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News and Information about Dogs, Cats, and Pet Products

Open Farm is one of the newest brands we started carrying at Two Bostons!  They offer your cats and dogs with the highest quality kibble along with dog treats and they just introduced their Freeze-Dried Dog Food.  We wanted them in our stores, not only because your pets will love their product but also because of their very high standards. Here is why you should give them a try today! (Added bonus: All products are 20% off until 11/22/17)

  • Nutrition ~ Premium nutrition, delivered naturally. Open Farm is a family-run business, so they choose farmers that share the same exceptional quality.  The grain-free recipes focus on a limited set of premium proteins, fruits and veggies that are raised naturally, responsibly and humanely.They stay away from unhealthy fillers:
      • All Open Farm recipes are 100% grain-free
      • They never use any corn, wheat, soy or rice
      • Absolutely NO animal byproducts
      • Free from meat meals – using only ocean-caught fish
    • Nutritious ingredients in every recipe:
      • Non-GMO fruits and veggies
      • Include generous portions of nutritious coconut and fish oils
      • Use prebiotic fibers in every batch to support healthy digestion
      • Their recipes are designed for rotation
      • Options that are 100% poultry free and potato free
  • Animal Welfare ~ Raising the bar for farm animal welfare. They source all of their meat from animals that are raised with kindness and respect. Not only does this result in happier and healthier farm animals, it leads to a higher quality of meat for our pets!
  • Sustainability ~ Better food from a sustainable source. Sustainable Fishing, Farming and Packaging!
  • Partners ~ Partnerships that make a difference. Open Farm partners with third party organizations that are leaders in humane and sustainable sourcing practices, so you can trust that your pet’s food is coming from a good place.
  • Transparency ~ Pet food you can trust. Where your pet’s food comes from shouldn’t be a mystery. That is why they provide detailed information on every ingredient used in the recipes. 

Open Farm freeze-dried dog food is an upgrade to their already amazing kibble. The freeze-dried raw recipes are made with humanely raised meats, organic fruits and veggies, topped with superfoods like organic coconut oil and tumeric. You can use their freeze-dried raw food as a meal, or a mixer to kibble.  Just scoop add water and serve! You can get a bag of Open Farm freeze-dried in a variety of recipes: Grass-Fed Beef, Homestead Turkey, Surf & Turf and Harvest Chicken.

Try Open Farm today and receive 20% off until 11/22/17!

Every morning around 6am my dog, Polly wants to eat and every morning at 6am I am officially woken up by her bowl scraping against the tile as she pushes it around while she eats. Can anyone relate? The sound is unbearable; especially at six in the morning! There simply must be a better way!!

Thankfully, at Two Bostons we carry Ono’s Good Bowl. The base of these bowls are a mat that suction to the surface making it near impossible for any dog to push the bowl or tip the bowl. The silicone base does not harbor bacteria and has a small lip that makes it challenging for paws (or tiny hands) to move. The mat provides easy clean-up for dogs that are messy drinkers or eaters as well. The bowl itself is a stainless steel, doesn’t wear, and is removable from the mat. The mat is 100% silicone, BPA/BPS/PVS/phthalate free, and is dishwasher safe. It even comes in multiple colors and sizes! The three sizes available are, single small (10 x 10 x 1.6), single medium (11.5 x 11.5 x 1.9), and double small (18 x 10 x 1.6). The small bowl holds 16 ounces, while the medium bowl holds 32 ounces. This bowl is great for cats and for dogs! While the mat is dishwasher safe, the company recommends hand washing the bowl.

I have a small single bowl for Polly and at first she was confused that she didn’t need to push the bowl around. But, after a couple of meal times she embraced this bowl and we have never gone back since! The bowls look really modern, making it a great purchase for people who want their pet’s items to blend into the home’s decor. I am certainly considering purchasing a second one of these for the communal water bowl just because of how sleek they look! I certainly recommend this product to anyone who needs a new bowl or just wants a better looking bowl.

Lastly, the company stands behind their bowls, they are made to endure the lifetime of the pet. If there is any concern or issues with the product, Ono encourages the consumer to contact them to fix the problem. What a fantastic company! I certainly will be coming back for more bowls.

 

Do you find yourself getting tired of drinking plain water? I know I do! I can often be found with a cup of tea or coffee in hand. I want to stay hydrated, but also want some flavor. I think our furry companions feel the same way. Served plain or as a meal topped, bone broth is an excellent way to boost dog and cat hydration.

