Vol. 3 #1 | March 2020
Georgina B loomberg C 2 A L 2 D A
PIANO MAN BILLY JOEL Sings A Tune For Rescue Animals
World Dog Expo Fun For The Family
Best Carry Bags For Near & Far
New Gadgets For All Pets
Whatâ€™s New In Pet-Friendly Florida
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PET SPOTLIGHT 5 10 11 12 13 14 15
Georgina Bloomberg: Equestrian Champ. Animal Lover Sir Patrick Stewart: Star Trek Actor and his Pit Bull Makenzie Moss: Star of The Unicorn and Her Dogs Carrie Schroeder: Nickelodeon’s I Am Frankie’s Dr. Mom John Hunter Nemechek: Racing Cars and Loving Dogs Rachel Grant: 007 Assassin Now Animal Advocate Rachel Smith: Miss USA Stays True To Her Heart
PET FASHION 16 The Best Travel Bags For Your Dog 18 Must Have Travel Accessories for Cats
PET WELLNESS 20 Helping Dogs Live A Long and Healthy Life 21 How Pets Help Us Stay Healthy 22 No Gut, No Glory - How Probiotics Work
PET LIFESTYLES 23 24 26 28
Inside Look at The World Dog Expo What’s New in Pet Friendly Florida Rock & Rawhide Tips For Indoor Fun with Your Dog Air Travel With Your Cat
PET TECH 30 New Gadgets For All Pets
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32 Billy Joel Sings A Tune for Pet Rescue 34 Protecting Exotic Animals in Costa Rica 36 Saving Australia’s Wildlife
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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring… For Georgina Bloomberg our cover story, just loving animals was not enough. She needed to make a difference on every level, large - as in working with exceptional organizations like the Humane Society of the United States and small - rescuing a pigeon who decamped New York City for the suburbs and decided her North Salem farm was the place to roost. Warm, kind, dedicated, this world class equestrian will always be a winner! Celebrities who grace our pages include none other than Star Trek’s venerable Captain Picard. In the recordbreaking streaming series new on CBS All Access, Sir Patrick Stewart’s No. 1 is a Pit Bull, the breed he strives to rescue and support in every way. Sir Patrick leads the way when it comes to changing the fate of these muchmaligned dogs. We all want our pets to live long and healthy lives. From the benefits of probiotics to healthy treats and wellness innovations - and when homemade meals are right for your dog - we asked the experts to weigh in. Spring break is upon us. For snowbirds heading South we’ve got the scoop on pet friendly Florida resorts. Traveling with Fido? Transporting Fifi? We’re sharing not only the most practical pet carry cases around but the chicest ones too. We want to be sure your pet won’t be embarrassed to be seen with you. Rescue is top of mind the world over especially with crises like the bushfires in Australia bringing species like the Koala to the brink of extinction. We take a look at what’s happening near and far with a close up also on The Toucan Rescue Ranch in Costa Rica, a sanctuary that is more than an extraordinary home for our fine feathered friends. Be an armchair adventurer this issue. Travel with us as we invite you to explore new frontiers and old favorites. Bon Voyage!
Editor in Chief firstname.lastname@example.org
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Vol. 3 #1 | March 2020 President / Publisher BILL MASON Editor in Chief Lori Simmons Zelenko
Photography Geoff Tischman Annie Watt
Senior Editor Melissa Clark
Videographer David Katzive
Editors at Large Arielle Bennett Kate Benjamin Dr. Eric Dougherty Dr. Brett Shorenstein DVM Beth Stern Art Director Eric Duncan Marketing Coordinator Judith Moskowitz
Features Beth A. Freely Aaron Greenbaum Dara Hall Samuel Hinke Eileen Jacobson Marie K. Johnston KC Jones Michael LaChance Crystal C. Long Sherel Purcell Sebastian Rubino Zoe Zorka
Executive Vice President of Sales LYLE SELTZER Sales Bill Mason Sr. - Director of New Business Development Brett Caldwell - Director of Integrated Sales and Marketing Director of Operations Kurt Nesheim Internet Presence Scott Cuollo, Richard Austin Magazine Distribution The Garrido Group New York Sales Office (646) 259-2651
Editorial/Sales Fax (212) 202-4888
For subscriptions, address changes or back issues, call: (646) 259-2651 petlifestylesmagazine.com Facebook: /petlifestylesmag Twitter: @petlifestylesny Instagram: @petlifestylesmag All rights reserved. Reproduction of any material from this issue is expressly forbidden without permission of the publisher. Printed in the USA. Pet Lifestyles Magazine is published 4 times annually. © 2018 Pet Lifestyles Magazine
Editor in Chief Lori Zelenko with her dogs Bikini and Annabelle. ©Geoff Tischman www.tischmanpets.com
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Cover Photo Credit: MARCH 2020
Georgina Bloomberg with Wilbur, her rescue pig and Petey, the Goat she saved and restored to good heath after being hit by a car. Two of her beloved animals in the menagerie at her Florida home. ©AnnieWatt.com
GEORGINA BLOOMBERG FROM ANIMAL LOVER TO ANIMAL ACTIVIST By Lori Zelenko
he’s been known to leave a glittering Manhattan gala in the back seat of a cop car, rushing to the aid of an animal in need. You can find her in Florida, not chilling by the pool, but on her knees, nose to nose with her black and white pig, Wilbur. Of course, she’s a champion equestrian winning (and losing) competitions the world over but what does she love to do most? Nurture her “pack,” five dogs of her own - Rocky, Mona, Chopper, Bingo and Arnie, a few fosters, a handful of retired horses including a former NYC Carriage Horse as well as her own (13 in total), two mules, two barn cats, two cows, a rooster, a goat, and even a pigeon who decided to come join the menagerie and let’s not forget, Wilbur, the pig with a face only a mother could love. All her animals are rescues and they all have a story to tell; the dogs came from situations that would break your heart; the pig found his forever home after Hurricane Sandy; the rooster and the pigeon simply arrived and stayed (they intuitively knew her home offered sanctuary); and the goat, well, he was just about road kill but thanks to advances in reconstructive surgery he’s doing just fine. MARCH MARCH 2020 2020 PET PETLIFESTYLES LIFESTYLESMAGAZINE MAGAZINE|| 5
Being a world class equestrian, Georgina competes constantly, traveling to shows all over the world but as she ponders the future, she is thinking that there will be a time to be involved the sport that allows her to slow down and expand her family ÂŠJump Media
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WHAT FULFILLS HER
You hear the name Georgina Bloomberg and what do you think? She is committed to the glamorous life? After all, her pictures do grace the society pages. Does it surprise you to learn that what illuminates her life is not the glare of the paparazzi flashbulbs but her passion for helping animals, more often than not caring for a senior, abandoned four-legged creature often with special needs. Though fundraising galas may be a part of her life, rescuing, changing the lives of animals in desperate straits genuinely fulfills her. Kind, patient, lovely, this 37-year-old single mom calls herself an “awkward nerd,” although her natural grace and gentle manner belie the moniker. Georgina - or George as she is known to her good buddies - relishes her down time, after all being a world class equestrian is consuming. She admits with quiet humor to a secret fondness for reality TV (Below Deck, Real Housewives - any of them, and Vanderpump Rules are her favorites). Treasuring nights at home, she makes dinner for her 7-year-old son - and yes, she cooks for her pets too. What’s on the menu? Never meat. Pescatarian is her choice. Her son Jasper makes her so proud when he explains to others that he doesn’t eat meat - and he believes in rescuing animals. “Being an animal lover,” she says about her beautiful boy who takes after her, radiating compassion from the inside out, “is his choice. But respecting animals and treating them well is non-negotiable in my house. He was taught right from the beginning how to take care of them, the importance of adoption and how to behave around animals.” Jasper does enjoy going to the barn and riding but there’s no pressure for him to even start thinking about competing. He is there to do nothing more than have fun.
HOW SHE MAKES A DIFFERENCE
Georgina was born an animal lover: “I was always surrounded by animals. I was always drawn to them and they made me happy. It’s unconditional love - a love you are born with and don’t find anywhere else.” Even though she loved animals with all her heart she realized that loving them just wasn’t enough, she had to get out there and fight to make a difference for them. Actions, she realized after a conversation with Dan Abrams, Chief Legal Affairs Anchor for ABC News, would speak louder than words. She is proud to say she became an animal activist; a dedicated force for helping to change the present and the future of animals all over the world. She serves on the board of the Humane Society of the United States and chairs a committee for this acclaimed organization called Humane Generation, a diverse group of inspiring young people whom, she says “will make the world a better place in so many ways.” It is important to her to be part of an organization that does so much for so many - from lobbying politicians to saving dogs in puppy mills, she wants us to grasp that “HSUS does far more for animals than people may understand. They are making real changes, not just putting a band-aid on situations but getting to the root of the problem and making a difference that isn’t simply for the moment.” Caring for animals is a lifelong passion for Georgina Bloomberg, and a commitment that’s shared by her dad, former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a current presidential candidate. They have an interesting tradeoff, she explains. He impresses upon her the importance of protecting the environment, and she educates her father about animal rights. In fact, he has four dogs he’s rescued thanks to her influence. His beliefs as a candidate may not be precisely hers, but there is communication and understanding nonetheless - and a conscientious effort to shield her son from any negative fallout. Presidential campaigns can get vicious.
Georgina was 23-years-old when she began her own endeavor to help young women keep riding, The Rider’s Closet. Coming from a child of privilege, the initiative to prevent young riders from dropping out of the sport when equipment or clothing costs become prohibitive reflects Georgina’s sensitivity to those who - two or four legged - need a boost. The endeavor begun during college years but has grown tremendously since. “I would love to expand The Rider’s Closet to make this sport more accessible and affordable to riders in more ways than just providing them with clothing and equipment at no cost,” Georgina would be grateful if these long term goals were understood. MARCH 2020
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Georgina’s son Jasper is now seven years old, he makes her proud when he tells people he does not eat meat and he rescues animals. He is loving and respectful of all animals, values he’s learned from his caring mom. ©AnnieWatt.com
Georgina has also chosen to give back through her insights and advice in a series of young adult novels based on life on the equestrian circuit. The back story here, “I was approached to write a series of young adult novels. At first, I had no interest. But I thought about it for awhile and it seemed to me, I never had the opportunity to write about something I loved so much and knew so much about. I grew up on the horse show circuit. I knew it so well that writing about it came easily and the process was actually fun!” Georgina Bloomberg’s series of young adult novels is available on amazon.com.
WHERE SHE’S GOING
Riding for Georgina began at age four, her first competition was at age six. Her mother who had ridden horses her whole life in England, encouraged her to ride as a child. It was a scary process at first, Georgina acknowledges, she speaks of being “terrified,” but “being too stubborn to stop or admit that I was afraid.” Her takeaway despite the fearsome situation? “I remember falling in love with the feeling of competing. The first time I won a class was more than a year later and after a lot of hard work, but that moment has stayed with me, I have never felt more satisfied and proud of doing anything.” Though blue ribbons and championship cups may be integral to Georgina’s life, one she splits between her farm in North Salem, NY and her home in Florida, near Wellington, the focal point of world class equestrian competition during the winter months, the grueling schedule and intensity of the sport is not one she considers living forever. She has come back from terrible injuries - broken back - twice and yet she persevered, “my injuries,” she says, “have made me stronger, 8 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
not only mentally but physically in many ways. I have learned how strong I am and how much I can rise above something by healing and then overcoming my fears.” But with one small child centering her life, she looks to the future to “eventually slow down and concentrate on other things and expand my family.” Don’t mistake thoughts of retiring for a lack of commitment to the equestrian career at hand, “I love what I do and the rush of show jumping. But I don’t want to continue the sport through my 40s. It is a tough sport on your body and your life.” She will, she says, always be involved in riding in some way. I have put a lot of myself and a lot of time into this sport, when the time comes to move on and be involved in a way that is not actually competing, I think I will know and accept it.”
