Top 3 Reasons To Foster A Shelter Pet

By Christine A. Bournias

dog with pet foster

What Is Pet Fostering?

The sad reality is that shelters are overcrowded and simply cannot host the volume of furry bodies in need. Fostering is a way to provide temporary care and/or housing for these animals that need to live in a home environment prior to adoption.

By no fault of their own, most often animals are hurt or have serious illnesses that can’t be overcome. Some have insurmountable surgeries that can’t be performed because the animal is too far gone or too old for critical care. These animals, especially senior animals, often are misplaced and are much more difficult to place.

dog back sitting in park on leash

Worse, certain animals are often discriminated against based on their appearance. Unfortunately, the Black Dog Syndrome is real and common amongst shelters. It comes down to which animals have a better chance of adoption. While the numbers are improving, black dogs and cats are more difficult to adopt.

October 1 is National Black Dog Day! “A 1998 study of 1,468 dogs offered for adoption at a local Humane Society did find that dogs with black fur were a factor in whether they got adopted. However, at the same time in 2008, the general manager of the Los Angeles Animal Services found that in a 12-month period covering 30,046 dogs, slightly more dogs that were completely or predominantly black were adopted than dogs that were not. And these two aren’t the only contradictory studies.” —, Why Black Dogs Are Less Likely To Be Adopted

Many rescue organizations that don’t have a brick and mortar building in order to host the volume of animals that need shelter are typically run by Foster Pet Parents alone.

Fostering is ideal for some people, but not so much for others. Nonetheless, you must be prepared for all the responsibilities that go along with caring for different animals that may not be your first pick.

man with cat closeup

Why Do Rescue Organizations Need You To Foster?

Global animal welfare organizations need to relieve overcrowding and place needy animals in permanent forever homes.

And foster homes are in dire need.

When an animal is given the chance to live in a temporary, yet safe and supportive sanctuary, their chances for adoption increase exponentially.

This mission of any shelter is for needy animals to live out their lives in a forever home.

Due to the 2020 pandemic , many shelters hastened their efforts to ‘clear the shelters.’ While that sounds good in theory, it’s more important than ever to make sure these animals remain in loving homes.

Fostering or adopting a pet during time “at home” is wonderful. But as you transition back to your life as you know it—and return back to their semi-regular schedule—make sure that you’re fostering for the betterment of the animal.

Always stay just as committed to your furry companion through any unexpected life circumstances. Foster because you’re truly able to do it, not because you’re ‘bored.’.

Scenarios That Call For Temporary Homes:

  • An animal that suffers from anxiety of shelter stress, especially animals that need extra attention. As they await permanent residence in a foster home, their stress diminishes and they become better acclimated to the life of everyday human home life.
  • Abandoned, neglected, or abused animals benefit from a healthy human bond
  • Disabled, ill, injured, or senior animals that need dedicated medical attention
  • Animals in need of socialization and training for a family environment
  • People who suffer an area emergency or disaster. Animals displaced due to natural disasters are often awaiting reunion with their families. As these families work to re-establish their lives, they rely heavily on pet fosters.
  • Nursing cats and dogs
  • Young kittens and puppies that are too young to be adopted

dog near window with sun shining in

A Shelter Has A Responsibility To Their Animals

Just because you’re fostering, doesn’t mean it’s not as serious as adopting.

Look to an organization that will match animals with homes that best fit the needs of both the animal and the pet foster’s lifestyle. A reputable rescue organization will conduct a thorough vetting process and will find unique ways to save lives and ensure a successful fostering experience.

What An Organization Looks For In A Foster Pet Parent:

  • High level of commitment
  • Serious ONLY applicants
  • Financial security
  • Animal experience
  • Patience and understanding of shelter’s thorough vetting process

To minimize potential disharmony, shelter experts recommend keeping foster pets and their existing furry companions apart at certain times.When it comes to acknowledging an existing household environment, experienced Foster Pet Parents make sure to have a balance between moderate separation and proper socialization. For example, Foster Pet Parents may walk their own dogs together, but will chose to separate them for playtime and meals.

woman holding dog

A Foster Family Has A Responsibility To A Shelter Animal

Just like searching for the perfect adoptee for the animal’s forever home, a reputable rescue organization will also seek out an ideal candidate for pet fostering as well.

The organization who arranges your fostering journey should provide proper information about the animal you’re about to foster. Inquiry about your shelter pet’s entire medical history and temperament before bringing the shelter animal to meet the rest of the family—including other fur family members is a must.

boy with dog on yellow sofa

Make sure that the rescue organization is straightforward with you on either a clean bill of health or other pre-existing concerns that the shelter animal may have. If your animal is sick from the beginning, know what you’re getting yourself into.

The rescue or shelter needs to tell you any and all conditions upfront. Be sure that you have access and disclosure as to the animals health history, as well as their complete Veterinarian’s directives.

You’ll be assigned to take your foster to their Veterinarian visits with medical expenses covered by the organization. In order to increase their adoption chances, you’ll be asked to attend adoption events with your foster pet

When it comes to essential supplies, training, and special needs, there’s typically a pivot contact person from the shelter. That contact person should be able to provide you access to proper veterinary care or health & wellness clinics, as well as a 24-hour emergency number, should a problem arise.

vet with cat

Do YOU Have The Right Stuff To Foster?

Not certain you have what it takes to foster a shelter animal? While fostering is a heroic gesture, it isn’t the right choice for all. Therefore, it’s important to make a wise and foresighted decision.

A Foster Pet Parent has a vital role to play in this animal’s life. Fostering a shelter pet shouldn’t be taken lightly. Fosters are essential for the health and well-being of the animal.

As a temporary guardian to a dog or cat in need, Foster Pet Parents are the animal’s advocate. You represent them to the public and are their voice.

Why NOT you?

dog bandaged paw

How Do You Foster Without Falling In Love?

The rescue organization has approached you with the idea of fostering an animal from the rescue organization you support. Now what?

Remember, if you foster an animal, don’t think you won’t fall in love with them. You do fall in love. But, you’re fostering shelter animals to save lives.

“Fostering provides a great way for shelter animals to transition to a new home. When an animal in need receives the opportunity to live in a home environment, the fostering experience teaches the animal basic house manners, as well as the chance to socialize with people and other animals. It’s your opportunity to help animals without a long term commitment.” —Nicole A.

Fostering is one of the most unselfish things you can do for the love of an animal in need.

Foster = Love

Shelter animals usually find you, not the other way around. You have to decide if fostering a shelter animal is for you. Is it the right timing in your life—and do you have the resilience to do so?

woman with dog at park

What It Takes To Foster

Inner strength.

People will impose their beliefs on you and tell you that they just could never foster. Don’t let their own weaknesses deter you.

Be prepared, they’ll ask these questions:

  • “Why do you foster? (I couldn’t do it.)”
  • “How can you be a Foster Pet Parent without getting attached?”
  • “Doesn’t it hurt when you have to say good-bye?”

You got this.

Answer: Fostering gives a shelter pet a chance to know what true love is.

Here’s the reality: Fosters save lives. And shelters need you.

Characteristics Of A Foster Caregiver:

  • Compassionate
  • Committed
  • Devoted
  • Experienced
  • Gentle
  • Patience
  • Stamina

Be the reason they love humans.

pet adoption family

NOW Could Be Your Opportunity To Foster

You love your community. And you LOVE animals. Maybe it’s finally time to consider making the move to foster an animal in need?

Your philanthropic gestures do not go unnoticed and you’d do anything to save an animal in need. You give your heart and soul to help support your local rescue organizations by donating money—and precious time—to volunteer at the shelters.

Now you’re in the position to do more. It might just be the perfect time to foster a shelter pet.

Fostering an animal is gratifying and rewarding—it saves lives. Opening up your home to foster an animal in need can help the organization free up a spot for another animal in need also.

Most notable, it may provide you with the opportunity to channel the love you have for animals by caregiving for foster pet(s). By fostering, you have the honor of providing encouragement to an animal in their crucial stages of their life’s journey to being adopted.

woman kissing dog

3 Reasons To Be A Foster Pet Parent

1. Offers You The Opportunity To Give Back To Your Community

Can’t adopt just yet? Fostering is an excellent alternative. Helping your community by getting involved in adoption events is a good way to make a difference. Search the Petfinder database for local animal welfare organizations that could benefit from your fostering duties.

“Animal welfare organizations work to place lost, abandoned, abused, and relinquished animals in permanent homes. This helps relieve overcrowding and reduces an animal’s stress by providing a temporary and supportive sanctuary while he awaits permanent adoption.” —Pets For Patriots, The Wet Nose Blog

Contact your local organizations and rescue groups to learn about specific opportunities near you. In fact, Best Friends Pet Hotel is hosting adoption events at Pet Hotels near you.

woman with dog at park

Make Philanthropic Gestures

Fostering a shelter pet is a positive next step toward their forever home. What a better way to give back to your community and to the betterment, health, and well-being of pets in your area.

Follow Neighborhood Rules

Every county and town is different with the amount of animals allowed. Abide by your individual city laws and animal limits per household.

Stay Community Focused

1. Volunteer Where Your Passion Is
2. Help Needy Animals At Your Local Shelter
3. Make A Difference

woman kissing dog

2. Provides More Room In A Shelter

Fostering an animal in need is the most courageous thing you can do. When you foster one shelter animal, that leaves space for another needy animal to be saved.

