9 Essential Tips for New Dog Owners

Embarking on the journey of dog ownership can be one of the most fulfilling experiences in life. Dogs not only offer companionship but also add a unique joy and love to our lives that is incomparable. However, being a pet parent, especially for the first time, can be a daunting task. It requires patience, commitment, and a whole lot of love. Here are some essential tips for new dog owners that will help ensure you’re prepared for this wonderful journey.

1. Do Your Research

Every breed has its own unique traits, needs, and health issues. Research different breeds, understand their behavior, and choose one that fits your lifestyle. Consider factors such as the dog’s size, energy level, and grooming needs.

2. Puppy-Proof Your Home

Just like toddlers, puppies are curious and love to explore their surroundings. It’s crucial to ensure your home is safe for them. Remove toxic plants, secure loose wires, and put away any small objects they might choke on.

3. Invest in Training

Training your new dog is essential, not only for good behavior but also to keep them safe. Basic commands like ‘sit,’ ‘stay,’ and ‘come’ are crucial. Consider enrolling your dog in a training class or hiring a professional trainer.

4. Consistent Feeding Routine

Develop a consistent feeding schedule for your dog. Puppies usually need to be fed three to four times a day, while most adult dogs eat twice a day. Use high-quality dog food suitable for their age, size, and health status.

5. Regular Exercise

Regular exercise is essential to keep your dog healthy and to prevent behavior problems. The amount of exercise needed can vary based on your dog’s age, breed, and health. Generally, most dogs should have at least an hour of exercise each day, spread throughout the day.

6. Regular Vet Visits

Regular vet visits are vital for maintaining your dog’s health. Your vet will provide routine check-ups, and offer advice on feeding, training, and general care.

Local Pet Care

As a new dog owner, it’s vital to have reliable Germantown veterinary care for your furry friend. A local vet can provide necessary health services and guidance to help you navigate the first few months and beyond.

7. Socialization

Socialization is a crucial part of a dog’s development. Expose your puppy to different environments, people, and other animals to help them become a well-adjusted dog.

8. Patience is Key

Remember, becoming a responsible dog owner doesn’t happen overnight. There will be challenges along the way, from housetraining accidents to chewed-up shoes. It’s essential to remain patient, consistent, and loving.

9. Invest in Quality Grooming

Regular grooming is more than just keeping your dog looking nice; it’s an essential part of their overall health. Depending on your dog’s breed, they might need regular haircuts. Regardless of breed, all dogs need regular nail trims, ear cleaning, and dental care. Brushing your dog’s teeth can prevent dental disease, and regular coat brushing can keep their skin healthy and remove loose fur. If you’re unsure about how to perform any aspect of grooming, seek advice from a professional groomer or from your vet.

By following these tips, the journey of dog ownership will be an enriching and enjoyable experience. The bond you’ll develop with your dog will be one of the most rewarding relationships in your life. So welcome to the world of dog parenting – it’s quite a ride!

Unique Business Ideas To Start In 2023

Over the years there have been a signficant increase in small-scale businesses across the country. An unpredictable market, the effects of the world’s events and rising job layoffs have paved the way for burgeoning entrepreneurs.

Research discovered that despite the difficult financial conditions, the number of startups in the UK has increased by 4.5% as compared to last year. These numbers are justifiable as more and more people are now leaning towards the flexibility, independence and control that comes with owning a small business!

More often than not, people assume that setting up a business requires heavy investment. However, that is not necessarily the truth. There are several unique business ideas that require minimal starting costs. All you need is dedication and the willingness to put in adequate time and effort.

Are you hunting for unique business ideas? In this article, we will explore some innovative business ideas that you can consider starting this year!

Pet Care

Are you an ardent animal lover? If yes, then maybe this idea will capture your attention. A recent survey showed that the UK has around 17-21% shares in the global pet care industry. This number is only going to shoot up in the coming years with a rise in demand for pet care needs across urban cities.

These numbers also signify the competition that you ought to witness in this industry. Thus, it is imperative for an amateur to find their niche. One such lucrative option is offering grooming services, namely dog grooming services, as dogs are the most popular pets in the UK.

In fact, the pet grooming industry has witnessed a whopping growth of 5.7% CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) during the last year. In addition to this, the projected sales by the end of 2032 are expected to surpass 732 million pounds.

Needless to say, this idea requires professional expertise and training. However, thanks to technological developments, there are several platforms that educate you about animal grooming. They offer certified training that ensures you are well-equipped to start your own journey in this field, either as an owner or a freelancer.

