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Pet Safety 101: Finding the Right Tools to Keep Your Pet Safe

Whether you own dogs, cats, chickens, or rabbits, it’s important to invest in the right tools to keep your pet safe. For many of us, our pet is like our child and is treated as a part of the family. Wouldn’t you want to invest in a high-quality car seat for your child? Or make sure they are wearing a helmet and every other safety pad when they ride a bike? These days, it’s not much different when considering your pet. So, if you’re concerned about your pet safety in the colder months, in your home, and around disasters, but don’t know where to start, you’ve come to the right place.

Fall/Winter Pet Safety

The leaves are changing and the temperature is dropping. Now that you can finally walk your dog without worrying about his paws burning, there’s a few other things you should put into consideration for pet safety.

  • Now that you and your dog will be more active in the cooler weather, you may want to feed him a little more to build up the calories. This may or may not apply to you as well when Thanksgiving comes around.
  • Autumn is the time of year when snakes are preparing for hibernation. They are still out and still very much a threat, so be sure to keep an eye out for slithering creatures who may hurt your pet (and you). (Source)
  • If you live in an area where it snows, make sure to keep your pet’s paws safe from the salt. After every walk, it’s smart to wipe down their paws so it doesn’t cause irritation.
  • Just like leaving pets in a hot car, leaving pets in the cold can be dangerous. If you see anyone who has left their pet in the cold, speak out by documenting what you see and contacting local animal control or a sheriff’s office. You could be saving a life! (Source)

original-pet-gazebo-pet-safety

Pet-Proofing Home

No matter what season it is, it’s important to always make sure your home is an environment that takes pet safety into consideration. Here’s just some ways you can make sure your pet is safe and happy in your home.

  • Place all chemicals far out of pet’s reach like on a high shelf
  • Keep trash cans covered and inside of a locked cabinet
  • Place all dangling wires out of reach and out of chewing range
  • In fact, make sure all small, chew-able items are out of your pet’s reach
  • If your pet is outside, make sure he has protection from the elements (Hint: The Pet Gazebo works great for that)
  • If it’s extremely cold or hot outside, don’t leave your pet out for long periods of time (Source)
pet-safety-border-collie

Image via Torrey Wiley

Disaster Safety

Disasters can be hard to prepare for because of their unpredictability and because they aren’t very common. However, it’s still crucial to have a contingency plan just in case something happens, because you won’t have time to worry about pet safety. There’s a few things to consider when preparing for a disaster.

  • Research evacuation locations for your pet ahead of time so that in the event something were to happen, you already know where your pet will be safe
  • Be sure to keep all microchip, ID tags and license registrations up-to-date so you and your pet will be reunited if you get separated
  • Prepare an emergency kit for you and your pet. Some things it can include are: a leash, collar, extra ID tags, food and water, and any important documents including proof of ownership and health records.
  • Be sure to have large enough carriers for your pet set aside in an easy-to-grab location (Source)

Additional Tips and Tools for Pet Safety

If you’re looking to invest some extra money for your pet safety, here’s a few things you can look into.

  • Microchip – Placing a microchip under your pet’s skin is an easy and wallet-friendly way to making sure you don’t lose your pet. If your pet runs away, local shelters will be able to find and contact you in order to reunite you and your pet.
  • GPS Collar – It’s the 21st century,  so it only makes sense we are able to put a GPS system in your pet’s collar. With this handy device, you’ll be able to locate your pet wherever he is located so he won’t be gone too long without you.
  • Underground fence – If your pet is one for escaping, you may want to look into installing an underground fence. You can create a perimeter which will give your pet a small shock through their collar should they try to cross it. (Source)
Pet-Safety-microchip

Image via womansday.com

 

For additional pet safety information, connect with us on Facebook for daily articles and updates which may pertain to keeping your pet safe. Additionally, you can take a look at some of our products on our website which are all designed to keep your loved one safe and comfortable no matter where you are.

Finding the Best Outdoor Dog Kennel for Your Pet

Best Outdoor Dog Kennel
No matter what kind of dog you have there are times that they have to be secured outside. Whether it’s at home just for fresh air, or out on the road with your pup, you need to have a way to keep them safe and secure. Today we’re going to help you find the best outdoor dog kennel for your pet.

What is the best outdoor dog kennel for you?

