Archives for December 2014

New Year’s Resolutions from the Coddle Creek Dogs

All lined up, pretty as a picture: Luke, Daisy Mae and Trooper

All lined up, pretty as a picture: Luke, Daisy Mae and Trooper

New Year’s Resolutions

The Coddle Creek Dogs read my recent post about New Year’s resolutions and have a few New Year’s Resolutions of their own.

Luke, “I hereby resolve to…….

  • sleep on both new doggie couches and get them shaped ‘just so’ to all my curves
  • show Trooper and Daisy Mae how the game of fetch is played
  • eat more bacon, cottage cheese and Greek yogurt
  • cuddle with my humans every day
  • learn to like bananas
  • eat more peanut butter

Trooper, “I hereby resolve to…..

  • be the first one out the door every morning
  • claim my crate before Luke or Daisy Mae have a chance to sleep in it
  • eat the entire spoonful of Greek Yogurt and cottage cheese in one helping
  • learn how to dislike at least one food
  • learn how to give up the ball when Daddy plays fetch with me
  • eat more peanut butter

Daisy Mae, “I hereby resolve to…..

  • quit going in Trooper’s crate or climbing on top of it
  • learn to like dried sweet potato chips
  • claim the new doggie couches before Luke and Trooper get to them
  • be the prettiest girl in our household
  • eat more bananas
  • eat more peanut butter

Predictions About Their New Year’s Resolutions

  • Trooper and Daisy Mae are incapable about learning the rules of fetch, so give it up Luke
  • If Luke ever eats bananas we will know he is sick, so this one better not come true
  • Trooper never seems to get the timing right to claim his own crate so he will be sleeping on the Kuranda bed because he sure won’t go in Luke and Daisy Mae’s crates
  • If ever Trooper does not want to eat whatever is put in front of him, we will know he is sick, so this one better not come true
  • Nothing can convince Daisy Mae that sweet potato chips are good……..bananas are another thing
  • Daisy Mae loves all crates and beds and couches, so give it up everybody
  • Daisy Mae will always be the prettiest girl in our household
Did somebody say peanut butter?!?

Did somebody say peanut butter?!?

New Year’s Resolutions for Pet Parents

Those Pesky New Year’s Resolutions

Yes, you know what we’re talking about.  The resolve to lose weight, get more organized, exercise more, get on a regular sleep schedule and so on. All those self improvement resolutions.  How’s that been working out for you?  Not so well you say.  Maybe it’s time to incorporate your pets’ needs into your New Year’s resolutions for a new twist. Here are our top 10 New Year’s resolutions for pet parents.

Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions for Pet Parents

  1. Walk with your dog every day. Play games with your cat.
  2. Brush your teeth twice a day…..and brush Fido and Fluffy’s’s teeth once a day.
  3. Measure your food…..and measure your pets’ portions too.
  4. Play with your dog and cat every day.
  5. Go to bed at a similar time every night and get up at a similar time every morning.  Your dog will happily serve as your lights out monitor every night and alarm clock every morning.
  6. Keep Spot’s brain active with training a few minutes every day. Keep your own brain active by learning how to positively train your cat and dog.
  7. Practice relaxation habits while brushing your pets’ coats every day.
  8. Disengage from electronics for at least one hour every evening.  That’s a great time to walk with your dog, train your cat or brush their coat or teeth.
  9. A place for everything and everything in its place.  That applies to your “stuff” as well as your pets’ blankets, toys, food bowls and beds. Heck, maybe you can train your dog to put his toys in the toy basket every evening.
  10. Laugh every day at the antics of your pets.

 How These New Year’s Resolutions for Pet Parents Benefit You and Your Pets

If you follow New Year’s resolutions for pet parents,  you and your pets will be more relaxed, healthier and happier.  Exercise benefits all species. Walking your dog (or cat too) provides benefits for physical and mental health, reduces negative behavior and helps with sleep. ( There is nothing better for bonding with your dog than a daily walk.  You will both release endorphins, get your blood flowing, increase strength, burn calories and enhance your brain power. ( )

Our general health overall health is affected by our dental health. ( ).  Just as we need to brush our teeth regularly, out pets need good dental care too. (

It does take practice and patience to introduce teeth brushing, but you will be rewarded with a healthier pet.  Never use human toothpaste, instead purchase toothpaste made for cats and dogs. There are substances in human toothpaste that are harmful to pets if swallowed and our pets don’t know to spit out the toothpaste.



