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Putting Our Best Paws Forward: Animal Aid Society

Putting Our Best Paws Forward: Animal Aid Society 0

Here at Doggie Dailies, we believe there is no better feeling than helping those in need. That's why every quarter we pick a new charity to donate a portion of our proceeds to!

We’re now in the third quarter of 2020 (July - October) and this quarter we're excited to be donating to Animal Aid Society of Hampton, Virginia.

About Animal Aid Society

Animal Aid Society (AAS) is a non-profit, no-kill dog shelter located in Hampton, Virginia. Since its founding in 1971, AAS has helped countless stray, abandoned, and abused dogs find their happily ever after in coastal Virginia. 

Open to the public 365 days a year, AAS utilizes campus-style kennels that give each of each dog their own temperature controlled housing with access to an outdoor area 24 hours a day. In it’s nearly 50 years of operation, AAS has transformed from a home-based, one-woman effort to a 41 kennel facility located on 7 acres of land with over 100 volunteers. 

After all these years, it remains committed to providing dogs with medical care and safe shelter until they can be placed with a foster family or with their forever family!

Noticing A Need 

Nearly 50 years ago, Sue Henninger, an animal advocate and military wife, noticed a sad trend in her coastal Virginia military community. When military families were given new orders and had to relocate, they often couldn’t bring their furry family members with them. The only option at the time was to surrender their pets to a kill shelter. 

Sue knew she couldn’t stand idly by and watch this happen. To avoid these animals being surrendered to a kill shelter, Sue offered to take in and care for these animals until they could be rehomed with loving families. That’s when the Animal Aid Society was founded. 

In its nearly 50 years of operation, with the generous support of their community and the tireless efforts of volunteers, AAS has transformed from a home-based, one-woman effort to a 41 kennel facility located on 7 acres of land with over 100 volunteers.

Driven By A Passion For Dogs 

Animal Aid Society is an all-volunteer organization! On average, the AAS volunteer force contributes 900 hours of every month, which translates to just under $275,000 annually in donated labor. Everyone from the daily dog walkers, the marketing team to the board members donates their time to create a safe haven for homeless dogs. That means that AAS is able to invest 100% of all donations and fundraising monies to provide for the dogs in their care. 

To encourage this passion in future generations, AAS partners with community groups (scouts and athletic teams) to create volunteer and educational opportunities for local teens and young adults. Families with children are encouraged to come and walk dogs in their park-like facility as a bonding experience and volunteering opportunity all rolled into one. 

The rescue strongly believes that the connection and interaction of volunteers with the animals results in a higher level of healing for both the volunteers and the animals. From walking and socialization to fundraisers and adoption events, volunteers are integral to the day-to-day operation of the rescue. 

Going the Extra Mile

Animal Aid Society has a comprehensive adoption process to ensure that each of their dogs is placed with a family that they will be able to thrive with. With each adoption, AAS provides as much information as possible about a dog’s medical history, personality, and temperament to the potential adopters. This allows the potential adopters to make an informed decision about whether the dog will be a good match for their family and lifestyle.

The relationship doesn’t end once the adoption is complete. Their positive reinforcement trainers are available to adopters for a no-cost consultation to help with the transition of bringing a new dog home.

If circumstances change or a placement doesn’t work out – AAS always takes the dog back. AAS has even gone so far as to fly a dog from across the continent when the family that adopted had to move overseas and couldn’t take the dog they adopted with them.  When AAS accepts a dog into their organization, they consider themselves to be responsible for that dog for the rest of his/her life. Once an AAS dog, always an AAS dog!

Effort to Rebuild

In 2016, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services changed the shelter rules, requiring public and private shelters to follow the same set of regulations. This rule change states that unattended outdoor enclosures should have impervious floors. This rule change meant that the outdoor run portion of each doggie apartment was in violation of the new rule.

The volunteers of AAS have embarked on the monumental task of redesigning their facility and raising the estimated $2 million dollars needed to complete it. The new facility will be bigger and better! The new plan calls for four new sets of kennels, with larger play yards and more climate-controlled spaces. There will be a retention pond to reduce flooding issues and more paths for walks. Additionally, the new layout will be more visitor-friendly and allow potential adopters to view each dog.