WINNING VS. LOSING
“My favorite show is the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Show - next up in May 2020 - the farm is right down the street from where I live now and where I grew up riding. All my best memories are from growing up here while me and my friends learned to ride.” What does Georgina want the next generation of young riders to remember? “Losing is a big part of winning. Every rider in the world is going to lose more classes than they win, and learning to be a good loser in this sport is very important. It means you don’t accept losing or don’t try to win, but you roll with the punches and learn something from each class you don’t win. You also have to let yourself be happy and celebrate the wins since they are going to be rarer than your losses!” No matter what show she wins or loses as a champion equestrian, Georgina is always going to be a winner in our book as she heads to the finish keeping an eye out for how she can make a difference for animals, the ones present among us and the ones she foresees will need our help tomorrow and the day after. This animal lover takes a powerful and active role in protecting not only the four legged best friends who share her home, but all those in need today, tomorrow and the next day. •
SIR PATRICK STEWART: PREPARING PIT BULLS FOR LOVE By Melissa Clark
eize the time… Live now! Make now always the most precious time. Now will never come again,” he says wisely, his calm British accent giving weight to the words of his most famous character, a kinder, gentler leader beloved by his crew on the USS Enterprise D (and E), worshipped by Trekkies the world over and trusted by Pit Bulls as the champion of this much-maligned dog. He is Captain Jean-Luc Picard on Star Trek returning now in a new series streaming on CBS All Access (and breaking streaming records as we speak.) So who’s his No. 1? A Pit Bull, the breed this greatly acclaimed actor can’t live without. Alongside his singer/songwriter wife, Sunny Ozell, this duo belts out tunes that may appeal only to animal lovers - or possibly the most die-hard Star Trek fans - who knew Picard could sing? The tune they’re touting though isn’t a pop hit but rather a mantra, be kind to Pitties. The couple partnered with Wags and Walks Adoption Center (wagsandwalks.org), located in Los Angeles, California to help raise money and awareness for shelter dogs, often breeds determined (unfairly sometimes) to be “difficult.” Their affection for animals, particularly Pit Bulls, knows no bounds, but due to their busy schedule they are currently only able to foster dogs. Stewart told Pet Lifestyles, “Letting them go to their forever homes is bittersweet, but we know in our hearts that we provided them with such a good base of what it’s like to be with people who truly love them and provide the comfort and safety that they need.”
Sir Patrick Stewart and his wife, Sunny Ozell, champions of Pit Bulls, a much-maligned breed.
Safety is what these dogs require most; Pit Bulls are misrepresented as dangerous, rough, and violent. However, Stewart calls them the “sweetest, empathetic, and loving creatures” one can ever come in contact with. After all, they were once known as the Nanny Dog, protecting children, and watching out for families. Stewart and his wife have fostered four Pit Bulls so far, Ginger (who is an internet sensation), Ella, Emma, and Lenny. Unfortunately, Lenny perished from a myriad of health complications that his body just could not overcome. The Stewarts were there to help him through his transition, emotionally they speak of his last moments, “We kissed his big gorgeous mocha noggin, scratched softly behind his ears, and stroked his velvet snoot. We told him over and over again, how loved he was as we held his paws.” Losing Lenny was such a life-changing experience for them that they chose to partner with Wags and Walks, raising awareness of dogfighting between Pit Bulls, and matching donations at annual fundraisers. Taking the popular hashtag on social media “giving Tuesday” seriously, and sadly noting that the day Lenny’s passed happened to fall on a Tuesday, the couple decided to match donations up to $10,000. to pay tribute to sweet Lenny. More than twentyfive thousand dollars in donations came pouring in. Founder and Chief Animal Lover at Wags and Walks, Lesley Brogs, speaks of the relationship, “From the moment we were fortunate to meet Sir Patrick Stewart; we were blown away by his passionate and genuine love for Pit Bulls. We are so appreciative to have him as our Ambassador! When he has helped with fundraisers via promotion and offered to match donations on his platforms, sharing such important information regarding dogs in need makes an incredible impact.” Indeed, it does! Since its launch in 2011, Wags and Walks has incorporated more and more rescue dogs from high kill shelters. As a result, this rescue group has been able to evolve their mission from sparing the life of one dog a week to twenty-five a week. “On average, we saved nearly one thousand dogs in 2019, and nine hundred fifty of them found their forever homes,” explains Brogs who like the iconic Picard makes now the most precious time. • 10 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
Sir Patrick Stewart with Lenny, a dog close to his heart who passed away from neglect. Lenny inspired Sir Patrick to help the LA rescue group, Wags and Walks with a multitude of efforts.
MAKENZIE MOSS STAR OF CBS-TV’S THE UNICORN AND HER DOGS PICKLES, LAMBCHOP AND TWINKIE By Marie K Johnston
akenzie Moss, teenage star of TV’s “The Unicorn” on CBS, admits she has “love[d] to hang out with cute puppy dogs” for as long as she can remember. “I’ve always been responsible... I took care of my dogs from a young age,” she says. “It bothers me when people ignore their dogs, leave them in the laundry room or outside. I give my [three] dogs the love they deserve — and more!” Makenzie Moss ABOUT PICKLES CBS Star of The Unicorn Makenzie was just four years old when she got Pickles, a full-bred Pomeranian who will turn nine in May. However, life for Pickles hasn’t always been a walk in the park—when Pickles was five years old and recovering from knee surgery, the vet diagnosed her with hip dysplasia after her hips popped out of their sockets. She needed hip surgery but couldn’t get it because, as it turned out, she was diagnosed with Cushing’s disease, her body doesn’t produce enough collagen for her to heal properly, “so Pickles is handicapped,” said Makenzie, “but she’s not in any pain. She can walk with help, she rolls around in her stroller, it’s an actual baby stroller. Dog strollers are made for paralyzed dogs, so we just put her in a real baby stroller and she loves it, she’s a very happy dog,” said Makenzie.
Lambchop, Makenzie’s second dog, is a 4 year old who is ½ Yorkie, ½ Maltese, with an adorable Teddy Bear face and black, white, gray and tan fur. Lambchop has been known to try and get in Pickles’ stroller! “Lambchop is the smartest dog of the three; she understands ‘Do you want to go outside?’ She actually just ran to the backdoor when I said that,” said Makenzie who has even taught Lambchop some tricks: she can fist bump, sit and lay down.
TWINKIE THE LIVING TOY Twinkie, Makenzie’s third dog, is 3, a full-bred Pomeranian who “is like a talking, living toy, like a little dollface” that Makenzie ended up meeting on a movie set. Twinkie was too small for her breeder to turn into a show dog, since her tail would stick up, and Makenzie just loved her so they wound up taking her home with them.
FEATURING MAKENZIE Makenzie’s first feature film role with a canine co-star was the “Pup Star” movie series. She starred in one “Pup Star” movie a year from the time she was eight until she was 12. “There were actually two dogs who played ‘Tiny,’” said Makenzie, “they grew up, got married and had babies’ in the movie series,” which can be seen today on Netflix and Disney-Go.
“Twinkie is my little sidekick. I [like to] bring her to Canada [for my There are two dogs with big roles on “The Unicorn,” the CBS movie shoots], she’s the easiest of my dogs to care for.” TV show in which Makenzie currently stars. “The Unicorn” is the story of a widowed man with two daughters who suddenly becomes a hot commodity in the dating world. Makenzie plays Natalie, the younger daughter. “[We have] one large mutt named Linda and one small mutt named Joyce,” Makenzie said. “Joyce kind of looks like Lambchop. Linda and Joyce won the CW Dog Honors Award, a big gold fire hydrant, from Mario Lopez that [I recently accepted for them]. So proud of them, they won ‘Best Dogs in TV’.”
Makenzie Moss loving her three pups
But, Makenzie admitted she doesn’t have a favorite dog amongst her three. “I love having three dogs,” she said, “They all get along well, they’re friends. The most important thing my dogs have taught me is loyalty. They are so loyal to me that I want to be loyal to them. I’ve learned to be calm around them, centered, they taught me to slow down...There wouldn’t be as much fun in life without them because they love to go on adventures with me— they get so excited when I come home that they can’t breathe!” she said. • MARCH 2020
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CARRIE SCHROEDER: SINGER, DANCER, ACTOR AND DOG MOM TO DUSTY By Samuel Hinke
ou may recognize Carrie Schroeder from her role as Doctor Mom on the hit Nickelodeon TV show “I Am Frankie”, but did you know she also performs with the Boston Pops Symphony Orchestra? And she volunteers at a German shepherd rescue? Bet you’re not familiar with her work on stage with animals? Carrie Schroeder began her career on stage as a “triple threat”; singer, dancer, and actor. An unfortunate accident during part of her tour in Singapore put an abrupt end to her dancing career. But that didn’t stop her from pursuing her dreams. Carrie shifted her focus towards being on screen vs. on stage, and her efforts paid off, earning her standout role as Doctor Mom on “I Am Frankie.” Perhaps some of her success can be attributed to her very talented costars including a rabbit who worked with her in her stage play debut as Mary in “The Secret Garden”, “Pretty sure it was the rabbit’s first gig, but he managed to relax into it and we found our groove,” she recalls joyfully. More recently she’s been seen in commercials acting with a camera shy Australian Shepherd and horses with big personalities.
Carrie Schroeder and Dusty
Carrie Schroeder grew up with two German Shepherds. One was her guardian, so to speak, who watched over her in her bassinet. As the story goes; when she stirred in her sleep “George” would trot down the hall to wake up mom and dad. Upon moving to LA she immediately went to a rescue to find a new German Shepard to join her family. “Dee” immediately stood out as a dog with a “beautiful soul.” Unfortunately Dee had a congenital liver defect, and passed shortly after being adopted. Schroeder did not give up on her love for animals, choosing to foster. Schroeder would soon fall in love with a feisty little pup with a tough spirit who would prove inspirational; Dusty. After watching her overcome parvo, she knew this was the German Shepard for her: “That was a fighting spirit I knew I wanted in my life. That was Dusty.