 

There are a lot of options to consider when you’re building your dog’s kennel. You’ll need to think about the size, the placement, how it’s going to look. But before you get to that you need to make the most basic decision. Do you want your kennel to be… 

Portable…

Best Outdoor Dog Kennel

Do you take your pet with you everywhere you go? Work, the park, and even on the road? Then you want to look for a portable kennel. Most pet stores are carrying more and more portable kennels, and they can be useful for everything from holding a pup in place for a few minutes, to your pet’s own pup tent when you’re out camping. There are a few important factors to keep in mind to have the best portable dog kennel possible.
  • Ease of Set Up – Keep in mind that until you get this set up your pet is going to have to be tied to something or in the car, so you need to be able to set it up quickly and easily.
  • Weight – You’re going to be lugging this around, so you want something that doesn’t weigh too much for you to lift on your own.
  • Security – The whole point here is to keep Fido from running off and getting into things she shouldn’t. You’ll want a kennel that can be latched closed, and if your pup is a jumper you’ll want some sort of roof or cover.
 …Or Permanent?
If your needs are just at home your options are a lot wider, but the cost can be a lot higher too. Your options are going to range from a total D.I.Y. job like this…
Best Outdoor Dog Kennel
to buying pre-fabricated kennel panels that allow you to set up a permanent kennel in not much more time than a portable kennel like these.
 Best Outdoor Dog Kennel
Some things to consider when you’re building the best outdoor dog kennel for your pet:
  • Flooring – What sort of ground are you going to set up your kennel on? Graded concrete, pea gravel, dirt, or grass? The ground you build your kennel on will determine how you secure the kennel to the ground. This will also determine just how permanent you can make your kennel.
  • Materials – There are plenty of materials that you can build, from wooden fencing, to chain link, to welded wire panels. Each material has pluses and minuses, and you’ll need to decide which best suits your needs.
  • Length of Time – How long is your dog going to be in the kennel? If it’s just going to be a few minutes or an hour at a time, you’ll need a lot less to go with it. If it’s going to be hours or the whole day, you’ll need to consider things like covers that protect from the elements, food and water bowls, and misters to keep your dog cool when it’s hot.
  • Appearance – This is going to be a permanent (or at least semi permanent) part of your yard. What do you want it to look like? How do you want it to work with the rest of your furniture back there? These are all things you’ll need to consider before you start buying the parts to build your kennel.
The Pet Gazebo is a great option as either a portable or permanent kennel.
There are plenty of boxed kennels on the market, or you can build one from scratch, with materials from a local building supply store. Keep these tips in mind and you’ll end up with the best outdoor dog kennel.

10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

 

Let’s face it, we love to pamper our pets. We comment and joke about how our dogs live better than we do, but in reality we like to live vicariously through our pup’s pampered lives. Sometimes that isn’t always the case and we like to imagine our pets as mini versions of ourselves.

 

 1. Just ask Paris Hilton…

…She had a replica of her house built for her dogs complete with light fixtures and designer pillows. This might actually be one of the only dog houses that won’t make the pet parent jealous-as it is basically the same house that the pet parent owns. (source)Paris Hilton's Dog house will make ANYONE jealous, 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

 

2. City Living

OK, so now that I have already made my list null and void, let’s continue on shall we? If your pooch is looking for something a little more along the lines of city living then look no further than this DIY Brooklyn Brownstone made by artist Bruce Tunis. This two story brownstone comes complete with working street light and of course the stoop that makes this style home so distinctive. (source)Brooklyn Brownstone Dog House will Make you jealous of your pet, 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

3. Mediterranean Mansion

If the close quarters of an urban brownstone town-home aren’t really your style then this Mediterranean mansion should do the trick. This bad boy will cost you a pretty penny and was apparently designed for a Hollywood celebrity. Who is that celeb? No clue, but we can probably rule out Paris Hilton as her pooch palace is featured above. (source)Mediterranean mansion dog house will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

4. Crown Jewel

Speaking of palaces; how about a palace inspired dog house? Hmm-any palaces immediately come to mind? Of course, obviously the Taj Mahal! The “crown of palaces” (thank you Wikipedia) inspired doghouse is a marvel of Mughal architecture and can be had for a measly $40,000.00. If this home doesn’t make you jealous then I don’t know what will. (source)Taj Mahal dog house will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

