Category: Pets

The Ultimate Guide to Owning Saltwater Fish

saltwater fishOwning a fish tank is one thing, but fish owners interested in taking it up a notch should consider keeping saltwater fish.

Keeping a saltwater fish tank is a bigger challenge than freshwater, but the benefits are immeasurable.

For instance, saltwater tanks replicate actual ocean water and give access to some beautiful reefs and exotic tropical fish. With that said, fish owners will get back what they put into the aquarium — so it’s important to make some sound decisions.

Start by using the tips below in order to build the most attractive saltwater tanks and to keep fish that are healthy and long living.

Understand The Different Types of Saltwater Fish

Researching fish is the first step of setting up an exquisite saltwater fish tank.

Some popular types of saltwater fish include clownfish, blue devil damselfish, angelfish, and gramma. When looking up the different types of fish, it’s crucial to learn what food they eat, their stages of development, breeding information and other important info.

The different attributes that each species has will inform the best ways to take care of these fish. Using that information will strike the right balance in the tank chemistry.

Buy the Right Aquarium

When buying a saltwater fish tank, it’s important to start by choosing the right size. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to buy a tank that is slightly than the buyer thinks they need.

It’s important to leave room both for natural fish growth and to add new fish. A 50-gallon tank is a great aquarium to start with.

On top of buying the aquarium itself, fish owners will need to buy a quality heating mechanism, thermometer, and filters that are efficient and long lasting. This will keep the water clean and comfortable for the fish and will keep them alive.

Get the Accessories That Bring it To Life

A saltwater tank is every bit as much a lifestyle statement as it is a hobby. It adds life and pizazz to home interior in the same way that garden marquees add to the landscape.

Keeping a tank filled with exotic fish is a cool conversation starter any time company is over.

Because of this, many fish tank owners go above and beyond to add the most beautiful reefs, rocks, decorations and other fixtures.

Adding live plant life to saltwater tanks makes the fish more healthy and the tank more attractive. Some examples of live plants that are great for any saltwater aquarium include java moss, pygmy chain sword, anubias nana, and different types of ferns.

Keep the Aquarium Clean

Cleanliness is essential when keeping a saltwater tank. Saltwater leaves more deposits, so must be cleaned more frequently than freshwater tanks.

Always get rid of fish food that isn’t eaten, and swap out the water every week or so. Keep the filters clean and always maintain lighting in order to see when the tank is accumulating too much dirt, waste and algae.

Contemplate these points and start looking for some thrifty DIY ideas that will make the aquarium a beautiful centerpiece in any home.

Share Your Tips

Do you own saltwater fish? Maybe you have a specific type of saltwater fish that you enjoy breeding more than others. Let us know in the comments!

5 Good Reasons to Buy Pets for Kids

pets for kids It’s obvious that children love animals. From toys to clothing to movies, animals are everywhere!

Even more than animals in general, kids love their pets.

There’s a reason why veterinarian is always a top answer when kids are asked what they want to be when they grow up.

Getting pets for kids can benefit them in so many ways. In this article, we’re breaking down the top five reasons why.

5 Benefits of Pets For Kids

Pets teach kids valuable lessons and life skills. Plus, they just make them so happy. What’s cuter than kids and puppies together?

Here are the best of those lessons, life skills, and joys!

1. Companionship

It’s no secret that pets and their owners experience a special bond. This bond gives both parties a sense of companionship. This companionship can be particularly comforting for kids.

It’s been proven that pets help reduce stress levels, likely because of their non-judgmental affection.

Kids are comfortable in front of their pets, even when it comes to developing skills like reading.

Reading to pets can help kids feel more confident when reading aloud. It helps shelter pets feel less anxious too.

2. Socialization

Interacting with pets helps kids learn how to socialize with humans too.

Kids, especially infants and toddlers, often find a connection with pets that is much easier to navigate than the complicated social world of humans.

Studies show that kids with pets often develop higher levels of self-esteem. This is likely due to the sense of competency that results from successfully taking care of another being.

3. Responsibility

It is important for kids to learn the effects of their actions, specifically the importance of responsibility.

Assigning a child with the responsibility of caring for their pet gives them the appreciation that they won’t get from completing other chores: the animal’s love.

The fun aspects, like play time and meal time, are great for young kids to take on. As they get older, it’s also good for a kid to learn the less fun responsibilities, like cleaning up after the pet. This helps to teach them to put in the work for the things they love in life.

4. Nurturing

Having to remember to care for another living being is a great lesson for a child’s developing mind and developing ego.

Kids who learn to instinctually care for a pet at a young age have a leg up in developing their sense of empathy.

Plus, the practice of being a caregiver builds instincts that we keep for a lifetime.

5. Family Bond

A pet that the whole family cares for can help strengthen the bond between family members.

