dog harness
Jan 22 2018

How to Select a Harness

How to Select a Harness

In a perfect world, car accidents would never happen. Unfortunately as drivers, we know all too well that they do. Driver distraction is a common focus of passenger safety experts and university studies. While your cell phone can contribute to driver distraction, so can your pet. Center for Pet Safety applauds the use of pet restraints during travel. Preventing the accident in the first place is absolutely the best option. But because accidents happen, we also want you to have the information you need to choose that product wisely.

Distraction Prevention vs. Crash Protection

Preventing many accidents starts with distraction prevention. Placing your phone in the back seat of the vehicle, or placing it in airplane mode is recommended by many experts. But what about the family pet? Center for Pet Safety actively supports distraction prevention efforts – we all know that prevention is the first line of defense. As a pet owner, you need to evaluate what you are wanting from a product prior to purchase.

Rule #1 – Pets ALWAYS go in the back seat.

A Distraction Prevention Tool Can Help Prevent an Accident

Does using a safety harness prevent distraction? Yes, and no. Yes, it may prevent distraction, but you and your pet have some training to do. If you do not acclimate your pet to the product or select the appropriate design of distraction prevention harness, it can actually contribute to distraction.

Design Matters

We know from our efforts that long extension tethers and zipline-style products increase the freedom of the dog in the backseat. While some pet owners think this is a good idea, Center for Pet Safety has proven that extension products actually increase the risk of distraction and injury to both you and your pet. Dogs that are not properly restrained can slip or fall into the passenger leg compartment and become a distraction. It’s the primary reason why CPS counsels pet owners to avoid harnesses with extension tethers and zipline-style connections. Using a harness product that does not have a tether is our recommended selection to prevent driver distraction.  Read our Extension Tether Advisory.


We cannot stress this enough – you MUST acclimate your pet to the safety device to ensure a positive user experience. This may take some time and depends on the pet.

Center for Pet Safety recommends using the device on several short trips and increasing the duration of those trips by 5 minutes every time. Use a positive, reassuring, happy voice during your trip and lots of pets and praise when you are done with your training trip. If your dog responds to treats, give them only at the end of the training trip (to avoid car sickness).

But What About Crash Protection?

Many manufacturers make claims of “crash testing” or “crash protection.” Center for Pet Safety has tested the majority of pet travel harnesses on the market and we know that for many brands, these claims cannot be substantiated. Yes, the manufacturer may have conducted crash testing, but their marketing may not be fully truthful. We have also found that the quality control with some brands is faulty.

What Do I Need to Know?

First, you need to know that just because a product claims crash testing – doesn’t mean it PASSED crash testing. In many cases, the grade of Pass is subjective and the manufacturer wants you to think they have completed ample due diligence.

Second, Turn a discerning eye – those positive reviews you read about the product may be bought and paid for by the manufacturer. “Give us a positive review and receive 25% off your next purchase!” “We’ll give you a positive review in exchange for a product sample!” It happens every day. Be a wise consumer.

Third, in the case of an accident a crash protection product will help protect you and your family and give your pet the best possible chance of survival. A distraction prevention tool, may not offer that level of protection. Choose Wisely.

Center for Pet Safety is the ONLY independent non-profit research and consumer advocacy organization working for you and your pets to cut through the marketing hype to get you the facts, author independent test protocols and ratings guidelines and ensure you have a fair and impartial partner in assessing pet product safety.

Original article is found on here:  Click Here 

Jan 16 2018

Why is Training so Important For Our Furry Friends?

Dog Training

There are very many reasons to love a dog. The dog is appreciative, patient with its owners, loyal and protective. Because of these, even the sternest of dog owner’s fall into the trap of pampering the dog sometimes unmindful of the effect of the temporary indulgence. Who would not? It is so difficult to refuse a dog giving you dog eyes when you are sitting at your table begging for man food. The charm though is easily lost once there are guests. It feels very nice to be welcomed by a dog with a furiously waging tail, very excited at your coming home, jumping at you, or bolting out the door to meet you. It is embarrassing though when the dog does the same when there are other people around.

