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News and Information about Dogs, Cats, and Pet Products

Hey!  It’s Jen from the Two Bostons, Burr Ridge store…here to tell you about my favorite product right now!

It’s about that time of year again when most of our dogs are blowing their coats.  Whether they are a long coated dog or short coated dog, here is hair EVERYWHERE this time of year.

My absolute favorite product to use to combat this problem is the FURminator shampoo and conditioner.  It contains omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and papaya leaf extract that will help loosen and release the undercoat during a bath!  You will literally see all of the dead coat fall off your dog as you rinse them off.FURminator-Shampoo-Conditioner
cleandogYou want to leave the shampoo and conditioner on for 2-5 minutes each to make sure you get the best results.  If you have a ZoomGroom Brush by Kong, you can use it to lather the shampoo and conditioner in the dog’s coat during the bath (your hand work just fine too, if you don’t have a zoom groom).

You will have a NEW dog when you’re finished, and your dog will feel ten pounds lighter!!  You won’t have to sweep your floor as much, and your dog will be so much more comfortable with all that dead coat off its body.

Another amazing tool to follow up with after the bath, is the FURminator brush.  To use the brush, you just follow the direction of the coat and watch the hair come off!  Only brush between 10-15 times in the same spot so you don’t irritate your dog’s skin.  If you are uncomfortable with the FURminator brush, continue using the Zoom Groom brush and you will still get a lot of extra hair off.

kong_zoom_groomThe ZoomGroom Brush by Kong, that I mentioned early is the best grooming and shampooing brush available.  It removes loose hair like a magnet, and it stimulates capillaries and natural oil production for healthy skin and a healthy coat.  Not only does it remove hair while shampooing, it will give your pup a massage while you brush.  It is made in the USA, comes in two colors and two sizes.

We carry all of the products mentioned at all of the Two Bostons’ stores.  Come and visit us to see the magic for yourself, then just sit back and enjoy your summer!

 

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Do your pets have healthy feet?   A healthy foot means that your pet is walking on the pads of their feet and not on their toes/nails.

When dog’s nails are too long, it causes unnecessary stress on their joints, which can cause pain, and eventually arthritis.  When the pad hair is allowed to become too long, it can collect debris from outside, and track it into your house.  During the winter months, snow and ice can become impacted in long pad hair, which can cause pain in your pet’s feet. Excessively long nails or pad hair can be dangerous for your pet as it can cause stress on the joints, causing them pain or injury in other parts of their body, and pad hair that is too long can cause pets to slip on smooth surfaces, which can lead to falls and other possible injuries.

Nails and pads should be trimmed every 1-4 weeks, keeping in mind that during the Summer months, humidity causes the hair and nails to grow faster.  There are two ways of trimming the nails: 1. Clipping – this is very similar to how we clip our own nails.  2. Filing – it allows you to get the nails slightly shorter and also you to round the edges of the nails so they are not as sharp.

It is possible in both instances to “quick” the nail – the vein inside your pets nail. Quicking is referring to if you cut a nail too short, accidentally cutting into the vein or quick in the nail, causing the nail to bleed.  To stop the bleeding, use a styptic powder, or Two Bostons sells a fast acting gel to stop the bleeding called Super Clot by Synergy Labs.  Over time, with regular nail trimming you can get the vein to recede so you go shorter in length on the nails.

Look for their next Guest Blog about the signs of arthritis in dogs…

Nail Clipping/Filing, and Pad Trims are available as a Walk-In Service at The UpScale Tail during normal business hours.  Monday-Friday 7:30 am – 5:00 pm and Saturdays 8:00 am – 3:00 pm.  Feel free to call us if you have any questions at (630) 632-8245, or stop in and visit us at 1419 Plainfield Naperville Rd., Naperville 60565.  OR Visit our website at www.theupscaletail.com

 

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Hello again! Ever since warmer weather got underway a few months ago, dog owners have been noticing the return of an all-too-familiar problem: SHEDDING! Even the shortest coats can become a nuisance; and unless you just love to accessorize your outfits with clumps of pet fur, owners aren’t exactly fond of all this extra hair lying around. In the past, we’ve talked about the Furminator and its awesome ability to reduce shedding by eliminating the undercoat of loose fur. Today, Shenzi and I are here to share another fantastic brush alternative that really gets rid of all that loose hair — the Zoom Groom by Kong!