Carrie Schroeder and her beloved Dusty
Interestingly enough, Schroeder reveals, Dusty isn’t really motivated by food, but she will do anything for the ball: “She LOVES it. And she has no ‘off ’ switch. She will play ball until she collapses if I let her.” Most dogs love the park, but it seems Dusty is obsessed. Speaking of obsession, we have to talk about the donut. It’s squeaky, it’s plush, and it’s shaped like, well, a donut. That’s it. That’s all there is to it, and yet, it’s the only toy to have lasted more than 20 minutes in Dusty’s paws. Maybe she was a cop in a previous life? As an Australian native, we asked Carrie about her thoughts on the bushfires currently devastating the region. They say fight fire with fire, but anyone following the latest on the Australian wildfires knows it takes more than words to combat a crisis. The problem is most people don’t realize there are more ways to help than just donating money. When asked about ways to help, Carrie had a few suggestions; “The Rescue Collective is a wonderful organization doing important things. They have a wishlist on their website, so if you can’t spare any cash, this is another way to contribute.” And if you want to see the most adorable thing ever, look up koala mittens and joey pouches. Organizations are asking those with knitting skills to create both these items. There are always creative ways to help. Actress, singer, rescue lover, activist, animal enthusiast… Carrie Schroeder is one paw-fect person. • 12 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
DAYTONA’S JOHN HUNTER NEMECHEK RACING CARS AND LOVING DOGS By Melissa Clark
ASCAR has a new driver in town, and he is sure to be a winner. John Hunter Nemechek debuted as a rookie at the Daytona 500 NASCAR cup series race in the Spring of 2020. This is the sport’s top-level, and Nemechek does not intend to let the family name down.
IN HIS BLOOD
Racing cars runs through the Nemechek blood with his father Joe, also known as “Front Row Joe,” who is a professional stock car driver. Starting his love for racing early, Nemechek takes after his father. At the age of three, he received his first go-cart, and at six, he started racing motocross. He always knew that he wanted to race however, after a few injuries, he desired to get into something safer, and so at the age of twelve, he made his way back into stock cars. Although Nemechek has been on his own racing with other teams, he gives a great deal of applause to his father for helping his career. He explained, “He has been my mentor, advisor, boss, team owner, and, most importantly, my dad.” ©Jennifer Austin Photography
FURRY FAMILY So what does this “need for speed” twenty-two-year-old guy do on his days off the speedway? He and his fiancé Taylor own seven dogs, Willa (French Bulldog), Mocha (Chihuahua), Layla (Golden-Doodle), Sage (French Bulldog), Wilbur (FrenchieBeagle mix), Lola (Newfoundland), and Sadie (Golden Doodle). They did have eight; however, sadly, one of them perished. Zona, a rescue, was spotted by Taylor while the couple was en route to a race in Phoenix last November. Taylor noticed cars dodging out of the way for something; it was a dog. By the looks of her, they can tell that she’d been on the streets for some time. They decided to take her to the local veterinarian to check if anyone was missing a dog. Zona did not have an identification tag on her, and they soon discovered at the vet that neither was she chipped. They did learn, however, that she was a full-breed Belgian Malinois around two and a half years old, so they settled on a decision to take her home. They were able to get her from twenty-four pounds to sixty pounds, yet providing the best of care was out of the couple’s hands. Her ailments were too great, and midJanuary, they sadly had to put Zona down. Although they only had Zona for a few months, she taught Nemechek a lot about life and to never give up. He believes that animals come in and out of our lives at just the right time. Nemechek expressed, “It’s always hard to say goodbye to an animal, but it wouldn’t be fair to watch them suffer because we want them around. They are just a small part of our lives, but we’re their whole life. Taylor and I were happy that we could give Zona the chance to enjoy quality of life while we had her.”
SHARING THE FRONT ROW He has seven other animals to look after now, and they do nothing but provide serenity to his life with Taylor. He considers them a blessing, and when he has an off day, they are consistently there to welcome him when he comes home. His family life and animals are a passion, a deep and abiding love for him. He told Pet Lifestyles Magazine that when he plans to wed, his dad might have to share the “front row” with his adorable pups. His goal is to continue racing, getting into championships, and be the best he can be with what he is offered. It’s a dog’s life and he’s determined to live it to the fullest. • MARCH 2020
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MISS USA RACHEL SMITH STAYING TRUE TO HER HEART By Melissa Clark
er smile can brighten any room, her kindness is contiguous, and her generosity goes a long, long way. You may have seen Rachel Smith accepting her crown at the Miss USA pageant when she won in 2007 or working the red carpet as E! Entertainment correspondent, but what you may not know is her passion for using her stardom to help others. A DEDICATED LIFE
On the runway at American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women 2020 Red Dress Collection, Miss USA Rachel Smith and Westminster winner King.
Smith was born in Panama City, Panama, to parents Rodney and Beverly Smith. After her parents were stationed in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, she grew up in Clarksville, Tennessee, where she attended high school. Earning a full scholarship she attended Belmont University in Nashville, where she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism. All of her hard work, community affairs, and dedication would pay off when she won Miss USA and embarked on her present career.
GO RED FOR WOMEN We recently caught up with Smith at the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women 2020 Red Dress Collection the annual New York fashion week presentation held at the Hammerstein Ball Room in NYC. Excitement prevailed as she was getting her hair and makeup done for her runway appearance for this annual New York Fashion Week event bringing attention to heart health for women. Witnessing her maternal grandmother encounter cardiovascular failure at the age of seven years old, and seeing her paternal grandmother pass away due to elevated cholesterol and hypertension, gives her a personal motivation to support the AHA’s campaign to raise awareness of the risks of heart disease in women. Unfortunately, cardiovascular disease runs in Smith’s family. Smith is Bi-racial, and heart disease impacts more African-American women at an earlier age than Caucasian or Hispanic. Powered by personal loss, Smith intends to lead by example and to bring awareness to the #1 killer in the United States. Smith strolled the red carpet and the runway at the Go Red For Women 2020 Red Dress Collection with no other than King, 2019 Westminster’s best in the show. The Scottish terrier’s presence signified why it is heart-healthy to have a pet. Director of Communications for The Westminster Kennel Club (WKC) and Dog Show Analyst for FOX Sports. Gail Miller Bisher, told Pet Lifestyles Magazine, “It’s no secret that dogs lower our blood pressure and they get us out of the house, the message is clear that animals are full of love which keeps us healthy. We are so excited to be partnered with this wonderful event tonight.”
LOVING OUR FOUR LEGGED BFF’S Smith couldn’t agree more! Growing up with every “animal under the sun,” her love for our four-legged friends is undeniable and unconditional. Although her schedule is hectic, she makes the time for her dog Spike, who is 12 years of age. “Spike calms my life, “ she shares from the heart. “He increases my activity since I have to get him outside and take him for a walk. Not only does my responsibility for him help my mind, and ease my stress level; it helps my heart.” Rachel Smith and Westminster winner King together bringing attention to heart health for women. Photo by Paul Prince
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A study done by Harvard Medical School showed that having a dog in the household improves mood, social impact, immune function, and modifies the microbiome. Indeed! According to Dr. Robert H. Shmerling of Harvard Health, “It’s possible that having a dog alters the types of bacteria we harbor, which in turn could affect inflammation in the body and resultant cardiovascular risk.” What would Rachel Smith say? “Have a heart! Love a dog.” • MARCH 2020
ONCE 007’S ASSASSIN NOW AN ADVOCATE FOR ANIMALS BOND GIRL RACHEL GRANT SAVES LIVES ONE PAW AT A TIME By Melissa Clark | Photos by Geoff Tischman
t has been a moment since Rachel Grant flashed her 007 Bond Girl badge from the 2002 “Die Another Day” when she was an assassin out for Pierce Brosnan. Time has flown by and Rachel is presently concentrating on her family’s business, Biaggi, “the luggage that folds.” Launched in 2014 when her husband, CEO Stephen Hersh, landed a deal on Shark Tank, Grant is the face of the brand. An expert packer (just watch her videos on You Tube), her impressive packing abilities have landed over 150 million views worldwide and put her on shows such as The Rachael Ray Show, Bravo’s—Tour Group, and Hallmark’s —Home and Bond Girl turned animal activist, Rachel Grant with her Family, demonstrating her space-saving tips when husband, Stephen Hersh of Shark Tank fame; together they are building Biaggi folding luggage for world travelers. traveling. BEING A VOICE FOR THE VOICELESS Tori, the family Beagle, rescued as a puppy.
Though she’s occupied with building Biaggi she doesn’t let that hinder her passion for lending a hand where animals are concerned. Standing up for a good cause is in Grant’s blood. Experiencing childhood in a family that has consistently supported others in need, she can’t envision an existence without helping other people. Without a doubt she realizes the significance of human lives; however, she is committed to being a voice for the voiceless, such as helpless animals.
PUPPY LOVE - MEET KIA AND TORI We were recently invited to the family’s home. They introduced us to their rescues, Kia and Tori. Tori, a Beagle, and Kia, an equally loved mixed breed, who were rescued at separate times as puppies. Grant cannot imagine her life without her dogs around. She shares, “When I get home, they are inviting me in with such wonderful affection. And when we wake up in the morning, they are so excited to see us.” The couple makes it a point to attend events to help organizations such as Southampton Animal Shelter as well as organizations overseas. Grant’s roots are from the Philippines, and she makes sure to always lend a helping hand with one of the most well-known charities in Manila, PAWS. Grant explains to Pet Lifestyle Magazine, “PAWS is the largest animal shelter in the city of Manila, and unfortunately, the adoption rate is meager. Animals only get adopted about forty to fifty times out of the year.”
SHELTERING ARMS The adoption rate is low worldwide, Grant believes because shelters have a reputation that abandoned dogs or cats may be sick or not of the temperament to function well in a family. This fear of potential illness or bad behavior is why so many people go to breeders. Grant wants all to realize that these perceptions are incorrect, “The dogs and cats you find in a shelter are very well taken care of. By the time they are ready to be adopted they will have all their shots, a moneysaver, and most of the available pets are house trained. Plus there is a bonus: you know that you are sparing an animal’s life.” Rachel Grant is the Ambassador for Furry Kind by Human Nature, a brand that produces organic products for both humans and animals. Biaggi is continually giving and donating luggage not only to animal charities but to human organizations as well. Grant recently hosted the 17th Annual Pet Fashion Show, the largest pet fashion and animal rescue event in the world. Along with her team, she is also working on a comedy pilot. Yet despite all the exciting professional endeavors she is juggling, knowing that above all she is about doing the right thing for animals, we can’t wait to see what’s in store for her next.
Kia, a mixed breed, also rescued young now an established member of the family.
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TRAVELING WITH FIDO OR FIFI? WE HAVE THE CASE FOR YOU! By Zoe Zorka
n a time when travel is more affordable and accessible than ever and pets are considered family, many travelers are choosing to bring their pets along for the “family vacation.” Whether it’s by air, road, rail, or sea, pets need to be secure and comfortable for their journey. While there is no shortage of pet carriers on the market, choosing the right one for your pet can be difficult. When shopping for pet carrier, it’s important to keep a few factors in mind including the type and size of pet, the pet’s temperament, the type of trip, your mode of transportation, and what you plan on doing with your pet during your trip.
HIKING WITH FIDO
EYES ON FIDO OR FIFI
The Outward Hound Front Carrier is perfect if you’re looking to take your pet on a hike or outdoor adventure. Worn on your chest, the straps adjust for comfort while the lightweight, mesh siding and waterproof material help keep your pet cool and dry. An interior safety harness provides added security and comfortably clips to your pet’s collar. The carrier fits pets up to 20 lbs.
For a short flight, the Sturdi line of Pet Carriers are one of the more popular carriers for air travel. It’s flexibility allows it to easily squeeze down to fit under airline seats while its mesh siding lets your pet see what’s going on around them. The carriers come in a variety of colors and sizes - perfect for all types of pets. (They also have a line of pet tents for owners who want to take their pets camping.)
