Land Rover’s gone to the dogs

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Land Rover recently announced that it is launching a range of premium Pet Packs to help Land Rover owners’ four-legged friends travel in the lap of luxury.

Each Pet Pack includes accessories to suit a range of requirements, including a premium quilted load space liner to protect against paw prints, a foldable pet carrier, an access ramp, a spill-resistant water bowl, and portable rinse system for muddy walks.

Grant a boon to human and canine seniors

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Love is in the air for senior dogs and older adults at the Oregon Humane Society, thanks to a recent grant from The Grey Muzzle Organization, a national nonprofit, to help rehome more dogs ages seven and older. Through the grant, adoption fees will be waived for all senior dogs adopted by adults 60 and older during OHS’s Senior Tuesday.

By offering these senior dogs with their adoption fee waived, OHS will be able to transfer in more senior dogs from partner shelters, giving them a second chance at a loving home.

“We are very grateful for this grant from The Grey Muzzle Organization,” says Sharon Harmon, OHS President and CEO. “This will give more senior dogs the chance to find a loving home with an older adult.”

Learn more about OHS’s Senior Tuesday and see adoptable pets at oregonhumane.org/adopt/adoption-specials.

House members say “no” to horse slaughter

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The Humane Society of the United States and the Humane Society Legislative Fund released a statement applauding the 218 Representatives — constituting a majority of the US House — who have signed on as sponsors and cosponsors of the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act to bring an end to the export and slaughter of American equines for human consumption. With broad bipartisan support, the bill aims to protect our nation’s equines from the cruel and predatory horse slaughter industry, which is opposed by an overwhelming majority of Americans, enriches a tiny handful of profiteers and places all equine companions at risk. 

“We commend these federal legislators who have taken a stand with most Americans who view our horses as partners in work, recreation and sport, and as cultural icons for the crucial role they’ve played in our nation’s history,” said Kitty Block, acting president and CEO of the HSUS. “With a bipartisan majority supporting the bill, we urge House leadership to put the SAFE Act on the suspension calendar for a vote soon, and the Senate to follow suit.”

New app connects pet owners, caregivers

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The TrustedHousesitters app is a new way for pet parents to connect with caring, verified house and pet sitters who are willing to take care of pets for free. Available on the App Store, the app is free to download and enables owners and sitters to connect and stay in touch, no matter where they are in the world. 

Timed to celebrating the app’s launch, TrustedHousesitters compiled culminated a top 100 list, after two years of polling animal lovers in 130 countries about their favorite pet-friendly destinations. Several Oregon venues made the list, including Multnomah Falls, along with several Portland-area cafés — Bipartisan Cafe, Fleur de Lis Bakery & Café, and Barista Café.  

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Bipartisan was the most popular with animal lovers surveyed, ranking #59. Fleur de Lis ranked #62, and Barista ranked #86.  

Greg, Manager of the Fleur de Lis, said, “Dogs and other pets are always welcome . . . . They are considered to be just as important as our human customers. Our patio is comfortable for your pet year round”. 

Also making the list at #95 is Mark Ridges Winery, where pet lovers can soak up the views, live music and wine, while their pooch plays with the two resident Golden Retrievers. 

Tim Lyons, managing director of TrustedHousesitters said: “We are extremely proud of the pet-friendly cafes in Portland, they have put Oregon on the map as a pet-loving state. All four coffee shops and restaurants have had numerous recommendations.” 

See the full list of the 100 most pet-friendly places in the world at trustedhousesitters.com/top-pet-friendly-places.

New green groomer rolls in

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Local marketing professional Greg Robeson has closed his longtime agency to follow two of his greatest passions: dogs and the environment.

Oct 1, Robeson launched Green Whiskers, an earth-friendly mobile pet salon featuring technology that uses up to 90% less water than traditional methods. He began planning the business last year after attempting to schedule mobile grooming for his family’s Golden Retriever, Sally.

After receiving a call-back from just one groomer — which was booked for months — Robeson researched and confirmed a need for more local mobile groomers. He also discovered a grooming system that injects cleaning solution directly onto the fur and skin and then suctions the moisture, using less than one gallon of water (traditional shampooing can use up to 10). Best of all, the technology feels like a massage.

Robeson is committed to a calm, pampering canine experience and outstanding results thanks to an award-winning show groomer. Also in the wings —grain-free vegan cookies that in tests are getting great reviews.

Following the launch of Green Whiskers, Robeson plans to add more mobile salons in the coming years. In support of this, he is hosting a unique GoFundMe campaign, seeking a total of $15,000 from 30 dog lovers who will receive a year’s worth of free grooming.