On occasions such as these, the owner will attempt at stopping the dog from continuing, but when the dog is not trained, all the dog hears from its owners is just another bark, an important bark maybe but incomprehensible.

It is also a natural instinct among us to not create “fences” among those we love but if the dog is allowed full run off the house, sooner, even those characteristics in a dog that charmed us will be an irritant. Obviously and for very practical reasons, the dog needs obedience training. Little coaching like sit, heel, stop, stay, and come, goes a long way in teaching your dog manners that are very useful in situations when you would want to communicate with the dog and be understood. The dog is also likely to respect the owner more if the owner is consistent and firm with what he wants the dog to do.

Setting limits on what the dog can and cannot do is of the dog’s nature. In fact, dogs enjoy hierarchy; it wants to know who the boss is. It is its tendency that is natural to dogs. Dogs trained in obedience are not only much more enjoyable as companions; dogs also are less likely to suffer and are loved more when it knows its limits.

While mans love affair with dogs is many centuries old, dogs originally were predators in the wild. Even though all these years these instincts are not totally shed. In the wild, dogs lived in packs. As such, there has always been an established hierarchy among them that were useful if they were to survive, and so dogs instinctively obey rules. If rules are not provided and the dog is allowed to do as it wants, it starts thinking that it is the alpha male and will become dominant because contrary to our beliefs, it does not see people as people but as members of the pack where he is a part or where he should lead.

Loyalty, sociability, protectiveness, gentleness with those that the dog is familiar with, fierceness to those it does not know and sometimes meanness when there is a perceived violation of territories are real to the dog that endears him to us but these traits are natural instincts practiced within the pack which by extension is given to humans.

Dog training then is very important if these traits are to be sharpened to our benefit.

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Check out this article: Forgetting this Essential Could Mean a More Painful Life for Your Dog

Jan 15 2018

Adopting a Companion Dog

Companion Dogs

Many dog lovers will argue that any dog is a good companion. Indeed dogs by their friendly nature are good companion dogs. In the strict sense though and for differentiation, dogs that do not work and do not particularly excel at any task other than companionship is a companion dog. When the decision for adopting a dog is to have a companion, the choices will be limited generally to smaller dog breeds that are expected to serve no particular task other than as a pet and as a comforter.

This tradition of having small dogs for decoration dates back thousands of years to Chinese nobility where the Pug and the Pekingese were favorites. In Europe, lap dogs are also popular with royalties and the wealthy throughout history and are still used as gifts today. In fact, because of their generally small breed, companion dogs love to sit on their owner’s lap that earned them the term of lap dogs aside from their comforting warmth.

Several companion dogs, for example, the Maltese, terriers, and spaniels were breed with the intention of serving good company for refined ladies and gentlemen during the 19th century. Children and dogs though have this natural affinity to each other that popularity of companion dog breeds increased. In the 20th century, middle and lower classes began having companion dogs to chum up with their children. In fact, the parameter by which a good dog breed is measured on is in the dogs being a good family pet. By that, it means that the dog is friendly to both man and other smaller animals and gentle.

Companion dogs have a life expectancy of up to 16 years. They weigh, depending on the breed, from 4 to 16 pounds and are prone to ailments that are related to their size. Before adopting a dog for a companionship, it would be well to do a little research regarding health, ailments, and other breed specific issues on health.

Companion dogs being generally small dogs are energetic and rambunctious. While they are not ideal around children because they move very fast, they are good company to older people who could use extra cheer around the house. One of the downside to having a companion dog is that because of their size, they are vulnerable to larger animals. When you are located in areas where winters could be very cold, you would want to consider companion dog breeds that are fluffy or are longhaired.