This new facility will allow AAS to continue providing a safe haven for homeless dogs in their care for the next 50 years! If you want to help support their fundraising efforts for their new facility, click here to donate.

Brewing for Breeds

In January of 2020, AAS partnered with Tradition Brewing of Newport News for their BrewDog celebration. That’s when they came up with the idea to create the perfect summer beer to help spread awareness about dogs in need and to help raise money to rebuild the shelter.

Over the July 4th weekend, Tradition Brewing released  “Chasin’ Tail Pale Ale”. This specialty brew features a picture and bio of an adoptable AAS dog. A portion of the proceeds from Chasin’ Tail Pale Ale is donated to AAS, helping them get closer to their fundraising goal to rebuild the shelter. 

Our friends at Animal Aid Society work hard each and every day to rescue, rehabilitate, and rehome as many dogs as possible, but they can’t do it alone!

There are a few ways you can help... 

Of course, you can make a donation to the Animal Aid Society. Any amount you can afford to give will help pups in need! You can also lend a helping paw by donating items from Animal Aid Society’s Amazon Wishlist. There are tons of needed items at all price ranges that will help out in a big way. 

Animal Aid Society has many adorable, deserving dogs available for adoption. If you live in or near coastal Virginia and are interested in adding a furry family member to your home, take a look at all the loveable dogs available for adoption. All adoptable dogs are up to date on shots, spayed/neutered, and micro-chipped. 

Not able to adopt? Help Animal Aid Society spread its message and mission with your friends. Share Animal Aid Society’s information on Facebook and Instagram to let your friends know about this amazing organization.

There are so many ways to support the Animal Aid Society. Visit their website for a full list of ways that you can help

To learn more about Animal Aid Society or to assist them in their mission, visit their website, ‘Like’ them on Facebook, or ‘Follow’ them on Instagram.

Gut Check: What Most Doggie Parents Don’t Know About Probiotics

Gut Check: What Most Doggie Parents Don’t Know About Probiotics 0

Did you know that the immune system of dogs resides in their gut just like that of humans? The gut is made up of about 70% of immune cells making it the biggest immune organ found in a body. Gastrointestinal health is critical to your pup’s overall well being.   

Just like humans, your dog’s gut is filled with bacteria - both good and bad strains - that can have a profound impact on your pup’s health and how he feels. This bacteria is often referred to by experts as the “forgotten organ”, or our microbiome. Bacterial imbalances can make your pet sick in all sorts of ways. The good news is that you can help fix those imbalances with the help of probiotics.  

Let’s take a look at the importance of bacteria to gut health, learn what probiotics are, and find out how probiotics can help your pup.

The Importance of Bacteria in Your Pet’s Gut 

An animal's body plays host to trillions of bacteria on a regular basis, and at least 70 percent of this bacteria lives in the mucosal tissues that line the digestive system.  If the thought of your beloved dog filled with bacteria makes you cringe, think again. While some bacteria can indeed have damaging effects, other strains of bacteria actually provide a variety of health benefits, including:

  • Protecting the body against infection
  • Synthesizing vitamins and other key nutrients
  • Helping your pet digest food

What happens when your dog has too little of this "good bacteria" in his gut? The bad bacteria has an opportunity to overrun his digestive system -- and so it does. Many of the resulting problems strike the digestive system directly, resulting in constipation, diarrhea, digestive ulcers, bloating, discomfort, and gas. Cases of "leaky gut" related to bacterial imbalances may be factors in the development of diabetes, arthritis, allergies, mood disorders, liver disease, and obesity.

Fortunately, you can fight fire with fire -- or rather, you can fight bad bacteria with good bacteria. These positive bacterial strains take up space in the gut that would otherwise be occupied by destructive strains, resulting in a healthier gut and a healthier dog. The foods and supplements that provide these positive strains are called probiotics.

What are Probiotics for Dogs?

Probiotics are useful living microorganisms in the digestive tract. They produce short-chain fatty acids, which help treat and prevent several gastrointestinal system diseases by reducing the growth of harmful bacteria. 

There are a variety of different probiotics that provide a range of benefits. A variety of probiotic strains and their different benefits complement each other, enhancing their effectiveness. It ensures a healthy balance of bacteria is maintained and that no single group becomes too abundant.

