We offer NO rawhides at Wholesome Pet Essentials! We do offer a safe alternative chew of baked pork skin. Should you be concerned about the safety of baked pork skin? For those looking for a simple answer….THEY ARE SAFE! They are digested. There are no chemicals used in the processing of baked pork skin like that which are used to process rawhide. For those interested in some data please keep reading this from the University of Illinois study:
Chews are an important part of the pet product industry, with many having potential to decrease plaque or calculus formation. However, their digestion characteristics and gut transit time are virtually unknown. Two experiments were conducted to determine in vitro DM digestibility of expanded pork skin chews and rawhide chews, and apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD), gastrointestinal transit time, and blood metabolite measurements in healthy adult dogs fed a weight-control commercial diet and expanded pork skin chews. In Exp.1, an in vitro method that simulated gastric and small intestinal digestion was used to determine DM digestibility of expanded pork skin chews and rawhide chews. In Exp. 2, after a 22-d baseline phase, 10 purposebred, intact female dogs (5 to 5.5 yr of age; 18.9 to 23.1 kg BW) were fed the diet plus an expanded pork skin chew (~45 g) each day for 22 d. In vitro gastric digestibility of expanded pork skin chews increased with time, with chews being 54.7%, 58.6%, 76.4%, and 86.4% digestible after 6, 12, 18, and 24 h of gastric digestion, respectively. By contrast, gastric digestibility of rawhide chews was 7.6% at 6 h, slowly increased over time, and reached a maximum of 41.6% at 18 h. In vitro gastric plus small intestinal digestibility results indicated near complete digestibility of expanded pork skin chews at all times, whereas rawhide chews were 50 to 85% digestible. In vivo ATTD of DM, OM, and N were greater (P < 0.05) when dogs were fed expanded pork skin chews along with the basal diet, compared with the basal diet alone. However, chew intake did not change transit time measured with a wireless motility device. By contrast, motility index and contraction pattern of the colon were altered (P < 0.05) during chew feeding relative to control. Blood urea N concentrations were greater (P < 0.05) in dogs fed expanded pork skin chews, compared with baseline; this was not surprising, given the increased N intake and absorption from the chews. Intake of expanded pork skin chews resulted in reduced blood cholesterol concentrations (P < 0.05) and tended to decrease blood triglyceride concentrations (P < 0.10). Expanded pork skin had a greater DM digestibility than rawhide chews. In addition, expanded pork skin decreased blood cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations, which may justify further research in this area.
A friendly reminder of things your pet needs to survive comfortably in upcoming winter weather!
15 Ways to Protect Your Dog in Winter
1. Let’s talk temperature!
Some dog breeds are blessed with thick fur that keeps them warm naturally, even in very cold temperatures, but dogs with thin coats may need to wear a sweater or coat when out for winter walks. A good coat should reach from the neck to the base of the tail and also protect the belly. But remember that coats will not prevent frostbite on the ears, feet or tail … so even with a cozy coat, don’t keep your short haired dog out too long in freezing temperatures.
2. Go outside when the sun shines
If your dog feels the cold, try to walk him in the late morning or early afternoon hours when temperatures are a little warmer, and avoid early morning or late evening walks. Spend time playing outdoors while it’s sunny; sunshine brings the added benefit of providing both you and your pet with vitamin D. Play fetch with toys, not sticks, which can cause choking and other injuries. So, if your dog likes to chew and chase, pack a Frisbee, ball or other safe toy and play together in the sun.
3. Indoor pets are happiest
Our family pets need to be indoors with us. The happiest dogs are taken out frequently for walks and exercise but live inside the rest of the time. Don’t leave pets outdoors alone when the temperature drops. A good rule of thumb is to go out with them and when you’re ready to come in, they probably will be too.
4. Cozy bedding
In addition to limiting your dog’s time outdoors on cold days, don’t let your pooch sleep on a cold floor in winter. Choosing the right bedding is vital to ensure your dog stays warm. Warm blankets can create a snug environment; raised beds can keep your dog off cold tiles or concrete, and heated pet beds can help keep the stiffness out of aging joints. Place your dog’s bed in a warm spot away from drafts, cold tile or uncarpeted floors, preferably in a favorite spot where he sleeps every day so that the area doesn’t feel unfamiliar.
