Dec 6 2016

Frosty Paws – Keep Your Pet Safe This Winter

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Winter is definitely upon us! Not only is it time for humans to dig out their cold weather clothes, it’s also time to think about keeping our pets safe during these arctic cold days. Here are some tips to keeping your pets safe.

1. Keep your pets inside. Limit your pets outside time for bathroom breaks when temperatures start to tumble. If it’s too cold for you, it’s defintely too cold for your pet. If your pet is normally outside, move them to a sheltered garage or heated dog house, away from the wind.

2. Outdoor cats have been known to find refuge underneath the hoods of cars. When the car is started, the cat could become injured or even killed by moving parts of the engine. If you have an outdoor cat, honk the horn before starting the car to give the cat a chance to escape.

3. Keep your dog on a leash in the winter weather. Pets can lose their scent in the snow and ice and find refuge in unfamiliar places. This is also a good opportunity to check your dog or cats id tag to make sure they have the most current contact information in case your pet becomes lost or stolen. We also recommend mircrochipping your pet. More dogs are lost during the winter than any other time of the year.

4. When getting your pet groomed, don’t have them shaved down to the skin. A longer coat provides more warmth. Bathing your dog? Be sure to completely dry them before taking them out for a walk. For short-haired breeds, put them in a warm sweater with a high collar that gives the pet coverage from the base of their tail to the belly. My toy poodle Lucy loves to wear her jacket and waits for me to put it on her before going outside.

5. Make sure to keep a dry towel near the door when you bring in your dogs from being outside. Thoroughly dry their paws, legs and belly. They can pick up bits of salt, antifreeze and other lethal chemicals from being outside. It can also be painful for the animal to have shards of ice in their fur. A dogs paws can actually bleed from encrusted ice. This is also a good opportunity to give them some extra love and praise them for good outdoor behavior.

6. Never leave your pet alone in a vehicle. The vehicle can act as a refrigerator, keeping the cold inside and causing your pet to freeze to death.

7. If your pet spends a lot of time playing outside, increase his food supply. Make sure to include extra protein to help keep his fur in great shape.

8. Coolant and antifreeze are lethal for cats and dogs. If you have any spills in your garage or driveway make sure to clean them thoroughly. Stay away from product s that use ethylene glycol. If your pet should ingest any of these products, call your veterinarian immediately.

9. Rock salt is also dangerous for pets. “Safe Paw” is pet safe ice melt is available for sale at Wayside Waifs and is safe for pets.

10. Give your pet a warm place to sleep. Make sure beds are located away from doors and drafts. Warm blankets or a large pillow is great.

 

Written by: Trish Stinger, Digital Marketing/Brand Manager
Wayside Waifs


Sep 26 2016

Meet Memphis!

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Meet Memphis! This sweet, goofy guy is a 75-pound Mastiff mix who’s looking for a home. He was transferred to Wayside Waifs when his last shelter ran out of space for him. Now that he’s settled in, he’s more than ready to find his peeps and get to his new fur-ever home!

Are you looking for a laid-back companion who will enjoy relaxing around the house with you? Memphis is your guy! He would be a great friend to children and other canine companions, too. Memphis is super smart and eager to learn all the exciting things you have to teach him. With some positive encouragement and some extra treats for motivation, he’ll be able to learn the ropes in no time.

He loves to stay active by taking long walks. He’s an explorer who enjoys the exciting sights and smells that the great outdoors has to offer. He has great leash manners, too so staying healthy will be something fun you can enjoy together!

Memphis is an independent guy who won’t ask for much. He’ll let you know how much he loves you by curling up by your side to enjoy some belly rubs. As you can see in his picture, he also likes to stick out his tongue for fun! If you’re looking for a silly, fun, loving companion, come by Wayside Waifs soon to see Memphis! Tail wags!


Sep 12 2016

Meet Waif of the Week, Ayla!

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Meet Ayla! Ayla is proud to be one of this week’s Waifs of the Week and is hoping this will be her time to get noticed by her new peeps! Ayla first came to Wayside Waifs when her old shelter ran out of space for her. She was then adopted, but brought back when her owners were worried about her health. When she arrived back at Wayside, we did everything we could to make sure Ayla was in amazing health and feeling more than ready to find her fur-ever home! She’s back and better than ever, waiting for the best family to go home with.