The Zoom Groom is essentially a rounded rubber brush that’s unique because it “sucks” the loose fur off your pup’s coat like a magnet. The fur sticks to the rubber — which makes the brush extremely easy to clean. Plus, because it’s made of pliable material, it’s also extra-gentle on sensitive pet skin and won’t scratch or irritate your pet. Zoom Groom comes in a number of snazzy colors, and it’s perfect for cats too. Cute little dog and cat designs are even featured right on the brush!

 

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Shenzi definitely felt pampered — and the ZoomGroom definitely felt full of loose fur — after our “spa day” grooming session.

 

Shenzi is a German Pointer/Italian Greyhound mix (and probably a few other things besides!), so she has very short hair that doesn’t need much more than a bath every few weeks to stay looking fresh and groomed. She sheds a fair bit, but I was curious to see just how much loose hair was really hanging on her coat. After using the Zoom Groom, I was amazed at how much actually came off! I got at least a handful of fur off my mid-sized, 45 pound dog!

Zoom Groom was super-easy to use, and the hair collected in a neat little pile near Shenzi’s tail which made cleanup a breeze. Best of all, my girl absolutely LOVES being groomed with this tool! She got down and stretched out to make it easier for me, which shows just how relaxed she felt with a soft rubber brush as opposed to hard wire bristles that could scratch up her skin and make her uncomfortable. After our brushing session, Shenzi’s shedding was noticeably reduced for about two weeks with just a few quick touch-ups in between.

So if you’re looking for a gentle yet super-effective brush option that is perfect for dogs with sensitive skin, grooming anxiety, or shorter coats, I’d definitely recommend coming in to try out the Zoom Groom today. Your canine or feline friend will feel like they’re getting a soothing massage, and you (along with your favorite black pants) are sure to notice the difference right away!

 

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It’s official, because it’s actually on the calendar – Spring arrives this week!  After the loooooong, snowy, frigid winter we’ve endured, just the idea of sunnier days and balmier temps provides a much-needed mental break. If your family’s like mine, nicer springtime weather means longer walks, new trail discoveries, and more trips to the dog park. Yet it can also mean grimy paws and muddy underbellies that threaten to track dust and dirt all over the carpet and furniture. We all know that bathing our pets too frequently can be messy, time-consuming, and extremely harsh on their skin and coats. So does this mean we’re stuck staying indoors after all?

Not a chance! That’s because the smart folks over at Earthbath have developed Earthbath Grooming Wipes. These large, thick, pre-moistened wipes – manufactured in the U.S.A. with only the safest, most natural botanical ingredients – are great to use between baths as a touch-up grooming aid. We tote them along in a backpack, where they’re super-handy for cleaning dirty paws, legs, ears, snouts, undercoats, and um … bottom areas, too. They’re designed to help remove the animal dander, eye discharge, enthusiastic drool, clinging plant matter, mud stains, and/or general fuzz that just seem to accumulate whenever your pup charges through an open field after being snowbound all winter. They’re also ideal for wiping down paws after every walk. This helps reduce the number of outside allergens that get tracked through the house.

Besides all-natural cleansers and conditioners, Earthbath Grooming Wipes also contain shine-enhancing extracts plus healing aloe vera and moisturizing vitamin E (as an added bonus: notice how soft they make your fingers and hands feel after wiping off your pet!). They’re free of animal by-products, lanolin, and skin-drying alcohol; they won’t remove spot-on flea and tick control products that have been applied per manufacturer’s directions; and they’re safe for daily use on animals over 6 weeks old.

 

Earthbath Wipes

Don’t let springtime dirt, dust, and allergens rain on your pet’s parade! Earthbath Grooming Wipes are the safe, gentle, all-natural way to keep your furry friend’s skin and coat in soft, shiny, pristine condition all season long.

