How to trim your pet's nails
The nails of most household pets can be trimmed by a veterinarian or animal health technician, or you can try at home. Here's a how-to from the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association.
1. Have someone hold your pet.
2. Use good trimmers. For small pets, key-chain nail clippers can be used.
3. Cut the nail three millimetres (1/8-inch) longer than the quick (the pink part that holds the blood vessel), where the nail is all white.
4. If your pet has black or coloured nails, in small increments, nip off the tip of the first nail until it's short enough, then use that as a guide for the other nails.
5. If nail bleeds, apply pressure to the end with a facecloth or bandage for about three minutes. Cornstarch may help the blood clot.
– Sarah Jane Silva
What to do when your cat or dog has had a litter, and now you need to find permanent homes.
Dr. Judy Au, a veterinarian and owner of the Danforth Veterinary Clinic in Toronto, has this advice for owners of a new litter:
• Get the word out: Hang a flyer, with pictures of the animals, the breed, age, sexes, and whether they have had any vaccines or de-worming, at your veterinarian's office.
• Visit the vet: It's your responsibility to have the animals vaccinated and de-wormed. Most clinics offer reduced prices if you bring in a litter.
• Ask questions of a potential buyer: Does anybody in the family have allergies? Are you financially able to look after a young animal? And ask for references. A potential buyer's vet is a good place to start.
• Fill the new owner in: Provide a list of what and when you've been feeding the pets, a house-training schedule (for puppies), what type of litter they've been using (for kittens) and their vaccination records.
– Wendy Graves
Park etiquette for dogs
Before visiting the dog park, here are some guidelines you need to know to keep your pet (and others') safe:
• Visit the park without your dog at different times of the day to see how busy it is, and to familiarize yourself with the bylaws and posted rules.
• For the first few visits with your dog, try to attend during nonpeak hours.
• Consider your dog's temperament before going out – shy dogs may find a dog park too stressful. Your dog should also respond well to basic commands such as "come," "sit" and "leave it."
• Don't take a very young puppy. "I never recommend that any dog under six months old go to a dog park," says Richard Jones, a dog trainer with Happy Dog Inc. in Toronto. Your pooch should also be fully vaccinated and spayed or neutered.
• Remove your dog's leash as soon as you enter the off-leash area. Leashed dogs have the potential to become aggressive if others are running free.
– Jennifer Brown