Outward Hound Pooch Pouch. Info: outwardhound.com
Large Cube Sturdi Bag Info: sturdiproducts.com
CARRY ON AND EASY OFF The Arlo Skye pet carrier comes in handy for a longer flights or trips where you might find yourself trekking through several airports or train stations. The lightweight carrier secures to your carry on handles and can easily come off when it is time to board. While you’re hoofing it from Terminal A to Terminal C, your pet can take in all the sights in comfort. The carrier offers your pet a 360 degree view as well as a memory foam mattress. It can be easily folded for convenient storage. The carrier fits pets up to 25 pounds and is the approved size for United, American Airlines, and Delta airlines. Arlo Skye airline approved pet carrier. Info: arloskye.com
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MULTI-PURPOSE PRACTICALITY The Wild One Air Travel Carrier is similar to the Arlo Skye carrier in that it can be attached to most roller suitcases, but is designed for smaller pets (up to 15 pounds). One of the added features of this carrier is that it comes in handy once you’ve reached your destination as the interior cushion folds out to become a comfortable bed and the shoulder strap serves as dual purpose as a leash. The carrier is currently available in black and tan.
All weather carrier for pets from Wild One. Info: wildone.com
EASY-GLIDE EASY ON YOUR BACK If you don’t have a roller bag and the mere idea of carrying your pet on your shoulder is giving you back pain, the Sherpa on Wheels Pet Carrier is the perfect travel solution. The recessed wheels provide easy-glide motion for walking while the adjustable shoulder strap converts to a padded pull handle when it’s time to pick up and board. The mesh panels allow your pet an unobstructed view while the privacy flaps can be lowered if they’d prefer to sleep. The carrier fits pets 19” in length x 9.5” in height and up to 22 pounds.
Sherpa on wheels. Info: sherpapet.com
For the social pet that also enjoys its personal space, the X-Zone Expandable Pet Carrier can be expanded or retracted through the use of fold-out mesh panels, turning into a mini-tent of sorts. The wire frames keep the design sturdy, but also easily collapse for convenient storage. The small carrier is suitable for pets up to 15 lbs., the large carrier 18 lbs.
The Coastal Pet is the perfect carrier for a long road trip. The Comfort Hanging Booster is easy to install and is adjustable for different sizes of dogs (up to 30 pounds) thanks to its adjustable tether strap, allowing them to look out the window while also providing the option to relax on the comfortable (and washable) pad. Its front zipper storage pockets are perfect for storing road treats!
X-Zone expandable pet carrier. Info: x-zone-pet.dog-carrier.biz
ROCKET SCIENCE While space travel isn’t available for most pets just yet, you can give your pet an out-of-this world experience with the CLOVERPET Fashion Bubble Pet Travel Carrier line. The backpack features a semi-sphere window design and comes in a variety of shapes and sizes and carrying options. Most can be worn on your back or over the shoulder, used as a car seat, and fit under most airline seats. Despite its solid casing, it features mesh panels and ventilation holes, making it perfect for the introvert pet who just wants a window to the outside world with the comfort of a secure resting spot.
Bergan® Booster Pet Carrier™ from Coastal. Info: coastalpet.com
DOGGONE HUNGRY Another thing that many pet owners forget about is transporting their pet’s food on long trips. Thankfully, Mara & Meru’s WoofMeow Dog Bowl Bag (available in both large and small) allows you to pack your pet’s food separately for hikes, picnics, or trips without mixing it in with your own food or luggage. •
For larger pets that can’t travel with their owners in the cabin, the Great Choice pet carrier is compliant with most airlines and offers a sturdy casing with breathable sides and a gated front, allowing pets to still see outside of the carrier. Great Choice also offers several bedding options specifically designed to fit inside the carrier. Cloverpet carrier. Info: cloverpet.us
Mara Meru dog bowls for travel. Info: thesafaristore.com
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MUST-HAVE TRAVEL ACCESSORIES FOR CATS By Kate Benjamin
raveling with cats can be a little trickier than traveling with dogs, but you can make it easy with these stylish accessories. It’s important to give kitty all the comforts of home when she’s on the road, plus you’ll need to make sure she’s always safe. SLEEPYPOD MOBILE PET BED KITTYPAK BACKPACK CAT GEN7PETS PET STROLLER FROM PETMATE The Sleepypod Mobile Bet Bed is the CARRIER FROM HAUSPANTHER Cadillac of cat carriers. Simply remove the top of the Sleepypod to create a comfy cat bed when at home. This way your cat will already be familiar with the carrier when it’s time to hit the road. The Sleepypod also has an optional warmer that plugs into your car for cold-weather travel. Info: sleepypod.com.
Take your cat out in style with the KittyPak Backpack Cat Carrier from Hauspanther. This fun cat carrier has two clear windows that allow cats to look out and mesh sides for ventilation. Folds flat for easy storage. Info: shop.hauspanther.com.
The Gen7Pets Pet Stroller lets you take a walk with your cat without having to carry them. Instead, let kitty ride along in comfort and safety while she enjoys some fresh air. Info: petmate.com.
TRUE ADVENTURER CAT HARNESS FROM TRAVEL CAT
YUMMY BOWL FROM SLEEPYPOD
STURDI PRODUCTS TRAVEL LITTER BOX
Whenever you take your cat out, even in a carrier or a stroller, it’s a good idea to put a harness on her for added safety. Look for a vest-type harness, like the True Adventurer Cat Harness from Travel Cat, so kitty can’t slip out. Info: yourcatbackpack.com.
The Yummy Bowl from Sleepypod makes it easy to store, transport and serve food and water on the go. Three separate compartments hold dry food, wet food and water. Made from food-grade silicone. Info: sleepypod.com.
And finally, don’t forget the litter box when traveling with your cat! Sturdi Products makes a foldable, waterproof box that works great as a litter box when traveling. Info: sturdiproducts.com. •
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HELPING YOUR DOG LIVE A LONG AND HEALTHY LIFE By Lori Zelenko
ho doesn’t want their dog to live a long and healthy life? Don’t we all want to avoid the heartbreak of early loss? Indeed a recent survey of 10,000 dog owners said their number one wish for their dog is to live longer and experience a life of sustained, good health. What if there were a natural, vet-approved, pharmaceutical-grade way to help give your dog a chance to live longer? LITTLE BIG SHOTS
Little Big Shots™ Inc. introduces Immune-D™ – A revolutionary liquid once-a-day nutritional supplement for dogs. Super anti-oxidant mineral formula consists of clinically validated ingredients, efficacy, and purity. With over 200 micronutrients including amino-acids, Beta-Glucan, minerals, and vitamins. The result of a strengthened immune system? Less vulnerability to illness, more stamina, and a longer life. What really makes the difference here is that Immune-D is a liquid, meaning no more wrapping pills in peanut butter to tempt a dubious dog, no more crushing tablets and adding chicken soup to make the medication more palatable. This exceptional supplement which comes in tasty beef gravy flavor is a stress free (for pets and pet parents) alternative when it comes to giving our four-legged best friends the suppplements they need. It is important to understand that being a liquid, Immune-D offers a 90% absorption rate vs. pills which are only 5%-18% (per the veterinary physician’s desktop guide.) Editor’s note: Thumbs up to flavored liquid supplements, brilliant solution!
DR. MARTY SAYS
Dr. Marty Goldstein, one of America’s foremost integrative veterinarians, a founding member of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association and author of the best-selling book “The Nature of Animal Healing” believes in this ultimate wellness formula, an antioxidant rich liquid that’s a once-a-day must for our four-legged best friends. Dr. Marty has long been on the forefront of nutritional supplements in the treatment of disease and maintaining the overall health of our pets. You’ve seen him on Oprah, Martha Stewart loves him and he’s a familiar face on morning talk shows like Good Morning America, so for him to enthusiastically sign on to offer Immune-D to help improve the overall health of dogs under his care is extraordinary. You can hear what he has to say about Immune-D in a short but informationpacked video on www.immune-d.com.
Immune-D founder Larry Simon with his beloved dogs.
HOW IMMUNE-D WORKS
Immune-D works by restoring essential minerals, antioxidants, amino acids and nutrients that are cooked out of most commercial pet foods. Each ingredient is clinically proven, from the micronutrients to superfood Chaga Cordyceps - the King of All Mushrooms to CordycepsPrime™ the ancient miracle herb for energy, vitality and longevity and the patented technology of AstraGin® which supports absorption of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Given the scores of internationally formulated dog foods, it is reassuring for a loving pet owner to understand that this revolutionary formula is made in the USA at an FDA registered pharmaceutical lab.
A SHOT TO LIVE LONGER
The founder, Larry Simon, wishes to see rescue dogs, challenged by tough circumstances, improve their wellbeing, and increase their time on earth. He’ll be working with shelters and rescue organizations across the country to bring them Immune-D in the coming months. Little Big Shots is planning to introduce a charitable give-back program for shelters and rescue groups. And for all the cat owners out there, take notice, Immune-C for cats is coming soon. • 20 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
HAPPY PET – HAPPY LIFE By Marchann Blake
he well-known cardiologist, Stephen Sinatra MD, often gave his patients an unusual prescription…“Get a pet.” As a physician and bioenergetic psychotherapist, Dr. Sinatra saw firsthand how stress and loneliness increase risk of heart attack and stroke. And having been a pet owner throughout his life, Dr. Sinatra also knew dogs and cats to be powerful stress relievers. And the truth of the matter is, pets help us stay healthy. “Our pets give us so much,” says Dr. Sinatra. “They go on adventures with us, comfort us when we’re down, and help heal us when we’re broken. Every day, they remind us that life should be lived in the moment and with enthusiasm. And most importantly, they love us unconditionally – no questions asked.” With adoring gazes, unbridled affection, and constant invitations to play, our beloved pets instantly make us smile and feel good. Their love for us is pure - free of limits, judgments, and conditions. With fierce loyalty and companionship, our pets genuinely love us for who we are, not who we could be to them. And that is a very special bond, indeed. It’s the reason Dr. Sinatra made “getting a dog or cat” one of his first lines of treatment for patients who had recently become widowed or divorced. “Loss of a vital connection in our lives results in heartbreak, a hidden yet serious cardiac risk factor. A pet’s unconditional love can help fill that void and heal that heartbreak.”
RETURNING THE FAVOR
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After 25 years formulating dietary supplements for humans, Dr. Sinatra – who is also a Certified Nutrition Specialist – extended his diet and nutrition expertise to pet products, and thus was born his “Ageless Paws” line of healthy treats and food toppers for dogs and cats.
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“For as long as I can remember, pets have been one of the great sources of joy in my life,” says Dr. Sinatra. “Whether it was our family cat growing up or my own dogs that I used to bring to work with me, animals have always had a special place in my heart. Given all the ways our pets enhance our lives, it’s no surprise that we want to help them live their best and longest lives. This is the reason why I started Ageless Paws – to help pet lovers return the favor.”
