Whether they’re farm animals, cats or dogs we all want what's best for our pets—they’re all part of the family after all. As society has grown increasingly pet-obsessed, there’s been a huge surge in the number of products for pets. From the outrageous pet high chair to the widely practical Wink n Blink Safety Light, it’s hard to know the best pet products—and which your furry friend will actually enjoy.
To help you navigate the myriads of pet products out there, we’ve rounded up 10 great products for pets that are sure to show all your animals just how much you care, along with a few ticks and tricks for taking care of your pets.
Basic safety tips for pet owners
Sure you want to bring your pet everywhere you go--but there are a few basic safety rules that you should follow to ensure that your pet feels while they’re by your side.
Microchip your animal
According to a study by Science Daily, cats with microchips are 20 times more likely to be returned to their owners than cats without, while dogs with microchips were 2.5 times more likely to be returned home than those without. In the unfortunate event that you and your pet are seperated, a microchip is the most effective way to ensure their safe homecoming.
In order for microchips to work you need to register the microchip and be sure to keep your contact information up to date. The accuracy and usefulness of microchips will depend on the information that you give, so it’s important that you list a number of emergency contacts and regularly update your information.
Never let your dog ride in an open truck bed
The American humane society estimates that at least 100,00 dogs die each year after falling from open truck beds. Ensure the safety of your dog or other pet by arranging alternative forms of transportation, or adapting your truck bed to accommodate your animal.
If your dog must ride in the back of the truck, it should do so in a crate. This will protect your pet from the wind, rain, and sun. Make sure to tie the crate securely to the truck bed to avoid it from being tossed from the vehicle.
Check your pet’s collar regularly
Puppies and kitten can outgrow their collars very quickly, so be sure to check the fit regularly. A collar that is too tight is both uncomfortable for your animal, as well as a safety risk. Skin around the neck can literally grow around a collar that has been left on for too long, creating constant excruciating pain from your puppy or kitten.
It’s best to check collars once a week while your pet is still growing, and once a month once it is fully grown. Be sure to also check regularly if your adult pet has undergone significant weight loss/gain.
Protect your pet against attacks from wildlife
Protecting pets against wildlife attacks is especially important if you live on a farm or in a rural area and/or the animal spends significant time outdoors. Coyote and other wildlife attacks on pets are quite common, especially among those that are small or elderly. Taking a few precautions will greatly reduce the risk of an attack.
Coyotes and other wildlife are attracted by the sent of food, including cat and dog kibble, fallen fruit, and even bird feed. Avoid feeding pets outside if possible. If not, feed them during the day and remove all food bowls when finished. It is also important to remove fallen fruit from the yard as it is also likely to attract predators.
If you have chickens on your property, they can also attract unwanted attention from predators. Keep chicken in secure and protected coops to keep them, as well as your other pets safe from harm.
Make sure you’re using a choke chain properly
If you use a choke chain on your pet, make sure you do so properly. Before putting it on your animal, make sure the loop you’ve formed is in the shape of a P. This will ensure that the chain does not restrict your animals breathing when not pulling. If you put the chain on backwards it will stay tight and only get tighter when you tug on the leach.
Make sure you’re not using the choke chain as you would an everyday collar. There is a risk your animal could strangle itself to death or break its own neck because the chain got caught on something and they weren’t able to free themselves. Choke chains should only be used for training and walks.
Things to consider when there’s extreme weather
With the recent wildfires and hurricanes of last summer, it’s more important than ever to have an emergency plan in place for your pet in the event of extreme weather. Having a few simple plans will ensure the safety of your pet and the rest of your family.
The easiest thing you can do is prepare a simple emergency kit. Include a few basic pet products in the kit such as:
- Durable leashes/harnesses/carriers/collars for each pet
- Additional tags, with personal and vet contact information
- Pet Blanket
- Food for several days
- Water for several days
- Necessary medications, medical records
During bouts of extreme hot or cold, you should consider how the elements will affect your inside and outside animals. You should check on your livestock frequently and take action if needed. This includes making sure livestock are protected from the elements and that plenty of food and water are available. Have a plan in place to cooperate with neighbors in the even that supplies run short or access is difficult.
To keep livestock safe during extreme cold, you must:
- Provide feed and water regularly
- Keep drinking water troughs free of ice
- Ensure water pipes are working properly or manually carry water to animals if not
- Ensure that horses and ponies have access to shelter at all times
For all other pets:
- Allow any outside pet to come indoors during cold snaps or provide a heated, insulated shelter with a significant wind break, as well as a heated water bowl
- Keep pet’s exposure to the cold minimal. Opt for short walks and brief play in the backyard.
- When you must go outside, keep a close eye on your pet to make sure they’re tolerating it well
Droughts and extreme hot weather
During droughts and hot weather the greatest risk to animals is dehydration. Have a few plans in place and know what to do to ensure the safety of your pets and livestock during hot weather and droughts.
To keep livestock safe during extreme heat, you must:
- Catering to the daily minimum water needs of your animals:
- Milking cows- 10 to 15 gallons
- Other cattle- 10 gallons
- Horses- 5 to 12 gallons
- Pigs- 1 to 3 gallons
- Sheep- 1.5 gallons
- Poultry- 1 quart
- Keep in mind that you may need to allow more water for very young or old animals, or if the temperature rises
For all other pets:
- Keep an ice pack or wet towel for your pet to lay on
- Add ice cubes to the water dish
- Have a wading pool with shallow, cool water on hand
- Bring plenty of water on walks
- Keep walks to early mornings or late evenings
The Best Products for Pets
Wink n Blink Safety Light
The Wink n Blink safety light is perfect for any adventurous pets. Quickly clip the blinking light to your animal, and rest assured that cars, bike, and pedestrians are sure to see them even during the darkest of nights. What’s so great about the Wink n Blink is that it uses kinetic energy rather than traditional batteries, so you never have to worry about it going dead. It’s 100% waterproof and motion activated so you can keep it on your pet at all times.
Greenies Pill Pockets Chicken Flavor Treats for Dogs
Dogs eat pretty much anything--other than medicine. These treat pouches make it easy to slip your dog’s pills into a tasty treat that they’ll actually want to eat. The pouch design also makes it difficult for even the sneakiest of dogs to eat the gooddies and hide the pill.
Cordura Sheep Blanket
The Cordura Sheep Blanket is perfect for caring for your furry friends that probably don’t live in the house. The blanket is made from durable, rip-resistant material making it perfect for ewe lambs. The strong material keeps sheep clean while providing protection from the elements.
Catit Flower Fountain
This cat water fountain is more than just cute design, the three water flow setting allows even the most finicky feline to drink without fear. Because it’s not reachable there are fewer spills than with a traditional water bowl.
If there’s anything better than having one dog--it’s having two dogs. But, as anyone with multiple canines probably knows, walks are always a walk in the a park. Twisted leashes, dogs pulling in opposite directions, and the eternal ‘who’s gonna be first’ struggle can all be avoided. The two-dog coupler by Weaver Brahma Webb allows dog owners to easily walk all of their furry friends at once.