” with a garden hose.
  • You can let your pup splash around in a tub with just a few inches of water (if you have a smaller pooch).
  • If you live near a creek, or your dog is joining you on a hike, you can toss a stick around in a shallow area or enjoy your pup’s antics as he tries to make sense of the fish darting beneath the surface. 
brown dog jumping into pool

Best Places To Take Your Dog Swimming

Many places have special areas for swimming that are devoted to dogs. Whether it is a particular section of a beach, or a certain stretch of shore along a lake, or even an entire water park just for dogs, you can find different and unique places to take your pooch that involve fun and interactive waterplay. 


Depending on what city you live in, a simple online search can help you locate any such places near you and provide you with tips that are unique to that particular area. The advantage of taking your dog to one of these places is that they are specifically geared toward dogs, so your pup can socialize and splash around with some canine pals. 


Plus, since dogs are expected and welcomed, you’re less likely to have people around you that would rather not share their water fun with animals.  No matter where you plan to take your pup, familiarize yourself with the site’s rules and regulations, and always adhere to local leash laws. 


When you set out to enjoy some summer fun with your pup, keep these dog swimming tips in mind. You always want to play it safe when you’re around the water with your pooch; this way your pup is certain to have a blast splashing and splashing up a storm. For more helpful tips on how to keep your pets safe and sound, check out the rest of our blog. At Neater Pets, your pet’s health and happiness is our number one priority!
  • Fernando Becattini