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Pet Valu

» Winter 2010

Food Allergy? What YOU should know! Consider Your Nutrition Options

We’ve got new food brands



Your Pet. Your Life. Your Store



Tips for


TIME FOR A NEW PET? Read up on Adoption before you choose

Let the shopping begin ›PAGE 11

Better Pet Pictures Save $$ in January... Happy New Year


Pet Valu

Your Pet. Your Life. Your Store

Did you know that 80% of dog parents and more than 60% of cat, bird and small animal parents bought a gift for their pet within the last year?* Likely you’re not surprised because you’re one of those people! Pets have always been part of the family in my home, so it’s always felt natural to include them at Christmas. In this issue of Companion, we’ve created a 12-page Gift Guide to help you make the perfect choices for your pet’s gift this year. But be warned… you may have trouble picking just one or two of these fun, functional toys and treats. We’ve also got great nutrition information, because a healthy and happy pet starts with great food. We’ve highlighted two brands newly available at your Pet Valu store, plus Dave Summers, our Animal Nutritionist, discusses food allergies and sensitivities. Tips for winter pet safety are on p.23, and not a minute too early with snow and icy cold just around the corner. We look at adopting a new pet, which is a decision not to be taken lightly. We recommend not adopting for Christmas either. Turn to p.24 to find out why. Some Pet Sudoku for kids rounds out this super-sized Christmas issue. We hope you enjoy it. And whether you celebrate with pet presents or not, Happy Holidays from Pet Valu. Pet Adoption



Editor DESIGN Contributors

contact us at: Pet Valu Companion 130 Royal Crest Court Markham, ON L3R 0A1

Email: Product availability will vary by store location. Products may not be exactly as shown. Not responsible for typographical errors. Prices listed are in effect until December 24, 2010 and thereafter are subject to change without notice. Please note that the suggested retail prices referenced in Companion magazine are merely suggestions and may differ in stores. ©2010 PET VALU

In this issue

Libbi Hood


Small Animal Toys

Libbi Hood Daniel Cullen Leah Piltz Dave Summers, Ph.D. Julie Johnston Emily Richardson

in Store 3 WeNew can’t resist these holiday toys Food Allergy vs. Sensitivity 4 Doc looks at food allergies and what you can do Go! Natural Dog & Cat Food 7 Examine 5 Features of this food – new to Pet Valu! Variety 8 Nature’s Dog & Cat Food

Rotational feeding is part of this line – new to Pet Valu!


Guide 2010 11 12Gift pages of great ideas… who’s on your list? to Winter Safety 23 6BrushSteps up on healthy habits for cold weather 2 4 Pet Adoption What you need to think about before adopting Naughty of Nice 26 Treat your small pets with toys they need Pet Photography Tips 27 Smile! Get some great shots this holiday season Kid’Zone 28 Pet Sudoku & Christmas Safety with Pets 30 Christmas A look at the lighter side of celebrating with pets January Savings 31 Come shopping in January to save some cash


Pets & Christmas



*Source: American Pet Products Association (APPA); 2009/2010 National Pet Owners Survey. 2 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

®™ Trademarks used under license.


Can Resist this

N ew in S tore – C hristmas Edition !

y a d i l o H Fun? • Catnip 52558 - $1.99

• Reindeer 43053 $4.99

• Polar Bear 43054 $5.99

Adorable Catnip All cats are both naughty and nice, depending on the day. These stockings and Christmas balls with hints of catnip have got you covered: naughty on one side, nice on the other.

Organic Cotton New seasonally-themed SimplyFido toys. Feel good about giving your dog a plush toy made from organic cotton. The designs include a penguin (shown), a large reindeer and a smaller reindeer/rope combo for environmentally-conscious games of tug. • SimplyFido 49678 - $16.99


Check in-stores for rawhide, plush (adorable stuffed toys, water-bottle crunchers and unstuffed floppers for dogs who like to shake ‘em!), Christmas dog apparel, and a variety of stockings for when you can’t make up your mind!

Classic Squeakers A new squeaker toy on Christmas morning is a tradition in countless canine homes – which of these cuties takes your fancy? The polar bear and reindeer are latex. The decorative bulbs, available in two sizes, are made of rubber. • Large Bulb 59593 - $11.99

Classic Rope A ‘twist’ on toys… an adorable snowman, penguin or candy cane made of rope and available exclusively at Pet Valu. More traditional red & white tug ropes will keep you and your dog busy post-Christmas! Or for champion tuggers, try the all-red version with a sisal inner layer for added toughness. • Medium Tug Rope 53095 - $6.99 • Snowman 43058 - $9.99

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 3


Food Allergy vs.

Food Sensitivity?

How can you tell the difference – and does it really matter anyway? by Dave summers, Ph.D.

Although the incidence of food Allergy vs. Sensitivity allergies in dogs and cats is statistically The most common symptoms of a low, a growing number of pets seem food allergy are: digestive problems including loose stools or chronic to be developing problems that correct diarrhea; inflammation of the skin with a change in diet. Let’s look into causing itching; hair loss; hot spots what you should be watching for and or chewing between the toes; runny your best solutions. eyes; or ear infections. A food

allergy is an immune response, most often to a protein from a particular ingredient in the food. The recommended treatment for a food allergy is to switch to a food with a limited number of protein-containing ingredients, and to ensure the protein ingredients in it are different from those in the previous food. A food sensitivity is defined as an adverse reaction to any food substance. The most common symptoms of a food sensitivity are: digestive problems including loose stools or chronic diarrhea; inflammation of the skin causing itching, hair loss, hot spots, or chewing between the toes; runny eyes; or ear infections. The recommended treatment for a food sensitivity is to switch to a food with a limited number of ingredients, and to ensure as many of the ingredients as possible in it are different from those in the previous food. As I’m sure you noticed, the symptoms and the treatment of a food allergy and a food sensitivity have a lot in common! There are differences between a food allergy and a food sensitivity that are of importance and of interest to a veterinarian or a scientist, but to you and your pet, do the differences really matter? Probably not. For too long I’ve felt the advice given to pet owners has concentrated

4 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

too much on protein because of its association with a food allergy. Looking at alternative foods from a food-sensitivity standpoint can help solve more of the previously perceived food-allergy problems. The only difference is a food allergy concentrates on changing the protein ingredients in the food and a food sensitivity concentrates on changing all the ingredients in the food.