Families grow closer with the shared experiences centered around the pet.

Even if a pet isn’t conducive to your lifestyle, animal centered activities can still help the family bond.

For example, a trip to an Interactive Aquarium can give the whole family new shared experiences outside of the day-to-day activities of school and work.

There You Have It!

Pets for kids can be a great developmental tool and a great way to make them happy all in one.

For more articles on kids and parenting, click here.

5 Crucial Products Your Frisky Feline Needs to Have

cat productsCatnip and Cat Condo not cutting it anymore?

Don’t fret, Fearless Feline-Mom. We’ve scoured the Internet for you to find some of the coolest, newest kitty products for your four-legged friend. Think of them as the “new essentials” for your furry companion.

And now, after tirelessly whittling down the list to its cat necessities, we present the 5 crucial products all cat-moms and cat-dads need to have. Be sure to look for online coupons before you buy them!

1) Kitty Products For the Cat Abroad

We all have to travel. That means we all have to make the decision: Do I bring my cat with me or hire a sitter?

For those of you who like to bring your cats along for the ride, or those who have just moved into a new place, we’d like to share “Feliway”.

Feliway contains no drugs or sedatives. Instead, it simulates a “natural feline facial pheromone.” This enables cats to feel a sense of security.

This product is proven to significantly reduce urination incidents, as well as other territorial or anxiety-driven behaviors.

2) For the Cat with an Itch that Won’t Quit

Responsible pet owners know the importance of applying flea and other pest-shielding medications.

Unfortunately, fleas are growing immunities to traditional methods. This often leaves owners at a loss.

That’s where Pet-Lok comes to the rescue. This cat flea medicine is different from other brands, because it is comprehensive.

The result is a family of products that not only prevents fleas and other pests from ever biting, but also treats cats if they get fleas. It also has products for inside the home and out in the backyard. This creates a barrier far beyond your pet.

3) For the Cat with a Sneezy Parent

We examined dozens of air purifiers, and we’ve found one that’s quite impressive.

Called Molekule, this purification system is different in that it breaks down irritants at the molecular level. So, it leaves behind pure air that is free from any chemicals.

Other air purifiers have filtration systems, which help to trap pollutants. This one is different — it doesn’t filter the air, it fundamentally changes it.

4) For the Cat with an Appetite

The feeding frenzy may be familiar to you. You put a bowl of food down and before you know it the food is gone.

The brand “Catit” has a variety of nifty products, and the “Senses 2.0 Digger” is a great solution.

It requires dexterity and simulates what it’s like for your cat to hunt for food. Best of all, it helps your cat to slow down and enjoy its meal.

5) For the Cat who Has Everything

Okay, Big Spender, this one’s for you. Go Pet Club has created a series of huge “Cat Trees” and condos.

This is not your momma’s scratching post.

These have ladders, tunnels, swings, plants, and rope bridges.

Kitty Products For Everyone Else

We go to incredible lengths for our furry companions. We love them, and they love us back.

These five products will never replace the love and kindness that pet owners display every single day. Check out our site to ensure you get the best deals on them.

Nevertheless, they’re sure to make for one happy feline.

5 Money Saving Tips All Pet Owners Need to Know

petPet ownership can be pricey. One study found that a dog can cost over $40,000 over its lifetime.

But having a pet doesn’t have to break the bank. You can still give your four-legged friend the care they need while keeping costs down. We’ve got five money-saving tips that will keep both your pet and your wallet happy.

1. Buy Food in (Realistic) Bulk

It’s no surprise that buying pet food in bulk can lower the costs. You’ll pay less per pound by buying a bigger bag, especially with some online retailers.

But these savings are no good if the food goes bad!

Before getting sucked into the idea of bulk savings, think realistically about how much your pet eats. The amount a husky eats will be drastically different than a pug.

Measure out your pet’s daily intake and compare that to the food’s best before date. This way, you can get the best bulk discounts without wasting food (any money).

2. Make Your Own Pet Toys

Have you shelled out for store-bought toys only to see that your cat is more fascinated by a crumpled up tin foil ball?

While you may prefer the look of toys from the pet store, your pets aren’t so picky. There are tons of online tutorials that let you get crafty with household materials.

Plus, you can make it a family event and keep both your kids and pets entertained with the same craft!

3. Be Pro-active

Think of ways that you can avoid future problems and expenses by preparing now. For example, if you drive with your dog in the back seat, get a seat cover.

The seat cover itself isn’t that expensive, but it can save you a ton down the road. If your dog has an unfortunate accident, the cover will ensure you don’t have to pay for a full upholstery cleaning.

This also means preventative care for possible medical problems. Getting dental treats — or better, brushing their teeth — keeps your pets healthy and helps avoid expensive medical bills. Flea and tick medication for dogs who go outdoors can help prevent insect-borne diseases.

