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News and Information about Dogs, Cats, and Pet Products

I started Sherman on a fresh food diet when I was introduced to it at Two Bostons over a year ago. When we adopted Sherman almost 2 years ago, as a 6-week-old puppy, we lived in rural Kentucky, and unfortunately only had those big brand dog foods; I didn’t even know fresh food for dogs existed until moving back home to Chicago!

After bringing home a bunch of different options, I chose the 6 lb. bags of 12 patties because Sherman’s weight was just right and he’d be getting one patty a day (I have tried ALL the raw brands that Two Bostons carries, ALL BRANDS are A+ choices, and I chose based on convenience for my family’s lifestyle).

I think fresh is almost as easy to feed as Kibble. I originally would bring home a new bag of food and immediately put each patty individually into a Ziploc baggie to save space in a small freezer; but we’ve since purchased a deep freeze (for the single purpose of storing the dog’s food) and reusable Pyrex containers to essentially do the same thing. At night after feeding the second half of the patty, I take a new patty out and pop it in the fridge to defrost overnight. Wa-la! It’s ready by the morning. I’m pretty sure I have spent more time writing this paragraph than I spend per day on handling his food. When we cut the patty in half, we aren’t very scientific about it either. You and I don’t eat the exact same amount of cereal each morning, so if the fresh patty is not EXACTLY cut in half, I don’t sweat it too much.  

Things I’ve noticed since switching Sherman to a fresh food diet:

  • His coat. It is SO soft! Think of your favorite blanket to curl up on the couch with. Now think of an electric blanket. Now think of your dog. Every evening that’s what it’s like to curl up and watch TV with Sherman – he’s the full package!
  • Less poop. No, this is a good thing! Dog’s digestive tracts are only about a third of the length as human’s; meaning that they have less time to digest food. Since fresh food is biologically appropriate for a dog’s diet, they’re able to digest it and soak up all the nutrients much easier than other foods. You WANT to see less poop, it means they’re able to process and absorb all of their diet. Also, feeding a fresh food diet, their poops will be firm, allowing them to naturally express their anal glands. Sherman turns 2 in a month and he’s never had an anal gland problem!
  • Oral health. I’ve never brushed Sherman’s teeth. Ok, actually I “have” but it’s when he was a new puppy. I wanted him to get used to having the brush in his mouth, hoping that it would cause less problems in the future when we would have to brush them. Since feeding fresh and combining with frozen bones, I haven’t even had to think about it. There’s good bacteria that helps break down plaque and smelly breath in his food, and it’s left him with pearly white teeth. It’s like every time I feed him, he brushes his teeth!

Stop in any Two Bostons store, talk to a team member to find the right fresh food for your family’s lifestyle; take it from me, they have you covered!! You’ll immediately see a difference in your pup’s life.

 

 

During the month of January as a New Year’s resolution for you and your pet, we are challenging everyone (if not already) to incorporate Fresh (raw) Food into your pet’s diet.  You have probably heard at one point or another a Two Bostons team member talk about Fresh or Raw Diets for cats and dogs. Even just adding fresh food into your pet’s diet twice a week, has its benefits! Here are just a few:

It’s extremely cost-effective. 7ffd54b6ee423e8ac437ee1df4e590f1

Very often, allergies and ailments that our pets experience while on a commercial or kibble-based pet food diet tend to resolve (or greatly diminish) once a raw diet is in full effect. Why? Because raw diets are more consistent with the biological makeup of our canine and kitty friends, whose bodies need naturally occurring proteins, minerals, and enzymes to function optimally. Commercial pet food diets are loaded with fillers, artificial preservatives, and worrisome animal by-products that do not meet approval standards for human consumption.  High-carb kibble diets are very high in starches and sugars while being low in natural proteins and enzymes. This often contributes to lethargy, skin and coat issues, “doggie breath,” thyroid problems, even diabetes and pancreatitis, and over time these issues lead to more frequent vet visits. Do your dog and yourself a favor and add two or more fresh food meals a week to help improve your pet’s health.