The benefits far outweigh the risk though as these dogs are content to follow wherever their owners go, are very easy going, and are content to sit with their owners for long periods of time. They are excellent pets for people living in small apartments, they also cost less to maintain and are excellent for people that are less active since the running around the house is exercise enough for them.

Some of the most popular companion breed dogs are the Chihuahua, Pomeranian, Yorkshire Terriers, Pugs, Dachshunds, and Shih-Tzus.

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Check out this article: Tenney Mudge’s personal experience that triggered the invention of the Keepsafe Collar

Jan 15 2018

The Doghouse Type

Adopting A Dog and Building A Doghouse

Once decided on adopting a dog, the next step to take is the type of doghouse that you will need. The doghouse depends on the dog breed that you want. Dogs grow very fast and allowances must be taken to ensure that the doghouse will shelter the dog when it is full-grown.

The Doghouse Type

This is a fine time to practice creativity. There are as many doghouse styles as there are houses for people. For people that want to exercise fun and creativity, doghouse styles could be constructed to look like a miniature single room white house complete with a blue room or just have the blue room instead. It could even look like the basic structure of your house with the inside looking like your room. It could be constructed to look like a chalet, a lean-to, a box or a cage. There are a lot of choices. The only must is that the doghouse will fit the dog enough to have him move comfortably and that the roof will not be so hot during summer months. Another very important item is a door. In areas where there are very cold seasons, a door should be opted instead of the usual open hole.

Determining the Size

Determining doghouse sizes are personal choices. You could build the doghouse as big as you want. However, you cannot build a doghouse smaller than this:
Height: to determine a comfortable height that is also enough to ensure good air circulation, add 9 inches to the height of a fully-grown dog of the same breed.
Length: to determine the shortest length of a doghouse, add one and one-half foot from the length of the dog starting from the tip of the nose to its rump.
Width: to decide the narrowest width of the doghouse that would provide enough space for the dog to move around, add one foot to the length of the dog, this is the narrowest space for your width.

Choosing the Location

The ideal area to be chosen as the location for building the dog house is a level ground that is free from water run-off. Clear the site where the doghouse will be built down to the short grass. Pack the ground tightly before building. In areas where there are extreme changes in weather, you may need to insulate the doghouse or consider air conditioning. This is more important when you have an outdoor dog breed. There are many choices for roofing but often, a wooden roof is sufficiently cool. For flooring, you may want vinyl or lumber as these are easily cleaned.

For health reasons, the doghouse is usually constructed a few inches from the ground. This also wards off insects and other small animals from entering aside from ensuring that the place remains dry. Then you begin building.

When pressed for time and you would prefer doghouse kits, there are so many varieties that are available that are pre-fabricated and are available at your local pet shops.

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Oct 26 2017

Tenney Mudge’s personal experience that triggered the invention of the Keepsafe Collar

I remember that night in the kitchen when I stroked Chinook’s thick white fluffy neck and his cosmic eyes looked back up at me.  Chinook was clown-like.  He was black and white with polka dot spots.  He was strong but soft, fluffy but shaggy and from his one blue eye — fell 3 black spots that looked like tears.

As my hands passed over his leather buckle collar I wondered, as I often had, how safe it was to have something designed not to break around his big, beautiful neck. The next day Chinook was dead – killed by the collar I put on him to keep him safe.  His collar had become snagged and as he struggled to get free, it twisted and strangled him. I wasn’t there to even try and save him.  He couldn’t break the collar and he couldn’t slip out of the twisted collar.

What may sound like a freak accident is not.  Collar accidents occur far more frequently than is realized by caring, but unsuspecting, dog owners. Collars get snagged most commonly in the backyard or inside the home in our dogs’ safe environment.  The number one most common accident is when two dogs become entangled while they are neck biting in play; this is also the most fatal accident.

Multiple dog households with active players are in particular danger. It happens so fast.  One moment your dog is happy, playing and loving life and the next moment the life is being strangled from him. Collar strangulation accidents leave deep scars for all of those involved. On average, we receive reports of one to two collar accidents every week – and that is from dog owners who take the time to write or call.  We know the number is actually higher.