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Ayla is an adorable, Hound/American Blue Heeler who is 1 year and 8 months old. Like most young dogs, she’s energetic and loves to play! She did great with the 6-year-old she used to live with, so if you have little ones at home she’ll make a great companion. She loves to go on walks and does grr-eat when she uses her easy walk harness. Getting active can be a fun and enjoyable experience for both of you! Ayla could also try daycare or dog parks.

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Ayla is a very smart pup. She already know the commands sit, down, and stay and she’s the type of dog who’s always eager to learn. With some basic obedience training she’ll be able to add even more to that list. She’s extra motivated to learn when you give her yummy treats or fun toys to play with!

 

If you’re looking for a companion who is sweet, smart, and beautiful, Ayla is your girl. With those big brown eyes, you’re sure to fall in love at first sight! Ayla would love to meet you so stop by Wayside Waifs soon!

 

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Jun 16 2015

Beat the heat! Keep your pet cool this summer.

Spending summer days with your furry friend can be a lot of fun but the weather conditions aren’t always suitable for your pet. The rising temperatures and extreme humidity that the summer brings can be fatal for your animal if you aren’t aware of the dangers they can bring. On a really hot day your pet probably prefers a cool, air conditioned environment, but if you take on the outdoors with them there are a few things to remember.

Keeping your pet hydrated is crucial. Make sure you provide fresh, clean water that your pet can access at any time.  Also, if you’re unable to keep them indoors make sure that they have a shaded area they can go to when they need to get out of the sun.  If they are outdoors in the sun for too long, your pet can become overheated.  If you are transporting them in a vehicle be sure to never leave them in the car while it’s parked. A parked car can quickly become way too hot for your pet, whether the windows are down or not. Leaving an animal unattended in a parked vehicle can be fatal for your pet so make sure you are able to keep them with you when you’ve reached your destination or just leave them at home so they can stay cool.

Another way to keep your pet cool is to trim their fur. If you have a breed that grows long hair, it can be beneficial to get their hair trimmed short in the summer time. This can keep them much cooler on hot, summer days. It also helps to brush your animal’s fur more often than usual.

Be sure to pay attention to the heat of the asphalt. If it is a hot day, chances are the concrete and asphalt have reached temperatures that can potentially burn your pet’s paws.  Don’t let your pet stand or walk where the ground might be too hot for their paws.

Taking your pet swimming is a great idea for the both of you to cool off.  If you decide to let your pet splash around in a pool, lake, or other body of water do not leave them unsupervised! Not all dogs are natural swimmers and may need help. Don’t just assume that they will be able to swim and take care of themselves while in the water.

It is important to know the symptoms of overheating so that you can know when there is a problem and when you need to take action. Some symptoms of overheating are excessive panting or difficulty breathing, an increased heart rate, excessive drooling, or mild weakness. When body temperatures get too high they can also experience seizures, diarrhea, or vomiting. Pay attention to the weather and be aware of the potential danger that the hot summers can bring. By doing this you can beat the heat and have a fun but safe summer with your furry friend!

 


Oct 24 2014

Halloween Pet Safety

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Halloween is just around the corner, which means it is time to talk pet safety. Whether you and your fur babies are gearing up for a full fledged trick-or-treat session in the neighborhood or you are spending the night inside, passing out candy, you need to take some precautions. In our first Halloween blog, we’ll discuss safety measures you need to make as you prepare for trick-or-treaters at home.

Important Safety Tips: Halloween Edition

1. Decorations – For many, Halloween is the unofficial start of the holiday season. This means that for the months ahead, there will be lots of decorations in and around the house. The key? Just make sure you keep you furry friend’s safety in mind as you string lights, carve pumpkins, and display baskets of maze. The main thing you will want to consider is making sure your dog or cat cannot chew on any exposed wires, pumpkins, or other potentially harmful decorations.

2. Candy – It wouldn’t be Halloween season without a big bowl of candy by the front door. And while it may sound redundant, dogs and “people food” don’t go well together. More specifically, chocolate. While dogs’ sensitivity to this delicious treat varies, its best to err on the side of caution. Skip the indigestion or visits to the pet emergency room altogether, and put the candy bowl out of their reach.