You’re saving lives when you foster by giving an animal in need a chance at life. In addition, when you foster and you’re unable to own a pet due to lifestyle restrictions, you’ll reap benefits of pet ownership.

Why Animals In Need Benefit From Foster Pet Parents:

    • While animals are awaiting adoption, fostering offers a safe and supportive environment
    • Fostering reduces an animal’s stress by placing them in a comfortable home
    • By fostering, you improve an animal’s chances of obtaining qualified adoption applicants that can lead to adoption
    • When you foster a shelter pet, you have the chance to enhance their adoption potential
    • Many times relatives or friends of Military members don’t have the experience or cannot commit to long-term deployments. Fostering an animal for a military member provides a temporary, safe home to animals that anticipate being reunited with families following an emergency, natural disaster, or military deployment

According to Dog Is My CoPilot”, these two organizations help provide fostering services for deployed service member’s pet:

Guardian Angels for Soldier’s Pet: Assists active duty deploying military service members, wounded warriors and honorably discharged/disabled veterans with medical/homeless hardship situations to reunite them with their pets following deployments and/or hardships.

Dogs on Deployment : Facilitates an online community to arrange fosters for deployment, family illness. or any other circumstances that render a service member temporarily unable to care for a pet. This online resource was founded by an active duty husband and wife team.

military dog

Steps To Consider When Fostering:

      1. Make sure you’re ready to foster by considering all aspects of your life
      2. Consider other family members and/or household pets
      3. Conduct breed research, animal’s history, and temperament assessment
      4. If applicable, know how and when to separate your foster pet from other family members
      5. Work with a reputable rescue organization
      6. Provide a safe, calm home environment
      7. Keep animals secure with a fence and/or other escape barriers
      8. Communicate with one contact person during the transition and fostering process
      9. Look for transparency on medical health of animal
      10. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

dog giving paw to woman

At Home With Your Foster Pet?

There are several things you can do for your foster pet to have a good temporary home.

Homemade tunnels and obstacle courses and hide and seek sessions can be a wonderful way to provide a positive experience for your shelter pet. Nose tricks and interactive mind games help them stay alert. Interesting mental stimulation outside of a loud shelter is always positve.

Treat your furry friend to a frozen favorite dispensing toy or a spa-like pet massage in order to ease stress and comfort tired muscles. Just for fun, you can bake sticky treats for dogs or make a tuna snack for your cat.

girl reading to dog on bed

Venture Out With Your Foster Pet

Be sure to stay in shape together, enjoy the outdoors, read to them, sing them songs, and go for long walks together. Whether it’s a new direction around the block or a curious sniff and walk, adding adventure to you and your pet’s life is worth the extra energy you will expend.

Jumping through hoops will be new and different for your fostered pet. Also, training courses with a foster dog can be pivotal in their life. Encourage desired behavior and enjoy the process of making mistakes.

dog in grass

Give Them A Good Life: Camp Options

If it’s a dog you’re fostering, seek out your local and trusted Pet Hotel to watch your pets when/if they’re approved to be around other pets. New adventures and Doggy Day Camp offer an unique experience for your foster pet.

Camp benefits your dog’s physical and mental well-being. Remember current vaccinations are required for an interview assessment.

Best Friends Pet Hotel tennis ball
Photo Credit: Best Friends Pet Hotel (Avon)

3. Allows You The Chance To Love Other Pets

Fostering makes you feel needed. It expands the love in your heart. You’re a better person just by knowing another “furry” somebody else. You could be just the person they’re searching for to help them.

Fostering a shelter animal isn’t a replacement for adopting one of your own or filling the void in your heart when you lose your furry family member. It still takes a special person to foster other pets. Remember, your fostered shelter pet is a completely different animal than your own.

Enjoy The Foster Pet For Everything They Are

A foster pet can bring a sense of joy and fresh starts to a family and their future family.

Perhaps you’re still healing through the mourning process of losing a beloved pet? Keep your pet memories alive, but take the time you need to heal. Focus on everything your foster pet is and not what they’re not. Whatever you do, try not to compare the two.

Loving a pet is good for you.

woman with cat's head on shoulder

What Is A “Failed Foster?

Most Foster Pet Parents realize when the time comes to let go. They relinquish the shelter pet to another person for adoption because they recognize it’s in the best long-term interests of the animal to have a permanent home.

Foster Pet Parents are there to shepherd the journey for the animals next stage in life. It gives us a chance to channel our love and passion for what we believe in.

However, some Foster Pet Parents fail.

“Sometimes volunteers become so attached to the animals in their charge that they legally adopt them. This is known as a ‘foster failure’ because the capacity of the volunteer to care for other ‘temporary’ pets is diminished by one.”Pets For Patriots, The Wet Nose Blog

It’s common for fosters who are caring for animals for an extended period of time to develop strong bonds that lead to ‘foster failure.’ Some Foster Pet Parents get too attached to their shelter pets and keep them as their own. This failure situation is acceptable. While they fail the fostering process, they succeed at giving that animal a winning home.

woman hugging big dog

Fostering a shelter animal provides temporary care to those furry friends who benefit from living in a home environment. It’s a terrific way to give a shelter animal a chance, while at the same time enhancing your own life with the responsibility and companionship of an adoring pet.

So, do you have room in your family for one more?

Consider fostering a shelter pet—you could be the best thing that happens to that animal. You might just be that person that’s a lifetime Foster Pet Parent that both your local shelter and community rely on.

Good luck with your decision. We’re here to help.



About The Author:

Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

Keep Your Pet Memories Alive: The 3 Most Important Things To Do With Them Now

By Christine A. Bournias

dog giving paw to human

Care For Your Pet Like Their Life Depends On It

It’s simple: Give your pets the best life they could ever ask for—NOW, while they’re here with you.

Much like losing a significant human, losing our pets can be devastating. Many people have said that losing a pet is even more intense than human loss. And nobody can compare the degrees of pain felt by an individual person.

woman petting dog

We’re all different.

Fact: If you love your furry friend(s) with all your heart, you will have to say good-bye at some point. Going into this kind of special relationship with your pet—even while knowing this difficult fact—from the get go—is the most unconditional love there can be.

Pet Parents everywhere go into the love affair knowing this reality. Then their love and admiration increases, and the bond between pet and caregiver strengthens. Living in the moment and being as prepared (as you can be) in advance helps ease our mind. But, no matter how much you prepare, loss is never easy.

Pets play a vital role in our daily lives and become a huge part of our families. They lighten up our days and nights during challenging times and keep us healthy. Our pets become our companions, our confidants—our cuddy buddies.

Whether furry, fuzzy, or feathered, the pain of losing a pet is real.

But, let’s first talk about dogs…

dog kissing young girl

There’s Always That One Special Dog

Many of us have felt the pain of losing a precious pal. Your dog becomes a member of the family. Preparation for the inevitable while your pet is still alive is key. Everything that you do for your dog each day adds up to their total quality of life. It’s not just the first week or last week of their life that we remember or think about—it’s all those memories in between.

It’s not the destination. It’s the journey.

Some say that losing your first dog is most difficult, however, we understand that each and every dog you own offers you its very own unique love. Nonetheless, there are just some dogs that make a bigger impact than others.

If this bond is not love, we don’t know what is.

No matter if it’s your first, fourth, or fortieth animal to love and care for, the bond between you two couldn’t be stronger. You love each one of them all in various ways, but as the saying goes, there’s always that one special dog.

Much More Than Love:

  • Admiration
  • Dedication
  • Financial Commitment
  • Medical Attention
  • Patience
  • Resilience
  • Respect
  • Socialization
  • Training
  • Trust

Our companions keep us responsible and remind us to play. You as a Pet Parent have a responsibility to protect and care for your furry friend with all your might.

man dog sofa high five

It’s truly unfair that we typically outlive our beloved furry family members.

There are five common stages of grief that occur when we lose humans – and when we lose animals:

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance

With the loss of any loved one, profound grief is normal. Grief must be met with an abundance of resilience. Look it straight in the eye and conquer its power over you. TODAY.

Bottom line: We never truly “get over it”, we just simply get through it.

little girl sitting with arm around dog

Caregiver Responsibility: Care For Your Dog Like Their Life Depends On It

Our pets look to us to keep them safe and be their #1 health advocate from the beginning to when it’s time to help them cross over the rainbow bridge.

When you decide to care for a furry friend, make sure you’re ready to accept every stage of your dog’s life—from puppy to adulthood. Look to senior pets for loads of surprises and lots of interesting facts. With knowledge as your power, you can offer your precious pal the care they deserve at all times.

Okay, we understand.

These ideas can’t bring your dog back—nor can they keep them (physically) alive forever. However, they may serve as helpful reminders throughout your dog’s life—and when it’s time, through the grieving process.

By supplying the best life possible for your dog now, you can breathe life into your heart forever.

Keep In Mind: Love Is Not Enough

Paying close attention to details about your furry friend are all part of dog ownership. Regular health & wellness exams, spaying or neutering responsibility, grooming appointments, overall body observations, as well as a keen awareness of any changing signs in your pet, are just a fraction of the responsibility.

Caring for a dog is inside and out—nose to tail.

dog bath soap bubbles on head

Owning A Dog Is Much More Than Love. Do You Have What It Takes?

  • Admiration
  • Dedication
  • Financial Commitment
  • Health & Wellness
  • Medical attention
  • Patience
  • Resilience
  • Respect
  • Trust
  • More Patience

dog at vet clinic

1. Make Memories

Take Pictures

Take lots and lots of pictures of your dog.