It’s extremely safe and environmentally friendly.
186456-425x284-cat-eating-raw-food

Commercially-prepared fresh and raw foods (such as products from Stella & Chewy’s) have some of the best and most consistent safety records on the market today.  This is because many are produced in very controlled batches, and subject to stringent inspection practices that greatly minimize the incidence of things like Salmonella, E. Coli and Campylobacter. These raw foods are made in USDA-certified facilities with extreme concern for cleanliness, humane treatments, and environmental impact.

 

It’s extremely easy!

Easier than you probably think…simply go slowly, as you would with any new dietary change. Puppies can often transition over the course of just a few days, while geriatric or ailing pets may require a few weeks. Remember that one or two loose stools often signals nothing more than detoxification (a very beneficial thing), so just keep a close eye on your pet while you transition. It is also very easy to serve! You just put the fresh pieces into their bowl, let sit to defrost for a few minutes, and serve!rawfoodbowls

Stop into Two Bostons today and learn more about the benefits and our extensive selection of raw food products.  Our team members are always excited to offer firsthand insights that can help you customize a feeding plan for your specific pet – and get your furry friend well on their way to add fresh food into their diet, overall vitality and a lifetime of wellness!!

 

At Two Bostons, we all love October because Stella & Chewy’s is 20% off, all month long!!  Stella & Chewy’s is one of our customers favorite foods and treats!stellachewysdinner-2

Stella & Chewy’s Freeze Dried, a little bag of raw goodness!

1 – It is EXACTLY like the raw frozen Stella & Chewy’s Patty

AND

2 – It is EXACTLY NOT like the raw frozen Stella & Chewy’s Patty

How can that be?

It is the exact same patty (yes, the same!) but the process of making it freeze dried makes it so easy to handle!

  • You don’t need to remember to take it out ahead of time
  • It is easy for a sitter to feed when you go out of town
  • If you are traveling with your pet, you don’t need a cooler

Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried can be fed right out of the bag for a meal or a treat! They crumble nicely and you can add them as a topper over kibble to enhance the flavor or to add more protein.

They are very minimally processed and very healthy for your dog!  Stella & Chewy’s takes their food safety very seriously too, each bag has it printed on the back.  Their facility has a very powerful air purifier AND they take all of their equipment apart every night to wash and sterilize, so you can be sure you are giving your dog the highest quality raw food on the market.

You can get Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried food in several flavors that your dog will enjoy: Chewy’s Chicken, Stella’s Super Beef, Surf N Turf, Dandy Lamb, Duck Duck Goose, Absolutely Rabbit, Simply Venison and Phenomenal Pheasant.

Have more questions about Stella & Chewy’s, stop in and talk to our team members!  Until Oct. 31, 2016 you can get the Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried, Treats and Raw Food for 20% OFF!!

Have you had a chance to try out Stella & Chewy’s Meal Mixers? If not, here is why our dogs love them and why you should give them a try today…

You can mix this with your dogs dry kibble and it is great because it will:

  • Entice picky eaters at meal time
  • Add an extra boost of nutrition
  • Treat your dog with a tasty variety

Meal mixers make it easier than ever to give your dog the raw meat they crave; much like they once ate in the wild.  All it takes is one quick scoop!

  • Adds raw nutrition into any dietMeal-Mixers-Product-Shot-3-WithScooper
  • Packed with 95% nutrient-rich meat, organs and bones
  • Complemented by organic fruits and vegetables
  • Convenient for you with a taste your dog will love
  • Enhanced with probiotics and antioxidants

NEVER….

  • No added hormones or antibiotics
  • No grains or fillers
  • No gluten
  • No artificial preservatives or coloring

ALWAYS…

  • Made in the USA
  • FDA-Inspected
  • Grass-Fed
  • Cage-Free
  • Wild-Caught
  • Farm-Raised

stella-chewys-raw-dog-food-mixins-2To use as a Meal Mixer: Meal Mixers are an easy,  convenient way to add raw, nutrient-rich meat, wholesome fruits and vegetables, probiotics and antioxidants to any diet.  Simply fill the scoop; that is every bag; to the line (equal to 1/4 cup), mix and serve!!

To Use as a Complete and Balanced Dinner: These Meal Mixers are so good your dog will be begging for more!  To use as a complete meal, it is recommended to re-hydrate by adding 2 tablespoons of warm water per scoop. If feeding dry, make sure your dog drinks plenty of water at mealtime.