While uncovering your exclusive discount, be sure to grab your FREE copy of Dr. Sinatra’s report: Happy Pet, Happy Life – The Best of Dr. Sinatra’s Insights, Wisdom and Health Advice for Your Pet. Hurry, offer valid for a limited-time only – so act now! •
As with his approach to human health, Dr. Sinatra’s pet health protocol starts with eating clean, nutrient-rich foods each day, ones that are the best sources of energy. This is why his Ageless Paws freeze-dried treats and food toppers are made with just one nourishing ingredient each: 100% bison liver, turkey heart, chicken breast, beef, or wild salmon. The beef, bison and poultry are USA-raised without antibiotics or added hormones, and the salmon is wild-caught. Free of grains, fillers, added sugars, preservatives or additives, Ageless Paws treats and food toppers are high in protein, and contain nothing but the pure animal nutrition that dogs and cats thrive on. Not surprisingly, pets absolutely LOVE them! Dr. Sinatra also likes salmon, organ meats and muscle meats for pets because these are the best food sources of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), a nutrient that’s essential for good health. As a leading CoQ10 expert, Dr. Sinatra has prescribed CoQ10 supplements to his heart patients for decades and seen tremendous results. To this day, CoQ10 is still Dr. Sinatra’s number-one nutrient for heart health. He takes it himself, and also gave it to his pets to support their health and longevity. Besides high-quality nutrition, Dr. Sinatra’s prescription for pet health also includes regular exercise, and lots of love, praise, play and affection. It’s all the little things we do each day that get our pets on the road to a longer, healthier life…and, in turn, they make our lives all that much better.
Wild Salmon and Beef Treats
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NO GUT, NO GLORY HOW DO PROBIOTICS WORK? By Nathan Dewsbury
eady for a big, positive impact on your dog’s health? In this installment of the Gut Health article series, I want to bring a new perspective based on confirmed science. To really understand the relationship between probiotics and their canine host, topics get real dirty real fast. Why? Because most research about association between probiotic organisms and benefits deals with fecal samples (usually diarrhea samples).
WHAT DO PROBIOTICS DO?
Is it magic or is it a mystery? Probiotics are microbes that live throughout your dog’s digestive tract, even in the stomach. The generally recognized good microbes (i.e. Probiotics) produce beneficial waste products that are extremely useful. Sounds odd I know, just stay with me! The probiotics convert fiber- and plantbased sugars (FOS, MOS, GOS) pulled from the dog’s diet. Ideal microbe populations are found in those dogs fed a primary or heavily supplemented with raw or B.A.R.F style diets. So, in fact, these waste products are like gold to your dog’s body, enriching its biochemistry if they are able to thrive. Vitamins. Amino Acids. Short chain fatty acids (Butyric Acid). Stuff your dog could never create on its own. All these help in the feedback mechanisms of the body organ systems, cell wall strength, and immune system support.
A LITTLE SCIENCE LESSON!
When we think about any parameter we wish to track, the HOW PROBIOTICS AFFECT ANIMALS importance of establishing a baseline or “natural state” needs to be 1. Immunity: Early development has been proven as critical immune determined. In the matter of gut microbe population in an animal system development. A poultry study is currently examining we call this state ‘normobiosis.’ This normal condition means the effect of pre-& probiotic inoculation into embryos to better that microorganisms with potential health benefits dominate understand early animal development and how that informs food in number over potentially harmful ones. This is, in contrast to formulas. Ever heard of pet food companies putting this much ‘dysbiosis’, where a few potentially harmful micro-organisms are interest into developing puppy dry food formulas? Nope. dominant, thus creating a disease-prone situation. 2. Infections. Prevents UTI & bladder infections, bovine respiratory infection from Mannheima and Salmonella infection in poultry. 3. Vaccination. Promising oral applications have been studied showing 1) oral immunization demonstrated 80% protection against E.coli 0157:H7 infection in mice and 2) a probiotic infused toothpaste increases inhibition oral infections from yeast, staph and strep strains. 4. Cat Poop? Researchers have even looked into feline feces microbes’ impacts on canine gut health. Maybe we will finally understand if cat poop really is bad for dogs!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
…Increasing gut health with Probiotics is the biggest bang for your buck! –Rogue Pet Science
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Not interested in feeding probiotics? So, on-going research confirms microbe diversity in young animals promotes good growth and physical development. Research also proves that early development of a young animal’s gut microbe population is critical for faster immune system development. Both of these statements, when combined into better diet diversity, are proven to raise healthy and hardy young animals (Day 1 to 365) that need less medical attention. What are we losing by not addressing puppy and young dog gut health needs by feeding kibble based puppy food? It’s not much different from regular adult food. It certainly doesn’t have anything special in it to address any issues raised in this article. Additionally, what sacrifices are we making to long term health and development in our dogs (puppy, adult, senior, and athlete) by not addressing gut microbe populations? It’s time to take action. We need to take back control of our pet’s health! •
WORLD DOG EXPO
FUN FOR THE FAMILY AND FIDO TOO! By Annabelle Shapiro
he world’s largest, indoor, interactive, family dog event is coming to the Meadowlands Expo Center! World Dog Expo (worldexpo.dog) happening on May 30 and 31, 2020, is a multimedia marvel that every dog lover should experience, with various ways to enjoy. The show offers opportunities for those wishing to learn, shop or witness amazing dog performances. Buy your pup some yummy treats, fun toys and more through a tremendous shopping experience; everything you can imagine relating to dogs. At our event we have over 100 booths selling all kinds of dog products and services! Throughout the entire weekend, you can learn about new products and services from companies who love dogs just as much as you do. This is the perfect opportunity to discover products to make life with your dog better and more fun. Attendees will want to be sure to check out BFF Pet Service’s performing on our main arena! This incredible dog trainer and her pups will amaze you with their inseparable bond and show you many tricks that they do together. Bring the family and meet a couple of the biggest superstars in the canine showbiz world. Kids will recognize Beasley from Chew.com commercials, the brand-new movie “Agent Toby Barks,” and much more! Whidbey’s cute face can be recognized from Home Depot, Earthborn Holistic, PetValu, and Chewy.com commercials! You may also recognize Petunia from her debut on Saturday Night Live, Five Below & Home Depot commercials and HGTV. They will be there all weekend long showing off their skills and tricks.
The World Dog Expo at The Meadowlands May 30-31, 2020
Fun for Fido too! World Dog Expo at The Meadowlands May 30-31, 2020
Enjoy numerous other all-star dogs proving that they’re the best in the world at dock diving, weight pulling, disc dog and other various dog sports. Bring your pup and take part in the Try-Its, a unique opportunity for your pet to participate! There’s never been an event that provides as many opportunities for the dog and owner to participate together in sports, training, and other bonding experiences. Dog owners can meet with experts to try out various sports and other activities to find the best match for the dog and the owner. Amusement Bark will feature three interactive events including Treat Street, Toy Town and Pop’n Playland! A fun way for your dog to show you its favorite toy or treat, this room will be divided to allow your dog to individually to show you their snack and toy to buy. Let your dog try Pop’n Playland, where they can play in a giant ball pit just for dogs! This also provides a great photo opportunity! To get your tickets for World Dog Expo at the Meadowlands, go to worldexpo.dog. •
PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE | 23
FIDO GETS TO GO!
VACATIONING WITH YOUR PET IN FLORIDA By Beth A. Freely
t may only be February, but it’s never too early to start planning your family vacation. And when we say family, that includes the four-legged family members. Vacationing in Florida has just gotten easier for pet parents who want to bring their tongue lolling, tail wagging, catnip sniffing fur children. We’ve found some pet friendly accommodations, beaches and restaurants for you – and your four-legged buddies – to check out. NORTHWEST FLORIDA Surf and Sand Dog Beach at Pier Park: This dog-friendly beach is part of Panama City Beach. Your pup can run off the leash in the surf, although guests are encouraged to follow the rules when the beach is crowded. Info: visitpanamacitybeach.com/ articles/post/petfriendly/.
Residence Inn Sandestin at Grand Boulevard: Situated between Miramar Beach and Santa Rosa Beach in Destin, this hotel will let you bring not one, but two pets of any size during your stay. They will pamper your pet with treats, pats and even a guest “Pet of the Month” award. Info: marriott. com/hotels/travel/vpsri-residence-inn-sandestin-at-grandboulevard/. Surf & Sand Hotel: Furry, four-legged friends are welcome here 365-days a year on every floor and the pet-friendly beach. Just minutes from the Pensacola Beach Dog Park and the pet-friendly Island Culture Tiki Bar and Red Fish Blue Fish Restaurant. Info: surfandsandhotelpensacolabeach.com/. Bayview Dog Park & Beach: This dog park in Pensacola is an acre of park and beach that is fenced in, keeping your pets safe as they romp and play. It also includes walking trails, dog showers, waste stations and a shaded pavilion for pup parents. Info: cityofpensacola.com/Facilities/Facility/Details/ Bayview-Park-21. The Henderson: This awesome hotel has a Canine Ambassador Program and pampers your pups with their own souvenir dog toy. Dog beds, and bowls are provided for their visit. Info: hendersonbeachresort.com/stay/dog-friendly. One Ocean
NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA St. George Island: Situated along the “Forgotten Coast” about an hour and half outside of Tallahassee is St. George Island, a pet-friendly island perfect for vacationing families. It even has grooming spas and boutiques for pet pampering. Info: ficklingvacationrentals.com/wp-content/ uploads/2017/01/pets_vacation_too.pdf.
NORTHEAST FLORIDA One Ocean Resort & Spa: This resort just outside of Jacksonville will pamper your pooch with their own complimentary pet bowls and a gourmet pet room service menu. Dogs are welcome on the Atlantic Beach if they are on a leash. Info: oneoceanresort.com. Dog Wood Park: Considered an epic dog park with 25 acres of land for your pooch to explore, Dog Wood Park is a must see. Let your pup have fun romping through the on-site obstacle course and large swimming lake that has a beach and rinse station. Info: jaxdogs.com/about.html. 24 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
CENTRAL WEST FLORIDA Dinosaur World: Go on a Jurassic adventure with your pooch. With 150 life sized dinos, your leashed pup will enjoy the park’s pathways and pictures with beasts of old. There are even water stations for your dog, so they don’t get dehydrated. Info: dinosaurworld.com. Don CeSar: Known as Florida’s “Pink Palace,” your pup will enjoy specialty treats, custom water bowls, pet placemats and plenty of walking trails and pet friendly beaches. Info: doncesar.com. Fort De Soto: Let your dog roam the Paw Playground and Dog Beach to their heart’s content before heading down to the The Dog Bar which features its own off leash dog park. Info: visitstpeteclearwater.com/profile/fort-soto-park/831. TradeWinds Islands Resort: Featuring their own “Sit. Stay. Play. 3-Night Pet Package,” you and your dog will enjoy the pet friendly suite and a Bow Wow Pet Amenity that includes a bandana, frisbee, collapsible water bowl, treats and one meal from the Paw Court bistro, among other fun things. Info: tradewindsresort.com/index. Fort De Soto - The Dog Bar
Disney’s Port Orleans Resort Riverside: Even the Magic Kingdom wants you to bring your four-legged family on vacation! Your pup will get spoiled with their very own Pluto Welcome Kit that has placemats, bowls, an ID tag and their very own charm for their collar. It has a pet park on the property, and you can bring two dogs of any size to the resort for an additional nightly fee. Info: disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/port-orleansresort-riverside/?CMP=OKC-wdw_lodging_gmap_21.
CENTRAL EAST FLORIDA Kimpton Vero Beach Hotel & Spa: With no additional cost for your four-legged family members, the Kimpton will spoil your pooch with treats in the lobby, a variety of pet amenities, a bed, bowls and more. It’s close to 21 dog friendly restaurants and the Vero Beach Dog Park. Info: verobeachhotelandspa.com.