A photograph speaks volumes. While a photo of your dog is not the real thing, it can help capture magical moments in your life. Even when you think you’re capturing plenty of photographs, one day you’ll look into that family photo album box and wish you took more shots of your puppy.

taking dog's photo with phone camera

Many pet care hotels offer up holiday costume contests, bubble bashes, and fun photo opportunities for your pet. These pet places are known to take lots and lots of pictures of your furry friend too!

Your dog may not know exactly what’s on the menu of the day, nor do they fully understand party themes, but they do know when kind people and fellow dog friends are giving them the favorable attention they so much crave.

You’ll be glad you took your dog to their favorite Pet Hotel.

Silly — yet safe — activities with your dog all contribute to your sacred vault of memories.

dog pink wig funny photo collage
Photo Credit: Breanna Elizabeth, Best Friends Pet Hotel (Willow Grove)

Make Time

Do fun stuff with your dog.

Spend time that you didn’t think you had. Yes, you must make time. From puppies to senior dogs, provide your pet the opportunity to enjoy their life with you.

guy dog playing fetch stick beach

A good dose of physical exercise and mental stimulation for your dog will allow you both the chance to stay active and healthy.

Perhaps it’s time for your dog to enjoy a new experience, training protocol, or change of scenery? Get outdoors, go for a hike, sit by the lake, plan a puppy picnic, or teach your dog a game of basketball. “Shooting hoops” or jumping through hoops will be new and different for your pal.

Go ahead, drop to the floor, get on all fours and have some fun. What better way possible is there to experience life, than to experience life with your dog?

The Moment Comes But Once

When your dog licks your knee or kisses your hand when you give them a yummy extra snack, don’t push them away. This loving gesture from your dog might be their way of showing you trust, acceptance, and affection.

When they bark, validate what they’re barking about. When they’re whining, get to the core of where the behavior is coming from. Don’t just holler at your dog to be quiet. Identify their needs and tell them “Thank You.” (Now that’s a switch. Try it. It works.)

Try your best to have humor in their every shananigan when your dog runs around the house with a choice article of your clothing hanging from their mouth. Maybe they’re zooming around the room and laughing at you.

Maybe you’re unhappy or impatient with your dog. But, these are the trying times to refocus on your dog and giving them their best life. Their behavior might be your dog’s honest attempt at keeping you close to them. Think of it like us keeping a photograph of the person or persons we love by our nightstand—meaningful.

Pay close attention and you’ll discover your answer of what you’re looking for them to do. They aren’t just pestering you to go in and out, more times than not, they just want you to go outside with them!

Remember dogs will be dogs. They just want to please you. You just have to show them how. Demonstrate what behavior you want.

man dog leash before walk

More Fun & Entertainment

Just for fun, you can bake a sticky treat or tuna snack for your cat. Blend up safe dogeritas or make yummy, homemade dog safe ingredient ice cream in warmer weather! Freeze and stuff their favorite dispensing toy each week. And, when they’ve had more exercise time than normal, treat your pal to a spa-like pet massage in order to ease and comfort their tired muscles.

Enjoy the humorous, rambunctious behaviors that your dog does. Make a conscious effort to pause and enjoy your dog—right when the moment happens. We all have a ton on our minds these days, but try to remember that exact moment in time as it occurs.

When your dog jumps up and down to see you when you’re home from a long day at work, remember all the hysterical tries of training the word “off.” The training process is what matters. Don’t strictly strive for success. Encourage desired behavior, but laugh when it doesn’t happen.

Sharpen your dog’s skills for small wins. Nobody’s perfect. Practice is perfection, even for your dog.

2. Live In The Moment

Remember to live like a dog.

Your furry friend only knows what’s happening at that given time. Their attention is now, then it’s gone. They don’t dwell on the past or anticipate the future. They reside in the present—with no expectations. They’re just happy now.

Learn new tricks, even if your dog is unsuccessful. The process is what matters. And timing. Laugh. Make mistakes together. Exercise patience. These moments are part of your forever memories. Dogs learn by conditioning and association. They respond with immediate reward. That’s why timing is critical, especially when they’re learning.

Dogs learn to live in every moment. Every. Single. Precious. Moment.

man dog hugging sofa

Play Games

Nothing is off limits when it comes to having more fun with your pet. Keep your pets occupied and happy with many fun things to do and lots of things to think about.

Constantly look for ways to provide healthy physical activity and mental stimulation. Pet puzzles and games can be effective in keeping your pet’s mind sharp throughout all stages of their life.
The Shell Game video

Homemade tunnels and obstacle courses and hide and seek sessions can be a wonderful way to live in the moment with your pet. Nose tricks and interactive mind games help your dog stay alert.

One on one attention, mental stimulation strategies, and reading books to your pets are just a few activities that you can do with your pet. Several pet care facilities add on “extras” like reading to their guests, blowing bubbles, or taking action videos.

Never, ever wish that your pet will slow down. Because, inevitably, they will.

Create Adventure: Live For Now

Whether it’s a new direction around the block or a curious sniff and walk together. Adding adventure to you and your pet’s life is worth the extra energy you will expend.

“Because of my dog, I started a small business, developing a program that incorporates dog exercise sessions. If I wouldn’t have made the time to exercise with my pup when he was 16 weeks old, I may have never started my dog yoga business.” —Sandy S.

Delight your pets and keep them happy.

No matter what age, you need to be willing to try new things and be innovative in your approach with your furry family member.

cute dog sitting with tongue out

Make A Pact To Try Something New

Socializing your pup early on can provide adequate activity and favorable stimulation that they need. Senior pets can also benefit from new training courses, tips, and tricks.

Dogs need their person(s), but they also benefit from being around other dogs.

Doggy Day Camp

Pet Hotels provide safe and healthy pet care for your furry friends.

From Doggy Day Camp back-to-school parties to cleaning up for doggy prom dates, your dog will appreciate the attention.

Seek out your local and trusted Pet Hotel to watch your pets while you’re out and about. Camp gives your dog a chance to meet new humans and dog pals. Dogs of all shapes, sizes, and ages enjoy carefully monitored playtime with dog pals. These Pet Professionals examine your pet’s age, size and temperament before even entering Camp’s play yard.

According to an article titled, “What You Should Know About The Stages of Grief” by Healthline, fond memories of our companion can fill the empty space left by the loss of a cherished pet. As you remember the pets who’ve passed through your life, please don’t forget the part of the relationship that included the best care you provided to them.

Expert boarding facilities or professional Pet Sitters can offer advice on pet care, socialization, training, play and stay plans too.</a. Discover local experts that know pet behavior and will assist you in finding the ideal play and/or stay environment for ALL your furry family members, including older Guests.

dog on floor with heart toy

3. Acceptance

Take all the time you need to heal. The healing journey is a marathon. Not a sprint. Grieving is an individual experience. It is normal and okay to grieve.

There’s no rush on getting over your dog. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. It’s also never ‘just a dog.’ Your dog was yours. The unique relationship was between you and your dog alone.

You loved your dog in ways you alone understand. You don’t need to justify or explain this affection.

Your dog was important to you, and that’s all that matters.

In 1972, the International Association of Pet Cemeteries and Crematories established
Pet Memorial Day.

You’ll never really understand this pain until your pet’s quality of life diminishes and you find yourself holding on for dear life. Your dog will tell you when it’s time. As unusual as it sounds, ask your dog to tell you they’re ready. Then give them permission to let go, when it’s time.

“I struggled with the decision even on our ‘Rainbow Bridge’ day. My Veterinarian stood by my side and said, ‘You don’t have to make the decision—I’ll make the decision for you.’ I don’t know what I would’ve done without my Veterinarian’s strength. —Chris B.

Keep Both Past And Present Pets Front Of Mind.

Proactive actions often offer a tangible way to cope with the grief of losing a family member and give you the chance to share your memorials.

If you’re seeking a way to memorialize your pet, here are some ideas to consider:

  1. Don’t try to change your dog. Accept them just the way they are.
  2. Keep a journal of each day with your dog at Doggy Day Camp
  3. In honor of your admiration of your pet, author a book
  4. Devote your mission to helping other Pet Parents
  5. Surround and immerse yourself with animals
  6. Establish a powerful support system with like-minded individuals
  7. Get creative: Design a memorial tattoo or learn how to paint a portrait of your pet
  8. Write a poem, letter, or blog about your pet
  9. Take nothing for granted and organize a keepsake photo album well in advance
  10. Plant a flower, tree, or garden memorial dedicated to your pet
  11. Create a stepping stone with a paw print, and place it in a pet garden.
  12. Donate funds to a local shelter in honor of your pet’s name
  13. Volunteer playtime or foster pets most in need at a rescue organization
  14. Organize a volunteer group to go to local dog parks to clean up debris
  15. Help train new animals for rescue and recovery by donating time to your local police department or fire rescue canine unit in honor of your pet’s name
  16. Plan a fundraiser event for a worthy animal cause
  17. Consider creating your pet’s Social Media page and join relative groups such as “iheartseniordog” for community support and pet topics
  18. Find resources for interesting ways to make memories at home with your dog
  19. Seek out a career that revolves around the pet industry
  20. On September 13, include #NationalPetMemorialDay within your Social Media posts


Stay Prepared And Pre-Plan

All pets deserve dignity and respect for the end of their life. A final resting place should be a beautiful celebration of your pet’s life. Your pet’s sensitive needs must be treated with utmost respect and care.