Learn more at greenwhiskers.com.

Yes! Yes! to Nono the foster dad

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We’re head over tails for this member of Spot Magazine’s extended family. Meet Nono, the French Bulldog and foster dad extraordinaire.

When Nono’s mom isn’t creating artwork and breed profiles for Spot’s “Matchmaker” series, Megan Noes is managing the kitten nursery at New York City’s ASPCA. During kitten season, when itty-bitty orphans fill the cages, Megan often takes her adorable work home with her.

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That’s how she discovered Nono’s superpower. “I didn't know if he'd do well with kittens because he likes to roughhouse and is very interested in adult cats he sees,” Megan says. “But we tried it with him on leash and he was very polite. So we just kept them supervised and he does great with them. Now they are his little buds!”

Now a treasured part of the shelter’s life-saving team, Nono has fostered six litters — 17 tiny kittens in all. His gift has also made him a media darling — in recent months he’s been celebrated by national news outlets and humans everywhere, including all of us at Spot.

Photo credits:  ASPCA

Get your costume ready

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Vancouver’s Furry Friends cat rescue has a plan for this year’s fundraiser that could fill your Instagram feed. Organizers at the all-volunteer rescue encourage guests to attend in costumes that celebrate the historical spirit of the legendary Three Musketeers — but with a feline flair.

The fundraiser, happening Saturday, Sept 15 at Vancouver’s Firstenburg Community Center, supports operating costs for and improvements to the rescue’s recently purchased Halfway House, which expanded shelter capacity. 

Whiskers, swords, and costumes are optional, but registration is required. Get tickets and details at FurryFriendsWA.org.

Pawternity Leave for pet parents

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Before you get too excited, this leave is for employees at the Scandinavian pet food company, Musti Group. Roughly 90% of the company’s 1500 employees have pets, and now they can get three days of paid leave when they adopt a new four-legged family member.

Musti CEO David Ronnberg, now everyone’s dream boss, says, “Adopting a pet is a significant decision and changes everyday life considerably. We want to support our employees during their first days with the new family member and ensure that they can enjoy those precious moments to the fullest.”

Meanwhile, here in the US, where only 12% of workers get paid paternity leave, don’t hold your breath for pawternity leave.

Are favorite health foods good for dogs?

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Not necessarily, says Veterinarian Katy Nelson, who follows the latest trends as host and executive producer of a popular Washington, DC televised pet program. Set down the goji berry and kale smoothie and check out this doctorly advice:

-        Eat that whole avocado yourself — it’s not good for dogs. The fruit, stem, leaves, and seeds contain a compound called persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs.

-        Feel free, however, to share your turmeric and coconut oil. The mild-tasting, boldly-yellow spice revered for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-bacterial, and possibly ant-cancer properties might interact with other medications, so ask your vet first. Tumeric is good to pair with coconut oil, as it aids absorption of the healing properties. Dr. Nelson says it’s okay in small amounts or as a topical treatment for itchy, dry skin. Just don’t get excited over rumors that the oil can cure thyroid or other diseases in your dog. There’s scant evidence to support such claims.

-        Flax seed oil? Probably yes, says Dr. Nelson. There’s evidence that it’s good for dogs’ skin and joint health, but only your vet can say if it might be right for your pup.

-        Finally, while trustworthy studies are scarce, Nelson says her own pets and patients do well on hempseed oil for anxiety or arthritis pain, so it’s worth a conversation with your own vet.

Fear & Loathing on the 4th

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4th of July fireworks can sound like the end of the world to pets. Managing a fraidy-cat or jittery dog can mean a long and trying holiday for you, too. Every year, countless panicked pets get hurt or lost trying to flee the terrifying sights and sounds, but these coping strategies will keep you and yours happy and safe until the skies clear.

Give dogs a good walk or playtime early in the day so they’re happily tired before nightfall.

Keep pets at home and indoors. You might need to do this for several nights, depending on how many days of revelry your neighbors observe.

Close the drapes and turn on soothing music to drown out the scary stuff.

Consider a fun distracting game. Coax a mildly nervous cat into a stress-relieving game with a laser or toy. Or fire up the hot-air popcorn popper for an entertaining, chase-worthy dog snack that also makes a distracting white noise.

If you know your kiddos get seriously worked up, your vet may prescribe anti-anxiety meds.

Talk to a good pet supply store: many can recommend over-the-counter treatments.

If — Dog forbid — a pet escapes and goes missing, get in touch with nearby shelters ASAP. Shelter staff work hard before, on, and after the holiday reuniting panicked pets with their worried people.