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December 2018

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It’s the busiest time for travel of the year, with vacations and visiting family members when the new year comes around. Of course, bringing your pup with you across country may seem like a daunting task, but you got to to do what you got to do to have your best friend with you! 

Today we’re sharing some tips to make bringing Fido with you on the road a little easier. 

1. Pack all of the essentials (but not too much)! 

Source: @fridasfluffyworld

Food, treats, poop bags, and a favorite toy. Don’t go overboard on things your dog may need. Chances are, if you forgot something, you can get it when you arrive at your destination. Most important of all, don’t forget to bring any medications your pup may be on! 

2. Bring portable versions of everything you need.

Source: @howl_and_growl

Forget the metal water bowl. Leave that at home! Get yourself travel-ready versions of those essentials if you can. Whether it be an on-the-go water bottle and bowl combination or a fold up pet bed, make your life a little easier with these made-for-travel items. 

3. Get your pup travel-approved by your vet.

Source: @_ba.iley._

Not all dogs are fit for travel. If your dog is sick or injured, it’s probably going to be a no-no. If your dog is one that gets over-stimulated or upset when their routine is disrupted, they should also probably stay home. Have your vet give you the thumbs up before heading out with your dog. Make sure they are up to date on their vaccinations and consider having your pup microchipped if he’s not already. 

4. Double check rules and regulations where you’re going

Source: @olivethefancyfrenchie

If you’re staying at a hotel, make sure you study up on all the fees and rules associated with having a pet stay with you. Often times, you’ll have to pay a pet cleaning fee and it’s important to note that dogs are usually not allowed to be left alone without supervision. Leash laws where you’re going may be different from what you’re accustomed to, so double check there as well.

5. Do a trial run at home if you can.

Source: @mysimonagram

Whether you are driving or flying, you can probably try and get your dog accustomed to some of the things they’ll have to do when you head out for travel. Get them used to the crate or carrier they’ll be riding in. See if your pup needs a blanket or cover over the carrier to help with visual stimuli. The more they are used to this confined environment before you go, the easier the actual trip will be. 

6. Feed your pup early and potty often while you’re on the go

Source: @penniethepoodle

To avoid motion sickness, feed your pup well before you hit the road or board the airplane. Empty them out as much as possible with a nice long walk before heading out. While you’re on the road, try not to give too much water. Ice cubes are a nice alternative and provide hydration in moderate amounts. Whenever you have the chance, potty your pup so they don’t have to hold it too long during a long and stressful journey. 

7. Find your vacation routine

Source: @mariavanonen

Dogs love a stable routine. Taking them on the go may disrupt their normal day-to-day, but it doesn’t mean you can’t establish a new routine while you’re on your vacation or visiting your in-laws. Try and keep them on the same schedule every day while you’re away. Your pup will thank you! 

Wishing you and your four-legged family members safe and happy travels this time of year! 

Featured image via @littlecooperbear 

Every year, deciding on gifts for your loved ones can end up being a head scratcher. Thankfully, dog people all have one thing in common: we love a good trinket that reminds us of our favorite four-legged family member.

Today we’re sharing some stocking stuffer ideas for the dog lovers in your life. Who knows, maybe you’ll find something in here that “Santa” will get for you, too 😉 

1. Customizable Rope Leash

Source: Amazon

Chic and functional, this gift will be useful for any of your friends with a dog. Pick from a variety of colors to make the perfect customized combination.

2. Portable Dog Bowl Water Bottle

Source: Uncommon Goods

This nifty contraption doubles as a water bottle AND a bowl. Thanks to gravity, it won’t spill when you’re on the go as the water is released into the bowl for your dog only when you squeeze the bottle. A great gift for the dog lover in your life who loves hiking or taking their pup with them on adventures.

3. Personalized Dog Plushy

Source: Etsy

All you need is a photo of your BFF’s dog for this cute personalized gift to light up their holiday. 

4. Dog Wine Charms

Source: World Market

For the friend who just wants to drink wine and cuddle with their dog all day. These charms are super handy for ensuring guests don’t confuse their glasses at the next doggy playdate get-together.

5. Dog Massager

Source: PetWell

If you know anyone who spends more money pampering their dog than themselves, gift them this therapeutic Dual Point Dog Massager. Perfect for alleviating muscle tension and stiffness that our four-legged friends experience from romping in the backyard all day.

6. Dog Tail Hooks

Source: Grandin Road

Because who doesn’t love looking at dog butts all day? These Dog Tail Hooks are the cheekiest way to organize your leashes, collars, harnesses, car keys, or outerwear. 

7. 2019 Dog Shaming Calendar

Source: Barnes & Nobles

Who doesn’t love a good chuckle on a daily basis? These hilarious dog shaming photos are sure to get you through all of 2019, one day at a time.

8. Scented Candle

Source: Etsy

Great if your friend has an especially gassy dog. These rich, fruity candles will fill the room with pleasant aromas (and cover up some of those inevitable nasty odors that come with living with a pup)!