Many cats and dogs are dehydrated when fed a kibble based diet due to the low moisture content of kibble. An easy and nutritious way to increase the palatability of food. Not interested in offering bone broth at meal times? No worries, it can be given as a treat! At only 9 calories per quarter cup, pet parents can feel great about giving this low calorie yet nutrient dense treat to dogs of all sizes. You can even freeze it to make a low calorie and fun summer time treat! 

There are quite a few health benefits your dog receives when they drink the bone broth; similar to the health benefits offered to us when we drink tea. Bone broth is a natural supplement to aid in joint health. The broth contains glucosamine, chondroitin, and hyaluronic acid. Even more importantly, these health benefiting properties are not digested, but rather absorbed through the pet’s body. Bone broth also aids in liver detoxification. Glycine is a naturally occurring chemical that aids in liver detox. Chances are your pet has been exposed to some things that have taken a toll on their liver (think flea and tick preventatives, home cleaning supplies, lying on fertilized grass, etc.). Thankfully, bone broth contains lots of glycine which naturally cleanses the liver. The health benefits associated with bone broth are endless!

A favorite bone broth at Two Bostons is Caru’s grass-fed beef bone broth. Costing only $12.99, this product is made in the USA with 100% human grade ingredients. This broth is free of grain, gluten and genetically modified ingredients! Containing only 9, very readable ingredients, this is a product that you can feel good about giving to your pet!

I tried bone broth warmed as well as frozen with my pups. My dogs joyously yet anxiously wagged their tails waiting for the bowls to come out of the microwave. When I put the bowls down they licked the bowls dry! Since it has been warm in the Chicagoland area, I thought it would be fun to try the product frozen as well. It was a huge hit with my dogs. Maybe now they will not stare at me when I eat a frozen treat because they will have their own to enjoy!

Stop into any Two Bostons and ask a team member to point out this amazing product!

 

We have two NEW products at Two Bostons that I am very excited about, raw turkey necks and chicken backs from Primal!

Raw meaty bones are a natural toothbrush for dogs and cats; when they tear, crunch and rip the meat off of bones it cleans their teeth and massages their gums. The chewing and tearing action also provides mental stimulation, jaw exercise and increased muscle tone. The connective tissue in raw meaty bones promotes joint health.  Which is why my four Bernese Mountain Dogs enjoy raw meaty bones throughout the week.

Turkey necks are thick, bendable and crunchy, they are the perfect size for a medium to large dog. Primal’s turkey necks are raised in the United States without antibiotics or added hormones. They are a great natural source of selenium and zinc. Selenium improves joint health, boosts the immune system and keeps the skin and coat healthy. Zinc is essential for skin and coat health.

Chicken backs are small with soft small bones, they are a great size for small to medium dogs and cats. I give these to my large dogs, but I am fortunate not to have any gulpers. They are not recommended for a dog that would be likely to swallow it whole. Primal’s chicken backs are raised in the United States without antibiotics or added hormones. They are a great source of glucosamine and chondroitin making them great for joint health.

Primal’s raw meaty bones are of benefit to dogs and cats no matter what diet you are currently feeding. They provide teeth cleaning benefits when they eat raw or freeze dried patties or nuggets. When added to a kibble or canned diet, important naturally occurring vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids are provided.

As with any chew, always supervise your pet while they are chewing!

Stop into any Two Bostons store and one of our Team Members can help you pick out the perfect raw bone for your dog to try today. Purchase Primal between 9/17 – 9/23/17 and receive an extra 50 entries into the drawing for the Shopping Spree! For more information about the Shopping Spree visit twobostons.com/spree.

 

 

It’s pretty amazing how often we at Two Bostons hear about dogs with digestive issues. From pickiness and anal gland problems to vomiting and diarrhea, almost every dog is bothered by at least one of these problems at some stage of their lives.

If your dog has digestive issues, or if you are looking to be proactive in preventing them, a quality diet is a great place to start. Talk to any Team Member at Two Bostons and find out why the foods we carry, from kibble to dehydrated and raw, are some of the best available. Plus, our Free Food Faster™ program can save you money on pet food!

In addition to feeding your dog a high-quality diet, consider adding a new supplement with some pretty astonishing digestive benefits. Introducing Flora4 100% Raw Organic Sprouted Seeds! Sounds like crunchy granola, right? But just wait till you hear about what this stuff can do!