When introducing teeth brushing to your pet, start slow.  Put some pet toothpaste on your finger and allow your pet to lick it off.  The next day put some pet toothpaste on a piece of gauze or pet toothbrush and allow your pet to lick the toothpaste.  Continue with this until your pet appears eager to get a taste of toothpaste.  Then you can introduce placing the toothbrush with toothpaste on the outside of your pet’s teeth. Be sure to go at a pace that is comfortable for your pet.

The best exercise is to use our fingers to push back from the table. That’s far easier if we measure our portions and stick to a nutritionally appropriate and balanced diet. The same thing applies to our pets.  It’s up to us to prevent or treat pet obesity because our pets can’t make these decisions on their own. (

In our connected, go go go world, relaxation and appreciation of nature become even more important.  Take that break from the television, computer or smart phone and truly engage with your dog or cat.  Taking a walk, brushing your pet, playing an active game of fetch or engaging your cat in mind games indoors will rejuvenate all of you. This is an ideal time to incorporate a few minutes of training into your daily routine with your pets. Just be sure to make it fun and positive.  We especially like clickers for the training activities. (

Be sure to laugh every day.  We never tire of watching Luke, Daisy Mae and Trooper’s antics.  We are especially blessed to be able to take care of lots of pets in our pet sitting business and have lots of opportunities for laughter in our daily work.

Luke is obsessed with tennis balls

Luke is obsessed with tennis balls

Jade loves her walks

Jade loves her walks


Presents 4 Pets 2014 Was a Huge Success!!

Presents 4 Pets 2014 Results

Wowee!! Yippee Skippy! Presents 4 Pets 2014 has been a huge success thanks to you the members of our LKN community.

Items such as toys, treats, blankets, towels, rugs, pet beds, leashes, collars, harnesses, crates, kitty litter, pet shampoo and pet food were collected. We will be making deliveries to the beneficiaries in the next few days:

The goal for the community collection was a minimum of 300 items. Over 470 items were collected with an approximate value of $1270 during the Presents 4 Pets 2014 campaign!!

We extend our heartfelt appreciation to all those who donated to this worthy cause and helped to make the “Presents 4 Pets” campaign a success.
We are 
especially grateful to the businesses that sponsored donation boxes in Davidson, Cornelius and Mooresville:

The Veterinary Hospital of Davidson was a donation site for Presents 4 Pets 2014

The Veterinary Hospital of Davidson was a donation site for Presents 4 Pets 2014


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Many thanks to the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS) for providing the guidance for this project.

NAPPS is the only national nonprofit trade association dedicated to serving the needs of professional pet sitters. The Association aims to help the pet owning public, those interested in pet sitting, and professionals engaged in the in-home pet care industry by fulfilling its vision statement, serving as “the most respected authority in professional pet sitting.” It does so by providing the tools and support to foster the success of its members. NAPPS recently launched a membership designed with the pet parent in mind—the NAPPS Pet Parent Membership is the ultimate resource for pet lovers; offering guides, education opportunities, networking and exclusive discounts and deals to help pet parents care for their animal companions.

To find a pet sitter in your area, check out NAPPS’ nationwide “Pet Sitter Locator” at For more information on NAPPS, please follow @TheNAPPS on Twitter or join us on Facebook at

Doggie Doggie, Are You OK?