5. Protect your dog from heaters
Dogs will often seek heat during cold winter weather by snuggling too close to heating sources. Avoid space heaters and install baseboard radiator covers to avoid your pet getting burned. Fireplaces also pose a major threat so please make sure you have a pet proof system to keep your heat-seeking pal out of harm’s way!
Dry and cold weather can do a number on your pet’s skin. Help prevent dry, flaky skin by adding a skin and coat supplement to his food. Coconut and fish oils are easy foods that can help keep your pet’s skin and coat healthy. If you find your pet’s paws, ears or tail are dry or cracking, you can also apply coconut oil topically as needed.
7. No overfeeding please!
Although dogs may need an extra layer in winter, make sure it comes from a coat and not a layer of fat. Unless your dog lives outdoors during the winter, he usually won’t need any additional calories during the winter chill. Cold temperatures may even bring on lazy behavior and the need for fewer calories. Be attentive to your dog’s activity level and adjust his calories accordingly. A high quality, whole foods, preferably raw meat based diet will help ensure a healthy coat and good energy for the cold winter months.
8. Keep your dog hydrated
Dogs can dehydrate just as quickly in winter as summer. Although many dogs eat snow, it’s not an adequate substitute for fresh water. If your dog spends time outdoors in your yard, make sure he has access to a water bowl, check it often and break ice that forms on top.
9. Groom your dog
Your dog needs a clean, well-groomed coat to keep him properly insulated. This is especially important if your dog spends a lot of time outdoors. After bathing, dry your dog thoroughly, especially before allowing him outside
10. Paw care is a must
Just as we tend to develop foot cracks in winter, dogs can also suffer from cracked pads. If your dog has furry feet, trim the hair that grows between his pads to prevent ice buildup between the pads. Winter salt on city sidewalks can also burn your dog’s pads and is toxic, so after walks around the neighborhood, rinse or wipe your dog’s paws to remove any salt – you don’t want him licking it off. If your dog shows signs of discomfort when walking outside on frozen or salted surfaces, consider using dog booties to protect his paws
11. Snow removal
Snow can be a lot of fun but also dangerous for your dog. Snow piled near fences offers your dog escape routes that even well trained dogs often can’t resist. When you clear snow in your yard, pile it away from fences to prevent your dog from climbing over. Snow and ice often accumulate on rooftops and if the sun is out or as temperatures rise, this accumulation can slide and injure your dog. If you can’t clear the snow from the roof, keep your dog away from the roof overhang to prevent injury.
12. Watch where your dog plays
Although your dog is likely to be having a great time outdoors, take frequent indoor breaks for water and warming and don’t ever stay out too long. If you’re walking or playing in unfamiliar areas, keep your dog close. It’s easy for him to venture onto unsafe surfaces such as frozen ponds or lakes. These may be covered in snow and not easily visible.
13. Avoid exposure to toxins
With winter comes antifreeze. Antifreeze tastes sweet and dogs (as well as some children!) will readily lick or drink it. Antifreeze is extremely toxic and just a small amount can be fatal. Keep your dog out of the garage and off the driveway where she may encounter antifreeze or other harmful chemicals.
14. NEVER leave your dog unattended in the car, no matter what the season
Just as cars can get dangerously hot in summer, freezing cold temperatures are equally dangerous for your dog in winter. Leaving the car running involves additional risks, including carbon monoxide poisoning if the car is parked in a garage. Leave your dog at home when you go out to run errands.
15. Special care for seniors
Cold weather will often aggravate existing medical conditions in dogs, particularly arthritis. It’s very important to maintain an exercise regimen with your arthritic dog, but be mindful of slippery surfaces and make sure your dog has a warm soft rest area to recuperate after activity. If you don’t already give your senior dog a natural joint supplement to lubricate the joints and ease the discomfort of arthritis, you may want to consider adding one in winter. Just like people, dogs are more susceptible to other illnesses during winter weather.