  • First, Flora4 contains NO synthetic enzymes or probiotics. All enzymes and probiotic strains are food-based and occur naturally. So, you’ll see a very short and pronounceable ingredient list on the bag, which we always like!
  • If you serve your dog plain raw meat or meat you’ve cooked yourself, adding Flora4 will complete the vitamin and mineral profile dogs require.
  • It can help with scooting, constipation and diarrhea, because of its combination of soluble fiber and intense levels of LIVE probiotics.
  • Flora4 can help with skin and coat conditions due to therapeutic levels of Omega-3 fatty acids.
  • If your dog has recently had surgery or has gone off solid food, Flora4 can be added to goat’s milk or bone broth to help restore balance of good gut bacteria. It’s also very effective in re-establishing healthy gut bacteria levels after an antibiotic treatment.
  • If your dog is diabetic or has yeast issues, Flora4 is a great alternative to pumpkin for a digestive aid, since it’s a low glycemic and low sugar product.
  • Flora4 can also help reduce hairballs in cats with its enzymes and fiber.

This product is suitable for grain-free diets, and you can try it out in a 1.5 oz packet or an 18 oz bag. The small packets are great for travel, and Flora4 itself is a ground, powder-like product that’s easy to sprinkle onto pet’s food. Come try it soon and see what it can do to keep your pet’s digestive system running smoothly! It’s Maple-approved, too!

Forget about Christmas, this is the actual best time of the year. The smell of fresh cut grass, the beautiful colors in our gardens, the warm weather, the list goes on and on for us.

For our pets, mainly dogs, this time of the year is great too! Longer walks, more time at the dog park, all the squirrels running around and OH WAIT, WHAT WAS THAT? FIREWORKS?!?!?! To us loud unexpected noises are little more than a nuisance, but to our furry family members they can be extremely scary. Many try to run and hide in a dark corner of the house, jump on their owners lap for protection or even scarier – run out of their own yard because they are so disoriented.

My Moe, at the first sign of a thunderstorm or fireworks, will get up from wherever he is and hide under the desk in our spare room if I forget to give him Happy Traveler beforehand. I give it to him about an hour before the storm hits or before I know fireworks will be starting. Since it helps keep him calm for 4-6 hours, I usually only have to give him one dose. If there is a storm all day I give him a dose every 5 hours. Happy Traveler calms my guy down without making him groggy or out-of-it. L-Tryptophan, Valerian root, chamomile and St. John’s Wort are the natural calming ingredients that are safe for cats and dogs 12 weeks and older. On stormy days Happy Traveler naturally helps my Moe stay calm and confident.

For stronger storms I give him a little extra Happy Traveler to keep him calm and make sure his favorite penguin toy is nearby for added comfort. That’s what is so awesome about his product! Since it’s all natural you can adjust the dose as needed after an hour if the recommended dose isn’t quite enough for your pet.

Happy Traveler is such a versatile product because it can help in situations that you might not have thought of. I give my Daphne Happy Traveler before nail trims to keep her calm. Nail trims still aren’t her favorite, but the process is quicker because she isn’t as scared of the situation. If you avoid car rides with your pet because they get sick, Happy Traveler can help with their motion sickness. Your pet’s anxiety of being left alone while you’re at work can also be relieved by Happy Traveler. That means your pet could be a good boy or girl and not chew on your furniture while you’re gone because they don’t know how to relieve their anxiety any other way.

If you’ve noticed situational anxiety in your pet, Happy Traveler is a great product to try out. Many team members here at Two Bostons use it for our own pets and we would be happy to share our experiences with you! We hope you and your pets have a great anxiety-free summer!

 

 

 

Hello and happy Summer! We all hope that the new season brings you sunshine and long walks with your dog! Speaking of walks, we have our weekly walks at Downtown Naperville and Burr Ridge stores. Just meet us with your dog on a standard leash at 6:30 pm every Thursday for a walk with fellow dog lovers.

Whether it’s a Two Bostons weekly walk with other pups or just a stroll with me, after I get back from a walk with my Maple, she immediately leads me to her treat tin for some Bocce’s Belly Aid treats, Bare Bites, or Honest Kitchen Proper Toppers (all of which she highly recommends!). Then, since she’s a senior citizen, she typically goes right to her bed for some rest.

A dog’s bed is a special place for her. It’s a sanctuary, a safe place, and a relaxing retreat. And one thing that makes a dog feel extra secure is a reminder that her pack (or family) is nearby. Cue the Molly Mutt pet bed!

This fun new product at Two Bostons combines style with earth-friendliness! Here’s how the Molly Mutt bed works. It comes in two parts, the stuff sack and the duvet. You dig out some old clothes, towels, pillows, or blankets, and pack them into the stuff sack. Then just zip the duvet around the stuff sack and your dog has a cute bed that smells like one of their favorite things: YOU!