SOUTHWEST FLORIDA Kimpton Vero Beach
The Island Cow: Located in Sanibel, the pet-friendly restaurant is a must visit when you are vacationing in Florida. The wait staff will spoil your pooch with treats and a cold bowl of water as you dine on the covered front patio. Info: sanibelislandcow.com.
SOUTHEAST FLORIDA Brazilian Court Hotel: Your pup can enjoy the “Bark Butler” at this hotel, giving them their own BarkBox when they arrive, daily walking services, their own spa service, a photo session, hand-delivered treats, and so much more. Part of the fee for this package goes to the Humane Society of Broward County. Info: thebraziliancourt.com.
Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa: Man’s best friend gets the Opal Paws accommodations here. They get their own gift bag and an Opal Paws bed that they get to take home. Info: hutchinsonshores.com/accommodations/opal-paws/. Banana Bay Resort & Marina: Great for short- and long-term guests, pet lovers will get treated to a grand old time with a welcome package. There are pet friendly watersports available at the resort for you and your pooch to enjoy. Info: bhotelsandresorts.com/banana-bay/amenities. Blue Heaven: Bring your furry friend with you to the outdoor seating area of this restaurant for an enjoyable meal in the Bahama Village district of Key West. Info: blueheavenkw.com. Pier House Resort & Spa: Situated on the lush Key West waterfront, this resort offers your pets the same hospitality as their human parents. It is close to a variety of dog parks, restaurants and shopping. Plus, the Key West Aquarium and Mallory Square are pet friendly so they can join in the fun. Info: pierhouse. com. Old Town Manor: Located in a historic mansion, this highly pet-friendly B&B just steps from Duval Street doesn’t require your pets to be crated or have a size restriction. It’s located near pet-friendly restaurants and attractions and there doesn’t seem to be a limit on how many pets you bring. Info: oldtownmanor.com. • MARCH 2020
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SURVIVING A NEW YORK WINTER WITH YOUR DOG TIPS FROM ROCK & RAWHIDE By Sean-Patrick M. Hillman
ven when the end is in sight and we’ve had a few teaser days to enjoy, there is no argument that winter is always a difficult time for city-dwellers: We’re stuck inside, trying to clean that rancid salt and dirt from the black snow off of our shoes and boots much less Fido’s paws! And yes, we’re also making a conscientious effort to keep Fido calm, healthy and fit when it is cold and wet outside…sadly a weather condition that carries on well into Spring. These are all norms in the Big Apple. And 2020 is forecast as one of the coldest and wettest on record in the tri-state area…at least that’s what people “in the know” are saying. As a third-generation Manhattan-born and bred in the 70’s and 80’s, I have lived through blizzards, bombogenesis, hurricanes, SuperStorms, blackouts and more in this town. Each presented its challenges when it came to caring for my dogs. To help you get through what is supposedly a tough winter (has the weatherperson ever been held accountable for a bad forecast?!), I have compiled some tips and tricks from two of Rock & Rawhide’s Pack…our Board Advisor & Trainer, Kate Perry Dog Training, as well as our veterinarian, Dr. Stephanie Liff at Pure Paws of Hell’s Kitchen on West 42nd Street. Here are some of Kate’s best fun, innovative indoor tricks and games for when it’s too cold to walk outside and to prevent your dogs from going stir crazy: • Turn your hallways into a mini agility course for dogs: Teach your pooch to jump through hula hoops on a yoga mat or carpet for soft landings. This is a great way to exercise your pooch and have fun. • Teach your pooch to run through 6-8 foot tunnels. These tunnels, made of fabric, are pretty inexpensive and can be bought at most pet specialty stores. • For the more athletic pooches and owners: Do stairmaster exercises in your stairwell. o Use the fire exit stairs to run up and down with your pooch. Great exercise for you and your dog :) o OR have 2 people standing on separate landings and work on your RECALL/ COME command. • For the older more lazy pooch. Use a yoga mat to teach lie down and rollover trick or army crawl. • One of Kate’s favorites is to teach dogs to spin on a towel after coming in from wet snowy days. It’s not only fun but is also very practical to wipe their feet off without you having to do it. (And especially for those dogs that don’t like their paws being touched.) You can then combine both a spin and rollover trick on the towel. And voila...Your dog has dried itself off on the towel. And this trick is featured in my book!!! • And if you don’t have time to partake in games with your Pooch, then use puzzle games. Nina Ottossen creates wonderful board and puzzle games for high IQ pooches to work to get their food. (“Outward Hound Dog Brick, Dog Tornado” game and many more). Kate also likes the Busy Buddy Twist and Treat by Pet Safe company. You can fill them with yummy treats. Then place and/or hide them in different parts of the apartment and tell your dog to GO FIND IT to find the puzzle game. After they run off in search of toy, they then have to work on getting food out. This meets the dog’s natural instincts to want to forage and search for their food. Great mental stimulation too!! 26 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
To learn more about Kate Perry, please visit kateperrydogtraining. com. Or, if you would like to learn more tips and tricks right away, you can buy Kate’s award-winning book, available on Amazon, “Training For Both Ends Of The Leash” which is a REALLY easy read and a lot of fun. Often during the winter months, you run into health or wellness issues with your dog because they can’t exercise as much, or they don’t want to be outside in the freezing cold for more than a few minutes at a time. Dr. Stephanie Liff ’s tips for a healthier pooch during the winter months include: • Make sure that your building is using pet-friendly snow melt or salt – if they aren’t, or you walk your dog around the city streets, you should consider a barrier for their paws, like pet boots (i.e. - PAWZ) or wax (i.e. - Mixlab, Mushers, etc.). • You have to be careful about walking through puddles, curb “ponds” and snowbanks because of potential dangers hidden underneath, especially when it comes to the temperature of the water because it can hurt their paws. • If it’s cold for you, it is cold for your pet. If it’s really cold, you need to make sure they have a coat or some kind of insulated barrier like a fleece or heavy sweater. • If their activity level is less because of weather, you should monitor calorie intake just like humans. You may want to consider feeding them a little less food or cutting back on treats so that they can maintain that “summer bod.” • If it’s a dry season, use fish oil in their food and consider extra bathing with a conditioner. You need to make sure to keep their coat shiny. Along those lines, also monitor nail length as you may need to get them trimmed more often. • If your schedule changes because of the weather or time change, you need to still make sure their medication, training, feeding and sleeping schedule remains the same. Dogs rely on structure and schedule for mental well-being.
To learn more about Dr. Liff, please visit purepawsvet.com. Dr. Liff sits on the board of one of Rock & Rawhide’s rescue partners, Muddy Paws Rescue (muddypawsrescue.org) and is considered to be one of the best veterinarians in the city. New York is hard enough on our pets, no matter what the season, but hopefully these tips will help you make it through the colder months of the year. As a rule of paw, always remember that if it is too cold for you, regardless of their fur coat, it is likely too cold for them to be outside for long periods of time. Stay Pawesome and warm this winter!!! • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Sean-Patrick M. Hillman is the Chairman & Co-Founder of Rock & Rawhide, a 501(c)3 non-profit whose mission is to increase the level of adoptions of dogs and cats at shelters and rescues. MARCH 2020
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FLYING WITH CATS? FOLLOW THESE TIPS FOR PURRFECT DOMESTIC TRAVEL By Arielle Bennett and Dr. Eric Dougherty, DVM
lying with a cat is not necessarily the easiest undertaking, and as airlines shrink our few inches of legroom, cats also lose their allotted space on a plane. If you’ve noticed your cat was stressed in their carrier before, the airline experience will be exponentially more difficult because traveling to the airport is dreary for us humans too. Now that I’ve been running a feline veterinary practice in Manhattan with my spouse for several years (thecatpractice.com), my clients often ask what they should do about traveling with their cats. When I moved across country from one coast to the other with my cat I had no idea how challenging it was going to be throughout the trip. The good news is that most cats are relatively well behaved in-flight, but in my experience flying with one of my cats, I would rather drive across the country and stop every few hours than put us through air travel again. CATS ON A PLANE Explore your travel options and put your cat’s needs first. Before flying with your cat, first consider whether this is a trip of necessity (like a move), how long the trip is, what kind of temperament your cat has, and whether you have any alternatives. Some people might think seeing relatives out of state would be fun with their cat, but honestly your cat would be happier at home with a sitter or being boarded in a cat-friendly environment. I genuinely thought my cat would do well on a plane based on his fantastic temperament at home, but he literally chewed out of his carrier on-the-plane, meowed the entire time, and peed on himself. No matter what I did he never calmed down, and I would’ve done anything to have helped him feel better about the trip. Luckily he had a harness and I was able to hold him as the kind flight attendant duct taped the carrier back together. Flying can be very stressful for a cat that will likely have nowhere to walk, eat/drink, or use the restroom, which is why traveling with cats in planes should only be done out of absolute necessity. Plan ahead and pick your airline strategically. Airlines are not equally pet-friendly and have different pet travel fees and rules (such as for carrier size and even the size/breed of your cat), and many do not allow more than one per passenger. Depending on the airline, pets are not necessarily guaranteed a spot if you book online, and some airlines will not let you move your cat from under the seat. While domestic travel with cats is much easier than international, check your airline’s policies and make sure to call ahead to book your flight and ask questions. If you are able to purchase an aisle seat, extra legroom, and/or an expedited check-in or security line, it could be helpful as well. If possible, non-stop flights would be preferable for kitty to arrive at the destination sooner. Even if your cat is an emotional support animal and you may have more flexibility on the plane, several airlines have made increasing restrictions for them. There are agencies that specialize in transporting pets, but your cat may fly in the cargo area and could be left unattended for hours and have a longer trip than if they flew with you, so check reviews and thoroughly research how they will keep your cat safe. 28 | PET LIFESTYLES MAGAZINE
Phil finally feeling more like himself in his harness
ASK THE VET
Visit your vet. Always make sure your cat is healthy and microchipped before any travel. Cats can usually be given domestic health certificates for travel by their veterinarian in a simple office visit (some airlines have their own form and timeline for certificates, so check their guidance). Many of our clients ask us about sedation, but if something goes wrong you won’t be able to get your cat medical attention, so sedation isn’t often recommended. There are alternatives such as anti-anxiety medicines that may be used in stressful travel times, but be sure your veterinarian gives you the approval, and also give your cat a trial run on the medicine at home beforehand to ensure there are no negative side effects.