4. Don’t Pay for a Kennel

Do you have neighbors or friends with pets? Instead of paying for costly care for your furry friend every time you go out of town, consider making a pet-care agreement.

You agree to take care of your friends’ pets when they’re on vacation, and they’ll do the same for you. Just make sure to keep expectations fair and reasonable for both sides.

5. Brush Up on Grooming

Grooming your pet is definitely something you can do at home. Invest in a good brush and clippers and find some breed-specific grooming tutorials online.

If you’re not comfortable doing all the grooming, you can at least do some maintenance at home to lengthen the time between trips to the pet store.

Wrapping Up

Your pets should always be a source of love and joy, not financial stress. With these easy tips, you can save a ton on pet care without sacrificing their care.

How do you save money on your pet care? Let us know what tips we missed in the replies!

What’s the Right Organic Dog Food for Your Pup?

organic dog foodAre you trying to find a dog food that fits your budget and that offers nutritional value for your pet?

Walking down the grocery aisle to find the perfect dog food can be an overwhelming and confusing task. Brands constantly throw around words like “holistic,” “organic,” and “all-natural,” to entice you to buy. But what do these words really even mean?

If you are considering switching to an organic dog food, don’t just grab the first bag you see off the shelf. First, you need to learn what organic really means before you buy.

Here’s everything you need to know:

What Does Organic Mean?

Organic is a word that gets thrown around a lot. However, most people don’t even know what it means. 

For a dog food to be considered organic, it must comply with all the same USDA regulations human food manufacturers need to.

When a food qualifies as organic, it means it’s been raised pesticide-free for at least three years. Organic livestock must be given organic feed and access to the outdoors.

This can differ greatly from foods that are labeled as “natural” or “holistic.” Foods with this label may not have undergone chemical processes. However, their ingredients are not necessarily organic.

How Can I Tell If It’s Organic?

Organic foods will contain the USDA seal on the front. Typically, the color of the seal is black and white.

In order to receive the USDA seal of approval, the dog food must contain 95 percent organic ingredients. Dog foods that are labeled “100 percent organic” or simply “Organic” must also meet this 95 percent requirement.

Dog foods with the label “Made With Organic Ingredients” must contain at least 70 percent organic ingredients.

If you are going for 100 percent organic, it is important to read the labels carefully.

Why Buy Organic?

Dog foods that aren’t organic often contain a number of suspect ingredients. When you buy organic dog food, you can rest easy knowing that all the ingredients are natural and additive-free.

Here are some benefits to buying organic dog food:

  • Improved quality of life
  • Stronger immune system
  • Fewer digestive disorders
  • Reduction in skin ailments
  • Allergy reduction
  • Healthier coat

What are Some Trusted Brands?

If you are serious about making the switch to organic dog food, it may help to start with a few recommendations. The ones listed below are certified-organic and are available in most large pet food stores.

Castor & Pollux Organix

This company has won numerous awards since its founding in 2003. It offers an extensive line of premium-quality organic dog foods. All food is produced in the United States with organic chicken being their number one ingredient.

Natura Karma

Natura Karma uses extremely gently cooking procedures to ensure the quality of the ingredients isn’t compromised. They use 95 percent organic ingredients with chicken also being their number one ingredient.

Natural Planet

A family-owned pet manufacturer, Natural Planet offers a wide range of products that includes an organic line. Chicken, pumpkin, and brown rice are some of the main ingredients they use in their organic line. The brand is Oregon Tilth certified, which makes it at least 70% organic.

Of course, depending on your dog’s breed and size, it is important to take a look at more than one dog food buying guide. 

Organic Dog Food:  Wrap Up

Buying the right organic food can seriously make a difference in your pet’s life. So we hope this article helps you during your next trip to the pet food store.

Did we forget your favorite organic dog food? Let us know in the comments!

5 DIY Ways to Save A Trip to the Groomer

groomer

When you own a dog, you’ll do anything to make sure that your furry friend is comfortable and happy. Trips to the vet and even the pet supply store are needed, and even new foods or dog probiotics aren’t out the question. but there’s one expense you should be able to cut out of your budget.

Getting Rid Of the Groomer

Dog grooming has become an essential for some people, but when you get the bill at the end of the session you may regret your choice. On average it can cost $65 to get your dog fully groomed, and that cost can add up after awhile.

Let’s face it you’re going to have to make multiple trips to the groomer to keep your dogs clean. It would be much cheaper for you to learn some basic grooming tips, so you can care for your dog at home. Once you find the right schedule, you’ll easily be able to settle into a grooming routine for your dog.

Are you ready to have a clean and happy pooch without breaking the bank? If you follow these tips your fellow pet lovers are going to be asking you what your grooming secret is!

