Category Archives: Dogs

Dog Days of Summer – How To Stay Cool!

Lori Waters

Lori Waters

Animal Expert Extraordinaire! at The Litter Sitter, inc.
Lori Waters is the author and voice behind Thee Inside Poop as well as the owner and operator of The Litter Sitter, a local dog walking and pet sitting company in Miami Beach, FL. When she's not busy blogging and taking care of clients' pets you can find her running around with her german shepherd Zoey or having in-depth conversations with her two fur balls, Michi and Oakley!
Lori Waters

Pet Sitter - Dog Walker

It’s already July and I swear I think I can almost cook an egg on the sidewalk!

For those of us living in scorching hot locations, like myself – thank you Miami, making sure our fur balls stay COOL during walks is of utmost importance but sometimes it can be challenging. I mean when you live in a city that’s virtually an oven 90% of the time it kind of makes you want to stay home and buy your pup a Doggy Lawn so you never have to leave your house again! But we all know that’s not healthy for our kids so we have to make the best of it and find new and creative ways to beat the heat!

So what exactly can you do to stay cool during the summer months?

Avoid Walking During Peak Hours (11a-4p)

This is by far the most important piece of information! I don’t know if you’ve ever walked outside at about noon on a sunny day but it is HOT. And I don’t just mean hot and humid, I mean so hot it makes your skin itch and burn. Now if it’s this uncomfortable for you as a person, can you imagine how much more uncomfortable it must be for your dog? Dogs who already have a higher temperature than we do (101.5 vs 98.6) and loads of fur. It’s insane. It can seem virtually impossible to avoid walking your dog during the mid day hours especially if Fido’s routine is 3-4 walks a day (am, mid day, afternoon and pm or a similar schedule) but there are some ways to get around this situation.

You can always walk your pup twice in the morning, their first walk being when you first wake up, one just before mid day at about 10a or 11a,  their third walk just after 4/5p and then one just before bed. I know for some pups this might be hard especially if they can’t hold it for longer than 4-5 hours at a time in which case it’s ok to let them out during the mid day hours for a quick potty break, 10-15 mins so they can do their business and get right back inside. At TLS – Dog Walking & Pet Care we offer a service just like that which comes in handy for our brachycephalic breeds and is great for all our dogs so they don’t have to be out in the heat for so long.

2014-10-10

Walk In The Shade | On Grass (Avoid Concrete) 

Walking in the shade is also a great way to stay cool. If you’ve beat the peak hours for hot temperatures and it’s still hot but not scorching, staying in the shade as well as walking on the grass is a bonus! It helps keep Fido cool, not to mention you don’t have to worry about their pads getting burned from walking on the hot pavement or about them overheating. I think the worst part about walking dogs during the summer is definitely the hot pavement. A lot of us pet owners don’t realize hot truly hot the ground can get but I myself have tested the pavement with my own two hands as well as feet and let me tell you… it’s hot. Just yesterday I saw a man walking from the beach barefoot… He didn’t have any shoes on and didn’t look like he had any on his person, which struck me as kind of odd, but you could clearly see that he was struggling as he made his way across the street to his car. He was literally speed walking and hoping around trying to make it to the grass to gain some relief. Granted our dogs have thicker pads/paws that we do but that can only help so much.

If you see your dog pacing back and forth and scratching/pawing at the ground, that’s a tell-tale sign that the ground is hot and they probably shouldn’t be standing in or around that area.

Drink Lots of Water!

Aside from avoiding peak hours, walking in the shade and/or on the grass it’s just as important that your pup stay hydrated. I usually carry a portable water bowl with me when I walk my dog but in the event that I forget to bring oneI  like to stop in at the local dog park so she can get a drink OR stop by one of the many water bowls around the area. Some local shops that are pet friendly always have full water bowls available for furry friends.

So what are you and your pup doing to stay cool this summer?

Leave your tips and comments down below, I’d love to hear them!

 

 

How To Keep Your Dog Entertained (Kong/Chew Toys)

Lori Waters

Lori Waters

Animal Expert Extraordinaire! at The Litter Sitter, inc.
Lori Waters is the author and voice behind Thee Inside Poop as well as the owner and operator of The Litter Sitter, a local dog walking and pet sitting company in Miami Beach, FL. When she's not busy blogging and taking care of clients' pets you can find her running around with her german shepherd Zoey or having in-depth conversations with her two fur balls, Michi and Oakley!
Lori Waters

How to keep your dog entertained

If you’re like me and happen to have a hyperactive dog, who no matter what you do ALWAYS has an endless supply of energy, then you’re constantly on the lookout for new and creative ways to engage and keep them from harassing you throughout the day! We all long for that peace and quite but can’t really get that let alone enjoy it when we have our dog(s) throwing their toys into our laps wanting to play fetch every 2.5 seconds (this is Zoey’s signature move whenever she wants to play).