5. Brick Colonial Manor

Not really into the exotic curves of the domed Taj Mahal? Looking for something a little more stately? Then check out this brick, colonial styled and fully loaded dog house! The amenities offered include: air conditioning, running water, heat and lighting! Stately and stylish. (source)This brick Colonial inspired mansion will make you jelaous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

6.Cute Cottage

Looking for something equally attractive but a little more understated? Check out Advantek’s Garden Cottage dog house. This adorable dog house comes with a garden box, vented window, food and toy storage box, as well as a set of bowls for food and water. And yes, the tiny adorable porch is included. (source)This cute Garden Cottage from Advantek will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

7. As fun as a Barrel full of dog

Want something even more understated than a cottage? Do you like your barkers barrel aged? Then you are in luck! This DIY dog house is the perfect way to add some homey warmth to your household and it comes with the added bonus of being able to brag to your friends that you drank that barrel empty yourself! (source)This DIY barrel dog house will make you jealous of your pet's drinking prowess. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

8. Thatch is how you do it

You like the cottage idea but want something that more closely resembles your favorite author and playwright’s home from the 16th century? The Shakespearean, Stratford-Upon-Avon inspired dog house actually more closely resembles the farmhouse of Shakespeare’s wife Anne Hathaway (no, not the award winning actress from Les Misérables). Anyway, be sure to dress up your pup in the poofy white collar thing to keep the wardrobe time period appropriate. (source)This thatch roof dog house will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

9. Regal Beagle

So, you like the English styling, but want something a little more regal? Then you should see this Queen Anne style dog house. The house borders on ostentatious but the colors, unlike the actual Queen Anne style homes, which are generally bright red with dark trimmings, are much more muted, but include a stunning turret roof which is a real eye catcher and typifies homes of the era. Not included: blurry dog. (source)THis Austrlian Queen Anne inspired dog mansion will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

10. The Wright Dog House For you

Now this one is really cool. This Frank Lloyd Wright designed dog home is guaranteed to make you jealous of your pet, because chances are you don’t live in a home designed by the man who the American Institute of Architects dubbed as “the greatest American architect of all time.” The dog house might not look like much on its own, but the story and history makes this one undeniably jealousy inspiring. (source)This Frank Lloyd Wright designed dog house will make you jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

11. Bonus!

Speaking of famous architects…(source)A Frank Gehry dog house would definitely make jealous of your pet. 10 Cool Dog Houses that Will Make You Jealous of your Pet

Chickens 101: Your Introduction to Backyard Chicken Coops

Backyard “chickening” is a trend which has taken the world by storm. Those living in an urban or suburban lifestyle are able and excited to have a small taste of farm life right in their backyard. Besides being really fun pets, backyard chickens provide many benefits including fresh eggs (mmm, imagine a spinach omelet straight from your backyard!), fertilizers, meat, and slug control. If you’re looking to add some chickens into your life, your first step is finding the perfect chicken coop for your backyard. Here are some tips to consider  when deciding between backyard chicken coops.

Getting Started with Chickens

Getting started with chickens can be a fun and exciting experience. Before getting your backyard chickens, you’ll need to address a few things:

  • Check your local ordinances and code regulations to make sure you are legally allowed to own chickens in your area. Some places limit the number of chickens and may require permits for a coop.
  • Ask your neighbors how they feel about having some chickens living next door. Even if you’re only planning on owning hens, chickens do make noise and some people aren’t too fond of that!
  • Depending on your reasons for owning chickens, you’ll want to read up on the different aspects of having them. For example, if you want pet chickens, you may have to take them to the vet once in a while. It’s a good idea to have a basic understanding of chicken illnesses so you can identify them when you see them.
  • Pick out the perfect spot in your backyard for your new companions. You’ll also want to figure out how many chickens you want and what type of coop will work best for them. This is the fun part!

Choosing Your Perfect Backyard Chicken Coops

Backyard-Chicken-Coops

Image via Tractor Supply (http://ow.ly/Psw96)

When choosing the perfect backyard chicken coop, there’s a few things you’ll need you consider:

Functionality: You’ll want to find backyard chicken coops with enough room for your chickens. Ideally, every hen should have around 2-4 square feet of space. Additionally, you’ll need at least one nesting box for every 3-4 hens to lay their eggs. Roosting bars are also crucial to allow your chickens to perch.