Where to start? First, you need to know all the ingredients your pet has been consuming, including those in its food, treats and supplemental foods. Next, you have to look for alternative foods that have different ingredients than those in the foods and treats you were previously feeding. Trying to change all the ingredients does pose a problem because so many of the minor inclusion or low addition rate ingredients, such as vitamins, are common to most foods. The most practical solution is to first concentrate on changing the major ingredients. In most foods this would mean all the ingredients that come before salt in the ingredient list. Switching to foods with a limited number of major ingredients is favored because having fewer ingredients means there is less chance of having the offending ingredient or ingredients in the new food. There are many good limited-ingredient foods at veterinarian clinics and specialty pet food stores like Pet Valu. The most appropriate single food is one sold by veterinarians that uses a hydrolyzed protein as its only protein source. The advantage of


using a hydrolyzed protein is that the body can not have an immune reaction to it, and therefore if the problem was a food allergy, these foods have the greatest chance of being the solution. Some people wonder if they have to keep their pet on these rather purified foods for the rest of their pet’s life. The answer is really a choice. You can continue to feed a hydrolyzed protein food, or you can use the food to help learn, through trial and error, what other food ingredients can be safely added back to your pet’s diet. There are also canned foods which have very limited ingredient lists. Generally these foods are made from a one-meat ingredient with added vitamins and minerals. Like the hydrolyzed protein food, these canned foods can be used as a permanent solution or as stepping stone to determining what other foods that will provide solutions for the pet. There are also many dry and canned foods that have limited and/or novel ingredients such as duck, rabbit or bison which you can try. The advantage of these foods is they are not as purified and offer a wider choice of products that will potentially alleviate the problem. Included in these potential foods are many of the grain-free dry foods which have alternative carbohydrate sources. In addition, some of the grain-free foods have a limited ingredient list and novel protein sources. You should consider all foods that have different ingredients than the food, or foods, you were previously feeding. This could include raw foods or a limited-ingredient home-prepared diet for which you have complete

There are differences between a food allergy and a food sensitivity that are of importance and of interest to a veterinarian or a scientist, but to you and your pet, do the differences really matter? Probably not. control over ingredients used. But to make your own pet food, you will need to take the time to learn how to properly formulate and prepare a balanced, nutritious diet for your pet that includes all the necessary vitamins and minerals for a healthy system. It’s not a step to be taken lightly, as several foods, such as onions, can be toxic to dogs and cats despite being healthy for humans.

allergy/sensitivity and they also haven’t responded to typical medical treatment? In that case, they might be an allergy or food sensitivity. If you have questions or want to learn more about food-related issues, talk to a pet specialist at your local Pet Valu store. Because regardless of how many pets are proven to have food allergies – and the percentage is surprisingly low – what really matters is how your pet is performing on the food you’re providing.

How to Test? After selecting an alternative food, the next step is to feed it and see what happens. Sounds simple, and it is simple, but it requires patience. Results could appear within days for digestive problems, but it is more likely to take 4 to 8 weeks before a positive change can be seen, especially if it is a skin condition. A good rule is to trial any new food at least 8 weeks unless you notice the problem is getting worse instead of better. When you see one of the many symptoms of a food allergy or a sensitivity manifest in your pet, you shouldn’t jump to the conclusion that the problem is food-related. There are many other medical and environmental reasons which could lead to similar symptoms, so in addition to considering alternative foods you should have a veterinarian examine your pet to rule out other causes. If you do suspect a food-related cause, stop and think about what your pet has been eating. Do the symptoms appear to be one associated with food


It can take 4 to 8 weeks to see results from a new food!

Dr. Dave Summers, Pet Valu Nutritionist, holds a Ph.D. in Animal Nutrition from the University of Edmonton. Dave has worked in the pet industry for 25 years, developing innovative pet foods and consulting about pet nutrition. As a Nutritionist and also as a pet parent to 2-year-old Pug-Tzsu “Bailey,” pets come first to Dave.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 5

A pet food first for Canadian dogs! PRO PLAN® Shredded Blend – the first multi-textured combination of crunchy kibble and tender shredded pieces – complete nutrition with an exceptional taste experience your dog will love, or your money back.



WHY IS A HIGH PROTEIN DIET IMPORTANT FOR CATS? As strict carnivores, cats metabolize high levels of protein more efficiently and require lower levels of carbohydrates. High levels of protein are necessary for: • Strong immune system • Strong, firm muscles and energy • Strong bones, joints and teeth • Healthy digestion • Healthy heart • Bright, healthy eyes • Soft, shiny coat




P E T nutrition

Go! Natural Dog & Cat Food

New to Pet Valu stores, Go! Natural pet foods could be just the solution you’ve been looking for.


o! Natural pet food is produced to provide you, the consumer, with “5 Significant Performance Features.” › High quality ingredients: the food is produced with government certified, high quality ingredients including fruits and vegetables (instead of wheat and corn) and hormone free, grain fed chicken and west coast salmon. › Nutrient Density: with up to 50% more concentrated meat protein, Go! Natural kibble is designed to meet your pet’s daily energy requirements using a smaller quantity of food (you can feed “up to 40% less,” according to the company literature). Another promised benefit is smaller, firmer stools – a plus for any dog or cat owner! › One food for one life: the food is designed for all pets, at all stages of their lives. › Specific Solutions: many of the Go! Natural pet foods are specifically formulated to meet the needs of your dog or cat. Whether your pet is underweight, a finicky eater or if your dog has allergies, Go! Natural has a food that will help (see the listing of formulas on the right for more details). › Quality Assurance: Finally, Petcurean Pet Nutrition, the makers of Go! Natural, promises strict food safety measures at government approved and audited facilities to ensure their foods are always healthy and safe for your pet.

by libbi hood

DOG FORMULAS Chicken, Fruit & Vegetable - Also in canned formula

Great for all dogs, including Performance Dogs and those that are Underweight

• “up to 50% more meat” • A wide range of nutrient-dense ingredients to provide well-rounded nutrition for life. Ingredients include chicken, brown rice, oatmeal, salmon meal, egg, potato, apples, carrots, cranberries

Duck Formula


• Rotation Formula - great option to switch to and provide variety in your dog‘s diet • Duck is the first and only meat protein source • Oatmeal and whole oats support skin health • Novel ingredietns: Quinoa and Kamut Flakes • Standard list of Holistic ‘Nos’: No Wheat, Corn, Soy, artificial colors or flavors, animal by-products, beef, chicken, • Also no egg

Grain Free Endurance Formula (Turkey, Chicken and Duck) - Also in canned formula

Allergies Finicky Eater Performance Dog

• 70% meats and 0% grains • Contains turkey, chicken, salmon, duck • Slow cooked at low temperatures to preserve maximum nutrients • Doesn’t have high levels of protein and fat found in some grain free diets • Grain Free diets with safe, appropriate levels of protein and fat may be right for your dog in situations where: 1.You suspect a grain allergy 2.You are concerned about food recalls involving toxins in grains 3.Your dog is active, on the go and sustaining long periods of activity (Endurance)

Salmon & Oatmeal - Salmon formula in canned - Freshwater Trout in canned - Grain Free in canned


• Innovative diet with 25% Salmon - plus contains only • 1 Novel Protein Source • 1 Novel Carbohydrate Source • 1 Novel Oil Source • Salmon and oatmeal both great for soothing and benefiting skin and coat

Chicken, Fruit & Vegetable - Chicken & Vegetable in canned - Salmon & Vegetable in canned

Underweight Cats Conditioning

• A wide range of nutrient-dense ingredients to provide well rounded nutrition for life • Chicken, brown rice, oatmeal, salmon, apples, carrots, potato, cranberries, egg

Chicken, Turkey & Duck Grain Free - Also in canned food

Finicky Eater

• 80% meat - with chicken, turkey, duck, & salmon too • Grain Free • Unexpected ingredients like banana, broccoli, lentil beans, cottage cheese, pumpkin • Slow cooked at low temperatures to preserve maximum nutrients

Finicky Eater

• 80% meat, 0% grains • Trout, herring, salmon


Pick up a product brochure in store to learn the specifics of each Go! Natural formula.