Research beautiful memorial tributes across the nation and in your area. Make certain your selected memorial is a special place to visit your pet on a regular basis. Harperlawn Pet Memorial Gardens in Michigan is just one location that offers you and your pet peace and serenity on lush and sprawling grounds.

dog playing with human in grass

National Pet Memorial Day

National Pet Memorial Day is the second Sunday in September. The holiday offers us an opportunity to remember the pets who’ve passed through our lives. Observe #NationalPetMemorialDay in your own unique ways.

Children And Pets? Write A Letter To Your Children From Their Dog Angel:

  • Describe their first moments together
  • Reiterate that there’s room in their heart to love and care for another fur baby
  • Explain that their special angel dog will bring a new pet to them when they know they’re truly ready, no sooner
  • Let your kids know that their next dog will indeed pick them to love
  • Confirm that there will always be a permanent place in their hearts for your dog

Know When (Or If) You’re Ready For A New Pet

Recognize if you have enough love in your heart for other animals that come after your little buddy.

Try wrapping your arms around a new dog to connect with. However, if you’re not ready to care for another pet—or if there’s not a connection immediately—don’t force the healing process.

dog dad daughter

A new pet can bring a sense of joy and fresh starts to a family. They can’t replace the dog you lost, however, they might provide a hopeful beginning. In addition, this new furry member of your family could possibly give a renewed sense of responsibility for you, your children, and/or other grieving family members.

How To Keep Your Dog In Your Heart Forever

Our pets remain a fabric thread, woven into our heart strings.

While your home may be awfully quiet without the shuffle of paw prints or constant jingle of dog tags from the other room, your little buddy will never leave your heart.

Keep your dog in your heart—always. They would want you to be happy.


“He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog…
You are his life, his love, his leader…
He will be yours faithful & true, to the last beat of his heart…
You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion…
My Charlie boy”
💙 —Steve C.


When you lose a pet, take all the time you need to heal.

The healing journey is different for everyone. Take care of yourself, your children, and your other pets that you may have in your home. They need you too. Be strong, yet be gentle on yourself during this painful healing journey.

Healing could be about dedicating your life to the pet industry or expressing yourself with the newness of fostering a rescue animal or volunteering time at your local shelter. Please allow yourself permission for a new chapter in your life.

Most notable, while your dog—or dogs—are with you, live large. Celebrate every one of your pet’s birthdays. Capture memories. Laugh with each tail wag. Enjoy each precious moment.

It’s simple: Give your pets the best life they could ever ask for. Don’t wait. Do it now.

dog birthday party balloons party hat


On the second Sunday in September, National Pet Memorial Day offers a moment to remember pets who have passed.

Would you like to purchase a day of Camp for another dog in honor of their name?

Best Friends Pet Hotel offers themed parties and safe exercise for loads of fun. Camp benefits your dog’s physical and mental well-being. Current vaccinations are required for an interview. Book an appointment today.

Want to know more ways to create memories with your pet? VISIT: Best Friends Pet Hotel or call your local Best Friends Pet Hotel.



About The Author:

Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

Keep Aging Pets Safe: 7 Signs To Watch For

By Christine A. Bournias

dog and cat resting on comforter


Your Pet Is Getting Old. Bite Your Tongue.

Your pet is having another birthday.

Each birthday celebration for your furry friend brings another year of joy into your life. Age also brings added responsibility for Pet Parents. As a responsible pet guardian, you need to watch for both physical and mental changes that can occur with your pet with each passing year.

Your pet’s everyday behaviors or habits can be telling signs of old age. Or, it can be a medical concern. At very least, aging signs are more reason to pay close attention to your pet’s good health and well-being.

The number one attribute that you can have as your pet ages is patience. If your pet begins to move slower and wants to sleep more than they want to play, be their advocate. And exercise lots of patience.

dog birthday party cake

7  Things To Watch Out For With Your Aging Pet

1. Bad Teeth & Breath

Look for dark or yellowing teeth. Plaque and food particles cause bad breath. Clean your pet’s teeth and brush their tongue on a regular basis. Proper dental hygiene early on can help eliminate foul breath and/or rotten chompers.

Dental Hygiene

Pets of all ages need good dental hygiene, but especially as they age. Getting your pet’s teeth professionally clean may be a wise investment. A younger animal may be able to recover more quickly than your elderly fur baby, as placing a senior pet under anesthesia often is risky.

Be certain to ask your trusted Veterinarian about regular cleaning procedures that would be ideal for your individual pet.

If your furry friend must go in for another unrelated procedure, you may consider getting their teeth cleaned at the same time of the surgery. That way, you’ll place less stress on your pet’s internal system.

dog teeth vet checkup

Teeth Cleaning Alternatives

A good old fashioned toothbrush, or even wiping their teeth with a toothy washcloth and homemade pet toothpaste in between cleanings can help prevent bad breath and decay.

Time and convenience is a common objective. Innovative teeth cleaning options are better than not cleaning them at all. Try placing toothpaste on a crunching treat. The crunch of the cookie with pet toothpaste can help clean the teeth with their chewing action.

Teeth Cleaning Products

Many Pet Parents look for alternative or supplement options when it comes to cleaning their pet’s teeth. There are many dental products on the market and you can feed your pet soft chews for older dogs and cats. The chews serve as a tasty treat and help with dental limitations. Always ask your Veterinarian for their recommendation first before you try something new.

dog with dog biscuit treat


Smaller dog breeds have increased dental problems. Develop a dental cleaning protocol with your Veterinarian team. By asking experienced pet experts, you can learn helpful tips on how to clean your little buddy’s teeth at home in between professional cleanings.

Pets dental hygiene is essential of any age—it’s a priority. As a responsible Pet Parent, be certain to make time for good dental health for your older furry friend.


2. Poor Eyesight & Loss of Hearing

Weakened Eyes

Look for cloudy eyes in aging pets. The eyes can be a telling sign of many age related health concerns.

The good news is, dogs don’t rely on their eyesight like humans do. Animals—especially dogs—have a heightened olfactory sense. Their nose is their navigation. Our pets rely mostly on smell, with their eyes being the least important. Their heightened senses arrive in this order:

  1. Nose
  2. Ears
  3. Eyes

Dogs have superior ways to see the world around them. With “predator” vision, they can see colors differently. They also see the world by movement and proprioception.

Be Your Pet’s Eyes

Avoid rearranging your furniture and be sure to train your pet early on with hand signals and associations. If you have other pets in the house, they can wear a little bell to help guide them to get around.

dog pug closeup

If your pet’s eyesight dims or their hearing diminishes, rest assured their other senses will kick in. In fact, dogs have the ability to sense their surroundings with a similar technique called echolocation . Echolocation in dogs works much like the same stunning ability as bats.


Special needs animals deserve loving homes too. Potential adopters tend to gravitate first towards cute, yet over-rambunctious dogs nine times out of ten. They ignore the really great ones. Our senior or blind/deaf animals are much easier to care for than typical animals that are viewed as “normal.” —N. Ahern. Hollow Creek Farm Equine and Canine Rescue

Blindness can strike at any age in pets. It can be the result of stress induced surgery, or even just one unfortunate diabetic seizure. Eye conditions are painful and can lead to more medical troubles in the future. Necessary eye removal surgery can be the kindest thing you can do for your furry friend. Animals don’t care about aesthetics like humans do. We put so much emphasis on appearance and impose our biases on our pets. Humans are the ones who invent these “poor me” stigmas. Animals don’t fret about their eyes or ears, they’re just as happy digging a hole in the dirt.

blind dog happyPhoto Credit: Hollow Creek Farm Equine and Canine Rescue


Senior Rescue animals need you the most. Old, large no eye dogs need homes too. Their eyes are just one part of the equation. Just because they’re older and blind, doesn’t mean they’re not


First symptoms of an ear infection are head shaking, scratching, and whining. If your pet’s ears have a bad smell or if you see dark coffee ground looking deposits in their ears, this could be signs of an infection. Eliminate a chance for more serious medical problems by consulting your Veterinarian right at the signs of discomfort. Early on, it’s wise to research a possible pet insurance plan that’s right for you.

If they can’t see or hear, there ARE ways to make it work. Don’t turn your back on your older family member. They need you as their caregiver more than ever.

All they really care about is pleasing you. Animals need love and socialization from their person more than they need their hearing or sight.


3. Mobility Difficulty: Legs & Limps

Does your pet feel frail and bony when you pick them up? Do they stagger while they walk? Is their gait different than they used to be?

Or, you might notice that your pet has trouble getting up. Freedom of movement could be a telltale sign of old age in your pets.

dog sleeping on hammock summer

As your pet ages, their bone structure is more brittle, their fur may shed more, and their muscles tend to atrophy. Nonetheless, they’re still your fur baby.

If you notice signs of your pet’s gait changing or if they can’t pick themselves up from the floor, it may be time to consider supplements for their joints and mobility.

Consult with your Veterinarian for medication or alternative healing remedies.