Personalized Jewelry

Starting a jewelry business is a great idea. However, to differentiate yourself, you need to find a niche that separates you from the existing competition. To beat the competition, you can consider offering personalised jewelry services.

Perhaps you can incorporate the customer’s birthstone or use custom objects such as helm of awe raven pendant. These unique and powerful objects can make your jewellery pieces stand out from the crowd.

After all, jewelry is an extension of your personality and selecting one that best fits your personality is truly amazing! The key skills to survive in this industry are the quality and cradftmanship you use. Bear in mind that you need to invest in high-quality materials and build pieces that are both unique and beautiful in nature. This is a lucrative way to find your niche and attract a loyal customer base.

Retail Merchandise Sellers

Are you an avid fan of all things pop culture? Do you associate yourself with anime or fictional characters from your favorite fantasy movie? If you answered with a loud “YES,” then we have the perfect business idea for you!

One of our most thriving and exciting business ideas to explore this year is setting up an online merchandise store. The retail sector in the UK is growing at a steady pace, even after facing a tumultuous economic journey. In the year 2020, the retail industry contributed up to 5.2% towards the overall economic output in the UK.

More often than not, retailers are actively shifting to online retailing thanks to a wider demographic and growing demand. Merchandise retailers are no strangers to this growth! They offer official merchandise and collectables to entertainment fanatics across the globe.

Ranging from the TUBBZ ducks to the evergreen Lord Of The Rings figurines, there is a wide variety of audiences to cater to! If you are looking for something exciting and creative, then perhaps this idea would resonate with you well!

Virtual Interior Design

Remote workplaces have slowly and steadily become the new norm. However, this has led to a growing demand for virtual interior design services. If you are passionate about adding life to off-and-beaten spaces with your design skills, then this is a brilliant way to get started.

The perks of being a virtual business are endless! From having access to a wider audience base to having the flexibility of setting your own work timings, virtual businesses have transcended boundaries and offer a myriad of opportunities to entrepreneurs.

By starting your own virtual interior design business, you can offer clients the ability to work closely with you from the comfort of their homes. In addition to this, the adoption of virtual reality and 3D modelling software can further help in creating a virtual rendering of personalised home or office spaces, making your job easier.

These types of software programs offer the flexibility to present your brilliant ideas to customers without any obstructions. From interior designing to helping them pick the right furniture for their office space, you can offer consultancy services across these verticals.

Customised Gifting Store

Who doesn’t love receiving gifts, especially ones that in the long run become a part of your cherished memories? Starting a customizable gifting store lets you personalize precious moments and help people convey their thoughts better.

Based on your niche, you can use multiple occasions across the year to boost your sales. Customization brings exclusivity and personalization to clients, which in turn leads to higher customer satisfaction.

You can start small by offering personalized photo frames and keychains to create exclusive hampers and products. Although this market is highly competitive, your uniqueness and creativity will help you stand out. Along with this, you can also customize your packaging, and add special items and handwritten cards to increase your USP.

Zero Waste Grocery Store

Over the years the zero-waste movement has gained traction as more and more conscious consumers are working to minimise their impact on the environment. Grocery stores are often deemed to be a source that contributes significantly to food and plastic waste.

Hence, an opportunity to create a zero-waste grocery store would not only help you stand out in a crowded retail market but also have a positive impact on the environment.

Wondering how to begin? For starters, you can offer products that are either package free or made with recycled materials such as cloth bags or jute bags. Minimizing the use of plastic containers and encouraging the sale of glass jars is another brilliant initiative. To reduce food waste, you can collect all the leftovers and donate them to several food banks across the UK.

Sustainable Clothing Boutique

If you are a fashion lover and cannot refrain from sharing your sense of style with the online community, then starting an online sustainable fashion brand is an excellent idea.
The best part about this is that you don’t require a degree in fashion to build your brand. Even if you are an amateur in this field, you can curate and source readymade products from manufacturers and sell them directly to customers.

There are several fashion brands that thrive in the fast fashion industry. However, to separate yourself from the crowd, sustainability is the way to go.

Actively using recycled materials or organic cotton to create eco-friendly clothing is a great way to start. Further, targeting a particular niche, such as vegan clothing, and designing clothing with vegan leather can separate you from competitors.

Transcription Services

Are you proud of your listening and typing skills? Then a transcription service is the easiest and most flexible business to start. It requires low investment, as it is majorly done online, and is an extremely convenient and easy option for beginners.

From medicine to commerce, there are several industries that require transcription services on a regular basis. Moreover, you can expand your business over time by hiring certified transcriptionists that delve into different specialities, attracting customers to your business.