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CBD – NATURAL RELIEF FOR YOUR PET
Cannabidiol (CBD), one of the active constituents of the cannabis plant, has profound healing and balancing effects on all mammals. Pet owners have used it for a broad spectrum of medical and behavioral issues — cancer pain, arthritis, muscle spasms, seizures, neurological and digestive disorders, anxieties, obsessions, past traumas, withdrawal, mood, and memory. During recovery from illness or surgery, CBD can stimulate the appetite and speed healing. At the end of life, it can ease the pain and fear your pet may be experiencing. CBD does all this by stimulating the endocannabinoid system.
THE ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM AND HOW IT WORKS
Named after the plant that led to its discovery, the endocannabinoid system is a network of receptors located throughout the body. Short-lived natural endocannabinoid substances are synthesized on demand by the body to maintain homeostasis, a stable internal environment. When these internal mechanisms lag behind the body’s needs, supplementing with extra CBD can help. Research also suggests that supplementing can coax the body to build more receptors so natural cannabinoids will work more effectively.
Two types of receptors have been identified: CB1 receptors, predominantly in the brain, nervous system, glands and organs; and CB2 receptors, found mainly in the regulatory cells of the immune system. Many tissues contain both receptors, each linked to a different action. A key role of the endocannabinoid system is controlling inflammation by up-regulating or down-regulating the immune response. An overactive response can lead to allergies and auto-immune problems; an underactive one can leave the body susceptible to infections and the unchecked proliferation of cancer cells.
SAFETY: HEMP VS. MARIJUANA
Although hemp and marijuana are both classified as cannabis, they are distinctly different varieties. Recreational marijuana is very high in euphoria-producing THC, while hemp plants contain virtually no THC but have high levels of beneficial CBD. Hemp-derived CBD is not psychoactive and won’t make an animal high. It has no unpleasant side effects, and hemp products containing less than .3% THC are legal for sale in all 50 states. CBD from hemp is not regulated as a drug, has no known toxic level, and it is impossible to overdose.
DOG SITUATIONS THAT CBD MAY HELP EASE:
• lack of appetite
• separation anxiety
• excessive barking
• nausea from car rides
• lack of vitality and energy
• trips to the vet or groomer
• muscle spasms or seizures
• pain from cancer or arthritis
• recovery from surgery or illness
• pacing or inability to settle or relax
• fear of thunderstorms, fireworks or loud noises
• grumpiness or aggression toward another animal
CAT SITUATIONS THAT CBD MAY HELP EASE:
• multi-cat households
• poor appetite
• constant hiding
• fear of the litter box
• eating inappropriate objects
• crying with no apparent cause
• trips to the vet or riding in the car
• distress from a change in the environment
• grumpiness or aggression with another animal
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Pumpkin, Pumpkin, Pumpkin - it’s everywhere!!! During the fall season everybody is crazy for pumpkin.
With October being National Pet Wellness Month, let’s look at the benefits of pumpkin for your pets.
PUMPKIN: Can help in calming your pet’s stomach by adding fiber. This helps in bulking up loose stools and it also can help with constipation. (For the safety and health of your pet, if loose stools persist please see your veterinarian…)
With the added fiber, your pets will also feel fuller and this may aid in weight loss. Substitute 1 Tablespoon of 100% Pure Pumpkin, Pumpkin Firm Up, or Frozen OC Raw Pumpkin Rox (available at WPE), for ¼ cup of food.
Pumpkin contains Vitamin A for vision, Vitamin C to boost immunity and joint health, slows aging, and Zinc to improve skin and coat.
Let’s not forget about the cats! Pumpkin aids in moving hairballs through the digestive system, and also adds vitamins and health benefits.
If your pets don’t take easily to pumpkin try making pumpkin meatballs. Take canned food from WPE and mix it with pumpkin blend, shape into meatballs and freeze. Thaw slightly and add to food.
Try a Pumpkin Latte: Primal Goat’s milk (available in WPE freezer section) mixed with pumpkin; add to our fun bone or paw print molds and freeze! Pop out and feed as a treat or on food.
So go ahead and feed that pumpkin, it’s super healthy and your pets will be happy!!