Honest Paws

CBD and the other beneficial cannabinoids found in the hemp plant work with the endocannabinoid system (ECS)—which all humans and animals possess. The ECS’s job is to promote balance in the body, making sure all major systems work together. If these ECS systems don’t promote adequate balance, phytocannabinoids (natural plant cannabinoids) work to connect to the ECS to help create a balanced state. Cannabinoids allow the body to self-heal.

beautiful cat sitting

Many Pet Parents rely on a variety of popular CBD (Cannabinoids) pet products .
Alternative product lines have different formulas to handle various conditions, including those that are common in with older animals:

  • Anxiety
  • Cracked paws
  • Fear of thunder and fireworks
  • Inconsistent sleep
  • Insect bites
  • Joint and mobility
  • Nervous licking
  • Seasonal allergies
  • Travel stress

dog laying on dog bed

Consult with a reputable Veterinarian and get regular check-ups. If you’re not able to get to your Veterinarian’s office, look for available and convenient
vaccination and wellness clinics that pop up in your area.

4. Appetite Loss: Nutrition & Medical Changes

When your pet ages, changes in appetite are common.

Your pet may experience food allergies and/or digestion sensitivities. Older pets might need more carbohydrates versus a higher protein percentage in their food or they may just want to eat a little less with temperature fluctuations.

Food Is Vital

What food you feed your pet is vital. And there’s a plethora of pet food brands to choose from. But your food selection comes down to what works for your budget, your pet’s unique needs, and your Veterinarian recommendations. I.e. Athletic or working dogs may need more protein to secure their muscle mass, but as they age, too much protein could tax their internal organs. Small, less active or older animals may have entirely different nutritional needs than larger breed counterparts.

Weight Fluctuations

Your pet’s body weight can fluctuate during all stages of their life. However, you’ll want to look for huge variances in weight. You’ll notice a big difference when you pick up or pet your furry friend. Extreme weight loss or gains could mean a visit to your Veterinarian’s office.
Too many treats can cause unhealthy gains too. Eating the wrong foods early in life can cause big problems later on. Although we love our pets, limit fatty food rewards or unhealthy human grade treats every time they perform a perfect “sit.”

dog looking over counter at cookies

Good nutrition and healthy fuel is vital, particularly when they age. Avoid the urge to feed your pets people food or table scraps and keep your pet away from common toxic foods, unknown food allergies, or potential pet danger.

You may already provide your pets with healthy and proper nutrition. But what about when your dog eats poop or likes to munch on blades of grass? If they’re having consistent stomach issues, these unappealing habits could be warning signs to medical concerns.

According to Dr. Martin Goldstein (Dr. Marty), pets could be at risk serious digestive problems. Talk to your Veterinarian about your pet’s eating habits and behaviors to determine if they may need a different diet or effective probiotic supplements.

cat eating cat food

Watch Out For Signs That Could Be Related To Food:

  • Thirst
  • Panting
  • Medical Changes
  • Fluctuation in weight
  • Excessive urination
  • Shredding
  • Dry, flaking skin

If you notice a huge loss of appetite or if your pet is sluggish or lethargic, seek medical assistance immediately. As your pet ages, it’s important to obtain a full panel of blood work. The kidney and liver organs are particularly ones to keep an eye on.

fat cat sitting and resting


senior dog

These Conditions Amplify In Senior Pets

●  Bleeding
●  Breathing
●  Choking
●  Cuts
●  Extreme Temperatures
●  Food and Allergies
●  Injuries (hot or cold, extreme or minor; sprains, tendons, ligaments, bones)
●  Insect Bites Or Stings
●  Poisonous Plants or Substances
●  Raw or Rough Paw Pads
●  Snake Bites
●  Sunburn
●  Safety tips

Be ready to respond to your older pet in the unfortunate event of an emergency. Keep an essential basic first aid or medical emergency kit and a copy of your pet’s medical records, vaccination records, and emergency phone numbers with you in the event of a life threatening health issue or when you plan to travel with your pet.

In addition, responsible Pet Parents have a pulse on the CDC animal guidelines on animal health and disease updates as they evolve.


5. Mental decline

Look for mental decline in your pet.

Pay attention to your pets and watch for mental decline. Do you find yourself repeating commands? Are they pulling to one side? Do they get lost more easily? Do they excessively repeat behaviors that previously came quickly to them? Are their activities of daily living becoming more difficult than usual?

dog standing

Like elderly humans, pets can get senile. “Old Dog Disease”, also known as Idiopathic or “Old Dog” Vestibular Disease, can mimic conditions of that of brain tumors or strokes. Tilted heads, falling over, circling in one direction, and/or mini seizures can be symptoms of a variety of diseases including Old Dog Disease.

dog resting

6. Exercise & Social Interaction

Your pet doesn’t come with an owners manual and every animal is different.

Is your pet becoming less interested in activities or that daily walk around the block? Disinterest in things that they usually love can be a sign that your pet needs your help. Maybe they could run circles around you or jump over tables before, but now they’re slowing down.

If you see your pet retracting or not coming when they’re called, observe them closely for other medical signs. If you’ve ruled out serious medical problems, perhaps you may want to include mental stimulation games in their playtime protocol.

Fun Games For Senior Pets

Delight your pets and keep them happy. No matter what age, you need to be willing to try new things and be innovative in your approach with your furry family member.
Pet puzzles and games can be effective in keeping your pets sharp throughout all stages of their life. Look for ways to provide healthy activity and mental stimulation.

Homemade tunnels and obstacle courses can work in a pinch. But don’t overload your pet in efforts to keep busy. Ten minutes of moderate exercise and mindful games and interactive tricks will suffice.

dog playing fun brain game

Socialize Senior Pets

Socializing your pup early on can provide adequate activity and favorable mental stimulation that they need. Senior pets can also benefit from new training courses or tips and tricks. Of course they need you, but they also benefit from being around other creatures like themselves.

dogs running and playing in grass

Playdates for dogs can be beneficial. Not all dogs play well together. In fact, they’re just as selective as humans when it comes to picking their furry friends.

If your dog is older, grumpy, or frail, they could be in pain and not want to deal with rambunctious dogs or young puppies. Ask your local Pet Hotel for customized boarding or individual pet care . Sometimes extra loving and attention from other pets and humans help your senior pet feel more special.

Keep your older pet occupied and happy with lots of fun things to do. Several pet care facilities add on “extras” like reading to their guests, blowing bubbles, or taking action videos.

Remember 10 minutes of mind games and tricks = 30 minute trot around the block.

Senior Pet Adventures

Get your pet out to enjoy the world—try new things and discover exciting adventures. Moderate, healthy exercise and Doggy Day Camp can keep your furry friends content and happy.

cups game treats for dogs

Designated pet care time for your “sugar face” can be a welcome surprise to your elderly pet. Senior pet care options can be convenient for both extended bouts of time or if you have to run quick errands. Seek out your local and trusted Pet Hotel to watch your older pets while you’re out and about.

When it’s safe to do so—and when the world is ready—a good way to bond with your gentle dog is to volunteer your time with your friendly friend. Research what it takes to become a support or certified therapy animal. Joyful home visits benefit older neighbors, assisted living facilities, and reading programs with children at public libraries.


7. Overstimulation & Heat Illness

Animals can get grouchy with old age.

Many things can affect your pet’s mood; weather, being cooped up, overstimulation, not enough exercise, or lack of socialization. Determine if there’s a serious medical problem by taking note of their state of mind and everyday behaviors.

Senior Pets And Too Much Human Time

tired old dog

As it turns out, hanging out with us humans can be too much for our extended fur family. Just like animals can be under-stimulated, overstimulation and fatigue can happen with our pets.

Even when family members respect their pet’s need for downtime, our pets have tremendous olfactory and hearing capabilities. The sounds of our everyday human conversations, loud children, a blaring television, or a scented candle can lead to undue stress, particularly in our older furry friends.

According to Jessica Pierce, a bioethicist and the Author of “Run, Spot, Run: The Ethics of Keeping Pets”, dogs need a break from their people from time to time to achieve emotional balance.

“Dogs can feel suffocated by us. In any home—especially a home with children—dogs need a safe zone or a quiet place where they can go if they need to chill out and not interact with anyone.” — Jessica Pierce “Run, Spot, Run: The Ethics of Keeping Pets”

Senior Pet Temperament

Maybe it’s time for your senior pet to experience a change of scenery?

Pet Hotels provide safe and healthy pet care for your furry friends. Pet professionals examine your pet’s age, size and temperament before entering Camp’s play yard. All pet’s playtime should be monitored closely to watch for signs of irritation or aggression.

two dogs hanging out in grass

Too much exercise can leave your aging pet exhausted. Be sure to allow your pet to stay at pet care facilities that knows the difference between unhealthy exhaustion and appropriate stimulation. The importance of rest has to be top priority.

Temperature Tolerance

Avoid exercising in extreme temperatures for your fur babies. Too much sun, heat, and humidity are dangerous for pets. Older animals have an even lower tolerance for extreme temperatures. Age is especially a concern when it comes to heat.

Your pets need frequent breaks from strenuous activities, especially in warmer temperatures. Extra summer tips help to keep your pets healthy.

Extreme temperatures (hot or cold) can affect your pet’s ability to keep their body’s internal core temperature regulated, particularly in the warm summer (or frigid winter) months. Refreshing water keeps your pet hydrated and replenished.

dog drinking water

Don’t leave your older pets outside for extended periods of hot weather and make sure your pet has access to shady spots to relax. Know the warning signs of heat exhaustion or overheating .


Senior Pets And Fun Age Specific Ideas

Keep your sugar face pet safe and happy this summer.