 

Stella & Chewy’s Meal Mixers come in these awesome flavors:

  • Savory Salmon & Cod
  • Tantalizing Turkey
  • Chewy’s Chicken
  • Stella’s Super Beef

Stella-Meal-Mixer-Flavors
And they all come in 3.5 oz., 9 oz. or 18 oz. bags…perfect for any dog size!

Still not ready to try them out, how about this…right now until June 30, 2016, you can buy any size meal mixer bag and get a 3.5 oz. bag of meal mixer for FREE, limit 2 per visit.  Stop in and pick up this deal today and if you have any other questions about Stella & Chewy’s Meal Mixers, our expert team members will answer your questions.

 

MelissaG_profile
Hello again – Melissa and Shenzi here! As you know by now, my little princess can be quite the picky eater, so we’re always trying new foods to get a feel for what she likes. One of her favorites that we carry right here at Two Bostons? Sojos Freeze Dried Dog Food!

Similar to Stella and Chewy’s or Grandma Lucy’s, Sojos dog food is freeze dried and made with grain-free ingredients. To prepare Sojos, you simply add water to the mix and allow it to sit for 15 minutes. This is just a bit longer than some of the other foods we have, but it’s well worth the wait! What I especially like about Sojos is that it has the consistency of a nice, thick, chunky stew — you can literally see all the ingredients you’re giving your pup, including the chunks of real meat. Shenzi isn’t a big fan of soupy foods either, which makes Sojos a fantastic choice. It’s also a great food topper, because you can sprinkle it over kibble to help picky dogs get more interested (now can you see why I gave this a try with Shenzi?).

Since we love Sojos so much, you can imagine how excited I was when Sojos introduced a new line of freeze-dried “Simply Meat” dog treats. The best part about them? They are, in fact, 100% MEAT! When you read lamb on the bag, that’s it – there are no other artificial ingredients or additives! I haven’t seen Shenzi go this crazy for a treat since Stella and Chewy’s introduced the Carnivore Crunch line. Plus, because these Sojos treats come in small little bite-sized pieces, I can feel good about giving her a few treats at a time without worrying about the extra weight gain.

Sojos_FoodOptions

For those of you who like to prepare fresh, cooked meat for your pup, Sojos also makes a fantastic veggie pre-mix to ensure that pups are getting the essential nutrients they need in addition to protein. Just mix the Sojos with liquid as normal, add the meat of your choice, and voila! You’ve got a pure, complete, and balanced meal that’s ready to serve in just minutes.

Finally, for all you cat moms and dads out there – Sojos makes a wonderful freeze dried cat food as well, so both canines and felines have access to fantastic, biologically-appropriate foods.

Next time you’re in one of our Two Bostons stores, ask any Team Member about awesome Sojos foods and treats. In addition to the “Simply” treats, Sojos also makes biscuits and teeny tiny bone-shaped cookie treats for pups as well. So try adding some Sojos to your pup’s or kitty’s diet today, and soon they’ll never want to be without it!

 

 

 

TracyP_Profile

As we celebrate our nation’s birth this month, our Team also decided to celebrate something that benefits YOU. It’s something that drives every single decision we make at Two Bostons, and it makes us very proud: We’re an independent, locally-owned business.

This means that whether you shop, work, or volunteer with us, YOU are an active contributor to local charities and Naperville civic life. YOU help create financial stability for our local community. YOU establish a training ground for generations of future entrepreneurs. YOU assist local shelters with supportive programs that help pets in need find loving forever homes.

 

IndependentRetailerMonth

 

We’re a proud member of indieboundnaperville.org, and we’re also a featured retailer on shopindieretail.com (check out the Thundershirt segment)! We recognize that as our customer, you place a huge level of trust in the experience and service capabilities of our Team Members. It’s a responsibility we never take lightly. After all, every time you make the conscious choice to shop at Two Bostons, YOU make sure that:

  1. Community nonprofits receive ongoing support. It’s a proven fact that local business owners donate more to community charities than non-locals. At Two Bostons, we’re dedicated supporters of The Naperville Area Humane Society, A.D.O.P.T. Pet Shelter, and numerous others.
  2. Environmental impact is reduced. Local organizations make more local purchases that require less transportation. Two Bostons currently has 59 product lines that are exclusively MADE IN THE U.S.A. – and within those lines, we offer many different products including treats (like Sojo’s, Cloud Star, Stella & Chewy’s, and Bravo); toys (like Planet Dog, West Paw Design, Ruff Dawg, and GoughNuts); and foods (like Fromm, Pure Vita, Zignature, Nutrisca, Merrick, and Raw Bistro). In addition, many of our supplements and ALL of our collars are U.S.A.-made.
  3. More value is created within Naperville. Studies show that a dollar spent at an independent retailer is normally re-spent 6 to 15 times before it leaves the community. When you spend that same dollar at a national chain store, 80% of the money leaves town immediately. So by choosing to shop at an independent retailer like Two Bostons, you create $5 – $14 in value right here in Naperville for every dollar you spend! This helps give Two Bostons the resources we need to keep expanding our U.S.A.-made product line, provide community volunteers, and develop programs that directly benefit local organizations.
  4. Two Bostons owners invest in Naperville. Local business owners live in our community. They’re less likely to leave and they’re more invested in the community’s future. Our Two Bostons owners, for example, are members of the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce. They’re active in the Downtown Naperville Alliance. They periodically attend Naperville City Council meetings. They’ve led Two Bostons to develop a comprehensive cause marketing program that allows local organizations to receive vital sustaining funds. Our owners inspire our entire Team to partner with these organizations and participate in numerous community outreach events every month.

On August 16th , for instance, we’re partnering with popular Naperville eatery Crosstown Pub & Grill to bring you Pints 4 Paws! Stop by either of our locations through August 15th, and in return for a $20 cash donation to NAHS you’ll get a glass that you can fill with $2 pints or $3 craft pints from 12 noon -4 p.m. on the day of the event. Plus, of course, your pup’s invited to join us on the patio! Visit our Facebook page or web site for more fun summer happenings that are making a difference!

Why do YOU shop with Two Bostons? We’re always interested to hear your feedback!

MelissaG_profile
As a life-long allergy sufferer, I know how frustrating it can be to love animals, yet experience horrible allergy symptoms in their presence. We talk a lot here at Two Bostons about what to do if your pet is having allergy problems. But what if you’re the one with unbearable animal-related allergies? Rather than give up all hope of having a canine or kitty companion – or even worse, wrestling with the difficult decision to give them away – take heart knowing that there ARE things you can do to give yourself some relief during allergy season and all year round!

What causes allergies? Pet allergies, contrary to popular belief, aren’t caused by long or fluffy fur. They’re actually caused by animal dander, which is a fancy word for the flakes of skin pets shed along with their hair every day. That’s why some people with allergies will break out in hives if a dog licks them, even without petting the pup. Dogs lick their skin; therefore, dander is present in their salvia as well! However, some pet breeds are still just naturally better suited to allergy sufferers, due to the fact that they shed less. After all, less hair on your furniture = less dander sticking to it, and getting on you throughout the day.

Through extensive field research (i.e., playing with lots of puppies!) I’ve found that there is no go-to “hypoallergenic” breed that every single allergy sufferer will be able to tolerate. For example, Shelties should drive my allergies nuts – yet I don’t usually have a reaction to them. But then there are Poodles — often promoted as a “hypoallergenic” breed — and they drive my allergies insane! In reality, it all depends on the individual animal. Some pets just release more dander than others, even across breeds. So do your own research: play and interact with lots of pets and breeds to see what you’re allergic to. This is the best way to find out which breeds can work best with your specific allergies.

Go Grain Free! – Here at Two Bostons, we always stress the importance of feeding many pets a grain-free diet, especially if you have a pet with lots of allergies. Study after study demonstrates that controlling grains – and often, reducing carbs — can greatly improve the quality of life for many dogs and cats. This is because our pups and kitties are natural carnivores with digestive systems that aren’t designed to process carbs and grains the same way we humans do. What I bet you didn’t know is that feeding your pet grain-free food can actually help your allergies as well!