Freshwater Trout - Grain Free - Also in canned food

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 7


Nature’s Variety

Dog & Cat Food

Introducing a new line of dog and cat food, holistic in nature and designed to offer your pet variety with ease. by libbi hood


our Pet Valu store now carries a wide selection of Nature’s Variety dog and cat foods. This range of foods, including dry kibble in holistic and grain-free formulas, canned food in holistic meaty loaf, Homestyle and grain-free, plus treats. A small but growing percentage of stores also carry Nature’s Variety raw foods. This line-up is a bit different from other pet food lines. It’s developed to mix and match flavors and forms (dry, wet or raw), without the need to transition every time a change is made. If you’re a pet parent who doesn’t want to feed the same food all the time, you’ll want to read on to learn about the benefits of Nature’s Variety. 

 Wholesome Prairie Line The Prairie line-up of pet foods promises “Pure, Authentic Nutrition for Dogs and Cats.” These are holistic foods, created without corn, wheat or soy, and including quality meat, poultry or fish protein, hearty whole grains and healthy fruits and vegetables.  Prairie dry kibble foods are tasty by nature of the ingredients used to create them. For example, the first five ingredients in the Lamb Meal & Oatmeal Medley cat food are lamb meal, canola oil, oatmeal, brown rice, and flaxseed. Plus it includes freeze dried lamb heart, broccoli, spinach, salmon oil, blueberries, alfalfa sprouts, duck eggs, quail eggs and butternut squash. Similar hearty and varied ingredients go into the dry dog foods, including the unique New Zealand Venison Meal & Millet Medley.  In addition, the dry kibble is covered with an exclusive freeze dried raw coating to further enhance the flavor and nutrition of the food. See Raw Bio-Coating (page 10) for more details about this freeze dried enhancement. The canned dog and cat foods are available in a Homestyle stew format, plus the dog foods are also available in a traditional meaty loaf. Each canned food is more than 85% meat, plus fruit, vegetables, vitamins and minerals. Both formats are suitable as a meal in itself or as a topper to dry food for an extra treat.  Each dog and cat food, whether raw, meaty loaves or stew in cans, or dry kibble, are complete and balanced for all life stages and all breeds. This means you can feed just the one food and your pet will receive all the nutrients required to lead a healthy life. But with Nature’s Variety, every food is specially formulated for rotation feeding so your pet doesn’t have to eat the same thing every day.    8 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Why Include Freeze-Dried Rabbit Bone? The Nature’s Variety website explains this ingredient best: “Freeze dried ground rabbit bone is an excellent source of minerals, essential fatty acids, proteins, and enzymes, and has always been an important part of a dog and cat’s natural diet. Bone contains calcium and phosphorus in the correct ratio and is the most bio-available source. It is also a significant source of Glucosamine and Chondroitin, naturally occurring compounds associated with joint health. The bone has undergone the natural freeze drying process. Freeze drying is a food preservation process that requires no chemicals or additives and effectively retains the nutritional value, color, flavor and cellular structure of the food. It is a process whereby frozen food is placed under a vacuum and water sublimated off.”   Chicken and lamb bones are included in various formulas for the same healthy, natural reasons.  


Why Put Clay in Pet Food?

 Grain-free Instinct Line The Instinct lineup promises “Pure, Instinctive Nutrition,” as it’s your pet’s instinctive nature to eat more meat, poultry or fish protein and no grain. Each formula is both grain-free and gluten-free, which may help provide relief from the symptoms of food allergies or sensitivities. The unique proteins will help too, such as Rabbit Meal and Duck Meal formulas.  To help you see exactly what you’re getting with Instinct foods, the front panel packaging clearly states the percentages of ingredient groups. For example, the Rabbit Meal Formula for dogs includes 70% Pure Animal Ingredients and Nutritious Oils, 30% Vegetables and Fruits, fortified with Vitamins and Chelated Minerals, and 0% Grain, Instinct formulas Gluten and Potato.  feature the unique Without potato as the traditional non-grain carbohydrate, what’s included in its place? The answer is: tapioca! All Incarbohydrate tapioca, stinct dry formulas use tapioca as their main carbohydrate, minimizing the chance providing the energy your dog or cat needs while minimizof food sensitivities. ing the chance of sensitivities by using a hypoallergenic starch. Other ingredients in the dried foods may include salmon meal, pumpkinseeds, sun-cured alfalfa meal, freeze dried pork liver and heart, and freeze dried ground rabbit bone. For an explanation of why bones are included in your pet’s food, as well as why some ingredients are freeze dried, see “Why Include Freeze Dried Rabbit Bone?” (p.8). As with the Prairie line, Instinct dry kibble features the freeze dried raw coating exclusive to Nature’s Variety.  Instinct canned foods are 95% meat (including liver) and 5% fruits, vegetables and other wholesome ingredients like ground flaxseeds, vitamins and minerals. They are complete and balanced, like all Nature’s Variety foods. Both the canned and dry foods are specially formulated for rotation feeding too. 

It’s true! Nature’s Variety dry and canned foods include montmorillonite clay. This is another unique and beneficial ingredient that you don’t see in every pet food. The Nature’s Variety website states: “Montmorillonite is a clay that is primarily colloidal silicate, which contains over 50 ultra-trace mineral compounds including Antimony, Barium, Beryllium, Boron, Bromine, Cadmium, Carbon, Cerium, Cesium, Chloride, Chromium, Cobalt, Copper, Dysprosium, Fluoride, Gadolinium, Gallium, Germanium, Iodine, Lanthanum, Lithium, Manganese, Neodymium, Nickel, Phosphorus, Rhenium, Rubidium, Samarium, Scandium, Silicon, Silver, Strontium, Sulfur, Tellurium, Thallium, Thorium, Tin, Titanium, Vanadium, Ytterbium, Yttrium, Zinc, and Zirconium. Feed studies by the Veterinary Medical Diagnostics Laboratory at Texas A&M University have shown that Montmorillonite clays can sequester (bind) aflatoxins contained in grains and oilseeds.”

 Treats As part of their full line-up, Nature’s Variety offers two forms of treats. Instinct freeze dried treats are shelf-stable raw food that doesn’t need to be frozen. These highly palatable and nutritious treats, in four flavors including venison and chicken formulas, are suitable for both dogs and cats and provide all the natural goodness and taste of raw food. Instinct also has a line of bone-shaped dog biscuits that are both grain- and gluten-free, and fortified with beneficial microorganisms for intestinal health. Wholesome flavors include Duck Meal, Sweet Potatoes and Cinnamon, or Rabbit Meal, Apples and Ginger. (continued on page 10)

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 9


 Raw Bio-Coating

All Nature's Variety dry kibble formulas include a freeze dried raw coating for the benefits of raw.