Pet Parent’s top priority and responsibility is their fur baby. Responsible Pet Parents look for signs of aging throughout all stages of their pet’s life. Natural signs of aging are common, however, others can be true medical warning signs. Senior or special needs pets look to us to be their advocate. Trust your Veterinarian for professional advice for your aging animal.

Expert boarding facilities or professional Pet Sitters can offer advice on pet care, socialization, training, play and stay plans too. . Discover local experts that know pet behavior and will assist you in finding the ideal play and/or stay environment for ALL your furry family members, including the old ones.

dogs playing outside with ball

If you own an older dog,

Best Friends Pet Hotel always accommodates our senior pet guests. With comfy beds, and plenty of love and patience, we welcome older dogs! Older pet guests are treated with the utmost care, monitored play yards, and expert trained staff. Themed parties and safe exercise are loads of fun and can benefit your older dog’s physical and mental well-being.

One on one attention, mental stimulation games, and reading books to your pets are just a few activities that can assist your aging pet. Current vaccinations are required for an interview. Book an appointment today.

dog and cat resting

Got a senior pet you’d like us to watch? Call your local Best Friends Pet Hotel.



About The Author:

Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

10 Summer Dog Safety Tips – To Beat The Heat

If you think you’re excited to get out and enjoy the sunshine, you can only imagine how your pet feels. But, before you dash out the door, remember safety first when it comes to you and your family’s best furry friends.

While you venture out with your pets this summer, keep your pet’s well-being as your number one priority. Health, wellness, and safety are on the top of the list when it comes to any new or outdoor adventures.

Watch our 10 Summer Dog Safety Tips video to beat the heat and have a safe and happy summer!

Learn more about keeping your pets safe this summer at our blog post: Your Pet and Summer Safety

Your Pet And Summer Safety

By Christine A. Bournias

dog in car trunk trip adventure

Have Fun. Pack For Safety.

If you think you’re excited to get out and enjoy the sunshine, you can only imagine how your pet feels. But, before you dash out the door, remember safety first when it comes to you and your family’s best furry friends.
While you venture out with your pets this summer, keep your pet’s well-being as your number one priority. Health, wellness, and safety are on the top of the list when it comes to any new or outdoor adventures.

As you pack up and get ready to take ​exciting adventures ​with your pets, be sure to pack common sense and a few reliable measures with you.

small white fluffy dog packed in suitcase

Your Pet’s Safety. Your Priority.

Pet Parents have a responsibility to care for and monitor their pets. Safety comes to mind, particularly with adventurous and curious pets of all kinds.

Unexplored terrain on rugged trails have different levels of elevation and dangerous interruptions. With unpredictable peaks, valleys, sticks, and stones on your route, your pet is at more risk of getting hurt.

cute dog laying on trail in forest

Animals have a way of finding things to get into when you’re not looking. As your pet discovers new trails, scents, and scenery, have lots of fun—but take precautions.

pet dad with dog playing fetch on beach

Sharp objects buried in a sand castle while you frolic together by the lake, can quickly turn a fun day at the beach to a long day at the Veterinarian’s office.

While you can’t predict what might be thrown in your path, you can carry with you a few emergency essentials and basic safety knowledge in the event of an unpredictable snake bite, bee sting, or unfortunate slip and fall. As you head out the door, consider packing a ​pet first aid kit​.

dog playing in tunnel

4 Safety Tips For Your Pet This Summer

1. Monitor Your Pet

Some pets are at more risk based on their activity level—or occupation. Military, hunting, herding, or field animals are at higher risk for injury than pets that prefer sitting on their owner’s laps. Regardless, accidents can happen. It’s not only service or canine officers that get injured.

military officer with dog and American flag

If you own a pet, you are responsible for their safety, health, and well-being. It only takes a second for an emergency to occur. Even the best dogs—or cats—can get into mischief.


An accident can happen anywhere. Best Friends Pet Hotel has trained Pet Professionals on staff who know what to do and who to call in case of emergency. Your pet is family, and reputable pet establishments take every needed precaution to ensure that your pet is safe at Camp, while cared for in 1:1 Individual care, in puppy playgroups, and/or all overnight stays.

two dogs running playing with ball in field

An Average Fido Can Get Into Mischief

The risk of pet accidentals also depends on the part of the country that you’re in and what your pets are exposed to. Do you have many different kinds of pets in the same household? Are they courageous and curious? Are they more active than the average fluff muffin? Are they enrolled in agility? Do they compete in rally sports? Are they jumpers? Do they climb fences? Are they exposed to heavy wooded or prevalent insect areas? Do they spend most of their time outdoors? Do they frequent pet care facilities?

dog sitting on mound on trail in forest

Summer = Holiday Pet Safety

Please keep a close eye on your pets, during the summer months—and always.

The fourth of July is a time to celebrate with picnics, family gatherings, and firework displays.

Fireworks can be dangerous and traumatic for pets. Some pets are skittish, hiding under tables or jumping into the arms of their Pet Parents. However, many animals get so frightened by fireworks that they often pull away and get loose.

4th of July dog with American flag


Due to loud fireworks, many pets get spooked and escape. In efforts to seek refuge and escape, many pets dart across the street and get hit by a car. Sadly, shelters across the United States are flooded during the summer months with preventable intakes. In fact, July is one of the busiest months for animal control.

To prevent deadly accidents, always look after your furry family members, especially during these summertime holidays.

If your pets stay with you for holiday festivities, know how to keep them safe. And if you’re travelling out of town during the summer, consider contacting an expert boarding facility ​or professional Pet Sitter.

Take Safety Precautions:

  • Keep identification tags with up-to-date information on your cats and dogs at all times.
  • Consider having a conversation with your ​Veterinarian about microchipping your pets. The microchip procedure can improve your chances of getting your pets back if they are lost. If your pets are currently microchipped, confirm with the microchip company that you have up-to-date microchip contact information and registry in place.
  • Professional behavioral therapy can help desensitize your pet and reduce risk of danger. If your pet needs medication, consult with your ​Veterinarian or Animal Behaviorist for alternate safety options.
  • Photographs are great for fun grooming contests,​ but they’re important for your pet’s safety as well. Take a recent photo of all your pets in the event they get lost.
  • Keep your environment secure with escape-proof rooms or crates.
  • Keep horses and livestock in fenced areas and far away from loud noises. Horses should wear breakaway halters with your correct contact information.
  • Remind your guests that you have pets that you care about. Place caution notification notes on exit doors and gates for your guests to remain vigilant.
  • Keep sparklers, charcoal, and food skewers away from curious pets.
  • Don’t let your pets get near your barbecue grill while in use or if it’s still hot.
  • After any summer holiday celebrations, check your yard for harmful explosives or debris before allowing pets outside to play. Even if you didn’t set off fireworks yourself, harmful debris can make its way into your yard.
    Leave your pets at ​​a safe place during firework displays, parades or other festive gatherings.

Emergency Matters

Emergencies can strike at any time and ‘snout to tail’ prevention, health, and wellness is critical. Be prepared by keeping a comprehensive pet first-aid kit, as well as human healthcare supplies in your luggage.

“35 years as a Paramedic, I’ve been confronted with about every human emergency medical situation possible. I was approached by members of our local Police K9 Unit Officers, expressing their interest in proper emergency K9 medic options for their police dogs in the event of a serious medical or traumatic situation. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
 (CPR) and first aid training for our four-legged Officer is in great demand. Our services help train our Police Officers in pet first aid and emergency care.” ​—Mike Burket, EMTP/K9 Medic/Instructor Pet Medics 911

Learn how to detect pet vitals and determine injury situations that require immediate veterinary care. Within critical seconds you’ll need to know whether or not to move your pet and/or how to restrain them if needed. At the very least, you need to know what to look for so you can seek immediate help.

dog playing with frisbee in ocean

Common Medical Conditions + Emergencies:

  • Bleeding
  • Breathing
  • Choking
  • Cuts
  • Extreme Temperatures
  • Food and Allergies
  • Injuries (hot or cold, extreme or minor; sprains, tendons, ligaments, bones)
  • Insect Bites Or Stings
  • Poisonous Plants or Substances
  • Raw or Rough Paw Pads
  • Snake Bites
  • Sunburn

dog jumping to catch frisbee

Be ready to respond in the unfortunate event of an emergency. Keeping an essential basic first aid or medical emergency kit on hand is a smart idea.

Smart Pet Investments:

  1. Pet First Aid Kits: Learn how to use your kit in the event of an emergency.
  2. Pet first aid certification of completion: Knowledge is power.
  3. Pet insurance: Get the policy that’s right for your pets. Evaluate their age and current health pre-conditions. A puppy may need more comprehensive wellness exams, but your senior dog may be faced with pre-existing conditions that you need to review ​before​ an incident occurs.

dog giving paw to vet

This list will help you assemble a general first-aid kit for a pet medical emergency or health issue. Include important paperwork, including a copy of your pet’s medical records, vaccination records, and emergency phone numbers too.