The cherry on the cake is the low investment and bare minimum overhead costs attached to this business idea. All you need is a computer, appropriate software and a secure messaging system to get started.

To Sum It Up

Eagerly waiting to start your entrepreneurial journey? We are certain you are! However, most entrepreneurs find themselves stuck in the brainstorming stage for a brilliant idea.
For many of us, this eureka moment doesn’t happen for a good amount of time. On the other hand, many of us are afraid to take the plunge into high-risk and high-investment opportunities.

However, entrepreneurship does not have to be so expensive. There are several lucrative ideas that are low on investment and offer greater returns to owners. Moreover, many of these businesses can be set up from the comfort of your home!

From pet care to sustainable clothing, there is something that will tick all your boxes! 2023 is the year for you to experiment with new ideas and say yes to new beginnings. Your search for unique and brilliant ideas ends here as you pave the way to get started on your entrepreneurial journey!

What to Keep in Mind When Renting with Pets

You’ve combed the web, hit the pavement, and found a fantastic pet-friendly apartment where you and your furry bestie can hang your hat (and your leash). Congratulations! But as anyone renting an apartment with a pet can tell you, there are many things to keep in mind before you sign that lease. In this post, we’ll examine some of the necessary steps you’ll need to take to secure your place, and some tips to make it safe and cozy for you both.

Verify the Rules

It’s essential to take a moment to review your lease’s pet policies, communicate clearly with your new landlord about their expectations of renters with pets, and get everything in writing upfront.

A good example is the issue of breed restrictions on certain dogs. Some states enforce regulations on the types of dogs you can keep, and others don’t. Regardless of state law, it’s legal for landlords to prohibit certain breeds on their property. For example, the state of Oregon has no breed laws, but apartments in its cities like Medford or Eugene may not allow them per the leasing agreement.

But if your landlord does enforce breed restrictions, it doesn’t mean you have to give up. A CV with references from your prior landlord, veterinarian, and/or obedience trainer can go a long way toward pleading your pet’s case so the landlord may make an exception.

Prepare for the Added Expenses

Many extra fees are associated with renting with pets; some are fixed, and others are one-time expenses.

Pet Rent: A fixed payment added to your regular monthly rent.

Pet Fee: A non-refundable upfront cost for allowing your pet to stay in the apartment.

Pet Deposit: An upfront, refundable fee you’ll pay to cover any damage done to the property by your pet. If no repairs are needed, your landlord should refund the pet deposit at the end of your lease.

Pet Proof for Safety

Your pet will probably be curious about their new space, but they’ll likely experience plenty of anxiety until they get used to it, too. To ensure your pet stays safe in their new environment, you can take steps to pet-proof before you bring them home.

Although furniture and carpets are the first to succumb to chewing, clawing and accidental damage, nervous dogs and cats may also chew on or claw at wooden window sills and door frames. You can protect them with bumpers or block them with furniture when possible. You can also prevent this by providing ample amounts of chew or puzzle toys around the house to keep them occupied while you’re out.

Be sure to keep your cabinets and trash locked to prevent your pets from getting into any potentially dangerous foods or chemicals. Not all, but some houseplants are poisonous to pets, so do your homework on houseplant toxicity and know when you should call an emergency vet for help. Whether your plants are toxic or not, keep them in hanging containers or high enough on countertops or shelving so your pooch can’t reach them. This keeps your pet safe and prevents soil stains on your carpet.

Apartment Training

After you’ve pet-proofed your new home, it’s important to work on getting the pets accustomed to the apartment first thing, before you get down to the business of training. Give them plenty of time to gradually explore, and stay with them for reassurance. If you need to spend a couple of hours away, consider designating a room for their crate, bedding, toys, and other essentials until they get used to the whole place.

Essential types of behavioral training (especially for dogs) include:

Barking: Whether it’s to protect their territory or simply because they’re excited, a barking dog can be a severe nuisance to your neighbors. Train them to refrain from barking when someone passes by the window or when they hear footsteps in the hall outside your door. Be sure to positively reinforce good behavior with love and treats!

Potty Training: If your doggie doesn’t yet understand how to let you know they need to go potty, create a regular routine for taking them out. Not only will it help teach them that outside is the place to go, but they’ll also look forward to the walk. Until you get them trained, or if it isn’t possible to keep the schedule, you can use puppy pads as a teaching tool to help them understand the entire apartment isn’t open for doing their business. Puppy pads should be temporary, but it’s a good start, and they’ll protect your floors until your dog learns the rules.