Nature’s Variety offers both frozen and freeze dried raw food as part of its overall feeding program. They also use the freeze dried raw food as a coating on all Instinct and Prairie kibble. This BioCoating provides some of the benefits of feeding raw food with the convenience of feeding dry kibble. But if the coating is made of raw food, is it safe? With Nature’s Variety, the answer is yes. Nature’s Variety uses high pressure processing (HPP), a unique food safety process, to kill harmful bacteria including salmonella and e. coli 0157:H7 while preserving the beneficial characteristics of raw food. This process is 100% natural and is recognized by both the FDA and USDA as an anti-pathogen treatment. HPP has its basis in nature: it was discovered that harmful bacteria cannot survive at deep sea levels, where there is high water pressure. It’s a cold process, leaving all the best parts of the food intact. This includes the antioxidants, healthy oils, food enzymes, phytonutrients and living beneficial microorganisms. Nature’s Variety is one of the few raw food manufacturers – and the only one currently available in Canada – using this process to ensure their raw foods are free of harmful bacteria and completely safe for humans to handle. Adding a raw food to your pet’s diet, whether in a rotation of pet foods or through the Bio-Coating on Instinct and Prairie kibble, helps to provide your dog or cat with the nutrition they evolved with. In the wild the ancestors of dogs and cats would have eaten mostly fresh, raw meat, with organs and bones, and a small percentage of fruits and vegetables. They would not have eaten a diet high in carbohydrates from excessive grain or starchy vegetables. Cooking food (including dry and canned pet foods) can modify the biochemical properties of the ingredients or destroy vital nutrients. In raw diets the proteins, natural vitamins and minerals are intact and more bio-available, meaning your pet can digest them better and enjoy greater benefit from them. Plus, Nature’s Variety Raw Frozen Diets is the only line of raw pet foods to contain diets which have passed AAFCO Protocol Feeding Trials, meaning they are scientifically proven to be complete and balanced for your pet. AAFCO feeding trials is one of the standards by which dry and canned pet foods are measured. Approximately 20% of Pet Valu stores currently sell raw food – some offer Nature’s Variety and some offer other brands. As you consider changing to raw food or adding some to your pet’s diet, for all the benefits listed above, watch for it in your local Pet Valu store. 10 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Approximately 20% of Pet Valu stores currently sell raw food. Watch for it at your local store and consider adding the benefits of raw food to your pet's diet.

 Rotation Diet The basic idea of a rotation diet is that consuming a variety of foods – meats, fruits, vegetables, etc. – will provide a wider variety of nutrient sources, and therefore greater overall well being. This applies to both people and pets. All Nature’s Variety foods, including dry kibble, canned foods, raw diets and treats, are specially formulated for rotation feeding. This allows you to easily vary the proteins (rabbit, venison, chicken, duck, beef, lamb or fish) as well as the ‘form’ of food – kibble for convenience and ‘crunch,’ cans or raw for a different texture and increased water intake. Because the foods are meant to be combined, there is less chance of the stomach upset and diarrhea that often accompanies a change in your pet’s food. The benefits of rotation feeding include: • a robust GI tract able to tolerate change for fewer incidences of stomach upset • increased water intake, a key to maintaining urinary health • reduced pickiness as your pet won’t be accustomed to only one food

Who's On Your List this Year? Your Pet Valu Shopping Guide 2010 0 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Tough Dog Whether little or large, if your dog has a big presence, he’ll love this stuff!




Real leather collars with studs – for your dog’s tough image! 14" 46106 $17.99

Durable tug toy with a squeak that motivates your big dog to keep tugging. 48809 $19.99

Multiple layers resist tearing. Also bunny, raccoon, skunk & octopus. 43235-9 $19.99

megalast long dog

Bowser Rectangle Bed

KONG Genius

The name says it: long lasting chew in a long shape too! Asst colors. 53058 $9.99

Mosaic pattern bed – large size – is ideal for your big dog. 53488 $99.99

Stuffable, problem-solving fun from a brand you trust. 53045-8 $11.99-14.99




Soft play toys with 4 layers of material for ‘tuff-ness’. 52565 $29.99

Giant cow bone for a naturally good time – chew on that! 54176 $19.99

Ideal for strong chewers, with squeakers that last. 52534-5 $11.99-17.99

12 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Fun & Funky

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

If your gift-choosing radar is more offbeat than other pet parents, you’ll love these fun & funky choices for cats and dogs.


Hamburger Combo Chew


Three organic catnip fishies in a traditional slide-top tin. 52456 $12.99

Adorable small animal chew with wooden burger & crispy loofah bites too. 42075 $3.99

Iconic characters are as much for your enjoyment as your dog's! 52478-9 $7.99



Wiley Tug, Toss & Play

Irresistible! Look for the duck, monkey, bull & more. 52845-9 52894-8 $4.99

New designs make meal time fun! Dishwsher safe. 59992-3 $5.99

Rubber balls and super-strong straps for endless enjoyment. 53077-9 $8.99-19.99

Salsa Monsters



Fuzzy, funny monster toys have squeakers too. Asst. colors. 43194 $19.99

Electronic ball dips and swings its feathers around your cat. 52699 $24.99

Cheese, whale or fish – 100% recycled materials & includes organic catnip! 75191-3 $17.99-27.99

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 13

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Pampered Pet If only the best will do for your smart, beautiful dog or cat, look no further for great gift ideas.




Bestselling ‘bones’ pattern on a high-quality Bowser bed. 59201-4 $79.99-139.99

Shampoo, conditioners & revolutionary odorneutralizing sprays for your dog & home. 63221-31 $12.99

In teal or red, with detachable hood & fleece lining. 59161-5 $39.99




Appealing design that entices pets with fresh, moving water. 59996 $59.99

Truly the best-of-the-best in de-shedding tools. Asst sizes. 63116-8 $52.99-74.99

New designs make meal time fun! Dishwasher safe. 59994-5 $12.99-14.99

Nylon Collars



Classic nylon collars in varied colors and sizes. Selection will vary by store.

‘Puzzle’ toys that challenge your dog to find treats. 49107 $49.99

Gorgeous, multi-texture scratcher in a fun shape. 75442 $34.99

14 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Active Dog

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Great gift ideas for dogs that like to run, tug, fetch and play. If your dog’s on the move, he or she will love these options.

Ruffwear grip trex boots

West Paw Design Zisc

Chuck-it Launcher

Rugged high-grip sole and mesh upper with Sure Cinch closure. 61801-9 $59.99

Zogoflex material is soft on your dog’s mouth but withstands daily play. 52625 $17.99

Classic. You and your dog know what to do. 49184 $17.99

Soft-Flex Vinyl Toys

100% Natural Rope Toys

Planet Dog Sports Balls

Soft yet durable vinyl toy with molded-in squeaker for safety. 53361-5 $7.99

Four different shapes of jute & cotton mix tug toys. 42881-4 $9.99-12.99

Do you play? Soccer, football & tennis ball chew toys go the distance. 53036-8 $10.99-18.99

Dr. Maggie Paw Protector


Deer Antler Chews

When active dogs need TLC, try easy-to-use paw protector. 79206 $17.99

No cutesy features, just warmth & protection for busy dogs. 62535 $42.99-54.99

Naturally-shed antlers are long-lasting chews with no odor! 56281-8 $11.99-24.99

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 15

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010



Everyone needs treats at Christmas time – even your pets. Choose from biscuits, bones, cookies, and even salad bowls for your small animals.

T r eat im a r e n a ge s to sc a o t le !

Claudia’s Canine Cuisine

Nature’s Variety Instinct Biscuits

Wagatha’s Organic Dog Treats

Gorgeous gourmet cookies made for dogs. Selection will vary by store.