Comprehensive First Aid Kit Contents:

  • Adhesive Wrap Rolls (1″ and 3” width)
  • Antibiotic Cream
  • Bite/Sting Relief Pads
  • Blanket
  • Gauze Sponges (Large & Small)
  • Surgical Gloves
  • Syringe (10cc)
  • Peroxide Contact Solution
  • Providone-Iodine (Betadine) Topical Solution
  • Saline
  • Splints
  • Spare Collar and Leash
  • Thermometer
  • Triangular Bandage
  • Tweezers

two dogs playing in grass

“Seconds count when it comes to saving a life. Basic practical cardiopulmonary resuscitation
 (CPR) and first aid preparation is a must. Summertime safety includes both humans and your four-legged furry friend. In the event of a pet emergency, studies show that your dog has a better chance of surviving with general canine CPR, choking, and basic first aid knowledge.” —Amanda Zimmerman, EMT-P/AHA/Red Cross/ASHI Certified Instructor, Owner/Founder Save 1 CPR

two dogs playing in lake

2. Supply Good Nutrition and Hydration

Safe Foods

Provide your pets with healthy fuel and proper nutrition. Follow good hygiene practices and safe food handling to protect your family pets. Holiday parties and picnics usually include human food goodies, but avoid the urge to feed your pets people food or table scraps. Keep your pet(s) away from common toxic foods, unknown food allergies, or potential pet danger.

peanuts and peanut butter

“I never knew that lilies and tulips were poisonous to pets. My neighbor has a full flower tray on their deck. They sure are pretty to look at, but I steer my curious cats and rambunctious dog far away.” —​ Susan D .

two dogs eating knocked over plant

Fresh Water

Fill up your pet’s dog days of summer with lots of playtime, frequent rest breaks, and proper hydration.
Extreme temperatures (hot or cold) can affect your pet’s ability to keep their body’s internal core temperature regulated, particularly in the warm summer (or frigid winter) months. Refreshing water keeps your pet hydrated and replenished.

dog drinking fresh water in bowl

Don’t wait until your pet is hot and thirsty to drink water. While drinking* times can be monitored much like feeding times, cool, fresh water will benefit your dog’s health during every season.

*Always be sure to clean out their feeding bowls daily. If you have a puppy and excess urination is an issue, try keeping them on a regular drink and dinner schedule or feed ice chips to keep them cool and hydrated.

fresh water

3. Provide Activity, Mental Stimulation + Rest

You’ll jump through hoops to keep your dog happy and ​active​. However, like children, your pets need frequent breaks from strenuous activities, especially in the heat. Designate a safe resting spot and adequate resting times. Don’t overload your pet in efforts to keep busy. Ten minutes of moderate exercise and mindful games and interactive tricks ​will suffice.

dog with ball jumping through hoop

“Healthy rest is good for all animals, particularly our hard-working agility, heriding, rally or competing performers. Performance and show dogs need to be on their game, but it’s important to have a healthy balance of work and rest.” — T​erry C., Canine Handler, Trainer

two dogs sitting together in sun playground

4. Avoid Extreme Temperatures

Too much sun, heat, and humidity are dangerous for pets.

Keep your pets indoors when it’s hot. Period. Don’t leave them outside for extended periods of warm weather. Know the warning signs of heat exhaustion or overheating. Make sure your pet has access to shady spots to relax.

two dogs in backseat of car

Pets + Automotives

Going on a road trip? Running errands?

Never leave your pet in your vehicle when it’s hot (or cold) outside. Remember, our bodies respond quite differently to extreme temperatures than our furry counterparts.


With an outside temperature of only 70 degrees, a closed vehicle can heat up to 89 degrees in 10 minutes

A window opened a crack isn’t going to keep your pet safe.

A short time in a locked car is dangerous to pets—and children. Vehicle interiors heat up fast. The temperature in your vehicle increases in minutes. Even if you think that it’s only going to take you a few minutes to run in for an errand, that’s all the time it takes for your pet to get overheated.

If it’s slightly too warm for you, it’s way too hot for your pets. If it’s below zero wind chills, it’s too cold for animals.

When in doubt, leave your pal at home.

two dogs looking out car window at beach

According to Jan Null, CCM: Department of Geosciences, San Francisco State University, the temperature in your vehicle increases rapidly. Take a look:

vehicle temperatures for dogs

Resource: ​Trupanion​; Medical Insurance for your pet
Many domestic pets aren’t accustomed to extreme temperatures. In these severe weather conditions, keep your pets safe at home, or seek out your local and trusted Pet Hotel ​to watch your pets while you’re out and about. Designated pet care time can be convenient for both long bouts of time or quick errands.

5. Seek A Safe Place For Pets

As you come out of shelter in place restrictions and when you’re ready to venture out for fun this summer, take note of pet safety measures at your Pet Hotel:

dogs playing outside at doggy day camp
Photo Credit: Breanna Elizabeth, Best Friends Pet Hotel (Willow Grove)

Discover pet care offerings that provide you the opportunity to design your pet’s own stay. Discover local Pet Professionals that know pet behavior and will assist you in finding the ideal play and/or stay environment for ALL your furry family members.

cat packed in suitcase

Owner Of A Pug, Parrot, Or Pocket Pig?

Do you have a multi-pet family? Cats, dogs, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, birds? There are essential Pet Professionals that can help you care for them. Look for a place that caters to many different kinds of pets—dogs, cats, ​and p​ocket pets.

dog peeking out of suitcase

If you own a dog, ​Doggy Day Camp ​may be a nice outlet for your dog. Dogs of all shapes, sizes, and ages enjoy size, temperament, and carefully monitored playtime with dog pals. Themed parties are loads of fun and can benefit your dog’s mental well-being, allowing for safe exercise.

​Pack Your Bags For Fun. Sunshine & Safety!
Keeping your pet safe is a Pet Parent’s top priority and responsibility.
If you can’t watch them yourself during a holiday firework display, seek out a pet facility that has trained Pet Professionals to watch your pet.

Best Friends Pet Hotel ​is here to help keep your pet safe. Every pet guest is treated with care with monitored play yards and expert trained staff. Reading books to pets, playing catch, catching bubbles, splashing in pools, or hide and seek games are just some of the activities on the agenda.

dog and cat sitting on suitcase

Plan for your pets to play and expect safety. Prepare your pet’s ​vaccinations and book an appointment for an interview today.

Ready to keep your pet safe this summer? VISIT: ​ ​Best Friends Pet Hotel ​or call your local center.



About The Author:

Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

Doggy Day Camp: Ready For A New Adventure For Your Dog?

By Christine A. Bournias

happy do our car window road

​Is Your Dog Ready For A New Adventure? Perhaps It’s Camp Time!​

So, you and your dog have been cooped up in the house. If you think you’re restless, can you imagine how your dog feels?

dog in hammock

As the weather turns nice outside, it just might be time for you and your dogs to venture out of your normal routine. Maybe you’re ready for an adventure — something new in your pet’s busy schedule?

Doggy Day Camp Provides A Favorable Outlet For Dogs

Current dog camp regulars may need to be reacquainted to their normal routine. And, dog owners that have never tried a ​Doggy Day Camp ​might find today an ideal time to try one out.

Whether your dog functions best with individual playtimes, or if they thrive in a canine group setting, Doggy Day Camp allows your dog the opportunity to be their own dog.

dogs running and playing outside

7 Doggy Day Camp Tips

1. Take Medical Responsibility

Keep current with your pet’s vaccinations before entering any populated dog park or canine group setting. Before you venture out into a new place with your dog — regardless if it’s Doggy Day Camp or a beach just for dogs — it’s your duty as a pet owner to make sure that your dog is up-to-date on their vaccinations.

dog vaccinations veterinarian

Whether your dog is a young pup, or an aging senior, you owe it to your furry friend(s) to take special care of their medical needs. For your health and well-being of your pet, ​regular medical check-ups, conducted by your Veterinarian or trustworthy veterinary clinic, are a critical part of responsible pet ownership.

Be sure to consult with a ​trusted Veterinarian for medical care that’s appropriate for your pet.

2. Ask Questions, Consult With A Pet Expert

It’s beneficial to explore all of your boarding and daycare options.

Your dog may be the life of the party while other dogs may not. They may need more space from other people or dogs during playtime. Your dog may be a curious puppy transitioning into society or they might be an older dog that has little tolerance of rambunctious dogs.

In a Camp setting with other dog guests, they may even become possessive of a furry family member from the same household. ​Resource guarding ​can be minimized and/or avoided within an ideal environment and with properly trained staff.

“Once I allowed my dog to have a few days away from the house, Butch was calm and content with the whole family when he returned home.” ​—Tom D.

Within a different pack at Camp, dogs have a language all their own. Proper introduction and socialization into this new world is required for a well-adjusted pet at Doggy Day Camp—and at home as well.

Determine If 1:1 Care Is Right For You

Your dog may be different. That’s okay. Every pet is extraordinary and they should be cared for
as such. They may excel with individual care instead of within a large group setting.

dog peeking through heart cutout in fence

Dogs that need extra attention—or owners who prefer to have their pets play as a family—may find that a crowded play area is not right for them. Find a Pet Hotel that caters to your individual dog’s needs. True pet professionals are trained for safety and thrive on creating a happy, healthy experience for your pet.

You owe it to your furry friend to ​ask questions and explore the best route to take. Ask for a Pet Hotel interview at various times of the day, slow days—and at peak hours. If you know your pet well enough, you’ll immediately know if this is the place for your pet.

Many accommodating places are known to board cats and Pocket Pets, offering you the opportunity to design your pet’s own stay. Rest assured, whether you’re the proud owner of a pug, parrot, or pocket pig, there are essential professionals that can help you care for them. These pet professionals know how to think in terms of pet behavior and will help you find ​the ideal play and/or stay environment for your dog.

dogs puppies playing with ball in grass

3. Get An Assessment First

Look for the best environment for your dog to play or stay.