Phil enjoying his travel stroller that doubles as one of his house beds
KITTY TRAVEL TIPS
Keep your cat as safe and comfortable as you can while flying. Your kitty’s needs on the flight are imperative, yet your options for comfort will be limited. Help your cat learn to walk with a harness and leash well before the trip, and keep the carrier you’re using out so your cat gets used to it in a positive way. Attract them to it with treats, catnip, and toys so they’ll feel safer on the big day. It’s useful for cats to experience their carriers more than just going to the vet, so take them on a few short outings and reward them greatly. Before you leave for the airport, use catnip and calming pheromone sprays in the carrier, and bring something breathable to cover part of it so your cat won’t see all the chaos around them. An unwashed shirt with your smell is good to use as bedding, and even include a favorite soft toy. While it might not be cozy for your cat to be in a harness, you will have to take them out of the carrier for the security screening. I was able to hold my cat through the metal detector, but I wouldn’t count on being allowed to. Find out in advance if there is a designated pet zone in your airport or airline lounge that you can use before flying. Once you’re in the air, talk to the flight attendant and see if they will be easygoing and hopefully let you keep your carrier on your lap after takeoff. If you can offer your cat water that is also important, though it might be difficult to find a way to do so. For long flights your cat will likely need to go to the bathroom, but given the small-sized carriers that planes allow, your cat may be quite messy when you land. If you can bring a change of bedding or disposable pad and wipes, it may come in handy. Throughout the flight, talk to your cat and use tones of comfort, patience, and reassurance. Remember, your cat might need a few days to adjust once you two make it to your destination, but we know that bringing her with you was well worth it! Arielle Bennett and Dr. Eric Dougherty, DVM are The Cat Practice, veterinarians just for cats. For more information, go to thecatpractice.com. •
THE BEST PET TECH AND GADGETS FROM THE CONSUMER ELECTRONICS SHOW 2020 By Aaron Greenbaum
very year in Las Vegas, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) presents the tech innovations that will change our lives in the coming year. Companies present their upcoming, must-buy products; while some are only for humans, there is a growing assortment just for pets - and the humans who love them. In case you missed CES this year, here’s a few of the coolest gadgets and apps that are going to make Fido and Fifi and their parents very happy campers this Spring. THE PERFECT SUPPORT ROBO-PET TURN SLIDING DOORS INTO DOGGIE DOORS Less of a gadget for pets and more for pet lovers, Tombot’s Jennie is the ultimate emotional support animal. Developed in collaboration with the wizards at Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, Jennie is a marvel of animatronics, interactive sensors, and voice command-reactive AI that helps people who suffer from severe anxiety, depression, or dementia. Jennie might not be alive, but she can certainly help people who need her. Info: tombot.com.
Tombot’s Jennie has the calming effect of a real puppy.
Doggie doors are great for letting your pets out whenever they want, but pet doors also can ruin your doors and open up your house to all sorts of uninvited guests. The Wayzn Smart Door solves both problems by transforming your glass sliding door into an app-controlled, automatic entryway for your pet. The device can connect to Wi-Fi cameras so you always know when your pet wants to go out or come in. Not only is the Smart Door easy to set up – no cutting out holes in your door – it also keeps house doors securely shut so they can’t be forced open, which gives you that extra measure of security. Info: wayzn.com.
The Wayzn Smart Door has all the luxury of a doggie door and none of the worry.
FULLY AUTOMATIC LITTER BOX
A SIFT IN LITTER BOX TECHNOLOGY
Many companies are realizing that cat owners want an automatic pooper scooper that takes the hassle out of cleaning a litter box, and the iKuddle Auto-Pack Litter Box has just that. Not only does this litter box automatically start scooping the poop after your cat leaves, it also selfdeodorizes, eliminating most of the smell. Plus, the iKuddle seals the poop in a disposable bag, all while informing you that the cat waste is ready to be thrown away. The less time you spend scooping poop, the better. Info: ikuddle.com.
Most automatic litter boxes use the tried and true method of scooping out soiled litter, but Autopets Litter-Robot 3 Connect employs the novel technique of sifting out used litter. Moreover, it’s not even a box; the LitterRobot 3 Connect is a large, rotating globe that drops soiled litter into an odor-eliminating waste drawer. This design saves as much good litter as possible and keeps cat paws clean. And, the Connect in the name isn’t for show. The device connects to a phone app that keeps you notified when your cat uses the litter box and when it’s time to empty the waste drawer. The AutoPets Litter-Robot 3 Connect combines form and function in one useful package. Info: litter-robot.com.
The iKuddle Auto-Pack Litter Box scoops out used kitty litter and gets it ready for the trash.
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The AutoPets Litter-Robot 3 Connect sifts out used litter without throwing away good litter.
FIRST CLASS AIR TRAVEL FOR YOUR PET SMART BONE FOR SMART DOG DENTISTRY Shipping pets in an airplane is as unpleasant for them as it is for you, but the CarePod Carrier now takes care of that problem. Developed in collaboration with Delta Airlines, the CarePod Carrier lets your pets fly safe and sound. Each CarePod keeps pets comfortable and fully hydrated, and you receive notifications when your pets take off, land, or encounter any unfortunate trouble. The one downside to the CarePod is it is only available at select Delta Airlines locations, but that’s a small price to pay for a safe, airborne pet. Info: care-pod.com.
Every dog bone manufacturer and their grandmother produces a product that actively cleans a dog’s teeth, or at least tries to, but the SmartOsso actually keeps an eye on their teeth and scans for cavities. Moreover, the SmartOsso measures your dog’s body temperature, heart rate, pulse, saliva pH level, and stress, which are just as important to your dog’s health as their teeth. All data is sent to a handy phone app, so knowing whether your pet needs a visit to the doggie dentist is one chew away. Info: smartosso.it.
Delta Airline’s CarePod keeps your favorite pet calm and cared for during any flight.
The SmartOsso helps you keep an eye on your dog’s teeth.
FIDO’S FITBIT Most smart collars are just expensive collars with some extra – and useful – bells and whistles. However, the Sure Petcare Animo is a smart device that attaches to the collar and functions just like a Fitbit, or to be more specific, a really smart Fitbit. At first, it merely tracks your dog’s activities, barking habits, and caloric burns, but it eventually learns and interprets these behaviors and starts to set goals for your pet. Additionally, the Animo can examine your dog’s level of sleep quality, so after it sends you data, you can know if your dog is getting enough exercise and sleep. Info: surepetcare.com.
Set and keep activity goals with Sure Petcare’s Animo.
PURRFECT PORTION CONTROL
DOGGIE EMOTION TRANSLATOR
Making sure pets get the right amount of food is hard, especially if they need to go on a diet. Accurately eyeballing the proper amount of food is not easy, which is where the Surefeed Pet Feeder Connect comes in. This smart pet feeder features handy integrated lights and weights so you don’t provide too much food. Plus, the Surefeed Pet Feeder Connect secures your pet’s food so that only they can eat it. Add in app functionality that keeps tabs on your pet’s eating habits, and you have a high tech dietician for your pet. Info: surepetcare.com.
Most of the time, decoding your dog’s mood is educated guesswork at best. But, the Inupathy dog vest removes conjecture from the equation by measuring your dog’s heart rate and providing bright colors that interpret your dog’s barks and divide them into six distinct emotion categories. This comfortable can be worn all the time, and you can know whether your dog barks at the neighbor because they’re angry or just merely curious. Info: Inupathy.com. • Know if your dog barks in anger or excitement with the Inupathy dog vest.
SureFeed’s Pet Feed Connect helps maintain portion control for any cat.
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HOME FOR THE PIANO MAN’S BFFS SQUARE PAWS DESIGNS BILLY JOEL ROOMS AT NORTH SHORE ANIMAL LEAGUE AMERICA’S NEW FELINE ADOPTION CENTER By Lori Zelenko with KC Jones | Photos by Geoff Tischman
illy Joel’s love for animals and his commitment to their well-being sings out at North Shore Animal League America (animalleague.org) in two extraordinary spaces designed by Mario Arbore, the architect turned cat whisperer behind the cat-focused design firm, Square Paws (squarepaws.com). Where? When? How? These are the first questions any Billy Joel fan will ask. The answers come from Arbore, a long time devoted fan of The Piano Man, a cat daddy himself, creator of two remarkable Billy Joel-inspired cat habitats at North Shore Animal League America. These spaces are open to the cat-adopting public at their Bianca’s Furry Friends Feline Adoption Center, affectionately called BFF, a 14,000 square foot, state-of-the-art space which transcends whimsical and entertaining to be practical and inviting. PROUD PARENTS Technical details first, the space expands the existing Adoption Center on the NSALA Port Washington, New York campus, home to the world’s largest no kill rescue and adoption organization. BFF is a remarkable cage-free feline habitat. The cage-free concept allows for maximum socialization, crucial in matching cats with potential adopters. This environment helps felines avoid depression and aggression by eliminating the stress of living in a cage or being in close proximity to dogs. By helping the cats feel calmer and more confident, shorter stays at the facility are expected and adopter/ feline matchmaking improves. The carefully designed habitats of the signature rooms enable the cats to behave naturally, allowing visitors, and potential adopters, to witness their true personalities on display. More than 400 felines have been adopted to date at Bianca’s Furry Friends (since the December 2019 opening.) The number is climbing steadily due to the benefits of these bespoke, cat-centric habitats (like the Billy Joel rooms designed by Arbore, as well as those designed by The Rachael Ray Foundation and Hallmark teams.) Editor’s note: we are crazy for Billy Joel and the architect who made his vision relatable to all. These two are at the top of our charts! Animal League America, like a proud parent, is truly gratified to see that adopters, once seeking mostly kittens, are delightedly expanding their universe, reaching out to include seniors, bonded pairs, and siblings too! This is due to the comfort and home-like feeling of the spaces - including the Billy Joel rooms - at NSALA. In fact, we saw a pretty pair of brothers who cornered the market on kitty cuteness; these Empire State twins definitely have a New York state of mind. Love their cat-titude!
Desgner of the Billy Joel rooms at North Shore Animal League America, Mario Arbore of Square Paws, a cat whisperer himself.
KEEPING OUR BFF’S HAPPY AND HEALTHY Square Paws worked with NSALA to create the Billy Joel rooms as easy, accessible (yet innovative!) environments designed as BFF is, in general, to help felines stave off depression and aggression; the more relaxed and literally “at home” cats are, the better chance they have at finding and keeping a forever home. What makes for the “can’t stop smiling” result is the Square Paws signature humor, from a cat-shadowed baby grand to subway cars with ads that take cat puns to new heights. BFF is designed to highlight the joy of feline companionship while educating visitors on issues related to adoption and the care of cats. Unique adoption opportunities and felinethemed events like cat cafés. Long term it is hoped that BFF—and naturally the Billy Joel rooms—will become a mustsee destination for cat lovers and for the national humane community.
Kitties nest comfortably in these Feline amps blissfully enjoying life in the new Billy Joel rooms by Square Paws at North Shore Animal League America.
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SOOTHING SOUNDS Psychologist Dr. Charles Snowdon, University of Wisconsin-Madison, has proven through research that dulcet tones are calming for cats. It does appear that Billy Joel knows how to tame a not-so-savage kitty; his music plays inside the rooms at NSALA. It may be rock ‘n’ roll but these cats like it! And so do the cat parents coming to adopt. The Piano Man’s generosity is beyond compare; he donated proceeds from his 65th Birthday concert to help build BFF and a palace it is for once forlorn furry friends now living the good life. Part of his devotion is his loyalty to his own BFFs, Beth and her husband, media icon Howard Stern. Since the passing of their beloved bulldog, Bianca, the Sterns have become known as esteemed cat rescuers and foster parents of many a kitty over the years (they have facilated more than 1,000 adoptions to date). As the spokesperson for North Shore Animal League America, Beth Stern’s voice is heard around the world; she speaks for the voiceless.
It’s only rock ‘n’ roll but they like it. Cats enjoy Billy Joel’s greatest hits in their new space at North Shore Animal League America and some even channel The Piano Man himself.