One of the saddest things shared on a regular basis from grieving dog owners is “if only I had known this could happen” or “why didn’t my veterinarian or trainer tell me this could happen?”

The KeepSafe® Collar, invented through years of research following Chinook’s death, is the only safety collar specifically designed to release for safety and free your dog from danger. This is so important because the vast majority of collar accidents involve an almost immediate twisting of the collar, preventing a dog from slipping out of his collar.

The KeepSafe Collar is the only collar you can have on your dog when you walk out the door that will release and protect your dog when you are not there should he get into trouble with his collar.

In today’s world, your dog may have a wardrobe of high-quality, solution-oriented products from the Gentle Leader or the Easy Walk Harness for walking; it would be wise to have the KeepSafe Collar with identification for his daily wear collar too.

We all know the importance of identification and microchip information for your dog.  The KeepSafe Collar with identification is the one tried and true “peace of mind” collar that your dog can wear unsupervised and still be protected.  In addition, the KeepSafe Collar can be used securely with a leash by overriding the breakaway buckle with a leash snap.

Being involved in collar safety and breakaway technology for over 10 years, I have developed a personal theory based on statistics – if six people are randomly chatting about dogs – at least one of them will have a close call with a collar accident or know someone who has. Have you had an experience concerning the safety of your dog’s collar?

We invite you to try the six-person theory and let us know the results. A dog’s neck is one of the most vulnerable parts of their body.  When you embrace your dog with loving arms, please consider what else you put around his neck.


Originally a New Yorker, Tenney is a Cornell grad, a former Animal Control Officer in New York, worked in Washington, DC in animal welfare and served as a Peace Corps volunteer.  Rural Virginia has been home to Tenney for over 20 years where she keeps a large animal family safe and happy and enjoys looking for bear tracks in the Blue Ridge.

By Tenney Mudge, inventor of the Keepsafe Collar

Article found on The PetSafe website: 

Oct 24 2017

How Dogs Help Seniors Thrive

There’s no magic recipe to ensure that we live longer, but one thing is certain: dogs can help.

There is nothing quite like playing fetch with a bouncing bundle of energy or cuddling up on the couch with your dog to enjoy a night of television. For years, many people have believed that animals offer emotional relief and assist the healing process. Now research and studies are backing that up.

Therapy and service pets have become increasingly common over the last few decades, helping people with hearing loss, limited mobility, and vision loss, too. They’re also helpful for those with mental illnesses, autism, and more. For heart attack patients, a dog can increase their life expectancy. Just the act of petting an animal can boost the mood, lower blood pressure, decrease loneliness, and reduce the risk of heart attack.

Whether a senior takes a dog for a companion, or for service, there are plenty of incredible benefits with a dog as your companion.

Service Animal

There are a number of tasks that the ADA has deemed that a service animal can be beneficial for, for both psychological and physical disabilities. The pets have to be given professional training and offer specific support services.
For a senior with mobility challenges, a dog can help retrieve items, respond to an emergency situation, and even manage the medication schedule.

Thousands of people with vision or hearing impairments rely on the assistance of a service dog to cross the street, navigate, and to alert the handler to emergencies or danger. They also alert them when someone is at the door, of it the phone is ringing.


Retirement is meant to be an epic time for seniors, but unfortunately, it often results in isolation and a feeling of restlessness. While some loved ones have passed on, often others are out of state or unable to visit often because they’re caught up in their own lives. A dog offers companionship, which staves off feelings of loneliness and isolation. They don’t care about the person’s abilities or age, they’re just interested in the affection and unconditional love that they share with their owner.

For seniors who live on their one, a dog offers companionship and a feeling of safety, too.

Exercise Buddy

This is a big one, dogs offer their humans a sense of purpose. Seniors have someone that needs to be looked after, fed, and exercised on a daily basis. This is especially helpful for seniors who are struggling with grief, life changes, or depression.