Determine if the facility is an ideal environment for your pet well in advance—not the day before you hop in the car or board an airplane to leave town. Your dog is family and they need a safe, healthy place to stay. Investing this time upfront is critical.

A thorough interview process needs to be conducted ​before​ attending any Doggy Day Camp activity. If your dog hasn’t attended Camp (or never stepped paw) in a boarding facility, it’s important to get your dog evaluated by​ leaders in the pet hospitality business. Pet Experts are trained to assess your pet for proper size and temperament​ during their initial visit.

Scheduling an interview for your dog well in advance of your drop off date will give you and your Pet Hotel time to make appropriate accommodations for your pet. In addition, reintroductions are necessary for Camp “regulars” to get back to normal at their local Pet Hotel.

dog friends hanging out at camp
Photo Credit: Breanna Elizabeth, Best Friends Pet Hotel (Willow Grove)

“If your dog has been away from boarding or Doggy Day Camp for more than a year, it’s time to schedule an interview to reevaluate your pet’s profile at Camp. As your dog adapts back into their canine group routine—and to ensure safety measures—we like to observe your dog’s behavior, check for up-to-date vaccines, and assess their overall demeanor when attending an area with new dogs and people. Our goal is to make sure all dogs have a fun, yet safe experience.” —​ Jessica H., Hotel Area Manager, ​Best Friends Pet Hotel

4. Ease Into Camp

Your pet needs plenty of physical activity, mental stimulation, and training time throughout all stages of their lives. But make sure you don’t do too much too soon.

dogs meeting each other, becoming friends

While dogs like variety, they’re creatures of habit and often become anxious with sudden changes to their new daily routine. They may even resist leaving their familiar humans. If your dog is showing signs of ​separation anxiety, try lessening the duration of sustained play. This plan might help ease their way back to their normal dog time at Camp.

“Your dog needs mental stimulation and physical exercise at Doggy Day Camp. If your pet has been stuck indoors for awhile, the sooner you get back to a regular schedule the better.” —Jenn C., Hotel Manager, ​Best Friends Pet Hotel (Wakefield)

Doggy Day Camp “Regulars” returning back to Camp might want to limit their high activity days and a lot of dogs all at once. If it’s been a few months, perhaps a handful of half days would be beneficial. The sooner your dog gets acclimated to their regular Camp days, the faster they can get adjusted to a healthy schedule of events. Dogs who are mentally stimulated—with lots of healthy exercise—have dependable eating and sleeping schedules also.

two dogs playing

When it’s time for your dog to get out of the house and have some fun with other dogs, you owe it to your pooch to make an appointment. Reserve something new and special for your pet and notice a difference in their overall behavior.

5. Allow Consistent Camp Time

Before shaking things up to their daily at home routine, it’s wise to establish a ​predictable​ and rewarding Doggy Day Camp schedule for your pet. Fill their ‘dog days of summer’ with lots of playtime, frequent rest breaks, and proper hydration.

“Healthy rest allows your dog the chance to recharge and refocus their energy at Camp. In contrast to popular belief, an exhausted dog is n​ ot​ necessarily a happy dog. In addition to all the extra fun and activity, we provide our pets plenty of rest time so t​ hey can excel in the play area.​” —M​elissa A., Hotel Manager,​ Best Friends Pet Hotel (Clinton Township) ​

If your dog has been stuck indoors with you for too long, ask your selected facility for a trial sleepover. This overnight stay is a good test on how well they do away from home. It could be just the vacation you both need! And if budget is a concern, seek out attractive first time overnight offers.

little dog sleeping with teddy bear

Even if your dog attends Camp one day a week, your dog will thank you for the variety of mental stimulation, physical exercise, and yes—a little time away from their human caregivers.

6. Get A New “Do” After Camp

Dogs like to play and get dirty. They also enjoy feeling fresh and clean. A little pampering will make your dog feel good all over. A day at the spa is always a treat — even for your dogs.

Scrub their teeth, clip their dew claws, and clean their ears. If your dog has gone too long without a good trim, it may be a great time for a ‘new hairdo.’

dog getting groomed by dog groomer

Seek out specialized ​grooming professionals ​who keep current with industry certifications and pet trends.

“Your dog’s grooming needs is important to their overall health and well-being. The recent global pandemic has changed the landscape of pet care and grooming precautions, however, our attention to detail in the pet hospitality business hasn’t changed. With a new series of health protocols to follow, we abide by all COVID-19 animal guidelines to ensure proper care for your beloved pet.” —​ Kim M., Hotel Manager,​ ​Best Friends Pet Hotel (North Plainfield)

7. Try New Things

Getting outdoors more often is a good feeling. If your dog gets a little wind in their nose, they are happy and content. Walking in nature or taking a new route on your hiking trail usually does the trick. But, if your dog is restless with their typical walks, they could be ready to attend Doggy Day Camp.

dog playing in tent at day care
Photo Credit: Best Friends Pet Hotel (Cincinnati)

No matter how macho your dog is, all dogs love extra attention.

Life is never mundane with Doggy Day Camp. Dogs of all shapes, sizes, and ages enjoy Camp. There are lots of interesting themed parties and loads of fun that benefit your dog.

Doggy Day Camp: It’s Like A Dog’s Bucket List:​

dog training with dog trainer

Play + Training + Treats

Keep things interesting by enrolling your dog in training courses. Even if your dog is well-behaved and was top of their class at puppy class, sign them up for a refresher course. 1. It keeps your dog’s mind sharp and 2. training class is something you can do together.


A dog performs best with conditioning. Positive reinforcement is not about “positive” in the positive/negative way. In dog training, positive reinforcement means “adding” on to desired behavior with marking and rewarding as the addition.

A different environment can solidify training constructs. Working with your dog and investing time for ​advanced training and tricks in many environments other than your house or backyard can be beneficial.

dog playing frisbee with human

Toys. Lots and lots of toys.

Purchasing fresh pet toys, including games, are helpful to fight boredom. Interactive, dispensing devices keep your dog occupied and entertained while they learn. Check out your Hotel’s retail bins in the lobby for something new to play with or chew on. There are many ​durable toys and long lasting chews ​that will keep your dog occupied for hours when they’re not at Camp.

Even old toys can seem new if you switch things up. Rotate and replace toys in their toy bin or play the name game! Dog toys can do wonders to playtime excitement.

But, what if your dog needs more?

dog story time at doggy day care
Photo Credit: Best Friends Pet Hotel (Cincinnati)

Best Friends At Home

To supplement your pet’s learning, teach them ​new tricks at home! The new ideas are sure to keep your dog’s tail wagging and bring a smile to your face.

Fun is endless when you have a dog: Read to them, ​bake biscuits, splash around in their kiddie pool, ​dress them up ​with ​bow ties, build obstacle courses, or offer your dog a challenging ​game of shells,​ hide and seek, or peek-a-boo.

dog sitting for biscuit treat

Your Dog Needs Doggy Day Camp

They love to run on the beach and explore new scenery. Working dogs need a “job” other dogs live for new friends, new people, and new toys. Many dog Campers benefit from physical exercise, mental stimulation, and a chance to meet other canines and new people.

Dogs need to greet other dogs and all sorts of other people.

dogs playing with kong toy

Getting Fido acclimated to a dog group setting requires careful pre-planning, time, and research in order to discover the best place for both you and your pet. Invest the time you need to find a place that you and your dog feels most comfortable with. If it’s the right place for your pet, you’ll notice a calm and content dog that looks forward to going to Camp ​and​ enjoys being at home too.

Our pets need their own time away from us to be their own dog. Besides, where else can your dog read books? So, let them romp, play, and experience new things.

Ready to learn more about Doggy Day Camp and other fun adventures? VISIT: ​Best Friends Pet Hotel or call your local center.



About The Author:

Christine A. Bournias resides in Michigan with her 2-pack; two new beautiful adopted miracles. As her “Angelwriter”, Nicodemus (1997-2010) is the wisdom behind the stories she shares. Christine champions the magnitude of building the bond between a dog and their person(s) by means of respectful communication and enduring admiration.

Fan Share Friday (09) – FINAL EPISODE

Fan Share Friday compiles all of your videos and pictures into a single episode full of fur, floppy ears, and belly rubs. This week’s episode is all of that and more! Watch to see a familiar face 🐶🐱!

This is our final Fan Share Friday episode as part of our “Best Friends at Home” video series. But no worries! – We’re making plans to continue featuring our fans and favorite furry ones into the future! So please continue to share your photos and videos with us. Send them to:

Watch all of our “Best Friends At Home” episodes at:

Quiz: Famous Dogs & Cats in History

Test your knowledge of some of the most famous and notable dogs and cats in history, and learn some fun and interesting facts along the way! – Courtesy of your friends at Best Friends Pet Hotel.

famous dog

Enjoy, have fun, and be sure to share your quiz results on social media when you’re finished.


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Water Play Activities for Dogs

As the weather warms up so does your dog! Engage in water play in your backyard and beyond and help keep things cool. This episode of “Best Friends at Home” provides some fun tips and activities for water play and enjoying the outdoors. Have fun and make a splash!

Planning on getting wet with your dog? Take some pictures and videos and share them with us at 

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Fan Share Friday (08)

This week’s episode of “Fan Share Friday” includes encounters with the outdoors, Livi’s Art Installation of Sleeping Positions, and birthday celebrations.

If you want to share with us what you’ve been doing with your pet at home, please send your pictures or videos to See you next week!

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