Design: For some people more than others, the look of the coop is very important to match the overall theme of your home. There are some great inspirations here and here. Glance over these to learn what your chicken coop taste may be!

The Run: Having a run for your chickens will allow them space to move around, go digging for worms, and stretch out their wings. Depending on your budget and allocated space, this is an important piece to consider for all backyard chicken coops. Free-range is also an option, but beware the potential dangers of predators.

Tips and Tricks

Here are some tips and tricks from people who own chickens!

From Farmer Liz:

Coop placement is important (shade in the Summer, dry location in rainy climates). Don’t plan on just getting a few…it’s an addiction. There will always be more. Make sure the coop and run are predator proof. Research the different breeds as some do better in the heat, some do better in the cold, some lay more eggs than others, some are more inclined to brood and some are more or less friendly than others.

From Chris Anderson:

I’m still fairly new to keeping chickens but I can give you some frustrations and tips I’ve been given. I have lots of fruits and veggies growing in the yard and I am constantly trying to keep the chickens from eating everything when I let them out of the coop. I’ve learned that if you free range them, feed them heavily just before letting them out. Chickens can’t over eat so if they are full they stay out of your goodies.

 

If you’re looking for the backyard chicken coop of your dreams, make sure to check out Advantek’s line of chicken coops, available online and at hundreds of pet retailers throughout the country!

Spring is here!

The solstice officially arrives today, March 20th, which means it is spring time! The coming of spring means warm weather, sunny skies and more chances to be outdoors! So, what makes the spring, spring? The spring marks what is called the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere, in the southern hemisphere it is the autumnal equinox (the fall). The Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator – from south to north. This happens on March 19, 20 or 21 every year. Why is it called the equinox? The term equinox is derived from Medieval Latin “equinoxium” meaning equality of day and night. On the equinox the earth is tilted at the exact same angle in which the sun’s rays are received and therefore the sun is directly overhead and the day and night are split evenly, or at least extremely close to it.

 

colonialsarah1

So, what does this mean for our furry and feathered friends? Springtime has long been associated with rabbits and their fertility which is why a rabbit is associated with Easter. So, for rabbits spring is the best breeding time. Rabbits also molt year round, but during the fall and spring is when they shed the most. Another thing to keep in mind during this transitional season is the volatility of the weather. As a general rule temperatures begin to heat up, but that also comes with thunderstorms and rain. The days tend to be warmer but the nights generally remain cool, so be aware of your rabbit’s environment and keep the flow of hay into your rabbit hutches steady. Hay is an essential part of a rabbit’s diet, digestion and overall health and well being. Playing with your rabbit is also important and the colder temperatures may have prevented some of it. Let your rabbit out of it’s hutch for a while to roam around the yard or the living room. Be sure to interact and play, but if you are going to let them play indoors, be sure to rabbit proof your home!

 

 

And of course Advantek is here for your rabbit care needs, so if you are in the market for a new hutch, cage, or feeder, click here to see what we have to offer.

Stay tuned here we will have more helpful tips for you and your pets. Coming up next: Your Chickens in the Spring!Gloria

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St. Patrick’s Day!

St. Patrick’s Day is here and if you are anything like us you are going to want to enjoy that festive spirit with your pets. So, while you are getting prepared to celebrate with your human or furry friends, here is a little bit of background on the holiday.

The first thing that probably comes to mind in regards to the holiday is wearing green. Wearing green might seem like kind of an obvious nod to those who live or descend from the Emerald Isle, but it has more to do with “the wearing of the green” which is in direct reference to the shamrock. The reason for the shamrock’s importance is St. Patrick, the namesake of the holiday and according to legend, the bringer of Christianity to the island, used the shamrock to explain the holy trinity to the Irish pagans. Over the years the wearing of the green evolved from specifically shamrocks to as much green as possible. The evolution of green’s ubiquity isn’t exactly known, it could be in part thanks to the legend that a leprechaun (but more likely an overly zealous friend or co-worker) will pinch you if you don’t participate. To help your pet get into the spirit and avoid being pinched by a Leprechaun (or you), run down to your local pet store and pick up a little shamrock top hat or green bandana. Be sure to snap a photo as proof because your pet may become warm under too much clothing or elastic bands and may not want to play along as long as you hoped.