Use Flea Combs For Long Hair Breeds

Flea combs have very fine and close together teeth so they can easily pick out fleas and their eggs. They’re great for pest maintenance, but they can also help when you groom longer haired breeds.

Schnauzers, Shih Tzus, and most doodles have long sensitive hair on their face. A flea comb can be easily used to detangle and style their hair without causing discomfort. It can also help keep down the amount of shedded hair in your carpets.

Trim The Paw Hair

Do you feel like your dog is always tracking in dirt from the outside? Your dog may not be messy, their paw hair could be getting in the way.

Paws are important for dogs, and they can easily be neglected when they’re being groomed. When you’re grooming your dog, make sure you trim the hair around their paw pads. This can help prevent tracking in dirt and mud, and could even help give your dog more traction on slippery floors.

Burn Off Energy

Do you dread the idea of grooming your dog since you can’t imagine keeping them still? If you have a high energy dog, taking them to the park before a grooming session can help.

A lot of dogs don’t actually mind the groomer or the grooming itself, they just don’t like having to be still! Get your dog some exercise before you groom and you’ll be happy.

Don’t Forget Nails

When most people think about dog grooming they think about fur, but their nails need maintenance too. Overgrown nails could hurt their paws and will just be a nuisance to them.

Carefully trim their claws when you’re grooming them to help protect their paws. Also be sure to use dog nail clippers and not clippers for humans.

Rinse Twice

Shampoos and products can be great for keeping your dog’s coat shiny and clean, but residue from them can irritate your dog’s skin. Leftover product can cause dryness, flakes, or even itchiness. That’s why it’s important to rinse more than once after your shampoo.

Did we miss your favorite DIY grooming tip? Tell our readers about it in our comments section!

The Best Dog Probiotics On The Market

best dog probiotics on the marketEvery dog owner knows that a dog’s distress is your distress.

Sometimes that’s a matter of empathy, sometimes it’s a case of cleaning up messes!

The good news is that probiotics can overhaul your dog’s digestive health, sorting out everything from gastrointestinal issues to skin complaints.

With so much choice out there, it can be hard to find the best dog probiotics. Luckily, we’ve picked a few favorites to help you decide.

Purina Fortiflora

This is a well-known brand recommended by a lot of veterinarians. Research has shown that this probiotic can boost the immune system and help a dog’s digestive health. It contains a proprietary bacteria, so when choosing this product you’re getting something that isn’t available elsewhere.

Purina Fortiflora is safe for lactating and pregnant dogs. It’s also a favorite with fussy eaters everywhere. Purina also guarantees a viable bacteria culture.

The active bacteria in the probiotic is Enterococcus faecium SF68, but it also packs a dose of vitamins, yeast, and minerals.

Fortiflora is administered as a daily oral supplement, so it can be mixed into your dog’s usual food. Owners usually see an improvement within as little as seven days.

VetriScience Vetri Mega Probiotic

VetriScience is a brand with a strong reputation behind them. That’s reassuring for anyone worried about what they’re feeding their dog.

This probiotic is great value for money, weighing in at just $20 for sixty chews.

This brand is shown to resolve digestive issues such as gas and loose stools in both large and small dogs.

Nine types of bacteria make up this probiotic, including Enterococcus faecium and Lactobacillus fermentum.

VetriScience’s probiotic takes the form of a chew, so you can give it as a treat to your dog. Most dogs can’t tell their medicinal, though, so they’ll wolf them down!

Nutramax Proviable DC

Nutramax’s probiotic is a very flexible dog probiotic. It comes in capsule form but is also available as a paste for short-time use. In capsule form, you can either administer the capsule directly or open it to sprinkle over food.

Nutramax boasts seven strains of good bacteria, including the ever-popular Enterococcus faecium along with Bifidobacterium bifidum and Lactobacillus casei – which you may recognize as the “l. casei” of Yakult-style human probiotics.

Nutramax is especially potent at treating dogs with diarrhea complaints. Owners may notice improvements within as little as 24 hours.

Bene-Bac Plus Probiotic Pet Gel

Bene-Bac has been around for a while, so its long tenure might put a cautious pet owner’s mind at ease.

Bene-Bac advertises itself as crowding out harmful bacteria to boost your dog’s immune system. It claims to promote a healthy appetite and a dose of energy.

This product allows fine control over dosage. It comes with a 1 gram travel tube to administer the gel, so it’s great for owners who spend a lot of time on the move. As a gel, it can be mixed in with your dog’s food, or given with a treat.

With seven active cultures of bacteria, Bene-Bac is another source of l. casei.

Healthy Happy Dogs

Probiotics are backed by veterinarians and provide a great benefit for your dog, so we hope we’ve helped narrow down the choices you can start to benefit today!

Be sure to follow our blog for more hints and tips on how to live a happy and healthy life!