Cute bone-shaped biscuits are grain-free. 29942-4,7 $6.49

Gourmet biscuits in great flavors for Bedtime, Breakfast and more. 30495-9, 30501 $9.99

Northern Biscuit

zuke's mini naturals

Classic Freeze-Dried Liver

Tasty, crunchy, all-natural biscuits. Choose from a multitude of flavors. 28720 $6.79

Healthy, all-natural moist dog treats. Made in the U.S.A. 56924 $5.99

Benny Bully’s original liver is loved by dogs everywhere. 57724 $6.99

Wellness WellBars

TrailMix for dogs

Performatrin Ultra Biscuits

Wholesome, oven-baked snacks are wheat-free. 30300-3 $9.99

PureBites freeze-dried trail mix with liver, green bean and sweet potato. 55385 $5.49

Three flavors of holistic treats: Peanut Butter, Fieldberry or Salmon. 30010 $8.99

16 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Peter’s Rabbit Salad Bowl

Small Animal Healthy Bits

Ecotrition Veggie Puffs

Edible woven grass bowl packed with Timothy Hay and dried fruits. 74053 $5.99

A snack of fruit, nuts and seeds for rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas. 50897 $5.99

Colored puffs give your small animal a crunchy treat. 50250 $5.49

Yogurt Dipped Bird Treats

Feline Greenies


Colorful treats offer extreme flavors, real fruit pieces and yogurt coating. 42336,8 $4.49

Dental treats to clean teeth and freshen breath. Taste great too! 56242-6 $3.29

Classic treat every cat adores. Multiple flavors available. 57463 $1.99

Buddy Biscuits

Now! Cat Treats

Pet Greens

Adorable biscuits in chicken, PB or sweet potato. Also available in Soft & Chewy. 30454-9 $7.99

Grain-free, holistic treats made with deboned turkey, duck and salmon. 56232 $2.99

Grain-free, holistic, wheat grass treats made for dogs and cats. 30475-9, 30502-5, $4.99-12.99

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 17

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Feline Friendly Finicky cats demand only the coolest pet products. Toys, beds and scratchers that look and feel great.

Cat Collars

Jeepers Creepers Rat

Rope Around Scratcher

Go eco-friendly with super-soft, 100% soy fiber collars. 42454-7 $9.99

Large, 8� rat comes with premium catnip. Your cats will flip! 53012 $8.99

Hanging scratchers are effective, attractive and easily portable. 56429 $12.99

Catit Cat fountain

BALL of furry fury

Twinkle TwistyMouse

Moving water is irresistible to cats & drinking water is healthy. 52605 $54.99

The ball rolls, the mouse squeaks‌ the chase is on. 52377 $9.99

Stretchy-spring mouse lights up and squeaks for nighttime play. 51771 $6.99

Catnip Coverup Bed

KONG Wild Tails

Petstages Cheese Chase

Feline hideaway includes a catnip pouch & organic catnip. 58346 $34.99

The long, feathery tail entices your cat to play. 43103 $4.49

Inner and outer ball tracks, plus a catnip mouse on a spring. 52872 $22.99

18 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Small & Feathered Friends

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

You’ll find fun, homes and snacks for birds, bettas, rabbits, hamsters and more at Pet Valu stores.

Shred-X Bird Toy

Petville Plaza

Shred-X Slice

Zoo-Max bird toys provide healthy shredding options. 41416 $4.99

Your hamster or mouse can have this home that even humans will envy. 74292 $38.99

A 12” tower of colored wood and shreddable cardboard. 41419 $6.99

Petville Skywheel

Toys from Trees

Beautiful Betta Bowl

An exercise wheel ‘in the sky’ for your favorite small animal. 74293 $44.99

Fruit-shaped, all natural small animal chews made of wood. 74892-6 $2.99-5.99

This desktop aquarium includes a glass bowl and LED light. 70965 $16.99

Zoo-Max Spirale

run about ball

Snak Shak Activity Log

Multiple textures for exercise and lots of rope for natural preening activity. 41417 $10.99

Fun & exercise for your pet, entertainment for you! 42113 $10.99

It’s a 100% edible chew treat plus a natural rodent hide away. Sm. 50564 $9.99

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 19

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Planet Earth Eco-friendly and charity-conscious pet products you can be proud to give.

Bowser Eco-Futon


Beba Chews

“Eco-Tech” polar fleece & stuffed with “super-loft” recycled fiber. 59177-86, 59191-5 $59.99-109.99

Fully-recyclable cardboard cat scratcher. It won’t last forever and you won’t mind! 75368 $12.99

Treat dispenser & squeaker toy with 20% donated to 4 different charities. Asst. colors. 52361 $14.99

Simply Jane by Jane Goodall

Eco-Nap Plush Pads

Yeowww! Organic Catnip Apple Hand-sewn in the USA and stuffed FULL of premium, organically grown catnip. 52453 $8.99

Toys made with natural material and supporting the Washable beds with fabric made from postJane Goodall Institute. 48311-6 $11.99-19.99 consumer recycled plastic. 59235-7 $49.99-79.99

Simply Fido organic toys

Planet Dog Orbo & Orbee

Biodegradable PAWZ Boots

Made with certified organic cotton. Certified non-toxic coloring. 49989 $18.99

Earth-motif is cute, $500,000+ donated to animal charities is even better. 52852, 52857 $11.99-12.99

Reusable, disposable, waterproof dog boot that’s 100% biodegradable! 12 pk 69650-6 $19.99

20 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

For Homebodies

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

If you and your dog and cat like to laze the day away on the couch (and who doesn’t?), these are the gift choices for you!


Dog Whisperer DVDs

Bone or Pawprint Bowls

Assorted textures, colors and sizes; made from Bio-foam. 58714-5, 58726-9, $24.99-49.99

For the human homebody, curl up on the couch with Cesar Millan DVDs. 88572-6 $16.99-26.99

Two sizes of cute, classic bowls in soothing tones of blue, green, or pecan. 75716-21 $5.99-8.99

Sleepeez Plush Toys

Sam & Coco Fashions

Oster Grooming Tools Selection of brushes, including this plastic pin brush for detangling. 63122-3 $17.99-19.99

Giant heads toys with squeakers to cuddle-up with. The Brown Nordic Sweater is perfect for lounging. Limited quantities. 49235 $6.99 59086-90 $19.99

Heart Sweater

Dog Gone Smart Beds

seagrass scratcher

Black & white sweater has a colored button accent. Sweet for indoor lounging. 60574-8 $19.99

Nanotechnology creates invisible barrier to repel stains. Asst colors. 58851-3 $79.99-99.99

Visually-fun cat furniture with multiple scratchers and danglies. 75362 $69.99

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 21

pet valu SHOPPING Guide 2010

Stocking Stuffers Every dog and cat should have a little stocking all their own. Fill it with these fun and fabulous products.

West Paw Design Mini Hurley

Adorable Mini Friends

Krazy Kitty Cat tails

A mini-size Hurley for small dogs and puppies. Perfect for stockings. 52638 $10.99

Doggie Froggie and Puppy Teddy Bear, just 3” long, are irresistible. 43191,3 $6.99

Colorful soft toy is stuffed full of catnip. 52328 $5.99

Catnip Christmas

PetStages Mini Cool Chew

‘Duffle’ Poop Bags

Classic cotton-look catnip toys with holiday motif. 52559 $1.99

Fun, colorful chew for toy breeds. Can be frozen to soothe teething pups. 53073 $7.99

This tiny duffle bag holds tie-handle bags on a roll. Attaches to any leash or loop. 59305 $5.99

Mini Rope Bones

DuraFlex Football

LamieDoodles Mini

For the tiny dogs in your life, give them a mini rope to tug. 75461 $3.49

Flexible rubber squeak toy with nubs and spikes is soft on the mouth. 42877 $5.99

Sweet little plush toy for dogs that want to snuggle, not chew. 49811 $4.99

22 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

Not all products will be in all stores. Most can be easily special ordered.


Steps to


inter weather has an impact on how we live. Even though dogs and cats are covered in fur, winter can be hard on them too. Follow these safety tips to help your pets stay safe and warm.