Crate Training: Some dogs feel much safer in a crate when left alone in the apartment, and it can also act as an excellent training tool. If you provide positive reinforcement when your dog chooses to use the crate, it’ll help them feel more secure, curb anxious barking, and discourage accidents.

Welcome Home!

For dog and pet lovers, a house isn’t a home without a four-legged companion. But with all that unconditional love and affection comes a lot of responsibility from us humans to ensure our dogs are safe and comfortable. When renting an apartment with your dog, be mindful of what may make them anxious or afraid. Work with your dog to put them at ease and show them you’re there for them no matter where you live. Once you’re settled in and comfortable, you and your dog can make a ton of great memories in your new place together!

Knee Injuries in Dogs: Things to Know About Cranial Cruciate Ligament Injury in Dogs

Has your dog been limping for a while now? Do you suspect there may be a severe problem in one of your pooch’s legs? Is your dog walking strangely after falling from a height? If so, then your dog may have torn or ruptured their cranial cruciate ligament.

Just like humans have an Anterior Cruciate Ligament, dogs have Cranial Cruciate Ligaments that connect the femur to the tibia. The cranial cruciate ligament stabilizes the knee joint and keeps the tibia below the knee. If your dog has injured or torn their CCL, then they can’t use their hind leg properly. This can be very painful for the dog and cause them discomfort.

If you’re from our area and you suspect your dog fell from a height or sprained their leg while playing, you must rush them to any of the nearest vet clinics in Virginia Beach to rule out the possibility of a torn CCL.

In this blog below, we will discuss CCL injury and knee surgery for dogs in more detail…

What is Cranial Cruciate Ligament Injury?

In dogs, knee injuries or tearing of the cranial cruciate ligament can be prevalent. The cranial cruciate ligament is similar to the anterior cruciate ligament. In dogs, there are two cruciate ligaments: the caudal cruciate ligament and the cranial cruciate ligament. When the CCL is injured, the tibia or shin bone slides forward. Dogs with injured knees experience pain while walking or standing. When these injuries are left untreated for a long period of time, it can damage the cartilage and surrounding bones and even cause osteoarthritis.

Things to know about CCL injuries

While dogs of all ages, sizes, and breeds are susceptible to a CCL injury, certain breeds of dogs have a higher risk. If you have a Rottweiler, German Shepherd, Labrador, Newfoundland, or Golden Retriever, you should be aware of CCL tears and take all necessary precautions to prevent it.

Dogs that are obese or overweight, irrespective of their breed, can also experience torn CCL’s. It has been observed that dogs not provided with regular exercise but instead given just occasional strenuous exercise have a higher chance of developing a CCL injury.

According to a study, it was revealed that 5% of neutered males may develop a CCL injury before reaching 12 months. On the other hand, 8% of female dogs are susceptible to CCL injuries. Another study shows that dogs with a history of CCL injuries in one leg may develop it in another leg.

How to detect if your dog has a torn CCL

Amongst all animals, dogs are more susceptible to cranial cruciate ligament injuries. If your dog has severe a CCL or orthopedic injury, he might experience difficulty in walking or simply bearing his own body weight.

Common signs of torn CCL’s are limping or lameness in dogs; however, the symptoms may vary from dog to dog. Another common symptom of torn a CCL is “drawer sign,” which pertains to the tibia bone being pulled forward like a drawer.

In order to determine a possible torn CCL in your dog, the vet at Virginia Beach animal hospital will hold the dog’s femur and move the leg. If the shin bone or tibia moves forward like a drawer, your pooch may have ruptured their CCL.

Besides conducting a physical examination, your vet may perform an x-ray to further check for possible damage to the knee joint.

Treatment for CCL tears

Torn CCL’s are a cause of concern for many pet owners. Pets with a torn or injured CCL have difficulty using the affected leg and may not be able to walk or stand. If your dog has a torn CCL, you should take him or her to your veterinary center for immediate medical care. Your vet may recommend knee surgery according to the condition and severity of the injury.

Top 12 Smallest Dog Breeds

You want to get a dog, but the idea of keeping up with a giant Rottweiler or furry Siberian Husky seems like too much work. On the other hand, maybe you need more space for a larger canine, or worry that you’re not strong enough. Whatever your reasons, the good news is that there are numerous smaller breeds to choose from so that you don’t miss out on the joys of pet ownership.

The top twelve furry friends shared in this article not only come pint-sized, but they make up for their small stature with mega-loving personalities. Ready to get an idea of the smallest dog breeds available to take home? Read on to learn more!