3. Safe Zone – Whether you have an outdoor pet or just like let them out occasionally, take extra caution on the night of and those leading up to Halloween. Everything from the increase in foot traffic to cruel Halloween pranks could give your pooch a scare. And let’s face it, scares are for people – not dogs!

Although it is smart to take extra safety measures as we approach Halloween, that does not mean your pet can’t get into the spirit of things. IN our next blog, you will find tips about how your pet can safely participate in upcoming Halloween events!

Thinking about adding a furry friend to your family.

If you are looking for a pooch that can accompany you through the upcoming holiday season, and for many to come, be sure to visit Wayside Waifs. You can also “meet” our Waifs on our website.


Aug 8 2014

Canine Atopy

Canine AtopyEveryone has a concept of what allergies are in people, but while pets can suffer from allergies too they look and are usually managed quite differently.  An allergy is an abnormal immune response the body has to something that is harmless. The immune system basically overreacts and mistakenly perceives this harmless thing as being a threat to the body.  Animals can have allergic reactions to vaccinations, bee stings, a particular food, or things in the environment. In the context of this article we are going to just address environmental allergies in dogs, which the proper term for is canine atopic dermatitis or atopy.  Atopy is a fairly common type of allergic condition that is estimated to affect anywhere from 3-15% of the dog population (MacDonald) and can be very challenging to manage.

Common clinical signs of atopy include rubbing, licking, biting or scratching at their feet, muzzle, ears, armpit and belly areas. The skin in these areas may be red and inflamed and some dogs will also develop secondary skin infections due to all the self trauma they’re causing. Many dogs may also have frequent ear infections or anal gland problems.  Dogs may be itchy year round or seasonally.

As with anything, it’s important to rule out other medical conditions first since there are other causes for itchy skin.  If your vet is starting to think your dog may have an allergic condition, one of the first things he or she will do is make sure your dog doesn’t have external parasites like fleas or skin mites.  Your vet may also do bloodwork to rule out common internal diseases that can cause skin issues.  An additional test may be a diet trial to rule out food allergies. This involves feeding a special prescription diet only for 8-12 weeks and monitoring for improvement of symptoms.  If your dog responds favorably then that may mean he or she has a food allergy instead of environmental allergies.

Through out this entire process your vet may prescribe different medications to help alleviate the symptoms and make your dog more comfortable.  The goal of most treatment plans is to manage the symptoms, rather than treat the allergy, similar to people who take allergy medication when they are especially sneezy or sniffly.  Some types of medication that your vet may prescribe include antihistamines, oral steroids, topical steroids, immunosuppressive drugs, medicated baths or wipes and fatty acid supplements.  If there are any signs of a secondary bacterial or yeast skin infection then antibiotics or antifungals may also be prescribed.  As with any medication there can be side effects so ask your vet what side effects you should be monitoring for and notify them if you see any.

If your dog does not respond to the diet trial and is still miserable despite frequent attempts to manage the symptoms with medications your vet may recommend allergy testing and allergy shots by a veterinary dermatologist. This will help provide answers as to what your dog is allergic to so that specific injections can be given on a schedule to help desensitize your dog’s immune system to allergens.  It can often take a long time for dogs to respond and not all of them do.

Now if that all seems complicated and confusing that’s because it usually is!  Most of these dogs are challenging to diagnose and treat.  And because it can often take a long time (weeks to months) to achieve an acceptable degree of relief from the itchiness and discomfort pet parents can get easily discouraged.

While the most important thing is to develop a good relationship with a vet you trust, YOU as a pet parent will be a key component in helping your dog through this.  If your vet suspects your dog may have atopy here are some helpful things you can do:

1. Keep track of what you’re seeing.  Write it down and bring it to your vet appointments so that you can provide your vet the most accurate information.

2. Pay particular attention to:

  • What signs are you seeing and how severe are they?
  • When are you seeing them? All the time during particular months?
  • How long do they last?
  • Is there any improvement with any type of treatment?
  • At what age was your dog when you started noticing clinical signs?