Winter Safety

1. Keep your pet warm & dry Most dogs love playing outside in the winter. Their fur coats offer some protection, but many breeds were not meant to be outside in sub-zero temperatures (especially breeds with short hair). A coat will help. For extra protection, look for a coat with a waterproof shell, like the Trilogy jacket from RC Pet Products that has a waterproof removable outer layer and a lining of double-layer fleece. To keep cats protected from the harsh winter elements, it is recommended to keep them indoors, especially on the coldest days. Cats are vulnerable to snow and cold, and can suffer from hypothermia or frostbite as a result. If your cat is an outdoor-only cat, provide extra food so that he can bulk-up to fight the cold, and provide a shelter that protects from the wind and snow.

Winter is coming! Is your pet protected? by leah piltz


2. Protect your dog’s paws

Dr. Maggie Paw Protector

Even the heartiest sled dogs wear boots in the winter, and a town/city dog needs them even more. In the winter, a sidewalk’s cold cement and the salt used to de-ice it wreaks havoc on a dog’s paws, causing them to dry out, crack and bleed. Prevent this discomfort with dog boots or a product like Dr. Maggie Paw Protector before your dog goes outside. This product works by providing a moisturizing wax barrier between your dog’s paws and the elements. Always wipe your dog’s paws when she comes back in the house to remove excess salt.

79206, $17.99

Paw Thaw 53990, $11.99

Lazer Brite, Collars 47281-303, $7.99 - $15.99

3. Check for cats in your car If your cat goes outside in winter, she may want to be out for hours at a stretch. Cats are notorious nappers and even when outside, yours might be looking for a spot to catch some zzz’s. Unfortunately this napping place is often underneath the hood of a car – a place that’s protected from the wind and offers residual heat if your car has just been running. This hiding spot can become deadly when you start your car. The cat can get burned or caught in the moving parts, with tragic results. Throughout the winter, bang on your car hood before getting in your car. This gives napping cats a chance to wake up and escape to safety.

4. Beware of dangerous chemicals Road salt may be a winter necessity, but it is bad for your pet’s paws and it can be hazardous if ingested. It contains potentially dangerous chemicals, such as chlorine, which pets inadvertently lick off their paws. Use a pet-safe product like Paw Thaw instead of salt at home. Paw Thaw uses a biodegradable formula instead of harmful chemicals to quickly melt the ice. Antifreeze is another chemical danger. Pets love the taste and will ingest it, which is often fatal. Keep antifreeze in a sealed container where your pets can’t reach it, and always clean up spills in the garage or driveway.

5. Improve your pet’s visibility Winter brings long, dark nights. Improve your pet’s visibility with reflective collars and leashes, like the ones from Lazer Brite, which allow your pet to be seen from up to 600 feet away!

6. Groom your pet more often Due to dry winter air, both outside and in your home, your pet’s coat dries out, which causes painful matting and itchy, flaky skin. Regular brushing, shampooing and trimming prevent these problems from occurring and will keep their coat healthier. A healthy coat provides warmth and protection, so your dogs and cats can really enjoy winter! Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 23


Pet Adoption Everything from choosing a pet, to bringing them home! by emily richardson

Puppies are adorable, but they require more attention than mature dogs

Adopting a new pet is an exciting time. Choosing the Best Pet for You Whether an adorable puppy or kitten, The first step in adopting a pet is or a more mature addition, it can bring deciding what type you want. This can be the hardest step as there are so new energy and happiness to your home. many factors to consider. But as all pet owners know, every pet requires a commitment that shouldn’t be Your Lifestyle taken lightly. When you do your research The way you live your life is a very important factor to consider when and discuss your new pet among your choosing a pet. Things you need to whole family, you’re setting you and your consider include your time compet up for a long, successful relationship. mitments, if you have other animals

Pets Are Not Gifts

Choosing to adopt a new pet is a serious decision that deserves consideration. Pets should not be surprise gifts to spouses or even young children. They will benefit from being part of the decision process, rather than being surprised. You could also be making assumptions that your loved ones will want the same pet that you do – or any pet for that matter. With Christmas around the corner, you may be thinking ‘new pet’ under the tree but it’s almost always a bad idea. When your new pet joins your household, you should aim for a calm environment and a consistent schedule to make the transition smoother for people and pets. Christmas time is almost never calm or consistently scheduled! If your heart is set on a new pet at Christmas, consider ‘surprising’ your family with only pet supplies and the promise that the search for a new family pet will begin in January. THAT would be a happy new year for everyone involved – especially your newly adopted pet.

24 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

already in the household, if you have small children or elderly family members living with you, if you spend time outdoors, and your overall activity level. If you have a timeconsuming job and work 60 hours a week, a young puppy will not be a good fit for you. Instead a bird, or an older cat would suit your lifestyle better. An older dog would also be an option if you are near home to let it out during your 12 hour work days. If you spend a lot of time outdoors a dog could be the perfect companion. If you have small children, it will be an important factor that will influence your choice. Large or hyper dogs could accidently harm a small child, so a cat or a quiet lap dog might be more suitable for you. You want to introduce a pet that your children will love, not fear! It’s important to really assess your lifestyle before getting a pet as the way you live ultimately impacts the way your pet lives too. You want your pet to be the happiest they can be, so compatibility between you two and your environment is key.

Cat vs. Dog Cats and dogs are very different animals, and therefore are very different pets. In order to decide which one is right for you there are several options you need to consider. Are you an outdoor person, or do you prefer the indoors? If you prefer the outdoors, you will probably enjoy walking a dog once a day. Are you willing to put the effort into training your pet? If not, a cat would be better for you as there is not much training involved with them. Finally, its important to think of your pet’s personality matching your needs. Cats are often independent and enjoy their alone time, while dogs on the other hand, love interaction. Of course, there are plenty of other options than just cats and dogs. Birds are fairly stationary pets (except for when you let them fly to exercise) that can provide chatter and company. Many adults prefer rabbits to cats – they have a similar cuddly, curious nature but they are contained in cages when you’re not home and they are extremely quiet. Other small animals and fish are great options too.

Small vs. Large Choosing between a small or large dog is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when selecting a pet. The size of your pet can impact many things such as, ease of travel, need for exercise, the amount and cost of food, how well it fits in your house/apartment, etc. A larger dog can provide security, however a smaller dog can provide comfort too and may be easier to cuddle.


Bringing Your Pet Home  What You’ll Need. Adding a pet to your family means that you’ll need to purchase supplies, such a bed, possibly a crate depending on the age of your pet, toys, food, treats, a litter box, a leash, etc. Also, you’re going to need to find a good veterinarian. Ask your friends and family for references, or use the vet recommended by your breeder or adoption organization.

 What to Expect. Don’t expect your new pet to Mature vs. Young

Pure vs. Mixed

While adopting a puppy or kitten is really fun and a great learning experience for your family, there are benefits to adopting mature animals as well. Puppies are adorable, but they require a lot more attention than mature dogs as they need house and behavior training. Most older dogs are already house trained and can recognize basic commands, and therefore need less constant monitoring. Animal shelters always have plenty of mature cats ready for adoption. These are usually well-behaved, friendly cats with established personalities. Shelters will help you find the perfect mature cat to bring home.

Both purebred dogs and a mixed breed dogs have positives and negatives, it is all about what you’re looking for. With purebreds you have a better chance of knowing the general physical and behavioral characteristics such as size and personality. However, with purebreds you also have a greater risk of genetic health problems. Mixed breeds are thought to have more genetic diversity and therefore are less prone to health problems. But purebred vs. mixed breed is a very personal decision when you’re adopting a new dog.