Dogs force a routine, from the early morning walk, breakfast, and beyond. They force owners out of the home and out for exercise. In fact, dog owners over 65 tend to exercise 22 minutes a day extra versus their non-dog owning counterparts.

You’re not just walking your dog; your dog is walking you. A trip to the park could lead to a new friendship.

Dogs provide a sense of nurturing, commitment, responsibility, and in turn, seniors have a connection, they stay active, and maintain a schedule.

It doesn’t have to hurt your wallet either, there are plenty of rescue centers and animal charities that would be happy to help you rehome the dog of your dreams. The size of the dog shouldn’t matter too much, though, there are dogs that require more activity than others. You may want to consider that before settling on a dog, for instance, Dalmatians are highly strung thus need a lot of activity, while Greyhounds enjoy relaxing on the couch so don’t require as much exercise.

You may also want to consider the weather in your area before choosing a specific dog.



Oct 23 2017

PetSafe Launches Third-Annual Collar Safety Awareness Campaign

To help educate the public about the risks associated with traditional collars, PetSafe, a brand of Knoxville, Tenn.-based Radio Systems Corp., launched Collar Safety Awareness Week in 2015. This year it will be observed October 15-21, as part of National Animal Safety and Protection Month. 

“The safety of pets is of the utmost importance to all of us here at PetSafe,” said Nicole Backus, product manager toys and behavior at Radio Systems Corp. “Our goal is to educate the public about how easily collar strangulation can happen with traditional collars, so we can help reduce the occurrence of these tragic accidents. The most common cause of incidence is when multiple dogs are playing together and one dog gets caught on another one’s collar. However, these accidents can also be caused by a dog getting a collar caught on furniture, crates, fences, heating and cooling vents, and bushes, trees and shrubs.”

In addition to educating pet owners about collar safety, PetSafe offers the KeepSafe Break-Away Collar, a collar that prevents strangulation. The collar was invented by Tenney Mudge after she lost her dog, Chinook, to a collar strangulation accident. The collar was designed with a patented break-away safety buckle that releases when pressure is applied. If a dog’s collar gets stuck and they start to struggle to break free, the buckle will release and the collar will fall off the dog’s neck without causing any harm. For supervised walks with a dog, the leash clip can be hooked around the 2 D-rings to prevent the buckle from breaking away.

In 2017, PetSafe released the KeepSafe Break-Away Collar in a new pattern.

Original post found in Pet Product News Website: Click Here

Oct 02 2017

Pet Photography 101: The Rules

Pro-tips for your Pet Photography

I have been a photographer for a hundred years, pet photography included. Here are my pro-tips:

First and foremost, I have to correct the mistake that I always see in pet photography; Don’t shoot from your standing height! Get down low, belly on the floor, eyeball-to-eyeball with Fido.

Now that we are at the proper height, next is my most important tip; The use of what I call my dog wrangler. Your wrangler needs to know exactly what you need and be right there on the floor, behind your back – Not off to the side. This will keep the dog’s eyes toward the camera. Your wrangler will then help by making strange noises to get the dog’s attention. Squeaks, whistles, snaps – Whatever, will get the subject to perk up their ears and cock his head, for that wonderful expression that we all love. Because the dog will almost always leave the spot where you want them to sit and run to you, your wrangler must also possess incredible patience and perseverance. Your assistant’s job will be to tirelessly catch him and return him to where you need him to be. Squeaky toys must be hidden in the hand and used very sparingly. Most noisemakers will work only once, two times tops. Dogs catch on fast; you are not going to fool them! Having worn it out after two squeaks, change to something completely different – Your choice. But make sure your wrangler keeps the toy hidden at all times – If you show the dog a toy, he’ll want it, and all is lost.

Last but not least, pay close attention to the pet’s eyes – This is where the magic happens. The eyes are the soul of the picture.

Good Luck and good shooting.