PetAllergies_Diet

When pets have allergies, their skin gets flaky and itchy. And every time they itch, they release more dander into the air. As I said before, dander is the real culprit behind pet-related allergies. So if you have pet dander allergies and your pup or kitty is suffering, you’re probably suffering as well. However, grain-free diets can often help to alleviate your pet’s allergies tremendously — and if your kitty or canine has clear, healthy skin, there will be less dander (and less stress) on you!

At Two Bostons, we carry a broad range of grain-free, lower-carb, and limited-ingredient diet options that can be a great help to virtually any pet with allergies. Our Team Members have extensive firsthand experience using these products with their own pets; and they’re specially trained to help you select the ideal combination of food, treats, and supplements for your furry friend. Just a few of our Team favorites include:

  • Weruva food for cats, which is totally grain-free and full of high-moisture, high-quality meat.
  • Nutrisca food and treats, which are super low-glycemic and packed with healthy protein — making them a great choice for many older, allergy-prone, overweight, or diabetic pups.
  • Stella & Chewy’s Carnivore Crunch treats, which are made from raw, freeze-dried, USDA-inspected meats and totally free of grains, fillers, and additives.

So stop by with your pet soon for personalized suggestions. In the meantime, watch for a future post, where we’ll talk about shampoo and grooming options that can really help pets (and pet parents!) who struggle with allergies.

HeatherD_Profile

Planet Dog is one of my favorite toy brands that we carry at our Two Bostons stores — and lucky for us (and you!), we have their amazing new toy, the Orbee-Tuff Snoop.

One of my favorite things about U.S.A.-crafted Planet Dog toys is that they’re completely guaranteed … 100% of the time, every time! They’re made with a special Orbee-Tuff rubber that is designed to help a dog’s teeth rebound off while they’re chewing (instead of sinking in or puncturing the toy). With my border collie Ahsoka chomping all day on her Soccer Ball toy, I’m definitely thankful for this. So far, she loves the Soccer Ball, the Tennis Ball, and the Snoop from the Planet Dog line.

The Snoop is translucent, blue or orange, and squishy. Although it’s definitely tough like other Planet Dog toys, it’s specifically designed for puzzle play that can stimulate your pet’s natural intelligence and curiosity. It has a deep crevice in the center that can conceal a treat on the inside to create a fun challenge for your dog. I always recommend using Stella & Chewy’s Carnivore Crunch, because it’s so tasty and healthy — my girls (like most dogs) will do anything to get it!

 

PlanetDog_OrbeeTuffSnoop

Whichever treats you choose to use, pups will nudge the Snoop with their nose, their paws, their forehead, and/or their mouth trying to get those yummy morsels out (which can not only be smelled, after all, but seen right through the toy!). All this activity helps deliver the mental and physical stimulation every dog needs. For even more puzzle fun, take that Orbee-Tuff Tennis Ball or any other 2.5” Orbee-Tuff ball, stuff it into the concave center of the Snoop, and challenge your dog to remove it. Since the Snoop is intended for interactive play, it isn’t necessarily designed to stand up to those dedicated toy-destroyers out there – but it will still be a great way for them to release energy! Just be sure to use with appropriate supervision.

It’s easy to see why the Orbee-Tuff Snoop won the Gold Medal in “Product Innovations” at the 2013 HH Backer Total Pet Expo, which Two Bostons attended last year in Rosemont, IL. It’s fun, durable, cleverly designed, and easy to clean: just fill with hot water, shake vigorously, and rinse. Plus, with every purchase you make from Planet Dog, you help support canine service programs. 2% of every Planet Dog toy sale goes toward the company’s unique grant-giving and product donation programs. More than $850,000 in grants and product donations have already been shared with exemplary non-profits nationwide. That makes these toys an even better choice for your pups at home!

Remember that every Planet Dog and Orbee-Tuff toy — including the Snoop — is non-toxic, made in the U.S.A., and 100% guaranteed any time, every time! Just bring the toy back if it gets damaged or destroyed, and we’ll be happy to replace it. So stop by with your furry friend soon, and our Team Members will be happy to show you the Orbee-Tuff Snoop. You’ll never be puzzled for a playtime solution again!