 

Here’s another benefit I especially like: Earthbath Grooming Wipes can be a real life-saver when you own a cat and have friends who are allergic. Our Ben was a total neat freak who bathed himself whenever he wasn’t eating, staring at birds, visiting his litter box, or napping. These wipes helped to cut way down on the amount of dander and cat saliva on his fur, so our pet-loving neighbors could give him some kitty TLC. The natural ingredients also provided great peace of mind, because we didn’t have to worry about Ben ingesting harsh toxins during one of his numerous daily “spa breaks.”

Earthbath Grooming Wipes come in several varieties:

  • Green Tea – scented with fresh-smelling green tea leaf extract, a natural antioxidant
  • Hypo-Allergenic – totally fragrance-free and allergen-free, with a moisturizing blend of all-natural conditioners. Great for pets with sensitive skin or skin allergies. Also great for pet parents who are sensitive to perfumes.
  • Mango Tango – beach-yummy tropical scent, with conditioning Hawaiian awapuhi extract
  • Especially for Puppies –allergen-free with a blend of all-natural conditioners, plus a sweet wild cherry fragrance
  • Regular and Hypo-Allergenic for Cats — uniquely formulated to give our kitty friends safe, special pampering

Earthbath Grooming Wipes come in a convenient travel size as well, and the company also makes extremely effective Ear Wipes and Eye Wipes. These are a huge help when it comes to keeping your pet’s eyes and ears clean, clear, and comfy no matter what the season. There’s also a full line of great-smelling, natural Earthbath shampoos, spritzes, and grooming foams that can keep your pet’s skin and coat in prize-worthy shape. Stop by any Two Bostons store with your furry friend, and ask us to suggest some of our favorites!

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In my last post, we talked about the anatomy of a dog’s nail and ways to help introduce your pup to effective nail trimming tools like GoGo nail trimmers, clippers and grinders. Establishing positive association is a very important first step in the process! So in this post, we’ll now take a look at the actual nail trimming process.

Once you’re actually ready to trim your dog’s nails, be sure you have all of your supplies readily at hand and are in a comfortable place with good lighting. Many people find it easiest to have the dog lay on his side on the floor. If using a clipper, hold it in your dominant hand; then hold the dog’s paw firmly in your other hand, with your thumb on the foot pad and your fingers on the top of the foot near the nail bed. Place the trimmer in an area away from the quick (again, no closer than 2mm), and cut with one swift motion. If your dog has dark nails, it is best to start at the very tip and cut 2 mm at a time as you gradually get closer to the quick. When you start seeing a gray colored oval, you are nearing the quick and should STOP cutting.  The quick actually starts to recede the more often you trim the nails, making future trimmings easier. You may also use a nail file to smooth the edges.

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Find the position that’s most comfortable for you and your dog, then make sure you’re in a well-lit area with all your tools readily at hand.

If you are using a grinder, you will also hold it in your dominant hand and the dog’s paw in the other (as with a clipper). Touch the grinder to the dog’s nails for a couple of seconds, remove it for a second, and then repeat. Continue this technique until you start to see the gray colored oval. Grinding tends to take a little bit longer, but produces a very nice, smooth, short nail.

Be very patient, take your time, and offer lots of treats. Never trim nails in a hurry! Every dog reacts to nail trimming differently. One of my pups gets anxious, so I have to trim a nail, give a treat, then relax for a couple seconds before going on to the next nail.  Another of my dogs is very easygoing and not too bothered by the task — so I do an entire foot, and then reward with a treat before going on to the next. It is important to read your dog’s body language. If he is getting stressed, give him a couple breaks. Don’t try to do all 4 paws at one time.

Happy trimming!

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Always be sure to take your time, and realize that every dog reacts differently to nail trimming. Your perfectly-pedicured pup will appreciate your care and patience!

 

p.s.  ~ About cutting the quick: I have been trimming nails for 12 years, and have yet to cut the quick even on black nails. Yet even with this track record, I still have styptic powder within close reach each time I trim. It is very, very important to proceed gradually and carefully for the well-being of your pet. But if you do accidentally cut the quick, use a cotton ball to wipe the blood off the nail. Take a generous pinch of powder from the container and pack it all around the nail to stop the bleeding.