Adopt the Pet of your Dreams Once you’ve decided on the type of pet you want, you need to go out and get him or her! There are several options available. Make sure to research your options online and visit your future pet to make sure you’re getting your pet from a reputable organization or breeder.

 Breeders. For puppies or pure-bred cats, your best option is to find a reputable breeder. You should be able to meet the breeder, see their facilities, learn the genetic history of your puppy and meet both mom and litter several times before taking one home. Many breeders will also offer followup services to ensure your new puppy is fitting in with the family and lifestyle.

form a strong relationship with your family right in the beginning. Whether you’ve adopted a young kitten or puppy, or a more mature animal, this transition is going to take some time. Once everyone in your household gets to know each other and are comfortable in their environment, the bond will grow naturally.

 Training. For dogs and puppies, training is essential in order to have an enjoyable experience with your pet. Make sure that your pet is properly trained, either by taking classes or by self-teaching your pup. Plan how you will train and discipline your new pet before bringing him home, so his experience within your family will be consistent and positive.

 Enjoy your Pet. Finally, make sure you enjoy your pet when you bring her home. Spend time with her, and soon you won’t be able to picture your life without her! Adoption can provide a young pet with a family to grow up with, or a mature pet with a second chance. The health and wellness benefits of having pets are also well documented. Either way, adopting a pet provides benefits for both the new parents and the new pets.

Introduce a pet that your children will love

 Rescue Organizations/ Shelters. Rescue organizations and shelters provide a wonderful service by rescuing and housing homeless dogs and cats. Many of these facilities hold adoption events and also regular hours where you can visit and interact with the animals before deciding which is perfect for you. Most organizations will screen behavior and health of the animals, providing you with a lot of information to help you make the right decision. Some even cover the cost of spaying/neutering and vaccinations, asking you to pay only a nominal adoption fee. Also, many organizations screen the prospective adoptee rigorously to ensure that their animals go to an appropriate home. Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 25


Smart Toys for Birds

NaughtyorNice? Whether they occasionally misbehave or not, remember to spoil your small pets at Christmas, too! Dogs and cats by Julie Johnston

• Wood Toys 42074 - $3.99

aren’t the only ones who need to play. For small pets, toys aren’t just about fun. Play is an important and stimulating part of a healthy lifestyle.

Chew Toys

Chew toys are important for all rodents from mice to guinea pigs, as well as rabbits (who are lagomorphs, not rodents). Often made of wood, these toys satisfy the natural urge to chew and ensure teeth are properly worn down, as they continue to grow throughout your pet's life. Providing chews toys will also help to keep your pet from chewing less desirable options, such as household furniture and power cords. Remember to replace chew toys if they become soiled.

our pet expert's

• Jungle Talk 71831- $7.99

our pet expert's



• Run-About Ball 42112 - $6.99

Bunny Cuddles

Everyone knows bunnies love to chew. But did you know that many rabbits also enjoy plush toys? They snuggle up with them and also enjoy flinging them around! Really! My six year old lop-eared bunny, Stewart, has always loved plush toys. His two current favorites are actually dog toys – the Simply Fido Bunny and the Hagen Dog-it Puppy Luv Elephant. He also loves my Bugs Bunny golf club cover!


With New Year’s resolutions just around the corner, we can all relate to this next segment of toys. Exercise is especially important for caged pets. Placing an exercise wheel inside the cage is an ideal way to ensure your small pet can ‘work out’ anytime. Exercise balls provide a great out-of-cage experience and kids love to follow their pets as they roll around the house. Watch out for the stairs! Multi-level habitats for larger pets such as ferrets and chinchillas or ladders for birds provide great exercise opportunities.

26 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

• Jungle Talk 71832- $9.99

Toys are essential for birds, especially the species generally regarded as having significant intelligence. These birds require intellectual stimulation as well as an outlet for excess energy and aggression. Providing the right mix of toys to your parrot plays a part in preventing negative behaviors such as screeching, feather plucking and biting. Preening toys provide small, medium and large birds with a way to replicate the calming and instinctual behavior of preening or smoothing fellow birds’ feathers in the wild. Rope toys, such as the Jungle Talk Cotton Candy toy are excellent choices to promote preening. Medium and large birds (from Conures and Quakers to Cockatoos and Macaws) love to rip and chew cardboard, wood, leather, rope, books – well, you get the idea – just about anything will do. It’s important to provide safe, ‘approved’ toys for them to destroy because it’s a natural, healthy behavior. Birds are intellectual creatures. Along with chewing, they need toys that stimulate their brains and provide a challenge. The challenge can be as simple as untying rope or leather knots or toys which will require the bird to figure out how to get food or treats out of compartments (foraging toys). And, sometimes toys are just about having fun and it’s as simple as mirrors and bells! Our Pet Expert’s Picks: Zoomax toys for larger birds; small birds love the JW Activitoys for mirrors, bells and other stimulation. Whether your small animal or bird has been naughty or nice this year, visit the Pet Experts at your local Pet Valu store to find the perfect toy for your small pet!



Tips & tricks for taking great holiday pet photos by leah piltz


t’s the holiday season again, and however your family celebrates, there’s one thing in common: lots of digital cameras capturing your family’s special moments! As we pet lovers know, a good portion of pictures will include our pets – after all, they are some of the cutest members of our family. Pets have the natural good looks and charm that the camera loves, making them the ideal subjects for any picture. While every picture of your pet is adorable (of course!), how do you get that really great shot? You know, the one that you’ll be posting as your Facebook profile picture or sending out with your Christmas cards next year. Try some of these tricks and tips to get the very best photos of your pet:

Camera ready The first tip is implemented before the photography even begins! For the best pictures of your pet, make sure they start out looking their greatest. Winter is a time when your pet’s fur coat is full and thick, which can lead to a scraggly appearance. Brush them to restore a store look. Regular brushing will also promote

shine, giving your pet a healthy glow. For white dogs, use a tearstain remover and shampoo with a whitening formula to improve color. You can also have your pet groomed professionally for a more polished look.

Get on your pet’s level Pictures are all about perspective, and what better perspective than a pet’s-eye-view. Getting down to your pet’s level will let you get a good head-on shot, instead of having a view of your pet’s back or the top of their head. It will also help reduce the likelihood of unwanted feet in the picture.

Minimize the use of the flash There are two reasons to minimize the use of the flash when taking photos of your pets. The first reason is that pets will not understand what’s happening. They see the bright flash of light and can get confused, run away, or in the most extreme cases, even bite. If your pet is calm with the use of the flash, there is still another unwanted effect: red/glowing eyes! Pets’ eyes are especially prone to this, and it can easily take away from an otherwise great picture. To minimize the use of the flash, make sure the area where you are photographing your pet is well-lit, or try using some of the low-light settings on your camera.

Leah Piltz takes such good photos of her rabbits that Mad Cow is featured on the packaging for Health Diet Rabbit Food!

Treat your pet The promise of a treat is an excellent motivator to get your wiggly pet to sit still for a photograph. It also provides a reward for a job well done. The thing to remember when using treats for photography is to keep note of what your pet’s eyes are focused on. If you want them to be looking at the camera, hold the treat in the area directly above or below the camera. If you want them to be looking up, hold the treat above their head.