 

MBB_Profile

Recently, as part of National Pet Dental Health Month, we posted a blog discussing the benefits of a raw diet when it comes to improving the oral health (not to mention the general health) of our dogs and cats. We received several great inquiries from readers who wanted to learn more. So in this blog, we’ll talk a bit more about transitioning to a raw diet — and also mention some of the brand NEW raw foods Two Bostons is adding to our already extensive selection.

First, if you’ve been thinking about transitioning your pet to a raw diet, there are a few things to keep in mind:

It’s extremely cost-effective.
Very often, allergies and ailments that our pets experience while on a commercial or kibble-based pet food diet tend to resolve (or greatly diminish) once a raw diet is in full effect. Why? Because raw diets are more consistent with the biological makeup of our canine and kitty friends, whose bodies need naturally occurring proteins, minerals, and enzymes to function optimally. Commercial pet food diets are loaded with fillers, artificial preservatives, and worrisome animal by-products that do not meet approval standards for human consumption. High-carb kibble diets are very heavy in starches and sugars while being low in natural proteins and enzymes. This often contributes to lethargy, skin and coat issues, “doggie breath,” thyroid problems, even diabetes and pancreatitis over time.

It’s extremely safe and environmentally friendly.
Commercially-prepared raw foods (such as products from Stella & Chewy’s) have some of the best and most consistent safety records on the market today. This is because many are produced in very controlled batches, and subject to stringent inspection practices that greatly minimize the incidence of things like Salmonella, E. coli and Campylobacter. These raw foods are made in USDA-certified facilities with extreme concern for cleanliness, humane treatment, and environmental impact.

It’s extremely easy.
Easier than you  probably think. Simply go slowly, as you would with any new dietary change. Puppies can often transition over the course of just a few days, while geriatric or ailing pets may require a few weeks. Just begin by replacing about 10% of your dog’s meals with raw food (you can fast your dog for a few hours prior to the first meal to ensure a strong appetite). Then, each day, replace another 10% of the original diet with the raw diet. If your pet rejects the food, or experiences stomach/gastric upset, simply slow the process down. Remember that one or two loose stools often signals nothing more than detoxification (a very beneficial thing), so just keep a close eye on your pet while the food transition is underway.

New Raw Foods

Two Bostons carries an extensive selection of raw foods, and our team members are specially trained to provide individualized dietary guidance. Ask about some of the great NEW foods we’re now carrying from these trusted brands!

 

STELLA & CHEWY’S DINNER MORSELS
Stella & Chewy’s is an all-time customer (and team member!) favorite that we’ve carried for quite some time. But in addition to all the terrific Stella & Chewy’s products you’ve come to know and love, we now carry frozen Dinner Morsels in a 4-pound bag. These super-convenient nuggets are tiny in size – so they’re ideal for pets of any age, even puppies and older dogs that might have trouble managing larger pieces. Better yet, they can be fed just like kibble if you like – simply pour them straight from the package into the bowl! Quick, easy, yummy, pure, super-nutritious.

RAW BISTRO
Two Bostons now carries Raw Bistro at our Springbrook store, and we can order Raw Bistro products for you at any of our stores. Based in Minnesota, in the heart of a thriving sustainable agriculture area, Raw Bistro developed its raw food and treat formulas by partnering with a holistic vet and veterinary nutrition specialist. The company has built its reputation on a strong commitment to ecologically sound production methods, local sourcing, family farm support, and humane farm animal treatment. Raw Bistro uses organic and grass-fed meats that are naturally high in the protein, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes domesticated pets need to thrive. Locally grown ingredients travel only short distances, so they spend less time in shipping and storage containers to retain more of their natural freshness and nutrition. This also gives them a much smaller carbon footprint.

STEVE’S REAL FOOD
A true raw pet food pioneer! Our Two Bostons Springbrook store now carries 9.7 pound boxes of Steve’s Real Food products, and any of our stores can order Steve’s raw products for you. Steve’s Real Food has been making top-quality raw pet food since 1998. In fact, Steve’s was one of the very first companies in the industry to distribute raw meat dog food nationwide. Steve’s products contain an optimal balance of meat and vegetables to make raw feeding not only easy and tasty, but extra-affordable too. To enhance this affordability, Steve’s relies on word-of-mouth for much of its advertising; so expensive promotional costs are held to a minimum. The convenient “tater tot”-sized nuggets don’t require overnight defrosting, cutting, or mixing. That means they’re as easy to feed as kibble – just pour and serve. Plus, Steve’s is working toward being one of the first pet food makers fully committed to going green. Food is packaged in bags made from soy- and water-based inks, and in a municipal composting environment the bags naturally compost within 10-40 days.