Molly Mutt duvets are machine washable. There’s an optional moisture barrier that keeps the contents of the stuff sack dry in case your dog has an accident or something gets spilled on the duvet. The duvet comes in several cute patterns that you can change with the seasons or whenever you feel like redecorating. Another bonus: when you fill the stuff sack, you’re re-purposing old clothing AND you get to decide how firm or squishy you want your dog’s bed to be! You get a lot of control with the Molly Mutt bed, and the best part is you can always change your mind! No one knows your dog better than you do, so make the bed as personal as you’d like. If we don’t have the duvet style in the size you’re looking for, we’d be happy to special order it for you. That’s what we do here at Two Bostons, we make pets happy!

Watch this cute video of the Molly Mutt bed being assembled, then come see us at any Two Bostons store and we can talk about beds! Or we can talk about grooming products, treats, chews, toys, or our new Free Food Faster program! Have a wonderful week.

 

 

Top Tips and Products for a Clean Start this Spring

We love this time of year. The days are longer, our walks with our pets are longer (and warmer) and for whatever reason, Spring makes us want to clean!

As you plan your Spring Cleaning projects, include your best friend in your planning.

Here are some great tips and great products to freshen up your pet’s life – and yours as well!

 

Wash it!

Your pet’s “stuff” could use a good cleaning. All of it. Toys, beds, dishes, collars, winter clothes, carriers, you name it.  Most of your pet’s products should be washed frequently, and Spring is a perfect time to start fresh.

Toys –  Clean ‘em off, spruce ‘em up. Wash most soft, plush toys in your laundry with a mild, unscented detergent, and hard toys in either the dishwasher or sink (try a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water or water and a mild dish soap).

Too many toys? Time for a few new ones? Consider donating your used-but-nice toys to pets who aren’t lucky enough to have a Two Bostons pet parent. Your pet probably deserves a new toy or two, anyway, right? (Bring your clean, used toys to any Two Boston store and we’ll make sure they find a good home.)

Collars and Leashes – Clean nylon web and cloth collars and leashes by soaking in a bowl with warm water and a tablespoon of your dog’s shampoo for 15-20 minutes. Rub the collar against itself to remove ground-in dirt. (Need a new look? We have a rainbow of fun colors and styles to match your pet’s personality. Stop in and see what’s new for Spring).

While you’re at it, be sure to check your pet’s tags as well to make sure they’re secure and readable.

Beds & Clothes – Wash removable bed covers and clothes in the washing machine with an unscented detergent (and much more frequently than once a year). Bed still looking or smelling a little suspect after washing? It’s time for a new one. She’d love a comfy new crib from Two Bostons.

 

Out with the old, in with the new

Check your pet’s wellness and grooming products to make sure they’re there and you’re ready when the time calls. Out of date medications and wellness products? Toss them and get new. Set with shampoos, wipes, and conditioners? Stock up – Spring means rain and rain means mud.

Our customers love our line of Bobbi Panter shampoos  Good selection of delicious scents, tear free, gentle, and made with natural ingredients for clean, thick, soft coats.

Want a quick, easy way to keep your pet clean and smelling great between baths? Our Earthbath Dog Grooming Wipes provide a convenient waterless touch-up solution for muddy paws, removing dander, pollen, and dirt, and leaving your pet smelling fresh and clean. Great for cats as well. Be prepared – have them on hand for when you need them.

Do a quick check of your other grooming products – toenail clippers, ear and dental wipes, brushes and whatever else you use – even occasionally. You should also take a gander at your treat drawer and toss any old treats.

Keep your space clean

Dog Gone Smart Brown Dirty Dog Doormat

 

Our versatile Dirty Dog Doormat isn’t just for inside or outside the door anymore (although you’ll want one there for muddy paws). Our customers tell us they love them under water/food bowls, in crates, in their cars, or even just to lay on (well, not the customers, but their dogs love to lay on them). The plush, velvety-soft microfiber is super absorbent, sucking up 7x its weight in water, mud, and mess, and its non-skid backing keeps it where you want it. It’s a great product, is available in five colors, and it’s even machine washable.

 

Spring is the perfect time of year to do a comprehensive clean of your pet’s stuff and make a list of what you need for the summer ahead. You’ll feel great for being a good pet owner and your best friend will certainly appreciate having everything looking and feeling and smelling clean and fresh.

When you’re done with your Spring cleaning and summer prep, celebrate the season! Take your best friend out for a long walk, and feel free walk in to any Two Boston store so you can treat your buddy to a new toy, natural chew, or a yummy Spring-themed cookie from our gourmet bakery.

And we’d love to see you again, both of you.

Preppy Puppy Bakery Tulip

I will assume that you want the cold weather to go away and Spring to stay as much as I do.  And this includes our pets too!  We are all really starting to feel the cabin fever and have a lot of pent-up energy.  This weekend we are going to be having our Free Harness Fittings, so I thought I would get you thinking about getting out of the house and out on regular, relaxing and enjoyable walks!