3. Follow your vet’s treatment directions
There may be a greater number of medications with specific treatment instructions.  Following the treatment plan will not only ensure the best chance for your dog to improve but provide good information to your vet.  If you are unable to follow all of your vet’s directions be honest with them.

4. Discuss the goals of treatment with your vet, and understand that in many cases the treatment plan may be to manage the symptoms, rather than treat the underlying cause.

5. Understand that diagnostics and treatment may be financially more than you might expect. Be honest about what you can do and what you can’t do.

6. Be prepared to be a frequent visitor of your vet’s practice!

7. Be prepared that your vet may recommend your dog see a dermatologist.  They are experts in skin conditions and may be able to better help your dog.

Written by Alison Liu. DVM
Wayside Waifs

 

 

Citations:

MacDonald, John M. Western Veterinary Conference. 2012. Las Vegas, NV. n.p. n.d. Web.


Jun 15 2014

Taking Care of Older Dogs

older-dogsMost dog owners arrive at a point where it is difficult for their dog to do the simplest tasks, like getting up a set of stairs or going for a spin around the block. As a dog owner, this is heartbreaking. The hard fact of life is that, like people, dogs age and require assistance doing otherwise routine things. Although it can be difficult seeing your best friend go through these changes, there are some things you can do to ease the transition.

How You Can Help

By making some simple changes to the way you care for your dog, you can greatly enhance their day-to-day quality of life.

Concentrate on what food you are giving your dog.

There are several considerations that are important to make when it comes to the diet of an older dog. Spending a little more money on the purchase of quality food is important, as it often helps ensure your furry friend is receiving the nutrients he or she needs. Better quality food does not equate to more food. Just like humans, being overweight takes a toll on your dog’s body frame, especially as they age. On the same token, you want to be certain your dog is not underweight, which brings us to our next point.

Maintain Fido’s Dental Health.

Try to brush your dog’s teeth regularly. This will help prevent some diseases and make sure they don’t lose teeth prematurely. Sometimes dental issues keep dogs from eating, causing them to be underweight. If you notice this happening, check their teeth to see if that’s the cause for weight loss.

Schedule regular veterinarian visits

Checkups once a year are fine for most mature dogs; however, it is your responsibility to take your dog to the vet if you notice any unusual or concerning changes. The goal? Prevention, not recovery. Listen to your instincts. If something seems wrong, it probably is.

Keep your dog active and engaged.

Exercise is crucial to the well-being of your aging dog. Just remember, though. Mental health is of equal importance.  Having toys around for your dog to play with will keep them engaged. Car rides and walks offer a great change of scenery, too. And with sensory stimulation playing a key role in your dog’s happiness, it must not be overlooked in everyday interactions.

Treat Your Dog How You Would Want to be Treated.

The simplest way to ensure your aging dog’s happiness? Treat your dog how you would want to be treated in your old age. It’s as simple as that. As man’s best friend, Fido deserves some extra T.L.C.

 

 

 


Apr 24 2014

The Dos & Don’ts of Dog Park Etiquette

dog-parkApril showers bring May flowersand lots of visits to the dog park, of course. As you leash up and head to your favorite dog park, be sure that you have reviewed this list of dog park dos and don’ts. You won’t regret it! By employing some basic precautions, you and Fido will have long days of fun in the sun all spring and summer long.

What to Avoid:

  • Visiting overly crowded dog parks
  • Bringing a young puppy – under 4 months of age – to the dog park
  • Providing treats & toys that could spur jealousy
  • Fraternization amongst unfixed (spade or neutered) dogs

What to Do:

  • Keep your dog’s vaccinations up-to-date – don’t forget flea and tick meds, too!
  • Bring poop bags to prevent spread of disease or any unwanted messes
  • Keep a close watch on Fido. It’s a new place with new dogs, so you will want to monitor for signs of aggression or agitation.
  • Don’t forget a back-up water supply – one for you and another for your pooch! A panting pup needs to stay hydrated, especially when it is warm outside.

Learn More

Wayside Waifs invites you and your four-legged friend to enjoy our Bark Park. Your membership fee earns you full access to our well-lit, fenced-in, off-leash dog park. It gets better! All the fees aid our adoptable pups in need of homes. And if you need some last-minute tick or flea meds, you can make a quick purchase at our Whisker’s & Wags shop, where all purchase proceeds benefit the shelter animals in their journey to find a forever home.