9. Custom Dog Socks

Source: Photo Socks

So you never have to be apart from your dog. Just look down to be reminded of how much of a good boy (or girl) they are!

10. Bad Dog Wisdom Tumblers

Source: Uncommon Goods

A fetching set of tumblers featuring Fido teaching his owners a few new tricks.

11. “Tell Your Dog I Said Hi” hat

Source: We Rate Dogs

It’s official, dad hats are in. This minimally designed hat tells others what’s really on your mind. Dogs. All day. Every day.

12. Custom Photo Book

Source: @emwng

Print some favorite memories in this custom photo book for a well designed and sentimental gift, available in both hardcover and softcover. 

Featured image via @theredmavrador

For most people, the term “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” refers to the holiday season. For us dog lovers, we often refer to the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” as puppy season! The holiday season is often the time of year when a new furry member is introduced into the family. Not only are people bringing puppies home, but there is also an increase in dog shelter adoptions. We encourage you to help make a shelter dog’s holiday extra special this year.

Regardless if you are bringing home a 8 week old puppy or 10 year old “young at heart” pup, you’ll want to find a Veterinarian that you can take him to for checkups or illness. While your dog may be healthy now, you don’t want to be rushing around trying to find a Veterinarian if he were to suddenly become ill. It is important to find a Veterinarian that is not just close to you based on location, but someone who you are comfortable with. After all, you and your Veterinarian will be making important health decisions for your dog. We put together these 5 must ask questions when interviewing Veterinarians, so that you can be sure you find the perfect match.

1. Where did you attend veterinary school?

This is a basic question that any pet parent should be asking. This gives you insight into your Veterinarian’s education. This is also a good way to inquire about any continuing education that your Veterinarian may participate in and his surgery experience. Not all Veterinarians perform surgeries outside of routine spay and neuters.

Photo Credit: @skylakeanimalhospital

2. How many doctors are in the practice?

It is important to not only know how many Veterinarians are in the practice, but also who they are. There may be times when your Veterinarian is out of the office and you will need to see another Veterinarian within the practice.

In addition to knowing who the other staff Veterinarians in the practice are, it is a good idea to inquire about any services they may or may not perform and if they see emergency cases when your Veterinarian is out of the office.

3. What are your payment options/package deals?

It’s good to know if your Veterinarian’s office offers any type of payment plans or if payment is due up front. This can help you to prepare for unexpected Vet bills.

And while most practices require payment at the time of service, many practices offer puppy and/or senior packages. Puppies require frequent veterinary care, which leads to higher than normal veterinary bills. To offset this expense, many practices offer puppy packages, which give you discounts on exams during your puppies vaccination series and/or bundled vaccine pricing.

As for our “young at heart” senior dogs, many practices will offer discounts on certain days for senior dogs or offer a senior package that mimics the puppy discount package with discounts on annual exams and testing. It’s just as important for your senior dog to have routine blood work tests as it is for a young dog.

Photo Credit: @drscrewloose_toy

Photo Credit: @drscrewloose_toy

4. Who do you recommend during off hours/emergencies?

More than likely, your Veterinarian’s office is not open 24/7, 365 days a year. In addition to asking who your Veterinarian recommends in case of an emergency, ask if his practice has a magnet for the 24/7 pet hospital that he recommends for your home. While it may be unsightly, keep this magnet on the side of your refrigerator in case of emergency or better yet, add the animal hospital as a contact in your phone so you can easily access it. It can be hard to remember the name of an animal hospital that you do not regularly go to during a stressful emergency.

Along with this, you should inquire about overnight stays if your dog needs to have surgery at your Veterinarian’s office. Not all practices have staff members that stay overnight. This may require you to transport your dog to a nearby pet hospital for overnight monitoring.

Photo Credit: Blue Pearl Vet

5. Does your practice offer an on-site pharmacy?

Most of the time, it’s ideal for you to get any prescriptions your dog may need while your at your Veterinarian’s office. Ask your Veterinarian if they are able to give you same day prescriptions for any medications they may prescribe to your dog.

Photo Credit: Rolesville Pet Care

A cheaper alternative to buying your medications from your Veterinarian’s office for non-emergency prescriptions is to ask your Veterinarian for a written script for any prescribed medications. You can have your dog’s prescription filled at your local pharmacy. Unfortunately, you can’t use your insurance to fill these medications but they are often much cheaper than your Veterinarian’s office.

These are the basic starting point questions to help you decide which Veterinarian you are most comfortable seeing. Keep in mind that this person will be helping you care for and prolong the life of your dog, so you may want to go into further detail when interviewing for a new Veterinarian. (i.e. vaccine protocols, raw food stance or anything else that may be important to you as a dog parent!)  And don’t be shy, ask your fellow neighbors or local social media dog parents who they recommend.

Photo Credit: @drdanthevet

What are some of the questions you asked your Veterinarian when you first met or how did you decide on the Veterinarian that you are currently seeing? We’d love for you to share with other dog parents by leaving a comment below or tagging us on your Instagram, Facebook or Twitter posts with #benebone!

Featured Image: @dr.evanantin