Most complaints about dog walking is about them pulling…Have you ever asked yourself, “Who’s walking who?” this is for you!!

1. Collars, Leashes and Harnesses: You want to find a collar that is an appropriate width for the size of your dog and a leash that is easy for you to hold and handle. We have all kinds of different leashes to choose from! We strongly recommend that you use a standard leash instead of a retractable leash.  Read about retractable leashes in a previous Blog: Do you know why you can’t find retractable leashes at Two Bostons?

Using a harness to walk your dog is safer and healthier. Placing them in a well-fitted harness will be much better for them and will give you more control as well!

If you have a dog that REALLY pulls (or maybe you want a very well-mannered walker) you should try the No-Pull Dog Harness by SPORN. This is the best no-pull system that we have found. The SPORN fits just like a regular harness but pulls up on the dogs’ armpits, which is a pressure point, when the dog pulls. This doesn’t hurt the dog at all, but it does make it uncomfortable if they continue to pull.  The best thing about this is that you don’t have to correct your dog, he will correct himself!

2. Poop Bags: Let’s face it, they do it…so be prepared! We have several different poop bags and poop bag holders to choose from. One of our favorite Poop Bags and Dispensers in the Lavender or non-Scented Bags by Earth Rated. These poop bags are for those who want to go green! Made of 100% renewable resources and dissolve in as little as 40 days.

3. Hydration: If you are just going around the block you may not need to worry about taking water with you, but if you are on a longer walk or it is in the middle of a hot summer day, you will want to keep your pups hydrated! We have a few different options for you to choose from. One of those is the Gulpy Water Dispenser by Kyjen. It is easy to use, doesn’t leak and you can easily carry it with the built-in belt clip.

 

The most important thing is to have fun on your walks! Stop into Two Bostons this Saturday, (3/11/17) for our Harness Fittings and we will help you find all the right walking gear for you and your pups!

Two Bostons will also be starting our very popular Weekly Walks on Thursday, April 6, 2017 at our Downtown Naperville and Burr Ridge stores.

As we continue through National Pet Dental Health Month, we want to make sure that people don’t think that a professional vet cleaning is the only strategy pet parents have at our disposal — there’s actually so much we can do! In our Blog “Have You Looked In Your Pets Mouth?” we talked about products we that can help with your pets dental health.  But, did you know that diet and feeding strategies can also make a huge difference in your pet’s dental health?

Most wolves and coyotes in the wild have very strong, clean teeth.  Animal experts have studied this at great length so that thankfully, most of us will never need to confirm it in ourselves! But the reason it’s true is because of their diet. These wild canine cousins regularly eat a raw diet that includes meat, gristle, fibrous tissue, cartilage, and actual bone. The chewing process itself is so abrasive to their teeth and gums that it breaks down plaque formations and “scrubs” teeth on a daily basis.

In much the same way, a raw diet can help control tartar build-up on the teeth of our pets. You may notice that most commercial raw food are prepared to some degree — ground up and often shaped into forms that are convenient to store and/or feed. However, these patties and pieces still contain tiny bone fragments that have the similar effect as a fine-grit sandpaper. When your pet chews these foods, the mild abrasive process helps to scour teeth and gums by breaking down existing plaque and tartar deposits.

As we have talked about before, kibble is like having a crunchy snack like popcorn, pretzels, or a granola bar. It does not clean your pet’s teeth or gums. Do you remember how those felt in your mouth? Did your teeth feel refreshingly clean afterward? Kibble has something in common with these snacks: It basically begins its life as a starchy carbohydrate, which is then ground into paste that’s hardened or baked into tiny nuggets that are easy to feed. When your pet’s saliva breaks these nuggets down, they revert to their starchy, pasty form inside the mouth. This paste works its way between teeth and adheres to the gum line. Unless it’s dislodged somehow, that’s where it stays. See our recent blog for some of those products that can help dislodge and clean when feeding kibble.

Raw foods, on the other hand, are composed largely of meat proteins and natural enzymes. Proteins take longer to digest, so they aren’t broken down as quickly by saliva in the mouth. Enzymes immediately go to work dissolving residues on your pet’s teeth. And of course, we have already mentioned that tiny abrasive fragments act like a scrubbing toothbrush. When you feed your pet a raw diet, starch residues around the teeth are kept to a minimum and the chewing process itself begins to work in your pet’s favor.

If you want to learn more about your pets’ dental health or adding raw food into their diet, stop into any Two Bostons and one of expert Team Members can help you!