Cava-Tzu

While the name may sound exotic, in reality, it’s simply a hybrid of two other popular dog breeds: the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Shih Tzu. This mixed breed is highly sought after because of the personality traits inherited from the parents.

First-time dog owners should first consider Cava-Tzu puppies for sale when choosing a dog because they are naturally friendly, affectionate, and loyal to their families. You will also find there is a wide spectrum of coat colorations to choose from, making its thick, curly coat another adorable feature.

Chihuahua

When you think about small dogs, the Chihuahua is likely the first breed you imagine. Unsurprisingly, this canine is in the top ten most popular in this class. Many dog owners that choose this breed do so because they don’t require a lot of space to run and are extremely manageable because of their size. In addition, they have a playful nature and distinctive personalities that make them especially endearing. However, while they are loyal, they can sometimes be territorial, too, so sign your pup up for obedience training early.

Pomeranian

This list can only be accurate if the Pomeranian is on it. These dogs have undergone generations of specialized breeding, making them even smaller than in the days of Queen Victoria and her 35 poms! Pet owners that want a feisty little fluff ball of personality and play need to look no further than these perfectly-sized companions. They can be quite “talkative” and will let you know if they need more attention. Consider treat training if you don’t want your puppy to be overly chatty.

Shih Tzu

Another popular small dog breed is the Shih Tzu. Known the world over for being highly intelligent and lovable, you can also rest easy knowing they won’t set off any dander-allergy sufferers in your household. Their hypoallergenic coat makes them perfect for families with sensitive senses. It’s important to note that this breed is known for becoming overly attached to its owner sometimes, so enforce boundaries early to minimize separation anxiety issues.

Pug

The Pug has been one of man’s most trusted companions for almost six centuries. While they were originally the pets of Chinese emperors and Buddhist monks, their popularity skyrocketed even further once these small pooches made it to Europe.

With smooshed muzzles that make them snort and snore more than the average dog, these pups are full of life and ready to play. Great as an only child or part of a pack, they are famous for their sociability and devotion.

Maltese

The Maltese breed also shares a storied but somewhat mysterious history. While some think this adorable pooch may have come from the Mediterranean, we do know it made it into Greek and Roman history as a fashion statement. One of its most distinctive features is its coat, which is extremely versatile and can be grown long enough to make it appear to float across a floor as it walks.

Aside from its appearance, this breed has a loving and gentle nature, making it a devoted pet you’ll love for many years.

Papillon

One issue with small-breed dogs is that some are quite stubborn and need help to train. However, the Papillion is anything but hard-headed, making it an enjoyable pet that can easily learn simple tasks. This canine is a descendant of Spaniels but comes in at just under 10 inches tall at the shoulder.

Despite its slight stature, you’ll love its character as it plays and seeks attention. Because it loves to socialize, you won’t have to worry about introducing strangers or other dogs when visiting or on a walk.

Yorkshire Terrier

There isn’t anyone in the world that hasn’t heard of the Yorkshire Terrier. Like the Chihuahua, this breed is one of the smallest terriers on the planet. It’s also hypoallergenic which makes it suitable for almost every household. For the most part, Yorkies don’t weigh much more than 7 pounds, but this doesn’t mean they don’t have a big heart like their larger counterparts. These little furballs are full of energy and ready to have an adventure.

Toy Poodle

If you love the elegance of standard Poodles but don’t have the space to accommodate one, consider the Toy Poodle instead. At just 10 inches tall at the shoulder, this tiny poodle breed comes with the same traits as its larger cousins but in a smaller package. Whether you want to train it to do tricks or tasks, they are extremely intelligent and eager to learn.

Havanese

The Havanese is a perfect choice for pet enthusiasts who want a small sports dog. This Cuban breed is smart and can be trained for agility competitions or to work as a service animal. But, of course, if you want to just play and love your new pup, this canine won’t object and will gladly snuggle up for some TV time with you.

Miniature Pinscher

Mini Pins come in at just half the size of their larger German Pinscher counterparts. However, they show the same energy and dedication to their owners. These dogs are a ton of fun for active families and, despite Hollywood’s depiction of their guard dog ferocity, are eager to love. However, there are times when this breed might exhibit food and toy aggression, so it’s crucial you train them early.

Final Thoughts

Small dogs have a lot to offer their owners despite their compact stature. Many of the breeds shared in this article offer everything from intelligence and trainability to adoration and big personality. When deciding which pint-sized canine is ideal for your home, consider not just the environment they will live in but how their traits will blend in with your lifestyle. This will ensure there aren’t any surprises, and you can provide it with a safe and loving home for its entire life.