Pet Saver, Pet First Aid and CPR

Over a year ago Billy took the Red Cross Dog & Cat First Aid course because we value the safety of your pets as well as the safety of our own pets. In October of this year we attended the Petsitting-ology conference in Las Vegas.  While there we both had the opportunity to take the Pet Saver, Pet First Aid and CPR classes offered by by Pet Tech, Inc.  The Pet Safety Guy himself, Thom Somes taught much of our eight hour course.     1022141115

As professional pet sitters it is important to us to not only provide proper care for our own three dogs but also to provide proper care for your cats and dogs and keep them safe while in our care.  Pet Tech’s Pet Saver Program includes 6 components:  Caring for your Pet, Pet First Aid and CPR, Snout-to-Tail Assessment, Poisonous Items, Essentials and Dental Care.

We learned the importance of doing a Snout-to-Tail assessment of your pet at least weekly.  You too can do this valuable assessment by downloading the Pet Tech Pet Saver app on your smart phone.  Just go to the Play Store on your Android phone or the App Store on your iphone and type in “pet saver.” The Pet Tech Pet Saver app has a small fee but is worth its’ weight in gold.  You can record the results of your pet’s weekly snout-to-tail assessment for starters but the app is loaded with other useful wellness and injury information.  We encourage you to go download that app right now!

We wish we had known about this several years ago before our beloved Beau became ill with lymphoma.  Had we been assessing his basic health indicators on a weekly basis we are confident the changes would have led us to seek medical attention sooner.  He could have had palliative care to resolve his discomfort and to keep him with us longer.  Now  we feel armed with information and that is a great feeling.

While in the class we had an opportunity to practice restraining and muzzling, CPR,  rescue breathing, and first aid bleeding protocols.  Despite the “excitement” of these hands on skills we know that fortunately we will use the wellness information on a daily basis and through prevention plan to avoid the need for urgent care.

In January Billy will take the 3 day training course to become an instructor in the Pet Tech Pet Saver, Pet First Aid and CPR program. We are excited to be able to offer this valuable resource to our community in the near future. Stay tuned for details regarding when he will teach the first series of classes here in Coddle Creek!!


How to Turn Your Outdoors Cat into an Indoors Cat

Bringing Your Outdoors Cat Indoors

The weather is getting cold again and that got us thinking about the plight of outdoor cats. Despite what many people think, cats really don’t fare well outside.  If you are cold, so are they. Maybe you have been contemplating bringing your outdoors cat indoors or restricting access to the outdoors for your indoor/outdoor cat.  If so, good for you!!

Hazards for Outdoors Cats

Want to know some of the problems of letting cats roam around outside? They are exposed to many illnesses including feline leukemia, feline AIDS and upper respiratory infections. Cats can pick up parasites including fleas, ticks and worms. They can be hit by cars, killed by other animals or tortured by cruel individuals. and they really can get stuck in a tall tree. The weather is getting cold again and that got us thinking about the plight of outdoor cats. Despite what many people think, cats really don’t fare well outside.

If you are cold, so are they. Maybe you have been contemplating bringing your outdoor cat in or restricting access to the outdoors for your indoor/outdoor cat.  If so, good for you!!

If you are now inclined to consider bringing your outdoors cat indoors you are probably concerned that your cat will destroy your furniture.  Not to worry, you do not have to declaw your cat. In fact we recommend against declawing your cat but that is a topic for another day. It is fairly simple to make your cat’s environment a happy one for her. Provide vertical and horizontal scratching posts, various heights of cat towers, and comfy cat perches to extend the width of the window sills in front of sunny windows. Rotate her toys just as you would a child’s toys. And be sure to interact with your cat in play on a regular basis. Worried about cost?  Many cat friendly items can be made from things you have around home. Be sure to put out cardboard boxes and paper bags because they love those.     CatInBox_250x300

Cat Scratching Post

Cat Scratching Post












Bringing your outdoors cat indoors can more easily be accomplished by utilizing the ultimate in the best of two worlds:  construct a catio.  It does not have to be expensive or elaborate. If you have an existing cat door check to see if you could construct one where the cat gains access to the house.  Take a stroll on Pinterest to find great ideas. You can get a lot of ideas by visiting Jackson Galaxy’s web page too. We hope this gives you a good starting place for your first catio.

Catio1 Cat terrace









We wish you the best with bringing your outdoors cat indoors!