Shelter Hours:

Wednesday-Friday Noon-8pm

Saturday 10am-6pm

Sunday 1pm-6pm


Mar 19 2014

Fido’s Spring Checklist

spring checklist As the grass begins to turn green, snowbells blossom, and the sun sets later in the evening, you and Fido may find yourselves developing a case of spring fever. The good news? With the right precautions taken, you and your pooch will be ready to spring into warmer days with a seamless transition. Employing the tips below is easy, and you’re sure to have some fun along the way.

Spring To-dos:

Up the Exercise

When it’s cold outside, many owners and canine companions get less exercise. Not to worry, though. Although your pooch doesn’t need to get in beach-worthy shape, he or she does need to get conditioned for long days of fun in the sun. The key? Like any exercise regimen, you should ease your way into full-fledged workout mode. In no time walks around the block will turn into 5-mile trail hikes.

Wash The Paws

Beds of green grass are fun for pups to roll around in, but during the spring, be careful of potentially harmful chemicals, such as herbicides, that are used for the removal of  unwanted vegetation.

Flee & Protection

Rolling around in the grass is all good fun until somebody gets a bad case of fleas or ticks. The solution? Monthly flea and tick preventative medication is best practice; however, you’ll also want to give your dog a thorough comb-through if you go for a hike in a heavily wooded area. You can purchase these products at Whiskers & Wags, Wayside’s Boutique. All proceeds from sales in the store benefit the animals at the shelter!

Groom the Coat

Spring is a time for fresh starts, so be sure to send your pet for a day at the groomers, where he or she can get a fresh cut that keeps them cool and comfortable as the weather gets warmer outside. It also helps to get in the routine of brushing them at night.  This can not only help them relax but it keeps the tangles and dander to a minimum.  And, hey, it’s great quality time together. Need some more convincing? Think how cute your pooch will look with their new hairdo!

Learn More

Looking for a furry friend to take long strolls with on breezy spring evenings? Wayside Waifs of Kansas City is home to a number of adoptable dogs and cats that are looking for their forever home, so be sure to stop by the shelter today.

Shelter Hours:

Wednesday-Friday Noon-8pm

Saturday 10am-6pm

Sunday 1pm-6pm


Mar 6 2014

How to Transition Your Dog’s Food

dog foodUnlike their human counterparts, dogs do not need to eat a rainbow (yes, keep those skittles to yourself on family movie night). Although eating food with a balanced spectrum of nutrients is important, owners should aim to consistently provide a healthy meal for their canine companions. However, as dogs mature or develop food allergies or sensitivities, you may come to a point when you need to switch dog food. Don’t panic; follow these simple steps to avoid post-breakfast or dinnertime discomfort.

Know Your Addition

In just five days, you can seamlessly transition your dog’s food. It’s simple: All you have to do is know some basic calculations for you and Fido to be on your way to a healthy new start. Begin by adding 20% of the new food in with 80% of the old. From here, you will up the new food in 20% increments each day, while simultaneously lowering the old mix by 20%. Easy, right?

See the chart below for details.

  • Day 1 – 80% Original food + 20% New
  • Day 2 – 60% Original food + 40% New
  • Day 3 – 40% Original food + 60% New
  • Day 4 – 20% Original food + 80% New
  • Day 5 – 100% New

While these proportions help most dogs make an easy transition to their new food, it is not a foolproof plan. Because of this, there are some telltale signs of irritation you’ll want to watch for throughout this process.

Red Flags:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

*If your dog is exhibiting any of these signs, stop administering new food and visit a veterinarian as soon as possible.

When it comes time to change your dog’s food, be sure to employ the following steps. And remember, there is no universal solution for all dogs. As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to observe your dog for any unusual diet-related behavior as you make this transition.

Adopt Today

If you are looking to adopt a dog you can call your own, Wayside Waifs of Kansas City has a number of animals in need of permanent, loving homes.

 Adoption Hours:

Wednesday-Friday Noon-8pm

Saturday 10am-6pm

Sunday 1pm-6pm

 

Proudly serving the Greater Kansas City community. 


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