THE PIANO MAN What goes on inside The Piano Man’s room? Naturally a nod to Billy Joel’s piano playing prowess. Inside the feline shape construction of the vertical grand piano lies a ‘jungle gym’ for afternoon recess. Classic Fender amps are rebranded as ‘Feline’ with scratch pads on each side of their openings. Cats scratch not only to file their claws, as most of us know, but it’s also a way for them to mark their territory and stretch their bodies. Scratch pads are essential. Because cats are extremely sensitive to changes in their environments, territory distinctions are fundamental to enabling them to have a sense of security in their living space. A positive habitat occurs and they are at ease when meeting potential new parents. A runway underneath a musical chord adds another lively element for the cats. The perfect finishing touch? A black and white photo portrait of Billy Joel himself. Half of a matched pair, this kitty has cat-titude. He’s in a New York State of Mind with designer Mario Arbore in the Billy Joel rooms, the new destination for feline adoption.
NEW YORK STATE OF MIND Traveling next door to the second Billy Joel room, we enter Manhattan. We’re playfully welcomed to “A New York State of Mind,” complete with an Empire State Building playground. The cats like to hang out, relaxing by the windows of the minirecreation of the façade of Yankee Stadium. Connected by floating clouds, says Mario Arbore, the space is “a tribute to Joel’s beloved Yankee Stadium, great for the felines to relax and take in views of passing potential pet parents.” T he “Bro ok ly n Br idge” is e qu ipp e d w it h susp ens ion c ables for a d d e d extracurricular activity. Our personal favorite: The subway car, “CAT” short for Cat Authority Transport. Cleverly mimicking NYC’s MTA, kitty-scaled subway cars are lined with ads, hysterically funny to cat parents and cat fanciers alike (FYI: dog parents are not exempt from clever kitty jokes.) Sisal-wrapped subway poles also entertain four-legged feline “commuters.”
NEXT STOP FURREVER HOME The phrase “Next Stop Is Your Furrever Home” headlines the subway doors; capturing all the love Square Paws put into the space. The railway track running underneath the subway cars adds another frisky element, leaving no room for the blues much less boredom. Welcome to kitty heaven! For potential cat parents the Billy Joel rooms deliver their own reward: Every feline friend is chill, cooling out in the coziest habitat this side of paradise. • MARCH 2020
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A TROPICAL HOME FOR OUR FINE FEATHERED FRIENDS COSTA RICA’S TOUCAN RESCUE RANCH By Allison Croce
osta Rica, a country full of lush tropical rainforests, volcanoes, and some of the best surfing in the world is also home to an array of beautiful and exotic animal and bird species. In fact, there are over 850 birds that call the country home, as well as over 200 species of mammals. FOCUS ON CONSERVATION Since the 1980s, Costa Rica has focused on conservation. Over 25% of Costa Rican land is protected reserves, and there are also many national parks, wildlife refuges, mangroves, and wetlands, making Costa Rica a true paradise on Earth. The Toucan Rescue Ranch (TRR), nestled in the foothills of Braulio Carrillo National Park, was founded in 2004 by Leslie Howle and Jorge Murillo with the intention of rescuing, rehabilitating, and releasing Costa Rican toucans. As the center grew, Costa Rica’s governing wildlife agency, MINAE, started bringing them other species of birds to rescue and rehabilitate. By 2007, their rescue efforts had expanded to include sloths, making them a multi-species rescue facility with emphasis on toucans, owls, and sloths. From its inception, the TRR has continually expanded in multiple ways. They’ve proven successful in parentraised captive breeding programs for both emerald toucanets and keel-billed toucans. They have physically expanded, adding a veterinary clinic at their main site as well as a release site, located in Sarapiqui, Costa Rica. This is where they release the majority of the rehabilitated animals back into the wild.
The mission of The Toucan Ranch in Costa Rica has expanded beyond simply rescuing beautiful birds to include other wildlife like this baby Mexican hairy Porcupine.
THE TRR MISSION The mission of the Toucan Rescue Ranch is for the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of Costa Rican wildlife. Their focus is on conservation, education, and research to help promote a brighter outlook for the animals in their care. The Ministry of Environment and Energy of Costa Rica (MINAE) brings the TRR injured, sick and vulnerable animals for them to receive care and rehabilitation leading to the ultimate goal of release back into the wild. In 2017, thanks to a monitoring and tracking program called Saving Sloths Together, sloth release efforts increased measurably.
Toucans find sanctuary in Costa Rica at The Toucan Rescue Ranch. Here a Collared Aracari.
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RESCUING EXOTICS One of the biggest issues wildlife rescues face is the illegal trafficking of exotic animals. The illegal pet trade is booming, thanks in part to the ease of e-commerce and listing animals for sale on social media. Exotic species of animals and birds are captured in the wild and sold on the black market as pets. In fact, it‘s a multibillion-dollar industry. These animals require specialized care and a large majority end up in rescues. The Toucan Rescue Ranch offers educational programs aimed at addressing conservation efforts and awareness, as well as the safe handling and care of exotics for those who are instrumental in rescue.
Sloths are happy to cohabitate with Owls and Toucans at Costa Rica’s Toucan Rescue Ranch.
The Ministry of Environment and Energy of Costa Rica brings the TRR injured, sick and vulnerable animals for them to receive care and rehabilitation.
For those reading this article that either own exotic animals or birds, or are thinking about getting one as a pet, it is imperative that you not contribute to the illegal pet trade. A great first step is to contact a rescue and see if any birds or other exotic animals are available for adoption. A rescue will work with you to match you with the bird or other exotic animal that’s the best fit for your lifestyle and experience level. Also, it’s important to check the laws in your area, as many exotic animals are banned in some cities and states. Another option is to locate a reputable breeder in your area that can teach you proper care and handling of the bird or animal and continue to be available to you even after you go home with your new pet.
SHOW YOUR LOVE If you want to show your support for the wonderful work being done at the Toucan Rescue Ranch in Costa Rica, you can adopt an animal symbolically. There are some fun options available and you’ll know that you’re contributing to the care of a rescued animal or bird. Visit toucanrescueranch.org/ adopt for more information on the adoption program. There are also opportunities for volunteering and internships, corporate sponsorship, and more. Visit toucanrescueranch. org for more information on all the good that this organization is doing and how you can get involved! •
Though the Toucan Rescue Ranch may focus on birds, other wildlife are welcome including this Tabu Oncilla.
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Between drought, extreme heat, and the bushfires the Koala population is at tremendous risk for survival. Koalas - and Australian wildlife overall - need our help more than ever. Give. Now.
LEND A HAND TO THE KOALAS!
HELP SAVE AUSTRALIA’S WILDLIFE HURT BY THE BUSHFIRES By Michael LaChance
he Australian koala, usually associated with all things cute and cuddly, is suffering in the midst of the deadly bushfires. Instead of seeing pictures of adorable creatures nestled in trees we’re seeing animals on fire, nearly dying of thirst, lost, dazed, confused, and deprived of their natural habitat. But thanks to rescue teams coming to help from all over the world and the dedication of medical teams at Koala Hospitals helping to heal these animals so emblematic of Australia, there’s hope that they will be saved from extinction. THE LOWDOWN
Newspapers, news channels and social media have been all abuzz off late, filled with images and videos of fuzzy creatures darting through a darkness tinged with red and smothered with smoke — these are the koalas, fighting for their lives in scenes you would expect in an apocalyptic film not the evening news. Koalas, the iconic animal always associated with all things Australian, are struggling to survive amidst the horrific bushfires currently ravaging Australia. These treasured national symbols have been on the IUCN’s Vulnerable List since 2016 and there have been fears that the already threatened species is getting closer to extinction as the bushfires have taken a deadly toll on their already decreasing numbers.
This little Koala named Ember, is being treated at Currumbin Wildlife Hospital for burns as well as chlamydia, which affects many koalas even in the wild.
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Usually extremely independent animals, these clever creatures actually do better when they are undisturbed by human beings. Leaving them to their own devices works wonders for their health and wellbeing. However, koalas depend on forests to survive as these asocial creatures spend most of their time climbing and resting in the trees they inhabit. They also rely heavily on the eucalyptus leaf that makes up most of their diet. Although they are used to seeking refuge in nearby bodies of water if there is a natural disaster or a drought and are somewhat capable of surviving some forest fires, the recent tragedy has been devastating to forest cover, streams, creeks and all the resources that the koala depends upon for survival. Since so much of their habitat has been destroyed in these fires, they’re coming close to a threat of extinction. Their ecosystem is just about destroyed as the eucalypt trees are not growing back quickly enough to reforest areas that have been consumed by bushfires. Now more so than ever, the koalas need our help.
TIME TO ACT
The Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, which is helping to treat the koala’s affected by the bushfires tell us that it takes around $7,000 to treat, rehabilitate, and release these creatures back into the wild. Since due to the fires there has been a 20% increase in admissions and as the entire process of prepping them to go back to their natural habitat takes 3-6 months, help is needed more than ever to support koala rescue and survival efforts across Australia. “It’s important to understand it’s not just the animals that have been burned at the fire front. It’s around the edges where there aren’t fires but extreme drought and the extreme heat which has left many of our animals starving and dehydrated out there,” says Dr. Michael Pyne, Senior Veterinarian and General Manager of the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, adding, “the fire and the associated drought has put tremendous pressure on our wildlife and stretched our resources here in the hospital. The time to act is now. You can make a big difference and save the lives of wildlife like Ember (the koala pictured here) and get them the treatment they deserve along with a chance to be released back into the wild.” Rescuers are helping across Australia, some by housing displaced koalas, others by treating their burns, helping to rehabilitate them, to feed them and to create safe spaces for those koalas who have devastatingly lost their claws (koalas survive in the wild using their claws to climb, without which they are rendered helpless) and by saving them directly from the bushfires.
Clinging to the remnants of a tree this lone survivor is a lucky Koala to be alive but his natural habitat is gone. Help save this species. Don’t let Koalas become extinct. Help Australian wildlife survive the bushfires.
Koalas live on eucalyptus leaves but the fires have so damaged the growth that this foliage cannot replenish fast enough to feed these mascots of Australia putting them at risk for extinction.
DO YOUR BIT
Save a koala — or several! Not everyone can rescue, adopt, or foster a koala, but you can do your bit from a distance by donating to several wonderful organizations that are doing their bit to help them survive. Here are just a few: • The Currumbin Wildlife Hospital: Currently one of the busiest wildlife hospitals in the world, they have a skilled and experienced veterinary team, supported by volunteers, as well as fundraising programs that you can participate in. Log on to help koala’s like Ember (pictured) who is just one of the many bushfire victims being treated here. currumbinsanctuary.com.au/hospital • Port Macquarie Koala Hospital: The Koala Hospital focuses on helping koalas all year round and especially now, and features updates on the victims as well as ways for people to help out by donating either time or money. Info: koalahospital.org.au/act-now/donate • The RSCPA in Australia: The organization recently put out a bushfire appeal, asking for donations to help koalas and other wildlife that are currently at their most vulnerable. Info: rspcansw.org.au/bushfire-appe al/?location=stickybardesktop • WIRES Wildlife Rescue: The organization helps to rescue and provide medical care for native Australian animals. WIRES has a special page on their website dedicated to an emergency fund in an effort to help the animal victims of the bushfires. Info: wires.org.au/donate/emergencyfund • The World Wildlife Fund: The Australian branch of this world renowned organization is putting out an appeal as well, asking readers and subscribers to donate to protect and restore koalas’ habitat lost in the fires. Info: wwf.org.au/#gs.qwmzwc • Zoos Victoria: Zoos Victoria, like most of the others on this list has a dedicated page to helping the victims of the current bushfire emergency, so you can donate to help fund emergency veterinary assistance and scientific intervention. Info: donate.zoo.org.au/donation • MARCH 2020
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