Now that your outfit is sorted let’s get to the second most obvious thing that comes to mind when St. Patrick’s day is brought up; green beer, or drinking a lot in general. Green beer is a simple extension of the previously mentioned green ubiquity in the modern day celebration. In line with the modern day celebration of St. Patrick’s day, in an effort to celebrate the Irish people, drinking has become very prominent. In reality, as of 2014, Ireland is not in the top ten in either the most alcohol consumed per capita or by volume, so while throwing back a couple of pints of Guinness to honor and celebrate the Irish, let’s try and make sure we steer clear of stereotype territory. In fact you couldn’t get a drink in Ireland on St. Patrick’s day until the 1970’s. In 1903 when it first became an official holiday in Ireland it was included in what is known as Holy Week and was therefore observed as a solemn and holy obligation where pubs were officially closed rather than a celebration of their culture via pints of their favorite ale. But because things change this is no longer the case and most of Ireland celebrates the day in a similar fashion as Americans do, though the drinking is generally preceded by large feast. So, if you and your pet decide to throw one back in honor of the Emerald Isle please make sure your pet’s drink is non-alcoholic, but it can be green, as most food dyes fit for humans are also fine for animal consumption.

Please have a safe and happy holiday. Remember, most of us probably have work tomorrow. Just in case, you might want to save a local taxi service’s number in your phone, or be sure to have Uber or Lyft, already set up.

For some further reading and some of the sources I used check out the links below:

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/03/0312_040312_stpatrick.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/barbara-e-royal-dvm/post_9177_b_6861754.html
http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/publications/global_alcohol_report/msb_gsr_2014_3.pdf

Sláinte!

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Global Pet Expo 2015 Recap

The 2015 Global Pet Expo has come and gone.  As usual, we got the chance to meet some some amazing people and companies. A couple notable guests to the show that we were able to meet were Paula Deen at the booth of her new pet food partner Hugs Pet Products and Jackson Galaxy at the Petmate booth.

We especially want to thank All Points Marketing for representing us so professionally, and facilitating so many great meetings.

As for the highlights of the show in regards to Advantek; we debuted a few new items including an introduction to the Nantucket Line of GoneGreen dog houses, and chicken and rabbit hutches. This is all the info about the new line we can divulge for the moment, but keep checking back here for further updates. Advantek also unveiled a two new marketing initiatives; we officially debuted our brand new item catalog giving retailers, dealers, distributors and wholesalers an easy way to become familiar with the ADVANTEK brand. We also showed our first batch of GoneGreen retail signage displaying all of the products in an effort to help smaller retail stores display more items without using extra floor space. If you are a retailer interested in this program feel free to contact us using the button at the top of the page or write to info@advantekpet.com, to be considered for our test program.

 

We have already begun to plan for the National Hardware Show, May 5 – 7, 2015 in Las Vegas.

Stay Tuned for upcoming events! And remember to follow us:

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Welcome to the new Advantek!

As mentioned in our previous post; we at Advantek have undertaken an entire re-brand and culture shift. We have always focused on making quality products, but we have shifted our focus to ensure that our products aren’t just good quality, but better products. Our entire line is being redesigned, refined and repackaged. This isn’t just a facelift; we are overhauling everything and it will all be rolling out over the course of the year. We continue to innovate and update, so stay tuned here for all the latest events, news and product updates for you and your pet.

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New Year, New Look!

If you’re looking at this, you’ve probably already seen the big changes we’ve got underway here at Advantek!  You’ll notice that in addition to our attractive new logo, we’ve got a whole new aesthetic here at advantekpet.com. We’ve put a lot of work into the new look with our partners over at Redwall.  They’ve been great to work with and if you have any sort of branding or design needs you should absolutely reach out to them!

After 10 years in business, we felt that it was time for a new look that speaks to who we are now and more effectively conveys the message that while Advantek is still committed to providing pet owners with a quality product at a great price, we are now focusing on providing a better product.

We’re excited to introduce our new charitable giving program too, what we are calling Safe Shelter.  You can learn more about that here.

Over the next several months we will be rolling out new packaging, information sheets, and a host of other great stuff.