Sep 26 2017

Forgetting This Essential Could Mean a More Painful Life For Your Dog

I love my dogs. They’re family.

People who don’t have dogs would ask, “Don’t you mean ‘like’ family?” But you know what I mean. Family.

And like family members, we want our pups to be healthy and happy, so when one of my dogs began scratching uncontrollably and biting on its legs, I got worried. So just like a child, off we went to the doctor’s office.

Unlike my kids, my dog didn’t once ask if they would be getting a shot. Anyway, after a brief exam, my vet said it wasn’t anything serious and asked if I was giving my dogs an Omega-3 supplement. She started explaining the benefits, and I began to wonder why I wasn’t. I take one. Why not my dogs?

Common Signs of Omega-3 Deficiency

• Hair loss/excessive shedding
• Dry, flaky skin
• Ear infections
• Hot spots
• Excessive itching
• Coat issues

Most people don’t realize the importance of an Omega-3 supplement. More importantly, they don’t know common indicators that their dog has a deficiency. Those who do know how important Omega-3’s are think that their dogs are getting enough in the food they eat. However, did you know that Omega-3 fatty acid are susceptible to heat, and when dog food is cooked or processed the extreme heat renders most Omega’s biologically unavailable. That means your dog is not receiving any of the benefits – and could be suffering because of it.

There’s a reason they are called essential fatty acids. Just like humans, they are vital to the health of our dogs. Fortunately, there are ways to make sure your furry friend gets all the Omega-3’s they need.

1. Raw diets – unprocessed, raw foods, such as salmon, are loaded with Omega-3’s. While some vets and dog owners love this healthy approach to feeding, there are some questions about whether or not the nutrients are balanced. While this approach appears beneficial, it’s difficult to make sure your dog is getting all the vitamins and minerals needed for optimal health. Not to mention, this approach can be very costly.

2. Omega-3 pills or pumps – These can be very helpful when trying to ensure a healthy amount of Omega-3’s in your dog’s diet. However, not all supplements are created equal. Some supplements derive the majority of their Omega’s from larger fish, such as salmon. Here’s the problem – because salmon and other Omega-3-rich fish are higher up the food chain, they are prone to having higher levels of mercury, lead and other toxins. Not good. Oh, and I forgot to mention the smell. I tried hiding these potent pills in the kibble. LOL! I’m guessing your dogs are like mine. They could sniff out that stench if I dipped it in chocolate, wrapped it in bacon, fried it and served it with a ranch dipping sauce. Not happening!

3. Omega-3 soft chews – These I kind of stumbled on. They are much like pills, but dogs seem to enjoy them more than the pills that need to be swallowed. Just like the pills, however, you still need to be careful about the ingredients. A friend recommended Omega-3 Select chews. I like these because they’re made from anchovies, which have some the highest concentrations of Omega’s of any fish. Also, because these are small fish with a shorter lifespan, they don’t contain the high level of toxins like other large fish. Plus, each purchase of Omega-3 Select chewsprovides meals for up to 21 shelter dogs. I haven’t tried one, but my dogs seem to like the taste too. I’ll leave it up to you to confirm this for yourselves.

Do What’s Best for Your Dog!

The bottom line…we all want what’s best for our dogs. What works for me may not work for you. However, making sure our dogs live long healthy, happy lives is all that matters. Ensuring your dog gets a healthy dose of Omega-3 fatty acids is a key piece of the puzzle.

Written by Scott Haiduc in the newsletter 

Sep 22 2017

Interview of Tenney Mudge the Inventor of the Break-away Collar

Break-away collars are manufactured by several different companies. Today we wanted to share the personal interview of Tenney Mudge the creator of the break-away collar. Her story will bring tears and smiles to you and your family.

PetSafe® is honored to present the story of Tenney Mudge, the inventor of the KeepSafe® Collar. Join us as we go in-depth with her on what lead her to create this product, how accidental dog collar accidents can occur, and much more.


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