One of my favorite things to do (and I do this with my dog and also my clients dogs) is to use some sort of chew toy. Chew toys are great interactive toys that you can fill up with food to keep their minds and bodies busy! Now the trick about chew toys is strategically placing the food inside the toy to make it challenging, but not impossible, to get at. If you just place treats and food inside where it only takes your dog a few minutes to retrieve then you’re not really giving your dog a good workout. You want your dog to problem solve and take time to dig out whatever goodies are in their chew toy.

KONG

Kongs are my go-to chew toys to use whenever I have a dog who needs to stay busy. They’re super durable (and also have extra tough chews if you have an avid chewer), come in a variety of sizes/colors and you can stuff them with virtually anything. When I use kongs I like to incorporate peanut butter (Kong sells a dog friendly peanut butter as well as cheese filling), treats and/or their food. Another combination I like to use is one that includes frozen yogurt, fruits and vegetables (usually something crunchy). With both of these concoctions I like to freeze the kongs, this makes everything stick together nicely and it also adds a level of difficulty. I usually freeze the kongs overnight to ensure it’s as frozen as possible but I think leaving it in the freezer for a good 5-6 hours would be fine. When I give my dogs the kongs they usually take a good 2-3 hours to get most if not all of what’s inside and that’s using my most avid chewer as an example.

Chew Bones

Another method I like to use which is very similar to the Kong method is using chew bones. These kinds of bones are the ones that come filled with bone marrow or some other sort of filling in the center that your dog can work out or you can find ones that are already empty that you can fill yourself. I use either one. If I buy one that comes pre-filled then I can hand it off to my dog and once she’s done with it I’ll refill myself. These types of bones aren’t as spacious as the Kong chews are so you don’t have very much space to work with so what I like to do is fit soft treats inside and push it as far down as I can making it more difficult to get out. If I want to make the chew more interesting then I’ll add some peanut butter along with the soft treats and then freeze that. These types of chews don’t last as long as the kongs, again because there isn’t a whole lot to dig out but they will keep your dog engaged and off your back!

Some of the kids keeping busy:

Barclay Barclay with his chew bone 

2015-01-27Ping Pong with his Kong

 

Best Dog Parks in Miami Beach

Lori Waters

Lori Waters

Animal Expert Extraordinaire! at The Litter Sitter, inc.
Lori Waters is the author and voice behind Thee Inside Poop as well as the owner and operator of The Litter Sitter, a local dog walking and pet sitting company in Miami Beach, FL. When she's not busy blogging and taking care of clients' pets you can find her running around with her german shepherd Zoey or having in-depth conversations with her two fur balls, Michi and Oakley!
Lori Waters

dogparksmiamibeach

If you’re a SoBe (that’s South Beach for those of you non-locals) local then you know the beach has a number of fantastic dog parks tucked in and around the area. Some of these parks have been around for years while others are relatively new but still pretty awesome! If you’re a local or just someone visiting the area for a time and you’re looking for some great dog parks to take your furry friend to then check out our top picks for Bark Parks!

South Pointe Park (Off-Leash)

This Bark Park is one of the few parks in the area that is off-leash and most if not all locals love this place! It’s conveniently located right next to the water, which is a huge plus if you have a water dog that enjoys going for a swim, and connects with a lengthly boardwalk that stretches all the way to the beach in one direction (the one with sand and water) and the marina in the other. So not only do you and your pup get to enjoy an hour or two at the park but once you’re done you can take a stroll on the boardwalk and check out all the boats, restaurants and say hi to all the passersby. This is a beautiful park with tons of beautiful stops along the way, great for taking selfies!

Washington Avenue Bark Park

There are actually two dog parks located in this one area but my favorite is the one located on the North East corner of Washington Ave. This park features a double gated entrance which allows pet parents to unleash their pups before letting them run in to play, a large fenced in area, benches, garbage disposal and poop bag stations as well as my personal favorite: a water fountain. This huge fountain kind of reminds me of the fountains seen at disney world. Where the rise up from the ground and create pictures as they flow up. These ones don’t create and pictures but the dogs absolutely love them! It’s a great way for them to stay hydrated as well as cool off on the hot summer days.

dogparksmiamibeach2

Flamingo Bark Park

Another personal favorite, Flamingo Bark Park features a double gated entrance, poop bag dispensers/garbage disposal and water fountains (although not as glamorous as the one previously mentioned) and also two enclosed areas: one for large dogs and the other for smaller dogs. Both areas are fairly large with enough space for all dogs to run around and play for hours! There are also a number of benches and trees for providing much needed shade. This park is also one of many other amenities this park area offers. There are also tennis courts, basketball courts, a soccer/baseball field, a tennis center, a kids playground and large sections of grass where locals enjoy laying out and hanging with friends and/or pups!