Benefits of Probiotics for Dogs

Probiotics help to heal your pup from the inside out. By balancing the come with several health benefits to dogs. These include:

    • Stronger Immune System: Probiotics work throughout the dog's digestive tract to maintain good bacteria for the optimal immune system. They also reduce inflammation and other chronic diseases. 
    • Improved Brain Function: Probiotics support the production of neuropeptides and neurotransmitters in the gut. These microbiomes are helpful for brain health.
    • Supports the Digestive System: Probiotics enhance the digestion of food and the assimilation of minerals and vitamins. They also relieve irritable bowel syndrome and constipation. 
    • Prevents the Adverse Effects of Antibiotics: The presence of probiotics ensures antibiotics do not affect the good bacteria. This helps avoid side effects like diarrhea and other gastrointestinal diseases.
    • Improved Dental Health: By inhibiting the growth of bad bacteria and promoting the growth of good bacteria, probiotics reduce the growth of bacteria that leads to common oral and dental diseases, including periodontal disease and halitosis.
    • Other benefits: healthier coat and skin, allergy relief, and improved behavior and disposition. 

What to Look for in a Dog Probiotic

A variety of foods offer probiotic effects for dogs. If you want to make certain that your pet is receiving a healthy daily dose of probiotics, you’ll want to look into supplementation. Always consult with your veterinarian, but there are a few things you will want to look out for: 

  • Variety of Bacteria Strains: It’s important that the probiotic you choose includes a variety of different strains. This will make sure your pup is getting the full benefits of probiotics and ensure a healthy gut environment is maintained. Some of these strains include Lactobacillus plantarum, lactobacillus acidophilus, lactobacillus brevis, and bifidobacterium bifidum.
  • Colony Forming Units: Probiotics are made with colony forming units (CFU) to guard against the acidic stomach environment. The higher the number of CFUs, the more effective the probiotic. For the best supplements, go for probiotics with over 1 billion CFUs.
  • Additional Prebiotics: Prebiotics help support the growth of probiotics in the gut, improving the balance of good and bad bacteria.

Top Tips for Probiotics for Dogs

You are most likely to have several concerns when starting with the probiotics for dogs. Here are some of the tips to help you through:

  • Consult your veterinary on the best probiotics for your dog’s needs. The professional will advise you on the recommended probiotic strains and dosage.
  • Read the label of every probiotic before use. It provides information on ingredients, dosage, and direction of use.
  • The exact time it takes to notice positive changes in your dog depends on the dog and the probiotic.
  • Some dogs experience upset stomachs at the start of probiotics. Be sure to introduce new supplements gradually to your dog’s diet.

Bottom Line

Probiotics can help heal your dog from the inside out. If you're looking for one handy product that gives your pet the benefits of many powerful probiotic strains, look no further than Doggie Dailies. Our Advanced Probiotic Supplement for Dogs is rich in five critical Lactobacillus strains, with each strain including 200,000 live organisms. That's a total of 1 billion good bacteria in every dose.
  • Holly W
Nine Tips For Keeping Your Doggie Safe This Independence Day

Nine Tips For Keeping Your Doggie Safe This Independence Day 0

The sunshine and fresh air of summer make outdoor activities perfect for us and our dogs. With the fourth of July rapidly approaching, it’s a splendid time to take Independence Day safety into consideration for our four-legged family members. Keep your best friend in peak condition, mentally and physically, with these tips:

  1. Make sure the information on your dog’s tags is easily readable and has your current phone number and address. Or consider a GPS collar tracker, or better, a microchip. Just make sure all the information is up to date there, too.
  2. Keep your pups indoors during your celebrations. Find the quietest room in your house or apartment and turn up the TV or radio to help drown out the sounds of raucous revelling. Check out this playlist to relax Fido by the folks at Relax My Dog.
  3. Give your dog lots of TLC and something to take his mind off of the outside festivities. Try a big, meaty bone or KONG dog toy filled with kibble, his favorite snack, or doggie-approved peanut butter.
  4. Use natural calming aids. On its blog, Bring Fido suggests herbal treatments like lavender, valerian, and even hemp. You can apply them using essential oils, or buy them in chewable treats. With hemp, add a few drops to your dog’s food at dinnertime, or in a snack before the pyrotechnic fun begins.
  5. Consider a ThunderShirt or other comfort clothes for your pooch. Stories abound of their effectiveness, with ThunderShirt boasting a more than 80% proven success rate. 
  6. Put signs on doors to the outside, reminding guests not to let the dogs out. Woot! Woot! People who don’t own pets won’t have escape scenarios in mind when they visit.
  7. Be careful with chemicals! Like babies, dogs check things out with their mouths. The chemicals in fireworks (spent or not), lighter fluid, matches, and things like glow jewelry will all make him sick. The same applies to insect repellant and even Citronella. Use pet-friendly products on your pooch, and you, too, in case of licking.
  8. Watch for signs of heat-related illness and stay prepared to treat it. Check out The Drake Center’s list of heat-related signs to look for, and treatments should they occur. Never-ever-ever (times a million) leave your dog locked in a car. The inside of your vehicle can quickly reach 120 degrees, even in the shade with the windows cracked.
Be prepared. Have the telephone numbers and locations of the nearest emergency veterinary clinics handy just in case the worst happens. Have access to the ones closest to your home, the lake, or wherever you and your four-legged friend may visit.
  • Holly W
How to Keep Your Dog Cool in Hot Weather

How to Keep Your Dog Cool in Hot Weather 0

Dogs run into trouble in hot weather quicker than humans. They are more susceptible to heatstroke and are unable to sweat like humans so they are likely to overheat really quickly. This means that dog owners need to be alert to problems and prevent their pets from getting overheated, especially in summer. Here are some practical ways to keep your dog cool in hot weather.

Plan Ahead

If you know there's likely to be hot weather, start planning ahead with some simple things to keep your dog cool. Arrange some shade in the garden away from any direct sunlight or let the dog lie in a cooler part of the house. Damp towels for the dog to lie on helps keep it cool. Filling a hot water bottle with cold water for the dog to lie on also helps reduce any heat. If you have a paddling pool, encourage your dog to use it to cool off.

Time Your Walks

In hot weather, walk your dog during the cooler part of the day. Imagine stepping barefoot onto payment on a hot day. A dog's paw gets the same sensation if you take it for a walk in the hottest part of the day and this can actually lead to burned feet. The dog will also find it incredibly hot to walk as they have their coat to consider. Your dog will thank you for that walk when the temperature has lowered such as in the early morning or in the evening.

Never Keep a Dog in a Hot Car

One of the quickest places for a dog to overheat is in a car with the windows shut. Each year dogs die because the owner left them in a car on a hot day. Take your dog with you or leave it at home. Even if you parked the car in the shade and left a window open it is insufficient to keep the dog safe. On a hot day, dog owners need to plan ahead to avoid this problem.

Water is Vital

Dogs need to drink lots of water in hot weather. Make sure your dog has a full bowl of cold water at home. If you go out, take a supply with you so the dog can get a drink easily. This helps prevent heatstroke and dehydration.

Regular Grooming

Making sure your dog gets clipped regularly will ensure it has a healthy coat and that any excess hair from winter has been trimmed. Brushing will get rid of dirt and knots in their hair. Matted fur will trap heat so it is really important to free these from your dog's coat so it stays cool. Another hazard of matted dog hair is that it is attractive to flies where they lay eggs and this then becomes irritating and sore.

Adapt Your Games

Play is really important to dogs and keeps them alert. In hot weather, you should avoid too much running around as it leads to overheating. There are other fun activities to do with dogs such as sniffing out treats or sitting exercises. Using the garden sprinkler or getting them to play with a toy near a paddling pool will also keep them cool. Freezing some dog food will also help keep them cool as it acts as an ice popsicle. Ice cubes containing your dog's favorite treat are another great way of staying cool on a hot day. Some dogs like to swim but always be wary of tides and hidden hazards in rivers and oceans.

Know How to Recognize Heatstroke

Dog owners must be able to recognize the signs of heatstroke early so they can get help for their pets. Look out for glazed eyes, excess panting, vomiting or diarrhea, a rapid pulse, lack of coordination, and collapse. if you see these signs, get your dog to a shady area immediately. Cool them with cold wet towels and give them water or an ice cube to lick. Never place them directly into icy cold water as it will shock them. If the dog does not improve you need to get them to a veterinarian immediately.

  • Holly W