We also now carry another amazing Steve’s product: Raw Goat Milk Yogurt! Packed with probiotics and loaded with vitamins and minerals, this cool and creamy treat can be fed as a snack or used as a yummy food topper to add raw nutrition to any dry or canned meal. It’s a fantastic immune booster & digestive aid, with carrier enzymes that allow for better assimilation of vitamins and nutrients. Steve’s Raw Goat Milk Yogurt is made from free-range, antibiotic- and hormone-free goat milk; and also contains added chia for a powerful boost of Omega-3s, plus coconut flour for enriched protein and fiber content. Check out our recent blog on the numerous benefits of goat milk.

Stop by any Two Bostons store today if you’d like to learn more about our extensive selection of raw food products. Our team members are always happy to offer firsthand insights that can help you customize a feeding plan for your specific pet – and get your furry friend well on the way to better dental health, overall vitality, and a lifetime of wellness!

EricaH_Profile

Nail trimming is a dreaded task for many dog parents, but it doesn’t have to be.  It is very important to keep dogs’ nails short, as long nails can cause skeletal damage and an irregular gait. I am going to teach you how to make nail trimming at home a positive experience for you and your pup. Before you perform this task, you should have knowledge of the anatomy of a dog’s nail.

Dogs’ nails are composed of layers. Inside the hard outer layer is a layer of nerves and blood vessels called the quick. The quick starts at the nail bed and ends at the point where the dog’s nail starts to curve. If the quick is cut, the dog bleeds and feels pain. On a light-colored nail, the quick is very easy to see — it’s the pink part at the base of the nail. If your dog has dark or black nails, it would be beneficial to visit a dog with light nails so you can get a visual of how the quick looks. The nail should always be trimmed down no closer than 2 mm away from the quick.

NailTrimming_Technique2

Before trimming your dog’s nails, take extra care to identify the quick —
for both comfort and safety, you ALWAYS want to avoid cutting
this part of the nail !

If you don’t already have a tool at home for nail trimming, you will have to pick a style that best suits you and your dog. Some people use clippers, while others prefer grinders.  Neither is better than the other. You should use the tool that you are most comfortable with.

Clippers come in two types: guillotine or scissor. The guillotine style clipper has a hole that the dog’s nail goes through, and a blade that moves up to cut the nail when you squeeze the handle. The scissor style works just like a pair of scissors. You should hold both styles in your hand to find out what feels most comfortable. Two Bostons carries both of these styles, made by GoGo. Grinders are another option but they can be noisy, so it may be best to start using this tool with a puppy or a dog that is not sensitive to noise. Whichever tool you use, always be sure to have plenty of yummy treats on hand to make the experience as positive as possible.  I like to use a very tasty all-meat treat such as Stella and Chewys Carnivore Crunch. You will also need a jar of styptic powder (made to stop bleeding) and cotton balls – just in case you accidentally cut the quick.

NailTrimming_Tools

To trim pup nails painlessly and professionally, it’s important to have all the right tools
readily at hand.

 

As soon as you bring home a new puppy or dog, you should get him used to having his paws touched. Hold his paw in your hand and touch his nails for a couple of seconds; then release and reward with a treat. Practice this daily while it is still new to the dog.   With new puppies, I put the clipping tool on the floor with treats on and near it, and have the puppy take the treats right off of the tool. You can also use this technique with a newly adopted dog.

I also like to teach a dog to touch the tool with his nose. As soon as he touches, I reward with a treat. This type of positive training teaches the dog that the tool is good. These exercises are especially important when using a grinder due to the noise. One additional “positive association” exercise you can do if you are using a grinder is to turn the grinder on for a couple of seconds, then give your dog a treat. These exercises should be performed several times before you ever touch the tool to the dog’s nails.

In Part 2 of this blog post, I’ll do exactly that: discuss the proper technique for giving your pup a pain-free, professional nail trimming. So check back later this week!