There are a number of parks located in the Miami Beach area as well as our very own dog beach but these happen to be our personal favorites here at The Litter Sitter – Dog Walking & Pet Care and where we enjoy taking our clients’ furry friends to run around at. If you’d love to take your pup to one of these amazing parks but just don’t have the time our dog walkers would love to take your pup for you!

Health Benefits of Coconut Oil For Pets

Lori Waters

Lori Waters

Animal Expert Extraordinaire! at The Litter Sitter, inc.
Lori Waters is the author and voice behind Thee Inside Poop as well as the owner and operator of The Litter Sitter, a local dog walking and pet sitting company in Miami Beach, FL. When she's not busy blogging and taking care of clients' pets you can find her running around with her german shepherd Zoey or having in-depth conversations with her two fur balls, Michi and Oakley!
Lori Waters

Health Benefits of Coconut Oil

This week I had a friend of mine ask me what product he could use to clear up his dogs dry nose and the first thing that popped into my head was COCONUT OIL! When I told him this, he asked: “Really? I don’t need to go to the store and buy some kind of product?” To which I replied: “You can if you want to but this is cheaper, natural and will probably do the same job as the other thing you’re going to end up buying.” He was pretty impressed and amazed at the fact that he could use this household item to treat his pups dry, itchy nose and that got me thinking I wonder how many other pet parents out there don’t know about the awesome benefits of using coconut oil for their pets!

So here we are, learning the basics of Coconut oil 🙂

What Is Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil otherwise known as a superfood is comprised of 90% saturated fat, which might be alarming to some people being that the average intake for fat is on average 20-30% but lucky for us, most of the saturated fats found in coconut oil are MCT’s (Medium Chain Triglycerides) which means they provide antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal properties (not bad for fat) among other things! Essentially you can consider the fats found in coconut oil to be one of the healthy fats kind of like avocados and almonds and should be of course taken in moderation for both our furry friends and ourselves!

Skin Benefits

One of the main reasons why I enjoy using coconut oil for my pets, aside from the fact that they love the way it tastes and I love the way it smells, is because it has so many benefits for their skin and coat, the most obvious being the soft and glossy coat you’ll soon notice on your pet after using this oil for a few weeks.

You can use coconut oil orally (by feeding 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds twice a day starting with 1/4 of the amount first and then working your way up so as not to bombard their digestive tract) or topically (literally applying to dry or itchy area) and treat skin issues such as:

  • Dry, itchy skin,
  • Dandruff
  • Flea Allergies
  • Contact Dermatitis
  • Eczema

It’s also great if you have stinky dogs (or cats) in that it helps deodorize their smell (think of it as pet deodorant) and you can even use it as a topical ointment for:

  • Cuts,
  • Scrapes,
  • Hot spots (my personal favorite)
  • Rashes (also another personal favorite)
  • Bites and stings

as this bad boy is amazing at promoting healing!

Digestion Benefits

Coconut oil is also great in aiding in digestion for pets which is something to keep in mind if you have a pet with constant GI issues, as well as nutrient absorption and as an added bonus it’s great for hairballs (in cats), bad breath and even coughing! My favorite bit is the hairballs and bad breath being that my cats have both… so unfortunate.

Other Benefits

I’m sure most people enjoy using coconut oil for it’s skin and coat benefits but if you use it orally you not only get the shiny and healthy coat but you’ll also be helping your pet in terms of:

  • Weight Loss
  • Increased energy
  • Arthritis
  • Diabetes management
  • Promoting healthy thyroid function

Great For Humans Too!

Using coconut oil for myself is how I found out about this superfood! I started using it for my dry and damaged hair and within a few weeks I noticed a ridiculous amount of moisture being harbored in my locks but prior to using it I learned that it also aids in:

  • Prevention of heart disease and high cholesterol
  • Skin and hair health
  • Promoting weight loss
  • Digestion
  • Regulating metabolism
  • Boosting immune system
  • Preventing diabetes
  • Dental and bone health

So if using this oil for yourself isn’t reason enough to pick this product up then you should definitely pick it up for your furry friend! It’s a win/win: they’ll love the taste and smell and you’ll be aiding in their health 🙂

How To Cope With Dogs Who Have Grass Allergies!

Lori Waters

Lori Waters

Animal Expert Extraordinaire! at The Litter Sitter, inc.
Lori Waters is the author and voice behind Thee Inside Poop as well as the owner and operator of The Litter Sitter, a local dog walking and pet sitting company in Miami Beach, FL. When she's not busy blogging and taking care of clients' pets you can find her running around with her german shepherd Zoey or having in-depth conversations with her two fur balls, Michi and Oakley!
Lori Waters

Grass

Who would’ve thought that a dog could be allergic to grass… I didn’t even know that was a thing until I found out that our dog was one of those pets. I say those pets because I’m the person who laughs at other people’s pets who have random oddities about them like the dog who is allergic to grains, or the cat who can only eat chicken as opposed to salmon because he’s allergic to fish! Yea those kinds of pets.

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