Use props to set the scene Is your pet black, brown, white, or a combination of these? Are your walls, couches, floors, or backyard these same colors? Animals’ coats are well designed for camouflage, yet camouflage is the last thing you want in your pictures! To make your pet stand out, use brightly colored fabrics and blankets to brighten up the shot. Make sure that the objects in the background do not blend with your pet’s natural coloring. If you are going for a festive holiday picture, you could even add a festive holiday outfit, holiday toys, or a Santa hat to set the scene.

Be patient! It can take several shots to get the picture you’re looking for. The good thing about digital photography is that you don’t have to take the time and expense of getting your photos developed to see if you have a good picture. If your pet is posing for a picture, keep clicking that camera! You never know which shot is going to be the one.

share your photos When you get that great picture, share it with other pet-loving folks by posting it on our Pet Valu Facebook page at petvalu

• Oster Bristle Brush 63126 from $17.99

• Perfect Coat White Pearl Shampoo 44011 - $9.99

• Nutri-Vet Tear Stain Removal Pads 43643 - $8.99

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 27

Su doku Pet

1. Here’s an easy one


4 1


2. This one’s a little harder

1 4

1 2 28 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010

4 1

2 3

4 3

6 2 3 4

3. If that was too easy, try Pet Sudoku with numbers 1 through 6

find the answers at

Sudoku is a fun logi c puzz le. Use the num bers already in the boxes to figu re out the rest. Each row across, column down and box must contain the num bers 1, 2, 3 and 4, with no doubles.


5 6





fety Hazards Sa s a m st ri h C n o p to brush-u Match the sentences drink. micals that pets should not ber band,

3. Either your cat or dog could cho

ke on

4. If your pet loves to chew cords,

6. Candles are pretty at Christma

s. For safety,

5. To help avoid injury from broken


A. fertilizer or other che

n counter unattended. leave it sitting on your kitche ’t Don . key tur s ma ist Chr r B. the bones of you reach of pets. breakable ornaments out of p kee and ll wa a to e tre r C. secure you g intestinal injuries. D. it could be swallowed, causin s tree lights. cords, including the Christma all er cov or e hid ely saf E. dles unattended. pets. Never leave burning can r you of ch rea of out p h-u F. place them hig sick. G. chocolate, as it can make him


7. Water in your tree stand could



Do you know a dog by one of these ‘most popular’ names? The top names for boys are: Max - Buddy Jake - Bailey The top names for girls are: Molly - Bella Lucy - Maggie

Strange Cat Behavimoorerenstertaining 6f; 7a

2. Cats love tinsel, but like a rub

al any

Answers: 1g; 2d; 3b; 4e; 5c;

1. Be careful your dog doesn’t ste

Here are a few book page cat stories from our Face ower A Nice, WarmwhSo h the bath enjoys a shower! He sits in How about a cat named Joe water nice er right on him. He likes the and you have to run the show and warm, but not ver y hard! Kelly H.

A Good Chasewh! o likes to chase her very long tail.

There’s a cat named Monkey me that tting so caught up in her ga ge d, un aro d an d un aro es She go MEOW! n tail – and give out a good sometimes she’ll bite her ow Lesley W.

Hide & Seek

drawers, a talent for opening dresser s ha t tha t ca a s ha r de rea One drawer to close! climbing in, and getting the Chelsea H.

Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 29

s to r i e s!




A look at the lighter side of celebrating the holidays with pets! by libbi hood

OMG! that shiny round thingy is so mine!

30 Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010


hristmas is a time of year like no other, and that’s true for your pets, too. They may not be rushing around shopping or going to parties, but they have plenty of good times and stressors at Christmas, just like us. For example, Christmas is a great time for festive outfits. Some dogs love to dress up in a Santa suit and parade around for guests. Or just lay by the fireplace, panting like…well, a dog… due to the plush outfit, full fur coat and roaring heat source. Good times. Cats are altogether less likely to enjoy dressing up! Do you make your cat wear a red and green jingle collar even though he clearly loathes it? Does he spend every second trying to scrape or pry it off with paws, table legs and pine boughs? That is Christmas-stress, feline style.

How does your cat feel about your Christmas tree? Does she move under ‘her tree’ the second it arrives in the house and refuse to be budged from the spot until it’s dragged away on January 2nd? Even a mountain of gifts won’t stop a feline fan of the tree from slithering under the triangle of pine heaven, curling up beside or around or over some delicately wrapped gift (inevitably breakable) and sleeping the day away. What about your dog and your tree? Trees fulfill a very specific need for most dogs… one that is not desirable in your living room! Has your pup ever thanked you for the indoor tree by lifting his leg??? Of course, the only gifts not under the tree the week before Christmas are the ones for the pets. Hasn’t everyone bought a lovely little gift for their cat or dog from a deliciously animal-scented world (like your Pet Valu store) and then forgotten to immediately and properly HIDE it? Or secure it might be a more accurate depiction. A timer-activated, 2-inch thick, reinforced wall safe might be a viable option! Because as soon as the Pet Valu bag comes into the house, the cat or dog is ON IT. Or, if they’re a stealthy and cunning animal, they ignore it, pretending not to even notice, until you forget and drop it on the bed with the rest of your holiday shopping. And when you’re not looking… utter, messy destruction of the liver treats or bag of catnip will occur. And it happens right on your bed. Drool and partially eaten bits (some food, some not even edible) will litter the bed and floor. Oh. GREAT. And decorations! Some pets are FREAKED OUT by the tree itself, along with the singing Santa ornament, the bells on the closet door, the lighted miniature village, and all-the-people-that-just-keep-knocking! Carolers. Uncle Mike! The paper boy hoping for a Christmas tip! School friends home from college! Your neighbor with homemade shortbread! They just keep coming! AWWWWWWWWWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! BARK! BARK! BARK! pant. pant. pant. Whine. BARK! AAAWWWWWWWWWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Crash! Yup, that was at least half the ornaments off the Christmas tree, hitting the ground when your cat attempted to use the tree to pry off the red and green jingle collar. Doesn’t seem like such a cute idea now, does it? At least you remembered to anchor the tree to the wall so it won’t fall on Grandma. Didn’t you?


SAVIngS % Save 15 off a Super-Value American Kennel Club Dog Bed. High-quality bed compares to those priced at $40 or more! Amazing Everyday Low Price $19.99

➜ $16.99 with coupon

While supplies last. Coupon must be presented at time of purchase. Valid at any Pet Valu location, January 3-9, 2011

Save % 15

off your purchase of any 1 Dog or Cat Toy*

* Excludes treats, food, litter & cat trees. Not to be combined with other Pet Valu offers. Coupon must be presented at time of purchase.

Valid at any pet valu location January 10-16, 2011

Save % 15

off your purchase of any Dog or Cat Treat*

* One bag, box or individually wrapped edible treat excluding food. Not to be combined with other Pet Valu offers. Coupon must be presented at time of purchase.

Valid at any pet valu location January 17-23, 2011

Save 15


off your purchase of 5 or more cans* of Performatrin or Performatrin Ultra Dog or Cat food * Cans must be the same manufacturer, brand and size. Dog and cat food cannot be combined for offer. Not to be combined with other Pet Valu offers. Coupon must be presented at time of purchase.

Valid at any pet valu location January 24-30, 2011 Winter 2010 - Pet Valu Companion 31

Complete and balanced pet food

made with only fresh, hormone free, deboned meats, and farm fresh fruits and vegetables. (With absolutely no rendered meats or oils)

dog & cat food

T hey’re ma de Canada an in 100% g rain d free!

Pet Valu Companion - Winter 2010